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10th Anniversary:The Kids Are All Right

"Movies like this together with20th Century Womanare my reason why I'm so in love with Cinema in the first place " -martin

"Julianne Moore’s “Marriage is hard...” speech toward the end of the film is one of my favorite monologues of all time. The writing, the delivery. It’s perfect."-RV


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Aug 02 2020

What did you see this week?

Time has lost all meaning. What is aweekend?How long will the vestiges of taking stock of the last "work week" or weekend of new movies on a Sunday last only because that's when we used to take stock of things in the pre-pandemic world? At any rate... how is your movie or TV watching these days? Tell us in the comments, won'cha? I'll share two of my own screening adventures after the jump...

This week, in need of comfort I watched a handful of episodes ofThe Dick Van Dyke Showon Hulu (1961-1967) which I'd never seen before. It'ssofunny so the 'classic' status is deserved. Mary Tyler Moore is a charming young treasure and Van Dyke does expert slapstick. It's fascinating to see the tropes of the marital AND the family AND the workplace sitcoms all experiencing their embryonic and/or toddler phases simultaneously (I Love LucyandLeave it To Beaverpreceded this).

The way Merle Oberon looks at Gary Cooper. Same, Merle, same.

For movies I'd already finished2005 screeningsso I'm on to1938(which will be the September smackdown). I screened both Adventures of Robin Hood(which, more on later) on HBO Max andThe Cowboy and the Lady(which I'd never heard of) on Amazon Prime.

The latter is a romantic comedy starring Gary Cooper and Merle Oberon as the titular couple and it was up for three Oscars (score, original song, and an Oscar win for sound recording). Today's critics, obsessed as they are with 2020 points of view and unable to adjust when looking at earlier art, would be horrified at the normcore sexism and blatant deceit upon which the romance is based (Oberon continually lies to Cooper to win his heart and this is viewed primarily for comedy, at least at first) but it's a decent romantic comedy and sexy, too. The always breathtakingly handsome Cooper is quite funny in a chill way and Merle is... well, she sure is beautiful! 1930s screen kissing can be hit and miss given that faces just press together but Oberon and Cooper have good chemistry.

The film was shot by the masterfulGregg Tolandand I only wish this were a good print since his cinematography is usually stunning. There's one surprisingly suggestive scene in the fog; these two badly want to get naked. It was probably ravishing to look at in 1938!

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Reader Comments (35)

I watched Boys State, the new documentary about teenage boys in Texas building a representative government from the ground up. For me the villain was a young Republican (naturally). It's good though, and might very well be a Best Documentary nominee for this year. We shall see...

Also rewatched for probably the 10th time The Talented Mr. Ripley (so amazing), The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (a pretty good noirish Barbara Stanwyck flick from 1946) and A Night to Remember ('58), the very best of the three Titanic movies, so beautifully made and very moving. Finally, nearing the end of S2 of Pose and marveling at Billy Porter's amazing charisma. The show itself has its flaws (basically none of the characters ever seem to move beyond their templated personalities so you're never surprised by anything they do or say) - but Porter is undeniable.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterRob

I watched Gaslight and Sudden Fear for the first time and rewatched The Kids Are All Right after the 10th anniversary post on TFE reminded me of how much I'd liked it when it first came out.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterCarlos

Yesterday was Barbara Stanwyck day on Summer Under the Stars on TCM, and my DVR was ready. Of the films I've watched so far, my favorite was Crime of Passion, a noir where Barbara plays a woman who will do anything to further her husband's career, co-starring Sterling Hayden and Raymond Burr.

除了rewatch of Mean Girls, the best thing I watched this week was Carmen Comes Home on Criterion Channel. Hideko Takamine, one of my favorites, plays an exotic dancer living in Tokyo who returns to her small town for a visit and causes scandal. It's funny and charming without being obnoxiously dated, and Takamine is such a joy.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commenterjules

Although he wasn’t really known for his comedy, I always loved Gary Cooper best in his funny, goofier roles. Ball of Fire, Bluebeard’s Eighth Wife, Design for Living, etc.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterBradley

Still catching up on some 1991 retrospective screenings, including Raise the Red Lantern (for the first time - loved it!) and JFK (possibly for the first time in its entirety - liked it).

Also started on 2005 with some smackdown and non-smackdown Oscar titles: Crash (which I remembered liking but not loving in 2005 - what was I thinking though, this is more problematic now than ever), Munich (which I couldn’t remember at all, and now I know why: it’s not very memorable), Constant Gardener (still like it, but not as much as I remembered), and Brokeback Mountain (still a masterpiece!).

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterDrG

I bought a few 90s teen movies on a whim the other day and have been diving deep into their comfort food vibes: Jawbreaker and Drop Dead Gorgeous first. Next, Dick. 1999 was a great year. Maybe I'll cap it off with my favorite, Romy and Michelle.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterHans

I've been binge-watching Friends and What We Do in the Shadows. At this point, they are comfort food that I just cannot get enough of.

Movie-wise, I'm a little behind with the times so I'm just getting around to 1991. I revisitedThelma and Louise,The Silence of the Lambs,Frankie and Johnny, andBoyz N the Hood(for the first time and WOW). Too hard for me to pick between Sarandon, Davis, Foster, and Pfeiffer.

P.S. So strange to think of all the many roles Pfeiffer turned down that would eventually be Oscar nominated or statued. Would she have won if she had taken on Clarice Starling or even Celeste Boyle? For the latter, she would have had the benefit of being considered snubbed the previous year forWhite Oleanderso that might have propelled her over Zellweger towards the podium. (OK, I obviously have too much time on my hands to overthink what-if scenarios)

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterBVR

Nothing. Movie theaters still closed.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterMarty

I'm hooked on "Slasher" on Netflix- Season 3 was very sexy but a bit too gory for my tastes- I actually had to cover my eyes. I'm on Season 2 now- it's like American Horror Story but with a psycho killer as the main villain in each season

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterJaragon

End of Days Schwarzenegger,Batman and Robin Uma Thurman,Riviera Series 2 Lena Olin,Metro Eddie Murphy and Phase IV Nigel Davenport.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

I had first time viewings of The Bride of Frankenstein and After Hours, both in 35mm. TBOF was fun, but so many scenes were ruined by Young Frankenstein. After Hours was a wonderful surprise - I didn't know Scorsese had something that crazy in him. And there was a special delight in getting a new actress every half hour. TERI GARR?!?!?! CATHERINE OHARA??!??!? I almost clapped in delight both times.

Rewatched Mission Impossible - really fun noticing how much Vanessa Kirby channeled Vanessa Redgrave in Fallout, since she's playing her daughter.

Also rewatched A Star is Born (1954) - Judy really gives one of the best performances I've ever seen in a film. Incredible work. (Note - don't watch this on VUDU. It's a 2.55 cinemascope film and it's being displayed in 1.85. Thankfully, I've seen it a couple times, but the amount of image that got cut off was ridiculous)

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commenterchasm301

I saw The Painted Bird. Well that's 3 hours (ok 2 hours and 49 minutes) of my life I'll never get back. Who were the dolts who walked out on it? Were they paid by the distributor to stir up a "controversy"? Because this is the most boring movie I've seen in a long, long while. And those atrocities - nothing anyone who's seen the average Nicolas Cage or Liam Neeson film couldn't handle, not to mention the bloodbaths coming from the Far East. Even the eye-gouging was relatively restrained. The photography is tremendous (and we all go to movies to look at the cinematography, right?) and the little kid was very impressive. I wouldn't call it acting, exactly, but he brings just the right quality to the role. That's it for the positives. A bore is a bore is a bore, a pretentious bore is a pretentious bore is a pretentious bore and an ultra-pretentious bore is The Painted Bird.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commenterken s

I watched Possession from 1981... gee that is something. I’d somehow lived my life so far without having seen a film starring Isabelle Adjani.

I also watched Little Joe. Unintentionally 2 Cannes best actress winners in one weekend.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterChoog

Pfeiffer was up for Celeste in Mystic River,trivia I didn't know.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

A re-watch ofNatural Born Killerswhich I think is the last great film Oliver Stone has ever made.Any Given Sundayfor me is the last time Oliver Stone made a film that is re-watchable and enjoyable. Everything else after that is just shit and he just needs to fucking go. He's done.

First-timers I saw areHobbs & Shaw(which is awesome) and just now,Satan's Brewby Rainer Werner Fassbinder which is good but really a minor Fassbinder film based on what I've seen from him so far.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commenterthevoid99

LOVE The Dick Van Dyke Show — The Mary Tyler & Bob Newhart Shows too!

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterDusty

I've been enjoying some Lenzi giallo movies that star Carroll Baker:

- So Sweet.. So Perverse: JL Trintignant was always fun in this era

- Orgasmo (aka Paranoia): rated X but in that 1969 way that would barely be an R rating now. X for incest and lesbian themes. Lots of J&B!

also 2 that Nick Davis had recommended or reviewed earlier this year:

——孔(1998)蔡电影关于一个男人和woman in Taiwan suffering an endless rainstorm during an epidemic and a hole that opens up between their apts. The slowness is interrupted every 15 minutes by pop musical numbers. Great covid cinema.

- 8 1/2 Women- very Greenaway movie about man and his grieving widow father who open up their mansion to lots of naked women. including a very naked Toni Collette.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterSFOTroy

Finally watched LAST CHRISTMAS which I actually really enjoyed. Clarke and Golding have so much charisma! Also rewatched POKÉMON: DETECTIVE PIKACHU which I think still held up well for me. Plus, saw THE RENTAL at the drive-in theater. I found it okay since I had higher hopes for it in terms of the fear factor and the reviews. While it was cool to see a new movie, it was hard to make out some dark/foggy scenes and read the text messages displayed on the cell phones on the screen from the distance of my car.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterGeorge P.

Carlos -- omg what an amazing triple feature. you had a good weekend!

SFOTroy -- 8 1/2 women. omg. haven't thought of that one in years but i saw it IN THEATERS

thevoid -- that is a really good question. what did happen to Oliver Stone's talent?

chasm -- i'm glad i'm not the only one who knows this about Judy's performance!

August 2, 2020 |Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R

When we watch a movie that we absolutely love, isn't that also "x" amount of minutes of our life we'll never get back? Do I get some sort of time travel refund for watching PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE a year ago, because it's about time (no pun intended) I cash that in! I've never understood the machinations of that phrase. :-)

Anyway...... cinemas are open here (albeit limited, but roll on TENET for the end of the month!). I watched:

精神错乱(一个不舒服的追溯到80年代90 thrillers. It's not bad, but the elements of nasty violence and funny violence melded together like water and screwdrivers. And Crowe's character is certainly no Alex Forrest or Max Cady...),

- 23 WALKS (not as connected to movies like WEEKEND and the BEFORE... trilogy as the promotion material and title had led me to believe, but still quite a nice ode to elder romance),

- MY DAYS OF GLORY (a solid French comedy film about not dealing with depression - a lot of parallels with BRIDESMAIDS) and

- THE VIGIL (my first delve into the subgenre of "Jewish religious horror", I believe. Not perfect, but a decent first feature for the writer-director.)

My television comfort food for the moment is "Letterkenny". I can't believe how much I haven't heard about this wonderfully funny series around the websites I regularly read (including this one) - for me it's the funniest series of the past decade, and ever since I accidentally stumbled across it about a year ago, I have been getting friends hooked as well!

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterTravis C

@Nathaniel: I was totally thinking the same thing! That is one great lineup of movies, Carlos!

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterRob

We started to watch WATCHMEN (the first six episodes) and then Bollywood romcom Tanu Weds Manu (2011) by Aanand L. Rai starring Kangana Ranaut, the Queen of Hindi Cinema

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterMirko

I wanted something totally mindless so I watched 1964's 'Where Love Has Gone' for the first time.
Was NOT disappointed on this trashy steal of the Lana Turner/Johnny Stompanato/CherylCrane murder scandal. So awesomely awful that I am writing a blog post on the big hair/bad acting sleazy soap with Bette Davis, Susan Hayward, AND Joey Heatherton!

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commenterrick gould

I started binging "30 Rock" for my first viewing, and it is LOL funny sometimes.

Re -- Watched "Dressed to Kill" for some DePalma, and "Stella Dallas" for some Stanwyck, and one of the few Barbra Streisand films that I had NOT seen "The Owl and the Pussycat". She is very LOUD in it, and it was intermittently entertaining.

Finished Season 3 of "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" and finishing Season 15 (!) of "ER". It was time for that show to end!

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commenterforever1267

通过雨伞Academy. A little more than half through the second season right now. It's...WOW, it's not quite as obnoxious as, say, Suicide Squad, but it's definitely something that could use less songs and more score.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Scarface for the first time! Quite good but does not hold a candle to Scorsese’s mobs.
Gangs of NY which is quite boring
Unorthodox which I do not really like
Avatar TLA the masterpiece

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterFadhil

Laura Petrie / Beth Jarrett. Pretty amazing!

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterJimmy

Decided to watch Crash for the first time in 15 years to get in the 2005 mood for the Smackdown and now I want to burn down things. I want violence. We should have taken the streets.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

You can't do much better than the original Dick Van Dyke show. DVD and MTM had the an amazing chemistry together, loose, charming and sexy. But the show isn't reliant on just them. Rose Marie, Morey Amsterdam, Ann Morgan Gilbert, Jerry Paris and Richard Deacon all contributed diamond moments throughout the series as did Carl Reiner whenever he popped up as the egocentric Alan Brady. Just golden stuff.

I watched a film I'd wanted to see for years but put off because I knew it would be depressing-Kes. It was but it was also tremendous and affecting.

I also watched the feature film based on the series Peter Gunn simply called Gunn. It was very much of its time but thanks to Blake Edwards direction and a good cast a nice breezy actiony flick.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered Commenterjoel6

我也观看了Sid,南希(1986)第一time. Really liked it. Oldman is great and it's beautifully shot (early Roger Deakins).

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterPeggy Sue

Also took advantage of TCM stars of the month programming and watched Crime of Passion and Pillow Talk

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterTom G.

Watched In Pursuit of Darkness - a 4+ hour documentary about horror movies from the 80s. If you are a fan of the genre, it's pretty interesting and has quite the collection of horror icons. If not a fan of horror... umm... probably not something you want to watch.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterPoliVamp

Finally saw UNORTHODOX, which I thought was very good though not without flaws...but hot damn, y'all were not kidding about Shira Haas. I know she's a long shot for the Emmy (especially running against Cate Blanchett and Regina King), but not impossible if all the voters actually watch her performance...and she'd deserve it.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterLynn Lee

OK-- now i'm pouring out and glass and closing out the weekend with "The Heiress".
You know why.

August 2, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterSFOTroy

We saw Ad Astra last night. I have many thoughts.

August 3, 2020 |Unregistered CommenterDeborah Lipp