Posts concerning film

Lightsabers are Still Cool

23:29 20 Aug 2010

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How to Cheat in the Leaving Certificate on YouTube

21:03 05 Jul 2010. Updated: 21:39 06 Jul 2010

Some time ago I wrote a feature film with Graham Jones: How to Cheat in the Leaving Certificate, a heist movie about the Irish education system. It is now available on YouTube.

I’m leery of YouTube as a venue for feature films, since it’s geared much more towards short clips. On the other hand, if the film is insufficiently gripping, that’s down to mistakes we made.

The film has been in the news again recently, mentioned in stories concerning allegedly widespread cheating.

I’m amused that one of the primary funding sources for the film was the now-nationalized Anglo Irish Bank.

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An Entirely Naturalistic Palette

18:58 17 Jun 2010

Apparently the recent Hollywood trend is to shade everything teal and orange. I hope it doesn’t now drive me nuts whenever I watch a movie.

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Best in Life/The Greatest Joy?

23:38 08 Jun 2010

These are arguably the most famous lines from Conan the Barbarian:

Khitan General: What is best in life?
Conan: To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women!

Random browsing recently led me to learn that this was inspired by the words of Genghis Khan.

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Original Draft of The Empire Strikes Back

23:27 31 May 2010. Updated: 00:30 01 Jun 2010

Here’s a review of the original draft. It’s my favorite of the films, and finding out it was the least successful one made me sad. The original is interesting, although probably inferior to the final film—for example, giving Han a father (or any family) would have weakened his character.

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Death Wish Deaths

15:18 03 May 2010. Updated: 21:34 20 Sep 2013

I’ve always hated the Death Wish movies, partly because they’re terrible but more because of my suspicion that a significant section of American thinks that it was an accurate portrayal of 1970s and 1980s American cities.

Despite this, I was amused by Charles Bronson Death Wish Bodycount, which is just what it sounds like—a compilation of all the killing Paul Kersey does in the series.

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Alien Prequel

14:25 27 Apr 2010

I really hope that Ridley Scott does a good job on the prequel he’s making. Answering the questions about the background of Alien could be absolutely fantastic.

The problem with answering questions like that, though, is that plenty of viewers have created their own backstories, not in the fan-fiction sense but less consciously, assembling a structure that for them makes sense around the plot presented. Any prequel (or other expansion) runs into the issue of creating a larger milieu that fits around not just the original but also some reasonable number of the viewers’ imagined extrapolations.

Here’s hoping that Scott can do better than a certain other influential 1970s science fiction director…

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This Trailer May Seem Familiar…

11:34 11 Mar 2010

They might be aiming at an easy target, but they really nail it:

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Evan Mather’s Films

15:59 19 Feb 2010. Updated: 17:09 19 Feb 2010

While reading over some of my morning pages from about ten years ago, I encountered a reference to Evan Mather’s short films, and had no idea who he was, what the films were, or why I might have liked them. It turns out that I was referring to his Kenner action figure Star Wars shorts, which he has up, along with other interesting things, on www.evanmather.com. Godzilla Versus Disco Lando is still just as bizarre as it was back then…

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The Super Bowl by Auteurs

14:38 08 Feb 2010

Slate V came up with this clever clip about what the Super Bowl might look like if famous filmmakers directed it:

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The Architecture of Die Hard

12:04 14 Jan 2010

I found this architectural/sociological (sociospatial? psychospatial?) analysis of modern urban warfare, Die Hard, and cinematic portrayals of urban movement to be entirely fascinating. Tactics, psychology, Jason Bourne, parkour, and late-capitalist nonplaces—how can you go wrong with that?

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Don’t Watch Taken

18:12 10 Aug 2009

I was tired and stuck in my seat and made the poor choice of watching this awful Liam Neeson action movie. I say “awful” but I don’t just mean bad, I mean its themes and messages were highly questionable and disturbing. Spoilers will follow, but a) it’s not worth seeing and b) I’m not sure they’re “spoilers” with a movie as predictable as this.

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The Front Line Review

22:30 11 May 2009

I came across The Front Line while surfing Netflix for heist movies recently, and decided to watch it on the basis that it was Irish, relatively well-rated, and also that I’d never heard of it. I ended up being fairly impressed, with some reservations.

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The Crimes of Ferris

23:48 03 May 2009

Detailed in this excellent Ask MetaFilter thread. I’m not sure why I don’t own that movie.

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If You Watch Just One Deliberately Too-Long Horror Movie Parody Trailer This Year…

11:59 24 Mar 2009

Make sure it’s this one:

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Violence in the Watchmen Movie

20:21 10 Mar 2009

I don’t have much of a problem with film violence generally, and appreciate good fight scenes, but found myself disturbed by the Watchmen movie’s treatment of them.

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Watchmen Isn’t Out Yet But…

23:54 19 Feb 2009

I am going to go see it. I’m kind of annoyed by this, right now. Because I feel like I have to go see it. They’ve made the trailers look appealing enough that I have to go see it just in case it’s actually good, even though I’m still extremely skeptical.

Wil Wheaton likes it. I don’t know if that means anything to you. I don’t know if that means anything to me, actually. But he does swear by the beard of Zeus that the movie feels like the book. On the other hand, he does wonder why ultra-purists (hi!) would bother to see it at all.

I don’t know. There are already some things I don’t like from the trailers (like Rorschach’s voice and some of the costume changes), but in order to find out whether or not they’re minor details or signs that Snyder’s vision of it is too alien to me, I have to go see it.

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French Analog Electronica and The Thing

23:59 29 Jan 2009. Updated: 01:13 30 Jan 2009

This was featured on BoingBoing recently, but I like it enough to put it up here anyway.

It’s a video for “Driving This Road Until Death Sets You Free”, by Zombie-Zombie; the video is a reinterpretation of John Carpenter’s The Thing. Both are excellent, and prompted me to buy the album (A Land for Renegades) and a DVD of the John Carpenter classic. (I’ve never seen the other films in Carpenter’s Apocalypse Trilogy, Prince of Darkness and In the Mouth of Madness, and should probably do so.)

I think that the music for this video would also work extremely well with the Metallica video I posted recently.

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Two Short Films

23:51 06 Jan 2009. Updated: 16:51 28 Jan 2009

This one is apparently from 1977 or 1978, and I find it quite amazing that it was made in the Soviet Union at that time:

The second you’ve probably seen already (it’s the new Metallica video), but if you haven’t I think it’s definitely worth watching even if you’re not a Metallica fan (I’m not sure that I am, at this point, but the video is quite interesting):

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Left Behind: The Movie: The Dissection

11:19 16 Dec 2008. Updated: 17:00 28 Jan 2009

slacktivist, author of a colossal serial annotation of the first novel in the Left Behind series (here’s the first entry), has begun a series of comments on the movie.

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Fifty Percent Grey

20:57 05 Dec 2008. Updated: 17:06 28 Jan 2009

I really like this short film:

It’s Irish from 2001, but I’d never heard of it before yesterday. Incidentally, it appears that there was a disproportionately high Irish presence in the 2001 Oscar nominees for animated shorts.

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Let The Right One In Trailer

23:58 30 Oct 2008. Updated: 17:26 28 Jan 2009

This movie was recommended to me back in August, and I think it looks quite interesting:

That doesn’t look like your typical treatment of vampires at all, so I think I’ll have to go see it to see what they’re doing.

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Billy Jack

22:08 24 Oct 2008. Updated: 17:26 28 Jan 2009

Before reading this article by Dennis Perrin, I’d never heard of Billy Jack. But I think I might have to see this 1977 movie (contrary to what Perrin implies, it is available on DVD):

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