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Everything posted by HoldenMartinson

  1. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 124 - Suspiria (w/ Roxanne Benjamin)

    As someone who is legally blind, I appreciate that we get a really good death scene in this movie. His own dog eats the guy's throat out? A tip of my cane to you, Argento. For real. I'm 100% down for that type of representation. A yes for Suspiria. But a no to the groan at Thom Yorke doing the music for the remake. COME ON!!!
  2. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - The Host (2006)

    You know, I'd put nearly every other Bong Joon-ho film over it, but I'd also still put The Host in. So, I'm jazzed.
  3. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - Suspiria (1977)

    H-h-h-h-hell yessssssssss.
  4. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - Martyrs (2008)

  5. HoldenMartinson

    The Lobster

    It was Amy's favorite movie of 2016. So, it's totally possible. I don't know if I'd vote for it, but I like The Lobster. I'd love a good episode on it.
  6. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 121 - The Matrix (w/ Cameron Esposito)

    I mean, this is mostly in reference to Bruce Wayne/Batman. And the idea is that he's just really mopey, despite the fact that he has enough money and influence to change Gotham without having to dress in a costume and beat up bad guys. I don't think Esposito is trying to diminish the seriousness of depression. On some level, it's just not compelling to watch the most privileged type of person sulk in his own self-importance for three movies. This is from someone who really adores Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy.
  7. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 121 - The Matrix (w/ Cameron Esposito)

    No. I've tried re-watching The Matrix a couple times the last few years, and have gotten bored both times. I have a way easier time watching Wong Kar-wai and Terrence Malick movies than The Matrix. I agree that The Matrix is influential, but I don't like the influence it has had. I like this as an anti-materialist polemic, but gosh, I hate it when a movie has to shout its themes through a megaphone the way The Matrix does. The queer theory angle is interesting, but I don't think that's enough to propel it into canonocity. This COULD work as a social ally allegory, if Neo wasn't at the center of everything. If this were about being a small piece of something bigger, and the vitality in that, that'd be interesting. I know Amy doesn't like Pan's Labyrinth, but I much prefer the arc in that--though, ironically, it's the fictional world that sets the protagonist in that film free. Ofelia doesn't go with the fascists, nor the rebellion. She does her own thing, which I think is way neater than trading one higher power for another. The Matrix pays lip service to free-thinking and agency, but is far stauncher than I think it's aware of.
  8. HoldenMartinson

    Manhunter vs. Silence of the Lambs

    Just through sheer popularity, Silence of the Lambs would win this versus. In fact, one could argue that it's such a slam dunk, it'd be more interesting to do Manhunter on its own. Though, if we were allowed to include television, Hannibal would be my pick to represent this series.
  9. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - The Matrix (1999)

    It's a slam dunk, but Esposito is absolutely the right guest for this. Great episode on the horizon.
  10. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 120 - Last Tango in Paris (w/ Alison Willmore)

    I'm not sure how I'm voting. I'll find my reaction as I'm writing, but gosh, this is difficult. Positives: This is among the most beautiful films I've ever seen. I had not previously watched Last Tango in Paris, and I was stunned at just how meticulously framed and thought-out the photography is in this picture. If nothing else, Last Tango in Paris is immensely watchable, despite being a 130-minute relationship drama whose moments of transgression are pretty infrequent. What also works, for me at least, are the performances at the center of the film. Maybe Brando is being really weird in certain spots, but they didn't feel artificial. His best moments are when he's quiet and brooding, though. Those moments are only slightly undercut by the strange turns of menace that come throughout the film. Similarly, Maria Schneider is so magnetic in every scene she's in, and the film could've used more of her. I think Last Tango in Paris has some insights on aging and putting away the past, which is really the only thematic thread that carries, but is done relatively well. We even have that moment at the end, where Paul is wearing Jeanne's father's hat, which makes him look like Stanley from A Streetcar Named Desire, and then he takes off the hat, revealing just how much of an old man he is. What doesn't work for Last Tango in Paris is the character logic, which--as is pointed out in the episode--falls apart after the butter scene. If the butter scene had come towards the end of the film, this would have made for a clearer character turn. We would see Brando clawing at the remains of control he has in his life by exploiting the one person in his life that brings him joy. We somewhat get this with the anal-fingering scene near the end, but that isn't given nearly the weight of the butter scene. Similarly, we never really figure out what the hell Jeanne even wants. Is she afraid of growing old and decaying? Does she think she can fix Brando? Does she just want to be in an affair where she has privacy, anonymity, or just semblance of control? The way her performance is edited suggests that she is confident in nearly every decision she makes, but the writing would suggest Jeanne feels confined by everyone and everything, including, by the end, Paul. And I can't tell if the film is trying to be self-aware, but Thomas's failure to understand Jeanne through film just feels like the pot calling the kettle black. The one film I'm reminded of while thinking of this, and especially when thinking of The Canon is American Beauty. That's also a film about feeling that time is or has gotten away from a person, mostly from the point-of-view of an insufferable middle-aged man whose whole goal is to sleep with a woman half his age. American Beauty is, once again, a gorgeously shot, very much of-its-time type of picture. Of course, Last Tango in Paris is certainly far more important, but neither film is all that satisfying. I guess I have to make a decision, but neither option feels right. As lovely as Last Tango in Paris is to watch, as much conversation as the picture generates, and as much as I admire any movie that pokes fun at Goddard, I'll have to go with NAY. If the movie gets in, great. We've certainly had worse (*cough* Friday *cough*). Still, Last Tango in Paris is not very good. Who is this for? Why would I recommend this to anyone, other than film people? If we had to but a Bertolucci in the canon, I'd go with The Conformist. Otherwise, I don't personally find entry justified.
  11. HoldenMartinson


    This is just bad for everyone, the brunt of which will probably fall on Devin. But seriously, what the actual hell? I know a lot of people have been pretty supportive of Devin and his recovery, but this is just a mess. It was the wrong call, no matter how good the intentions were.
  12. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - Friday (1995)

    Um, I think you're forgetting Are We Done Yet?: The epoch-defining sequel to the comedic masterstroke of Are We There Yet?.
  13. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - Friday (1995)

    No. Not even "Bye, Felicia." Just no.
  14. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 118 - Real Life (w/ Jason Zinoman)

    I prefer Modern Romance by a mile, but this is still pretty terrific. Albert Brooks FOREVER.
  15. Reading this thread, I'm especially upset that Magnolia wasn't in the conversation. In fact, I watched it the day before the episode dropped, and even though it's ostensibly the ensemble-ist ensemble feature there is, Tom Cruise is so crazy good in it. How did Michael Caine win an Oscar over Cruise??? Not only that, Magnolia, as hands-down messy as it is, is far more canon-worthy than either of these. Risky Business is more worthy than either of these films.Even Rain Man is even better. I don't know if I agree that Top Gun was chosen to be shoehorned in--though, that did definitely cross my mind. I'm guessing one of the Cracked guys brought it in without much of a defense. So, whatever. If it was the case, that Top Gun and Minority Report were chosen just to get Top Gun in, that'd be incredibly weird, but I really, really don't think Amy would do that. In any case, it is a little uneven. But whatever. Worse films have made it in, I suppose.
  16. Tom Cruise is a fine actor, but gosh, I'm not feeling either of these films. Top Gun is so meh. So is Minority Report--or Mehnority Report--but if I'm going to pick the one I want people to see? Minority Report. There's all this disconnected dead weight on the fringes. I'm not a fan of either of these, but Minority Report is pretty good, with solid storytelling. So, there you go.
  17. As someone who has always been anti-neither for the run of the show, this is my questionable Tom Cruise performance in Legend. This is the episode that takes me to the edge of whether or not a neither is justified. I could not think of a more beige pairing. While neither film is horrible, neither is all that great, either. While I'm certainly all for a solid middlebrow film, I don't think either of these fits the mold quite well. Though, if I have to pick, I'd go with 9 to 5, if only for the cultural impact. As much as I enjoy the chemistry between the leads, and as funny as the film is, it's super uneven. Best Little Whorehouse is just so plodding so much of the time. I can't give much credit to a film that has me pausing and getting up to do other stuff this often. So, 9 to 5 it is.
  18. Except that Lost in Translation is every bit Scarlett Johansson's movie. We see her disillusionment as much as we see Murray's. And The Virgin Suicides might be about women, but it's from the perspective of a bunch of dudes. Anyway, yeah. People who dismissed Coppola for the access she had for her movies is silly. A good movie is a good movie. Also, coming from nothing doesn't mean your movie is going to be better. It might be impressive on a meta level, but that's about it. People just want a good picture. Anyway, yeah. Marie Antoinette is good, but it's not quite the experience of Lost in Translation. I get why Amy prefers Marie Antoinette, but it's an argument that comes around a lot, which is the ambition and impressive nature of the production itself. I can respect that, but what am I actually going to watch? Lost in Translation is a no-brainer.
  19. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - Lost in Translation (2003) vs. Marie Antoinette (2006)

    Re-watched both, and it's not even close. There's a gentle magic to Lost in Translation, despite its myriad of imperfections. It hits all the right beats, and gets its biggest moments just right. Looking through a more socially conscious lens, it's not really insensitive, nor does it appropriate anything. I mean, I like Marie Antoinette fine, but I just can't get excited about it. I don't feel it the same way I feel Lost in Translation. That's what it comes down to for me.
  20. HoldenMartinson

    Homework - Lost in Translation (2003) vs. Marie Antoinette (2006)

    There's no way it doesn't go Lost in Translation, which is not to say Marie Antoinette isn't a good film. It's a Rocky v. First Blood type of deal, or The Wild Bunch v. The Getaway. Lost in Translation just has so much cultural caché that it'd take a miracle for it to lose.
  21. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 110 - Z (w/ Richard Lawson)

    This is a solid yes from me. You can see the DNA of this picture in so many things, and the fact that this presages the paranoid thriller that would dominate the 70s--especially given that this is pre-Watergate--is radical in its own way. Also, I think we'd be okay without Three Days of the Condor. Z is that good.
  22. HoldenMartinson

    Guest Suggest

    It just occurred to me--if you wanted the best discussion on craft, I'd try and get Tony Zhou. If ever you wanted someone who knows their shit, and who has super strong, well-informed opinions, he's your guy.
  23. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 109 - Raising Arizona (w/ Ira Madison III)

    Can't wait to get a Coen drama in here. As it stands, two for two with their comedies is a great place to start.
  24. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 108 - The Driver (w/ Edgar Wright)

    If we can live in a world where Working Girl is in the canon, while Empire Strikes Back is ineligible for further consideration, I think we can live with The Driver entering the canon.
  25. HoldenMartinson

    Episode 108 - The Driver (w/ Edgar Wright)

    Tracking her mentions on the show, I think she was born in Michigan, then lived in Texas, and then went to college in Oklahoma. Also, yeah. When you've lived in a few different states for several years at a time, you do sort of begin to say you're from multiple places. Maybe it is cherry picking, but it's waaaaaaay easier to say "I'm from blank" than to go through your entire geographic history.