This week's Movie review......

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Ang Mo
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Postby Ang Mo » Sun Nov 18, 2007 6:53 am

I will have to keep my eye out for that one Ben.

I have been watching the old televsion series Route 66 which just got released a couple of weeks ago on DVD. Made in 1960, it is the story of two friends who have decided to cruise around America working odd jobs and having adventures along the way. They drive this really cool 1960 convertible Corvette. The car is so classy I would really like one of those but the one I saw on ebay cost $65,000.00 I could afford a Chevette, but that was not to cool looking. Anyhow a guy named Stirling Silliphant was the writer and he was very good at incorporating some pretty deep story lines during the espisodes. Can't wait for the second season to come out. Vienna should sing the Route 66 theme song. I think Mick Jagger did but his version stinks. It should be done with piano only and kind of in the jazz style of the original.

Now for the joke De Jour or Du Jour or Joke of the day.

Four men were talking about their occupations and they asked the first man what his job was and he said he worked in the marketing department of Nike putting socks into plastic bags and mailing out sample gifts to customers. He said he was nicknamed a Sock Tucker. They ask the second guy and he says he works for Coca-Cola in quality control taking damaged cans off the production line and throwing them into garbage sacks. He said he was nicknamed a Can Sacker. The next guy said that he soaked corks in a special brine at the Wine distillery and that he was nicknamed a Cork Soaker. They then turned to the last guy and asked him what he did and he replied: I'm republican Senator Larry Craig of Idaho and they nicknamed me The Real McCoy

It is amazing the jokes you hear around the water cooler at work when the women folk are gathered all around it joking around. I had to modify it for the forum because they talk so dirty.
--the only adults who are never depressed: chuckleheads, California surfers, and fundamentalist Christians who believe they have had a personal encounter with Jesus and are saved once and for all. Would you trade your depression to become any of these?

ben
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Postby ben » Wed Nov 21, 2007 3:38 am

Saw Robert Zemeckis' Beowulf last night. Not in IMAX (3D) though. Nice CGI but it's really not an advancement compared to Final Fantasy:The Spirits Within and Polar Express. The story was acceptable but not really great. I couldn't see why Beowulf was England's greatest mythical hero. While I am amazed at the lighting and shadow effects, the storm, the Angelina Jolie temptation, the dragon, it still doesn't capture my appreciation. The facial emotion and movements are simply flat and unnatural. I couldn't sympathize with any character at all. Amidst all the actions, it felt so hollow. There's really no connection between audience and the characters. You might want to watch it in 3D and be trilled by trying to dodge swords, arrows and flying body parts but if you're looking for more intellectual or emotional experiences, you won't find it here.
Always look on the bright side of life.

rahau
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Postby rahau » Thu Nov 22, 2007 4:05 am

I’ve been on a documentary kick for the past several months. Some of the better ones I’ve seen are “Enron – The Smartest Guys in the Room,” “Outfoxed” (an expose of Fox News); and “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” (a look at contemporary anti-Semitism).

But the most memorable was “Crossing The Line,” about a man named Joe Dresnok. He’s an instantly recognizable type for most Americans – the guy you see in an average bar, a heavyset, alcoholic, cigarette-voiced sixtysomething, offering up his ill-informed opinions to anyone within earshot. The difference is that Dresnok has lived in North Korea since 1962.

Originally from Virginia, his parents split when he was five, and he spent the next several years bouncing from one abusive foster home to another. When his father remarried, the stepmother announced she did not want Joe living with them. His father put him in an orphanage, promising to return for him someday. He never did.

Dresnok joined the army when he turned seventeen, and got married soon after. Neither move panned out. When he was stationed in Germany, his wife left him for another man. Transferred to South Korea, he fell in love with a Korean woman. One August day in 1962, he left his post without permission to see the woman. The next day, his commanding officer ordered him to report for a court-martial.

His marriage was over. His family had abandoned him. He faced a dishonorable discharge and possible jail time. There was only one thing left to do. He “crossed the line,” and went over the border to North Korea.

At first, things were no better in the DPRK. He and three other American defectors were viewed with suspicion and hate by most North Koreans. They sought asylum in the Soviet embassy, but were denied. With no where else to go, Dresnok vowed to find some way to fit in.

He soon found it. At that time, the current North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-Il, fancied himself the George Lucas of North Korea. He cast Dresnok and the others in a twenty-part propaganda film about the Korean War called “Nameless Heroes.” Dresnok and the others played the roles of the eeev-yil Americans.

That did the trick. The film made him famous in the DPRK. He married a Romanian woman. The evidence suggests she was kidnapped by the North Korean government. Although he talks about her quite a bit, he never produces a single photo of her. Recently, the Romanian government released several photos of her, and she bears a striking resemblance to a woman who acted in several North Korean films alongside Dresnok. She died in 1997. They had two sons, one of whom is interviewed at length.

Dresnok says he is happy now, and would never return to America. He’s probably telling the truth. He has a stable family life, something he never had in America. The DPRK government provides him with an apartment and a stipend. His new wife, the daughter of an African diplomat and a Korean woman, provided him with a third beautiful son.

Yet there are moments in the film that make one wonder whether he really loves his life in North Korea as much as he says. When the filmmakers show him photos of his childhood friends, there is a look of deep sadness in his eyes. (And a look of childlike wonder at the laptop computer displaying the photos.) He spends his days aimlessly fishing in the Taedong River, chain-smoking and drinking to excess. His doctors have repeatedly told him he will die soon if he doesn’t curtail his drinking and smoking.

The film also gives westerners a rare and fascinating look at Pyongyang, a city of stunningly beautiful people and stunningly hideous Soviet architecture. Although Dresnok and his family are among the elite and favored, they are still subject to almost-daily power outages. Yet even during the times when the people’s power is cut off, the monuments to Kim Il-Sung and The Revolution remain brightly lit.
Last edited by rahau on Mon Aug 25, 2008 6:42 am, edited 2 times in total.

ben
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Postby ben » Thu Nov 22, 2007 11:17 am

Saw Unknown the other week. It stars Jim Caviezal, Greg Kinnear, Joe Pantoliano and Barry Pepper and directed by Simon Brand. Like it's title, this movie was quite an unknown but rightly deserved some attention. The film uses a lot of flashbacks and is heavily loaded with twists. Five seemingly unrelated guys woke up in an old abandoned warehouse with a rather advance locked door. One guy was tied to a chair, another was shot and hanging on a railing by a handcuff, and the others sprawled on the ground or some place else. None of them have any recollection of who they are and what they are doing there. Due to some chemical leak, they have all suffered temporary amnesia. As the event went further, they realized that they are all involved in a kidnap-for-ransom situation. With the creeping in of doubt, they start to decipher who are the victims and who are the kidnappers. But one thing they known is that they can't get out of the warehouse unless they all work together.

It's not an action packed movie, it's got a somewhat boring pace but not exactly allowing you to stand up to get another diet coke. (Hehe, couldn't help it.) Acting was quite good, it leaves you guessing who should be trusted and who should be despised. You end up sympathizing with one character then shifting again and again as each character starts to remember who they are. You will loved the twists. Overall, despite the somewhat boring pace at some instances, this film deserved not to be an unknown.
Always look on the bright side of life.

ben
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Postby ben » Mon Dec 03, 2007 10:59 am

Aside from the "spinning chick" (as Ang Mo fondly calls my avatar), I've been following the movies of another South Korean female actor. Moon Geun-Young, who had impressed me with angelic beauty and her acting skills despite being only 20 as of this year. So last weekend, I watched another of her film, and actually ventured into one movie genre that I would normally stay away from... horror movies. Bugger.

A Tale of Two Sisters (2003), starring Jung-ah Yum as the stepmother, Su-jeong Im as Soo-mi the older sister, and Moon Geun-Young as Soo-yeun the younger sister.

Some notes regarding the movie, it's actually inspired by a local Korean folktale, "Janghwa Hongreyon-jon ( 'Rose Flower, Red Lotus')" which had been adapted into several movies before. And, Hollywood had begun production in 2004 which was delayed but will probably be releasing it in 2008.

Despite scaring me senseless, I have to say this is one great movie. Superb acting, great story, excellent twists, great cinematography, great music. It's a chilling, scary and simply intelligent film. I would have loved to watch it again but I'm such a sissy when it comes to scary movies. It's a psychological horror film about a rebellious and frustrated girl, her meek kid sister and their "evil" step-mother in a haunted house. Convenient eh? Ghost and hatred going hand in hand. This movie would require a lot of analysis or you'll easily be swept in confusion.
Always look on the bright side of life.

Ang Mo
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Postby Ang Mo » Tue Dec 04, 2007 6:04 am

Two movies: Thirty Six Hours with James Garner, Eva Marie Saint, and Rod Taylor. Excellent film about Garner, an American Intelligence Officer who is captured by the Nazi's shortly before the invasion at Normandy. The Germans have recreated an American Hospital and explain to Garner when he awakes that he has been in a coma for six years and has suffered amnesia. They have dyed his hair grey, made him temporarily near sighted through the use of drugs, and explain to him it is 1950 and the Allies have won the war. They try to trick him into telling when the exact date and place of the Allied invasion will begin. Garner catches on to the trick and and with the help of others, foils the German plan. Hilarious role by John Banner who played Sgt. Schultz in Hogan's Heroes. Also a cameo appearance by James Doohan better known as Scotty on Star Trek. He plays a Scotsman in this one so it was not to hard for him to do.

Home from the Hills with Robert Mitchum, Eleanor Parker, George Peppard, and George Hamilton. Interesting Family drama about a rich family Patriarch played by Robert Mitchum who is infamous for his adulteries and infidelities, his wife who despises him played well by Parker (She played the witchy Baroness in the Sound of Music) and their son played by an extremely young George Hamilton, and Mitchum's illegitimate son played by George Peppard. A lot of twists and turns and a real emotional roller coaster but turns out with a fairly happy ending. Peppard steals the show. Probably his best performance of all time. Beautiful color cinematography.
--the only adults who are never depressed: chuckleheads, California surfers, and fundamentalist Christians who believe they have had a personal encounter with Jesus and are saved once and for all. Would you trade your depression to become any of these?

byranbu
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Postby byranbu » Tue Jan 01, 2008 3:33 am

One movie worth mentioning, “Manufacturing Dissent’. I’m sure most here won’t agree with me but I find it quite informative. It is interesting how half truths and creative editing can fool so many people. How can intelligent people take Mr. Moore’s fact twisting “documentaries” as truth without checking the facts? :?
Ok, you can now take me out back and shoot me. :D I choose to not follow but stumble in the dark on my own.
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rahau
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Postby rahau » Fri Jan 04, 2008 4:02 am

I'll make you a deal, BB. I'll watch "Manufacturing Dissent" if you'll watch "Outfoxed." Sound good?

byranbu
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Postby byranbu » Fri Jan 04, 2008 5:22 am

You got a deal my friend. I will put it next on my blockbuster list. I seriously doubt that this will change your opinion or mine but it is always good to be willing to see things from the other side.
I feel like I am in a very small minority here on the forum but that’s OK we all do agree on some things ( music). Am I the only conservative out here? Am I really all by myself? HELLO? Hello? hello? :cry:
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ben
Getting Stranger
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Postby ben » Fri Jan 04, 2008 5:55 am

Saw a great one this week. Before The Devil Knows You're Dead, stars Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ethan Hawke, and Albert Finney. About a couple of dysfunctional brothers who plotted on robbing their parents' jewelry store. And then a chain of unfortunate events ensue. Superb and powerful acting from the 3. Made me wonder why Hoffman and Hawke didn't get any Globe nominations for their efforts here. This one is highly recommended.
Always look on the bright side of life.

byranbu
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Postby byranbu » Sun Jan 20, 2008 7:33 pm

Hey rahau I did my part and watched “Outfoxed” did you get a chance to see “Manufacturing Dissent”? I have always thought that “fair and balanced” was inaccurate since they do lean to the right but not as far as the rest lean to the left. Also O’Reilly is a bully sometimes and does spin things. Was there anything you could agree with in my movie?
Maybe I will see you at the Missy Higgins show next month. Good music is one thing we can agree on.
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Ang Mo
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Postby Ang Mo » Sun Jan 20, 2008 8:41 pm

So many good movies are available on DVD in Europe that are not formatted for U.S. DVD players. My brother bought a European DVD player that can play these films. It came with a adaptor plug to account for the difference in voltage. The DVD was fantastic. The movie is a classic, called Run for the Sun starring Richard Widmark as a reclusive writer in retirement in a small town in Acapulco. A female journalist wants to find out why he stopped writing and attempts to get the story for her magazine. When Widmark is flying her to Mexico City their plane crashes. They are rescued by an Englishman (Trevor Howard) and two of his German companions. Widmark soon disovers the Englishman is a Nazi sympathizer who switched sides during the war. Widmark escapes with the woman and the three Nazi's pursue them through the Mexican jungle. A great movie loosely based on the short story, The Most Dangerous Game. Very well done and entertaining film. Excellent color and cinematography as well.
--the only adults who are never depressed: chuckleheads, California surfers, and fundamentalist Christians who believe they have had a personal encounter with Jesus and are saved once and for all. Would you trade your depression to become any of these?

byranbu
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Postby byranbu » Sun Jan 20, 2008 9:07 pm

http://cgi.ebay.com/RUN-FOR-THE-SUN-195 ... dZViewItem

Never underestimate the power of eBay, also one PAL copy and many lobby cards and photos. Sounds like a good movie that has been lost in time.
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Ang Mo
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Postby Ang Mo » Mon Jan 21, 2008 7:38 am

Thanks for the ebay tips but my brother had already purchased the DVD player and DVD already. Perhaps someone else will venture into the world of old classic films though and I welcome that.

On the "Outfoxed" film I was more interested by the fact that they cut loose their reporter Jon Du Pre who covered the Reagan Library during the time of Reagan's death. Apparently Fox was upset by him because he filmed what happened that day and how hardly anybody showed up with the exception of some school children. If I remember correctly they wanted him to take film of another event with people and splice it in to make it look like they were at the library mourning Reagan's death. I think Fox fired Du Pre for not capturing the story correctly. To me that was the great paradox of the film. Du Pre is a Mormon, a Brigham Young Unversity graduate, most likely a Republican, most Mormons are, maybe even has a Mitt Romney sticker on his car, and yet he loses his job for not fabricating a news story. Hilarious.

Du Pre commented:
“We weren’t necessarily, as it was told to us, a newsgathering organization so much as we were a proponent of a point of view … we were there to reinforce a constituency.”






[/quote]
--the only adults who are never depressed: chuckleheads, California surfers, and fundamentalist Christians who believe they have had a personal encounter with Jesus and are saved once and for all. Would you trade your depression to become any of these?

byranbu
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Postby byranbu » Wed Jan 30, 2008 8:13 am

I have been debating if I should respond to your concerns about Jon Du Pre and his being cut loose from FNC. His contract was not renewed in 2002 because, as his personnel file states, he was considered to be a weak field correspondent and could not do live shots.
Yes I do realize that it is his words against their words, I was not present when this all happened, were you? I personally have worked with people who have been fired from their job and I don’t know of many who were willing to admit that they were cut loose because they weren’t good enough. Most people bitterly blame someone else rather than accept the responsibility.
Both side can claim their side of the truth and back it up with their own facts so you can’t make an accurate decision on the “facts”. Lets look at how this movie was put together, much of the audio clips from Fox were made to sound like they were being played through old cheap TV speakers. This is an old trick used in advertising to convince you that something is bad. If this is a true documentary why use this to help persuade the viewing audience? Hannity is a conservative and he and Colmes always make joke about it at the end of the show. Why was Colmes jokes about conservatives not shown but Hannity’s counting down the days until Bush was reelected shown over and over again? Taking small sound bites out of context and playing them repeatedly to make your point is also a good way to distort the truth. These tactics are used to sell soap, deodorant, and canned soap every day, if you are presenting the audience with facts in a “documentary” you shouldn’t have to use these tactics.
OK I could go on but I realize it will not change anybody’s mind so I will now drop it.
I did see an excellent movie recently that I will recommend to all. “Journey From The Fall”. Inspired by the true stories of Vietnamese refugees who fled their land after the fall of Saigon—and those who were forced to stay behind, Journey From The Fall follows one family’s struggle for freedom.
myspace.com/hbkake Be my friend


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