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Mark R.Y.

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    This is a much more difficult question to respond to than it was when I was younger. I have seen so many films now, spanning from the silent era to the present, from Hollywood to around the world, from the loftiest works of art to the silliest pieces of junk food cinema that it's impossible to boil my list down to even several dozen favorites. So instead I'll mention the directors whose films excite me the most (in no particular order): Tarkovsky, Hitchcock, Fellini, Truffaut, the Coen bros, Minnelli, Powell & Pressburger, Ken Russell (up to the early 1980s, Wes Anderson, Scorsese, Kazan, Boorman (primarily his films of the 1970s & 80s), Lean, Fassbinder, Mackendrick, Rohmer, Malle, Kurosawa, Bergman, Renoir, Tati, Sautet, the Taviani bros, Lynch (problematic content, but genius moviemaking), Fosse, Satyajit Ray, DePalma (mainly his early work, for the sheer flair of his style), Altman .... and many more, not to mention directors like Orson Welles and Peter Weir who, although I'm not a fan of their entire output, I greatly admire their best work (e.g. Citizen Kane, Picnic at Hanging Rock, etc.) Also see here: http://markrussyoung.wordpress.com/

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  1. Poster and release date
  2. You idiots who don't understand how great Malick is have no business calling yourselves film critics.
  3. The film itself is still nominated; it's just that one particular mixer who violated the rules who is out as a nominee.
  4. http://parallax-view.org/2017/01/30/moments-out-of-time-2016/ Every year Richard T. Jameson and Kathleen Murphy publish a list of memorable little moments from the year's movies. Their latest has just been made available. I'll add on a few of my favorite little moments: Cemetery of Splendour: The apparition of the princesses. Silence: The Inquisitor deflates right before our eyes. Hail, Caesar!: Cutest couple of the year - Carlotta and Hobie. La La Land: A pier at twilight - "City of Stars." The BFG: The corgis' wild ride. What little bits, moods, moments, lines of dialogue, and so forth were memorable for you from any of 2016's films?
  5. This is the one that's driving me nuts. The 1967 Accident comes to mind as it features several middle-aged & unhappy Oxford profs. There is a lengthy "backyard" party scene, although I don't recall any marshmallows, roasted or otherwise. Nor any working stiffs. Hail Caesar! is another movie that sounded right if we consider Clooney's actor a "working stiff," but the guys in the group are screenwriters, not professors (aside from Marcuse), and all I remember them chomping on were cucumber sandwiches, not marshmallows. (Of course, it might turn out to be an oblique reference to some recent genre superhero film, thus leaving me completely at sea.) Another hint, please!
  6. Any of the Joan of Arc films. EDIT: I had not seen Evan C's response before posting this. Let me throw in a couple of bad plot descriptions: 1. A man teaches a war veteran a few good lines to use with a woman during sex. 2. A businessman regrets not selling his watch.
  7. I recommend the recently rediscovered 1980s American independent film "Losing Ground." Rohmer fans in particular will appreciate its smart, character-driven artistry. Richard Brody is enthralled with it.
  8. As a rising (fully arrived?) filmmaker, Chazelle continues to intrigue me. Is the look of La La Land influenced by Francis Coppola's One From the Heart, of all things?
  9. ...and Criterion's second Coen brothers film this year following their recent Inside Llewyn Davis. Too bad Blood Simple's highly, uh, informative DVD commentary track has not been preserved for this release. But...Valley of the Dolls movies too?? Isn't Criterion dedicated to...good films?
  10. Thank you for your response, Anders. I created my little write-up yesterday after coming home from seeing and being moved by KoC and then grumbling at the amount of sheer dismissiveness of the film by both a large amount of professional critics and IMDB users alike. This is a new movie by Terrence Malick, for goodness sake, and for critics and film buffs to not even bother to wrestle with it is dismaying. (There are, of course, those who have examined KoC seriously and have still found it disappointing; I'm talking about the large volume of those who have waved it away without bothering to engage the film - to put at least a little bit of themselves into the process, rather than letting the movie "wash over them" and do all of the work.) I posted my write-up on several sites, including this one. Obviously, I know the members here will tend not to immediately dismiss a new Malick. (I also posted at IMDB, where there has been much of that lazy attitude, and am still waiting for a response there.) I apologize for the condescending tone of my post, which was borne out of my frustration. You raise excellent questions about KoC that I can only give superficial answers to at this point. I am eager to revisit the movie several more times to explore its "mosaic" form even more. I have simply found that Malick's poetry, with its boldness about the essentials of life, death, spirituality (a weasel word, I know. I should note that I am a firm, devout believer in Christ.), speaks to me in a manner that I rarely find in other movies. Certainly I can't think of many films recently that are similar to Malick's approach. (And don't say The Better Angels ;)) With at least one more viewing of KoC, and with the time to take notes and organize my thoughts better, I hope to come back to this thread and write more explicitly about this film using your questions as a starting point. (Boy, good thing I'm not a professional critic and have to deal with deadlines!) I hope you enjoy your viewing, and am eager to read your thoughts on it.
  11. If you don't give what you have in your mind, heart, and soul to Terrence Malick's most recent film, it might come off like Willem Dafoe's laughable movie in "Mr. Bean's Holiday." If you do give all of yourself to this film and you still find it empty and pretentious, then perhaps you need to explore the notion that you have forgotten what is important in life and beyond. Do you look downwards to earthly matters and mere materialism, or do you look up to the sky as a limping bird does - yearning to get back up there? In a dreamlike series of images, sounds, words and actions, "Knight of Cups" unfolds as a poem. An odd form for a movie - we're used to stories in films being told dramatically, or like novels. Three acts. A to B to C to Z. Malick has been attempting, especially in his last few films, to tell basic truths about flesh and spirit, nature and grace, living for the moment vs. living as a prologue to something better. Like all good art, you must add your own story, thoughts, memories and wisdom to what is presented to you. No, I'm not a well-off Hollywood screenwriter who looks like Christian Bale and courts beauties like Freida Pinto and Natalie Portman, but I identified with Bale's character's dilemma. Malick is reminding us of the age-old question: What good is it to gain the world, but lose your soul? So the "perfume-ad" glamour of his (and D.P. Emmanuel Lubezki)'s stunning images and women is necessary - we need to see the highest end of pleasure, happiness and comfort this world can offer us, and still note it's a shadow of greater things.
  12. I think Richard Brody is impressed. A lot of the other reviewers don't seem as willing to board the train ride Malick is offering. They'd rather remain in the station. (I stole this metaphor from Richard Jameson.)
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