Over/Under-rated movies: the redux

Since we’re re-creating well worn topics, I’m restarting this party.

Watched Kubo and the Two Strings tonight. It was sad, beautiful and funny. I give it an under-rated as this should’ve won the Oscar.


Hardcore Henry was every bit deserving of the hype. Buy it on DVD and support indie filmmakers. You can check out the trailer on Youtube and the full shebang is at usual pirate portals (like solarmoviez.to)


I should probably watch it again. I’m still not enirely sure what to make of it. Not sure if brilliant, or if the non-stop action was there to cover up stupid.

It was hard to tell with Fury Road, too, but upon 3rd viewing, the consensus at the Kidd house was “brilliant.”


Hardcore Henry feels like a John Carpenter film if John had co-directed with Beatdownboogie’s Micah.


Have you seen Coraline? Same company.


LOVE Coraline the movie, even more than the book.


me too! Read the book after and was disappointed. That doesn’t happen much.


Same here; the book was so ‘bare bones’, really more like an outline than a full narrative, and that’s definitely not typical for Gaiman.


Kubo actually hit me harder in the feels. From the opening scene, there was much sawdust.


My favourite underrated film at the moment:

The visuals are absolutely jaw-dropping. The story is easy to follow, but raises more questions with every viewing.

The temporal setting is right before WWI, right before the whole world gets in uniform and never quite gets out again.

And it’s funny, because I’m certainly not old enough to remember 1913, but there’s nostalgia and a lot of other feelings going on, every time. I think it’s because the story pulls so much from myths and fairy tales.


I know I said this at The Other Place, but my daughter likes to call it Coraline and the Two Buttons.

One button is for her family, and the other button is for her other family.


I humbly submit the Postman (1997)

It is as subtle as a dump truck, but I love it anyway.


I enjoyed the book but I generally nope out of Mr Wooden’s cinematic performances (although he was good in 3000 Miles to Graceland)

I will submit Bladerunner as a steaming pile of shit.

I’ll admit it looks fantastic, and the moody soundtrack fits it perfectly but the acting from Harrison Ford is atrocious (he so clearly doesn’t want to be there) and the plot is mangled almost beyond recognition with the best bits cut out - where was Mercer vs Buster Friendly, or the parallel society set up by the replicants, or the deep philosophical question of what it means to be human?

It’s a sci fi film so bad not even Rutger Hauer could save it.


This seems to be one of those films where it’s better to read the book after. That’s what I did, and it let’s me appreciate them as separate entities. Because yeah, not really a “book” film.

The director’s cut(s) keep the “what’s a human” theme at least.


Yeah, but even then they got it wrong. The whole point of the book is that Dekard is not a replicant. His problem is that he empathises with them, but that very thing precludes him from being one, because they can’t empathise.

Although I liked how it played out in the computer game, because you were never sure, which felt very Dickian.


Thank you. I watched it the first time and went oh is that it. Tried it a second time still disapointed.
Someone take it off the pedastel.


If we’re being honest here:
I love the film.
I don’t really like the soundtrack.
Indeed, years ago I started a project to re-score the whole thing. I’m sure I’ll get back to that any day now in my copious free time.


The film doesn’t have to match the book in every detail. Whether this or that story decision was effective is of course ripe for critique, but “it’s not the same as the book” is on its face not a sign of failure.

In Shakespeare’s version of Romeo and Juliet, Romeo is dead by the time Juliet wakes up, if only by a few seconds. There’s a version of the older source story where Juliet wakes up before Romeo is dead but after he’s taken the poison – he gets to see she’s not really dead but can’t do anything to prevent his own death. It’s not how old Will wrote it, but the dramatic effect is considered superior, so that’s how most productions play it.

I always find it interesting that culturally Shakespeare’s plays are open to, even celebrated for, all sorts of experimentation, but adaptations (adaptations!) of more recent works have more constraints.


Yeah, and I get that, but it feels like he read the blurb on the back, skimmed the plot and lifted some names from it and did a half-assed job of stitching it together.

But my biggest gripe is that the main acting is terrible. Harrison Ford so clearly does not want to be there and is phoning it in long distance. I think people forgive it a lot because of the source material, but the film itself is average at best.


And see, I love the disaffection. Remember how numb he is about the daily indignites, like having to wear a lead codpiece? Dick protagonists tend to be checked out. That’s why Keanu Reeves is so perfect in Scanner Darkly.

And since the film wants it to be ambiguous who’s a replicant and who’s not (I’ve even seen it argued that every speaking part is supposed to be a replicant), that makes sense. Whether it appeals to each individual viewer is something else again.