RSS feed for Brendan
  • Toy Story 1995

    ★★★★ Rewatched 08 Jun, 2013

    Haven't seen it in years, but this time paid attention to technical aspects. This film came out completely before physics simulation of any kind and it's fascinating to watch the film cut around very dodgy rope/string/cloth animation by minimizing shot lengths or framing emphasis. I also noticed that Andy owns precisely one teddy bear which appears in exactly one shot in the first act of the film in the middle distance for 20 frames or so (I would wager the…

  • The Terminator 1984

    ★★★ Rewatched 02 Mar, 2013

    James Cameron makes a film with large overtones of nihilism? It belongs in a museum!

  • Terminator 2: Judgment Day 1991

    ★★★ Rewatched 04 Mar, 2013

    Stray thought: Y'know, I bet this scene where the guard licks Sarah's face is in there solely to keep the audience from feeling muddled or bad for a single second when she savagely beats him with a broken mop handle later in order to escape.

  • My Neighbor Totoro 1988

    ★★★★ Watched 18 Feb, 2013

    I've always said that Ghibli films--ones especially written or directed by Hiyao Miyazaki especially--are films about process rather than plot. The magic is to observe how people behave within a certain set of parameters.

    My Neighbor Totoro is the ultimate statement on this technique, there is no essential conflict--not even self doubt. Just gently observed process.

    This was famously produced as part of a double bill with another animated classic about child siblings taking care of one another. One wonders if it was designed to be the front half or the back half when paired with Grave of the Fireflies.

  • Alien³ 1992

    ★★★★ Rewatched 17 Feb, 2013

    The more I see the (workprint) cut of this film, the more I've come to appreciate its under-realized ambition. At least it tried to capture the tone and stakes of Alien. Little did everybody know in 1992 that Hollywood and the games industry would be frantically laying successors (both official and in spirit) to the tone and thrills of James Cameron's action entry ad infinitum, ad absurdum.

    In the aftermath of the debacle that is Aliens: Colonial Marines a clever…

  • Pistol Opera 2001

    ★★★ Added

    A fascinating experiment in:

    1. Smashing the century-old institution of Continuity Editing to tiny pieces.

    2. Guaranteeing the failure of my relationship with the date I dragged to see it.

  • The King's Speech 2010

    ★★★ Added

    The Karate Kid for royalists and those that accord prestige to the RP dialect of the UK.

  • A Nightmare on Elm Street 1984

    ★★½ Rewatched 06 Feb, 2013

    Oh there's several things at play here: It's always interesting if you regress your way back through a pop culture phenomenon to come across the originating work last; how weird and unassuming certain elements could be that would later blow up to be touchstones. A Nightmare on Elm Street certainly does not anticipate that Freddy Kruger would become a one-liner spouting, horror Emcee that pre-adolescent children would routinely dress up as for Halloween in the 90s. Even in the opening…

  • Anatomy of a Murder 1959

    ★★★★½ Watched 31 Jan, 2013

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

  • Tabloid 2010

    ★★★★ Added

    You've got slut-shaming in my document of narcissistic personality disorder! No, you've got NPD in my document of a slut-shaming media complex!

  • Paperman 2012

    ★★★★ Watched 30 Jan, 2013

    This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.

  • Alphaville 1965

    ★★★½ Watched 21 Jan, 2013

    Due to technical issues I saw all but the last ten minutes of this linear criticism of the worst of Parisian architecture. Isn't that just like life?