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Invictus (2009)


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Freeman as Mandela - inevitable

Damon as Francois Pienaar? - ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha,

That's the funniest thing I've seen in ages. Except that already if you Google Pienaar's name you get loads of pictures of Damon. Ugh.

Pienaar was a legend. A flippin' massive one.

Wonder whether it will include the Springbok's opponents New Zealand "getting" food poisoning the day before the final? SA winning may have been more inspirational, but NZ were far and away the best team in the world that year.

Matt

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Clint Eastwood, via Roger Friedman: "I thought he was just Christ-like . . . There are just no people like this on the planet."

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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Would anyone appreciate a quick overview of the rules of rugby to ease them into the film?

I thought is was just like American football without pads or rules. It's the way football would be played by real men.

A foreign movie can't be stupid.

-from the film
Armin

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Would anyone appreciate a quick overview of the rules of rugby to ease them into the film?

I thought is was just like American football without pads or rules. It's the way football would be played by real men.

That's my vague impression too. Also, whereas in American football you throw the ball forward, in rugby they make you throw it backward, right? That's messed up.

“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” — Flannery O'Connor

Writing at the new Decent Films | Follow me on Twitter and Facebook

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I forget where I first saw this, but someone recently wrote that soccer is a gentleman's game played by hooligans, while rugby is a hooligan's game played by gentlemen -- sound about right?

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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: I thought is was just like American football without pads or rules.

Pads - No

Rules - Yes. I have precious little grasp of the rules of American Football as it's known over here, but we have plenty...although they are called laws not rules.

: It's the way football would be played by real men.

As someone that has spent a good deal of his life playing it, I would obviously agree with this definition. The punch in the jaw I got on SAturday though was not within the laws...

: whereas in American football you throw the ball forward, in rugby they make you throw it backward, right?

Yes, though I think we have more kicking out of hand - that's looked down on a bit though (for example when we tour anyone caught kicking faces a stiff post match penalty)

: gentleman's game played by hooligans, while rugby is a hooligan's game played by gentlemen

yes it's a common quote, even today when the class divide between the sports has largely vanished.

FWIW, the episode of Friends where Ross plays rugby is so embarrassingly unlike rugby it's hard to watch. I suspect (and desperately hope) that Invictus will at least surpass this.

Matt

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I'm trying to decide whether to attend the press screening tonight or not. Anybody want to persuade me one way or the other? I'm having trouble getting excited enough to take a whole evening during a very busy month...

P.S.  I COULD BE WRONG.

 

Takin' 'er easy for all you sinners at lookingcloser.org. Also abiding at Facebook and Twitter.

 

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: I thought is was just like American football without pads or rules.

Pads - No

Rules - Yes. I have precious little grasp of the rules of American Football as it's known over here, but we have plenty...although they are called laws not rules.

Yankee observations on Rugby:

1. Rugby Laws are like the laws of the universe. Simple, but richly rewarding when observed enacted in their most complicated state. In Rugby, one tosses the ball backward to another player in order to progress forward down the field, unless kicking forward to someone brave enough to run out like a wide reciever. Otherwise, everyone scrums together for field advantage when play comes to a stop. Sounds simple, but offensive Rugby action is something that happens on several different planes at once that are always shifting, and thus requires large groups of men working in close concert to actually work. It is very stunning to see in action. Seldom seen in Scotland.

2. Rugby and American Football are apples and oranges in the sense that players in American Football typically hit each other at higher rates of speed. Rugby is fast paced, but most offensive and defensive players are in close contact throughout most of the action in the game. They hit each other in much different ways than American Football players. Except for American Football defensive linemen, the big hits in the NFL are much different than the big hits in Rugby.

3. There is a big difference between Rugby Leauge and Rugby Union. For the most part, the former is more fast paced and physically intensive than the latter. I often wonder how well most American Football players would fare at these levels of endurance.

4. Most Rugby players are much uglier than Matt Damon.

5. Rugby fans drink more.

Edited by MLeary

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

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I vote you should go. Because:

a) rugby

B) Morgan Freeman

c) Table Mountain

What more could you want?

Hm, that emoticon should not be there.

FWIW, my stratagm for dealing with unwanted emoticons is to insert superfluous periods into lettered lists. Thus

a.) rugby

b.) Morgan Freeman

c.) Table Mountain

etc.

“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” — Flannery O'Connor

Writing at the new Decent Films | Follow me on Twitter and Facebook

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Yankee observations on Rugby:

1. Rugby Laws are like the laws of the universe. Simple, but richly rewarding when observed enacted in their most complicated state. In Rugby, one tosses the ball backward to another player in order to progress forward down the field, unless kicking forward to someone brave enough to run out like a wide reciever. Otherwise, everyone scrums together for field advantage when play comes to a stop. Sounds simple, but offensive Rugby action is something that happens on several different planes at once that are always shifting, and thus requires large groups of men working in close concert to actually work. It is very stunning to see in action. Seldom seen in Scotland.

On one level the rules are simple, but on another they are very compicated. I'm just coming back into the game and in my absence the laws around rucking have been misinterpretated and become so complicated that there's been far too much variation from how one ref reads them to the next. There's just been some correction to that in the last few days, and obviously none of this applies to 1995 (when this film was set) before a number of small law changes.

When play comes to a stop though not everyone comes together. Rugby (Union) works around two fairly distinct teams within teams. The forwards are the big boys that work together as a pack, do the scrums and lineouts (formal set pieces), rucks (open play - ball on the ground) and mauls (open play ball in the air) largely together.

2. Rugby and American Football are apples and oranges in the sense that players in American Football typically hit each other at higher rates of speed. Rugby is fast paced, but most offensive and defensive players are in close contact throughout most of the action in the game. They hit each other in much different ways than American Football players. Except for American Football defensive linemen, the big hits in the NFL are much different than the big hits in Rugby.
Rugby league is more like American Football in this respect from what I can make out. I played a proper game of that over the summer and was amazed at how different the tackle is. That said, I think the way the backs tackle in Union is not that dissimilar from League, but in the forwards it's very different as Mike says.

3. There is a big difference between Rugby Leauge and Rugby Union. For the most part, the former is more fast paced and physically intensive than the latter. I often wonder how well most American Football players would fare at these levels of endurance.
That's what League players would like you to believe, but really they are just different. League doesn't have proper scrums (in the game I mentioned above I got told off by my own team for pushing in the scrum!)in Union that is a massively physical event that drains you like nothing else. And they also don't have rucks and mauls which are also very physical. But the tackles are perhaps a little more physically intense. Endurance is an interesting one. Until recently you really only hand a couple of substitutes, which meant that most of your players would have to last 80 minutes. That's changed loads at the higher levels, so it's more of a replacement system. It's still not as off-n-on as in League and Am. Football (where the fluidity of substitutions seems a little silly to me). FWIW second row where I play, and at the level I play, is the position least likely to be substituted, fo reasons I'll spare you from.

4. Most Rugby players are much uglier than Matt Damon.
I assume you meant to add "present company excepted" to the end of that sentence.

5. Rugby fans drink more.
And players too. Present company excepted.

Matt

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a.) rugby

b.) Morgan Freeman

c.) Table Mountain

etc.

Freeman is getting creamed for his atrocious accent... :)

Is he? So far I'd heard only hoopla about how great he is, although that talk cooled significantly last week in my critics' circle, as people began to see the film. Still, even those less impressed with the final product thought Freeman was good, if not nearly at his best, in this film.

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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is the south african accent becoming the new "i've got chops" accent for actors?

i know several south africans, and they laugh at hollywood actors trying to do their accents...

I don't deny that there should be priests to remind men that they will one day die. I only say it is necessary to have another kind of priests, called poets, to remind men that they are not dead yet. - G. K. Chesterton

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League doesn't have proper scrums (in the game I mentioned above I got told off by my own team for pushing in the scrum!)in Union that is a massively physical event that drains you like nothing else. And they also don't have rucks and mauls which are also very physical. But the tackles are perhaps a little more physically intense.

Ah, I could never figure that out with League, thanks.

"...the vivid crossing of borders between film and theology may save the film from the banality of cinema and festival business, and it may also save the church from the deep sleep of the habitual and the always known."

(Hans Werner Dannowski)

Filmwell | Twitter

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I always thought of rugby kinda like NHL hockey without the skates, stick, puck, pads, or ice.

I once went to a boxing match and a rugby game broke out. etc etc

I loved rugby during my several stays in Australia years ago. The difference being that in England, rugby players don't really know a good beer, as it takes seven minutes to pour, and that the Australians have downed seven before the English have sipped their first.

And the Australians wouldn't drink tea as a chaser.

Typically rugby in England is quite civilized compared to other parts of the world where all the criminals got shipped off to.

PS Go Queensland.

Edited by Persona

In an interstellar burst, I am back to save the Universe.

Filmsweep by Persona. 2013 Film Journal. IlPersona.

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FWIW, I certainly find Freeman's accent distracting and/or inconsistent just within the trailer; I am curious to see if it is a problem throughout the film as a whole or if it's worked into the film in such a way that it becomes easier to "buy into" it.

"Sympathy must precede belligerence. First I must understand the other, as it were, from the inside; then I can critique it from the outside. So many people skip right to the latter." -- Steven D. Greydanus
Now blogging at Patheos.com. I can also still be found at Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. See also my film journal.

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It's getting a solid early RT rating, but Indiewire today calls it a thudding, impersonal work.

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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: is the south african accent* becoming the new "i've got chops" accent for actors?

Always though Patsy Kensit was a bit of a pioneer...

: the Australians have downed seven before the English have sipped their first

Were you there in 2003? Cos if so the reason it took us a long time to sip our first then was cos we'd had the inconvenience of picking up a trophy, doing a lap of honour etc.

Matt

*Should of course be pronounced ik-sent

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I glanced through the thread and didn't see anyone mentioning the title. How can a Christian leader like Mandela be portrayed as believing the creed of INVICTUS?

Out of the night that covers me,

Black as the Pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance

I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

Finds and shall find me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll

I am the master of my fate:

I am the captain of my soul.

Denny

Since 1995 we have authored a commentary on film, cinema in focus. Though we enjoy cinema as an art form, our interests lie not so much in reviewing a film as in beginning a conversation about the social and spiritual values presented. We, therefore, often rate a film higher or lower due to its message rather than its quality of acting or film-making.

Cinema In Focus Website

Free Methodist Church of Santa Barbara Website

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