View Poll Results: THE BFG

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Thread: The BFG (Steven Spielberg)

  1. #1
    In the belly of a whale Henry Gale's Avatar
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    The BFG (Steven Spielberg)


  2. #2
    In the belly of a whale Henry Gale's Avatar
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    It feels a bit weird to think of something as this big-budgeted, vast in scope and with as many ambitious ideas in it as simply a nice, charming, little movie, but that's exactly what it is. It alternates efficiently between very specific modes of weird, sweet, and intense from scene to scene, and its icing is how gorgeously dreamy and lucidly it operates overall, which goes beyond the fact that it's a movie largely about dreams. The leads are great and just as heartwarming as they need to be, the movie rarely looks anything other than perfect, and yet, why doesn't it ever quite feel transcendentally good?

    Sometimes it goes all the way into the amazingly ethereal for sequences that I kind of wish it had just basked in even more, with all the other seriously strange Dahlian flourishes and joyfully juvenile bits to balance out that beauty and all the more matter-of-fact approaches to presenting its fantasy world, but despite how much I loved all of those sort of bits it does frequently offer and the overall infectiousness of its main duo together, the movie also oddly never really found that extra oomph to push it to a higher tier or emotion or awe for me.

    It's funny this was my second screening in as many days, and this shares way more similarities to yesterday's movie, Taika Waititi's Hunt For the Wilderpeople, than I expected it to. It might also just be the high of that film's magic still lingering for me that made this feel like a step down (which honestly, most movies this year would've been from it) but despite some stellar sequences and the lovely core relationship, The BFG just feels a lot less remarkable than it should.

    Having just watched Nicolas Roeg's adaptation of Dahl's The Witches about a year or so ago for the first time since I was really young, I was struck by how much of it suddenly dawned on me as having left a profound impression on me. Even if I had forgotten that it was the source of so much of its imagery was, I realized moments from it would billow into my mind over the years. It was as stunning, strartling, bizarre, biting, and beautiful as ever, and despite being 25 years old, it hadn't felt like much in the meantime really spiritually borrowed or blatantly replicated what it did, it all just felt so singular. But watching The BFG, I couldn't help but feel like as a book it might simply have been so much of an influence on Spielberg's past film work that now even another generation of filmmakers has been raised on, evolved with and moved the medium forward with. As a result, this movie doesn't feel like much that hasn't been done before outside of the technology at hand and the specificity of it being Dahl's beloved story as the engine.

    It feels more like Spielberg crossing a project off of his list that's been there for some time instead of a new inspiration that he's gotten to tackle immediately, but there's no harm in that, and if every director had indulgences that ended up expertly crafted as this, then big tentpole filmmaking would be a much more interesting place. It's just a lovely, quaint little oddity of a big movie that simultaneously feels less great than it could be but still better than it should be.

    Last-second hot-take: Better than Finding Dory. (But really at the end of the day, Disney continues to have all of our money either way.)
    Last edited by Henry Gale; 06-24-2016 at 08:36 AM.
    BlacKkKlansman (Lee, 2018) **** / 9.1
    Murder On The Orient Express (Branagh, 2017) *** / 8.3
    Mission: Impossible Fallout (McQuarrie, 2018) *** / 8.8
    Blindspotting (Estrada, 2018) *** / 8.4
    Leave No Trace (Granik, 2018) *** / 8.6
    Eighth Grade (Burnham, 2018) *** / 8.5
    Sorry To Bother You (Riley, 2018) **** / 9.2
    Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (Bayona, 2018) ** / 5.9
    2001: A Space Odyssey [in 70mm] (Kubrick, 1968) **** / 10

  3. #3
    unattainable Zac Efron's Avatar
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    A little slow to start and probably not for everyone, but for me this was magic, beautiful, touching and spectacularly conceived. Brilliant casting and CGI that takes visual filmmaking to another place.
    I saw this at a tiny strip mall theater in the sticks of NH, with various families eager to entertain their noisy kids on a saturday night for a few hours instead of taking them to the local raceway- and everyone clapped at the end. I've never witnessed clapping at the end of a film geared towards children, let alone clapping at this theater. I hope this finds an audience, one that will appreciate the oddities and unique storytelling that the book has to offer.

  4. #4
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Wow this bombed even internationally.

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  5. #5
    Winston* Classic Winston*'s Avatar
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    This was lovely. WTF, world?

    I haven't seen War Horse, but 2011 - 2016 is the best 5 year period of Spielberg's career.

    EDIT: 6 year. I'm dumb.

  6. #6
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Lol Oh my god no.

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  7. #7
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Saving Private Ryan (1998)
    Amistad (1997)
    The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)
    Schindler's List (1993)
    Jurassic Park (1993)

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  8. #8
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    The Color Purple (1985)
    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)
    E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)
    Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

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  9. #9
    Winston* Classic Winston*'s Avatar
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    Amistad and The Lost World are bad movies.

    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom is a bad movie.

  10. #10
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Okay well everything Spielberg has done since 2002 (Sans BFG since I haven't seen it yet) with the exception of The Adventures of Tintin are bad movies. That's like 37 movies.

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    Uwe Boll movies > all Marvel U movies

  11. #11
    Winston* Classic Winston*'s Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    Okay well everything Spielberg has done since 2002 (Sans BFG since I haven't seen it yet) with the exception of The Adventures of Tintin are bad movies. That's like 37 movies.
    Munich? Catch Me if You Can? Bridge of Spies? Lincoln? This? You're weird.

  12. #12
    Winston* Classic Winston*'s Avatar
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    Though, with the probable exception of 1941(I haven't seen it), 1971-1982 is pretty impressive. Best 12 year period of Spielberg's career, I say!

  13. #13
    Winston* Classic Winston*'s Avatar
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    1975 is the best 1 year period.

  14. #14
    Moderator TGM's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Winston* (view post)
    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom is a bad movie.
    Temple of Doom > The BFG

  15. #15
    - - - - - Irish's Avatar
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    +1 Duke.

    Everything from the late 90s onwards verges on mediocre.

    Spielberg's technical acumen never wavered but his storytelling started to suck after the Jurassic stuff. Either he's bombastic (Munich) or cloying (Catch Me If You Can) or a whore (Crystal Skull).

    He's popcorn vendor who worries too much about his legacy, and I think that hurts his overall output.

  16. #16
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Quote Quoting Winston* (view post)
    Munich? Catch Me if You Can? Bridge of Spies? Lincoln? This? You're weird.
    Everything after Catch Me if You Can is bad.

    I could, but I won't, argue everything after Saving Private Ryan.

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  17. #17
    good for health Skitch's Avatar
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    Fine. (not in any order within categories)

    Great:

    Close Encounters of the Third Kind
    Jaws
    War of the Worlds
    Catch Me If You Can
    Minority Report
    A.I. Artificial Intelligence
    Saving Private Ryan
    Schindler's List
    Jurassic Park
    Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
    Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
    Raiders of the Lost Ark

    Good:

    Duel
    Lincoln
    The Terminal
    Munich
    Hook
    The Adventures of Tintin

    Not Good:

    The Lost World: Jurassic Park
    E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

    Horrible:

    Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
    1941

    Rest I haven't seen or don't remember.

  18. #18
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Curious why you think The Terminal is so good Skitch?

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  19. #19
    good for health Skitch's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    Curious why you think The Terminal is so good Skitch?
    I enjoy that flick! Hanks gives a great performance, its overflowing with heart especially the third act, its funny in spots, it just works for me. Not the greatest movie in the world but it can still bring me to tears towards the end.

  20. #20
    The Pan Spinal's Avatar
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    I'd put Bridge of Spies alongside anything else Spielberg made in his career, although that probably has as much to do with the script as anything else.
    The Night of the Hunted (Rollin, 1980) **1/2
    The Demoniacs (Rollin, 1974) **
    First Man (Chazelle, 2018) ***
    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) **

  21. #21
    Second star to the right [ETM]'s Avatar
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    This is only playing with synchronized audio here. FUCK. THAT. SHIT.

  22. #22
    - - - - - Irish's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Skitch (view post)
    Good:
    Hook

    Not Good:
    E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
    I feel like you deserve a lot of grief for this

    Quote Quoting Spinal (view post)
    I'd put Bridge of Spies alongside anything else Spielberg made in his career, although that probably has as much to do with the script as anything else.
    Went back to the Spies thread and re-read your comments. Now I gotta watch this thing again, because you dig it so much.

  23. #23
    The Pan Spinal's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Irish (view post)
    Went back to the Spies thread and re-read your comments. Now I gotta watch this thing again, because you dig it so much.
    I don't know. It's probably the same film you remember. I just think it does a great job of expressing what it means to be guided by integrity and not blind nationalism.
    The Night of the Hunted (Rollin, 1980) **1/2
    The Demoniacs (Rollin, 1974) **
    First Man (Chazelle, 2018) ***
    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) **

  24. #24
    - - - - - Irish's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Spinal (view post)
    I don't know. It's probably the same film you remember. I just think it does a great job of expressing what it means to be guided by integrity and not blind nationalism.
    It probably is -- but I find your take on it interesting & a legit take on the movie and want to rewatch from that angle

  25. #25
    Replacing Luck Since 1984
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    Ugh. Bridge of Spies is the safest movie Spielberg could have ever made. The only "safter" movie he could have made, but opted out, would be American Sniper.

    It's like he wants to separate himself entirely from his early work- completely changing his style in his more mature films; War Horse, Munich, BoS, Lincoln.

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