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Messages - radiator

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Film & TV / Re: Current TV Boxset Addiction
« on: 14 September, 2019, 05:12:22 pm »
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance

I never really cared for the movie - I can barely remember anything about it, honestly - but put this on on a whim, and it is absolutely incredible. I blew through four episodes in one sitting and had to force myself to switch it off so I could go to bed. Much darker and more Games of Thronesy than I would have thought. God knows why Netflix thought it was good business sense to spend what looks like an absolute fortune and assemble such a huge amount of talent, from voice cast* to art department to music to writing, for a prequel to a flop kids movie that is too scary for kids from 30 years ago, but I’m so glad they did. This is something really special.

*and WHAT a voice cast it is. Seriously, you will not believe who they got for this. But for me it’s an unrecognisable Simon Pegg that steals the show as the Skeksis Chamberlain.

Also caught the first episode of the third and final season of The Deuce, which is still one of the very best series currently running. The story picks up following another five year time jump to 1985, with the AIDS crisis in full swing. This is going to be a rough watch.

Film & TV / Re: Star Wars Episode IX
« on: 14 September, 2019, 02:06:27 am »
I can't stop looking at the the official Rise of Skywalker poster. It's so weird.

It's not terrible per se, it's just that it looks like it should be the cover of a tie-in Star Wars novel or videogame rather than a major motion picture. It looks cheap*, and a far cry from the excellent teaser poster for The Last Jedi.

*I gather the still of Palpatine was actually sourced from a photo of a toy, which is quite amusing.

Off Topic / Re: The Political Thread
« on: 12 September, 2019, 07:50:52 pm »
Trump supporters and Brexiteers are by and large right to feel aggrieved.

I think I disagree, but then I have to make an assumption as to what you're suggesting they have a right to feel aggrieved about.

I can think of things where I don't think they have the right to feel aggrieved. Like, a Brexiteer doesn't have the right to feel aggrieved about the EU forcing the UK to maintain a certain banana curvature, because that was just a load of shit thought up by a younger Boris.

Trump supporters don't have the right to feel aggrieved by a wave of criminal immigrants, because there was no data to suggest that the asylum seekers at the border were criminals. It's just that Trump called them rapists and thieves.

Maybe I didn't explain myself clearly, but that's sort of my point - the anger is real/arguably justified, but that anger is being directed at the wrong targets. Its the same old 'blame the other' tactic.

I'm not even remotely an expert on the subject, but the real problem, as I see it, is one of wealth inequality (the North/South divide in both the US and the UK, decades of right wing/neoliberal economic policy and the decline of industry, trade unions etc etc etc). Like, it's not hard to see why large swathes of the population feel disenfranchised and left behind, and why that anger eventually led to a backlash, and a rejection of the status quo.

I've travelled a lot around the US in the last few years, and the inequality and rural/urban divide here is even more stark than it is in the UK. Whole towns just cast off and left to rot, an out of control crisis of homelessness and poverty that is bizarrely, maddeningly underreported. Even five years ago when I moved here it was easy to sense a feeling of unease and foreboding in the air every time I stepped out of my metropolitan bubble.

It's easy to poke fun at Brexiteers and Trump supporters and dismiss them all as loons, but it isn't going to make them go away. Pointing the finger at Russia and wasting time with things like the Mueller investigation is just avoiding talking about the real, underlying social problems that led us to this mess.

That's my two cents, anyway.

10 years of all the papers constantly laying the blame for our ills on the EU, with a huge slab of lies, hyperbole and racism on top, can’t NOT have had an effect on the nation’s psyche.

More like 40 years, isn't it? There's been spurious, bendy banana type stories about the EU for as long as I can remember.

Games / Re: Nintendo Switch
« on: 12 September, 2019, 06:12:27 pm »
Too many games to play is a bigger cliche than too many comics to read - and I sympathize with both!

I feel like the first couple of years of the Switch sometimes suffered from the usual Nintendo console trickle of quality games, and at times it felt like there wasn't much on the horizon, and I was starting to get a little sick of playing indie Metroidvanias to fill the gaps. But this year its really felt like its kicked into high gear.

I didn't even mention the new Pokemon, Astral Chain, Little Town Hero, Mario Maker 2, Dragon Quest XI, Ni No Kuni or Animal Crossing...

Shame that Daemon X Machina seems to have got fairly lukewarm reviews across the board, but you can't win them all.

Games / Re: Nintendo Switch
« on: 12 September, 2019, 05:56:38 pm »
OK, so I now officially have Too Many Switch Games to play.

What with the arrival of the 20 SNES games (with more to follow), I have barely had time to get my teeth into Fire Emblem: Three Houses, and the Zelda: Link's Awakening remake drops next week, promptly followed by The Witcher III, and Luigi's Mansion 3 shortly after that.... Not to mention Untitled Goose Game, Ori and the Blind Forest, Doom Eternal and Samurai Shodown, among others.

This really is an incredible console, and the library is getting better and better by the week.

Off Topic / Re: The Political Thread
« on: 12 September, 2019, 05:28:46 pm »
As with the election of Trump (and the Mueller investigation), the whole Russia angle (imho) has been overplayed, and stems from a desire to shift the blame for our malaise onto an external actor, when in fact the causes of the dysfunction in our society are much closer to home. If we're gong to blame anyone, the likes of the Telegraph and the Daily Mail deserve far more blame than a few Russian bots shitposting on facebook.

The uncomfortable fact about both Brexit and Trump is that they were both somewhat inevitable (in hindsight), and can't be dismissed as the result of some big conspiracy, or social media manipulation. They both happened for a reason. Trump supporters and Brexiteers are by and large right to feel aggrieved. Their anger is understandable, and things do need to change. It's just that (imo) they have been conditioned by right wing politicians to target their anger at the wrong people. Same as it ever was.

Film & TV / Re: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
« on: 10 September, 2019, 08:46:27 pm »
Scorsese, The Coens and Fincher are the obvious ones. Maybe Tim Burton and Peter Jackson.

Absolutely yes to the first 3 - they are actually ones that came up in the discussion but slipped my mind. Scorsese's output is patchy, but he'll occasionally still put out something like Wolf of Wall Street that really hits the zeitgeist. I feel like Burton and Jackson have got lost in franchise/cgi land, sadly.

Jordan Peele is certainly getting there, isn't he - his movies are a huge deal, especially on this side of the pond.

Edgar Wright is up there - he's still making quality original films on his own terms, but again, he's kind of a small fish/cult figure in Hollywood terms.

I'd put it in the same category as Django Unchained - fairly entertaining, nothing special

Each to their own - I absolutely adore Django, and find it riotously entertaining and often laugh out loud hilarious from beginning to end. In many ways it feels like Tarantino's tightest and most focused movie of the last decade or so.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 10 September, 2019, 06:38:31 pm »
Also - it has undoubtedly the coolest visual portrayal of magic (as in wizardy stuff) I've ever seen in a film. Wonder who came up with all that hand jive stuff - could watch that stuff all day.

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 10 September, 2019, 06:35:41 pm »
Deserved much better treatment, and probably a much better title too. (I've a proper review somewhere upthread).

The studio really sent it out to die, didn't they? The marketing was dreadful - even the posters sucked. And was it written into Patrick Stewart's contract to not appear in any trailers? His appearence would be a neat surprise if you weren't expecting it (hence the spoiler tag) but it seemed odd to not even mention him in the marketing. Hope it eventually finds the audience it deserves on streaming.

Film & TV / Re: Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
« on: 10 September, 2019, 06:26:19 pm »
One of those films that I felt very mixed about initially, but it stuck with me after and I've talked about a lot with friends. Once I could really put together what Tarantino was going for I really came around. Plus it's a rare treat to see a big budget Hollywood production these days that isn't a franchise cgi fest.

On that note it also raised an interesting discussion about how many auteur directors are left?

I'm talking big name, old school directors with a real brand or identity, and enough clout to command large studio budgets and A list casts, and where each new film of theirs feels like a big deal... because when you think about it, there really aren't that many.

Wes Anderson
possibly Shamalayan (though personally I've never been a fan)

I'm struggling to think of many others...

Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 10 September, 2019, 12:48:59 am »

The Kid Who Would Be King

Caught this on a flight just now. It’s a real shame it flopped and that there is seemingly absolutely no one out there championing - or even talking about - it,  as I thought it was a charming little family film that deserved to do much better. I smiled a lot throughout, and the guy who plays young Merlin is a hoot, easily the standout character and actor. It’s testament to how funny and watchable he is that while Merlin’s older self is sporadically played by an extremely well-loved older actor,  you actually find yourself wishing you were watching the young guy and not him.

If I have a complaint, its that the film is a good 20mins too long - there’s a lengthy section in the second act that really should have been cut. There are at least one too many ‘all is lost’ moments, and the film as a whole seems like it would flow much better with a zippier 90-100 minute running time. Still, its a strong four out of five for me and a future cult classic for many, I expect/hope. For a 2000ad connection, I caught ex art droid Robert Bliss’ name in the credits as a concept artist.

I also tried to watch Bumblebee (another recent underperforming family film) on the same flight but switched it off after 30 minutes or so. I haven’t seen any of the previous Transformers films but I had heard good things about this one. Didn’t really do anything for me - the script and dialogue seemed very trite and witless compared to that of The Kid Who Would Be King, and the overuse of the period pop soundtrack was a bit obnoxious. I like 80s music as much as the next person, but constantly blasting 20 seconds of a different song seemed a bit hack, and is excessive to the point where it started to get on my nerves a bit.

Games / Re: Telltale Games set to return!!
« on: 28 August, 2019, 11:56:25 pm »
Could never get in TT's games - they're like point and click adventure games with all of the puzzles - ie the actual gameplay - removed.

Off Topic / Re: Y'know what really grinds my gears?
« on: 22 August, 2019, 01:16:10 am »
Think I've mentioned this before - maybe even on this thread - but living in the US the continued cultural dominance/ubiquity of middle of the road 60s and 70s 'classic rock' is baffling as it is aggravating.

Turn on the radio or walk into any bar here and I guarantee you will almost never hear any music released after 1976. I swear to God I feel like I have to hear Hotel California by The Eagles four or five times a week. It drives me up the wall sometimes.

It's as if punk, new wave and hip hop never happened for huge swathes of this country. It's so absurd to me - this music is almost 50 years old, it belongs in a museum! Maybe time to let it go and move on? It's like if people in the 1970s all still insisted on listening to music from the 1920s and 1930s. I feel like in the UK and Europe in general the inverse is true, and you're unlikely to ever hear anything before the 80s.

Off Topic / Re: It's a bit warm/ wet/ cold outside
« on: 21 August, 2019, 09:53:53 pm »
Climate Change Denial: A Measured Response


Yeah, seen that. Very funny. Loved the bit where he responds to that dickhead senator and asks how people can sell their houses and move inland when they’re underwater.

That's Ben Shapiro - not a senator, but very much a dickhead. He's probably best known in the UK for making an absolute fool of himself while getting interviewed by Andrew Neil a couple of months ago.


Film & TV / Re: Last movie watched...
« on: 21 August, 2019, 07:01:27 pm »
I'd argue that there's something in the first time viewing that you can't get on repeat viewing (and even more so in certain pieces), and so I disagree with your sentiment.  There's clearly a difference between knowing and not knowing, especially when a particular reveal is like the final piece in a jigsaw that you weren't even fully aware was being put together until that point.

Key examples:
Sixth Sense
The Usual Suspects
Citizen Kane
Soylent Green
The Third Man
Fight Club

Agreed. If you say 'Historical revisionism' and mention it in the same breath as Inglorious Basterds, you're essentially telegraphing exactly how the film will end, robbing it of much of its tension. I don't consider myself excessively prissy about spoilers, but I'd personally have been a little annoyed if I'd inadvertently read that particular sentence before seeing the film myself.

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