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4815162342

Crunching the Numbers: Year 3

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    Award #2

    The Most Shameless Self-Promoting Film of The Year Award

    This award is given to the film that most obnoxiously and arrogantly utilizes everything about itself to try and depict its alleged awesomeness but turns out to be a total absolute failure at it

    The award goes to....

    3-D

    The film's name is in 3-D. The film is shown in 3-D. The main weapon of the aliens in the film is to cause the protagonists and victims to see everything in 3-D, which the audience then sees in 3-D. ISN'T THIS THE MOST AWESOME IDEA IN THE WORLD TO SHOW PEOPLE HOW AWESOME 3D IS AND HOW AWESOME OUR FILM IS BECAUSE IT IS IN 3D!!!!!!!!!

    No, it isn't. The movie sucks, it sucks very very very very very very very very very hard.

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    Uekacreator's Request: Black as Night

    "So when he turned up dead, I let it go. And I said to myself, this is the business we've chosen; I didn't ask who gave the order, because it had nothing to do with business!"

    In CAYOM 1.0 I took a leave of absence for a few years (Years 31-33 and kinda Year 34 too). In one of those years, 32 I think, Uekacreator made a film called Black as Night, about an aging retired mobster whose past is catching up with him and the enigmatic man who may be his only hope...at a cost. I remember that I really liked that film, so when Ueka said he was remaking the film with some changes due to the original being lost, I was intrigued in how the revised version would turn out. As it happens, this film is not Black as Night from CAYOM 1.0, it has some significant changes, I'm not even sure how much were deliberate or how much were inadvertent. In any case, this is not Uekacreator's Black as Night.

    This is better.

    Black as Night takes place in the earlier days of the 20th Century, when crime had a deeper hold on the American consciousness and attracted many of those who lacked opportunity to thrive. Frank Langella gives a strong performance as Donny Halls, an old ex-crime lord with a new name who quit the business in order to start a new life for him and his daughter Regina. Is he repentant? Not quite, but he's able to cut ties completely and start out legitimately enough, which is what makes the whole film so tragic, since if left unmolested Halls would have lived out a productive honest life for the rest of his years and maybe he would have found a measure of peace and redemption. Instead he gets played, by people who nurse grudges decades old, who can't put away hate or envy, who want to take away everything Halls has. The beauty of the film is that we can't quite root for our "hero" Leonard, because even when the film's final twist happens, even the "good" aspects of "good" Leonard can be easily interpreted as a mix of lust, envy, and selfishness, taking the girl instead of the money. Black as Night is a film where the innocent are murdered or manipulated, the quasi-redemptive are stopped in their tracks, and the would-be hero is just as corrupt morally as the people he is involved with.

    So, basically it's what you'd expect from a Paul Thomas Anderson crime epic, but even the expected can be damn great.

    Now as to the changes, there are two big things in this film I am pretty sure did not happen in the original version:

    - There was no 40-minute prologue showing Charlie growing up in NY

    - There was no final twist about the hero's identity, just the one twist in the climax

    Edited by 4815162342
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    The prologue thing was deliberate change. Wanted to flesh out the story a bit more. Adding more to the relationship was also deliberate. Now the twist ending here had its roots from the original version but as I couldn't remember exactly how that story happened (just the basic idea overall), I did flesh this ending out and so there was that final twist.Thanks for the review. B)

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    Award #2

    The Most Shameless Self-Promoting Film of The Year Award

    This award is given to the film that most obnoxiously and arrogantly utilizes everything about itself to try and depict its alleged awesomeness but turns out to be a total absolute failure at it

    The award goes to....

    3-D

    The film's name is in 3-D. The film is shown in 3-D. The main weapon of the aliens in the film is to cause the protagonists and victims to see everything in 3-D, which the audience then sees in 3-D. ISN'T THIS THE MOST AWESOME IDEA IN THE WORLD TO SHOW PEOPLE HOW AWESOME 3D IS AND HOW AWESOME OUR FILM IS BECAUSE IT IS IN 3D!!!!!!!!!

    No, it isn't. The movie sucks, it sucks very very very very very very very very very hard.

    You don't say.... :lol:
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    Next Award:

    The Unintentional (Or Was It?) Prequel Award

    This award is given to the film that whether by intent or by accident has through its characters and story set itself up as the prequel to an earlier film.

    The award goes to....

    Love in Poitiers

    Love in Poitiers is a tale of feminine ambition and spite, set in the 12th Century CE in France, Christmas 1172 to be precise. Eleanor of Aquitaine is the richest and most powerful woman in Europe and she is married to Henry II of England. The marriage is a turbulent one and after much in the way of politics, affairs, and drama Eleanor persuades a son of Henry to rebel against his father, instigating family feuds....wait a minute, I know this story, I've seen this before and the trouble it causes.

    This is a prequel to The Lion in Winter, the 1968 film starring Peter O'Toole as Henry II and Katherine Hepburn as Eleanor. That film, set in Christmas 1183, follows the political and familial machinations of Henry and Eleanor as they celebrate the holiday in France with their children and both parents try to use their children against the other and Eleanor tries to incite rebellion and the only thing different is that Prince Henry has been dead for some years and his death is a big shadow looming over those proceedings. Love in Poitiers is the film the details how all of those events come to pass, setting up the table for dramatic proceedings and family instability of all sorts. So, this film tells an earlier chapter in a story audiences have seen, giving a fuller picture.

    So, now that we know this is a prequel, how is the film? Well, it's stagy, which is mostly a good thing for a film like this. The film relies on close-quarter sets, character conversations, and other limited acts to get things moving and it's almost like a filmed theatrical production. Michael Sheen is very good, though his usual style is a contrast to the booming and powerful presence of O'Toole as Henry II in The Lion in Winter and in Beckett. It's not as good easily, but Sheen does well. Meryl Streep is great as Eleanor, though she has to be compared against the legendary Hepburn and though Streep is a legend too, here she also comes up wanting due to the high pedestal. Great acting and low-key stagy directing make this a very smooth and compelling drama, though it has some flaws in pacing and in structure.

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    Blankments' Request: Leitmotif

    When Going Down the Wrong Road Still Brings a Bit of Music to Your Ears

    There have been films about the making of films, but never has a film really taken a look at how the composing of music for a film has been done. Leitmotif takes us into the realm of the movie composer and the studio politics that flow with making your mark in that field. Of course it also throws in a truckload of romantic drama and double-crosses and triangles and jealousy and lots and lots of related stuff that sort of overtakes any meaningful examination of the studio system and the world of film music. But the film, even though it gets thrown onto completely the wrong track with its focus on vengeful exes and people sleeping with other people, remains compelling enough thanks to Soderbergh's shepherding of the star-studded cast. The film could have been a hell of a lot greater if it actually took the opportunity to explore what it means and what it takes to compose a score for a Hollywood production, but it does welll enough with the slightly overcooked romantic drama we get to stay an enjoyable film experience.

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    So we have 2 requests and 2 awards left. So let's go.

    The Premature E Award

    This award is given to a film that sets up things with lots of anticipation and then suddenly blows it all out and ends before any real awesomeness can happen. Kind of like that thing some guys have issue with.

    The award goes to....

    Alfred's Request: Planeswalkers: A New World

    This film sets itself up to be the epic film kickstarting a new Magic: The Gathering Franchise for a New CAYOM. And with a run-time of 148 minutes the film certainly promises epicness. So let's see what happens in the film:

    - A very lengthy narration/montage/flashback sequence that introduces us to Planeswalkers, some historical characters and their wars, and the powers these people wield and the destruction they cause.

    - Five people bickering about tracking someone

    - Flashbacks of Sam Worthington recruiting the four others of the group

    - Gary Oldman giving a shitload of exposition and magical technobabble as he creates portals that take the heroes to Earth, shows them around New York City, and the others go ga-ga and whatnot over the differences of Earth

    - More exposition as the five heroes try to blend in with Earth people and Earth places and get clues about where to go next

    - Intro of villain and henchwoman

    - Drawn-out confrontation and fight between the heroes and the henchwoman

    - Henchwoman escapes, the heroes argue, suddenly the US Army shows up. To Be Continued.

    Wait...that's it? That was all they did for 148 minutes? Seriously, that's maybe the first act of the film, an hour at most, and they drew it all out for 2.5 hours? I mean epic conversations can be epic, especially when it's Gary Oldman lecturing dumb-as-rocks people, but that's not enough to fill up a runtime like this. The film focues so much on presentation, drawn-out visuals of battles and duels and transporting across universes, and paragraph after paragraph of monologuing and narration that it forgets that there should be a somewhate complete story included as well. Instead we get maybe 1/3 of a story and the rest is a gigantic premature explosion of almost everything else. Planeswalkers has a problem with Premature E, but luckily they have medications for that sort of thing now.

    Edited by 4815162342
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