Posts Tagged ‘cinema’

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First the Freebies

I sift through the muck, so you don’t have to. Here are some underrated gems online for free right now:

Europa Report

I’ve talked about this before, and it remains a haunting, realistic science fiction thriller.

Triangle

I don’t think I have talked about Triangle. This is a great, twisted, deceptive story. It burrows deep into your mind and won’t let go.

The Last Seduction

I have mentioned this one on a list of sexy thrillers. Linda F. is a powerhouse and kind of evil.

Monster

Charlize Theron shows the depths she’s willing to go to be the world’s top actress. Serial killer Aileen Wuormos was almost unredeemable, but Theron plays her with unflinching humanity–the buzzword actors do love.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

Such a lush, immersive world, apparently based in Chinese myths, this is an unforgettable kung fu extravaganza, not least because of the two female co-leads.

Starship Troopers

Paul Verhoeven slides somewhere between satire and action-thriller. It’s an ugly planet, a bug planet. Potentially mocking his own source material, this film was ahead of its time, with our real-world slide to fascism in full gear.

Numerous other films at those sites.

 

Onto the recent stuff
We Are the Night

This lesbian vampire thriller from Germany is a mixed bag. Without trying to second guess anyone, I’d call it a b-movie at best that could have used a rewrite.

Papillon

This remake of the Steve McQueen film is based on a true story, and they tried to be accurate to the source material. The first film was more memorable, however, and is a classic. They diverge in styles and in some of the subplots. I prefer the original.

November

Oddball Eastern European legends mish-moshed into some kind of religious/steampunk insanity. It dragged a bit slowly, but it’s not like anything else you’re likely to come across this year. A true WTF film.

Risk

A documentarian selectively edits the story of the world’s greatest living truth-teller. Laura Poitras does a disservice to all concerned with this sly hit piece on Julian Assange. She was invited in to tell the story of Wikileaks, but she instead let her personal biases affect the outcome. A real disappointment, years are compressed into seconds, and she disparages Assange with innuendo, rather than doing the hard work of fact finding in the case of the Swedish accusations against him. From the start she says that Julian didn’t trust her, but this was revealing that she didn’t trust Julian, and she made a film to spread her distrust to others.

Small Town Crime

Good small-scale crime film. I liked this one, but couldn’t think of enough to say about it to post a solo review. It’s a low-budget, gritty detective story with a very flawed main character.

Hot Summer Nights

This was interesting, but the filmmakers didn’t seem to know where it was going. Case in point, they shot an unused ending that was completely different. Chalk it up to a young, inexperienced bunch. Some good scenes about wasted youth pushing the limits in the summertime. Not terrible, but never makes it to poignant.

Submission

Poignant. A writer’s film, one of many. Stanley Tucci is a great actor, and he delivers a twist on the professor/student forbidden tryst. Some hard-hitting scenes with real stakes.

Lights Out

Borderline unwatchable. The “high concept” drivel Hollywood hacks can’t get enough of, but I can. Skip.

The Train

A cult classic second world war film with Burt Lancaster bellowing his American accent and not even trying to pretend he’s French. While the rest of the cast is French or German. A nice plot about stopping a Nazi from stealing France’s greatest paintings as they are run out of the country.

Bombshell: The Heddy Lamar Story

Surprising, and most of the film has suspense and build up. The ending kind of fizzles. This exceptional woman was an inventor of military radio technology, which the government was too stupid to appreciate at the time it was needed most! And a beautiful actress with all sorts of issues.

Leave No Trace

This was highly recommended in the indie scene, and it’s shot well. I did like the completeness of the story, the multi-generational aspect, the coming of age and the unique perspective on society that it dramatizes.

Plus other films with full reviews.

Banned in Chinese #Cinema

Posted: December 14, 2018 in -
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19 Subjects Banned from Chinese Cinema

Talking Animals, Dystopian Themes, Nuclear Weapons, Homosexuality, Time Travel and more…

#7 Criticizing government

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If you haven’t heard about the new BMC cam you’ve missed the biggest camera news of the year. So here’s the info you want to peruse:

Insight Into The Blackmagic URSA MINI

PS

Forgot the footage:

1/3 down the page

All the filmmaking posts:

filmmaking

movie-camera

Geoff Boyle discusses choices when it comes to shooting:

He says a lot of the things I mentioned in this article :)

Directors: How to Choose a Camera System

filmmaking

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No, you can’t make this shit up. Edward Bernays wrote, in 1928:

“The American motion picture is the greatest unconscious carrier of propaganda in the world today. It is a great distributor for ideas and opinions.  The motion picture can standardize the ideas and habits of a nation.”

My article Propaganda in the Cinema 101 has been read over 1400 times since I posted it here. If you haven’t seen it, then it’s definitely worth considering.

-Your Editor

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The number of readers has more than doubled this past week. Many people dropping by, and it doesn’t just seem related to the Holidays. Even so, here’s my Christmas Movies List.

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But if you would like some more exposure for your film writing, take a chance and send it in. I’ve posted articles from more than 70 writers.

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