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BradWesley123's Movie Journal- January 2015
Movie list created by BradWesley123
Sort by: Showing 31 items
Decade: Rating: List Type:
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Far from Heaven (2002)
DVD- 1hr. 47min.
Visually superb but the juxtaposition between 1950s melodrama and intimate character piece gets in the way too often. When it does hit though, as it does towards the end, it packs a punch. The cast is great, with Quaid and Haysbert doing some excellent supporting work and, as usual, Julianne Moore killing it in the lead.
North Country (2005)
DVD- 2hrs. 6min.
While it does get too heavy-handed on numerous occasions, North Country is a solidly made movie that tells an important story without totally smothering it to death. The cast is the main selling point, particularly Theron, McDormand, and Jenkins (who sells the hell out of the best scene in the movie).
Lone Survivor (2014)
American Hustle (2013)
The Duchess (2008)
Netflix- 1hr. 50min.
It's beautifully mounted and exceptionally well acted, but The Duchess is just too similar to other British period pieces to really stand on its own.
The Grifters (1991)
DVD- 1hr. 50min.
The cast is great, and the direction solid, but the movie just never came together for me. It just sort of seemed like a jumble of tones and storylines that never really come together.
The Phantom of the Opera (2004)
Netflix- 1hr. 34min.
There's nothing really new on display in Venus, just a showcase for Peter O'Toole to give one last great performance. In that regard, it's a big success.
The Good German (2006) (2007)
DVD- 1hr. 48min.
If movies were just visuals, this would be one of the best around. The Good German is so beautifully styled, especially its cinematography (by Soderbergh himself) and score (by Thomas Newman), that it may trick you into believing that it's good. Don't believe it. The story is unbelievably dull and just fumbles its potential for 108 minutes. The cast is good, but even they seem disinterested for much of the run time.
The Black Dahlia (2006)
DVD- 2hrs. 2min.
Entertaining, but a total mess. The movie is easy on the eyes Vilmos Zsigmond's cinematography is the best thing about this thing, but the story is just a hodgepodge of noirish elements and plot twists that kill any real stakes. It does offer a certain campy entertainment though; I was certainly never bored.
Mystic River (2003)
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
DVD- 1hr. 45min.
Burton knows how to make a visually striking picture, but his direction feels uninspired this time out, and Andrew Kevin Walker's script is utterly bland. Worth a look, but not much of a thought.
Million Dollar Baby (2005)
Gone Girl (2014)
Dick Tracy (1990)
VHS- 1hr. 45min.
The costumes and makeup are strong, and the story entertaining enough, but Dick Tracy is too clunky and over-the-top for its own good, and comes away feeling hollow.
Netflix- 1hr. 21min.
Ida is a fairly cold, detached film, but it's filled with subtle craft, strong acting, and beautiful black and white cinematography. More a movie you respect than wholeheartedly love.
Days of Thunder (1990)
Netflix- 1hr. 47min.
As much as I love movies about totally hetero, no homo, macho men seductively leering at each other for nearly two hours, Days of Thunder is just too damn dumb to really get behind in a traditional manner. As comedy though, it works much better.
Dallas Buyers Club (2013)
The Man Who Wasn't There (2001)
DVD- 1hr. 56min.
Filled to the brim with the Coen brothers typical style and with, The Man Who Wasn't There is funny, dramatic, thrilling oddball noir with excellent work form lead Billy Bob Thornton, and gorgeous photography from Roger Deakins.
In America (2003)
DVD- 1hr. 45min.
While not the most original immigrant tale put to celluloid, In America is likely the warmest and most humane one. This isn't a manufactured tear-jerker though Sheridan's writing/direction and the acting are so natural that you buy ever minute of it.
VHS- 1hr. 53min.
A fun and reasonably smart Cold War thriller that only occasionally loses its way and drifts into cheese (though to the film's defense, it was the 1980s).
A Very Long Engagement (2004)
DVD- 2hrs. 13min.
Completely engrossing and utterly gorgeous, A Very Long Engagement is almost perfect until it's final 15 minutes, which feel like a real cop-out. Otherwise, there's not a department where this movie isn't stellar.
The Golden Compass (2007)
M-GO- 1hr. 53min.
The visual effects are solid, but The Golden Compass is a mostly soulless, derivative affair that strangles every solid element it has to death.
DVD- 1hr. 58min.
While it is a bit too aimless at times, Happy-Go-Lucky is ultimately a bittersweet look at a woman attempting to find and keep happiness in a sad and lonely world. Sally Hawkins is the main reason to see this, selling every little facet of her character gracefully and poignantly.
Boogie Nights (1997)
DVD- 2hrs. 35min.
P.T. Anderson's breakout is a superb ensemble drama with great writing, acting, and style. The only real problem I had with it was the length, which doesn't take away from my enjoyment all that much.
Number of Movies Watched: 31
Time Spent: 61hrs. 45min.
Best New View: Boogie Nights
Worst New View: Days of Thunder
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