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petetherock

Movies You Watched Recently And Felt Strongly About

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OT but since this is an active topic..........anyone notice any Blu Ray promotion on new DVDs'.

Haven't rented or bought any new ones in ages.

Please?

yes several dvds I have seen lately have BD advertising on them, check for new sony movies.

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Letters from Iwo Jima.....

I watched this in a non light controlled room.... and with letterboxes since there are subtitles....

And even though I've watched other war films... including the prequel to this... Flags of our Fathers that is hardly worthy of being in the same DVD box as this one... LFIJ is just completely disarming.....

For the first time in a while I was brought close to tears not once but many times throughout the movie.... very powerful... and I still feel the touch of this film many hours after...

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Letters from Iwo Jima.....

I watched this in a non light controlled room.... and with letterboxes since there are subtitles....

And even though I've watched other war films... including the prequel to this... Flags of our Fathers that is hardly worthy of being in the same DVD box as this one... LFIJ is just completely disarming.....

For the first time in a while I was brought close to tears not once but many times throughout the movie.... very powerful... and I still feel the touch of this film many hours after...

Oh I'm not a fan of war movies at all but definately will give this one a go now,thanks for the review.

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The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

I went to the this show with some initial reluctance, it was supposed to be ‘just another Forrest Gump’, with some moving scenes but clearly tailored to grab Oscars.

Anyway, onto the movie, I saw quite enough of it to want to own it and even savor it in the comfort of my home, and share this review with you, maybe watch it together right to the end 

The plot is rather unique, telling the story of Benjamin Button in proxy, by a young lady who sits at the bed of her mother. We can gather from the hospital settings, the morphine that she is dying probably from cancer, and from here, she lets her daughter have a book which she opens to begin narrating the life of Ben and at the same time, cross-reference a diary of this dying old lady, and how their lives intertwine.

Be forewarned, that I will tell you parts of the plot next, but if curiosity get the better of you, read on….

Movies which narrate a person’s life, however unusual are nothing new, but the director has managed to reach out and grab our attention with two elements, empathy & admiration, and relation to Ben. Firstly we all like the idea of someone who makes it despite the odds, and get the girl, the money and the happy ever part don’t we? Secondly the story takes us on a walk through a tumultuous period of modern American history, and stretching from the 30s reach up to the recent times, this movie allows many in the audience to relate to it and share, understand and of course emphatise with the same experiences that Ben encountered. This helps win over the audience and I can see this as a box office hit.

There are a few pre-requisites for an Oscar show, such as touching moments, making your audience reach out for tissue, epic cinematography, a good music score, and a careful selection of the right actors who can look like they are acting without trying too hard to do so. In Cate Blanchet, we have such a bankable star, but Tilda Swinton, Julia Ormond and many others and my personal favorite the lady playing his black mum, Taraji Penda Henson, who seemed to be such a positive person, that many would probably liker her to be their mums too…. She should also consider working in the peadiatrics ICU, or perhaps, in a real orphanage, where the energy she exhibited, the willingness to show love, care and trust in God was like a light to lost sad souls in the darkness. It is no wonder Ben grew up happy and content with someone like that to look after her… a true poster girl for all mothers and care givers.

Then there is Brad Pitt….sometimes, being one of the most desired men on the planet has its drawbacks, and many still doubt his ability to act, but his casting here was actually a positive one and it suited him well, not just as a box office draw, but he did do well to play his role and deserves accolades for it. Of course the people who did his make up to transform him from a man in his 40s to an old man and vice versa did extremely well and kudos to them for such a convincing job. But behind the makeup is a stellar cast who come together to make this quite a special hit.

Moving Oscar type movies sometimes make dry or sappy shows that leave you peering at the clock, but here David Fincher the director does well to blend in humor from small scenes, mixed into the extended love story that makes up the central part of the movie, and parts of unrequited love, and growing old. The themes in this show are manifold, firstly it deals with aging even though it seems that the movie does it in a reverse fashion, it actually portrays the elements of the fear of it, from both sides, and here Cate Blanchet and Brad Pitt do a sterling job. Some of us will definitely relate well to the lose of beauty, the inability to do things we used to be able to do, or the regret of time passing without us achieving much.

Then the love stories that make up the central theme are beautifully done, and made it alright for me. He does not always get what he wants in the show with firstly a teenage kind of love, the ungainly kind we all can relate to, then a hushed clandestine kind of affair, tender despite its forbidden nature and ever more painful at the abrupt end to it with nothing more than a short note slipped under the door to announce it is over. I guess it is kind of like getting dumped on sms, email or even Facebook, the latest way someone can tell you they need space or just want to be friends…

But it is the enduring kind of love which makes it all bearable, the sort that allows you to love without condition, and knowing it will end, but still embracing it and making the best while it lasts. How about trying to love someone you know is terminal? Or who will walk away from you? And then coming to love someone who did walk away from you? A particularly poignant scene involves first the captain of a ship who laid dying apart being shot, and he mutters with his dying breath, that you could curse, hate, scream about things you feel went wrong, did not go your way, but at the end, you just quietly and peacefully perhaps accept it with some dignity. The same kind of quiet dignity comes when the old lady dies too, and the moment of love she shares with her daughter is a good salve for all the hurt that they may have felt through the years.

Ben then repeats these lines when his father dies whilst seated watching his favorite sunrise (gotta go to this place!) and somehow I can relate. For each time something goes wrong, or when I get the “space” line, I can be bitter and indeed I was, never quite understanding why it has to be and definitely not agreeing it is the best thing, but since it tales two to dance a tango, you just quietly with some dignity accept it and relish the positive experiences and the kind of memories you want to keep.

Finally I do urge you to watch it, and perhaps I will join you, in spirit if not in person, as I want to complete the experience and sit down to my own little sunrise too…

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We've posted our latest thoughts on a few new release movies and DVDs as part of DVDBits latest Bitscat.

BitsCast - Episode 4!

We review DVDs and Blu-rays in the form of Hellboy II: The Golden Army; Batman: Gothman Knight; Tropic Thunder; Wall-E; Happy Go Lucky; You Kill Me and The Mummy - Tomb of the Dragon Emperor!

At the cinema, we go along to The Wrestler; Doubt; Revolutionary Road; Gran Torino and Milk. Plus Trivia and all the other nonsense that you’ve come to expect!

Don't delay - listen, subscribe, feel the feed here!

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Last a few days, I watch the Dawson's Creek , it said about Set in a small coastal, Massachusetts town named Capeside, Dawson's Creek tells the story of four teenagers as they struggle through adolescence. This is particularly true for 15-year-olds Dawson Leery (James Van Der Beek), an introspective dreamer and Joey Potter (Katie Holmes), a precocious tomboy unaware of her beauty. Best friends since childhood, they are about to enter that confusing time in life where nothing is the way it was and nothing is as it seems...

Dawsons-Creek-Seasons-1-6-DVD-Boxset-DVDS-1450.html

Is this an ad and a link to a site you run, or do you have an opinion on this series beyond the blurb on the back of the DVD? If the former (and I'm going a big stretch to give you the benefit of the doubt here and putting "if" in the sentence), please read the posting guidelines. If the latter, please tell us what you actually thought - though technically this thread is about movies, not TV series.

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Golden Compass

This comes straight from the studio's cookbook on how to milk success from a formula-

Take a few famous stars, get another book with a medieval, LOTR / Narnia type story line, mix in lots of CGI creatures, add cute new faces and some fight scenes and stir.

Sadly it doesn't always turn out well and this is a prime example. Religious crap not withstanding (I think a simple non-reference to deamons would have done them lots of good), it isn't a good plot and you cannot rescue it with megastars and CGI.

Plot - confusing, and the girl can be quite irritating -- 2/5

Action - action kunkies may like it, but LOTR has it beaten hands down - 2.5/5

Chick Factor -- huh obasan maybe but Nicole Kidman is no longer a chick, hire a real chick to pull in the testosterone crowd... 2/5

I would stay away, not even a rental

Juno

AH FINALLLY I stayed awake, watched this and wanted to do it again to appreciate the little nuances.

Teenage pregnancy is well handled, niether endorsing or condemning it here. Ellen Page is a real star, but everyone chips in to make this a hit.

Plot - pretty decent 4/5

Action - zip

Chick Factor - She is a cutie daughter kind of girl but not hot -- 3/5

I would rent it at least, but its not worth USD 28 for the BR disc, although the soundtrack is worth getting.

Jumper

Another movie of little value or entertainment I saw on the way home...

"darth vader" out of his role is pretty good as a spoilt brat with the ability to jump space, like the guy with the tail from X men. But that chap has much more character and charisma.

Here I actually wished the jumper would get caught. His British friend's accent sound more like a fake pretending to have studied in Oxford too. Obviously he steals and doesn't use it for good, and Samuel Jackson looks like he sleep-walked through a role he had to do to pay the bills. And he looks like a fish out of the water without muttering M...F... every few seconds or having snakes coming out of his pants.

Plot -- zzz 1.5/5 even though the concept could have been pretty good

Action -- 2.5 / 5 again potential wasted

Chick factor - not bad, but just eye candy and no character development 3/5

Rent buy or forget it -- forget it

the fact that you liked 'juno' better than 'there will be blood' confuses me.....juno was shocking, the dialog was trying way too hard and it felt like that in everyyyy single line there had to be a joke involved which grew tiresome. All i could do was laugh when it won best screenplay at the oscars. Almost as funny as nicole kidman and crash winning

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Legendary Assassin

This is Wu Jing's directorial debut, and judging from his acting and the movie, this will please action fans but make those who are looking beyond the paper thin plot cringe.

An assasin comes to a small island off Hong Kong and cuts off the head of a underworld head, saves a pretty police woman and comes back to rescue her.

Thats it, really the entire plot in a single sentence....

But if you look past that, and focus on the action, Wu Jing can be the next Donnie Yen, Jackie Chan, Jet Li and more. Plus the fact that he is more wooden than them is beside the point, he really kicks ass in this movie and his moves are quite spectacular, and the stunts are worth the price of the DVD... 3/5

Chick Factor: Celina Jade plays his love interest and a wonderful eye candy she is... 3.5 /5

Action: There is plenty of action, surround effects - the HKG DVD has DTS ES and there is lots of bass, surround to keep HT fans happy.

So should you run out for this: well rent it at least IMO and see if the action scenes will keep you satisfied. Its no Ip Man but it won't make you too unhappy either.

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I travel a lot and I love watching movies in general and even though I only get a tiny screen in cattle class, it still beats paying through my nose at Reading.

This is a trial post, since I am not sure which forum suits movie reviews best...

I won't try and comment on the PQ or AQ since it was through a puny airline headset.

Legend:

I can see potential for surround effects and demo material, but the plot was quite lame and the ending was as controversial as the press said. Actually no, it was quite zzz....

Plot - paper thin, and wooden acting for someone who is capable of more -- 2.5 / 5

Action - a little but I guess it wasn't the main thing -- 3/5

Chick factor - looow -- 1 /5

Rent buy or forget it -- worth a rent since I saw Omega Man

There will be blood:

This was supposed to be a wonderful show of acting, but somehow it didn't hit the spot at all. Not slick enough....

Plot - its about an oilman -- 2.5/5

Action - huh? -- 1/5

Chick factor -- 0

Rent buy or forget it - rent once for the hype and laugh over it

No country for old men:

Again didn't do it, the whole evil man was only good to show Javiar's acting which was good, and Josh Brolin put in a credible performance too, but the plot was too twist and dark for me.

Plot -- 3.5/5

Action -- 3/5

Chick factor -- 0

Rent - maybe

I hav'nt watched a Blu Ray for a while and I grabbed The Matrix on the weeknd. Great video transfer,but the audio was fantastic.Dolby Digital true HD via 5.1 analogue on my AVR. This is a must buy for me whan it goes on sale.

Cheers.

Thornton :lol:

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Breaking News

Not sure how this one slipped past, it was a well acclaimed movie in 2004, with Johnnie To directing, with some of his usual favorite actors, plus two relative lightweights, Kelly Chen and Richie Ren in the lead, it was a good gripping watch. Lots of little twists and a cast who really work well together.

The two so called lightweights were tossed into lead roles and did admirably, with good chemistry and decent performances. Nick Cheung also excels as a dogged policeman who gets his man. Lam Suet, Simon Yam and Maggie Siu, staples in Johnnie's movies make great impressions with the little screen time they have. Good stuff. 4/5

Action: plenty to see, hear and feel. With a HKG version DVD that has DTS ES, DD EX to choose from, there is good effects, bass and it all elevates the mood and contributes to a good show. Johnnie To movies have always had good sound engineering, and this is no exception. The surround mix really puts you in the centre of the action. Kudos 4/5

Chick factor: Kelly Chen is pretty and here plays a hard, career minded driven lady to good effect. 3.5 /5

Simple stuff, this is a keeper for me, and will deserve many viewings.

Plot: The Hong Kong Police finds itself in a public relations crisis after a disastrous shootout and the scene of a police officer surrendering in apparent fear to the mobsters was captured and telecast by the local media. Inspector Cheung and his crew are assigned to the task of catching these mobsters, led by the intelligent and resourceful Yuen.

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Breaking News

Not sure how this one slipped past, it was a well acclaimed movie in 2004, with Johnnie To directing, with some of his usual favorite actors, plus two relative lightweights, Kelly Chen and Richie Ren in the lead, it was a good gripping watch. Lots of little twists and a cast who really work well together.

I'm usually a fan of Johnnie To, but this one just didn't work for me. If you want to see some great Johnnie To work, check out Election 1 & 2 (think a Hong Kong version of The Godfather) and Exiled. By comparison to those 3 films, Breaking News was kinda by-the-numbers and flat I thought. Each to their own, of course.

If you're an Asian cinema fan, though, go grab yourself some Korean films. Those guys know how to make crazy movies. Chan-wook Park's darkly funny and brutally violent "Vengeance Trilogy" is a good place to start (Sympathy for Mr Vengeance, Oldboy, and Sympathy for Lady Vengeance).

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'Man From Earth'

Watched this one last night and I can't stop thinking about it.

It's a dialogue based B grade movie and is the last screenplay written by Jerome Bixby(completed on his deathbed). Bixby wrote the 'Mirror Mirror' episode(among others) in Star Trek TOS, also a number of short stories that were adapted into 'Twilight Zone' episodes. He also wrote the screenplay for 'IT, Terror from beyond space' which was the inspiration for 'Alien'

Absolutely amazing story telling.

Plot------some spoilers but I won't give away it all:

Basically it's about a teacher who is leaving and has a get together with other members of the faculty to say goodbye. He decides to confide in them and reveal his true identity as a 14,000 year old man who was born as a caveman and grew normally to the age of about 35 and never grew any older. The discussion that ensues meanders around various topics, some more heated than other, as the friends try to work out if he is in fact telling the truth since he has no physical evidence to speak of.

The discussion turns to a particular topic and what unfolds simply blows you away............there are also a couple of twists near the end of movie, one of which moved me to tears.

Picture Quality: Very poor even for DVD

Audio Quality: Sub par, I didn't expect it to blow me away given the genre, but I had to replay a couple of spots as the dialogue in parts was difficult to understand.

cheers

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Been travelling, so more movies recently....

Last Chance Harvey

This is a rather simply movie employing a straight forward storyline, with plenty of cliches and predictable bits. An elderly divorced Dustin Hoffman travels from USA to UK for his daughter's wedding, he gets into all kinds of setbacks, loses his job but in the midst of it all, meets Emma Thompson.

Recently perhaps with the economic crisis, there seem to be more of such feel good, romantic comedies coming on with great frequency. This is like a rom-com for the middle-aged, divorced or just those who did not quite meet the teeny, youth type fall in love groups.

This by the numbers yarn would have failed or just faded if not for the twin towers of the Oscar winning actors in it, who carry the film and portray their roles with sensitivity, and much feeling. Hoffman of Kramer vs Kramer fame, does his role with a quiet confidence, and adds that touch, a good choice for his role and I felt it was akin to his underrated role in the Accidental Hero with Geena Davis.

Emma Thompson is a regal thespian who carried that tone she used in Love Actually into this movie and made this movie watchable.

No real babe or action here, but these two do without the obligatory sex scene and even do not hold hands throughout, but add a kind of love story which is strong on emotion and not the erotic or carnal sort.

Recommended for at least a rental.

Edited by petetherock

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Transporter 3

The transporter series will never win an Oscar. Yet the potent mix of fast action, mixed with plenty of explosions, and beautiful women plus the dry humour of the eminently likeable Jason Statham as a retired ex military sort with an ability to kick butts is a tempting proposition.

The success of number 1 made it a commercial necessity to make the sequel, but this failed rather badly at the box office so it was brave of the production team to attempt number 3.

The usual elements which made the first 2 shine are there, and it keeps through to a simple plot which makes the movie tick and allow the action scenes and the Cory Yuen choreographed fight scenes to speak for themselves.

A razor thin plot about getting a hot chick from point A to point B whilst having a proximity fused bomb on his wrist is the how the story unfolds.

There is plenty of action, and Jason makes a good choice as an action hero laced with his dry humour which on the odd occasion, makes the wry smile plastered on a taciturn face, fashionable.

Chick factor – somehow a freckled marked new face with a lousy Georgian accent does not make it too hot, how about getting someone like Maggie Q, or Giselle Bundchen? They probably cost too much.

So should you buy this, IMO, definitely worth a rental.

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The Day the Earth Stood Still Blu-ray

What do big stars do to get some easy cash, apart from being featured in ads, which actually isn’t easy work, stars can also cash in on their megawatt status to make some really awful movies. They just sleep walk through a role, and take home the money. I guess this is one of them.

This is a re-make, and adds fancy sci-fi CGI, but Keanu Reeves just really goes through it with a demeanor like he was in a coma. Jennifer Connelly is great eye candy, but there is little substance and few action sequences to save the plot which tries to add in a green peace kind of message, but the plot is listless, much like the other poor movie recently, “Happening”, where, there was not much happening really.

No one seems to be trying too hard, and it is a relief that this was not a long movie.

Someone on a long winter night might want to give this a rent, just to while the time away, otherwise, I would not waste my money.

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