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> What Movies Have You Seen Recently?, Old and new
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MDF3530 
  Posted: 21-Feb-2005, 04:54 PM
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Here is noted film critic Roger Ebert's review of "Constantine"...

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No, "Constantine" is not part of a trilogy including "Troy" and "Alexander." It's not about the emperor at all, but about a man who can see the world behind the world, and is waging war against the scavengers of the damned. There was a nice documentary about emperor penguins, however, at Sundance this year. The males sit on the eggs all winter long in like 60 degrees below zero.

Keanu Reeves plays Constantine as a chain-smoking, depressed demon-hunter who lives above a bowling alley in Los Angeles. Since he was a child, he has been able to see that not all who walk among us are human. Some are penguins. Sorry about that. Some are half-angels and half-devils. Constantine knows he is doomed to hell because he once tried to kill himself, and is trying to rack up enough frames against the demons to earn his way into heaven.

There is a scene early in the movie where Constantine and his doctor look at his X-rays, never a good sign in a superhero movie. He has lung cancer. The angel Gabriel (Tilda Swinton) tells him, "You are going to die young because you've smoked 30 cigarettes a day since you were 13." Gabriel has made more interesting announcements. Constantine has already spent some time in hell, which looks like a post-nuclear Los Angeles created by animators with a hangover. No doubt it is filled with carcinogens.

The half-angels and half-devils are earthly proxies in the war between God and Satan. You would think that God would be the New England Patriots of this contest, but apparently there is a chance that Satan could win. Constantine's lonely mission is to track down half-demons and cast them back to the fires below. Like Blade, the vampire-killer, he is surprisingly optimistic, considering he is one guy in one city dealing on a case-by-case basis, and the enemy is global.

Constantine has a technical advisor named Beeman (Max Baker), who lives in the ceiling of the bowling alley among the pin-spotting machines, and functions like Q in the James Bond movies. Here he is loading Constantine with the latest weaponry: "Bullet shavings from the assassination attempt on the Pope, holy water from the river of Jordan, and, you'll love this, screech beetles." The screech beetles come in a little matchbox. "To the fallen," Max explains, "the sound is like nails on a blackboard." Later there is a scene where Constantine is inundated by the creatures of hell, and desperately tries to reach the matchbox and get those beetles to screeching.

Rachel Weisz plays Angela Dodson, an L.A. police detective whose twin sister, Isabel, has apparently committed suicide. Isabel reported seeing demons, so Angela consults Constantine, who nods wisely and wonders if Isabel jumped, or was metaphysically pushed. Later in the film, to show Angela that she also has the gift of seeing the world behind the world, Constantine holds her underwater in a bathtub until she passes out and sees the torments of hell. No bright white corridors and old friends and Yanni for her. You wonder what kind of an L.A. cop would allow herself to be experimentally drowned in a bathtub by a guy who lives over a bowling alley.
Together, they prowl the nighttime streets. At one point, Constantine needs to consult Midnite (Djimon Hounsou), a former witch doctor who runs a private nightclub where half-angels and half-demons can get half-loaded and talk shop. There is a doorman. To gain admittance, you have to read his mind and tell him what's on the other side of the card he's holding up. "Two frogs on a bench," Constantine says. Could have been a lucky guess.

There is a priest in the film, the alcoholic Father Hennessy (Pruitt Taylor Vince), whose name, I guess, is product placement. Strange that there is a priest, since that opens the door to Catholicism and therefore to the news that Constantine is not doomed unless he wages a lifelong war against demons, but need merely go to confession; three Our Fathers, three Hail Marys, and he's outta there. Strange, that movies about Satan always require Catholics. You never see your Presbyterians or Episcopalians hurling down demons.

The forces of hell manifest themselves in many ways. One victim is eaten by flies. A young girl is possessed by a devil, and Constantine shouts, "I need a mirror! Now! At least three feet high!" He can capture the demon in the mirror and throw it out the window, see, although you wonder why supernatural beings would have such low-tech security holes.

Reeves has a deliberately morose energy level in the movie, as befits one who has seen hell, walks among half-demons, and is dying. He keeps on smoking. Eventually he confronts Satan (Peter Stormare), who wears a white suit. (Satan to tailor: "I want a suit just like God's.") Oh, and the plot also involves the Spear of Destiny, which is the spear that killed Christ, and which has been missing since World War II, which seems to open a window to the possibility of Nazi villains, but no.


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Rindy 
Posted: 22-Feb-2005, 04:30 PM
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QUOTE (IrishBecca30 @ 19-Feb-2005, 08:23 PM)
I'm way behind the times...I just watched The Legend of The Fall, with Bradd Pitt... blink.gif

Legends of the fall is one of my favorites smile.gif smile.gif smile.gif I have seen it many times.

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BluegrassLady 
Posted: 22-Feb-2005, 11:01 PM
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Watched Notebook Sunday night. Good movie tho probably classified as a "girl" movie although my hubby liked it too. Not his usual action type but, hey, he has a sensitive side too!! wink.gif


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MDF3530 
  Posted: 23-Feb-2005, 01:06 AM
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I rented "Troy" this weekend. I saw it in the theater and wanted to see it again. Very good again.

I noticed that they had a couple of ex-professional wrestlers in minor parts. The big galoot that Brad Pitt kills in the opening scene is Nathan Jones, who worked for the WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) for about six months before quitting about 18 months ago. The other one, Tyler Mane, who played Ajax, wrestled back in the early 1990s. He is better known to moviegoers and comic book fans as Sabretooth in "X-Men".

One thing I remember hearing about "Troy" when it was released in the theaters was they had an open casting call for the role of Helen. Rumors had it that both Nicole Kidman and Cameron Diaz were interested in playing Helen. I think they made the right decision casting a young newcomer.
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Moon Child 
Posted: 25-Feb-2005, 03:16 AM
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I watched Mona Lisa Smile a couple of days ago but I have to watch it again. My brother called me from BC right in the middle of it so I missed quite a bit! phone1.gif
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Rindy 
Posted: 25-Feb-2005, 07:24 PM
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My Son was watching Planes Trains and Auto Mobiles with Steve Martin and John Candy, I forgot how funny that is...

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Irish Stepper 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 02:27 AM
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I finally got to watch Braveheart the other day. biggrin.gif


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Lil 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 10:41 AM
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Did you like it, Irish?
I enjoyed it very much, and Rob Roy is also a favorite!

Has anyone seen King Arthur and what did you think of it?

Lil
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JaneyMae 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 11:01 AM
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Saw The Notebook and cried my wee eyes out......when it was over my husband reached over and took my hand saying, "I love you." I really wailed then! crybaby.gif


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Siobhan Blues 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 01:59 PM
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QUOTE (MDF3530 @ 19-Feb-2005, 10:37 PM)
I went to see "Constantine", the new Keanu Reeves movie. Didn't like it, didn't hate it....It was kinda weird hearing Rachel Weisz without a British accent.

Oh, I should have checked here before I started a thread about 'Constantine' elsewhere!
I saw it Saturday night and was fascinated by it - the angel wings are stunning, and the other special effects are jaw-droppingly good too. I liked Keanu as the demon-hunter and like you I missed Rachel's accent.
But I don't usually watch movies as violent as this one is, and towards the end when Constantine has that encounter with the shard of glass... wellll, I hate to admit this but I started to black out! Saw stars, ears started ringing, broke out in a cold sweat, and was holding onto my hubby's arm so hard I left gouge marks. He literally had to help me out to the car when it was all over. I missed the end of the movie, but at least I didn't fall out in the floor in a faint. How embarrassing that would have been!

No more scary movies for me.

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catlynelizabeth 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 02:04 PM
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I saw King Arthur and I really liked it. Clive Owens did a fantastic job as Arthur. It was a lot more bloody than the fairy tale versions have all been but it was not too bloody. I've only seen the uncut unrated version but it wasn't really bad in the sense of language or violence. The story is amazing and the costumes are incredible in that each has their own unique style. The same can be said about the fighting style of each of the knights. The traditional love story doesn't really exist except maybe in some envy on Lancelots part, but this doesn't take away from the story. I also liked the idea of making Guinevere a kick ass warrior celt instead of the weak willed princess type that she normally is.


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Haldur 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 03:13 PM
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Watched "Waking Ned Devine" yesterday...exceptionally well-written movie and some beautiful music to boot! Gonna watch it again tonight! wink.gif


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Rindy 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 07:34 PM
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QUOTE (Lil @ 01-Mar-2005, 08:41 AM)
Did you like it, Irish?
I enjoyed it very much, and Rob Roy is also a favorite!

Has anyone seen King Arthur and what did you think of it?

Lil

lil- Braveheart is the MOVIE! I loved it also. I liked Arthur real well. I read the book before I saw the movie and it was pretty close. I loved the part on the ice. Hope you liked it.

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Lil 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 10:41 PM
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QUOTE (Rindy1202 @ 01-Mar-2005, 07:34 PM)
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lil- Braveheart is the MOVIE! I loved it also.  I liked Arthur real well.  I read the book before I saw the movie and it was pretty close.  I loved the part on the ice.  Hope you liked it. 

Slainte
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I did love it, I agree that I liked Guenivere much better as a warrior princess and not a wuss.

Clive did a great job and Ioan was very good also, of course we have liked him since "Titanic" and as "Horatio Hornblower".

I didn't have as hard a time with the story as I thought I might, having read the other version all my life, I found that I was ready for and much happier with a more "grown up" version of the story.

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Keltic 
Posted: 01-Mar-2005, 11:25 PM
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Watched the movie "Saw" on Saturday night. I don't care what Ebert and Roeper said, I thought it was good. Warning...not for the squeamish.


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