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Watched the Fathom Events / Ghiblifest presentation of Kiki's Delivery Service last night. It's the first time I've seen KDS. I liked it a bunch, and it is, unsurprisingly, beautifully animated.

 

Like much of Miyazaki's ouvre, it's about a young girl discovering her place in the world, with a touch of magic thrown in. 

 

I find it very interesting in comparison to the most contemporaneous of Miyazaki/Ghibli's works, My Neighbor Totoro, because they're both visually beautiful films, but the strengths of their scripts are almost opposite: KDS has an almost disappointingly skeletal plot but some really interesting characters, while Totoro has a plot I just love to get lost in with characters that are fairly cookie-cutter.

 

I should also mention the animated short they've attached to this... It's an adorable French piece about forest creatures cooperating to hold a bike race in order to outrun winter, and I loved it.

 

KDS was a welcome spot of peace and love; if you're free this Wednesday night, Fathom Events is showing the dubbed version at select theaters, and I'd recommend it if you enjoy watching stories about people who want to help each other.

 

(And more Ghibli is coming... Fathom presents something wonderful every month, but October's the must-see, if you can only see one: Spirited Away.)

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Went and saw Once Upon a Time in Hollywood this past weekend. I am not sure I liked or hated it. It felt very Tarantino with meandering dialogue that went no where and cameos from various alum. Not his best, but I enjoyed elements of it.

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On 7/22/2019 at 2:50 PM, Beowulfthehunter said:

Saw Stubber last weekend, it was better than it had ANY right to be. I think I might actually like Batista more than the rock in terms of wrestlers trying to act.

I saw that on Wednesday, and laughed a heck of a lot. Super awesome movie, Batista is definitely a charisma machine. I was surprised by the very minor role of Karen Gillan, though. I love her, so I was sad that she was barely in it.

On 7/30/2019 at 11:14 PM, Sanael said:

Watched the Fathom Events / Ghiblifest presentation of Kiki's Delivery Service last night. It's the first time I've seen KDS. I liked it a bunch, and it is, unsurprisingly, beautifully animated.

 

Like much of Miyazaki's ouvre, it's about a young girl discovering her place in the world, with a touch of magic thrown in. 

 

I find it very interesting in comparison to the most contemporaneous of Miyazaki/Ghibli's works, My Neighbor Totoro, because they're both visually beautiful films, but the strengths of their scripts are almost opposite: KDS has an almost disappointingly skeletal plot but some really interesting characters, while Totoro has a plot I just love to get lost in with characters that are fairly cookie-cutter.

 

I should also mention the animated short they've attached to this... It's an adorable French piece about forest creatures cooperating to hold a bike race in order to outrun winter, and I loved it.

 

KDS was a welcome spot of peace and love; if you're free this Wednesday night, Fathom Events is showing the dubbed version at select theaters, and I'd recommend it if you enjoy watching stories about people who want to help each other.

 

(And more Ghibli is coming... Fathom presents something wonderful every month, but October's the must-see, if you can only see one: Spirited Away.)

I like Kiki and Totoro way more than Spirited Away, TBH. My general impression of Ghibli is that the earlier work is better, because it is less ambitious. Later Miyazaki movies, like Spirited Away, Mononoke, Ponyo... they really fail to stick the landing. They have good ideas, and then just sort of rush to wrap everything up. Spirited Away just sort of doesn't know what to do with No Face, for example, so suddenly it's just "hey, why don't you stay here?" and that part of the plot is gone. Earlier works had lower key stories, so the wrap up wasn't nearly so much of an issue.

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5 hours ago, Disciple of Sakura said:

 

I like Kiki and Totoro way more than Spirited Away, TBH. My general impression of Ghibli is that the earlier work is better, because it is less ambitious. Later Miyazaki movies, like Spirited Away, Mononoke, Ponyo... they really fail to stick the landing. They have good ideas, and then just sort of rush to wrap everything up. Spirited Away just sort of doesn't know what to do with No Face, for example, so suddenly it's just "hey, why don't you stay here?" and that part of the plot is gone. Earlier works had lower key stories, so the wrap up wasn't nearly so much of an issue.

I can see that argument. I don't even have much of a counter for it, if I'm honest. I do think the weakest part of any Miyazaki film is probably the end, because he frequently just gets to the end of a story and stops. Kiki, for example, gets to a big, emotional climax, and credits roll immediately. There's a lovely montage of a few of the characters' denouements under the credits that's beautifully animated, but there are still a bunch of questions left unanswered. And you're right that this is MORE frustrating in the later movies, where the stakes are a bit higher, but it's ultimately an issue with most of them.

 

And I don't know if I think Spirited Away is the BEST Ghibli movie (if forced to choose, my favorite is Mononoke), but I do think it's the first one I'd point someone to if they've never seen anything Ghibli.

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On 7/21/2019 at 11:23 PM, redambrosia said:

Watched Shazam today. Very enjoyable, good story, good acting, a lot less stupid than the trailers made it look.

Shazam! was a whole lot better than those trailers - to the point where one of the Warner execs actually apologized for them.

 

I think somebody in marketing decided that folks would want it to be an Adam Sandler movie.... (Yeah, that pretty much means that someone in marketing was an idiot.)

 

The Auld Grump - we are at the Waiting for Pizza portion of our game night....

 

 

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The biggest problem with the Shazam! trailers was that there was no hint at how freaking scary some of it would be. I'd almost convinced my 9 year-old who scares easily to go see it, before he decided to be difficult and refuse. My wife and I wanted to see it anyway, so we went and saw it, and are really glad we didn't bring him. We'd all have had to leave the theatre after that boardroom scene.

 

The first trailer looked bad, but later ones looked pretty good. They just didn't convey how freaking dark the movie might get in some moments.

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Eye of the Beholder: The Art of Dungeons & Dragons. 99 cent on the ol' A-zon right now, so I gave it a whirl. It turned out pretty great. Got worried from the opening it was going to wander aimlessly around recent stuff, but it spent the first hour with the early editions. Nice interviews with and input from the living lead artists from the TSR era. Little scattershot after that--would've loved more on the 3x era--but a ton of great art all the way through this and some decent amount of cool history and stories. Would love to see more stuff like this chronicling the early years of D&D.

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Score! Megan and I managed to snag a DVD of Pufnstuf - the movie of H. R. Pufnstuf from 1970....

 

They don't make 'em like that anymore!

 

The Auld Grump

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On 7/30/2019 at 11:37 PM, Beowulfthehunter said:

Went and saw Once Upon a Time in Hollywood this past weekend. I am not sure I liked or hated it. It felt very Tarantino with meandering dialogue that went no where and cameos from various alum. Not his best, but I enjoyed elements of it.

Thanks, I had heard some good things about it, and it has two good lead actors, but I wasn't convinced by the trailers. 

 

We saw Hobbs and Shaw.  It was about what I expected: lots of action, chase scenes, fight scenes, explosions, and cussing.  Johnson and Statham do their thing, reprising characters from Furious 7.  By the way, you needn't have seen any of the Fast and Furious movies, this one stands alone with only vague passing references to the two characters having worked together in the past.  Idris Elba plays a stone faced and self proclaimed "bad guy", and Vanessa Kirby is amazing as a high energy, high kicking MI6 agent.  There's a few cameos, Helen Mirren was delightful, as always.  Unfortunately  Ryan Reynolds also makes appearances and kind of ruined it for me.  He was great as Deadpool, but it's the only schtick he knows, and it doesn't work with  the style of this movie.  ANY other actor would have been an improvement. 

 

Some people brought young kids to the movie. They were bored and running up and down the stairs by mid point.  The tone is a little darker and more violent than your average F&F film.  Some of the fight scenes are more graphic.   There's also a flickering/flashing lights fight sequence  that might be a trigger for those who are sensitive to such things.  (The theater we went to also showed some very scary and violent horror movie trailers before the main show)

 

See this movie if you like action flicks, want to see Dwayne Johnson without his shirt, or get a close view of Vanessa Kirby's legs.  Don't go expecting scintillating dialog or deeply thoughtful writing.   Even Johnson and Statham's  smack talk gets old after the first few scenes.   Have some popcorn, turn off your brain and enjoy the ride. 

 

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Hubby and I just finished watching Us. It was amazingly good. Jordan Peele is really good at making tense movies.

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9 hours ago, redambrosia said:

Hubby and I just finished watching Us. It was amazingly good. Jordan Peele is really good at making tense movies.

Us was a really stirring movie. Really weird, but really well done. I wish I could talk my wife into watching it.

 

I rewatched Searching the other night with my wife and my mom, who hadn't seen it before. It's still such an excellently made movie, with a really well structured cinematography. Watched Alita last night, as well. I saw it in theatres, but the effects really are mind blowing in that movie.

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Watched Mission of Honor about polish pilots in the RAF during WW2 last night. Interesting subject but not a great movie. Still worth it if you're interested in WW2 like I am. Ticks me off when I hear stories like theirs. Fought, bled and died for Britain and then the survivors got deported after the end of the war.

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14 hours ago, Disciple of Sakura said:

Us was a really stirring movie. Really weird, but really well done. I wish I could talk my wife into watching it.

I'm not usually into that sort of movie, but after watching Get Out, I'm sold on Peele's suspense thrillers. They hit all the right notes for me, tension, horror, sadness, and occasional moments of hilarity. 

 

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Watched Mortal Engines over the weekend.

Thought it was pretty good, not the most accurate adaptation, but I think they did the best they could getting the main points of the story covered in the time they had.

Hopefully, in a few years, someone will try doing a big budget miniseries version.

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31 minutes ago, aku-chan said:

Watched Mortal Engines over the weekend.

Thought it was pretty good, not the most accurate adaptation, but I think they did the best they could getting the main points of the story covered in the time they had.

Hopefully, in a few years, someone will try doing a big budget miniseries version.

 

 Funny coincidence, I watched that yesterday too. Better than I expected, as you say the director did try to get the main points of the book across. Rather a shame that Hollywood wasn't brave enough to depict Hester as badly disfigured as she is in the book. (But still a moral person.)

 

 A television series of the whole quartet would be splendid, if given the right budget. The main characters do grow and change a lot. Serious actors would be required to do it justice.

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