Last movie you watched

  • I watched Terminator: Dark Fade and I found it okay. Since every Terminator movie (except Salvation) is basically just a variation of the same movie, I enjoyed it and …. well nothing much to be angry about. Also Mackenzie Davis has an awesome physique.

  • 21 Bridges, good cop movie, but too straightforward when it could have more drama and mystery. Chadwick Boseman has earned his badge.

    P.S.: In the meantime, I also watched Knives Out, Rian Johnson's first movie about the detective Benoit Blanc. I liked it, interesting way of framing the mystery, even though I guessed some of the ending before the middle (maybe I have read and watched too many detective stories). For a moment I wondered that I'd like a Professor Layton movie with a cast like this.

  • Banned

    Queen Rock Montreal

    As someone who barely knows Queen at all, I thought this ninety minutes was pretty nice. The band is so well synchronized, it sounds like an album.

    This Blu-ray has some disgusting grain management, though. The grain swarms around the performers, follows them, as they move.

  • @ezekiel Interesting background note for Queen Rock Montreal:

    The final version you saw was basically de-edited (the original footage was cut into a live video in 1981 that the band hated)
    Queen finally bought the rights to the film in 2006, and the original negative had to be scanned and restored so that they could re-cut it into what you saw. They sent it to be scanned and re-assembled back into as much of the original footage as they could, and they used the same NASA algorithm that was used to restore the footage of the Apollo moon landing. (which is why the film grain has that look to it, I'm guessing) Sadly some of the footage was either too far degraded or the footage had been destroyed in the original editing process so the Flash Gordon theme and The Hero which appear on the live CD do not appear on the video.

  • Last weekend I did a Friday-Saturday double header of The Godfather and The Godfather Part II. Back in the late 2000s I purchased the Coppola approved Blu Ray Remaster of these classics. At the time, I thought it looked phenomenal. A lot better than my old DVD version. They did a great job at recreating that crispy golden sheen that the original film had.

    But I'm speaking past tense here... I was not impressed by it in 2020. Some scenes in the original Godfather looked really really noisy to the point where it was distracting. I'm not sure if its the Blu Ray remaster doing this by making it HD or maybe its my new 4K Samsung versus my old TV but it just didn't look as great as I remember it being. I might check the Netflix version just to compare.

    For the most part it looked good and the story is what matters most in these movies, but still. It really wasn't as jaw dropping as I remembered.

  • Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

    A big complaint I've heard about it is that it has too much going on. It certainly has a lot of different locations and situations, but I never felt overwhelmed. Most of it was quite well explained in simple language, and the action was easy to follow. Most shots only focus on one or two things, and the colour palette makes things easy to identify. Compare it to Revenge of the Sith, which is just swimming in unnecessary detail and movement, and is oversaturated to boot.

    The story doesn't have a lot of heart, and there's a fair amount of flimsy dialogue (especially the emperor's). There's also a few cheap callbacks, but they're not as in-your-face as the ones in The Force Awakens.

    The actors do a reasonable job, though, and the visual design (sets in particular) is stunning. J.J. Abrams is a hollow director, but an eye catching one.

    What I feel anchors it is the soundtrack, and not merely the nostalgia of the classic themes. Every scene is heightened by the music.

    If I had to ask for one improvement, it would be a gripping spaceship battle. I saw ships flying around, but I rarely felt like they were doing anything awesome or important. Rogue One was way better in this department.

    It's between this and The Phantom Menace for most rewatchable non-original trilogy Star Wars film.* RoS is less cringey, but TPM has more memorable content.

    3 1/2 out of 5.

    *I haven't seen Solo, but the trailer footage I've seen didn't fill me with promise.

  • Banned

    Stop Making Sense (1984, Talking Heads)

    I understood only some of the lyrics.


    Best concert film I've seen and one of the few classics kept in good condition. Excellent separation of instruments and singers, with the surrounds mostly used for the audience. Satisfying low frequencies. Seems few changes had to be made for the Blu-ray, as (I saw in the credits) it was originally presented in Dolby Stereo, which is six channel surround. I already liked their music, but had no idea they were this entertaining live. As Leonard Maltin said in his review (which I didn't read but whose quote I found on Wikipedia), "brilliantly conceived, shot, edited and performed."

  • Banned

    Over the weekend, I watched Prince: Sign o' The Times twice.

    This movie is awesome. I quite liked Purple Rain, but it didn't funk and rock or have as much soul (I mean the genre) in its sound as this, as it was a story with musical numbers and not an eighty minute concert film. This has so much energy and the theatrics and seedy scenery set the tone so well.

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    I dug the way his performers acted out the music being played. Separately recorded clips interspersed between the songs and wardrobe changes kept the pace smooth.

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    I loved when Prince traded places with Sheila E., went up to do the drums while she got down on the stage and rapped in "It's Gonna Be a Beautiful Night," because I forgot Prince drummed or don't remember if I've ever even seen him drum. It was only briefly, though, because he's no serious drummer. "Not bad," Prince comments earlier, as she's rocking up there. "For a girl." I laughed out loud when Prince, out of nowhere, slid under this dancer with his guitar and ripped off her skirt.

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    The film was originally presented in six-track Dolby Stereo, but I think I honestly prefer the PCM stereo track with headphones over the DTS 5.1 track with speakers/sub. It had better clarity. Average video bitrate is 30 mbps, and it's a pretty good scan. There's one song in the middle with separately recorded footage that looks VHS quality, but I'm pretty happy with it overall, considering how poorly most older concert films have been treated.

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    Sign o' the Times is my favorite Prince album and of all the concert films I've seen Prince is also my favorite musician. This movie still exceeded my expectations.

  • Last movie i watched was the contagion. Its about this outbreak virus that got out of hand and killed countless people, which is similar to what the world is going through now. The symptoms in the movie were a lot worse than the coronavirus, but the concept of vaccine's and govt's responses are similar

  • @Falco444 I watched it too, I was entertained. @DMCMaster I hope this is the start of the trend to release the movies immediately on streaming, but I'm never paying 20 to watch a new movie.

    I spent the last three days bingewatching the two seasons of Kingdom, a series about a zombie outbreak in feudal Korea in the midst of a throne succession dispute. It looks good in both effects and characterization, as well as worldbuilding. The plot is also interesting, it kept me on the edge of my seat. Well, not actually, because I was exercising while watching some of the episodes.

  • @irongrey

    Honestly $20 to rent a new movie that's still in theaters doesn't seem too bad, especially for things like Trolls. I also hope this will clear out some rooms or get extra time slots for limited screening stuff like flashback cinema or the various Fathom Events stuff.
    Maybe I'll actually be able to catch stuff without having to leave work early.

  • @DMCMaster why would someone pay more than a cinema ticket for a release that doesn't demand the extra costs that come with the cinema exhibition?

  • @irongrey I guess it depends on the city, but a non-matinee in NYC is routinely above $20, and premium formats top $30.

  • @naltmank
    Average ticket prices in my area are around $13-$17 depending on time and theater. So two people going is easily about $30, throw in just a small drink your looking at around $45-$50.

    So $20 to rent a new movie while it's still in theaters, yeah that's cheaper, even adding in food cost.

  • Where I live we're charged 5€/6€ per ticket. I barely go to the cinema now, because I'm too cyberpunk to spend money on films, if you catch my drift. The last three movies I watched were Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame, for the total amount of 15€. Plus about 1€ because I once bought M&Ms.

  • Banned

    I wonder if this pandemic (the lack of retail purchases, joblessness and stalled shipments) will accelerate the death of physical media, namely films. I rarely stream and would hate to be solely at the mercy of those services and my internet. I stick with physical media (and disc rentals) mainly because of how much better the quality is and being able to watch almost anything I want. There is no way I would be watching seven to nine movies a week if I limited myself to any one service or even three. My enthusiasm would sizzle out so fast. I would spend half the time just trying to find stuff to watch on Netflix and Disney Plus and such. This lockdown is gonna be so bad for smaller labels.

  • physical media will probably never die for the same reason it hasn't already died. there's a lot of places where internet just isn't good enough for where data caps are so limiting that streaming just isn't viable. That and a lot of people just prefer the feeling of physically owning something.

  • I wouldn't be so sure. Life changes in unexpected manners and it doesn't bode well for us to grasp too much to old concepts.