NBooth

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  1. Entertainment Weekly has details. Not many, but there's a glimpse at the photoshoot for the print issue and a taste of what will be in it. Here's EW's 40-minute reunion special. I'm gonna get them on Amazon, even if it means subscribing to Showtime. I'm that excited.
  2. First listen. It's very much of a piece with the other two albums. "These Foolish Things" is especially good.
  3. New interview at Dylan's site about his new triple album of covers: Pleased to see that "Stardust," one of my favorite of the standards (and possibly one of my favorite songs ever), will be on the album:
  4. I answered this elsewhere, but for the record I watched the original dubbed and was extremely unimpressed with the quality of the voice acting.
  5. And series 4. Which...eh, I know lots of people hated it but I was more or less just uninspired by it. The second episode is solid, and Cumberbatch and Freeman confirm that they've ascended from good to great in terms of Holmes-Watson portrayals, but the rest of the series was far below the standard set by the second and third seasons (which are, for my money, the greatest the show has gotten). The last episode, in particular, was a mess--reaching for emotional impact that isn't really earned and playing a heightened version of the Moriarty game without the clean plotting. The coda, though--that was some good stuff and served, I think, as an effective end of the series, if they choose not to continue it.
  6. Robin hasn't been onscreen since Batman and Robin, but they want to do a Nightwing movie? The brains behind the DC movie universe need to do some serious reflection.
  7. Ok, but without Fincher or Mara I have a hard time caring about this movie.
  8. And the Marion Crane arc begins. This has always been the challenge the show would have to confront--how, exactly, to deal with the Hitchcock movie (and, to a far lesser extent, the source novel). I can't say it really grabs me, though it's certainly more intriguing than the Dylan-Emma stuff; those actors really don't sell the married-with-child angle. After seeing how effectively Hannibal cannibalized and reconstituted its own source material, I was hoping for something a bit more daring vis-a-vis Marion, but (the AV Club to the contrary), the scenes involving her play very much like a remake of the Hitchcock original. There are changes, of course. Sam Loomis's marriage (and the existence of cell phones!) pushes the story in a slightly new direction, as does Norman's ongoing breakdown. Highmore is working overtime to sell that angle and it shows; his Norman Bates seems constantly on the edge of tears, lately, which is effective insofar as this is so very definitely Norman's story now. To my understanding, the Marion storyline is a two-episode arc, so next week we'll presumably be getting to the shower. I'm more worried now than I was about how that will play out. (On another note, I would like to emphasize how gorgeous this show is. The sequence with Marion pulling up to the hotel was a treat to watch)
  9. Ok, here we go. Our film selection for March is John Woo's 1989 actioner The Killer. Here's IMDB. Here's a few articles: John Woo's Mesmerizing The Killer Changed Action-Movie History Forever Here's MZS on The Killer. Here's a 2000 article on Woo from Senses of Cinema. And here's our thread on spiritual themes in Woo's films. I'm looking forward to the discussion, y'all. I've seen very few of Woo's movies, so I'm looking forward to catching The Killer later this week. The movie is streaming on Netflix.
  10. So "waking up" should be glossed as "conversion"? I can dig that, though I wouldn't want to limit the list to positive examples (um...just off the top of my head, and no one including myself would suggest it, but Revenge of the Sith is a conversion movie, in its own way. More sensibly, perhaps, so is Nineteen Eighty-Four).
  11. I didn't either, though I don't mind doing it as a list. I would think that "waking up" is more apocalyptic (in the David Dark sense) than simple moral growth and development--more vertiginous than, say, Minority Report. Something like (sigh) The Matrix or They Live seems more in line with the description provided, though (importantly) neither of those is about waking up to beauty and wonder. Maybe Malick has something about waking up to beauty and wonder, but I should think that kind of movie is vanishingly rare.
  12. New trailer.
  13. Last night's episode was--of course--very good, but it prompted me to do some reading on Ed Gein and now I'm wondering if Madeline isn't doomed. Gein's final victim was the owner of the local hardware store, and we know how "Norma" reacts to women Norman is attracted to....
  14. Ok, so finally got around to watching this. Or, rather, re-watching it, since it turns out that this is a Woo movie I have seen, though I forgot (it would have been about four years ago). So, initial thoughts: 1. This feels the most Shaw Brothers of any Woo film I've yet watched (and, no, I've not seen Last Hurrah for Chivalry, which apparently came out through Golden Harvest). Obviously we've got the Great Woo Theme of Male Friendship. Tripled, actually--between the two assassins and two cops and then between Chow and Lee. I was reminded while looking over some of the stuff on Senses of Cinema that Woo's mentor was the Shaw Brothers director Chang Cheh, he of Crippled Avengers fame. In fact, Woo worked with Chang on Blood Brothers, which totally makes sense. And, of all the Woo flicks I've seen (not many), this one feels the most like it could come out of that training; even the ending, which I'll get to, feels like the sort of thing that would occur in a Chang Cheh movie: big action scene, bloody showdown, and--curtain. The thrills have been had and there's no need to wrap anything up. 2. Agreed on how bleak the ending is. I mean, not only are Ah Jong's eyes presumably ruined, but it seems questionable how well Li will be able to deliver on his promise. And what that means in the context of the whole thing might be worth unpacking a bit, though it does seem to me that bleak endings are part of the genre, here. Apparently the originally planned ending wasn't so bleak, but scheduling got in the way. 3. The religious stuff is interesting, but I need to see some of y'all talk it out a bit. I mean, ok: there's a sense in which Ah Jong is seeking redemption. Fair enough. There's the moment where the Madonna and Child take a bullet for Jenny and everyone stares as if something significant just happened, though they quickly go back to shooting. There's the doves, which I remember reading somewhere betoken a spiritual significance for Woo. According to IMDB, Mean Streets had something to do with the religious themes. Which, fair enough. I'm not convinced that these bits and pieces are nearly as intrinsic as the homosocial bonding--and, then again, perhaps that bonding itself takes on some sort of spiritual dimension if regarded properly. I'd like to hear more on this, though. 4. If I'm going to mention Chang Cheh, it's only fair that I also mention Sergio Leone, whose influence is felt not only in the harmonica but also in the way Ah Jong is, Once Upon a Time in the West-style, the last of a dying breed quickly giving way to both less scrupulous criminals and the police. Then again, this is also a theme from The Seven Samurai, no? --which is a movie Woo has cited as a favorite, iirc. 5. Visually, I really like this one. I mentioned on Facebook that, between Riverdale and John Wick Chapter 2, I'm really loving neon lately, and the first half of this movie in particular has some gorgeous splashes of color. 6. Speaking of visuals, here's cinematographer Peter Pau on The Killer:
  15. I've been listening to the Welcome to Riverdale podcast and they're open about the fact that casting Amick was very deliberate. Interestingly enough, according to the showrunner, this show wasn't originally supposed to be a mystery show. It started as a coming-of-age movie (to be directed, iirc, by the guy behind The Perks of Being a Wallflower) and only turned into a murder mystery about the time they were shopping the series to Fox. Then again, the showrunner is also the brain behind Afterlife with Archie, so the decision makes a certain amount of sense.
  16. This is a real thing. For comparison, this is a [not neccessarily safe for work] parody thing from a few years ago: Indiewire: Link to our thread on the Archie vs. Zombies movie. Shannon Purser (Barb from Stranger Things) is playing Big Ethel. I don't see any way this could be good, particularly after that trailer, but it intersects with a number of my interests (small town stuff; nostalgia; murder-mystery; etc), so I'll be checking it out anyway.
  17. I rewatched the first half of the show this weekend and I'm now comfortable saying not only that I like RIVERDALE quite a lot but that it's also quite a good show. It's bonkers, but in the best possible way.
  18. This might be of interest around these parts primarily for the Sufjan Stevens connection (that is, Stevens is providing the soundtrack, so here's a link to our thread): Aciman's most recent novel, Enigma Variations is getting a little positive buzz.
  19. July 19, 2019 No mention of LaBeouf, of course. No mention, either, of Lucas--which, honestly, worries me a bit (then again, I'm one of those folks who thinks KotCS is an underrated gem). With Spielberg at the helm, I should hope Disney will be able to resist (or he'll be able to resist them) Marvel-izing at least this movie (but, y'know, if they continue the franchise in some way with a new lead, then all bets are off). Then again, looking over the thread, I see I've said all this already, said it all.
  20. Renewed. I'm not a bit mad about that.
  21. Ashley Rindsberg on "How Norman Mailer Blurred the Line Between the Literary and the Lurid"