The Paizo Community International Film Festival.


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Watched about half of The Monkey King 2 and, despite having a different Monkey King actor*, this one seems to be a more accurate depiction of the source novel than either the first one, or the movie named after the source novel, that I will be re-watching soon.

I say this with the confidence of a gwailo almost completely ignorant of Chinese literature, but conversant with Wikipedia.

Also, there is apparently a sequel to the movie named after the source novel.

Journey to the West 2: The Demons Strike Back

He played the villain in the first movie, which is a little weird.

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A short film for the Anklebiter clan: The Goblin Queen

I saw The skin I live in yesterday. Almodovar is a good storyteller as always, but daaamn... That plot.

Out of the loop, I'm afraid. Haven't seen an Almodovar flick since Talk to Her.

For which, IIRC, "but daamn...That plot" was also an appropriate comment.


In addition to finishing off The Monkey King 2, and The Goblin Queen


Dog Day Afternoon

The Maltese Falcon

and, um,

Sausage Party

Rewatches from earlier in the thread:

Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons, The General and It Happened One Night


The Battleship Potemkin

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Nostalgic bump for the memory of Comrade Dwarf and also because I don't think this post made an impression on me at the time; I think it woas two Thanksgivings later that I saw it.

The 8th Dwarf wrote:

Stephen Chow (Kung Fu Hustle and Shaolin Soccer) is making Journey to the West.

As long as is it as good as the Japanese TV show Monkey from the 1970's then I will be happy.

In the worlds before Monkey, primal chaos reigned. Heaven sought order. But the phoenix can fly only when its feathers are grown. The four worlds formed again and yet again, as endless aeons wheeled and passed. Time and the pure essences of Heaven and the moisture of Earth, the powers of the sun and the moon all worked upon a certain rock, old as creation. And it became magically fertile. The first egg was named "Thought". Tathagata Buddha, the Father Buddha, said, "With our thoughts, we make the world." Elemental forces caused the egg to hatch. From it then came a stone monkey. The nature of monkey was irrepressible!

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I watched Independence Day: Revengeance (Repugnance? Rehashence? Resomethingence?) last week. It was't nearly as bad as I was anticipating, but not nearly as good as I had hoped. It was plagued by too many 'main' characters: Goldblum, Hemsworth, Not-Will-Smith, Ye Olde President, Ye Olde President's Daughter, Goldblum's Daddy, and Dr Nopantso all had main story beats (vs the like 6 TOTAL plot beats from ID4). Then another few secondary plots throwed in as well (Fisherman's boat, accountant + warlord = BFFs!, using pilots dad dying to move into romantic position, etc.). Too many plots trying to split the screen time, with few of the plots ever overlapping, so these character scenes are generally all played out solo.

5/10, probably wouldn't rewatch.


We watched Sing as well. I'm glad I rented it on DirecTV rather than buying the disc. Boring movie.

3/10, won't rewatch.

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Judd Hirsch is doing well for like 119.

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Nothing but Hollywood this week, alas:

El Dorado (Script by Leigh Brackett of Skaith fame, btw)

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (Script by William Goldman of The Princess Bride fame)

Chinatown (Script by Robert Towne who didn't write any fantasy or sci-fi classics, but is a New Hollywood legend, nonetheless.)

The Gold Rush (Georgia Hale, meow.)

À bout de souffle (Jean Seberg leaves me breathless, especially when she isn't wearing a brassiere.)

And, ever since I watched Lillian Gish face offed with Robert Mitchum in The Night of the Hunter, I knew I was going to break down and re-watch Birth of a Nation. Kinda did, kinda didn't, put it on youtube and would wander in and out of the room.

Racist pos movie, but Gish sure was a dish.

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In which, among other things, burly proletarian Sang-hwa, jacked from all those years fighting riot cops on KCTU picket lines (okay, I made that part up), teaches a hedge fund manager about life, love, fatherhood, and fighting zombies.

Aguirre, der Zorn Gottes

In which Klaus Kinski foments mutiny against the Spanish crown, mistreats indigenous South Americans and molests spider monkeys.

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Free old Britflicks on Youtube!

Oh! Mr. Porter

(This is frickin' hilarious; I need to watch more Will Hay [not to be confused Will Hays, the infamous Hollywood censor] movies; happily there seems to be quite a few free ones on the youtube, although, common consensus seems to be that O!MP is the best of them. He reminds me of a British W.C. Fields, but, you know, not as drunk.)


(Class conflict and comedy, although I am forever upset that the requirements of popular cinema meant that Shaw had to rewrite the ending so that Eliza and Henry end up together; I always thought she should have instead ended up with Colonel Pickering.)

And now I think I will watch

Kind Hearts and Coronets

which is another class-war comedy, and, as a bonus, features Alec Guinness getting murdered, not once, not twice, but eight times!

The Legend of Drunken Master

Recommended by Comrade Gersen, and went very well with my readings in early 20th-century Chinese revolutionary history.

Space Pirate Captain Harlock

It had its moments.

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The Adventures of Picasso (1978), starring Gösta Ekman and Hans Alfredsson, narrated by Bernard Cribbins (as Gertrude Stein).

Liberty's Edge

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The Assassin, a Chinese / Taiwanese film set in China during the Tang Dynasty.

A very beautiful film, but not quite what I was expecting (lots of assassinations and wuxia fight scenes) ... there are a few fights, but lots of lingering landscape shots, dialogue, lingering shots of characters standing about looking meaningfully at each other without dialogue, etc.

Oh, and I also watched one of The 8th Dwarf's favourite films on the weekend, Big Trouble in Little China. (RIP my friend).

Three Flicks I Found on Netflix:


For class war and Danny DeVito.

In Like Flint

I looked up the toothsome villainess and discovered that she was married to Dabney Coleman for twenty years. I don't know what I found that fascinating.


No, not with Brandon Fraser.

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Highlights from the first two days of the 2017 Sydney Film Festival day subscriber program... despite expectations this has been two amazing days!

Spoor. dir. Agnieszka Holland (Poland + others) Silver Bear at Berlin. A crazy old woman reacts when her dogs disappear. Great cinematography. 8.5 out of ten.

The Nile Hilton Incident. Blacker than black film noir set in Cairo just before the Arab spring. 8/10.

School Life . Documentary. Two teachers approach the end of their careers at a Irish boarding school. Affirming. 9/10

The Untamed. Mexico. An erotic scifi, and successor to Zulawski's Possession (1981). Unlikely to every get a US cinema release due to, but not limited to, the graphic human/alien sex. 7.5/10.

Window Horses. Animated. A Canadian of Chinese/Iranian decent gets invited to a poetry festival in Shiraz. Uplifting in just about every way. 9/10

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Highlights from the past two days at the 2017 Free Movies on the Internet New Hampshire Film Festival:

Great Expectations

With more Alec Guinness and Valerie Hobson.

Desk Set

Fifties class war Spencer-Tracy rom com about automation and unemployment (I learned from wikipedia that the toothsome blonde research secretary was depicted by an heiress to the Post cereal fortune)

Doodlebug Anklebiter wrote:

Fifties class war Spencer-Tracy rom com

That should read, Tracy-Hepburn rom com, of course.

Then I switched Hepburns (How to Steal a Million) and rued the decisions in my life that led to me not being a gentleman art criminal.

Bookmarking this here to explore later:

Film Struck

Looks more my speed then the Netflix account that Mr. Comrade got.

Paizo Employee Managing Editor

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Between SIFF and Pridefest, we saw the following:

Check It: Documentary about what is possibly the first ever LGBTQ gang, formed by kids in the DC projects for self defense. I have not felt my privilege so hard in years.

Forever Pure: Documentary about a Jerusalem soccer team backed by far right nationalistic fans; the team's Russian war criminal owner hires two Muslim Chechen players. Spoiler: It does not go well, though no one ultimately dies.

I Dream in Another Language: My favorite of the bunch, a magical realism-style film about a linguist trying to reconcile the last two speakers of a dying language, who haven't spoken in decades. Beautiful and heartbreaking and funny story.

Mr. Long: The unexpected marriage of Tampopo and a hardcore gangster film, it had both a shockingly high body count for a cooking film and a surprising about of heartwarming interactions with wacky and intrusive but sincere neighbors for a gangster film.

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If anyone wants to see where I delivered the mail and newspaper until three years ago, watch the (subtitled in English) trailer for A Man Called Ove. (Which also features our local train station.)

The Taking of Tiger Mountain

Chinese blockbuster adaptation of famous Maoist Peking opera that Brian Eno named his second album after.

And a double shot of Lubitsch:

To Be Or Not To Be


which a comrade brought to my attention is free on Youtube.

That Uncertain Feeling

Pat and Mike

Time Bandits

Iron Man

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Harlan County U.S.A. (1976 documentary).

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I've still got my VHS cassette copy of that one.

All Quiet on the Western Front

Which is always better than I remember it.

2001: A Space Odyssey

Both Mr. Comrade and La Principessa expressed feelings of disgust and anger that I was rewatching it (La Principessa via phone, Mr. Comrade by sitting in for the "Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite" sequence and mocking it, repeatedly) but I very much enjoyed it again.

Iron Man 2

Which was better than Iron Man, I thought, but that's not saying much. I also wonder if I only like it more because of my involuntary subprimal response to Scarlett Johannson.

The visiting of a child partially explains the choices of movies in this report:

Nothing Sacred (3 1/2 stars)

The Last Starfighter (5 stars! best movie ever and not at all based on nostalgia!)

The Incredible Hulk (2 1/2 star)

Moana (5 stars! I knew when Mr. Comrade and I went to the movies a year or so back we should have seen this instead of the Harry Potter spin off movie!)

A double shot of Kurosawa, one that I had seen before, one that I hadn't:

Kagemusha (Streaming on Netflix at the moment)

Followed by a double shot of Billy Wilder:

Double Indemnity
Some Like It Hot

and then a travelogue/biopic on youtube about Zoroaster:

On Wings of Fire

Mr. Comrade found a five-hour Indian semi-fantasy epic set in a fictional kingdom on Netflix last night. We watched the first part and will probably watch the second part later this week.

Baahubali - The Beginning

It was an interesting watch, some of the musical numbers were ridiculous, but the action parts were neat-o. The "courtship" was a little creepy (dude sneaks up on dudette and tattoos her, twice, without her knowing; later, when he's all like "Baby, I love you, I've been stalking you for the last half hour of the film!" she attacks him with her sword and he undresses her and paints her with makeup during the fight transforming her into a "real" woman) and the bad guy army in the flashback looked uncomfortably like South Asians in blackface. I started doing some reading on the internet (I had never heard of the film before I watched it) and it apparently was a big, much criticized, blockbuster in India and the sequel (also streaming on Netflix) dials back the racism and sexism...only to add in dollops of casteism.

Anyway, I don't know if I'd call it a good movie, but it sure was interesting to see how India made a fantasy epic.

(I also have to admit that I kept referring to the titular character as "Baba Booey" while Mr. Comrade and I watched it.)

In chronological order:




Harley Davidson and the Marlboro Man


The Awful Truth

La Grande Illusion



Liberty's Edge

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Recently watched ‘The Matrimony’ a Chinese ghost story movie starring Fan Bingbing. It is a period piece set in / near Shanghai in the 30s. The story is interesting if a little predictable and there are some great shots, locations and costumes. I found the ending to be fairly weak.

Inspired by a certain song by The Clash, I've been watching Montgomery Clift flicks:

Red River

A Place in the Sun

From Here to Eternity


Seven Samurai

and after an online argument with a former Trotskyist whose biography was the last project Harvey Pekar was working on before he died,

American Splendor

A lucky find on Netflix, I'd never seen Fritz Lang's Destiny before and it was bad ass!

Der müde Tod

(Almost makes up for Netflix taking down 30 Rock this month; I had only ever watched up to Season 5 before and was only three episodes into Season 7 when the 30th came around :( )


The Lady Vanishes

Bad Day at Black Rock

Repo Man


The House Bunny


The 39 Steps

Secret Agent


It was while googling stuff about Hitchcock, W. Somerset Maugham and Joseph Conrad that I ran across the accusations Tippi Hedren made about the former that were apparently published last year in her memoirs and I hadn't seen until now. I know, I know, Hitch's films already gave him quite the rep as a misogynist (remembers Frenzy and shudders) but, in the light of the accusations and everything else that is going on in Hollywood at the moment, I found Secret Agent, with Peter Lorre as a sociopathic contract killer for the Britishiznoid government with a problem keeping his hands to himself when it comes to women, quite disturbing.

Later, I re-watched The 39 Steps (I got one of those ubiquitous early Hitchcock DVD collections out of the library) because I couldn't remember any grossness there, and found the scene where Robert Donat forces his attentions on Madeleine Caroll in a train car, in order to escape from the coppers, pretty unsettling.

Winchester '73

Which was comparatively a breeze, even with Rock Hudson in redface.


The Frighteners

Design for Living

Pre-Code threesome flick by Lubitsch that's pretty hawt for a film my grandparents could have seen at the theater.

Jamaica Inn

(Early Hitchcock period piece with "King of the Pirates" Robert Newton as a landlubber brigand who preys on shipwrecked sailors...or does he? Also, Charles Laughton as a criminally insane eccentric British nobleman is amazing, imho.)

((The above two are currently free on Youtube until the copyright police are notified.))

The Best Years of Our Lives

(Currently watching: I'm an hour in and, although I've already seen it before, I've cried four times.)

Captain America: The First Avenger

Yeah, well, I watch s*#@ movies, too. (I liked parts of it.)

Aftershock: Beyond the Civil War

Okay, this should probably be in the Television threads, but I recently watched this 2006 History Channel program about Reconstruction and was thoroughly entertained. (The first half's pretty nasty, but around the time it gets to Tennessee governor Parson G. Brownlow and Arkansas's D.P. Upham, it's pretty inspiring.)


Det sjunde inseglet

The Guns of Navarone

Amores Perros

Inglourious Basterds

The Lodger

The Wizard of Oz


The Avengers

I Am Not Your Negro


The Big Sleep


Paths of Glory



A 2005 Hindi cartoon that was on Netflix that purports to tell 3/7ths of The Ramayana; here dubbed into English on youtube.

It's a Wonderful Life

Whisky Galore! (no trailer for the original on the internet that I could find, alas)

An American In Paris

Der Junge Karl Marx (trailer's in German, French and English, but pirated version I watched was all Deutsch)

and a PBS documentary about slave revolts in Saint-Domingue:

Egalite for All: Toussaint Louverture and the Haitian Revolution

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