Movies that DON'T suck.

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Ben

Post by Ben » Wed Jan 29, 2003 4:51 pm

Ice Cream Jonsey wrote:Ah. French puns. Yeah, that movie sounds like a real winner. Which one was this? Amelie? I'll be sure to queue that one up real quick-like.
We're talking about Insomnia, you idiot. That's why it's funny. A guy named "Dormer" in a movie called "Insomnia"? Are any of your remaining withered brain cells able to draw a connection there?
Solaris (1972) 168 minutes.
Solaris (2002) 99 minutes.
Kinda kooky, huh?
How much did they chop out of the 2002 version?
Well, the story of the 2002 version actually more closely resembles the book. What you're losing is:

1. A long sequence set on Earth before Kelvin goes to the space station. (In the book, on page 1, he has just arrived at the station. In the 2002 version, he arrives there within minutes.)

2. Looooong, slooooow sequences of mise-en-scene, beautiful, lingering images intending to inspire an almost trancelike state in the viewer. For me, it works. However, its pacing makes 2001 look like The Fast and the Furious. It is a LONG movie, and feels nearly twice its length. I'm always sorry when it ends, but I know most viewers end up sorry it began.

3. A slightly different ending from both the book and the 2002 version (which, again, more closely matches the book in nature.) What we gain here by diverging from the book is one of the most emotionally striking, haunting images to ever end a movie, ever. If the rest of the movie has "worked" for you, and you are indeed in the "Solaris Trance", the ending will definitely fuck you up.

None of the story is lost, though.

Now, what do we gain, if anything, with the 2002 version?

1. Well, it certainly looks like it was made 30 years later than the original, in terms of technical wizardry. There aren't many special effects, but, you know, everything looks more "futuristic".

2. An ending more in spirit with (though not identical to) the book.

3. Soderbergh is no Tarkovsky, but neither is Tarkovsky Soderbergh, so you get a different "flava".

4. CLOONEY ASS.

5. The superiority in knowing that you're one of only six or seven people who actually SAW the movie.
Having made the commitment to pirate it
I wish you wouldn't do that. With this movie specifically, I'm talking about. I wrote when it first came out that it HAD to do good, if we were going to see Hollywood attempt more movies like this. It did horribly, of course, so the last chance is when it comes out on video. I predict it will do much better there, but not if you scumbags just start pirating it.
Should I go rent the 1972 version first?
Read the above descriptions and decide for yourself if there's any way you would enjoy it.
(Is the 1972 version available on DVD?)
Yes, it was recently released as a Criterion Collection disc (the same day the remake came out, non-coincidentally.) It is quite good. Grab it if you can find it.

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gsdgsd
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Post by gsdgsd » Wed Jan 29, 2003 5:43 pm

Ben wrote:Does anyone (and by "anyone", I'm nearly certain I'm just talking to you, Debaser, since nobody else is reading this thread, probably since it has nothing to do with video games or gay maggot homos) know how the ending of the original film differed from Nolan's remake?
I haven't seen the remake, but the ending of the original "Insomnia" was very ... vague. (I'm talking about the very, very ending here, not the climax) Didn't wrap things up in a neat little package. Does that sound like the U.S. version?

Greg

Ben

Post by Ben » Wed Jan 29, 2003 6:01 pm

No.

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gsdgsd
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Post by gsdgsd » Wed Jan 29, 2003 6:10 pm

Well, then.

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Ice Cream Jonsey
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Post by Ice Cream Jonsey » Wed Jan 29, 2003 6:11 pm

Ben wrote:We're talking about Insomnia, you idiot. That's why it's funny. A guy named "Dormer" in a movie called "Insomnia"? Are any of your remaining withered brain cells able to draw a connection there?
It hurts when daddy drinks. :_^(
Having made the commitment to pirate it
I wish you wouldn't do that. With this movie specifically, I'm talking about. I wrote when it first came out that it HAD to do good, if we were going to see Hollywood attempt more movies like this. It did horribly, of course, so the last chance is when it comes out on video. I predict it will do much better there, but not if you scumbags just start pirating it.
I was under the impression that the Clooney version wasn't available for rent yet. Truth to tell, I would have gone to see this movie if I had:

1) A girlfriend
2) Friends

I do have a brother, yes, but he hates going to movies. I had to do a lot of things just to get him to agree to go to Daredevil in a couple weeks. Things I don't really want to talk about.

Shit, man, wouldn't it be cool if we all lived in the same city? Then I could see flicks like "Solaris" all the time. WE'D LIVE LIKE FAT CATS! And when you were engaged in an alcoholic bender one of the other JC denizens'd be able to make it.

Oh! I'd also enjoy a pony!

Should I go rent the 1972 version first?
Read the above descriptions and decide for yourself if there's any way you would enjoy it.
Yes, it was recently released as a Criterion Collection disc (the same day the remake came out, non-coincidentally.) It is quite good. Grab it if you can find it.
Same day?!?! What are the odds!!
the dark and gritty...Ice Cream Jonsey!

Ben

Post by Ben » Wed Jan 29, 2003 6:26 pm

Ice Cream Jonsey wrote:I was under the impression that the Clooney version wasn't available for rent yet.
That is correct. That's why I recommend, rather than pirating it, waiting for it to come out, and then renting it. You have "movie rental" places there in the Fort?
Truth to tell, I would have gone to see this movie if I had:

1) A girlfriend
2) Friends
I will never understand people who won't go to movies alone. What are you doing while the movie is playing that is so goddamn social? Chatting amongst yourselves? Engaging in a little grabass? How about shutting up and watching the goddamn movie. Why do you need other people around to do that?
Daredevil
Which will be horrible. Way to go.
Should I go rent the 1972 version first?
Read the above descriptions and decide for yourself if there's any way you would enjoy it.
You are also bad at quoting.

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Ice Cream Jonsey
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Post by Ice Cream Jonsey » Wed Jan 29, 2003 6:43 pm

Ben wrote:That is correct. That's why I recommend, rather than pirating it, waiting for it to come out, and then renting it. You have "movie rental" places there in the Fort?
If I am going to wait for things, I'd be waiting for you to quit being a goddamn asshole in this thread before I continued to write my replies. But that's not going to happen either.

I will never understand people who won't go to movies alone. What are you doing while the movie is playing that is so goddamn social? Chatting amongst yourselves? Engaging in a little grabass? How about shutting up and watching the goddamn movie. Why do you need other people around to do that?
I knew you'd go off on a rant like that, so I didn't bother to say that I *do* go to see movies alone. Oh! No! What NOW Lt. Cmdr Rant-on-a-Rampage! The world no longer unfolds for you in such a predictable manner, like a Generation One minibot, now does it?

Daredevil
Which will be horrible. Way to go.
What makes you say that? You're just being argumentative. It's got two guys who can actually act playing the part of the "bad guys." It's got a guy in the lead who has a genuine appreciation for the character. (JC FUN FAX: Affleck wrote the foreword to the last DD trade paperback that came out... six years ago. OK, that's more of a DD FUN FAX. Shut up.) The only weak part will be the girl, and seeing how she was promoted by ABC during the Super Bowl (this is the same girl in the TV show "Alias" and ABC ran three or four ads of said show that were all literally nothing other than her slowly emerging from a bed or a pool in either lingerie or a bathing suit) everyone in the world, herself included, knows that she's just there to look good.

Daredevil will kick ass. I predict big things. The comic flick I am worried about is the Hulk, actually. (As opposed to the person that I am worried about, which is you, because I am going to leave the house in a few moments, drive to Southern California, kick the shit out of you, drive back, and then post a bunch of "LOL" and "OWNZ0R3D" messages.)
the dark and gritty...Ice Cream Jonsey!

bruce
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Post by bruce » Wed Jan 29, 2003 6:43 pm

Ben wrote:gay maggot homos
Ben wrote:CLOONEY ASS
Where is MONKEY MONKEY when you need him?

Bruce

Ben

Post by Ben » Wed Jan 29, 2003 6:52 pm

Ice Cream Jonsey wrote:I knew you'd go off on a rant like that, so I didn't bother to say that I *do* go to see movies alone.
What's the matter, loser? Can't get a date?
What makes you say that?
Oh, just a hunch.
going to leave the house in a few moments, drive to Southern California, kick the shit out of you, drive back, and then post a bunch of "LOL" and "OWNZ0R3D" messages.)
Shows how much you know! I'm LEAVING for ARIZONA in ten minutes, and won't be back until NEXT MONDAY!! LOLOLRORRORLROLL!!!! omfg fag

So, BYE EVERYONE. In my absence, can someone come up with a Ben-like Simulacra to keep the content train a-rollin'?

Ben-Like Simulacrum

Post by Ben-Like Simulacrum » Wed Jan 29, 2003 7:00 pm

gay homo maggot

CLOONEY ASS

Ben

k. roo
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Post by k. roo » Wed Jan 29, 2003 7:54 pm

Ben-Like Simulacrum wrote:...
OK, bruce, here's a hint. When you go on spoofing the average JC poster, you'll have to lower yourself to the corresponding level of language proficiency to appear credible. Don't give yourself away by the correct use of suffixes. I know it takes real effort, but you can do it.

Debaser
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Post by Debaser » Wed Jan 29, 2003 8:03 pm

Ice Cream Jonsey wrote:It's got two guys who can actually act playing the part of the "bad guys."
Isn't Kingpin being played by Zeus?

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Post by k. roo » Wed Jan 29, 2003 9:11 pm

Is he gone?

OK, so maybe I can get the whole Solaris thing off my chest which has been sitting there ever since I saw the first trailer sometime last year.

I read the book when I was in high school (must have been '85, I think). I can't exactly say that I remember a whole lot except that it impressed me and moved me deeply - couldn't get the whole drinking liquid oxygen thing out of my mind for years. The experience resulted in an A and an then an F when I submitted virtually the same book review essay in literature class to two different teachers, and, I think, 3 years apart. Not everyone appreciates a pubescent's ruminations on being haunted by the spirit of lost love, I guess.

About two years after reading the book, I saw the Tarkovsky movie advertised in a local movie theater - the kind that has a club-like setting, where you have 2-3 armchairs around miniature tables, and where you can have a beer and a smoke while you watch. By that time I had fallen deeply in love with Stalker (w/o having read the Strugatskis' story). So of course I had to go. It was packed. We (I managed to drag a few friends along) had to sit on the floor for the length of the movie.

For what it's worth, I had a hard time relating the movie to the book, except in a superficial sense. And while the film impressed me with its grace and powerful imagery, it didn't do nearly as much for me as Stalker had done. No matter, I liked it, and it was sufficiently different from all the other imported Hollywood, er, material that I became somewhat protective of my memory of it - as had happened with Stalker and every Tarkovsky film I managed to see since.

About 3 years ago, I remembered less of the movie than I remember of the book now. Then a french friend dug up a tape of it, hijacked a classroom in college with a projector, and showed it there late at night. Hm. It seemed longer now than it did back when. Guess my attention span isn't what it used to be. Or maybe the version I saw originally was edited - hard to tell so many years later. It also seemed rather dated, moreso than movies where Tarkovsky doesn't go for the futuristic angle. So this time around I desperately tried to cling to the beautiful (and certainly embellished, over the years) memories that I had from the original, but it took effort. I can't say I remember more of it now than I did before seeing it a second time. And that depresses me. One of these days, when I'm alone, I promised myself, I'm going to watch it again. With the mental notepad, and the rewinder cocked.

Then I saw the first (and only, actually) trailer for the remake when I took the Russian runt to see the time machine early last year. (I'm a bit hazy on when exactly, and I might be making this up, but it wouldn't be a proper post without me mentioning Russians, now would it.) I was excited. Yay Solaris, yay Clooney. However, the trailer was extremely vague, and no specific date was actually announced. So I waited. And anticipated. And mulled it over and over. And lost sight of it a bit. When it finally did come out, I actually had grown quite apprehensive. I mean, Clooney? Hollywood? Wasn't one of the reasons I liked it that... Would they turn the piece of art, the mental exercise, too beautiful to comprehend, would they turn it into a bite-sized, sugarcoated Happy Meal(TM)? With the sickening and inescapable American Family Values(TM) Message hammering its nauseatingly unsubtle way into the bubblegum brains of today's teenage audience? This is my precious memory, you hear, it's none of your god damn business if I don't remember much in particular, now don't you fuckin' dare disneyfy it.

In the end, it took me too long to muster enough Gelassenheit to go watch it. I mean, how long was it out? A week? They gotta give people more time to make up their minds. I'm not looking forward to agonizing over it again once it does come out on tape. Also, if I do find the strength to do it, Tarkovsky goes first, <s>na</s>of course.

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Post by loafergirl » Thu Jan 30, 2003 7:49 pm

Debaser wrote:Never seen Widowmaker, Amelie was wonderful, did see Insomnia and while it certainly qualified as "doesn't suck" it was hardly amazing or thrilling or anything.

And remember, with all this complaining about sucky movies, you were the one who chose to watch LotR (which you pretty much knew you'd despise) rather than Adaptation when they opened the same weekend.

Do me a favor: Watch "Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai" for me if you get a chance and haven't already. I adore the flick, but I find most people don't share my enthusiasm. As the self-proclaimed authority on everything, I'm curious as to your stance.
Ghost Dog ROCKS! I love that movie... Forest Whitaker did an amazing job in that movie, and the French speaking ice cream man was a trip.
1, 2, 5!
3 sir...
3!

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loafergirl
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Post by loafergirl » Thu Jan 30, 2003 7:56 pm

Insomnia: though a decent movie, upon leaving the movie theatre gave the distinc impression that I myself was suffering from insomnia, which I had not been. Though luckuly it was not so bad as the brain sliding our of my ears effect that David Lynch films such as Eraserhead, and Mulholland Dr. give.

-LG
1, 2, 5!
3 sir...
3!

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Post by Debaser » Thu Jan 30, 2003 7:58 pm

bruce wrote:
Debaser wrote:"Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai"
Fuckin' <b>RULES</b>.

Bruce
Ghost Dog ROCKS! I love that movie... Forest Whitaker did an amazing job in that movie, and the French speaking ice cream man was a trip.
Could it be? This place smells of... home.

Debaser
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Post by Debaser » Thu Jan 30, 2003 8:00 pm

loafergirl wrote:Insomnia: though a decent movie, upon leaving the movie theatre gave the distinc impression that I myself was suffering from insomnia, which I had not been. Though luckuly it was not so bad as the brain sliding our of my ears effect that David Lynch films such as Eraserhead, and Mulholland Dr. give.

-LG
I rather liked Mulholland Drive. It made buggerall sense, but had this pleasant alternation between creepy and fun and back and forth that I found pleasant.

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Post by Protagonist X » Thu Jan 30, 2003 8:02 pm

Okay, it's video rental time for me tonight. Back when I took the Film Major thing seriously, I did little else but watch movies. It occurs to me that in the past 4 years there's probably been a whole lot of good stuff that I missed.

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Post by Ice Cream Jonsey » Thu Jan 30, 2003 8:09 pm

Debaser wrote:I rather liked Mulholland Drive. It made buggerall sense, but had this pleasant alternation between creepy and fun and back and forth that I found pleasant.
Adam Cadre just wrote up a take on that movie.

That page also mentions something that happened in the Buffy TV show which is so cool that it may end up affecting my previous opinion on it, much like how I thought of FF10 when I accidently learned what happens to Tidus.

The only David Lynch stuff I have ever seen was Blue Velvet (the student union played it on the big screen when I was a freshman at SU; the people I was with decided to walk out and I wasn't really disagreeing with them -- probably the worst movie I have ever seen because of it, but I could not relate a single thing that happened because it had been 10 years now) and Twin Peaks (which I saw as I dated a girl who had all the episodes on tape -- the show was fine, except that it got cancelled before they had a chance to end it. Later, ABC would do the same thing to the Clerks Animated Series... "American" broadcasting channel my arse!!)

Could it be? This place smells of... home.
Ah-hahaha!
the dark and gritty...Ice Cream Jonsey!

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Post by Debaser » Thu Jan 30, 2003 8:33 pm

Ice Cream Jonsey wrote: The only David Lynch stuff I have ever seen was Blue Velvet (the student union played it on the big screen when I was a freshman at SU; the people I was with decided to walk out and I wasn't really disagreeing with them -- probably the worst movie I have ever seen because of it, but I could not relate a single thing that happened because it had been 10 years now)
A friend of mine is a huge Lynch fan, and he insisted on showing us Blue Velvet one weekend. I fell asleep about a quarter of the way in, not because of any inherent flaw in the film but because stick me on a couch in a dark room with a couple of beers in me after a week of getting up at 8:00 AM every day for work, and that's pretty much what I'm wont to do. What does reveal an inherent flaw in the film is that, before I passed out, I remember thinking it would have been signifigantly better as porn.
That page also mentions something that happened in the Buffy TV show which is so cool that it may end up affecting my previous opinion on it, much like how I thought of FF10 when I accidently learned what happens to Tidus.
If you've never actually watched the show and are instead forming your opinion based on the general premise, marketing scheme, and embarrassing fan pages, I'd suggest giving it a shot. I started watching last year because I kept seeing ads for a musical episode, and found the premise stupidly intriguing. I now pretty much agree with Adam's assessment that it's more or less the peak of the television medium thus far. The episode mentioned in the article was very atypical for the show in a lot of ways, however.

But hey, it's nearly as interactive as FFX, and won't cost you 50 bucks to watch.

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