Author Topic: Ask The Gold Trumpet  (Read 35366 times)

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Gold Trumpet

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« Reply #90 on: October 09, 2003, 05:41:19 PM »
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1.0 - Missed.

2.0 - Truly a cookie cut out story if there ever was one. Not unique in 1975 and still as ever present. Still, the general handling and Jack Nicholson make it work. Nicholson is as good as they could have got to play the part and his personality of juvenile destructiveness in this world is not only exciting, but by far charming. Of course the general idea is that constricting rules and borders are bad for everyone. No shit. You care about Nicholson and resent Nurse Ratched. As events build, you get involved and care more and the entire infirmary where these bozos hang out become your own walls. The major scene that should have been done without is the fishing scene. It takes away from being in this environment and ultimately trapped in it. Also, many characters are reduced to stereotypes of buffoons and act too goofy for their own good. The acting in the infirmy is odd, but yet quiet and appealing in a way and they grow on us. Everyone I went to high school with has seen this movie because they were forced to at High School. Some enjoyed it and some didn't but it feels like the perfect place in which to show the film and appreciate it.

3.0 - Symbolism is cliche and imo, usually very destructive. It reduces films down to jigsaw puzzles of what meant this or that. Personal interpretation is hardly used but recognition of a symbol and its place of meaning in our society. Symbolism is everywhere but with film, given the limitations of canvas, is even more destructive. For the potential of a novel, film in pure mass can only speak in sentences of one vowel. Symbolism in tradition of what is used in literature furthers reduces the film. In Wonder Boys, this symbolism is everywhere. Its a canvas where quick thinking and reasonable logic of the world can have you pin pointing everything down to a T. Hardly anything is subjective, its all a tightly wound story that pushes from point to point in what it wants to get across. The movie though, is very good still. It has not only a good and entertaining story, but that story is still interesting in the third act. It doesn't slack. The performances are also very fine and much of the writing punctual and effective. I wouldn't elevate it to the status of greatness that some people are giving it though.

4.0 - Before, I didn't like this film that much. My initial opinion was that it was just a good story only waiting for the awaited violence in style of Sam Peckinpah. With the Criterion release and much discussion on the commentary giving much light to the film, I am showing much more respect and humility to being wrong. Its not just the mere case of Hoffman, quiet and shy, standing up to bullies and tormentors of his family, but of him and his wife and tormentors who rape her. Two rapes of the wife are shown; the first one is caused by the wife's own naivety of her sexuality and also her desire for one of the men in that she is bored of her husband and excited by them. She holds back but when intercourse is happening, she goes with it. The second rape is an actual rape. Another man forces it upon her and she disagrees the entire time and the first man, who performed consentially with her the first time, is forced for territorial reasons of who associates with, to hold her down as his buddy does rape her. In the entanglement of the wife losing feeling for the husband and growing feelings of sort, if just sexual desire, for one of the tormentors, casts a captivating story. Its not directly love, but a definite sign she is not secure in her marriage. All possibility of finding love with the man she cheated on her husband with is lost when he is forced to assit in an actual, brutal rape. Its never answered if it is love and all senses, could just be growing up on her part. The finale, with the expected violence, isn't much of a win for Hoffmann. He does stand up to the tormentors, but must deal with his wife and everything new she learning about herself. I speak at length because in what could be seen as a dragging movie, an interesting idea does show itself. The movie though is still filled with faults. The violence at the end doesn't really speak for the pysche of being raped as the wife was and instead follows through on the physical intimidation faced upon by Hoffman, the lesser of interesting ideas. The film keeps a good tone of realism and pace through out the movie, but bare hands the material so easily that instead of creating an atmosphere for characters, it creates an atmosphere for just a situation bound to happen. We know what will happen. Its just a matter of when. All in all, a truly mixed film.

5.0 - Its more interesting to note the actors (Brando, De Niro, Norton) and their places in this movie. Brando is not active (his film career at the moment) but sits on the sideline and is a reminder of past greatness (his own film career) to De Niro's character. De Niro is getting older and wiser but still active and cunning. The only thing of note to him in his personal life is that for once he has a black girlfriend in a movie (his real life preference). Norton is the up and commer looking to greatness. (his role requires him to play a mentally challenged, the cliche role of actors wanting to be great. Also, Norton is being advertised as the actor of his generation. *Cough* Sean Penn, anyone?*Cough*) The movie really isn't very good nor delves into anything at all. All actors look and dress as if they had just gotten onto set and the storyline is a just another in the long line of heist movies. An intricate and complicated heist is expected. This one really has nothing in the air to really distance itself from the others or give any special attention to.


~rougerum

NEON MERCURY

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« Reply #91 on: October 09, 2003, 07:08:51 PM »
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..good one for strAw. dogs

 here we go...

1.0  Far From Heaven
2.0  Black Hawk Down
3.0  Jacob's Ladder
4.0 The Salton Sea
5.0  Affliction

Gold Trumpet

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« Reply #92 on: October 11, 2003, 08:03:12 PM »
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1.0 - The role of the artist here. Roger Ebert best described this movie in saying it was the 1957 film never made. Todd Haynes, a gay man, drew inspiration from his hero Douglas Sirk and made a movie about the pressures of gays as if Sirk would have made it for the time period. Thing is though, that like Stanley Kauffmann's criticism of the book "In Cold Blood" that "it wasn't writing, it was researching", the same can be applied to here. Haynes is using a very important issue now close to him and making a Douglas Sirk film from it. He is losing all idependence from this action. Camera shots, style of acting and structure/influence for going about the script is meticiously researched in conjecture with Sirk's body of work when making melodramas. Haynes is researching much of the film. Specifics of storyline of course are his, but he has severe limits in what he wants to achieve. Limitations are on everything. I don't see the point in what Haynes is trying to do. He could speak for these issues in the 1950s without duplicating another man's work. Even better, he could speak for these issues now and with the ever present media trying to validify these relationships, he could dig deep to show what is still disconnecting them from much of the public now. Haynes tries to honor one of his hereos in the most flattering of ways and pays for it.

2.0 - There is something greatly rewarding, but also damaging in the pure realism of combat in this movie. Now, the movie has been understood as operating for the realism of combat mainly instead of some story. It doesn't really attain that realism. To attain it, the first 45 minutes leading up to the battle are unnecessary. It just tries to paint an atmosphere to get us to identify with these kids. Don't need it. The actual people going out there and fighting and us identifying all our shared identity to what war means to us already does that. Also, the face count is pretty high. So many soldiers in that first part that besides recognizable faces from other works, its really hard to identify with anyone. The the end, the moments of recollection after the war. Again, in the face of painting realism in war, not needed. Commentaries from random soldiers try to paint spefic thoughts and reactions into our heads of what went across their mind and how they are. And yet again, not neccessary. Our history with the identity of war and just watching the physical push of war in this film would have allowed us to understand the soldiers in our own way. The ending commentaries feel likes notes of drama at the end so the film can end on a good musical note attempting to create purposeful higher drama. The scenes of war, which take up most of the movie, are excellent though.

3.0 - Missed.

4.0 - Within moments of the film starting and of seeing Val Kilmer's face, we know he hides something in him that drives him. The movie doesn't really explore this at all. What specifically drives him to go through this weird world of going between drug lords and cops is unkown. Only at the end is it revealed. The most sad and devastating to this man is shown in a fashion to make it a good tool of revelation within a movie. We aren't given weight to feel his story pushed through this world. Most of the movie is actually just light weight because of it: weird wonderings through a drug crazed world mostly noted only for weirdness. To learn his condition and to show a story driven by it would be most satisfying.

5.0 - The scene is magnificent. At the end, (spoiler) after everything has come to a head between the father (Coburn) and son (Nolte), it ends with Nolte finally losing it and killing his father in the barn. He burns the barn with his father in it and sits inside of the kitchen to rest. He sits by the window and the burning barn outside is in plain view. Its a crystallized shot that conveys the very dominance, meanship and power that these two actors have in the movie. Everything about their dominance in face and truth in sadness expresses fully for both actors if really only one is in the shot. Coburn is conveyed through the flames. The rest of the movie is dissapointing to the strength of these two actors. Pain lives in this town between these two men, but the screenplay feels casual in moments not necessary and even have hints of another genre in it (crime mystery). There is even narration by William Dafoe's character that makes the story feel more formal. Its powerful because of the actors and who they represent and should have had a better vision, a more narrowing vision on them controlled by a director willing to bring a better atmosphere. For too much of the time, Schrader is just shooting the screenplay. This movie needed a specific talent in which to give the movie its unique flavor so the actors could have been better rewarded.

~rougerum

NEON MERCURY

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« Reply #93 on: October 13, 2003, 10:22:13 PM »
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..

1.0  amores perros
2.0  grand canyon
3.0  (for halloween)..the exorcist4.0  alice in wonderland
5.0  boyz in the hood

*bonus
your thoughts on Aronofsky...

enjoyed your previous thoughts on 1.0 and 5.0

GodDamnImDaMan

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« Reply #94 on: October 14, 2003, 12:06:34 AM »
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Dear Mr Trumpet...

    I dink it's phunny how you call yer cock a gold trumpet, me on the other hand call mine "Big Red"
Aclockworkjj:  I have like broncitious or something
Aclockworkjj:  sucks, when i cough, if feels like i am dying
Aclockworkjj:  i can barely smoke

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modage

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« Reply #95 on: October 14, 2003, 06:58:10 PM »
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when did you stop going \to movies to enjoy them, and start going to critique them?
Christopher Nolan's directive was clear to everyone in the cast and crew: Use CGI only as a last resort.

Gold Trumpet

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« Reply #96 on: October 14, 2003, 07:31:38 PM »
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Modern age:
I still go to movies to enjoy them, its just I critique as well. Case in point, I went with a friend to see Kill Bill and through out the movie, I was nudging him and saying things like, "That's fucking awesome" and laughing out loud all the time and just smiling though out. After getting out of the movie, he asked what I thought and I just went into a 20 minute explanation why the first part needed to be dumped completely and every other critique that ran through my mind. He knew how I was, but still kinda amazed: "What the fuck? You looked like you enjoyed that movie more than anyone else in the theatre and you criticized like half of it." I was kinda like, "Well, yea, I always do that." Its just I do both.

But I got serious with movies around summer time of '99 and slowly molded into what I am now and am continuing to change even. Its just, I guess, am not really impressed with movies today.

~rougerum

godardian

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« Reply #97 on: October 14, 2003, 08:21:19 PM »
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Progressing with Todd Haynes: Have you ever seen Safe and/or Velvet Goldmine?? I think Safe is his best film (and one of the best American films ever made)... Velvet Goldmine is flawed but still very worthwhile, I think.
""Money doesn't come into it. It never has. I do what I do because it's all that I am." - Morrissey

"Lacan stressed more and more in his work the power and organizing principle of the symbolic, understood as the networks, social, cultural, and linguistic, into which a child is born. These precede the birth of a child, which is why Lacan can say that language is there from before the actual moment of birth. It is there in the social structures which are at play in the family and, of course, in the ideals, goals, and histories of the parents. This world of language can hardly be grasped by the newborn and yet it will act on the whole of the child's existence."

Stay informed on protecting your freedom of speech and civil rights.

Gold Trumpet

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« Reply #98 on: October 14, 2003, 08:50:48 PM »
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Godardian:
Sadly, no. None are at my video stores. Safe is on a decent number of times on tv on Starz: Cinema, though. I'll keep an eye out for that one and watch it the instant I see it. Velvet Goldmine is harder, but IFC shows it every now and then. I'll do the same for that.

To compensate, because I do feel a lil bad for not catching at least Safe since you recommended it before, I'll rent The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover. I know you talked about it highly before and its actually available to rent here. I'll post my review around the weekend. Way too busy to do so before. I'm still trying to formulate something for Neon and reply to my fights everywhere on the board.

~rougerum

godardian

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« Reply #99 on: October 14, 2003, 09:01:52 PM »
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Quote from: The Gold Trumpet
Godardian:
Sadly, no. None are at my video stores. Safe is on a decent number of times on tv on Starz: Cinema, though. I'll keep an eye out for that one and watch it the instant I see it. Velvet Goldmine is harder, but IFC shows it every now and then. I'll do the same for that.

To compensate, because I do feel a lil bad for not catching at least Safe since you recommended it before, I'll rent The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover. I know you talked about it highly before and its actually available to rent here. I'll post my review around the weekend. Way too busy to do so before. I'm still trying to formulate something for Neon and reply to my fights everywhere on the board.

~rougerum


I know, they really keep you scrambling around here!  :)

It will be interesting to hear what you make of Cook, Thief, etc.

I ordered two Stanley Kauffmann books today.
""Money doesn't come into it. It never has. I do what I do because it's all that I am." - Morrissey

"Lacan stressed more and more in his work the power and organizing principle of the symbolic, understood as the networks, social, cultural, and linguistic, into which a child is born. These precede the birth of a child, which is why Lacan can say that language is there from before the actual moment of birth. It is there in the social structures which are at play in the family and, of course, in the ideals, goals, and histories of the parents. This world of language can hardly be grasped by the newborn and yet it will act on the whole of the child's existence."

Stay informed on protecting your freedom of speech and civil rights.

Gold Trumpet

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« Reply #100 on: October 14, 2003, 09:15:56 PM »
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Quote from: godardian
I ordered two Stanley Kauffmann books today.


Excellent! Which two?

~rougerum

godardian

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« Reply #101 on: October 14, 2003, 09:20:56 PM »
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Quote from: The Gold Trumpet
Quote from: godardian
I ordered two Stanley Kauffmann books today.


Excellent! Which two?

~rougerum


an old one and a new one: Living Images and Regarding Film.
""Money doesn't come into it. It never has. I do what I do because it's all that I am." - Morrissey

"Lacan stressed more and more in his work the power and organizing principle of the symbolic, understood as the networks, social, cultural, and linguistic, into which a child is born. These precede the birth of a child, which is why Lacan can say that language is there from before the actual moment of birth. It is there in the social structures which are at play in the family and, of course, in the ideals, goals, and histories of the parents. This world of language can hardly be grasped by the newborn and yet it will act on the whole of the child's existence."

Stay informed on protecting your freedom of speech and civil rights.

Gold Trumpet

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« Reply #102 on: October 14, 2003, 09:28:15 PM »
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Good choices. I have Regarding Film, obviously. Living Images, I think, is for movies from the early 1970s. I really want that. Besides Regarding Film, I have the books that cover the entire decade of the 1960s.

~rougerum

dufresne

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« Reply #103 on: October 14, 2003, 10:45:20 PM »
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i'm interested...

1 - Bringing Out the Dead
2 - The Shawshank Redemption
3 - Falling Down
4 - The Mack
There are shadows in life, baby.

NEON MERCURY

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« Reply #104 on: October 14, 2003, 10:48:05 PM »
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GT you 've become quite popular....

don't let it go to your head tho.. :wink:

 

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