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  #21  
Old 03-14-2007, 06:07 PM
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I'm just amused by the assertion that Bond is deep, but Casino Royale was just another action movie. Bond deep? Casino Royale had more characterisation than the other twenty movies put together. You've got real drama, real motivations, real pathos. The other movies, and I do love them to death, had... gadgets? Half naked chicks? There's definitely a charm there, but I'd hardly call it "deep".

Just another action movie? No, I think most of the previous Bond movies were generic action movies. This one actually had some substance. To each his own I guess, but arguing against a 94% fresh rating is even crazier than arguing against a 33% approval rating.
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Old 03-14-2007, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by ijdgaf View Post
And I hate to bring back old examples, but Batman Begins and Casino Royale are case and point, respectively.
Batman Begins? Huh. And there was I thinking that BB was the most criminal waste of talent ever to be commited to film by a Hollywood studio. Just goes to show what I know.
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  #23  
Old 03-14-2007, 08:32 PM
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"Focused on profitability" and "expanding the fanbase" are mutually exclusive. "Focused on profitability" means selling the most tickets NOW. It means releasing cheaper (and hence more sellable) DVDs NOW. It means all sorts of things. "Expanding the fanbase" means having people associate more with the idea of "Star Trek" than Kirk, Spock, and the Enterprise. It means having everybody care about the characters. It means having people believe in Roddenberry's vision again. And in this instance they'd actually make more money IN THE LONG RUN.

Oh, and I liked Batman Begins. Unlike some other Batman movies, I daresay that there was the lowest ratio of wasted screentime to real screentime ever for a Batman movie. The number of loose ends was minimal, especially for a Batman movie.
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Old 03-14-2007, 11:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Infinite Improbability View Post
"Focused on profitability" and "expanding the fanbase" are mutually exclusive. "Focused on profitability" means selling the most tickets NOW. It means releasing cheaper (and hence more sellable) DVDs NOW. It means all sorts of things.
Huh? That's not even a half truth. Hasn't the poor box office demonstrated by the crappier entries in the latest comic book movie trend shown that the public isn't really that interested in rehash after rehash? Or what about the decreasing viability of Adam Sandler/ Rob Schneider comedy vehicles? People are sick of crap films, and they don't really shell out the bucks for them anymore. Exceptions? Sure. But whatever the hell you're talking about would get you flunked out of Marketing 101 faster than something humorously, metaphorically rapid.

Quote:
"Expanding the fanbase" means having people associate more with the idea of "Star Trek" than Kirk, Spock, and the Enterprise.
How is that now? What does that mean?

Quote:
It means having everybody care about the characters.
Everything I've read indicates the newest movie will be a character piece. Specifically, a Kirk and Spock vehicle.

Quote:
It means having people believe in Roddenberry's vision again.
Again, Abrams has talked all about how geeked out he is about bringing said vision to life again.

Quote:
And in this instance they'd actually make more money IN THE LONG RUN.
They will.

PHJ, I am thankful your insane Batman cinematic opinions are vastly outnumbered by counteropinions by critics and box-office contributors alike. Bring on The Dark Knight.
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  #25  
Old 03-15-2007, 04:38 AM
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Oh my, this parachute is a backpack!

Kudos for reference-spotters. I fold as far as this conversation is concerned. Defeat conceded.
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  #26  
Old 03-16-2007, 05:38 PM
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PHJ, I am thankful your insane Batman cinematic opinions are vastly outnumbered by counteropinions by critics and box-office contributors alike. Bring on The Dark Knight.
Oh, I see. Just because I wear a collander on my head and sometimes talk to myself, I'm insane, is that it? :P

I like what I like, and Batman Begins failed spectacularly in this regard, regardless of what every critic and his mother says.
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  #27  
Old 03-23-2007, 09:06 PM
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look at the success of neo-Doctor Who, which made a clean start without ignoring anything that came before.
Actually, they only ignored the bits which made the old series worth watching - like decent writing, dialogue and/or direction.

And if you've seen what the future holds with series 3, even you would vomit.

@Burt: Now you know how I feel towards Russell Touchwood Davies.

As for political parties and their promises, see also: Hilaire Belloc's famous poem:

"That Accurs'd Power that stands on Privilege
And goes with Women and Champagne and Bridge
Broke - and Democracy resumed her reign
(Which goes with Women, and Bridge, and Champagne)"

@others:

Focusing on profit means selling out the ideals and the core of the programme, and leaving the empty husk, adding in ephemeral crap that makes you want to puke, and shoving it in front of the chav unwashed masses who will lap it up because it's got shiny SFX and so much sap it's drowning the cast, coupled with celebrity writers who have no idea what they're doing with the show. You can't play to the fans and go solely for profit. You can balance both, or crash the show in five years at the outside when people get bored with it. And that applies universally.

Oh, and as a closing comment, the Great Gatsby is dreadful, and only mindblowing in how stupendously dull it is to read.
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  #28  
Old 03-23-2007, 11:48 PM
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According to that logic, The Chronicles of Riddick would have dominated the box office and ushered in a cinematic revolution.

It certainly sold out in terms of the property's core ideals. Pitch Black was a horror movie with decent but not overwhelming effects. A cult classic. The Chronicles of Riddick attempted to be Lord of the Rings in space. Huge, ambitious special effects. Designed to bring in new fans to the Riddick franchise by toning down the violence and making a gargantuan, hollow space epic with little in the way of involved plot and much in the way of over-the-top action and suspension of belief.

Instead, the movie crashed and burned at the box office. The planned trilogy was shelved, and nobody gives a damn about Riddick or the Necromongers or whatever the hell they were trying to push with that film.

One can take a pessimistic look and determine that the public only cares about pretty effects and absurdly epic action and doesn't give two spits about character, drama, or atmosphere. But from what I can tell, the trends have been the other way around lately. Huge, beautiful dumb movies like The Chronicles of Riddick have tanked, while character/actor-focused ventures with intimate drama like Casino Royale have set new records.

Edit: Then again, seeing as you loathe The Great Gatsby, I assume such inticracies as mood and tone (not to mention profoundly difficult-to-pull-off narrative techniques) don't really mean too much to you anyway.
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  #29  
Old 03-24-2007, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by ijdgaf View Post
According to that logic, The Chronicles of Riddick would have dominated the box office and ushered in a cinematic revolution.

It certainly sold out in terms of the property's core ideals. Pitch Black was a horror movie with decent but not overwhelming effects. A cult classic. The Chronicles of Riddick attempted to be Lord of the Rings in space. Huge, ambitious special effects. Designed to bring in new fans to the Riddick franchise by toning down the violence and making a gargantuan, hollow space epic with little in the way of involved plot and much in the way of over-the-top action and suspension of belief.

Instead, the movie crashed and burned at the box office. The planned trilogy was shelved, and nobody gives a damn about Riddick or the Necromongers or whatever the hell they were trying to push with that film.

One can take a pessimistic look and determine that the public only cares about pretty effects and absurdly epic action and doesn't give two spits about character, drama, or atmosphere. But from what I can tell, the trends have been the other way around lately. Huge, beautiful dumb movies like The Chronicles of Riddick have tanked, while character/actor-focused ventures with intimate drama like Casino Royale have set new records.
In the cinema, perhaps. I was referring more specifically to TV.
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Edit: Then again, seeing as you loathe The Great Gatsby, I assume such inticracies as mood and tone (not to mention profoundly difficult-to-pull-off narrative techniques) don't really mean too much to you anyway.
Thank you for your bitchy, and quite pointless comment. I can see exactly why intellectual debate has flourished as it has around here.

The Great Gatsby is written in a style which can only be described as monumentally bland. The characters are two-dimensional and soulless. The dialogue is empty. It lacks anything to draw you in. All you are reading is a plot synopsis of someone's rather boring life. Mood and tone do matter to me, and that is precisely why I hate this book - it's overrated trash that has almost none of either.
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  #30  
Old 03-24-2007, 11:39 PM
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Forgive me, I forgot to factor in taste. Unfortunately it seems we both have.

(Most of) the characters of The Great Gatsby are purposefully 2D and intentionally hollow. It's sort of a scathing critique of the Paris Hiltons and Lindsey Lohans of the 1920s (I hope Fitzgerald forgives me for that comparison).

I found the novel endlessly captivating and atmospheric, as have numerous critics for the better part of a century.

To each his own. Art will always be subjective. And self-proclaimed critics who attempt to slam said art will always be bitchy.
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  #31  
Old 03-25-2007, 01:59 AM
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Just swinging past to say that A. Yes, they made me read Gatsby and B. I'll admit "thought-provoking," but "captivating?" Ummm....
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  #32  
Old 04-07-2007, 07:56 PM
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So I saw Casino Royale for the first time a few days ago...

Ugh.
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  #33  
Old 04-07-2007, 09:46 PM
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What, precisely, is your problem with Casino Royale?

Gatac
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  #34  
Old 04-07-2007, 10:20 PM
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Are you sure you want to open those floodgates?

Well, to tiptoe into the water:

I miss Q and the gadgets.
I hated James Blondie's indifference on the "shaken versus stirred" thing.
I got lost in the construction area chase. Why was he chasing that guy?
James Bond almost dies because a WIRE GOT LOSE? What's up with that?
He actually told someone else about the secret tells he observed? That's just plain idiotic.
M actually sent an agent that she doesn't trust into the field just because he's the best poker player at MI6? Er, yeah...
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  #35  
Old 06-09-2007, 07:28 PM
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I just noticed that no one bothered to refute, support, or disparage my argument. Odd.
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  #36  
Old 06-11-2007, 10:24 AM
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Ha! Now you've jinxed it.

* I actually miss Q, too. But Desmond's dead, I didn't like Cleese doing it, and really, I think we should let that one go.

* Well, a habit has to start somewhere, doesn't it? According to the book, he gets to insist on the whole "Shaken not Stirred" thing precisely to prevent future poisonings.

* Because he's the terrorist Le Chiffre hired to blow up the airliner. When Bond took him down, he had to hire the other guy, but Bond was able to foil that by knowing a part of the plan Le Chiffre had prepared (the code to get past the security door). That ruins Le Chiffre's investment plan, and THAT kicks off the casino plot.

It's actually fairly straightforward if you pay attention to the scene before the chase, where Bond sees our parcour master receive the SMS with the password / code.

* Shit happens. I actually liked that touch - made it seem more like real gear and not the flawless gadgets we've become used to.

* He's confident that it won't come bite him in the ass. Only it does, once more establishing the central theme of the movie: Bond has to work to get things done. He's almost there on the "cool hyper-competence", but not quite. No more cakewalks.

* If M didn't trust Bond, she'd have him wash out. She's certainly not 100% behind him, but no matter the tongue-lashing she gives Bond about the chase, it's clear that it's more about the situation itself getting out of control than Bond's actions. He's merely the most convenient target for her anger, but really, MI6 screwed that one up with support personnel lacking in stealth and manpower. There wouldn't have been a chase if they'd sent more people to take the guy down.

M's complaints, though - that's like shouting at your cats for scratching your couch. It's what they do, to a certain extent. Bond had to catch parcour guy. He wanted to do it stealthy, the guy got spooked, Bond had to improvise and his first thought was to the mission, not the exposure.

As I said above in the chase scene, Bond does score one for the home team in getting the password - the way he does it isn't smooth, but it works. Bond in Casino Royale is much more about powering his way through obstacles, and that's exactly the refinement M wants to give him. That's where he'll grow. As for the poker playing, that's what we call a mission-critical skill. It's absolutely imperative that the agent they send can hold his own against Le Chiffre - you don't send your second-best man for that. The misgivings and reservations M still has don't detract from the fact that Bond is a damn good field agent by any measure, and it's silly to bench him for a screw-up that isn't even, strictly speaking, his fault.

Anything else?

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  #37  
Old 06-11-2007, 12:33 PM
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Good job. I might have simply replied to all with a different philosophy. Simply put, Casino Royale is a character piece (with a few huge action set pieces thrown in for good measure, sure). You can nitpick it if you want with your Trek-refined nerd ray. But you're sort of missing the point in the process. It's about watching the humble, flawed beginnings of a character. Somebody who's basically an archetype in the first twenty movies is actually given motivations and realistic direction to allow him to become (more or less) the character we all know and love.
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  #38  
Old 06-11-2007, 04:34 PM
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Hey, you can't slam Cleese. He only got one shot at doing a "real" Q. The first time he was R, still getting his bearings. In Die Another Day he was great, or at least as great as someone other than Desmond could do.

Q: You should be able to shoot through that in a couple of hours.
Bond: Only took a few seconds, Q.
Q: I wish I could make you Vanish.

My point is just that there HAS to be another poker player at MI6. Maybe only 90% of Bond's talent, but one who's better qualified and more trustworthy.

As for the defribulator pack, it was too complicated to trust to anyone who needs the thing to use. What, they can't just have a removable backing to reveal adhesive to stick the WHOLE THING onto your chest. Whap the Big Red Button (TM) and zap away.

I'm all for incompetancies as a 00 agent licensed to kill, but the tell thing should be part of the beginning course. Don't reveal secrets about your enemies to anyone other than direct superiors while a mission is underway. He could just say "I know his tell" and move on. What, Leitner wouldn't have trusted him to leave at that?
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  #39  
Old 06-11-2007, 08:55 PM
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I can slam Cleese all I want. It's our national sport!

*cough* Really, though. Don't like him as Q.

Better qualified? I shudder to think of the man at MI6 who's got more raw competence than 007. I don't think the "James Bond is a maverick, but he gets results, and that's why he does all the important stuff" theme is new to the movies.

Seeing how I don't know the intricacies of defibrillator construction, I'm perfectly fine pretending that the wires and pads are there for a reason.

Aw, come on. Does James Bond ever *not* brag? It was either that or a bad Poker-related pun/quip. Also, I'm relatively certain that the producers thought the concept of a "tell" might need more exposition. Now that I look at the scene, I could've done without it, but I didn't even notice until you mentioned it. So, eh.

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Old 06-11-2007, 09:04 PM
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I can slam Cleese all I want. It's our national sport!Gatac
Really?
Ok.
Just don't don't mention the war.
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