Author Topic: What was the last movie you watched?  (Read 1584309 times)

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Offline Russoguru

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18300 on: November 04, 2018, 01:38:18 PM »
(I can't remember Deep Rising, I'm sorry Darth) I'm guessing there's no relation to Deep Impact? The movie that was made to compete with Armageddon much in the same way Dante's peak was made to compete with Volcano?


Offline Darth Geek

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18301 on: November 04, 2018, 01:44:00 PM »
(I can't remember Deep Rising, I'm sorry Darth) I'm guessing there's no relation to Deep Impact? The movie that was made to compete with Armageddon much in the same way Dante's peak was made to compete with Volcano?
Nope, no relation. Deep Rising is a monster movie made by Stephen Summers, before he made The Mummy.



Offline eegah

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18302 on: November 04, 2018, 02:00:50 PM »
Under the Skin

This is the kind of movie that I really like: different, and makes you think. Early on, I thought it was just going to be alien ScarJo preying on lonely men, but it evolved in a way that was very captivating. Great movie.


Offline Russoguru

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18303 on: November 04, 2018, 04:47:31 PM »
I was just thinking about movies where I've seen somebody(or something living) tossed out an airlock and... strange thing the first two instances of that happening that came to my mind were Moonraker and Alien. Very peculiar since they both came out the same year. Obviously though there is a huge difference in the quality of those movies.


Offline stethacantus

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18304 on: November 04, 2018, 09:56:13 PM »
Riki-Oh ( a.k.a. The Story of Ricky ) ( 1991 )
Wanted to watch this a couple of weeks ago but couldn't find it. About a week ago I wanted to see Human Lanterns for Halloween, and while looking for that film found Riki-Oh. Then a few nights ago while putting away the horror films I watched last Saturday found both Seeding of a Ghost and Human Lanterns. Some day I will move some place where I am allowed to nail shelves on the wall. Until then I am stuck this system of having all my DVDs in boxes, trying to keep them organized, but not doing a good job at it. I am having more luck finding films by accident.

You can thank The Daily Show for this film being in this country. The original host Craig Kilborn had a segment called Five Questions, which were just 5 rapid fire questions he would ask a guest.  The segment opened with a clip of a man slamming another man's head causing it to explode. When Kilborn moved to CBS to host the Late Late Show, he brought his popular Five Questions segment with him, only changing the opening clip to a fat guy ballooning up and exploding. Both clips were taken from a bootleg of Riki-Oh, giving the obscure Asian film mainstream recognition, leading to Tokyo Shock to get the rights to the film and release it in North America. Actually, Riki-Oh was already available in the United States as an import via Tai Sing, who had imported hundreds of Hong Kong movies on DVD. Realizing there had been a huge market for Hong Kong action movies, DVDs in Asia were released zone free and with English menus and subtitles, and occasionally with an English dub track. Unfortunately, these DVDs were not very well made. For example, most DVDs manufactured and released by Universe Laser & Video have since become unplayable due to DVD rot. ( This is what happened to my copy of Mr Vampire, while my copy of The Seventh Curse is no longer playable on my DVD player, but still playable on the Blu-ray player. I have lots of import DVDs in boxes I haven't watched in years and I dread finding out how many more have rotted. ) Tokyo Shock didn't even bother to remaster the film for themselves or authorize their own menus. It is basically the same exact Tai Sing imported Universe Laser & Video  DVD program being repressed onto Tokyo Shock discs. Fortunately these are US pressed discs, so there was no sign of any rot. I did, however, realize that it is not a very good transfer, looking more like it was sourced from VHS than a scan of a movie print. But that was always the problem with films owned by Media Asia.


Okay, on to the film. It's garbage. It's crap. It is a bad movie. But it is fun as hell to watch. The film is about a loner named Riki who goes to prison for manslaughter. In flashbacks we learn that Riki had been taught some sort of magical Kung Fu in a graveyard by his uncle which gives him superhuman strength and abilities. We also learn what drove Riki to the crime that landed him in prison. The prison itself is run by a corrupt warden who is using it to grow opium, and using the inmates as a cheap work force. To keep the prisoners in line the warden has deputized four  tough prisoners  with martial arts abilities, known as the Gang of Four, to rule over the inmates lie gang leaders and kill any troublemakers. Of course Riki ends up killing each member of the Gang of Four, along with the warden. But before that happens there is a lot of gory prison violence. At least a couple of things in this movie almost made me puke, and this is after years of being desensitized to gore by watching American splatter films.    Basically one outrageous thing after another happens. So even though this is basically an awful movie, there is one over the top violent moment after another to keep you entertained. BTW, I consider all the violence to be spoilers, which is why I will not give away any in detail other than the clips that Kilborn made viral. But the writers of this movie came up with every violent prison death imaginable.


The Mark of Zorro ( 1940 )
This movie is suppose to be a remake of the 1920 silent film, so as I am not watching that film for a couple of weeks, I will save the comparison until then. I will say that what is supposed to be the definitive version of Curse of the Capistrano is actually slightly boring. This movie is more about the Don Diego persona than Zorro, and much like The Bold Caballero, Diego doesn't even get into his Zorro persona in the last half hour of the movie. Imagine if a Batman movie had an ending where instead of Batman, Bruce Wayne fought he villain. Same guy, but you want him wearing the costume. This time around the director cant make up his mind how Zorro disguises his face. In some scenes he covers his mouth with a black bandana. In others he has a mask, and in others eyeholes through a black headwrap. Bad continuity, or couldn't Don Diego make up his mind what his costume would be? Since I have already seen the 1920 version back in the 80s and still remember it's plot, I can safely say that there exists no version of Zorro ( from an American studio  at least ) that follows the plot of the book. In Curse of the Capistrano the identity of Zorro is kept a mystery until the final chapter, which there is then the shocking reveal that the fey Don Diego was Zorro, and that his fey persona was really an act all along so that no one would suspect he was Zorro. All other versions of Zorro give away that Don Diego and Zorro are the same within the first ten minutes.  I guess Zorro is such a well known character that it is pointless to have a film where you try to guess his identity. But it would have been nice to see someone try.


I was just thinking about movies where I've seen somebody(or something living) tossed out an airlock and... strange thing the first two instances of that happening that came to my mind were Moonraker and Alien. Very peculiar since they both came out the same year. Obviously though there is a huge difference in the quality of those movies.


The first thing I remember is the attempt to toss Santa out of the airlock in Santa Claus Conquers The Martians
« Last Edit: November 04, 2018, 10:00:19 PM by stethacantus »


Offline Darth Geek

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18305 on: November 05, 2018, 07:24:37 PM »
The Wrong Guy (1997) - I like Dave Foley, but this was just dumb and very unfunny. I only laughed maybe half a dozen time in the whole thing. There's a couple interesting ideas in here, like the town bank being taken over by the farmers. But the execution of the jokes is just lacking. And the story meanders a lot. Unfortunately Foley's character isn't really all that likable, so I really didn't care what he was going through. And since they give away at the beginning that he's not being hunted by the police, there's no threat to him.



Offline Johnny Unusual

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18306 on: November 05, 2018, 07:29:23 PM »
Batman Ninja isn't everything I hoped it would be.  It's more.  It completely surpassed my expectations by being the most stylish and most bonkers movie I have seen all year.

Like in terms of stylish, it's a movie full of clever visual elements beyond simply good animation.  Also, it has a video game-ish tone, in a good way.  There's a section where we see the Bat-Family discussing their various strategies for beefing up their village and combat capabilities and it's designed like a Japanese tapestry but it also feels like a video game dialogue scene, especially when Alfred gives dinner options.  Also, there's a giant robot made of a castle in the first 17 minutes of the movie and it fails to slow down.

The whole thing is bonkers but it's also very delightful, fun and true to the characters.  And that climax will have your jaw dropping when it reveals a giant... no, I can't say.  Can't even cover this with a spoiler.  You need to watch it for yourself.


Offline Charles Castle

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18307 on: November 05, 2018, 08:28:34 PM »
Riki-Oh ( a.k.a. The Story of Ricky ) ( 1991 )
You can thank The Daily Show for this film being in this country. The original host Craig Kilborn had a segment called Five Questions, which were just 5 rapid fire questions he would ask a guest.  The segment opened with a clip of a man slamming another man's head causing it to explode. When Kilborn moved to CBS to host the Late Late Show, he brought his popular Five Questions segment with him, only changing the opening clip to a fat guy ballooning up and exploding. Both clips were taken from a bootleg of Riki-Oh, giving the obscure Asian film mainstream recognition, leading to Tokyo Shock to get the rights to the film and release it in North America...

... Okay, on to the film. It's garbage. It's crap. It is a bad movie. But it is fun as hell to watch.
Being in college (for film, at that) in the 90's and a male, I think I observed some portion of a viewing of Riki-Oh around 6,842 times at various parties/gatherings. It was on a checklist of things you had to possess - and share, in large groups - in order to be that guy. There were lots of that guy.

That might be a good submission for a future LOC. Top 50 things necessary to be that guy in the 90's. But do we want a list that should have The Boondock Saints?

Amusing enough movie, though. Much better than The Boondock Saints.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2018, 08:33:35 PM by Charles Castle »
You know, if the space man puma thing turns out to be the correct religion, I for one will be very surprised.


Offline Johnny Unusual

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18308 on: November 06, 2018, 08:27:11 AM »
Riki-Oh is a great bad movie.  It was based on one of many comics born in the wake of the popularity of the ultra-violent Fist of the North Star.  The comic was never the biggest of successes, though apparently it was big enough to warrant a movie.  The creator had much more success with a series called Tough, which started in 1994 and continues to this day.  I wouldn't particularly recommend Tough either, though while it is still very violent, it is largely less over the top gory compared to his several Fist-style series.  But I have nostalgia for it because it and several other tough guy martial arts manga seemed to popular manga restaurants when I was living in Japan and gave me stuff to thumb through when eating alone.  I don't know why violent tough guy manga featuring characters with well-defined muscles was popular restaurant fare, but it was.


Offline Pak-Man

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18309 on: November 10, 2018, 04:34:41 PM »
Took my son to see The Grinch. It was better than I thought it would be. The message landed nicely and the additions were in the spirit of the original. They did a nice job with the Christmas stealing scene. Not sure about the conversion of Cindy-Lou Who from sweet naive girl to spunky tomboy, but it's nothing egregious.


Offline Darth Geek

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18310 on: November 11, 2018, 10:21:17 AM »
Took my son to see The Grinch. It was better than I thought it would be. The message landed nicely and the additions were in the spirit of the original. They did a nice job with the Christmas stealing scene. Not sure about the conversion of Cindy-Lou Who from sweet naive girl to spunky tomboy, but it's nothing egregious.
I second that. Unlike the 2000 movie, where everything they added was counter to the point of the book. If I would have gotten rid of anything, it would be the whole bit getting the reindeer. Just obvious padding.
But yeah, it was...cute. Still not nearly as good as the 1966 cartoon, though.

I still think the best thing to adapt these Seuss books would be to take a couple of them and make an anthology movie.



Offline Russoguru

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18311 on: November 11, 2018, 12:44:18 PM »
Let's just hope they don't deliver another movie made like either the theatrical versions of The Lorax or The Cat in the Hat.


Offline stethacantus

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18312 on: November 12, 2018, 12:45:36 AM »
This week, a couple of films from the same year.

Tower of Death ( a.k.a. Game of Death II ) ( 1981 )
Almost immediately after his death, rumors spread that there were still some unreleased Bruce Lee movies filmed just before he died. This may have been due to several projects Lee had been offered and was considering, a script he had written with James Coburn and Stirling Silliphant  called The Magic Flute, and the fact that Enter the Dragon had not yet been released. As it turned out, Lee had spent three months shooting a film for Golden Harvest called Game of Death., which he abandoned to do Enter the Dragon. Golden Harvest announced that the rumors were true, that  Bruce Lee had been working on a film for their studio, that it was near completion, and all they needed to do was find a double to shoot a few scenes that required Bruce Lee's character.  Perhaps Golden Harvest assumed Bruce Lee was almost done with his film because he had spent three months shooting in a closed set, more than twice as long as it took to shoot the average Hong Kong movie. But it turned out only about fifteen minutes of footage had been shot, all for the film's climax where Bruce Lee's character fights his way up a pagoda, facing a different martial arts master on each floor.

For the next five years Golden Harvest sat on the footage while two other studios who were leaked the script did their own versions starring Bruce Li and Bruce Le in attempts to fool Hong Kong audiences into believing they were both the unreleased Golden Harvest film. ( They even both had the iconic yellow tracksuit during the pagoda battle, which means it was more than just the script that was leaked. )  According to Bey Logan, Golden Harvest studio head Raymond Chow decided to scrap Bruce Lee's script once the clone films were released, and come up with a brand new plot. Not much of a problem considering none of the scenes leading up to the pagoda had been shot. The film was handed to Enter the Dragon director Robert Clause who came up with much of the new plot, along with solving the problem as to how to film the extra 90 minutes of movie leading up to the pagoda footage without Bruce Lee. His solution was to edit in footage from other Bruce Lee films for brief close ups, and for the rest of the time Bruce lee's character was on screen, to have the doubles in the shadows, shot from the back, sitting with his head behind a plant, or shot from a distance while wearing thick sunglasses that acted like a mask. Interacting with the doubles and stock footage was Colleen Camp, Gig Young, Dean Jagger, Hugh O'Brian, and stock footage of Chuck Norris from the ending fight of Way of the Dragon. Columbia Pictures financed the Robert Clause footage, but insisted that he cut a fight scene with Bruce Lee because the double's face could be seen. The fight took place at night in an unlit greenhouse using darkened Bruce Lee stock footage, and Clouse's assumption that the footage was dark enough that you couldn't really see the double's face clearly enough. Golden Harvest kept the footage in the Hong Kong release of the film, because despite Bruce Lee not actually being in it, it was a good screen fight

Once Game of Death was released it opened the door for shady film producers to put stock footage of Bruce Lee in their films and credit him as the star, the most notable example being Fist of Fear, Touch of Death ( 1980 ) which took stock footage from the series Longstreet to create a fake Bruce Lee interview, and footage from one of the movies he made when he was a kid to fake a Bruce Lee biography. In 1980 Warner Brothers turned over to Golden Harvest the footage they had edited out of Enter the Dragon, mostly extended parts of existing scenes, but in one case an entire deleted scene where Bruce Lee has a conversation with the abbot of the Shaolin Temple.  Eventually this footage would be edited back onto Enter the Dragon for an extended version, but back in 1980 Golden Harvest wondered if the then unreleased footage could be used to make a new Bruce Lee film. Or at least a film Bruce Lee could be credited as the star of.

Tower of Death was that film. The first half hour features a Bruce Lee double along with the deleted footage from Enter the Dragon for the close ups and establishing shots. The highlight of the movie was the two minute footage of Bruce Lee talking with the abbot. In Enter the Dragon they were talking about Han, the film's villain who was once a Shaolin monk who was expelled. In Tower of Death the scene was redubbed so that they are talking about Bruce Lee's brother who is studying at the temple and will later investigate and avenge his death. That's because so little Bruce Lee footage exists that his character needed to be written out of the film after 30 minutes.  When this movie was released in the United States it was decided it's best chance of making any money was to release it as a sequel to Game of Death and dub Bruce Lee's character as Billy Lo from that film. It was also decided that so little actual Bruce Lee footage was in the movie that more needed to be added so it could legally be released as a Bruce Lee starring vehicle. The extra footage came from films made as a child actor, which were presented as flashbacks to his childhood, but just to make sure the audience knew this was Bruce lee footage, had captions added noting this was Bruce Lee and his age. To extend the film a little more, footage of Bruce Lee in his coffin and his funeral was also added. Perhaps the most curios add to Game of Death II was the greenhouse fight deleted from the American version of Game of Death, perhaps to boost the running time of Bruce lee's character a little more.

You would think Tower of Death is a bad film, considering it has even less original footage as Game of Death, and it once again goes the rout of cutting between doubles with their face obscured and Bruce Lee stock footage. And yes, the first half hour is pretty dumb. But the film really takes off once the Bruce Lee character is killed off and it turns into an mystery/revenge film. The first half hour has Bruce Lee's character investigating the mysterious death of a friend, discovering an envelope he had left with his daughter. After Lee's death, his brother, Chen Kwok, finds that the envelope contains home movies of the dead friend and an American martial arts master named Lewis, who lives in a castle in China. Chen Kwok pays a visit to Lewis who eventually tells him of a lost tower built by a sect of monks that was built upside down with the floors underground so that no one could find it. It is in the lost Tower of Death that  Chen Kwok discovers those responsible for his brother's death.

Okay, maybe the film loses what little credibility it has when one of Lewis' pet lions jumps through the window and fights Chen Kwok in his bedroom.  It takes place in a dark room, but you can tell it is someone in a lion costume. And maybe the full potential of the Tower of Death is lost when after Chen Kwok finally finds it, he gets to it's bottom level via an elevator instead of fighting his way down. But the film was directed by Ng See-Yuen who also directed  the Secret Rivals films and Invincible Armour, as well as being the creative force behind many other martial arts classics, and was choreographed by Yuen Woo  Ping. Which means there are a lot of good fight scenes that don't deserve to be in this film. But elevate it to a very good action film once the nonsense of editing in the Bruce Lee footage is out of the way.

 

Zorro, The Gay Blade  ( 1981 )
1981 was probably the year I went to the movie theater the most. Nearly every Friday of that summer me and my friends would head off to the local multiplex for the novelty of watching a movie the day it came out, and not a week or two later after the plot had been spoiled by the couple of friends who had seen it. In the lobby of every theater was Moviegoer, a magazine that was in a rack with the sign "Free. Take one" above it. Of course we would take more than one, looking for mischievous ways to dispose of the extras on our way home. Moviegoer was full of articles promoting upcoming films. That is where I saw the article for a film called Zorro, the Gay Blade. It is then and there I decided I was never going to see that film. You could tell immediately from the title that the film makers thought the concept of a gay Zorro would be hilarious. But even back in 1981 the stereotypical homosexual was played out and wasn't really funny to begin with. Not that good material couldn't be found from homosexuality, such as  La Cage aux Folles, but the gay guy being funny just because he was gay I never found funny. Zorro, the Gay Blade was the sort of film title that shouted out "We couldn't think of anything funny, so instead we turned a straight character gay. Laugh it up!" I recall the movie getting mixed reviews, so some people still found the gay stereotype funny enough to be the joke in a one joke film. But at least half the critics confirmed what I though when I saw the article. That the movie sucked. I certainly wasn't going to see it in theaters back in 1981 ( especially since I had a lot better things I wanted to see, like Raiders of the Lost Ark  ) and the few times it came on television I had absolutely no interest in watching it. From there it just vanished from everything as one of the decades forgotten films.


37 years later I get to finally find out just how bad that film was. Because like it or not, Zorro, The Gay Blade is a Zorro film, and therefore counts as an American superhero film. At least I am going into this having already suffered through superhero films that are a lot worse than this could possible be.
It doesn't help that the first 20 minutes are unnecessarily confusing.

After a brief voiceover recap of the history of Zorro ( accompanied with stock footage taken from the Tyrone Power movie of Zorro attacking soldiers ), there is a screen caption that says "50 Years AZ ( After Zorro )".  The scene shifts to a bedroom in Barcelona, Spain where Don Diego is having sex with another man's wife, and ends up in a sword fight when the man shows up unexpected, along with four of his companions. Don Diego's mute servant barges in  to hand shim a note from his father recalling him to California. So Don Diego abandons the battle and returns home. He finds out his father, who was the region's Alcalde (  basically a governor ) had been killed in an accident, and his childhood friend who is currently Captain of the Guard, has taken over as the new Alcalde. Since this movie opened with the footage from the 1940 Mark of Zorro, the assumption is that this is sort of a sequel. Especially since that movie ended with Don Diego's father being made California's Alcalde after Zorro defeats the corrupt Alcalde and forces him to resign. However, the caption said this is taking place 50 years later. So how the hell hasn't Don Diego ages a day? He should be in his 70s now, and his father nearing 100, if not older. Instead Don Diego is being played by a then 42 year old George Hamilton acting like a man in his 20s. It isn't until Don Diego reads a letter from his dead father revealing that he was the original Zorro that you realize that the Don Diego in this movie is actually a Don Diego Jr., and the mute servant is not Zorro's trusty sidekick Bernardo, but another mute.  This confusion could have been avoided by an additional caption stating that George Hamilton was suppose to be Don Diego's son.


Don Diego Jr. receives a chest containing the Zorro costume, and the letter, which states that the elder Diego had twins, asks that the first one to read it take up the mantle of Zorro should oppression come back to the people of California. And it just so happens that the new Alcalde is doing just that.  Jr. thinks nothing of it, and decides to use the Zorro uniform as a costume to a ball he was invited to. But on the way to the ball he witnesses a tax collector harassing a poor farmer and fights him off, telling him to let the others know that Zorro is back. He arrives at the ball and ends up fighting the Alcalde's men. The new Zorro is triumphant, until he jumps out the window to escape and breaks his leg. Back at home he realizes Zorro can do nothing to help the people of California with a broken leg. Just then his gay twin brother arrives from England.  He shows him the letter and convinces him to become Zorro. But the brother insists on wearing colorful campy Zorro outfits and brandishing a whip. From there on the film plays out as a typical Zorro film, only with the gay brother as Zorro.


Some years ago I saw a Mel Brooks parody of Dracula, and was let down that it wasn't funny. ( or at least anywhere as funny as Yung Frankenstein ) But I did notice that it was a decent retelling of Dracula, and if anyone watching it didn't know it was suppose to be a comedy, would think they were watching a well made remake of the original. I had the same feeling about this film. As I predicted, I didn't find one thing funny. But  as a Zorro film it had a decent enough plot, as long as you overlook the bit about a gay brother. As such it was no worse than the Tyrone Power film. But it is a failed comedy. Made a bit worse by the cheapness of the producer who chose to reuse the score from The Adventures of Don Juan ( 1948 ) rather than pay for the composition of an original score.. Still, while useless and often insulting as a comedy, not a bad Zorro film.


« Last Edit: November 12, 2018, 09:22:47 AM by stethacantus »


Offline Johnny Unusual

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18313 on: November 12, 2018, 09:31:34 AM »


Some years ago I saw a Mel Brooks parody of Dracula, and was let down that it wasn't funny. ( or at least anywhere as funny as Yung Frankenstein ) But I did notice that it was a decent retelling of Dracula, and if anyone watching it didn't know it was suppose to be a comedy, would think they were watching a well made remake of the original. I had the same feeling about this film. As I predicted, I didn't find one thing funny. But  as a Zorro film it had a decent enough plot, as long as you overlook the bit about a gay brother. As such it was no worse than the Tyrone Power film. But it is a failed comedy. Made a bit worse by the cheapness of the producer who chose to reuse the score from The Adventures of Don Juan ( 1948 ) rather than pay for the composition of an original score.. Still, while useless and often insulting as a comedy, not a bad Zorro film.

If I had to guess, the positive elements probably comes from the creators really loving the source material.  Too bad the film makers are also apparently quite unfunny.


Offline RoninFox

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?
« Reply #18314 on: November 15, 2018, 07:37:21 PM »
Batman: The Return of the Caped Crusader

I remember liking the earlier DC Comics direct-to-video animated movies... up until I saw Justice League: War, which was largely not good (despite a pretty fun take on Wonder Woman). Since then I had no real strong desire to check up on them. But I decided to try this one on a whim. Though I get the appeal of the old Batman show, I have no strong nostalgia for it and I was afraid that this was mostly what it was going to be. It starts out as a pretty generic pastiche but then it gets wild in a way that's great. The middle section is the best, allowing Adam West to deliver Frank Miller dialogue (it's great) and showing us what an evil Adam West Batman would be like (re: delightful). The writers made a silly, goofy and at times surprisingly clever little story, even though the point is the bad guy's silly plots and clues are ludicrous.

Unfortunately, in being true to the old show, fights where Catwoman is present mostly consists of her standing off to the side and looking dreamy (or, in one instance, pretending to fight for some reason), though she does get a few moments. So despite a slow start, this one is actually pretty winning.

The sequel Batman VS Two Face was fun too, getting Adam West Batman to face a villain thought too scary for 60s TV, but now translated in a fun way into that style with William Shatner's voice.
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