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Discussion Starter · #181 ·
Those Who Wish Me Dead (2021)
Double feature
Matinee Cinema showing and then streamed on HBOMAX


Those Who Wish Me Dead is an action/thriller/disaster movie starring Angelina Jolie as Hannah, a brave smoke-jumper who must protect a young boy from ruthless assassins in the Montana wilderness.
I hope this gets a US blu-ray release I will pre-order !
Is is only in Finland as of now.


A boy watches his father murdered over a secret he knows, and he must escape the assassins himself after they discover he is missing. Angelina Jolie tasked with protecting him is a firefighter stationed in a fire tower and dealing with past trauma.

A Stellar cast and a great child actor (Finn Little) elevate this action thriller to more than the sum of its parts. Great moments that will have you cheering and on the edge of your seat. Great direction and some beautiful cinematography. I have not seen Angelina Jolie in a singular action role in over 10 years very refreshing to see her in action once again. Apparently Angelina Jolie did most of the stunts in the film and they were not easy to execute.

It would be an understatement to say that Angelina Jolie is put through the wringer in writer-director Taylor Sheridan's new film " Those Who Wish Me Dead."

She is beaten and bruised by nature, men and even some of her own choices -- like a crazy stunt involving a parachute and a pickup truck. Jolie has always thrown herself into physically demanding roles, but her Montana firefighter Hannah Farber may take the cake for most cuts and shiners sustained in 24 hours. This is a film in which she's running from hitmen, raging forest fires and past traumas. Apparently her face and body are the physical representation of that. Even so, it's always a pleasure to see her back on screen, which has become rarer and rarer lately. I am a huge Jolie fan and she does not disappoint here.




I went into this film blind and I was surprised by the amount of delicious violence and Gore. Expect some intense peril and violence: A boy and other children are in peril, and women are punched and treated roughly by men. Characters are burned in wildfires. There are guns and shooting, blood spatters, bloody wounds, and gory moments (including a dead body with a chunk of skull missing).

Monumental edge-of-your-seat action, first rate character building of the onscreen bond between Angelina Jolie and Finn Little that gets you emotionally invested in the events unfolding on screen. " Those Who Wish Me Dead" is absolutely an underrated hidden gem .
 

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Discussion Starter · #182 ·
A QUIET PLACE
PART II

Opening night Cinema showing 5/27/2021
Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi
Following the events at home, the Abbott family now face the terrors of the outside world. Forced to venture into the unknown, they realize the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats lurking beyond the sand path.

Director:John Krasinski
Writers:John Krasinski, Scott Beck
Stars:Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, Cillian Murphy

The film was extremely entertaining. Thrilling and Suspenseful. It’s bigger, faster, coarser ,louder, and still menages to create tense scenes filling the theater with silent observers at times where there is absolutely no sound from the film. I sat in a row with 10 adolescent junior high schoolers who basically we're chatting and giddy with excitement ( its fun to be young ) ! I thought to myself "oh boy they're going to talk through the whole **** movie" . But here's the thing. Nope. John Krasinski was able to get the moviegoers to be absolutely silent with his writing , directing and the use of the film score and sound effects . It's a very brilliant film and the fact that you could hear a pin drop at certain intense points in the movie is an achievement. Krasinski proves once again his prowess in directing and writing .

The ideas behind the film are so strong that a gradual change up of more dialogue, more action and more monsters does not disappoint ! A nerve-wracking continuation of its predecessor, A Quiet Place Part II expands the terrifying world of the franchise without losing track of its heart. I will definitely be pre-ordering the Blu-ray when it's released .
 

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Discussion Starter · #183 ·
The Criterion Collection
FYI for those that are interested ends May 31st
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Discussion Starter · #184 ·
The National Memorial Day Concert (2021)
PBS
Watch this special presentation of the National Memorial Day Concert, with new performances and tributes filmed in different locations around the country. America’s night of remembrance honors our troops, veterans, wounded warriors, all those who have given their lives for our nation, and their families. Sunday, May 30, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT.
My fathers potential burial site Vietnam. MIA 1967 Herman Ludwig Knapp
View attachment 3140086
Where'er you walk: sung by

Rob Knapp in memory of my 'Father'
 

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Discussion Starter · #185 · (Edited)
Shakma (1990)


6.5/10 Free on Tubi
You boys haven't lived until you watch the substandard cess·pool of a B film, Shakma.

Shakma (also known as Panic in the Tower) is a 1990 American horror film directed by Tom Logan and Hugh Parks. It stars Christopher Atkins, Amanda Wyss (A Nightmare on Elm Street ), Ari Meyers and Roddy McDowall.
Shakma has a lot going for it. A rabid baboon killing a team of medical school jackasses is inherently entertaining. Six medical students and a professor are locked inside a medical building with a murderous experimental baboon when an innocent game of Dungeons and Dragons turns deadly.


Yup, the acting was so painful . You know it is a sad day as an actor when you are shown up by the likes of Sam - Christopher Atkins! Our hero. Atkins acting compared the the rest of the cast was "Oscar worthy". Truth be told Christopher Atkins was more than decent in he's role. The stand-out is baboon TYPHOON as SHAKMA . He does nothing but chase the students into various rooms throughout the building, whereupon he screeches and throws himself repeatedly against the door until he gets bored. I cannot even begin to describe how much doors **** Shakma off. He absolutely hates the things and it is totally gut busting hysterical to watch.... As absurd as this film was I enjoyed watching "Shakma" rip, mangle and maul the entire eminently forgettable cast. I can see how this film has gained a small cult following over the years.

Shoo , Skakma , shoo ! Leave sexy Tina..... "A Nightmare on Elm Street" alone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #186 ·

The story of Crown Princess Märtha, who fought for her country and her marriage during the tragic events of World War II.
Creator:Alexander Eik
Stars:Kyle MacLachlan, Sofia Helin, Tobias Santelmann

"Atlantic Crossing," a prestigious Norwegian period drama starring Sofia Helin ("The Bridge") as Crown Princess Märtha, and Kyle MacLachlan ("Twin Peaks") as U. S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
The limited series, written by Eik and Linda May Kallestein ("Wisting"), sheds light on Martha's journey from Norway to the White House where she sought refuge and became close to U. S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The Crown Princess tried to convince Roosevelt to save her country and Europe from Nazi Germany at a time when American voters were strongly opposed to being drawn into another world war.

Atlantic Crossing an interesting time in history revisited. PBS Masterpiece Theatre , always excellent programming worth watching!! The story is well written, and there is certainly a lot of tension .Atlantic Crossing is not a documentary and should not be viewed as one. As a historical series, it is exciting, emotional and engaging. This is wonderful TV entertainment and a fantastic period piece that Masterpice Theatre is so good at. It was an interesting character study of Crown Princess Martha superbly acted by actress Sofia Helin .She portrayed the character very well as she matured throughout the series from a somewhat naive soul maturing into a determined woman . Tobias Santelmann, Kyle MacLachlan rounded out the superb cast excellent in their respective roles. I thoroughly enjoyed Atlantic Crossing well worth my time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #187 ·
The Lodge (2020)
Blu-Ray

First Time View in the cinema


Brooding and dark; Dour yet riveting.

A soon-to-be stepmom is snowed in with her fiancé's two children at a remote holiday village. Just as relations begin to thaw between the trio, some strange and frightening events take place.
Directors: Veronika Franz, Severin Fiala
Cinematography: Thimios Bakatakis
Screenplay: Veronika Franz, Severin Fiala, Sergio Casci
Music by : Danny Bensi & Saunder Jurriaans
Stars:
Richard Armitage, Alicia Silverstone, Riley Keough, Jaeden Martell, Lia McHugh

Arthouse horror is on a tear right now. The Lodge absolutely fits into this niche with the films artistic sensibilities an excellent cinematography. The musical score by Danny Bensi & Saunder Jurriaans truly adds to the sense of dread ; very effective and superbly composed. The film does an excellent job dealing with the pain of loss. Brace your self for forbidding & brutal film in the vain of Ari Aster and Oz Perkins works. Directors: Severin Fiala, Veronika Franz and Writers: Sergio Casci, Severin Fiala very much dialed in a sense of of claustrophobic dread.

The acting is excellent. Alicia Silverstone, Riley Keough were on point and conveyed their dramatic sense of emotions fantastically. The children Jaeden Martell, Lia McHughreally did a great job in this film as well, maintaining the somber tone.
Spoiler
And in doing so the children are dealt serious dose of comeuppance.

Alicia Silverstone

Riley Keough

The Lodge has one of the best setups I have seen for a psychological horror film in a long time. There is ample misdirection that severs the dark plot line with telling a compelling human-story that slowly builds up the tension to a powerful climax.

The Lodge is very much a slow burner,it manages to create interpersonal tension among the characters intensely . The screenplay is masterful at toeing a 'fine line' between what is real and who is at fault for what is occurring. Remarkably well-done psychological Drama, Horror, Thriller. Dour and riveting ; It left me emotional drained and pondering long after the credits rolled. If you enjoy a slow burn, psychological horror that is truly disturbing, and very unsettling. The Lodge is what you want to watch. Brooding and dark film.
 

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Discussion Starter · #188 ·
No code has to be inserted here.
Kino Lorber | 1939 | 135 min | Not rated | Aug 03, 2021 (2 Months)
Union Pacific (1939)
TCM First Time View
There's plenty here to like. Barbara Stanwyck's excellent acting is the number one reason to seek this film out . Stanwyck especially appealing as a plucky Irish lass willing to face reality squarely in the eyes.




The director originally wanted Jean Arthur, who had starred in The Plainsman, for the female lead. Studio publicity also named Irene Dunne as a potential star (alongside Joel McCrea and Fredric March). Instead, Barbara Stanwyck took on the role. She quickly proved herself to DeMille by insisting on doing her own stunts, always arriving on set early and fully prepared and never complaining about difficult location conditions. In his memoirs, he would answer the question most Hollywood directors dread, "Who is your favorite actress?" by writing, "...I have never worked with an actress who was more co-operative, less temperamental, and a better workman, to use my term of highest compliment, than Barbara Stanwyck.... Barbara's name is the first that comes to mind, as one whom a director can always count on to do her work with all her heart".
Barbara Stanwyck

Barbara Stanwyck (born Ruby Catherine Stevens; July 16, 1907 - January 20, 1990) was an American actress, model, and dancer. A stage, film, and television star, she was known during her 60-year career as a consummate and versatile professional for her strong, realistic screen presence. A favorite of directors including Cecil B. DeMille, Fritz Lang, and Frank Capra, she made 85 films in 38 years before turning to television.

Stanwyck was well praised during her 6 decades in Hollywood. She received four Best Actress nominations. It is widely thought that Stanwyck should have won an Academy Award for Best Actress rather than being just nominated.

She received an Honorary Oscar in 1982, the Golden Globe Cecil B. DeMille Award in 1986 and was the recipient of several other honorary lifetime awards. She was ranked as the 11th greatest female star of classic American cinema by the American Film Institute.
Stanwyck as a Ziegfeld girl in a 1924

Union Pacific (1939)
In 1862, Central Pacific and Union Pacific Railroads compete westward across the wilderness toward California.
Director:Cecil B. DeMille
Writers:Walter DeLeon (screen play), C. Gardner Sullivan (screen play) | 3 more credits »
Stars:Barbara Stanwyck, Joel McCrea, Akim Tamiroff

Veteran Dick Allen (Robert Preston) and gambler Sid Campeau (Brian Donlevy) plot to derail the construction of the Union Pacific Railroad at the behest of crooked banker Asa M. Barrows, a major investor in a competing railroad line who will profit from any delay. Meanwhile, Allen and his old friend, railroad boss Jeff Butler (Joel McCrea), compete for the attention of Mollie Monahan (Barbara Stanwyck), beautiful postmistress and daughter of the railroad engineer.
Cecil B. DeMille's sprawling, adventurous film takes on the building of the first trans-continental rail road. The actual building of the track takes second stage to the fates of three employees; Joel McCrea as the Union Pacific hired gun, Robert Preston as his war buddy working with a crooked bank man to stall the proceedings, and Barbara Stanwyck as the mail woman caught in between them for their loyalty and love. The love triangle may be contrived, but the three stars are believable. Preston conveying a surprising amount of sympathy in a colorful good/bad guy, a murderer melodramatically delivered by the love of a good woman. DeMille keeps the 140 minutes moving with exciting action, some wonderful set pieces, two or three exciting finales -- robberies, a train wreck and an enthralling Indian attack. The tale is well-directed, and the cinematography is splendid. The special effects are impressive. The film was nominated for an Oscar for Best Special Effects.


In reading about its premier I learned some fascinating trivia !

"The biggest premiere in movie history."
Apr 1939 Hollywood Reporter news items reported that Union Pacific's world premiere in Omaha, Nebraska was a gala "three-day celebration" that drew crowds of over 250,000, instantly doubling the city's population and requiring the deployment of eight national guard troops to help local authorities maintain order. Large crowds were also said to have gathered at many stops along the train route from Hollywood to Omaha, as it was publicized that a special train carrying, among others, producer and director Cecil B. De Mille, and stars Barbara Stanwyck and Joel McCrea, was making its way to Nebraska for the event. The film's premiere took place at three Omaha theaters simultaneously. A 22 Apr 1939 HR news item noted that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was to officially start the premiere proceedings by pressing a button in Washington, D. C. that would open Omaha's civic auditorium. An advertisement in HR claimed that Union Pacific's premiere, which was accompanied by parades, special radio broadcasts and a banquet, was the "biggest world premiere in motion picture history." The ad also notes that following the premiere, De Mille was joined by many of the film's stars aboard an antique train for the continuation of the fifteen-day, coast-to-coast promotional tour, which was scheduled to stop at thirty cities around the country. Now how awesome this adventure would have been to be apart of for the lover of cinema !


 

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Discussion Starter · #189 ·
The Unfinished Dance (1947)
Turner Classic Movies/DVD


Don't let the movie poster fool you... this film is full of great melodrama and not all saccharine. It's definitely worth seeking out if you can find it on DVD Amazon.com: The Unfinished Dance [Remaster]: Margaret O'Brien, Cyd Charisse, Karin Booth, Esther Dale, Thurston Hall, Henry Koster: Movies & TV. An opportunity to see one of the era's finest young actresses Margaret O'Brien giving one of her most emotional performances. 8/10

Director:Henry Koster
Writers:Paul Morand (story "La Morte du Cygne"), Myles Connolly
Stars: Margaret O'Brien, Cyd Charisse, Karin Booth

The Unfinished Dance's performance sequences may be less classical and more Hollywood, but the film has dramatic elements: passionate devotion, melodrama, guilt, great production values, Technicolor .-- this film has amazing tapestry of colors and The Unfinished Dance also has MGM's soon-to-be prima ballerina, Cyd Charisse, and one of the best child actors of all time, Margaret O'Brien.
According to O'Brien, her mother, a former dancer, had seen the French film "La Morte du Cygne"and brought the idea of remaking it to MGM. The 9-year old Margaret trained for six months with Russian ballet teachers, and did her own dancing in the film. Margaret's prep really pays off and I could tell she had natural elegance and grace in her body movements in particular her flowing arm gestures.

Comedian Danny Thomas made his film debut in The Unfinished Dance, playing O'Brien's guardian. It was a warm and appealing performance. But Thomas's film career never really took off. When he turned to television in the early 1950s he became a huge star.

The Unfinished Dance, which sets the action at the Ballet School of the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Young Meg Merlin, ( Margaret O'Brain ) who hero-worships a dancer at her elite ballet school, is heartbroken when prima ballerina La Darina (the stunning Karin Booth) arrives to rival her idol. So Meg devises a plan. One little tug on a light switch while La Darina dances Swan Lake will ruin the performance. But Meg pulls the wrong switch - the one that opens a stage trapdoor - and sends the prima ballerina into a career-ending plunge to the floor below. Margaret O'Brien and Cyd Charisse play two generations of dancers in this lavish Technicolor film that combines a tragic story of guilt and broken dreams with the opulence of ballet (among the elegant visuals: the mirrored floor that emulates the swans' watery domain). It's a must-see for fans little Margaret O'Brian or Cyd Charisse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #190 ·

Untamed Youth (1957)
Spotlight: Juvenile Delinquents - Thursdays in June
This month-long Spotlight examines the “juvenile delinquent” movies of the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s, when the subject of youthful alienation and anti-social behavior was a popular one in both exploitation flicks and more serious studies. Movies about youthful crime had been made throughout the 1920s and ‘30s, but it was in the following decades that the issue was presented as a social problem in need of solutions. TCM Juvenile Delinquent films cover the period 1945-1967 .

A hugely under-appreciated B movie. Surprisingly good performances from Mamie Van Doren, Lori Nelson and a largely youthful cast. (The numbers) are well integrated into the story and interestingly staged. Miss Van Doren establishes her right to be classified as a female Presley with the rock-and-roll numbers.
Mamie Van Doren's 1957 movie "Untamed Youth".

Director:Howard W. Koch
Writers:John C. Higgins (screenplay), Stephen Longstreet (story)
Stars:Mamie Van Doren, Lori Nelson, John Russell

Shocking Juvenile "Punishment" Farm!
Kids Turned Rock-N-Roll Wild -- and the "House of Correction" That Makes 'Em Wilder!
Starring the Girl Built Like a Platinum Powerhouse -- Mamie Van Doren!


Untamed Youth
(1957), an exploitation film directed by Howard W. Koch and released through Warner Bros., stars Mamie Van Doren and Lori Nelson as sisters who are arrested for skinny-dipping and sentenced to labor on a farm run by corrupt owner John Russell. Van Doren, playing a would-be musical star, has some musical numbers in which she reportedly became the first female to perform rock ‘n’ roll songs on film.
Directed by Howard W. Koch (who in a few years would become head of production for Paramount Pictures) and produced by Koch's longtime producing partner Aubrey Schenck, Untamed Youth has a script by John C. Higgins, talented writer of many films that are considered classics today, like T-Men (1947), Raw Deal (1948), Border Incident (1949) and Sabotage Agent (1943, story credit).

The ad campaign for Untamed Youth (1957) was lurid and sensationalistic -- just like the movie itself. A low-budget, campy exploitation film designed to showcase the huge-chested, blonde starlet Mamie Van Doren, Untamed Youth succeeded both in making certain critics and morality crusaders rather angry, and in earning quite a bit of money for distributor Warner Brothers. (When the Catholic Legion of Decency condemned this movie, it only made more people want to see it.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #191 ·
Cries & Whispers (1972)
Viskningar och rop (1972)
Blu-ray
/ HBOMAX
When a woman dying of cancer in early twentieth-century Sweden is visited by her two sisters, long-repressed feelings between the siblings rise to the surface.

Director: Ingmar Bergman
Writer: Ingmar Bergman
Stars: Harriet Andersson, Liv Ullmann, Kari Sylwan

A woman lays dying of cancer in a remote country estate (Harriet Andersson) and receives no comfort from her emotionally cold, self-serving sisters (Liv Ullmann and Ingrid Thulin), and gains her only solace from a saintly and mistreated servant (Kari Sylwan). Ingmar Bergman's Cries and Whispers astonishingly and in a quietly moving manner finds hope and affirmation in a harsh, chastising, and utterly bleak story. Cries and Whispers may well be Swedish master Ingmar Bergman's bleakest film. It is full of the raw emotions that are frequently on display in many of his best melancholy films. As a friend so poignantly pointed out as we disused the film after the credits had rolled .


The film's visual style is quite extraordinary. For example, lush red colors frequently fill up the screen and during key transitions completely erase faces and objects. In various close-ups light and shadows are also carefully captured to reveal different feelings and emotions. Bergman shot the film with the great cinematographer Sven Nykvist, whose brilliant work won him an Oscar Award for Best Cinematography in 1974.
The four leads are outstanding acted by a band of Bergman familiars. As far as the subtitles are concerned these are palatable and easy to follow . There is little film score but there are segments with a haunting cello that absolutely brings out the dark, brooding and bleak tone Bergman is striving to achieve. This is a very depressing film but it's definitely worth seeking out has its extremely unique in its cinematography and structure of the story telling. Very good Art-house cinema .

 

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Discussion Starter · #192 ·
During the Cold War, at a California atomic research plant, an FBI agent and a Scotland Yard inspector join forces to eliminate a foreign nuclear spy ring operating in the USA and the UK.

Director:Gordon Douglas
Writers:George Bruce (screenplay), Bertram Millhauser (story)
Stars:Louis Hayward, Dennis O'Keefe, Louise Allbritton

Walk a Crooked Mile is a anti-communist film noir crime film directed by Gordon Douglas and starring Louis Hayward and Dennis O'Keefe. Excellent political thriller. 1948 is the year Hollywood joined the anti-communist crusade, to the film credit Raymond Burr plays the "heavy" in a Lenin-like goatee, a sinister gathering of "comrades", and Hollywood's version of commie rhetoric about how the individual doesn't matter in the global scheme of things.

Director Gordon Douglas drew on mounting anti-Communist hysteria to create one of the first Cold War films. Producer Edward Small stood tall in a battle against FBI director J. Edgar Hoover to produce the film without interference, arguing the Bureau was fair game for fictionalization. The film was originally titled FBI vs Scotland Yard but this was changed at the request of J. Edgar Hoover.
This is an interesting film noir, I very much enjoyed the Documentary flavor , narrated by Reed Hadley's credible narration voice . On-the-site filming of locales adds authenticity. Affects a semi-documentary style that's constantly on the movie, hopping from city to city and from surveillance stakeouts to places as mundane as a laundry service. George Bruce has loaded his script with nifty twists that add air of reality to the melodramatic goings on in the story. "Walked a Crooked Mile" is a engaging 40's spy , espionage film and worth seeking out.

Offered on DVD TCM Vault Collection
Columbia Pictures Film Noir Classics IV DVD United States
So Dark The Night / Johnny O'Clock / Walk A Crooked Mile / Between Midnight And Dawn / Walk East On Beacon! Turner Home Entertainment 1946-1952 5 Movies 443 min Not rated Nov 12, 2014.
 

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Discussion Starter · #193 ·
King Kong Escapes (1967)
Multi-Format Blu-ray
Inspired by the Rankin/Bass cartoon, the evil Dr. Who captures King Kong to dig for Element X when his mechanical doppelganger, Mechani-Kong, is unable to do the task. Kong escapes and soon confronts his mechanical double.
King Kong Escapes, released in Japan as King Kong's Counterattack, Kingu Kongu no Gyakushu), is a 1967 Japanese-American science-fiction kaiju film and is the second Toho-produced films featuring King Kong. The film was directed by Ishiro Honda with special effects by Eiji Tsuburaya and stars Rhodes Reason, Linda Jo Miller, Akira Takarada, Mie Hama, Eisei Amamoto, with Haruo Nakajima as King Kong and Yu Sekida as Mechani-Kong and Gorosaurus. The film is a loose adaptation of the Rankin/Bass Productions series, The King Kong Show and was the second and final Toho-produced film featuring King Kong. King Kong Escapes was released in Japan on July 22, 1967 and released in the United States on June 19, 1968.

It lacks the awe-inspiring effects of the original, King Kong Escapes still manages to be one of the more enjoyable films inspired by the '33 classic.

Great movie. The epitome of fun and cheesy. Also check out Dr Who's voice.... The Burgermeister Meisterburger from Santa Claus is coming to town.

A one time marriage between Toho and Rankin/Bass of Rudolph the red nose reindeer fame . A unique entry in kaiju film history! The effects and costumes are enjoyably cheesy, and the monster action is pure Toho monster kaiju goodness. What more could you want?

Appearances: Monsters
King Kong
Gorosaurus
Giant Sea Serpent
Mechani-Kong.

 

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Discussion Starter · #194 ·
I am going for it . There's only one way to see Black Widow ....in the large theater in 3D

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Black Widow
XD Luxury Lounger RealD 3D
Friday, July 9 at 2:45 pm
Cinemark Tinseltown USA and XD

1545 E. Cheyenne Mountain Blvd., Colorado Springs CO 80906
Auditorium 11

Tickets
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XD 3D Matinee
(3) We are Vaccinated
Seats: F13, F14, F15

 

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Discussion Starter · #195 ·
Gaia (2021)

I think this art-house eco creature feature looks very trippy and we should put this on our horror to -do lists between now and October :) Rated R
In Theaters Friday
June 18


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Gaia
Digital Cinema Luxury Lounger
Friday, June 18 at 4:25 pm
Cinemark Tinseltown USA and XD

1545 E. Cheyenne Mountain Blvd., Colorado Springs CO 80906
Auditorium 16

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Discussion Starter · #196 ·

Creator:Eric Heisserer
Stars:Jessie Mei Li, Ben Barnes, Archie Renaux

The show uses a multiple Point -of -View narrative, with the primary storyline involving an orphaned girl Alina (A wonderful Jessie Mei Lie who especially shines) coming to terms with her newfound powers as a Grisha (witch). In a world where dark forces have taken over, a young mapmaker, Alina Starkov, accidentally discovers that she has the power to change the fate of the war. She is the only one who has the power to summon light and this will make her play a key role in this war.


I really enjoy a dose of STEAMPUNK and high fantasy . This Netflix series is chalked full of both with very high production value. Shadow and Bone has both a grand vision and, seemingly, the blockbuster budget needed to pull it off. In other words, if you like fantasy, then do check out Shadow and Bone. And if you're not really into fantasy, then I would still recommend that you give it a shot. It is a gorgeous production that has lots of very dark and sinister moments. The world-building is very grand and impressive. Soul-stirring music, and eye-catching CGI. The plot is riveting and the characters have been fleshed out as superbly as they have been acted.

Shadow and Bone is a very popular young adult fantasy series from author Leigh Bardugo. Her debut novel, Shadow & Bone, is the first book in the Grisha . Do Shadow and Bone and Tsarpunk belong anywhere along the Steampunk spectrum? I found this article talking with Shadow and Bone author Leigh Bardugo.

Today we welcome Leigh Barduo who's going to tell us all about Tsarpunk, because Tsarpunk is awesome.

You said Tsarpunk started out with tongue firmly in cheek. But what's the verdict now? Do you think of Shadow and Bone as High Fantasy, Steampunk, or something else?

Hell if I know. To be considered a real sub-sub-genre, I think Tsarpunk wouldn't just be about Russian influence as window-dressing but also about incorporating a distinctly different worldview and spirit. I hope the Grisha Trilogy does that, but I'm not going to be the one to claim it. If the series shares the revolutionary and DIY sensibilities of punk, then that makes me happy. If I get to rub up against the innovation and ingenuity of Steampunk, I'm honored by the association. If Shadow and Bone stays firmly grounded in High Fantasy, I'm good with that, too. As long as no one calls it smooth jazz, we'll be just fine.

~Leigh Bardugo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #197 ·
Katla is a chilling new eight-part Netflix series that has recently dropped on the streaming platform.

I'm on episode 3 and the Dolby Vision cinematography is pretty incredible highlighting the different shades and tones of gray in the in the Smoke and volcanic ash from the seismic disturbance . The visuals of the landscape is worth the price of admission. Katla is some really gorgeous TV Cinema.




 

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Discussion Starter · #198 ·
Gaia (2021)
Opening night cinema premier
In Theaters Friday
June 18
Avant- Garde Cinema worth watching.
An injured forest ranger on a routine mission is saved by two off-the-grid survivalists. What is initially a welcome rescue grows more suspicious as the son and his renegade father reveal a cultish devotion to the forest.

Director: Jaco Bouwer
Writer: Tertius Kapp
Stars: Monique Rockman, Carel Nel, Alex van Dyk
This slow-burn horror-fantasy narrative is a trippy & unique approach to a bio- horror creature feature by creating a stunning assault on the ones senses through sight and sound . Gaia is most significant for its excellent practical make-up and select special effects. The use of body horror in the 1st act was very effective in building tension and provoking a visceral reaction that truly "got under my skin" .
Though thought provoking and perhaps not as "deep" as the filmmakers intended the message at least for me it was some what convoluted. This is countered though and made up for and worth the price of admission by the solid acting by the leads characters. Or possibly I'm just not sharp enough to wrap my head around the film writers concepts ?

The film has an extremely small cast of only four actors. In doing so creates a very interesting dynamic and characters study. Gaia centers on actress Monique Rockman(Gabi) who is deliciously brilliant. She is an extremely exotic and an alluring Beauty. I found her very captivating . Her performance really draws one into the nightmarish story, Rockman is beautifully and hauntingly suburb in her role.
The art-house sensibilities with the cinematography , aspect ratio shift from wide screen to 4:3, also known as 1.33:1 was used in a clever, and effective fashion that added a Mystique to the frames where this technique was employed. Gaia uses its atmosphere to great effect.

Director Bouwer's filmmaking lens centers on the abstract and avant-garde. Gaia is a weird horror film . The story thins out considerably upon reflection but the creepy aesthetic of cinematography and overview (nature on revenge and refusing to take it anymore) make Gaia into something more than routine horror. Gaia is a unique bio-horror film that should be viewed at least once for the horror film enthusiast. It is avant- garde cinema worth watching . I hope it gets a blu-ray release it worth adding to my collection. If its narrative ambitions aren't always equaled by its chilling visuals, Gaia remains an effective slice of ecological horror.



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Discussion Starter · #199 ·
San Andreas (2015)
All Hands on Deck . Don't overlook this film

Great Disaster Movie, Don't Miss This One!

In the aftermath of a massive earthquake in California, a rescue-chopper pilot makes a dangerous journey with his ex-wife across the state in order to rescue his daughter.

Director:Brad Peyton
Writers:Carlton Cuse (screenplay), Andre Fabrizio (story)
Stars:Dwayne Johnson, Carla Gugino, Alexandra Daddario

The Rock is a total bad ***


Carla Gugino and Dwayne Johnson in San Andreas (2015)


Alexandra Daddario


The visual effects are top-notch, the unrelenting obliteration of entire city blocks is overwhelmingly awesome, it’s handled with such panache (the overhead shots of the tremors’ wave-like effect is especially cool) that all you can do is sit back and gawk at the sheer scale of it. “San Andreas” doesn’t pretend to be anything other than what it is , VFX-driven disaster epic at its finest , and as long as you know that going into the film, you’ll probably have a good time. 8/10

 
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