[Movies] Talk about the last movie you saw 2: Electric Threadaloo

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IT: Chapter 2

Loved it but not as much as the first and I'm particularly conflicted in a few ways.

I think it was too funny and that in being so, it took away from the fear and tension of some parts of the film. Another is that the sources of that humour, Bill Hader as Richie and James Ransone as Eddie, were by far the standouts. So I disliked how the humor lightened parts but loved the delivery? Additionally, it is LONG and feels it, particularly in the middle, but there was no other way to do this without it feeling like that. I didn't like the over-reliance on CGI this time vs the heavy practical effects of the first and the de-aging they do to the kids is really jarring in an uncanny valley way.

Oh! There are some really weird editing choices, in particular, one that stands out is a very oddly placed cut with Angel of the Morning suddenly playing out of nowhere. It's almost similar to the New Kids on the Block blasting in the first after Bev shuts the door to Ben's room but that has context and really works to cement their relationship. The Angel of the Morning part comes outta left field.

They pulled off some stuff I didn't think they would after the first that I was happy to see.

I know the director has said he's doing a supercut of the two movies but I'm kinda thinking I want to take a swing at doing so myself to get the whole thing to flow more like the book now that both have been released, more just to see how it would work.
 
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Frank didn't like It 2, to the surprise of probably no one.

Why put the intensely gross and frightening gay bashing scene from the book (and inspired by real life) into the fucking movie if the rest of it was going to be Tales From the Crypt levels of shitty, goofy clown jump scares. It's so tonally off. They took what I liked about the first movie (the character real life scare stuff like their horrible family stuff amped up) and cut most of it out entirely and really ramped up the shitty clown stuff. Like 3 out of the 47000 Pennywise scenes actually worked for me and usually involved clever camera work and didn't involve terrible cg clown bullshit.

I suppose the only way it's actually true to Steven King's work is the movie is insanely long and needed someone to edit it.
 
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Always Be My Maybe

This movie is sort of like Crazy Rich Asians, in that it also tries to tackle Asian issues and culture, but only does so on a superficial level. It's also not as good, the characters aren't as charming or memorable, and there's far too much reliance on cringe comedy. Cringe comedy really isn't my thing.
 
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I think my opinion of IT: Chapter 2 falls in the middle of Far and Frank: I didn't love it, but I also didn't hate it. Much like the first part, nothing actually scared me, even the jump scares. I really think that's more about me being so wrapped up in comparing it to the source material and the mini-series that I'm usually thinking, "Are they going to mention this? Oh, they changed that! Hmm, that's not a bad change. Oh, they really should have left that in" etc., and I forget to be scared. I honestly didn't notice the de-aging CGI, and I was looking for it.

Some spoilery thoughts:

-I'm with Frank that I'm not sure they should have brought back the Adrian Mellon part. Yes, I know it was based on something that actually happened up in Maine, and, in some small part, it loops back to Ritchie and Eddie, but the gay relationships ending in tragedy is too often a trope. Eddie died in the book, but between Adrian and the emphasis that Ritchie had feelings for Eddie, it boarders on Gay Fridging.

-I'm glad they gave Mike more to do in the final battle. I read a criticism that in the book, in any group scenes, Mike often faded into the background, which is valid. When he sat out the end battle in the book, it felt unfair to me.

-Bev can't catch a break in these movies, can she? Yes, she got her famous Mrs. Kirsh scene, but it seems like they otherwise didn't know what to do with her except make her a prize for Ben. [Side note: I thought the actress they got for Mrs. Kirch was excellent, but I felt like the miniseries actually made this scene a little creepier. Probably because it had more build-up.] Yes, Bev did get sidelined like Mike in the final battle in the book, but it still felt like she had more agency in the book. Speaking of which...

-I'm not sure I like how they handled Tom and Audra. It was like, "Bill has a wife! Bev has an abusive husband! Annnnddd... forgotten." I mean, I don't really need to see the prolonged Tom-abuse scene again, but part of what was really sinister about the book was that Pennywise wasn't the only threat to the Losers. I think I mentioned this in discussing the first movie, but Henry Bowers seemed more like an annoyance than a credible threat in these movies. Tom was almost laughable. Patrick wasn't a sociopath. King maybe long-winded at times, but he can really get you into the psyche of his characters. It's one thing that I think most adaptations of his work suffer from: the inability to really translate that.

-Bill Hader stole every scene he was in. There was a lot of humor, which seems like an odd choice, but at the same time, I think helped things move along. I didn't feel like 3 hours to me. "Angel of the Morning" felt weird and out-of-place, though.

-I loved that they poked fun at the criticisms that Stephen King as bad at endings through Bill.

-I loved that they got the original child actor of Ben from the IT miniseries to make a cameo in the board meeting with current Ben. I recognized him immediately. And of course, Stephen himself, going heavy on the Maine accent.

-I know these movies are already long and they had to keep them moving, but I really do miss Tim Curry's nuance to Bill Skargaard's in-your-face-scary-all-the-time Pennywise. There is no way any of these kids would go near Skargaard's Pennywise. Plus, Curry also had the benefit that it was supposed to be the late 50's and Bozo was popular on tv. I do like how they made the clowns in the fun house look like Curry's Pennywise.
 
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Always Be My Maybe

This movie is sort of like Crazy Rich Asians, in that it also tries to tackle Asian issues and culture, but only does so on a superficial level. It's also not as good, the characters aren't as charming or memorable, and there's far too much reliance on cringe comedy. Cringe comedy really isn't my thing.
I can tell you didn't like a movie when you won't even point out any hot women in it.
 

Dave

Staff member
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Yesterday. The movie about the guy who is the only one who remembers the Beatles. It's very predictable and really quite charming. I liked it a lot and, of course, the music is top notch.

My only beef about it is that I am starting to hate, hate, HATE Kate McKinnon. Every part she plays has the same smarmy tone and slurring of words and her delivery is always nails on a chalkboard. She drags the movie down. Replace her and it gets 1000x better.
 
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Saw IT CHAPTER 2 tonight. It's...not very good. Most of the adult actors aren't interesting (especially the actor who plays Ben) or given much to work with. There are some LAUGHABLY bad CG monster effects. And there's a running joke about "bad endings" that becomes foreshadowing. (As in, it's a bad ending, which makes it feels like they KNEW it was bad and just accepted it rather than fix it.)

I went into this hoping it'd be one of those movies I disagree with MovieBob on, but nope. His assessment was pretty spot-on.

The sad thing, there's lot here that, with some tweaking could have worked. Less comically bad CG monsters, more preying on psychological fears. And there were some good things. Like the first one, it's incredibly well shot and there are some really great scenes. But not enough.
 
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And there's a running joke about "bad endings" that becomes foreshadowing. (As in, it's a bad ending, which makes it feels like they KNEW it was bad and just accepted it rather than fix it.)
I haven't seen the movie but isn't IT notorious for having an awful ending? They probably were trying to poke fun st that, while assuming they fixed the problems.
 
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Lampshading is still lampshading. They could've changed anything they wanted. It's lazy of them to look at the book, shrug, and have the movie complain about it.

The book's ending can't be done in a movie. It would never work, because unlike both adaptations, the book isn't kid story then adult story, it's kid story WITH adult story, because the adult story is largely a vehicle for telling the kid story. The climaxes happen together, cutting the narrative between past and present, feeding into each other. It's also performed on a cosmic and mental spacial level that isn't properly explained, which is fine for a book where you're immersed in the characters, but is poor storytelling in a movie.

I've heard there was a lot of studio handwringing behind the scenes, where test audiences didn't respond as desired to some scenes, so they were re-edited to be puzzling, comical, or jump scares. Seems to me that the 2017 It was too successful for producers to leave its sequel to chance, and what happened is exactly what always happens when management thinks they know more than the people actually doing the work.

EDIT: I haven't seen It 2 because I don't want to be at the movies that long again this year, so I'll catch it for rent. I'm just speculating on the disappointment I've been hearing.
 
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On the subject of Stephen King and bad endings....

Gerald's Game

loved it. Amazing performances all around. Intense, shocking, horrifying in a new way. I love me some Mike Flanagan.

But that ending was DEFINITELY the weakest point of the movie. I get the symbolism of her growing up and all, just think the handling of it could have been better.
 

GasBandit

Staff member
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Went to see Ad Astra with some friends tonight. Overall it was pretty good, even if it was mostly a movie about a man's conflicted feelings about his father disguised as a space movie. Borrowed heavily from Gravity, The Martian, etc. Plus a couple "that would never work" moments that sort of ruptured suspension of disbelief. Still worth seeing though, IMO.
 
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Watched three films on my recent flight.

Alita: Battle Angel: Overall pretty good, though it has that often-seen problem of spending too much time and effort setting up future installments, to the detriment of this installment. The story wasn't anything special, and the big names in the cast (Waltz, Connelly, Ali etc) weren't really called upon to stretch their talents. But Rosa Salazar does tremendously well in the title role, the visuals and action are delicious, and there were some genuinely moving moments. The cyberpunk aesthetics weren't quite as beautiful as, say, Ghost in the Shell, but they were still very well done. Oh, and Rosa Salazar is really hot. As is Jennifer Connelly, who shows up in one scene in lingerie for (as far as I can tell) no real story-related reason.

Shazam: I liked it well enough, though I think maybe a little less than some other people did. It's the most comedic of the DCEU movies I've seen so far, and most of the jokes landed with me, though some fell flat. But some of the scenes and battles stretched out too long, as if they couldn't decide what to use as the climax of the scene, so they used all of the ideas they had. The cast generally do well. I was particularly impressed by Zachary Levi's impression of a teenage boy.

The Lego Movie 2: I recall saying I liked but didn't love the first film, and I think I feel about the same for the second one. It was entertaining, and most of the humor was right up my alley. I also liked the meta-jokes I spotted, such as Chris Pratt's other character having a squad of velociraptors. The voice cameos were also fun to spot, such as Bruce Willis and Jason Momoa. Oh, and the music was rather good. Also, is it weird if I find Wyldstyle hot?
 
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Took a date to Hustlers and really enjoyed it. Made me want to dive into the real events the movie was based on. I was actually surprised how much I liked it but based on my current rich Wallstreet people can fuck themselves dead stance on life, I was rooting for the main characters 100%

My date was 100% shocked that the movie could only be rated 14A. In Alberta, it takes some sort of truly heinous realistic depiction of sexual violence or it must be incredibly offensive to a mainstream religion before it gets the 18A rating. I don't think I've literally ever seen the R rating on anything.
 
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My entire High School sinking into the sea

DAMN god, all the drama of a disaster movie, combined with all the shitty melodrama of high school, I LOVE IT!
I caught this after my finals my first year at OSU over at the Gateway. This movie is BONKERS and I don't know why it isn't more of a cult hit than it is.
 
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We rewatched Return of the Jedi today.

I don't know how Boba Fett became the god of nerds when the most he does is get smacked by near-blind Han, fly face first into Jabba's barge, and then get eaten by the Sarlaac. At least C-3P0 can fly without a jetpack.

And of course I teared up when Darth Vader makes his decision because that's who I am now! That scene is so good. I'm so glad we have the original version DVDs so there isn't Vader going "NOOOO" over that moment. I'm glad the OT is out of Lucas's hands now.
 
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We rewatched Return of the Jedi today.

I don't know how Boba Fett became the god of nerds when the most he does is get smacked by near-blind Han, fly face first into Jabba's barge, and then get eaten by the Sarlaac. At least C-3P0 can fly without a jetpack.

And of course I teared up when Darth Vader makes his decision because that's who I am now! That scene is so good. I'm so glad we have the original version DVDs so there isn't Vader going "NOOOO" over that moment. I'm glad the OT is out of Lucas's hands now.
Also this:


1:13 being when Vader mentions Leia, so Luke goes off on him, and out of love, Luke nearly kills his father and comes closer than ever to the edge of the dark side. Every drop of that is in the music.
John Williams is incredible.
 
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Phantom of the Paradise - I...think I really liked this. I mean, it's asinine. The music is dated, to say nothing of the overall style. Nonetheless, it's entertaining as hell. Also, I may have a weird thing for 1970s Jessica Harper. :hide:
 
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Hustlers

Meh. A cliche storyline and some mediocre writing don't give the actors much to do. It was very predictable and lacked any real charm to make up for it.
 

Dave

Staff member
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Rewatched Anna and the Apocalypse. This movie is so fun (especially if you ignore the teen drama, which most times just annoys me.) Here's one of the songs. You'll see why I like it.

 
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We rewatched Return of the Jedi today.

I don't know how Boba Fett became the god of nerds when the most he does is get smacked by near-blind Han, fly face first into Jabba's barge, and then get eaten by the Sarlaac. At least C-3P0 can fly without a jetpack.

And of course I teared up when Darth Vader makes his decision because that's who I am now! That scene is so good. I'm so glad we have the original version DVDs so there isn't Vader going "NOOOO" over that moment. I'm glad the OT is out of Lucas's hands now.
Boba is all about the costume, he's walking talking Swiss Army knife. Who doesn't want flame throwers, grappling hooks, a rocket and a freaking RPG strapped to his back?
 
What We Do in the Shadows

Watched this for the second time at a friend's house last Saturday. Still just as hilarious as the first time I saw it. Directed by and starring Taika Waititi (before gaining fame with Thor Ragnarok), it follows a group of vampires that are living in a house together in New Zealand. FX has done a show based on it and I have not seen that yet, but the movie is well worth a watch, especially right now during Halloween season.

 
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The first four episodes of the series are a bit odd, as the actors and writers are kind of figuring things out, but it improves rapidly from there. The Vampire Council and Vampire Orgy episodes are fucking hilarious.
 
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Joker

This is an amazing movie that I'm not sure I liked very much, if that makes sense.

Joaquin Phoenix is awesome in the title role, and if it was up to me I'd hand him the little golden statue for Best Actor right now. His body language and facial expressions are masterful. Stuff like his odd gait when he runs, the otherworldly dances he does when he's done something naughty, the way he laughs despite clearly not wanting to laugh (there's a story-related reason for this, don't worry), all of these combine to create a portrayal of a sick man, and you can easily understand how he'd be marginalized, ignored, abandoned, and ostracized by society. The other cast members all give strong, competent performances, though granted they generally didn't have much to do. There were some pretty striking and beautiful shots, as well as some deft close-ups that are nicely claustrophobic. And while the story doesn't really go anywhere surprising, it was engrossing enough to keep me interested.

The main problems I have with this movie, though, are that it's not really a Joker film, and I'm not entirely comfortable with how it addresses mental illness. On the first point, the stuff related to the DC universe actually feel like an afterthought. This movie would've worked just as well, or even better, if Gotham wasn't named Gotham, if Thomas Wayne wasn't named Thomas Wayne, if the main character had worn any other mask instead of clown makeup, etc. This is a story about a mentally ill man who snaps and kills a bunch of people, and realizes that he doesn't mind killing. Okay, that's an interesting story, but is it a Joker story?

Now, here I need to touch upon the other famous Joker origin story, the Killing Joke. The Killing Joke is a one-shot comic that does not exist in any particular place in the DC comics chronology. There are some elements that the Joker film shares with the Killing Joke, such as the Joker starting out as a failed comedian. However, the accuracy of the Joker origin story depicted in the Killing Joke is questionable, because as the Joker and others have noted, he's very much an unreliable narrator. Apart from the Killing Joke, there have been other origins stories suggested here and there in the comics, but none of them have been confirmed as the truth. In other words, the Joker does not have an origin. (This is part of his theme of duality with Batman. Where Batman is defined by that fateful moment when his parents were gunned down in Crime Alley, the Joker has no clear origins or motivations. Where Batman is a terrifying figure of darkness that is dedicated to justice, the Joker is a colorful clown that is an agent of chaos, etc.) Therefore, giving the Joker an origin story feels odd. Giving the Joker an origin that's almost mundane in its process feels borderline blasphemous. So, all in all, there's this nagging voice in the back of my head that says this movie doesn't really feel like a Joker movie.

Regarding mental illness, I think this movie does a disservice to the many people living with a variety of illnesses who don't become crazed killers. The Joker is the protagonist of the film, and there's no hiding from the fact that this movie glorifies him and his actions. I mean, one of the last scenes is literally of the Joker receiving the adulation of a cheering crowd. There are many people who are in similar situations to the Joker at the start of the film, people who need medical help, therapy, and/or a friendly ear to hear their troubles. There are many people who, like the Joker, don't get the help they need. Is this movie suggesting that the only way for these people to be heard and helped is to become a murderous agent of chaos? Is this movie suggesting that mentally ill people can take control of their lives and their diseases by killing their way through their troubles? The Killing Joke is about how one bad day can turn a man insane; the Joker movie is about how a long series of bad days will become a bad life, and how much of that can one man take?

I guess there's some merit in bringing these uncomfortable topics to the fore. If this movie gets some more people to examine the issue of mental illness, then that'd be a good thing. But it still made me a bit uncomfortable.

Anyway, all in all this is a very well-made and well-acted movie. Overall, I'd definitely recommend it.

Also Zazie Beetz is hot.
 
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I’m going to agree with @bhamv3 and say Joker was a well-acted movie that I did not actually enjoy. And its connection to the greater Batman/DC universe does feel tenuous at best. I’m not entirely sure why it exists, to be honest. Phoenix deserves praise for his acting, but everything else is kind of “blah.”
 
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Boy, they sure did make a worse version of Taxi Driver and The King of Comedy coated in a completely made up controversy overblown by the shitty (person) director and the studio for extra publicity.

That does make it better than most comic book movies, but, BUT, I do not like the praise it's getting as a character film. I don't like the connections it makes to mental illness. Joaquin's Joker doesn't really develop that much, just goes from deranged to DEranged. He does a good performance, for sure, but it's not as strong a movie as all the early buzz made it out to be.

Next time someone makes a movie with Joker in it, they're not allowed to read Killing Joke, Year One or The Dark Knight Returns. They have to go outside of those stories. F'rreal.

The only reason there should be any Oscar buzz around this movie is that the rest of the year was fucking dire (which it heavily was). MOVIES!!! were pretty shit this year. There were some great lesser known films, but those don't really matter anymore do they?
 
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