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The May 2016 Film Thread

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To kick off this month's film thread, I just finished watching Death Proof (2007) by Quentin Tarantino. While the intent may have been to channel cinema from a different era (perhaps a thing I can't fully appreciate) it's probably my least favourite of his eight movies. That's not to say it's not a decent movie, or that it wasn't enjoyable, but many of the strengths of his other work: strong character development, sharp dialogue, and inventive plot twists, weren't really evident in Death Proof. On the other hand, the pacing, which I generally find slow in Tarantino's movies, was solid in Death Proof, and kept things engaging.

Also got a chance to watch Fracture (2007) by Gregory Hoblit, which mixes thriller and courtroom drama. Fracture focuses on a cat and mouse game between an intelligent, aging engineer (Anthony Hopkins) who has been charged for murdering his cheating wife, and the young, ambitious lawyer prosecuting the case (Ryan Gosling). Found it very engaging throughout, with good pacing, a suspenseful, well thought out plot, and strong performances (Hopkins was especially good). Well worth a watch!

This weekend, watched The Man From Uncle, directed by Guy Ritchie. I'm not a big fan of the spy movie, but given the comic elements, thought I might enjoy it. With a movie like this, which is leaning heavily toward fun at the expense of realism, my enjoyment mostly hinges on there being a lot of gags, but the laughs were few and far between in The Man From Uncle. Not a bad movie, but just not for me.

Deathproof is awesome. Generally I'm a big fan of Tarantino ever since I saw one scene from Kill Bill vol. 1, it was where a Japanese death posse walked down the corridor and the camera closed in three fast, bold leaps, showing 3 perspectives at once and this was coordinated with the sound. It had this somewhere-ish, "I've seen it somewhere" type of vibe but I didn't know neither the technique, nor the convention. But enjoyed it as hell, anyway. And QT, being a postmodern director, has tons of things like that.

Great movies to watch, simply and interesting.


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