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  1. linkster

    A movie watchers blog

    Bad Times at the El Royale Cabin in the Woods' Drew Goddard's anthology movie set in the late 60s Gutted I never managed a cinema viewing, not because it's a particularly great film but it looks and sounds absolutely wonderful, but it didn't manage a cinema run long enough to span our holiday last autumn. It's a curious one because at well over two hours I stuck it on tonight and was convinced I'd be finishing it in the morning, but here I am still just about awake, and yet there is in truth very little to ponder for all its twists & turns. A character piece set in the once grand El Royale, an hotel with the state line of Nevada and California literally cleaving it in two, allowing guests the novelty of choosing.This concept is introduced in a very funny scene by the young concierge. It's one of those moments that reminds you of an altogether different director - Wes Anderson. Aspect ratio, and frankly script, aside, there is more than a passing resemblance between this hotel movie and another hotel movie. Uncomfortably close at times. In all fairness, El Royale manages to walk the line of avoiding being overly pretentious or just plain plagiaristic by virtue of its craft. The framing of the early shots is absolutely exquisite, as is the use of colour - reminding me of The Founder owing to the parallels of chrome and neon. Really beautiful without pulling you out of the movie. And just like The Founder's obsession with industrial design, the cinematographer seems to have an almost pornographic enjoyment of close ups of a juke box which is more like some magical child's toy in its intricacy. In story terms, this is more Tarantino, but again so much less. A priest, a singer, a salesman, and a hippie, all convene off season in the aforementioned hotel. John Hamm tries gamely to provide exposition on behalf of the guests but while he ought to be a shoe in (typecast even) as a 60s salesman, he's a little forced, wooden even, allowing the others to come off better with less to do. Later on, we're introduced to Chris Hemsworth, another perennial try hard, tremendous fun in Cabin and given the role here of Charles Mansun in all but name. Like Hamm, he is given center stage for a prolonged period but just doesn't have the chops to sustain it. I guess it'd be fair to say that ultimately Bad Times at the El Royal really is a case of style over substance, but there are far worse ways to spend a couple of hours.
  2. linkster

    Good Cover Versions

  3. linkster

    Good Cover Versions

  4. linkster

    Comedy timing

    Nice beaver - first time viewing nearly cost me my life, couldnt breathe
  5. linkster

    Happy Death Day & Happy Death Day 2U

    Absolutely loved both of them
  6. linkster

    Deadwood Film - 1st June Sky Atlantic

    Well i must admit it’s exciting to see them back together. I still worry its going to have the feel of something crowdfunded tho.
  7. linkster

    What’s the worst film you have ever seen?

    That’s personal tho, surely? Again i will never watch The Room, or any knowingly bad movie. Same reason i dont go looking for nutter opinions on the Internet. So my worst is the one i hoped would be great but was not.
  8. linkster

    What’s the worst film you have ever seen?

    I did that on page one. For all the reasons given.
  9. linkster

    Good Cover Versions

  10. linkster

    Tombstone - The Western Film Genre

    Val Kilmer is exceptional in it, but TBH I struggle to remember much besides him. "Let's have a spelling contest" is achingly funny.
  11. linkster

    Songs that makes you want to cry - for no solid reason

    I think ive only heard it once but its totally burned in my memory. It’s classic country, that's for sure
  12. linkster

    Songs that makes you want to cry - for no solid reason

    Dolly Parton’s rendition of I Will Always Love You (the Whitney hit). It sounds like someone begging to be spared domestic violence, its utterly gut wrenching
  13. linkster

    A movie watchers blog

    It’s rllmuk. We are all capable of being that guy. edited for sake of peace.
  14. linkster

    A movie watchers blog

    Ring Hideo Nakata's influential ghost story turns 20 There's a lad on my team I talk to about movies, I asked him before tonight's Showcase Flashback screening of a new 4k restoration if he was a fan. Apparently it scared him to death. When he was 9. And that was the English language remake. So, two decades have passed since the urban legend of a VHS recording of a late night broadcast on an obscure cable channel brought creepy phone calls and death within a week to all who saw it first entered the mainstream. This is plausible, since I have a teenage cat named after the monstrous spawn of a witch and a goblin, though the cat is an idiot and far more likely to fall down a well than ever escape from one. I can't honestly say I ever found Ring all that scary. After all the hype, I was a little nonplussed and dare I say even slightly bored when I first saw that Tartan Asia DVD all those years ago. But then THAT jaw-dropping ending, thankfully not ruined for beforehand. On many, many viewings since, curiously the movie grew on me a little more each time. I was gobsmacked when the trailer aired in the cinema about a month ago in that nothing was left out, literally nothing. 20 people roughly in my viewing tonight, hopefully like me fans who just wanted to enjoy it on the big screen (the picture was great, the audio simply outstanding), but you have to wonder why anyone new to it would have bothered after that ruinous montage. What was interesting were the trailers beforehand ("appropriate for the movie certificate"). In other words, a load of horror movies, and one - of course - about mutants. One, an obvious Insidious clone by "James Wan", bored me so quickly I read my phone and yet I knew by the soundtrack pretty much what was happening. Such is most horror today. Ring didn't invent these cliches, but nor is it immune from them. What it is, above all, is extraordinarily patient. There are shades of John Carpenter of course, even Ghbili where it concerns the impossibly cute Yoichi (the scene where he encounters his estranged father in the rain is pure Miyazaki). The striking opening, two girls gossiping while home alone, is played completely straight, save for a complete lack of soundtrack or ambient noise. Setting the tone for the rest of the movie, there is nothing at all extraneous - no side characters (none worthy of names, at any rate), no diversions, just a growing sense of unease at what is absent rather than what's been added. And then the phone rings. Mostly, the movie is concerned with following around a local news reporter who quite reasonably and yet, as we already know, wholly unwisely tries to see if there's any truth in the bizarre rumours, until she too is personally touched when a young girl her child is friends with turns up dead. This takes her to Izu where again, at entirely its own pace and with nothing overtly sinister happening, we're lead to the moment where we first encounter the tape, and 20 years on this is still a masterpiece of fucked up - none of the imagery makes sense, and is utterly alien to the world we've become accustomed to, as it's supposed to be - shades of the hive mind scenes in Quatermass and the Pit which I still shudder to think of. The audio is quite simply an anxiety attack played out in 7.1. I'm delighted to find these sequences have lost absolutely none of their ability to hold your attention utterly. Whilst the ending is still spectacular - though I sense an effect or two have been added, in an ill advised bout of Lucas style meddling - the high point for me was always when the screen doors are flung open and Yoichi is in front of the TV. The patience and the silence are rewarded in spades in moments like this. It's hard to say if this is a movie that's genuinely aged well. Audiences today wouldn't find enough in it to keep them entertained, I expect, the trailers before all but proving that. Yes there's A Quiet Place and Hereditary but both feature hateful characters where Ring proves bad things happen to good people just cos.
  15. linkster

    Rage Against The Machines first ever gig

    Close enough i thought it was what they said though? (Not seen the clip yet)

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