View Poll Results: Argo

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  • Yay

    37 68.52%
  • Nay

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Thread: Argo (Ben Affleck)

  1. #26
    Since 1929 Morris Schæffer's Avatar
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    Well, I thought it was pretty great. There were two close-ups that really caught my attention. One was on an ashtray bursting at the seams with cigarette butts as if Affleck was concerned the period detail wouldn't be authentic enough. And another was during the Arkin/Goodman diner sequence where we see a wall of celebrities, including Cary Grant and Burt Lancaster, but for some reason the camera seems to home in on Lee Majors, the six million dollar man. He also did The Fall Guy in the 80's in which he played stuntman Colt Seavers, a kind of employment that deals with make believe in the movies, an unsung hero. Like Tony Mendez perhaps? I'm probably reaching, but one of the last lines is telling. "An American what?"

    I was also reminded of Apollo 13 when the CIA agents congratulated themselves on a job well done. Anyone else thought of the scene with C3PO in return of the jedi narrating to the Ewok population when Scoot McNairy was making blaster and spaceship noises to the national guard?

    The ending on the runway was a bit overblown. I half expected Lee Marvin to start growling "Where the hell is McCoy?!" after which Chuck Norris obliterates the opposition with his missile-equipped motorcycle.
    MOVIES

    • Suspiria (Argento, 1977) ♦♦♦ -- rewatch
    • The Predator (Black, 2018) ♦♦
    • A Star is Born (Cooper, 2018) ♦♦♦½
    • Sleepless in Seattle (Ephron, 1993) ♦♦
    • Lukas (Leclercq, 2018) ♦♦♦
    • The Meg (Turteltaub, 2018) ♦♦½
    • Ant-Man and the Wasp (Reed, 2018) ♦♦½
    • Skyscraper (Thurber, 2018) ♦♦½
    • Blow Out (De Palma, 1981) ♦♦♦
    • Tomb Raider (Uthaug, 2018) ♦½
    • Mission Impossible - Fallout (McQuarrie, 2018) ♦♦♦♦
    • Sicario: Day of the Soldado (Sollima, 2018) ♦♦½

    TV

    • The Vietnam War (2017) ♦♦♦♦ // Homeland (S7) ♦♦♦♦ // The Bridge (SE/DK) (S4) ♦♦♦♦
    • The Americans (S6) ♦♦♦♦ // The Walking Dead (S8) ♦♦♦ // Designated Survivor (S2) ♦♦

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  2. #27
    The Pan Spinal's Avatar
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    Tense and engaging. I would say that the opening sequence works best. I liked the way the film uses archival footage. A few moments strained credibility and seemed a little too manipulative (the release of tickets at airport check-in, the phone call to the studio, the chase on the runway). I'm also not certain that there is a whole lot of story here. There's a set-up and a conclusion, but there isn't a whole lot in the middle. Still, the film should be commended for contextualizing Iranian anger and creating a palpable sense of tension.
    A Star is Born (Cooper, 2018) ***
    A Simple Favor (Feig, 2018) **1/2
    Mandy (Cosmatos, 2018) **1/2
    The Three Musketeers (Niblo, 1921) **
    Chi-Raq (Lee, 2015) ***1/2
    The Headless Woman (Martel, 2008) ***
    Searching (Chaganty, 2018) **
    The Neon Demon (Refn, 2016) **
    BlacKkKlansman (Lee, 2018) ****
    Happy End (Haneke, 2017) ***1/2

  3. #28
    The Pan Spinal's Avatar
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    Just been reading up on the historical inspiration for this film. Boy, there were even more liberties taken with this story than I realized.
    A Star is Born (Cooper, 2018) ***
    A Simple Favor (Feig, 2018) **1/2
    Mandy (Cosmatos, 2018) **1/2
    The Three Musketeers (Niblo, 1921) **
    Chi-Raq (Lee, 2015) ***1/2
    The Headless Woman (Martel, 2008) ***
    Searching (Chaganty, 2018) **
    The Neon Demon (Refn, 2016) **
    BlacKkKlansman (Lee, 2018) ****
    Happy End (Haneke, 2017) ***1/2

  4. #29
    - - - - - Irish's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Spinal (view post)
    Just been reading up on the historical inspiration for this film. Boy, there were even more liberties taken with this story than I realized.
    Read this.

    http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2012/11...laic-thinking/

  5. #30
    The Pan Spinal's Avatar
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    Good stuff. I was caught up in the film as I was watching it, but I've felt kind of guilty for enjoying it ever since. Affleck's credits contain side-by-side pictures of images from both the film and historical inspiration as if to say, 'We did our research. You can trust us.' But it just doesn't seem like this film is very trustworthy historically. And while historical accuracy may not be essential for certain kinds of film, I think this is a movie that really needs to have that kind of integrity because it is dealing with sensitive relations between nations that are still a danger to each other.
    A Star is Born (Cooper, 2018) ***
    A Simple Favor (Feig, 2018) **1/2
    Mandy (Cosmatos, 2018) **1/2
    The Three Musketeers (Niblo, 1921) **
    Chi-Raq (Lee, 2015) ***1/2
    The Headless Woman (Martel, 2008) ***
    Searching (Chaganty, 2018) **
    The Neon Demon (Refn, 2016) **
    BlacKkKlansman (Lee, 2018) ****
    Happy End (Haneke, 2017) ***1/2

  6. #31
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Why does number8 get two votes?

    This was great. Fantastic tension in the last act, I don't care about the coincidences/close calls. It works and it works great.

    Just Watched
    A bunch of crap until Infinity War

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  7. #32
    needs therapy, maybe. NickGlass's Avatar
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    In regards to Argo working overtime in the suspense department, check these video clips out.

    Watch this:

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/new...i-films-390168

    And then go to the full interview and listen to Terrio's comments (roughly 12 minutes in, I believe):

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/vid...terview-390250
    I'm writing for Slant Magazine now, so check out my list of reviews.

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  8. #33
    Nothing special. This is Transparently Manufactured Obstacles: The Movie. Competent from beginning to end and an obvious crowd-pleaser, but stirred very little in me either emotionally or intellectually. Trying to make this play like a historically accurate thriller was a mistake, I think. This story seems well-suited for some obvious Hollywood dramatization and at least a bit more tongue-in-cheek-ness.

  9. #34
    Haven't read up on issues of historical accuracy, but the best thing about this movie is how it directly deals with the political history and society of Iran. It's essentially an American film that half takes place in Iran and can be said to be about Iran, so it has that much credit for that. Affleck is an idealist, and miraculously not a simple-minded one - Argo retains the sense of even-handedness and willingness to engage evenly about touchy matters that is in his other films.

    But I was disappointed, I thought it was hugely uneven. It's generally saved by Affleck remaining a confident visual filmmaker, but it completely derailed for me once Hollywood enters the picture and suddenly begins to move in schematic Hollywood-scriptwriting shorthand. And Affleck does not know how to meld the politics with the "fun stuff" without it turning over completely, e.g. the table read/hostage negotiating parallel editing... blech.

    A good finish, though. The previously awful "Affleck's son" stuff is redeemed as a way to bring a 70s political thriller into the realm of 00s Affleck film, with the political thriller cipher finding his way into affecting Affleck-style home and hearth appreciation.
    The Act of Killing (Oppenheimer 13) - A
    Stranger by the Lake (Giraudie 12) - B
    American Hustle (Russell 13) - C+
    The Wolf of Wall Street (Scorsese 13) - C+
    Passion (De Palma 12) - B

  10. #35
    unattainable Zac Efron's Avatar
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    I'll take Hollywood Shit Your Parents Will Love for $200, Alex.

  11. #36
    OMG WILL ARKIN AND GOODMAN CROSS THE STREET IN TIME?
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    almost arthouse (ep #28: remembering PSH and most anticipated 2014 films)

  12. #37
    Quote Quoting plain (view post)
    OMG WILL ARKIN AND GOODMAN CROSS THE STREET IN TIME?
    :lol:
    letterboxd.

    Crazy Rich Asians (2018) ***
    The Informant! (2009) ***1/2
    BlacKkKlansman (2018) ***1/2
    Sorry to Bother You (2018) **1/2
    Eighth Grade (2018) ***
    Mission Impossible: Fallout (2018) ***
    Ant-Man and The Wasp (2018) **1/2
    Ant-Man (2015) **
    Leave No Trace (2018) ***
    Ocean's 8 (2018) **1/2

  13. #38
    pushing too many pencils Rowland's Avatar
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    This is one of the movies I've seen this year that I most wonder if I may have overrated. My recollection of it keeps returning to Goodman's smarmy mugging and Arkin repeatedly telling the movie to fuck itself.
    Letterboxd rating scale:
    The Long Riders (Hill) ***
    Furious 7 (Wan) **½
    Hard Times (Hill) ****½
    Another 48 Hrs. (Hill) ***
    /48 Hrs./ (Hill) ***½
    The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec (Besson) ***
    /Unknown/ (Collet-Serra) ***½
    Animal (Simmons) **

  14. #39
    The Pan Spinal's Avatar
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    I would probably change my yay to a nay if I were to vote right now.

    EDIT: Oh, I can change my vote. Didn't realize that before.
    A Star is Born (Cooper, 2018) ***
    A Simple Favor (Feig, 2018) **1/2
    Mandy (Cosmatos, 2018) **1/2
    The Three Musketeers (Niblo, 1921) **
    Chi-Raq (Lee, 2015) ***1/2
    The Headless Woman (Martel, 2008) ***
    Searching (Chaganty, 2018) **
    The Neon Demon (Refn, 2016) **
    BlacKkKlansman (Lee, 2018) ****
    Happy End (Haneke, 2017) ***1/2

  15. #40
    Piss off, ghost! number8's Avatar
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    Wink

    I don't know of I would, but my opinion of it certainly keeps lessening with time.
    Quote Quoting Donald Glover
    I was actually just reading about Matt Damon and he’s like, ‘There’s a culture of outrage.’ I’m like, ‘Well, they have a reason to be outraged.’ I think it’s a lot of dudes just being scared. They’re like, ‘What if I did something and I didn’t realize it?’ I’m like, ‘Deal with it.’
    Movie Theater Diary

  16. #41
    Yes, retrospection isn't kind to it and I remember actually checking my phone in the middle of it (and I never do that), but I'm convinced it's pretty good and I roll my eyes at all the prominent critics getting all huffy and high-and-mighty on it. (Haven't dived into the Zero Dark Thirty Aesthetics and Politics debate yet.)
    The Act of Killing (Oppenheimer 13) - A
    Stranger by the Lake (Giraudie 12) - B
    American Hustle (Russell 13) - C+
    The Wolf of Wall Street (Scorsese 13) - C+
    Passion (De Palma 12) - B

  17. #42
    If you took it on a meta-level - Hollywood invents a story, makes it as palatable as possible to the intended audience, and its only later when you think about it that you realize that it was all full of shit (and Argo does exactly the same thing, but we are the Iranians!) - you could argue that this is ballsy brilliance. But unfortunately, there is no real evidence of this actually being the main point of the film. Instead, it just seems that Affleck and co. have just filed the interesting edges off the story (e.g. the escapees originally sneaking from one empty apartment to the next before even ending up at the Canadian embassy; the Canadian parliament actually having the first emergency session since WW2 to allow fake Canadian passports to be made etc) and replacing them with audience-friendly Big Obstacles (the entire 3rd act) and Sad Personal Back Stories (Mendez). Why did they have to make the six Americans such passive little mice, when I read that a couple of them actually took to the story with gusto?

    BUT...

    Imagine if I had no idea that this was a true story, and in fact was just watching a Hollywood movie about stuff. I would have thought that the filmmaking was actually quite effective, that the tension at the end was well-coiled, that the start actually did quite a good job of laying out the political problem that instigates the whole thing, and that it is quite effortless in laying out its story.

    So, well, you want me to make up my mind? Argo fuck yourself.
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    Along with the Gods: The Two Worlds (2017) 61
    The Death of Stalin (2017) 67

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  18. #43
    Quote Quoting transmogrifier (view post)
    If you took it on a meta-level...

    [...]

    So, well, you want me to make up my mind? Argo fuck yourself.
    Whoa. Like, that whole review is the movie, right?

    Seriously: you start off with the dark and roiling possible-brilliance, then begin describing the crappy middle segments, pull a switcheroo with a slam-bang capitalized intertitle, settle into middlebrow critical pleasantry, then cap off with the fuck you and we're still stranded with our opinion after some thinking time, post-reading you. So am I totally getting you, or am I pulling a transmogrifier on your Affleck? :P
    The Act of Killing (Oppenheimer 13) - A
    Stranger by the Lake (Giraudie 12) - B
    American Hustle (Russell 13) - C+
    The Wolf of Wall Street (Scorsese 13) - C+
    Passion (De Palma 12) - B

  19. #44
    something real elixir's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting transmogrifier (view post)
    Argo fuck yourself.
    literally worse than the n-word

  20. #45
    Piss off, ghost! number8's Avatar
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    I'm fairly certain that this screenplay is nominated just because people fell in love with that pun.
    Quote Quoting Donald Glover
    I was actually just reading about Matt Damon and he’s like, ‘There’s a culture of outrage.’ I’m like, ‘Well, they have a reason to be outraged.’ I think it’s a lot of dudes just being scared. They’re like, ‘What if I did something and I didn’t realize it?’ I’m like, ‘Deal with it.’
    Movie Theater Diary

  21. #46
    - - - - - Irish's Avatar
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    I enjoyed this, for what it was. Mostly, I marveled at Affleck's ability, as a somewhat inexperienced director, to present a complicated storyline in such a straightforward manner. Plus, the sheer number of locations and setups is kinda staggering.

    The whole "true story" bit -- and including the real-life photos during the credits -- seemed oddly defensive, as if Affleck was attempting to lend more profundity to his movie than it might have deserved.

    If I have any kind of beef with this movie, it's that it is more about Big Historical Events than people, or any single story, and almost plays as a quasi-documentary (and might have played better as a pure documentary).

    This is similar to "Zero Dark Thirty," in a way. I think both of these movies are well made, and entertaining, and worth seeing. But neither one strikes me as having depth, or breadth. For lack of a better word, they lack the heaviness and "epic" feel of something that might be called "Best Picture of 2012." To put it another way: I can't imagine anyone really wanting to see either of these movies more than once.

    Fun fact: For the last five years, every winner of the Toronto Film Festival and ever winner of the Producer's Guild Awards has gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar.

    "Argo" has won both of them.

  22. #47
    needs therapy, maybe. NickGlass's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Irish (view post)
    Fun fact: For the last five years, every winner of the Toronto Film Festival and ever winner of the Producer's Guild Awards has gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar.

    "Argo" has won both of them.
    Sorry to be persnickety, but Argo did not win the TIFF People's Choice Award--Silver Linings Playbook did. Also, only two of the (highly dubious) TIFF People's Choice Award winners of the past 5 years have gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar (Slumdog and King's Speech, ugh).

    Quote Quoting irish
    For lack of a better word, they lack the heaviness and "epic" feel of something that might be called "Best Picture of 2012." To put it another way: I can't imagine anyone really wanting to see either of these movies more than once.
    This, however, sounds like a Best Picture Oscar winner to me!
    I'm writing for Slant Magazine now, so check out my list of reviews.

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  23. #48
    - - - - - Irish's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting NickGlass (view post)
    Sorry to be persnickety, but Argo did not win the TIFF People's Choice Award--Silver Linings Playbook did. Also, only two of the (highly dubious) TIFF People's Choice Award winners of the past 5 years have gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar (Slumdog and King's Speech, ugh).
    That's not persnickety at all. Your post is accurate, mine wasn't. I was going off a tweet from Roger Ebert the other day, which pointed to a blog post he made last September predicting "Argo" as Best Pic winner based on its performance in Toronto.

    I should have read more carefully. Thanks for the clarification.

    PS: I'm tempted just to make up Oscar facts over the next month, spread them around, and see if anyone catches on.

    PPS: Did you know that Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep each won an Academy Award for Best Performance for "Heartburn" in 1986? It's the only time in Academy history that has ever happened.

  24. #49
    A Platypus Grouchy's Avatar
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    Huh, I'm calling bullshit on this one. Inflated run-of-the-mill Great Escape bullshit. I love The Great Escape, don't get me wrong. But its claims to be a relevant "issue movie" are ridiculous. It's a big blowjob to the CIA and nothing more.

    Affleck is a very good director, but both The Town and this, while well manufactured products, lack the interest of a truly ambiguous and compelling story like the one Gone Baby Gone had.

    I was half-expecting the big inaccuracies, but the ones that bothered me the most were:
    - That looks nothing like Jack Kirby's art.
    - Looking at a picture of the real Tony Mendez, it seems like the perfect leading role for Luis Guzmán. I bet the movie would've been better with him.

  25. #50
    A Platypus Grouchy's Avatar
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    Huh, I clicked "Yay" instead of "Nay". Can a Mod correct me on this?

    I'm a stupid fast-clicking punk.

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