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Messages - Crewe

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1
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: Today at 10:56:57 AM »
Phantom of the Opera 1925 (Silent film)

Not much to say here. I watched it because it's deemed a classic.
The short version is that the Phantom lives in the bowels of the Opera House in Paris that were used as torture chambers.
It's implied our Phantom was one such victim, hence the mask to hide his disfigurement
He falls in love with the voice and thereby singer, Christine Dase. She is mesmerized by his passion for her. He sends threatening notes to management to give her the leading role or suffer dire consequences.
They dont, he does, then she meets him. She's promised everything as long as she foresakes all others, including her current beau.
Ultimately she finds out what he is and seeks to flee.
I skipped over some other plot points but that should get you going.
This was a one timer for me, but glad I watched it, but I doubt everyone else would be.



2
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 26, 2021, 10:38:18 PM »
Repulsion 1960
Catherine Deneuve
We first see Carole Ledoux (Deneuve) at her job in a nail salon, her mind not in the present as she has spaced out mid manicure to a customer.
In a rather long exposition, we follow her life via some closeup tracking shots as she moves through her day which consists of going to work or home to an apartment she shares with her sister Helene (Yvonne Furneaux)
We know straight away she has an aversion to Colin (John Fraser) who has more than a passing interest in her, as well as her sisters new beau (Ian Hendry)
The film graduates from a spry middle of the road tale to a psychological horror with an exceptional slow burn.
Becoming more catatonic and delusional as we progress, we ride with carol as we struggle to discover the cause.
I enjoyed this one a great deal. Recommended.

The Island of Lost Souls 1932
Charles Laughton, Bela Lugosi, Richard Arlen

The first film based off of the book, the Island of Dr. Moreau.
Edward Parker (Arlen) is one of many rescued fro a sinking ship. He telegraphs his fiance to let her know where he is and is headed.
After a row with the Captain, he is unceremoniously dumped over board on to a boat to which the aforementioned Captain had just made a scheduled delivery.
Dr. Moreau and his assistant, Montgomery welcome Parker to stay on his island and say they will return him to a pier the next morning.
Parker notices strange half man, wolves and swine across the island but finds it curious, not yet alarming.
Moreau explains to Parker that in London he began experimenting with accelerated evolution. Beginning with plants, then moving to animals. His secret was leaked and he was exiled. He then set up shop on this remote island.
Secretly wanting to further his discoveries, he sends Lota, the only female on the island, to interact with Parker. He wants to see if this panther, evolved in to woman, can emote as a real woman.
Mean time, the fiance investigates and discovers where the Captain had dumped her betrothed and off she goes with a sailor to fetch him.
They arrive and are welcomed by Moreau until things take a turn, and Ill leave you there.

I didnt find anything revolutionary in the film making here although there were some great shots using lights and shadows.
The story still holds, but I cant put myself in a 1932 frame of mind to really be blown away by this film. I will say I am glad I watched it because it is a classic. I did like it but I didnt love it. 
It is only an hour and ten minutes, so if you can spare it, Id say give it a look only because film history demands you do so. I promise, youve seen worse.

3
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 24, 2021, 09:43:45 PM »
The Innocents 1961
Deborah Kerr, Pamela Franklin, Martin Stephens


Ms Giddens (Kerr) is an inexperienced young woman obtaining her first real opportunity, governess for a wealthy man with a niece and nephew he wants to know nothing about.
The previous governess had died, tragically and suddenly and this is where we begin.
This film is atop many all time horror lists and thats why it was on my see list. This is the best sort of horror film for several reasons. It doesnt mix and match tropes and genres, i.e. jump scares, which certainly have their place and can be effective, but not here.
This film is all story, character and atmosphere. And it's all creepy.
Giddens quickly notices slightly odd occurrences along with the two younglings with curious mutterings and behaviors.
The other staff, primarily Ms. Grose (Megs Jenkins) waves off Ms Giddens worries, however, she does seem to be an ally if not a device for the audience to learn more of the story.
After witnessing apparitions, coupled with everything else, our new governess begins to unravel, revealing much more about herself in the process.
Ambiguity is the theme in this film and Ill tell you after having watched it, Im wanting to watch it again.

My Halloween list is still about 25-30 movies long, so I know I wont get to all of them, but I really want to see about 15 more and given this is the last week of the month....I dunno.... lol


4
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 24, 2021, 01:36:17 PM »
The Stranger
Edward G. Robinson, Orson Welles

Film noir cat and mouse film with a heavy dose of Nazi hunting in post war America.
EGR is essentially a Nazi hunter, akin to Hans Landa, not without the same style in some scenes.
There's quite a bit of high and low angle shots in the film which I found interesting and matches the pace and the storytelling.
I really enjoyed this

The Invisible Man
Claude Rains

This is a fun one to watch. If for nothing else, the manner in which special effects were applied in 1933 were quite impressive.
Jack Griffin is a scientist who stumbled upon an invisibility potion. The film opens well beyond this stage though. He has temporarily abandoned his fiance who is unaware of his advancements, in order to find the antidote.
Griffin however, is unaware this potion has adversely affected his mind leading him to criminal, anarchist ideals.
Confiding in his former colleague, in his permanent invisible state, Griffin sets forth with his progressively unhinged madness, and sense of humor.



5
Baseball / Re: 2021 playoffs
« on: October 23, 2021, 03:50:40 PM »
Yankees lost AND then the Cards lost so this has been great so far. Now I'd just like to see the White Sox get tossed and then hopefully get a Dodgers/Astros World Series because that would just be amazing.  :D

Astros have done their part  :D

Not for nothing, but I absolutely love the Boston fans calling Houston cheaters lol
The self righteous high morality attitude of these tiara wearing low IQ baseball "fans" really is amusing af.



 

6
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 23, 2021, 03:43:00 PM »
Frankenstein

Im trudging through the older horror classics as you might guess and this one ahs been on the list a while.
Im glad I watched it and it had some good camera movement and directorial style especially for the 30's.
I can see how it would be received in the infancy of film,
however, to me, and I know Im in the minority here, but the entertainment just doesnt carry over to today.

House on Haunted Hill

Vincent Price

This fella owns a haunted house and has a brother who was killed there along with 4 others over recent years by ghosts, he says.
He then rents it out to Vincent Price who organizes a dare to 5 randomly selected strangers. Make it through the night and receive 10k.
This film has a great aura of the Victorian age and the characters fit really well in this haunted house scenario.
Lively and believable they come to life and Vincent Price demands your interest and attention with his presence.
Old school storytelling, well acted and directed, but do yourself a favor and watch the black and white version.





7
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 17, 2021, 12:31:22 AM »
Freaks 1932

Not a horror nor a mystery so Im not sure how this ended up on my Halloween list. Nonetheless, this was prior to the Hays Code in Hollywood, so Tod Browning told a story featuring a topic close to his heart, circus freaks. What made this so, rebuked at the time was the fact he used real, pardon the term, freaks. The film had the opposite effect of him wanting them to be accepted however. It was even banned in some places.
Cleopatra (Olga Baclanova) is the normal one who was in a romance with circus Hercules but after a spat, he boots her. She learns of an inheritance that Hans (a midget) is set to receive. After orchestrating a marriage and after much convincing by Hans, the other "freaks" accept her. It's overheard her telling Hercules she slowly plans to poison him to death then take his money and run off with her muscle man.
Hans' pals plot revenge.
its barely an hour and unless you are really in to seeing what was offensive in 1932, I'd pass.

Peeping Tom 1960

This film is about fear, psychological damage due to abuse.
Mark Lewis is an aspiring film maker and photographer, working as a focus tech on film and on his own as a photographer of girlie pictures, calendar type fodder in his spare time.
The set is mostly a film set/studio and his boyhood home which is so large, he has to let out rooms to boarders. One of which is to Helen. A young girl interested in Mark which is then furthered by her interest in his work and they find common ground within her profession.
No real unnecessary dialogue, plot driven and real as the characters help bring this film to life.
The story is not convoluted, however, seeing the world through the damaged (camera) eyes of our protagonist adds poignant tension as does the film noir score.
The production value and art direction is quite jolly considering the subject matter and a few scenes handle the contrast brilliantly. We get a captivating conflict with well directed and talented actors who lead us through this story with continued suspense and interest.
I really liked this one. Give it a go

The Conjuring 2
Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga
We follow the Warrens again picking up not too long after the Conjuring,
Minor opening spoiler here,
Spoiler: show
I liked the way they told the story of Amityville in such a short time, because honestly we didnt need another Amityville story.

At home, we find Ed and Lorraine have their own little minor skirmish with demonry. meanwhile, in England, the Hodgson's are battling something much more fierce.
Eventually the Warren's are asked to witness on behalf of the church because they cannot intervene without solid proof, which has yet to be provided.
Meanwhile, we see the Warrens on TV panel shows being ridiculed by naysayers causing Lorraine to want to take a break. You know how that's gonna go.
The Conjuring films are based on true paranormal events and it's handled with such balance. We see Ed and Lorraine as a genuine couple that understands skeptics, that freely admit you have to take a leap of faith to help people and that makes the characters real. Patrick and Vera have such chemistry on screen. I really feel them, the love, the compassion they project and it really lifts the films.
The direction by James Wan continues to be slick. Using terrific tracking and dolly shots almost continuously for consecutive scenes really flows together and creates and smooth pace for the film. I can only assume that some of these were drone shots because they were so quietly impressive in my mind, I really enjoyed the experience.
you cannot have a horror film without a great score. There's no iconic Jaws or Friday the 13th theme here but you really have the essence of a modern horror film. Im getting long here, but I really liked every aspect of this movie. The tone, the theme, sound design, artistic direction, and maybe my love of the 70's is showing here, but it's always nostalgic af for me.
There is a negative though....
Spoiler: show
The final showdown was simplified too much. It felt rushed, too easy to conquer. I realize getting there wasn't easy, but still. And the dramatic hanging on of the child with the curtain. I have to admit, that's the only time I felt "out of the moment" and, the epilogue was just a bit too Disney for me

I liked it, a lot. Not as much as the original, but only a small step separates them.
Check this one out too, unless you have already and Im just last...





8
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 15, 2021, 10:20:59 PM »
Sisters 1973
Margot Kidder, Jennifer Salt

En route to his Halloween brilliance, Brian DePalma made on homage to Hitchcock called Sisters.
The short version is, there were fantastic shots in this film which is most certainly a product of it's time, and the story is a good one. However, I dont give it quite the ups most do, including Roger Ebert. I liked it, but it just played longer than it was, to me anyway. I liked it, but didnt love it. If you are a Hitchcock fan, DePalma fan or a film buff, then yes, certainly check it out. Otherwise, leave it for a really rainy day

9
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 15, 2021, 01:07:00 PM »
10/11
Coherence 2013
Emily Baldoni, Hugo Armstrong

I don't know how this one managed to stay under my radar until now.
To say this is a mind bender is an understatement.
Em and a group of friends gather for a dinner party as a comet is passing closely over Earth.
Malevolence ensues.
Watch this one

Invasion of the Body Snatchers 1956
Kevin McCarthy, Dana Wynter

The second version of this story reflects the times, ala McCarthyism.
An allegorical tale of mysterious pods appearing in a small town who morph in to people, taking over their bodies and brains while they sleep.
They talk like, act like and have all of the correct mannerisms of those they snatch, but, are void of emotion, compassion, love. Which is how the ruskies were defined in those years.
Dr. Bennell and his to be SO Becky discover the imposters and literally run for their lives while trying to find an ally that has yet to be snatched.
Great tension in a 50's film that still holds today

10
that wasnt a complaint, I was really asking if you were waiting on me for an action lol

I didnt take it as one. I was letting you know I am working on it and asking for patience is all :)

patience is something I can continually give  :D

11
that wasnt a complaint, I was really asking if you were waiting on me for an action lol

12
Are we in limbo prior to season starting or is there an action I should be completing?

13
Fantasy Leagues / Re: MNCAA discussion
« on: October 12, 2021, 11:33:39 AM »
no objection

14
Chit Chat / Re: The Movies Thread
« on: October 11, 2021, 03:29:34 PM »
So, Im rehashing my Halloween thread from last year.
There's not much action here so I may just edit this post as I go, or post as I watch them. Either way, it's easier than writing out one huge wall of text covering my October adventures again.
These will be quick drive by reviews but Ill be glad to discuss if anyone likes discussing the particular films.
So far...

The Guilty
Jakob Cedergren (not the Jake Gillnwhatshisface version)
This film takes place in one setting. A police emergency call center. Jakob Cedergren is demoted to said center temporarily pending a hearing regarding an arrest/situation/shooting he was involved in.
he single handedly carries this film. Sounds trite since he's really the only main actor, but it could have easily failed, but it didnt. The audience gets to ride along as he tries to reslove a real time crisis unfolding in his world as well as ours.

The Descent
Shauna Macdonald, Natalie Mendoza
If you are the least bit claustrophobic, stay away.
A group of friends meetup for a spelunking adventure, which is exactly what they get, and then some.
This film tries to do away with the familiar tropey characters in like films and with little exposition. It's pretty much in you go. This is a horror film and if you ahve surround sound, I highly suggest it for this one.

I See You
Helen Hunt, John Tenney
The Harpers are going through a rough patch. Jackie (Hunt) cheated on her detective husband Greg (Tenney) and while they try to save their marriage, their son, Connor (Judah Lewis) is quite antagonistic towards mom, understandsbly so.
Minor, ok, some minor, but still, unexplained hauntings happen within the house and in the meantime, Greg is brought in to a missing child case, one akin to a similar one he solved some time ago in which the predator is still serving time.
Ill stop here for spoilers, however, Ill add, ultimately, I liked the film and would recommend it, if for nothing else, the narrative structure.
Spoiler: show
When we revisit the story through other characters eyes, they director omitted a significant scene. At that point, I was confounded. My focus shifted to that point, trying to recall what actually happened and in an attempt to reconstruct the timeline in my head, I missed what I was watching and hearing. Looking back, I see why it was done, but I found it sort of clunky, much like the first act. To me, I just cant fathom that instances like in the early part of the film would just be ignored by reasonable characters. It felt forced. That plus the fact that helen Hunt was wasted in this film. You could have used any B movie actress and plugged her in that role and it would have been fine.
The story as a whole is what keeps my review positive.


10/11
Coherence 2013
Emily Baldoni, Hugo Armstrong

I don't know how this one managed to stay under my radar until now.
To say this is a mind bender is an understatement.
Em and a group of friends gather for a dinner party as a comet is passing closely over Earth.
Malevolence ensues.
Watch this one



15
Baseball / Re: 2021 playoffs
« on: October 11, 2021, 03:02:26 PM »
Yankees lost AND then the Cards lost so this has been great so far. Now I'd just like to see the White Sox get tossed and then hopefully get a Dodgers/Astros World Series because that would just be amazing.  :D

I would love that too.

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