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Thread: 28 Film Discussion Threads Later

  1. #70076
    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    Pffft. Entertainment first. How it achieves Entertainment second.

    Or what I like to say: "leave your film school bs in film school"
    I don't know what that means. How can you separate a film's entertainment value from the manner in which it presents its narrative? How can one separate, for instance, the jokes in Buster Keaton's films from the staging, camera placement, and Keaton's performances? In Steamboat Bill, Jr., the camera frames the house falling on Keaton dead-on in extreme long shot because that's the best angle for us to see both the house falling and Keaton's lack of awareness of it falling; framed from any other angle, the joke wouldn't be as funny, if it survived at all. The action of a film doesn't exist independently of the manner in which it's presented to the spectator, since we can only know the what of a particular film through its form and style (i.e., the how).
    Just because...
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  2. #70077
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    Pffft. Entertainment first. How it achieves Entertainment second.

    Or what I like to say: "leave your film school bs in film school"
    Isn't the point of film criticism to discuss, "Why/how it is entertaining?"

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  3. #70078
    Replacing Luck Since 1984 Dukefrukem's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting baby doll (view post)
    I don't know what that means. How can you separate a film's entertainment value from the manner in which it presents its narrative? How can one separate, for instance, the jokes in Buster Keaton's films from the staging, camera placement, and Keaton's performances? In Steamboat Bill, Jr., the camera frames the house falling on Keaton dead-on in extreme long shot because that's the best angle for us to see both the house falling and Keaton's lack of awareness of it falling; framed from any other angle, the joke wouldn't be as funny, if it survived at all. The action of a film doesn't exist independently of the manner in which it's presented to the spectator, since we can only know the what of a particular film through its form and style (i.e., the how).
    See that's definitely something you picked up in film school. It's very easy to separate these things because once I'm done watching a film, I ask the question to myself, "was I entertained?" If the answer is yes, now I want to put pen to paper to understand why. It's so stupidly easy to do, I don't even need to know what the ASL is.

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  4. #70079
    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    See that's definitely something you picked up in film school. It's very easy to separate these things because once I'm done watching a film, I ask the question to myself, "was I entertained?" If the answer is yes, now I want to put pen to paper to understand why. It's so stupidly easy to do, I don't even need to know what the ASL is.
    Has there ever been a case where you attempted to understand why a film was entertaining and came to a conclusion other than the how of it?

    Also, why are you so against learning things? Why is knowledge "bs"?
    Just because...
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  5. #70080
    Replacing Luck Since 1984 Dukefrukem's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting baby doll (view post)
    Has there ever been a case where you attempted to understand why a film was entertaining and came to a conclusion other than the how of it?

    Also, why are you so against learning things? Why is knowledge "bs"?
    Knowledge isn't BS (That was a nice spin zone you did there.). The way you are presenting knowledge is BS. The way you simplify my love for Inception down to the cuts per minute, and the only logical reason why I find it a great film, is because I'm a millennial, and because my attention span needs to have fast quick cuts, because my millennial brain is so ignorant to the KNOWLEDGE of CINEMETICS while growing up in the technology era.

    If you want me to take a course in the relationship between quality filmmaking and ASL, point me in the right direction.

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  6. #70081
    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    Knowledge isn't BS (That was a nice spin zone you did there.). The way you are presenting knowledge is BS. The way you simplify my love for Inception down to the cuts per minute, and the only logical reason why I find it a great film, is because I'm a millennial, and because my attention span needs to have fast quick cuts, because my millennial brain is so ignorant to the KNOWLEDGE of CINEMETICS while growing up in the technology era.

    If you want me to take a course in the relationship between quality filmmaking and ASL, point me in the right direction.
    That's pretty clearly a misrepresentation of my argument. My point was never that the only reason you like Inception is because you're a millennial, only that liking Inception is a stereotypically millennial opinion as the film exemplifies a style of cutting derived from TV that millennials are comfortable with (all taste being a matter of cultural training). And the reason millennials are generally comfortable with this style of cutting, and are often bored by the alleged slowness of older films, is in part because close-ups of faces are more legible on small screens (which is how people mostly watch films these days) than the intricate group stagings characteristic of classical Hollywood films, which were designed to be seen on a larger screen. Nor did I claim that fast cutting is inherently inferior to slow cutting (as I said earlier, I like Soviet montage films and '30s Japanese movies), only that the specific style of fast cutting and loud mixing which is now pervasive in contemporary Hollywood filmmaking is aesthetically inferior to classical découpage because it's formulaic and monotonous, and therefore tiresome to watch and listen to for an extended period of time. Classical films with higher ASLs don't consist exclusively of long, elaborate tracking shots (the 30-second ASL of Fallen Angel is clearly an outlier), but a mix of shorter and longer shots of various shot scales. Whether this argument is BS is a matter of debate, but its validity neither rests upon, nor is it disproven, by my having attended a film school and learned things there.
    Last edited by baby doll; 10-30-2020 at 06:05 PM.
    Just because...
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    Sword of Doom (Okamoto Kihachi, 1966) cold

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  7. #70082
    Replacing Luck Since 1984 Dukefrukem's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting baby doll (view post)
    Nor did I claim that fast cutting is inherently inferior to slow cutting (as I said earlier, I like Soviet montage films and '30s Japanese movies), only that the specific style of fast cutting and loud mixing which is now pervasive in contemporary Hollywood filmmaking is aesthetically inferior to classical découpage because it's formulaic and monotonous, and therefore tiresome to watch and listen to for an extended period of time.
    You stated the decline in quality of filmmaking after 1960 can be directly inferred by the ASL metric, and how modern filmmakers generalize their shots.

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  8. #70083
    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    You stated the decline in quality of filmmaking after 1960 can be directly inferred by the ASL metric, and how modern filmmakers generalize their shots.
    Quote Quoting baby doll
    I'm not against fast cutting per se (I like Soviet montage films and the '30s films of Naruse and Ozu); what I dislike about contemporary Hollywood cinema is its monotony and formulaic approach to covering a scene.
    The ASLs I cited provide evidence that cutting in Hollywood films has gotten faster since the end of the classical period, but in itself, this data point doesn't prove a whole lot. For one thing, the ASL is only, as the name suggests, an average. In a film with a high ASL there will still be passages of shot-reverse shot cutting and montage sequences and a film with a low ASL may feature the occasional long take. The important point is not so much that classical films tend to have higher ASLs than contemporary films but that they feature more variety in the length and scale of shots. (David Bordwell has described Intensified Continuity as a bipolar style, which alternates between extreme long shots and close-ups without any plan américains, medium shots, or two-shots.) Moreover, in the best films of the period, the director's choices about where to place the camera, when to move it, and when to cut to something else are always motivated by the narrative. If the decline of Hollywood filmmaking has accelerated since the introduction of digital editing and sound mixing, and I think it has, it's because the increased ease of cutting and layering means that less thought now goes into the decision of when to cut or when to stop layering tracks with the result that every film looks and sounds like every other film.
    Last edited by baby doll; 10-30-2020 at 06:35 PM.
    Just because...
    The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (Lewis Milestone, 1946) mild
    Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (Jason Woliner, 2020) cold
    Sword of Doom (Okamoto Kihachi, 1966) cold

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    The (New) World

  9. #70084
    Replacing Luck Since 1984 Dukefrukem's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting baby doll (view post)
    The ASLs I cited provide evidence that cutting in Hollywood films has gotten faster since the end of the classical period, but in itself, this data point doesn't prove a whole lot. For one thing, the ASL is only, as the name suggests, an average. In a film with a high ASL there will still be passages of shot-reverse shot cutting and montage sequences and a film with a low ASL may feature the occasional long take. The important point is not so much that classical films tend to have higher ASLs than contemporary films but that they feature more variety in the length and scale of shots. (David Bordwell has described Intensified Continuity as a bipolar style, which alternates between extreme long shots and close-ups without any plan américains, medium shots, or two-shots.) Moreover, in the best films of the period, the director's choices about where to place the camera, when to move it, and when to cut to something else are always motivated by the narrative. If the decline of Hollywood filmmaking has accelerated since the introduction of digital editing and sound mixing, and I think it has, it's because the increased ease of cutting and layering means that less thought now goes into the decision of when to cut or when to stop layering tracks with the result that every film looks and sounds like every other film.
    So the millennial thing was just a jab at me then? Since it's not even part of your argument?

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  10. #70085
    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    So the millennial thing was just a jab at me then? Since it's not even part of your argument?
    I couldn't resist.
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  11. #70086
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Need more moviemetrics that can stand the test of time like baseball's sabermetrics, lol.

    I'm certain this can be applied to what wins Oscars for various categories, which I'm not too interested in to figure out myself, but that'd be fun.

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  12. #70087
    The Pan megladon8's Avatar
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    Why didn't Martin Scorsese use deepfake for the de-aging in The Irishman?

    When a youtuber makes your effects look roughly 30000% better and more realistic than what your multi-million dollar production accomplished, there's a problem.
    I'm not being dramatic, I just feel like I'm going to throw up my heart and my head is going to fly away like a bird.

  13. #70088
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting megladon8 (view post)
    Why didn't Martin Scorsese use deepfake for the de-aging in The Irishman?

    When a youtuber makes your effects look roughly 30000% better and more realistic than what your multi-million dollar production accomplished, there's a problem.
    I saw that, and not to take too much away from Irishman, but it does just look like a snapchat filter on top of what was already there.

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  14. #70089
    The Pan megladon8's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Ezee E (view post)
    I saw that, and not to take too much away from Irishman, but it does just look like a snapchat filter on top of what was already there.
    But it looks better than the overly glossy, ripped from a PS2 cutscene stuff we got.

    I havent seen the film, I've just watched several compilations of clips and deconstructions of the effects. And they did a really, really crappy job.
    I'm not being dramatic, I just feel like I'm going to throw up my heart and my head is going to fly away like a bird.

  15. #70090
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    Quote Quoting megladon8 (view post)
    But it looks better than the overly glossy, ripped from a PS2 cutscene stuff we got.

    I havent seen the film, I've just watched several compilations of clips and deconstructions of the effects. And they did a really, really crappy job.
    I think it all works better in the film as things have time to play out and feel how it's all used in the narrative. Clips don't particularly do it justice. Plus: great movie!
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  16. #70091
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting megladon8 (view post)
    But it looks better than the overly glossy, ripped from a PS2 cutscene stuff we got.

    I havent seen the film, I've just watched several compilations of clips and deconstructions of the effects. And they did a really, really crappy job.
    Yeah, but the point is that the fakecut didn't actually do any work to deage. They basically just added on top of what was already there. They didn't take the pre-cgi shots and apply their own.

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  17. #70092
    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    What about another deterrent. Is it a product of the technology? Not necessarily an aesthetic choice? This is all before non-linear editing techniques.
    Look at this take starting at 0:04. It holds on this one shot for over a minute during one of the more critical scene in the movie. Director's choice? Or the editor didn't want to cut anywhere because, "why cut?" Sure loses much of the steam here when you're so far away from the actor's facial reactions.

    It's interesting that you single out that shot for criticism, since, even speaking as someone who's never loved Taxi Driver as much as the general consensus,​ I've still always felt that that scene was probably the best in the film, and the way that shot plays out is part of the reason why, since I love the way that so much plays out in a single tracking shot, with the camera following the taxi/Travis all the way from the sidewalk to the first building's stoop and then to the other throughout all the action, never cutting away, but patiently letting the tension steadily build up throughout the shot, and any cutaways to close-ups would've likely only broken my sense of immersion in the scene, IMO.

    Instead, if I was to criticize any scenes in Driver (besides the ones featuring unnecessary racial stereotypes), it'd be the ones like when Travis chatted with Sport earlier, where the somewhat slack pacing makes it feel slightly more dramatically inert than it should've, which keeps the film from being as consistently engaging to me as, say, Raging Bull (although all that means is that Driver is "just" a 9-out-of-10 movie for me rather than being a straight-up 10, so it doesn't hurt the film a ton or anything). It's not a matter of the average shot length being "long" when measured by modern standards, though, as The Departed supposedly has an ASL of less than half of Driver, and I still found it to be pretty stylistically obnoxious at times, so I'd say it's more an issue of finding the right overall balance for the film in question; some go too far in one direction, some go too much in the opposite way, and some find the perfect ground in the middle for their own purposes.
    Last edited by StuSmallz; 11-01-2020 at 08:31 AM.

  18. #70093
    Replacing Luck Since 1984 Dukefrukem's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting StuSmallz (view post)
    It's interesting that you single out that shot for criticism, since, even speaking as someone who's never loved Taxi Driver as much as the general consensus,​ I've still always felt that that scene was probably the best in the film, and the way that shot plays out is part of the reason why, since I love the way that so much plays out in a single tracking shot, with the camera following the taxi/Travis all the way from the sidewalk to the first building's stoop and then to the other throughout all the action, never cutting away, but patiently letting the tension steadily build up throughout the shot, and any cutaways to close-ups would've likely only broken my sense of immersion in the scene, IMO.

    Instead, if I was to criticize any scenes in Driver (besides the ones featuring unnecessary racial stereotypes), it'd be the ones like when Travis chatted with Sport earlier, where the somewhat slack pacing makes it feel slightly more dramatically inert than it should've, which keeps the film from being as consistently engaging to me as, say, Raging Bull (although all that means is that Driver is "just" a 9-out-of-10 movie for me rather than being a straight-up 10, so it doesn't hurt the film a ton or anything). It's not a matter of the average shot length being "long" when measured by modern standards, though, as The Departed supposedly has an ASL of less than half of Driver, and I still found it to be pretty stylistically obnoxious at times, so I'd say it's more an issue of finding the right overall balance for the film in question; some go too far in one direction, some go too much in the opposite way, and some find the perfect ground in the middle for their own purposes.
    I don't mean to be so harsh on that scene. I merely using that specific scene to emphasis (probably to hyperbole) my problem with films from the 70s, which all feel like they were cut the exact same way, with the exact same framing and the exact same grainy "realistic" tone, and some of the technical hiccups that result in it.

    For shits, I'll give another highly praised scene that people cream their pants over but I tend to scoff at; Just imagine what a second camera could do here:


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  19. #70094
    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    I don't mean to be so harsh on that scene. I merely using that specific scene to emphasis (probably to hyperbole) my problem with films from the 70s, which all feel like they were cut the exact same way, with the exact same framing and the exact same grainy "realistic" tone, and some of the technical hiccups that result in it.

    For shits, I'll give another highly praised scene that people cream their pants over but I tend to scoff at; Just imagine what a second camera could do here:

    Maybe you better tell us what a second camera could do here instead of us imagining it, since in contrast with the scene from Taxi Driver, there are quite a few cut-ins to closer views of the beating to emphasize particular bits of action (e.g., Caan biting his brother-in-law's knuckles). It's not virtuoso filmmaking--and I'm not aware of anyone who's creamed their pants over this particular scene--but then it doesn't need to be: It's not a major event in the narrative, so there's no reason to draw it out into a self-contained set piece.
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  20. #70095
    Since 1929 Morris Schæffer's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting megladon8 (view post)
    Why didn't Martin Scorsese use deepfake for the de-aging in The Irishman?

    When a youtuber makes your effects look roughly 30000% better and more realistic than what your multi-million dollar production accomplished, there's a problem.
    Ego maybe? Filmmakers are like soccer coaches. No one tells them what to do. They don't need help, least of all from YouTubers. The CGI was a distraction for me too though.
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  21. #70096
    Criterion time DFA1979's Avatar
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    So baby doll vs Duke was just boomer vs millennial?
    Horrorfest 2020

    And as he lay there
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  22. #70097
    collecting tapes Skitch's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting DFA1979 (view post)
    So baby doll vs Duke was just boomer vs millennial?
    But im closer to boomer than either of them, yet im still far from boomer. Nah duke just got hooked by bd.

  23. #70098
    Replacing Luck Since 1984 Dukefrukem's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting DFA1979 (view post)
    So baby doll vs Duke was just boomer vs millennial?
    Pretty sure all three of us were born in the same year. Not shocked you didn't know that.

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  24. #70099
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Watched that scene as well, and there's plenty of cuts. It's also not even in the top ten of referenced Godfather Scenes.

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  25. #70100
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    Quote Quoting Ezee E (view post)
    It's also not even in the top ten of referenced Godfather Scenes.
    I would estimate it is, but I haven't seen The Godfather recently enough to actually argue that point.

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