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urbwar

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Going to see Wakanda Forever at 3pm my time in 3D with my friend. Been looking forward to this one. Going to watch some episodes of NCIS: Hawaii in the interim. I spent all of yesterday not watching anything (I just read ebooks or played a couple of games on Facebook), which was strange since I usually watch something every day.
 

Voros

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Watched Long Time Running, about the Hip's last cross-Canada tour with their lead singer and lyric writer Gord Downie knowing he was dying of cancer.



I'm a Hip fan and saw them live at their peak in the mid-90s during their Another Roadside Attraction Tour (and much later Downie 'solo' with Julie Doiron and the Wooden Stars) but this doc was underwhelming and made all the typical, generic music documentary mistakes: cutting away from the band performing to some talking head; people speaking overtop of performances; incomplete performances; excessive shots of the audience and predictable selection of only a handful of songs.

Why do these directors not trust that the band's music itself is enough to keep the audience's attention?

You're better off watching some lo-fi live footage of the band on YT.
 
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Godfather Punk

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Enola Holmes 2 was not bad. When I saw the first EH, I liked the actress playing her, but now all I could see was Eleven.
The big reveal was a bit obvious in hindsight, but if the great Sherlock only found out by the end of the film, why should I feel bad :smile:
Of course a bit of communication instead of 'going in on my own' also would have shortened the movie by at least an hour.

Black Adam, on the other hand, was shite. If you ever want to see the formula of stereotypical cliché superhero tropes and CGI set pieces, with 85% action, 10% exposition and the rest devoted to... character development(?) and an unoriginal story, played to the hilt, this has to be it.

Tonight I'm going to see '3000 years of longing' in a local theatre, and then it's Stranger Things season 4 to binge over the weekend.
 

rumble

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Netflix

Lost Bullet 2 is just as much fun as the first. Alban Lenoir is the French equivalent of The Transporter x John Wick. Unlike the first movie, all the bullets are accounted for. But of course they couldn't come up with a better name. Door is wide open for a part three.

Recommended if you like action flicks.
 

thebigh

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I've watched the first six or seven episodes on Mr. Mercedes on Netflix. It's based on a series of crime novels by Stephen King, in which a fat, bearded, frequently drunk retired cop played by Brendan Gleeson tries to track down a killer who drove over a crowd of people in a stolen car. I think I read the book at some point but, unlike King adaptations generally, I've found the series to be better and more memorable. It's a little bit slow going but solid and enjoyable.
 

Godfather Punk

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Tonight I'm going to see '3000 years of longing' in a local theatre
3kYoL was a beautifully shot romantic story, with some guest appearances from Fury Road actresses. Not very surprising if you know the concept, but I liked the execution and the melancholic score by Junky-XL.

While browsing thru the Neflix catalog I decided to push asside my ST prejudices, and started watching Encounter at Farpoint.
I just reached the end of Part 1 and this is some really dire wooden acting. I will probably skip TNG and switch to Deep Space 9, but will still check out the next episodes first.
 

thebigh

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I just reached the end of Part 1 and this is some really dire wooden acting. I will probably skip TNG and switch to Deep Space 9, but will still check out the next episodes first.
Seasons 1 and 2 of TNG are pretty rubbish. The show really hits its stride in the third season though.

For DS9, I thought the first season was a bit hit and miss. But I think the later seasons are the best of Trek.
 

Godfather Punk

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Seasons 1 and 2 of TNG are pretty rubbish. The show really hits its stride in the third season though.
If I skip S1 & S2, are there any episodes that are still noteworthy? For character or setting stuff that will become important later?
 

chuckdee

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Black Adam, on the other hand, was shite. If you ever want to see the formula of stereotypical cliché superhero tropes and CGI set pieces, with 85% action, 10% exposition and the rest devoted to... character development(?) and an unoriginal story, played to the hilt, this has to be it.

Tonight I'm going to see '3000 years of longing' in a local theatre, and then it's Stranger Things season 4 to binge over the weekend.
I actually liked Black Adam quite a bit. I loved the focus on the JSA being the menace to a city that they were never called to protect.

Really liked 3000 years of longing also.

Also, I never realized how much Top Gun: Maverick steals from Star Wars:
 

urbwar

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Today's Chinese fantasy movie was Sword of Shennog, aka Shen Nog Ruler. Strange movie about a guy who goes to study cultivation at a monastery for immortals so he can protect his people. There's also some demons, an evil god and some artifacts. Might have liked it better if the subtitles had been better.
 

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Finished Vampires and enjoyed it, an interesting take on vampires.

Watched Godless, a western series, following a recommendation, and really enjoyed it.

Finished watching Season 2 of Barbarians, a series about the Germanic Barbarians and their struggles with Rome. It was as enjoyable as Season 1 and leads into a Season 3, all being well.

Currently watching Season 2 of Warrior Nun, which started off a bit weak but has grown on me. I can see a Father Ted vibe, with the Nuns often going about doing things still dressed as Nuns, as the Priests in Father Ted did, for example playing football dressed as Priests.
 

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This is a clip found on youtube, but I'd love to find this series dubbed or at least subtitled into English. It from a Chinese TV drama (2015-16 Peoples Republic of China 66-episode TV drama series 「东方战场」 "Dongfang Zhanchang"; English title "Eastern Battlefields")


I love the interwar period and China at this time is very interesting. Sure there is some reusing of clips but the attention to detail of the aircraft is astounding, far better than the typical Hollywood efforts (I'm looking at you Midway with your F4F Wildcat turning into an F9F Panther jet crashing on the deck). They got the Japanese Type 92 (Lewis gun clone) machine guns on the Type 96 bombers to the small details of the Curtis Hawk IIIs guns mounted between the engine cylinders not located on the cowl like WW1 biplanes.

We have people from all over the world on this forum, anyone familiar with this to know if the rest of the series holds up to this clip, and where I might be able to find it translated for an English speaking audience? Google just leads me to youtube clips.


Seasons 1 and 2 of TNG are pretty rubbish. The show really hits its stride in the third season though.

For DS9, I thought the first season was a bit hit and miss. But I think the later seasons are the best of Trek.

Yeah the early period of TNG seemed to just rehash a lot of TOS themes and even episodes. Occasionally these were kind of cool as a follow up episode, but generally it just felt like lazy writing. About the period where Riker got a beard, Troi a voice vs just being eye candy, and Wesley shown the door the series finally seemed to come into its own.
 
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Giganotosaurus

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I love the interwar period and China at this time is very interesting. Sure there is some reusing of clips but the attention to detail of the aircraft is astounding, far better than the typical Hollywood efforts (I'm looking at you Midway with your F4F Wildcat turning into an F9F Panther jet crashing on the deck). They got the Japanese Type 92 (Lewis gun clone) machine guns on the Type 96 bombers to the small details of the Curtis Hawk IIIs guns mounted between the engine cylinders not located on the cowl like WW1 biplanes.
The whole Interwar/Second Sino-Japanese war is a severally under used setting in media outside of China, and to my understanding most movies set during that period are just glossy propaganda flicks meant to appease the CCP and whitewash their involvement in the war. Unfortunate considering that the whole theater was of comparable importance to the Eastern Front.
Come to think of it the aren't many movies set on the Eastern front either. Enemy at the Gates and Come and See are the only ones that comes to mind.
 

3rik

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Watched Godless, a western series, following a recommendation, and really enjoyed it.
Yeah, I enjoyed that one quite a bit as well. Mentioned watching it earlier on in the thread.
 

Toadmaster

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The whole Interwar/Second Sino-Japanese war is a severally under used setting in media outside of China, and to my understanding most movies set during that period are just glossy propaganda flicks meant to appease the CCP and whitewash their involvement in the war. Unfortunate considering that the whole theater was of comparable importance to the Eastern Front.
Come to think of it the aren't many movies set on the Eastern front either. Enemy at the Gates and Come and See are the only ones that comes to mind.

The only movies that even come to mind that involve China in the 1920s / 30s are the 2nd Indiana Jones movie (Temple of Doom) the Tom Selleck movie High Road to China and The Sand Pebbles with Steve McQueen.

I suspect a good part of this is the pouting by the powerful China Lobby following the victory of the communists in China, 1949. The China Lobby was solidly on the side of McCarthy in the "red scare" of the 1950s so I think it was politically difficult for US media to involve China as anything but an evil empire caricature until the 1990s, similar to the Soviet Union only things warmed up with the Soviets earlier than China thanks in part to spy movies occasionally showing a "good Russian" befriending a western spy.
 

Voros

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The whole Interwar/Second Sino-Japanese war is a severally under used setting in media outside of China, and to my understanding most movies set during that period are just glossy propaganda flicks meant to appease the CCP and whitewash their involvement in the war. Unfortunate considering that the whole theater was of comparable importance to the Eastern Front.
Come to think of it the aren't many movies set on the Eastern front either. Enemy at the Gates and Come and See are the only ones that comes to mind.

Tarkovsky's Ivan's Childhood and Larisa Shepitko's The Ascent are both excellent Soviet-era films, very much not nationalist propaganda, set on the Eastern Front. Shepitko was actually married to the director of Come and See!

I was recently able to watch Kobayashi's masterpiece on the war in Manchuria, The Human Condition 1-3 on TCM. Simply amazing and deserves to be much more widely seen.

From the Chinese-side, putting aside the nationalist propaganda epics, I'd say the best I've seen by far is the early Zhang Yimou's Red Sorghum, although only the last reel is actually about the war. Yimou's more recent films are terrible though, he has become a complete party hack, stay far away.
 
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3rik

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Yimou's more recent films are terrible though, he has become a complete party hack, stay far away.
I really haven't been paying attention to his work but his earlier movies, esp. the ones he made with Gong Li, are among my favourites.
 

Voros

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I really haven't been paying attention to his work but his earlier movies, esp. the ones he made with Gong Li, are among my favourites.

Yeah Red Sorghum stars Gong Li, they worked a lot together early on, he was one of the best of that generation of Chinese directors for sure. Unfortunately most of his peers from the late 80s and 90s have either become propagandists, gone silent or left the country.

Oddly, the younger, most radical of them, Jia Zhangke, despite various run-ins with the censors, has been able to remain and continue to work somehow.

Raise the Red Latern, also with Li in the lead, is my favourite of all his films.
 
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TristramEvans

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If I skip S1 & S2, are there any episodes that are still noteworthy? For character or setting stuff that will become important later?

Season One
The first episode sets up Q and is called back to in the exceptional series finale, but I wouldn't call it a necessary watch, you can pretty much get the gist of Q's whole deal from later episodes. It is fun to see McCoy's last cannon appearance though. Episodes The Naked Now (s01e03) and Datalore (s01e13) both have far-reaching consequences in the show and I'd say are worth watching, even if they aren't up to the quality of some of the best episodes of later seasons. The Neutral Zone (01e26) I think is a genuinely good episode, reintroducing one of Star Trek's best villains overall to the TNG timeline, ones who were used sparingly and with great impact over the series run. And Skin of Evil (s01e24) is definitely NOT a good episode but it's an important one, for the death of a main character that gets called back to often over the series' run.

Season Two
Though definitely hit or miss and the show hadn't found it's stride, I'm not sure I'd agree on skipping this one altogether, at least not on a first watch-through of the series. It contains what is, IMO, the best episode of the entire series: Measure of a Man (s02e09). This is one that I'd say to someone: 'if you watch no other Star Trek episode of ANY series ever, watch this one". Q Who? (s02e16) introduces the main nemesis for the entire series, and sets up the season 3/season 4 finale/opening two-parter that many point to as TNG at it's best. And I'd say episode 21, Peak Performance, is just a lot of fun, especially if you're a fan of Data at all.

Honestly, I'd watch season 2 but skip episodes 1 (The Child), 2 (Where silence has lease), 4 (the Outragous Okona), 10 (the dauphin), 18 (Up the long ladder), and 24 (shades of grey).
 
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urbwar

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Today's movie was The Guardians of Touching Jinjue, which is one of many endless of the Legend of Mojin. Not bad, but some really bad CGI effects on giants wolves. Sadly, I could not find a trailer for it to share
 

3rik

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Yeah Red Sorghum stars Gong Li, they worked a lot together early on, he was one of the best of that generation of Chinese directors for sure. Unfortunately most of his peers from the late 80s and 90s have either become propagandists, gone silent or left the country.

Oddly, the younger, most radical of them, Jia Zhangke, despite various run-ins with the censors, has been able to remain and continue to work somehow.

Raise the Red Latern, also with Li in the lead, is my favourite of all his films.
I remember watching and enjoying Happy Times (2000). Had deterioration already set in by then?

 

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Last night I watched an enjoyable double feature of Shaw Bros movies... 'The Five Deadly Venoms' and 'Shaolin Temple'... neither of which I'd seen before, despite having watching loads of such movies over the years.
Something I love about the genre is the willingness to trash the seeming protagonists/heroes partway in... so, unlike with most Western movies, I'm never quite sure what's going to happen, who is going to win/survive.
There's one I saw as a kid, that I've never managed to find again, where at the end of the movie the villains rip out the hero's heart with some special widget and... The End... that's it, guys dead, bad guy and demon sidekick win!
 

Voros

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I remember watching and enjoying Happy Times (2000). Had deterioration already set in by then?


Haven't seen that one, his mid-period is a mix of melodramas, comedies, thrillers and action films which while not reaching the peaks of his earlier films imo are quite competently made and enjoyable. The last film of his I enjoyed was House of Flying Daggers.
 

rumble

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TubiTV

Today I turned on my selfie camera to confirm I really, truly can't even.
Treasure Chest of Horrors is supposed to be a horror comedy, maybe. It's not just a b-movie. It's not even a b-movie made by film school dropouts. It's a b-movie made by film school students who are actively trying to fail their classes. And make sure they flush as many other peoples' careers with them whether they manage to graduate or not.
Simply put, it's a masterclass in failure, no matter what it was attempting to do.

I should point out that I didn't finish watching it and there's a sequel I couldn't bear to sample.

You're much better off watching the John Wick movies, Cabin in the Woods, or The Lost Room trilogy, all of which are also available on TubiTV.
 
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rumble

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Hulu

I switched Code Name Banshee off at the end of the opening scene since the only thing it foreshadowed was a disastrous viewing experience. Zorro couldn't save this no matter how he slashed it.

On the other hand, Chainsaw Man is weirdly successful. It's an absurd anime premise with inane characters that captures significant poignancy and some deep exploration of the human condition.
 

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Yeah Red Sorghum stars Gong Li, they worked a lot together early on, he was one of the best of that generation of Chinese directors for sure. Unfortunately most of his peers from the late 80s and 90s have either become propagandists, gone silent or left the country.

Oddly, the younger, most radical of them, Jia Zhangke, despite various run-ins with the censors, has been able to remain and continue to work somehow.

Raise the Red Lantern, also with Li in the lead, is my favourite of all his films.
To Live was one of my favourite Gong Li films, but it's quite depressing watching the characters' lives go from bad to worse during the Cultural Revolution and Great Leap Forward, all the while parroting the official line that "everything is getting better and better" in response to every misfortune. Incidentally, "banned in China" is usually an indicator of a Chinese film worth watching.

I remember watching and enjoying Happy Times (2000). Had deterioration already set in by then?
It started when Xi took power in 2012, and won't end until he's gone (and he's just made himself leader for life).

Since living through the 2019 crackdown in Hong Kong I find myself unable to watch anything either made in China or made elsewhere to suit the China (read "CCP") market. I just end up curling myself into a ball of anger at the memories, unable to actually take in what's on the screen. I binned a stack of DVDs when I left. Which is a pity, but on the basis that there is more good stuff than I will ever be able to watch I guess the bright side is that it leaves me more time for other things.
 

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I watched Wakanda Forever in a cinema packed with rowdy teens and the dimmest projector bulb in existence. I fear my 'meh' about the film was partly due to those factors instead of the actual film.
 

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Wife's been overseas for two weeks. I've killed Reacher and Hanna and Solos and Tales of the Jedi, caught up on Andor and The Peripheral, and I'm thinking about either Jack Ryan or The Terminal List before she gets back tonight.

I was also training for a Skullgirls tournament-- I was going to lose badly-- before I had to bow out because my piece-of-shit desktop crapped out again.
 

urbwar

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Sunday's movie was The Guardians of Touching Jinjue, which is one of many endless of the Legend of Mojin. Not bad, but some really bad CGI effects on giants wolves. Sadly, I could not find a trailer for it to share
 

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Tried watching The Wall. For a big budget flick with Matt Damon and Mando teaming up with Willem DaFoe and the Imperial Chinese army to fight CGI dinosaurs (the "real" reason the Great Wall of China was built, apparently), it sure was boring. I got about 30 minutes in and was like "nah..."
 

chuckdee

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Saw Wakanda Forever, and went in underwhelmed by the choice I already knew they were going to make. The movie was long, but not sure what they could have cut. It was a great movie, and had a few surprises I didn't expect. Still a bit meh about "the choice", but I can't deny it was a great movie, and Namor was great, and the motivations and plot were well done.
 

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Finished, and enjoyed, Warrior Nun.

Currently watching Black Lightning, which seems to be a very good Super Hero show.
 

urbwar

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Knocked out some episodes of NCIS, and now on NCIS: LA again. Smile is already on Paramount +, which I wasn't expecting. Might watch that on one of my days off
 

urbwar

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Watched a pair of NCIS: Hawaii episodes, and one each of FBI: Most Wanted and FBI: International. I'm currently watching The Needle of GuiMen, a Chinese film. The movie has a style of martial arts that involves acupuncture and needles, and the main character is also a doctor. I'm only 20 minutes into it, but it's pretty good so far
 

Mankcam

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Re-watching old episodes of Rake (original Australian version) - very funny stuff, Cleaver Greene is a great aussie character.
Great to watch it all in order this time.

Started watching Cabinet of Curiosities. Quite good so far,

Star Wars Andor also going very well
 

urbwar

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watching Machine Wars, a 2017 Chinese film about 4 college students during an alien invasion, and how they are humanity's last hope for survival. Clocking in just over an hour, it's as ridiculous as it sounds.
 
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