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Topic: What disc did you have in last (and what did you think)? Post ReplyPost New Topic
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John Byrne
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Joined: 11 May 2005
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Posted: 22 October 2017 at 6:25pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

DRACULA, PRINCE OF DARKNESS (1966)

Hammer horror on TCM. Like visiting old friends.

Plus, with Andrew Keir and Barbara Shelley, this one has 2/3rds of the leads from QUATERMASS AND THE PIT.

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James Woodcock
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Posted: 23 October 2017 at 5:19am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

ARRIVAL on Netflix Canada. First things first. Wow, Canada has a way better selection than we get in the UK. Stuff on here that we just donít get over there. Iím currently downloading all sorts of stuff to watch in the next month. Iíll have to go off line so it doesnít know where I am but thatís OK.

Anyway, on to arrival. Spoilers ahead




 There are a lot of cinematic themes here that are explored in Blade Runner 2049 - long shots, the importance of scene, sound. I liked it.

Reading the thread there was a lot of discussion about how did the Adams character help the heptopods in the future. I think her main point was to start a ball rolling that would mean humans could help in the future. The heptopods, being able to see time in non-linear fashion, knew that that ball was needed now to be ready then. She herself, is not the help then, but her actions now, enable then.

I liked how time was played, especially the learn now from info then and the slow release of when was also enjoyable. Granted I figured the time shift out early, but Iím suspicious of these things when I see non-linear narrative.

Enjoyed it
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John Byrne
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Posted: 23 October 2017 at 7:35am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

I can't even give ARRIVAL a look, predicated as it is on the notion that an alien language is like a code, and as such is something cryptographers can decipher.
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 23 October 2017 at 7:58am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

The 1958 version of Dracula (a.k.a Horror of Dracula). For me, Hammer's finest hour (and a half). James Bernard's score is perfectly horrible, Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing are not really much like the characters from the book, but somehow seem right anyway. The broad structure comes from the book, but is pared down to the bones so much that they never leave mainland Europe! Gothic horror was never better. There's a shot of Christopher Lee striding off across the castle courtyard into the night that is really stunning, his cape flowing behind him, accompanied by a really nasty orchestral sting that makes the shot properly scary.

Edited by Peter Martin on 23 October 2017 at 8:01am
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 23 October 2017 at 8:22am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

I also like the ending of the 1958 version of DRACULA. Really gripping and horrific stuff.

I prefer Universal Studios' version of FRANKENSTEIN to Hammer, but I prefer Hammer's version of DRACULA to Universal (I have tried to watch the Bela Lugosi film three times - and I have, but have found no satisfaction, sadly).
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 23 October 2017 at 2:15pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply


SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING (2017)

A much-needed breath of fresh air, after the abysmal SPIDER-MAN 3; the admirable-but-oddly-boring AMAZING SPIDER-MAN; and the slightly-more-enjoyable, but ultimately-ridiculous AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2.

Lots of fun, with a great score and killer song-selection on the soundtrack, too!



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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 23 October 2017 at 3:33pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I COME IN PEACE (1990)

Released in the UK as DARK ANGEL, this film stars Dolph Lundgren as a vice cop, Jack Caine, in Houston who, whilst working a drugs case, comes across an extraterrestrial drug dealer removing people's brains. Paired up with a by-the-book FBI agent, Caine is caught between a druglord's henchmen and the alien drug dealer.

I watch this once every five years or so. It's a lot of fun. True, the tropes are all here: the rule-breaking cop teaming up with the by-the-book federal agent, the corruption in high places, etc. But it's all good fun and is eventful throughout. 

It's a buddy cop movie in one sense, but with the added twist that the main bad guy is an alien drug dealer!

On Blu-ray, I'd certainly recommend checking it out. 


Edited by Robbie Parry on 23 October 2017 at 3:33pm
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James Woodcock
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Posted: 23 October 2017 at 6:56pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

I remember really liking the gun in Dark Angel when I watched it lo those many moons ago

Edited by James Woodcock on 23 October 2017 at 6:56pm
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 24 October 2017 at 7:35am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

By the way, pedantic, but in the film, set in Houston, the cops are wearing dark blue uniforms. But later in the film, during a gunfight, a cop pulls up in a uniform that includes a white shirt. 

You Americans and your law enforcement, eh? ;-) Can't keep up with all the city cops, county sheriffs, state troopers, federal police, etc. I even found out that the FBI has its own police force recently.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 24 October 2017 at 4:45pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

PITCH BLACK (2000)

Still holds up, in large part due to an old horror movie trick: show the monsters only sparingly.

Too bad the sequels forgot they were supposed to be doing ALIEN and instead tried to be DUNE.

(I watched the Extended Director's Cut, on Blu, so there were lots of moments I did not remember. Some of those might just have been because I had not watched the film in about a decade, but one in particular struck a chord, as I think it would have had it been there originally. Riddick is talking about God with the Imam character, who assumes Riddick to be an unbeliever. Riddick responds by describing the horrible life he has led, and saying "Sure, I believe in God. And I hate him.")

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Jack Bohn
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Posted: 25 October 2017 at 9:12am | IP Logged | 11 post reply

I give the Riddick sequel credit for not being PITCH BLACK II: PITCH BLACKER. I may have gotten the wrong idea from THE CHRONICLES OF RIDDICK, but I thought it ended on a wonderfully terrible tragic note that left no room for sequels... maybe only fill-inquels set before that ending. I haven't rewatched the movie because, if I am wrong, I prefer the story in my head.
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 25 October 2017 at 4:49pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply


John Carpenter's THE THING (1982)

As I get older, it seems like some of the plot contrivances stick out a little more, and maybe there's a clunky line or two, but really, it's just so good, and so much fun to watch (even the gross parts!).

I've watched this steadily over the years, since its cable debut (1983, I'm guessing?), when I was probably a little too young to be watching it in the first place, but I can honestly say I never get tired of it.



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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 25 October 2017 at 8:04pm | IP Logged | 13 post reply


Followed by:

Mel Brooks' DRACULA: DEAD AND LOVING IT (1995)

My 13-year old daughter, bless her, has been on a Mel Brooks kick pretty much all year long, and we've been going through most of his films so far (as of today, she hasn't seen THE PRODUCERS yet, and I'm holding off a couple more years on BLAZING SADDLES and HISTORY OF THE WORLD, PART I)...

The good news, to start, is that DRACULA isn't nearly as heinous as I'd remembered... I recall renting it once, back in the '90s, and hating it, but this time, I guess I was in a more agreeable mood, as I found myself chuckling a lot more than I expected to.

However, it's still far from great.  The film looks fantastic, and does an admirable job of emulating and riffing on the various past film versions of the Count, from Bela Legosi, the Christopher Lee/Hammer films, the 1979 Frank Langella version (I think they even used some of John Williams' DRACULA 1979 score in this one's trailer!), and of course, the Francis Ford Coppola film from '92... but the jokes, for the most part, tend not to land--there were very rare (if any) instances of laugh-out-loud moments.

(But I will say that Steven Weber and Peter MacNicol kept me smiling throughout... if there are any MVPs in this film, it's them.)

Knowing my daughter, she'll want to watch this one again!





Edited by Shaun Barry on 25 October 2017 at 9:34pm
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Richard White
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Posted: 26 October 2017 at 3:03pm | IP Logged | 14 post reply

Just watched The Thing myself, Arrow Films' 4K Blu-ray no less.

Scanned from the camera negatives, the print is quite stunning, perhaps even more so for someone like me who's been watching this one since the pan and scan VHS days.

The film itself holds up wonderfully, as do Rob Botin's creature effects and the beautiful matte paintings.

I wrote about The Thing when doing my dissertation for my film degree, so I it holds a special place in my heart!
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Greg Kirkman
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Posted: 26 October 2017 at 4:29pm | IP Logged | 15 post reply

I wonder how the Arrow release stacks up against last year's Shout! Factory Blu-Ray, which also had a new transfer, and some great new features, including the "edited for TV" version of the movie, presented in its entirety.
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 26 October 2017 at 8:12pm | IP Logged | 16 post reply

Love Carpenter's The Thing. First saw it on TV in either 1985 or 1986, when -- like you Shaun -- I was a little on the young side to be watching such fare. Amazing atmosphere, effectively minimalist score, quality ensemble, decent characters, brilliant effects. Great film. 
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 26 October 2017 at 8:42pm | IP Logged | 17 post reply


One thing I never noticed before, while looking over the cover art of the Shout! Factory blu-ray, is that there are 12 main characters in THE THING '82.

Which made me chuckle:  This could be seen as a paranoid sci-fi horror version of 12 ANGRY MEN!



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Richard White
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Posted: 27 October 2017 at 6:03am | IP Logged | 18 post reply

From what I've read the Arrow release has a better scan of the print and superior encoding.

Arrow tend to work on the elements themselves, usually under the supervision of the excellent James White.
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David Miller
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Posted: 27 October 2017 at 9:09am | IP Logged | 19 post reply

I saw THE THING when I was nine and it was newly released on VHS. I ran screaming from the room when the guy's head tore itself off, grew legs and skittered across the floor. What an amazing film. 

My parents, mom especially, were horror fans. Looking back on the trauma they serially inflicted on me and my sisters, I sometimes wonder why we didn't see THE THING in a theater. 
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Robbie Parry
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Posted: 27 October 2017 at 12:55pm | IP Logged | 20 post reply

I've never seen it, but my brother has the Blu-ray so I shall watch it.

All I remember in 1982 is being disappointed - seriously - that it wasn't a Benjamin Grimm thing.

Mind you, if you want to see Grimm's Thing, then check out the monster in the 1962 sci-fi film HANDS OF DEATH. ;-) 

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John Popa
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Posted: 27 October 2017 at 1:44pm | IP Logged | 21 post reply

I saw "The Thing" on HBO back when a movie debuting on HBO was a big deal. I would have been 10 or so - loved it! The head sprouting legs and scampering away was pretty unnerving for sure, though.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 October 2017 at 5:05pm | IP Logged | 22 post reply

CONEHEADS (1993)

It remains entertaining. Clever, with a surprising amount of heart. Slipping in music from THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL at emotional moments doesn't hurt!

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Brian Hague
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Posted: 29 October 2017 at 6:48pm | IP Logged | 23 post reply

"Doom was always in his his grasp!" Too funny, Robbie!

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John Byrne
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Posted: 29 October 2017 at 7:51pm | IP Logged | 24 post reply

DRINK THE BLOOD OF DRACULA (1970)

On TCM. Hey! Remember when they used to show OLD movies? Like, 40 or 50 years...........

Oh. Never mind.

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Peter Martin
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Posted: 30 October 2017 at 7:39am | IP Logged | 25 post reply

JB, Back to the Future is on TCM today. Aaaargh!!! Good old 1985.

[ And I know you were talking about Taste the Blood of Dracula :) ]


Edited by Peter Martin on 30 October 2017 at 7:41am
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