Movies

Discussion in 'General Chit-chat' started by infernovia, Oct 24, 2010.

  1. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    Not the prison we're talking about. It's the Santa Prisca one, which they use similarly to the "Batman: Venom" storyline.

    I thought more, and realized that there's a real good comparison to be made between Bane and Tyler Durden. They're both villains who are trying to break down society, and both movies are giving messages about why this isn't actually good thing, even though people seem to sometimes think it is. TDKR actually works to provide this message without all the confusion we've associated with Fight Club in earlier discussion, though.
  2. infernovia

    infernovia Well-Known Member

    Yeah, Bane's plan was not really that engaging. Still waiting for a new contestant that can go toe to toe with Fight Club.

    I agree with this.

    It's surprising how much this movie engaged me considering there were so many things it didn't do well. The performances given at the end help a lot though, Anne Hathaway was great throughout and Marion Cotillard was great near the end. Bane was meh, and that he sounded like Sean Connery threw me off a lot.
  3. Logo

    Logo Well-Known Member

    To me his voice was jarring at the start because it was so unexpected, but I really like it. I thought it was great the way it plays off Batman's voice which is also kind of unexpectedly gravely. I just wish they spent a little more time with Bane, sure he's not the only character when you consider Catwoman and stuff, but with the Joker you really got time to see who he was. Bane no so much. He does the awesome opening scene, but from then on he feels more like, "guy who shows up in a scene to physically challenge Batman". Even in the few other heist-y scenes he's in he's not nearly as prominent as the Joker was in his counterpart scenes. Take the chase scenes, in DK Joker is very active with his guns and playing chicken with Batman and you get a great sense of who he is. In TDKR the sister scene focuses more on Batman and Bane is just kinda 'generic bad guy'.

    That's not really to complain to much, Bane is fine to me except that I really liked him initially so I wanted him to just be this amazing character. Instead he's a pretty cool guy, but nothing super special.
  4. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    Bane is just the anti-batman. The voice just exists as a counterpoint to Batman's weird voice in this trilogy. You aren't supposed to need a backstory because we *know* his backstory. He grew up in that prison, and then did all the stuff Batman did back in Batman Begins to join the League of Shadows. Even his master plan is just the same plan R'as had back in the first film.

    I don't know... I mean, I guess I was disappointed as well that a lot of TDKR feels like a bit of a rehash of Batman Begins. But, I can't say that it wasn't appropriate. At least the evil plot in BB was just dumb. But in TDKR it's still dumb, but has a historic precedent and thematic relevance tied to its reuse, so I didn't mind as much.
  5. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    Bane was a let donw. His story is "i'm the tough guy in the prison who also blah blah blah spoilers". He has no reason or motivation thats well described, except one rehash(boring and poor) and one semi reason(which gets underdeveloped). Not to mention the methods used to defeat the villians were EXTREMELY anticlimactic.
  6. infernovia

    infernovia Well-Known Member

    I also found the the explosion pretty meh. There was almost no tension there. It's like, you don't even care about your life, how can I be moved by what you are doing? What's there to sacrifice when you don't even care about what you are sacrificing?I know the jump was supposed to help with that, but too little too late. The side effect of this is that I didn't feel like the city was in trouble at all.

    Also, I think they could have done the whole time shift a lot better. 2 months pass by, and you never really feel it. There are a bunch of other nitpicks I could go on, but those are the major stuff that comes in my mind.

    Even with all of that, I still liked it better than the Avengers. Besides the police not getting pwned by the automatic rifles, it was pretty good about keeping civilians and non-hero people out of the camera light when huge action was going down. And some of the scenes were just freaking awesome.
  7. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    In other news I watched catch me if you can finally. It's good, but I just didn't feel it was good as it was hyped up to be. No real issue with it. Just felt kinda long and I wanted to more know about the process than his screwed up family. Still really good.

    Also watched In Time. The acting is sub par but the concept was interesting and pretty decently executed. I cared more about learning the rules of the society than actually resolving the plot, but it was notable for having one scene which has some of the WORST special effects i've seen in a LONG time.

    In the end the plot is bad, the acting is bad, the characters are pretty damn cliche, but the pacing is ok and gimmick is kinda neat(if sadly underused). Worth an afternoon maybe.
  8. CWheezy

    CWheezy Well-Known Member

    I watched a documentary called "In Dog We Trust"

    It was about the current state of dogs in the US, and some scenes hit me pretty hard! I did not know how many NA don't spay or neuter their pets, and how many animals are put down each year
    Targies_Dog and Scarbos_Dog like this.
  9. LoneKnight

    LoneKnight Well-Known Member

    I kinda raged at In Time for all the wasted potential. Could have been really interesting but instead it was "capitalism is evil!"
  10. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    Not just capitalism is evil. Capitalism is a CONSPIRACY OOOOOOOOOO!
  11. Idealius

    Idealius Member

    The whole point behind Bane was the Talia reveal and that Batman had to have all the odds stacked against him to lose. Bane beat Batman by doing Batman's gig in reverse, using deception and theatrics. Bane was NOT the league of shadows, he was a mercenary much like Bruce Wayne called him out for being earlier in the movie. The great part of the movie is how Batman beat him without even knowing that.

    /Hollywood movie theorycrafting
  12. specs

    specs Well-Known Member

    I love my scripts when they're completed and I submit them to contests.

    Approximately 0.12 seconds later, I hate them.

    MOVIES.

    Has anybody seen Dragonball Evolution? Is it as bad as the legends foretold?
  13. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    I saw it on an airplane once. It is... not good. I mean, first off, realize that it's actually based on the starting events of the original Dragonball, and has none of the much better characterization that occured once the story got into DBZ when Toriyama started writing actual characters instead of 1-dimensional gags with faces. The Goku guy acts dumb without the adorable-ness of the actual Goku being a tiny kid in the comic, for example. And the entire film is paced weird... it's like they just randomly mush a bunch of events together (almost like they were doing seperate comicbook story arcs in a line... imagine that), instead of feeling like it has a single coherent story thread.

    It's one of those movies like Batman and Robin that you could probably salvage a good half hour of decent material from. But the rest is so awful that, you know... why bother?
    specs likes this.
  14. vivafringe

    vivafringe Moderator Staff Member

    Dark Knight Rises: was anyone else surprised that Catwoman, of all people, was the best thing about the entire movie? I mean what the heck? In general, the film was great and the ending was more satisfying than what I was expecting. I kind of wish the villains had been less lame, but maybe it's literally impossible to top what Heath Ledger did.
  15. infernovia

    infernovia Well-Known Member

    It really felt like Anne Hathaway's performance was a notch above everyone else's. I mean what's to say, Batman's character felt really incomplete and I haven't really thought much of Bale's acting besides competent. Alfred and Fox were forgettable. Blake had like one good scene, and was stuck caring for a school bus. Taliah wasn't really much of a character until the end (at which point, she was great). Bane could have been cool, but was either side-lined or wasn't interesting on his own. Great performance along with a reasonable motivation goes a long way I suppose.

    Though Nolan is just so competent of a director, that I usually don't think about how little sense the characters make.
  16. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    I don't know, that's not really how I felt. Catwoman seemed like one of the weirdest characters to me. None of the characters really entirely make sense... but it seemed like she's the one who even the other characters in the film are willing to point out that nothing she says makes sense. Why is she living with a random girl, and that apparently doesn't care that the girl gets stuck in a lawless city... and then abandons her at the end? Why does her need to "reset" her life of ambiguous previous crimes somehow lead her to supporting Bane?

    I honestly thought Christian Bale might have done the best acting. If you forget that his character has a seemingly random ability to heal from any wound in 1-second of non-standard medical magic, then he really pulls off selling the idea of Batman being a broken man in a way that the I don't think the film naturally contains.
  17. Logo

    Logo Well-Known Member

    I thought the implication was that the other woman was a prostitute and Catwoman was just staying there. The overall setup to me seems like she isn't able to just go get a nice place (being a wanted criminal and all) so she shacks up in a seedy place (possibly just an area that works as a brothel) and operates from there. She feels pity for the woman, and there's a contrasting parallel in the way both her and a prostitute use sexuality for profit, which is why she seems to be her protector. Yet still she is still Catwoman and looks out for herself more than anything (until Batman comes along).
  18. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    I think the girl is actually supposed to be another comic character or something. I can't remember who but my friend was talking about it.
  19. Logo

    Logo Well-Known Member

  20. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    And this is why I tend to not read comics.
  21. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    Oh... I already knew the background from the comics, so.... it was a rhetorical question, technically.

    But I will say I think it would have been both much more true to the comics (*yeah, up to debate, and depends which comics you've read), and much better for the plot in general, if it had been revealed in the film that the secret ability to "start over" that Catwoman kept searching for had actually been for Holly. It was totally not clear why this super-powered un-catchable criminal somehow needed an escape from her awesome life of running around with superheroes. And it would have made her much more relatable if it turned out her weird betrayals and mysterious was all her just honestly trying to help someone else.

    Like, I have to wonder if length concerns prevented them adding something about that? As it was, having Holly be a character was kind of irrelevant fluff for comics fans, while Catwoman ended up being weirdly mysteriously in a way that didn't seem to serve any purpose.
  22. specs

    specs Well-Known Member

    I enjoyed DKR, but I'd much rather watch Avengers. The latter feels much more coherent and its characters' motivations are both clear and conducive to great interactions. DKR is certainly more ambitious, but ambition doesn't win me over on its own.

    One day I'll have to catch Brave and the new Total Recall. On the latter, reviews seem to agree that this new one is less science-fiction than the original, which is disappointing, but I'm still curious.

    I'm not optimistic about The Dark Knight Returns animated feature coming up, despite enjoying Red Hood and Superman vs. The Elite.
  23. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    For the record these things are always so very hit or miss it seems. Some really interesting stuff has been done with doing animated adaptations of comic book material, but I feel like the best stuff is the stuff that distances itself correctly from its source material.
    specs likes this.
  24. specs

    specs Well-Known Member

    I'm on board with this type of thinking. Source material should inspire, not dictate.

    Harry Potter should have been a trilogy. Also I have dirty thoughts about Emma Watson. Before she was 18 After she hit 18 of course.
  25. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    I don't know. I think having a hard line in either direction leads to failure. I think what you guys mean is that a movie can fail if it leans too hard on reproducing source material from a different medium in a way that negatively affects the film. The most obvious example being that novels or comics often support fairly long tangential sections that add depth to their overall universe, but in a film unnecessary details often just destroy the pacing.

    At the same time... you can fail equally hard in a film by straying too far. I think Stardust is a good example of a film that gave up the chance to tell a really great story in a lame attempt to force an unnecessary climactic battle scene in at the end. Or, for example, noone's really going to accept a new Batman film that doesn't star Bruce Wayne, even though it's actually canonical to have several other characters be Batman...
    specs likes this.
  26. specs

    specs Well-Known Member

    I can't fathom taking points away from a hypothetical film based on but deviating greatly from its source material if said film is actually really fucking good. Like if, say, Dragonball Evolution had surprising cinematic depth, real themes/messages, great action, etc., I'd call it a great film and not care that Goku is a nerdy high-schooler.

    I do understand, though, that some folks want to see faithful representations of source material to varying degrees, from carbon copy (almost always bad) to keeping similar themes/ideas (Spider Man never finds his uncle's killer but the experience still molds him per the standard origin story) and whatnot.
  27. Jobber

    Jobber Active Member

    DB:E should've also cast an Asian guy to play Goku. Hollywood still doesn't think America is ready for Asian lead actors. Maybe they figured they'd make a lot more money if some white guy were front and center instead.

    With an Asian Goku, we could've gotten merely a bad movie (Rotten Tomatoes 14%) that nobody watched. Instead, we got a bad movie that nobody watched ($9,362,785 domestic box office) and that a bunch of people accused of being racist.
  28. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    The problem is when you deviate so much that people have to start wondering if you really did follow from the source material. Like, think Lawnmower Man... which I've never actually seen, but I know of the giant controversy between the production company and Steven King. But yeah, terrible movie too... I don't know of any good movies to use as an example of this. Although I'm sure they exist... probably some of the Philip K. Dick based sci-fi films probably work, but I couldn't name which one.

    Ooh, ooh... I've got it! "Starship Troopers". That's a not an entirely terrible space-war action movie about killing bug aliens. The problem is it has almost nothing whatsoever in common with the book. If it had just been billed as "generic action film", I would probably have enjoyed it. As it stands, my reaction was "how the F did you guys ruin such a brilliant novel???"

    I could probably find some anime examples, too... "Bokurano" comes to mind.
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  29. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    Saw Mean Girls and American Beauty.

    Short version is Mean Girls felt like the predecessor to Easy A, and wasn't that great, but ok.

    American Beauty is really quite good and probably one of my favorites and I can't believe I waited this long to see it.
    specs likes this.
  30. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    Bump because I can-
    1. King is a werid example. IMO the guy writes amazing short stories and good normal stories with very stupid endings. Now granted I wouldn't call lawnmower man good, but at the same time I wouldn't really agree with king in saying that the original shining movie was awful(which I think is a great example of being inspired by the source...not locked to it)

    Further I find it interesting that you mention starship troopers. A few people I know look at it as a little bit deeper than you first realize say it's really a giant attack on a military state(which is....totally opposite from the original? I can't honestly remember.)
  31. swordsman3003

    swordsman3003 Well-Known Member

    Personally, I found The Shining to be one of the most overrated movies I'd ever seen. But I think that list is populated with a number of Kubrick movies, so it may be something about the director's style.
  32. skeller

    skeller Well-Known Member

    I think that The Shining is the greatest horror film of all time (take that FW Murnau), and it's not even Kubrick's best film. But then again I worship at the altar of Kubrick.

    Which other Kubrick films didn't you like and why?
    Inkstud likes this.
  33. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't say I worship Kubrick, but I also think he's made some extremely great movies and would be curious to hear why you don't like him.
  34. Inkstud

    Inkstud Well-Known Member

    I also love Kubrick and agree that The Shining is probably the best horror film ever made. As much as I can't relate, though, I understand why Kubrick doesn't do it for some folks. A lot of people seem to get thrown of by the stylized dialogue and communication, complaining that it seems "fake" and so forth. Many of his films move slower than people are accustomed to, and though to me his ability to use this "lingering" to create mood is one of his greatest strengths, others just get bored by it, or automatically see such stylistic signatures as "pretentious."
    skeller likes this.
  35. skeller

    skeller Well-Known Member

    That's fair enough, Inkstud. But what's interesting is that really only applies to 2001 and the films he made after that -- Strangelove, The Killing, and Paths of Glory for example don't have that pacing at all. They're definitely stylized, but in kind of different ways.

    But yeah I can see how the glacial pacing of 2001, Eyes Wide Shut, or (especially) Barry Lyndon could be troublesome.
  36. specs

    specs Well-Known Member

    Not a big Kubrick fan. Not a Kubrick hater, either. ... I have no other thought to add to that, except fuck A.I., the worst movie ever made.
  37. skeller

    skeller Well-Known Member

    I don't think it's fair to blame the mess that is AI on Kubrick. But yeah, I really dislike that film.
    specs likes this.
  38. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    Yeah, the themes are unrelated or backwards as compared to the book... which is not terrible... the book has some weird politics, and changing that for mass consumption by the public is understandable.

    The worst part is really that the didn't even get the action right. The book has a tiny squad of humans with super-powered technology wiping out entire planets. And the bugs in the book are super intelligent and have their own crazy technology. And somehow the movie turned that into a million humans with rifles charging headfirst at a million weird monsters with claws.


    I'm kinda so-so on Kubrick, as well. I'd like to say I like him... and I do think Strangelove is an incredibly, incredibly good movie. But even 2001, I can just sort of take it or leave it... and I outright dislike some of his more recent films.
  39. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    To add I also feel The Shining is probably the best horror movie ever made, but I feel that's an area that has VERY little going for it. Horror movies so often just sell out and become cheap cash in's(gore fest, shock fest, or gimmick twist) that I feel there's VERY few decent horror movies.

    Honestly the only ones i can think that i'd recommend would be-
    Shining
    Night of the Hunter
    Saw 1(and NEVER EVER THE REST)
    and if we include semi horror-
    Seven
    Silence of the lambs
    and...I think that's it?

    Edit- Ninjaclaytus- Yeah I remember how completely off the tech was, but I did find the brain bug thing interesting and the way that you can look at the movie as "the humans killed their own colony to give people and excuse to go kill bugs".

    And my Kubrick list is-
    Great-
    Shining
    2001
    Strangelove
    Clockwork Orange

    Ok-
    FMJ(the first half is amazing. The end is just...odd)

    Wtf-
    Eye's wide shut- I've tried watching this on several occasions, and still have no earthly idea what happens in this movie.

    Haven't seen-
    Everything else.
  40. swordsman3003

    swordsman3003 Well-Known Member

    The only Kubrick movie I enjoyed was Dr. Strangelove, and I think that was because I'm a huge Peter Sellers fan.

    • The Shining: I was bored most of the movie. Nothing that happened in the movie scared me because nothing made enough sense to be scary. It was impossible to know what was happening because the movie used a bunch of stuff that people interpret, I suppose, as metaphor or something like that but it was lost on me. Like the visions of blood coming into the building - I have no idea what that was about, why it was happening, or why it should give me any emotional reaction. I agree with Stephen King that casting Jack Nicholson as the father totally gave away the plot right from the start. I did not feel like he 'went' insane because he seemed to be like an evil creepy guy right when he walked onto the screen. I couldn't figure out what was a hallucination, or really happening, or a metaphor, and as a result there was no tension in any of the scenes because I didn't know if what happened was consequential or not. Why was it even established that "the Shining" was such a thing in the movie? It was of no consequence or meaning, as far as I remember, that the kid had psychic powers. You could rewrite the movie without that element and pretty much everything that happened would hold up. I felt like the movie was just a series of sequences that were trying to make me feel scared, and it failed. I was scared way more by Jaws, Alien, and the Exorcist, which are from roughly the same film era (I watched a lot of horror moves in my teens when I could still be scared by them, the Shining included). My favorite thing about the movie was the kid's creepy imaginary friend voice.
    • A Clockwork Orange: I felt like Kubrick was challenging what I would accept watching in a film, and succeeded at getting me to conclude I hated everything that was shown to me in the movie. I did not enjoy myself or anything about the movie. I would not recommend it to anyone or ever watch it again. I would not pay money to watch a snuff flick. I wouldn't watch one for free. That's how I felt about this movie.
    • 2001: A Space Odyssey: Nothing happened in the first 25 minutes. I turned it off.
    I saw the films in, I believe, the order listed here and liked each one much less than the previous so I decided not to watch any more.
    specs likes this.
  41. specs

    specs Well-Known Member

    I can blame part of it on him for sure, as I felt I was watching a watered-down, "For Dummies" Pinochio analogue until Spielberg put the flippin' aliens in and turned a mediocre film into total trash.

    Even so, had the film ended underwater at the Blue Fairy or even when the kid saw his mass production boxes, I likely would have walked out of the movie thinking "meh, made me think, not great but not a wasted couple hours."
  42. skeller

    skeller Well-Known Member

    I'm not a huge horror fan either but here are legitimately great horror films off the top pf my head:

    Nosferatu, Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead (1978 but I like the remake ok), Don't Look Now, The Thing (1981), The Exorcist, Evil Dead 2, Cabin in the Woods, Shawn of the Dead... there are a lot other classic horror films I've not seen.
  43. Eji1700

    Eji1700 Well-Known Member

    If Stephen King actually said that about Jack Nicholson I find that tremendously funny. I like King's writing and all but I never felt that "whats the dad going to do" was even a question in the book, and I feel the movie has a MUCH better ending. That said the powers don't serve too much of a point throughout the movie, except to let the kid contact the groundskeeper, and to get you comfortable with the idea that shit's weird. In a way it's nothing more than a glorified haunted house(bad shit has happened so bad shit keeps happening), but I can see how it wouldn't always connect with someone. There is a LOT of deeper metaphor junk(daddy's a pedo), but I certainly didn't get any of that when I first saw it, and I really think that the things that make the movie horrifying are 1. the casting 2. the ambiance 3. the shock scenes 4. being up at 3AM and making the connection about the pantry scene.

    So all that said I'm not really defending it, just putting out there what drew me to it. I'm always curious to hear why people don't like it though becuase i've heard some rather interesting takes on the movie from it.

    As for clock and 2001- both movies IMO are about the ending, and 2001 is special effects porn for the time.
  44. Inkstud

    Inkstud Well-Known Member

    Yeah, Horror as a genre suffers from a real deficit of quality, which is a shame because excellent horror films can hit you in such a powerfully visceral spot. I think they're just really hard to do right, though. A lot of my favorite "horror" films are ones that strike at that sublime, creepy place inside you and build a sense of dread. Eyes Wide Shut (I think this film is great and way too maligned) and Lost Highway aren't really horror films, but god damn if they don't get under my skin and into the dark corners of my brain. On the other hand, Let the Right One In is probably more easily categorized as horror, but the reason it's great has, at core, less to do with the suspense or horror aspects of it at all.
    skeller likes this.
  45. skeller

    skeller Well-Known Member

    Re: Lost Highway, David Lynch is the king of horror that isn't really horror. Mulholland Drive features a genuinely terrifying scene that I can't really explain, and the shots of Bob in Twin Peaks looking up at the camera haunt me to this day.
  46. swordsman3003

    swordsman3003 Well-Known Member

    My favorite Horror movies are the ones that deal with a...somewhat plausible/realistic problem but then take it up to 11.

    I like Jaws for instance - the idea of being at sea with sharks that want to eat you is really scary at a gut level because it's the one place where people have no power. In the movie the shark is ridiculous but my disbelief gets suspended due to good acting and directing.

    Also The Exorcist is a really great horror experience because, I think, so much effort is built up into suspending audience disbelief. Most all of the characters react in a realistic way - they go for therapy, medical exams, etc etc the mother gradually gets to her wit's end and asks the priest to do an exorcism as a last effort because she thinks it will have psychosomatic effects; she's not even religious. For that matter, neither is the priest! And for the bulk of the movie everything the girl does is almost consistent with having some kind of psychiatric issue. So the way the movie spends like 100 minutes approaching the issue I think gets you into the right frame of mind to believe, when it gets to the final part of the movie, that the girl really is possessed. It's a subtle build-up I always enjoy.

    My main problem with most supernatural movies is that the antagonist/threat is so ill-defined and seems to have nearly unlimited power that I don't feel horror I feel despair. At some point, if I were in that position, I'd be like "fuck, if you're going to kill me, kill me. I'd rather die now than live through this." I lose all sympathy for the characters because they're just powerless to struggle against whatever the foe is. The Grudge is a great example of this problem in my opinion.

    I really like horror movies that set up precisely what the protagonist is trying to accomplish and how it can be done. This enhances my sympathy for the characters. Alien and Jaws are great examples of this.
  47. Bucky

    Bucky Well-Known Member

    2001: A Space Odyssey loses a lot when the screen is smaller than the person watching it.
  48. Claytus

    Claytus Well-Known Member

    Hmmm... you know, I actually think I feel the exact opposite about this.

    The problem with any movie that's taking the "somewhat realistic" turn... is that at some point, there's just a cutoff point where the realism disappears. It's like, Jaws is fine until somehow the shark is now bulletproof??? (To be honest, I love Jaws... but that movie works because it's about the main characters fear of water, not really about fear of the shark)

    It's way scarier to have an antagonist that you don't understand.

    (Also... thinking about this, I'm not sure what you think the difference between horror and despair is??? Those seem like synonyms.)

    And, I'm sure it's come up before in this thread... but let's get Session 9 on the list of good horror films.
  49. Lofobal

    Lofobal Well-Known Member

    As I remember it it opens in Egypt and there's a bunch of obvious supernaturaley stuff right at the beginning. Then we go through this long period where we're supposed to pretend we don't know it's supernatural? I watched it about 14 months ago, so I don't know how well my memory serves. Overall it felt dated and I didn't like the worldview it reinforced, though I generally have the latter issue when it comes to horror films.
  50. swordsman3003

    swordsman3003 Well-Known Member

    So does Star Wars but I loved that movie from the first time I saw it at age 5 and every time I rewatched it - only once getting to see it on the big screen. The movie has shit happening right from the start and it gets me interested. Star Wars tries to tell a story, which is really important to me in what is usually a narrative medium like film.

    If the best thing about 2001 is that it's some kind of theme-park-ride experience that's supposed to blow you away visually, Kubrick failed by having 5 minutes (!) of landscape shots at the start. Why not do something at the start to explain the tone or purpose of the movie? I'm %100 sure that if I saw the movie at a theater without knowing anything about it or who made it, I would have walked out in about 10-15 minutes. It's just too boring for me to get interested. Why would I waste my time? Most movies do something to demonstrate how great the movie is going to be or what it's about in the first 10 minutes so you'll be interested. The opening scenes of 2001 demonstrated to me that the movie was about nothing in particular, had no story, no purpose, and was boring. Maybe it changed later but I did not and do not care to stick around to find out.

    If the movie was so great because of the special effects, why not make a movie that tells a story in addition to having good special effects? A special effect without a purpose is exciting for all of 5 seconds. Star Wars is a great counterexample - a movie that also had mindblowing special effects for its time, but had explosive and enduring popularity because there's more going on in the film besides just that.


    It just shows a guy who we later find out is a priest (I think it doesn't say that he's a priest at the start) at an archaeological dig who finds a creepy statute. Nothing supernatural happens. But to be honest I never understood the inclusion of the opening sequence. I would have cut it; the movie is already pretty long. It adds nothing important.

    Horror: An intense feeling of fear, shock, or disgust.

    Despair: The complete loss or absence of hope.

    In my experience, if a movie overloads on just how terrible and powerful the antagonist is in a movie, I lose my ability to feel horror because it is overwhelmed by despair.

    Usually this happens when I feel like a character would be better off just committing suicide; why suffer horribly and then die when you could just die and get it over with. This often hurts my suspension of disbelief.

    For me, there has to be some way that the protagonist understands how to overcome the problem in the story and it has to seem attainable. This is my problem with the bulk of supernatural horror stories - if the evil force is too ill-defined and appears to be capable of anything, why oppose it? Sometimes the antagonist seems omnipotent, at which point resistance just seems stupid to me.

    One of the reasons I liked Stephen King's novels, or at least the ones that I read, was that even though he had these sorts of vague but very threatening enemies, it always felt like there was something the heroes could do. The book IT forever struck me as one of the best-written horror novels right from the start when one of the characters, when told that It has returned and he needs to face It, immediately commits suicide. Later, when the reader comes to understand just how powerful and evil It is, his reaction seems totally realistic. However, because we know at the start that It was defeated in the past, the writer implies that It isn't omnipotent and that maybe there's a specific known way to beat It even if the reader doesn't know what that is. For me, that is the sublime mix of having something so unknown yet super powerful and evil without provoking despair in the reader (at least despair that would hurt suspension of disbelief).
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