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Ambush (2023)

Ambush (2023)

Vietam, 1966. Soldiers and tunnels.

Reminds me a bit of Tunnel Rats, but less glorified.

In the end... is it just about justifying the sacrifice? About making the warrior feel better about his dead friends? That they did everything they did for nothing, when they could just as well have blown up the tunnels and all lived to see another day - at least theoretically?

The end seems disappointing, even if the words are poetic, and the greenhorn soldier growing up at the cost of life... what's the use in that?

It's a movie dedicated to the 58,000 Americans who died during the Vietnam war. But for what. If it's for something like this it doesn't seem worthwhile at all. If the movie attempts to make their fight seem like the finest form of patriotism they do a bad job, and if that's not what they made it for then for what?

The war's over. Why add further burn and sorrow.

The action's not bad, and early on the soundtrack's inspiring - so much dissonance, but we lose that along the way, with the motive; with the war.

It looks good but it's no Hamburger Hill. It's a slaughter without reason, where 'without reason' seems an attempt at making it have one. There's just something really... missing, with this.

 rated 3/5: not bad

As Good As It Gets (1997)

As Good As It Gets (1997)

A single mother and waitress, a misanthropic author, and a gay artist form an unlikely friendship after the artist is assaulted in a robbery.

Though Jack Nicholson always seem to become the creep of creeps in his roles... this was such a feelgood movie!

An unconventional love movie, about a lonely mother and a renowned author with... certain social issues and elements of OCD - though I do feel like there oughta have been more than the soap stockpile to show for this in his apartment. His behavioral quirks don't always go all the way - and during the latter part of the movie that makes sense - when love hits him and throws him off course a bit, but initially. Could've had more of that.

He starts off not the most likable person, but when his queer (as he calls him) neighbor's dog ends up in his house after said neighbor's been brutally assaulted by the friends of a guy he was trying to paint (loose end there too - though maybe it just makes things all the more authentic)... well then things start changing. He finds kindness. He starts to bond.

The dog's diet post veterinarian visit's a loose end too btw. I'm really not sure all that cake was good for him.

But it's a feelgood movie still. No frills. Good acting. Real people.

It's not the type of movie I expected to get into this much but it really was pretty special. It's refreshingly real and uncompromising, and I know I've heard that 'queer party friends' sample used in some serious musical bop.

Great watch.

 rated 4.5/5: almost awesome

Tabu (1988)

Tabu (1988)

It's an age old tale, from an old age.

A young girl falls in love with the man - or maybe the man with the girl - maybe it's mutual. The man leaves, the girl waits, the man doesn't come back. The girl's pregnant, she gets a coin to remember the man by but that's all there is, and she needs someone to support her and the baby...

Is there a religious message here, maybe? Not sure.

The story feels older than it is, yet the movie feels newer.

Neither quality nor depiction of the story feels old at all. It's cold and real and gripping, and in depicting an old time as it does it feels like it could've been filmed at basically any time. But it's clear and crisp and looks newer.

It also reminds me of Carrie, with the innocence without outlet... and then they just let it all burn down.

It's not quite that drastic here, but you know, same feel. Authentic. Thought it'd be more sultry but... it was unexpectedly innocent instead.

All the more feeling then.

It's a Polish movie too, and from what I've seen so far they're good with that too. I'd just seen the Pitbull movies before this, and they're brutal in a way this one definitely isn't, but both of them: real.

 rated 4/5: fo shizzle

May The 4th!

Hey hey! It's that day today! Aim for the stars all. Go far /stall.


Hancock (2008)

Hancock (2008)

Here's that movie of that super-hero has-been! The drunk immortal. The Will Smith one. The one with the world against him, where he meets a PR guy set on making the world a better place, ready to help him on his path to redemption...

It has a killer twist along the way too. Maybe if you were a woman you'd get clued in early - I certainly didn't!

I also really didn't expect the You should sue McDonalds cause they fucked you up line! How did they get away with that in a movie like this.

I'm impressed. It's a small thing, but still. Seems to reflect how much Hancock just doesn't care at the start of the movie, but in the end...

Well you'll see. You can guess I expect. But even then it still is one bad-ass movie. Of the unconventional hero - the one with the world against him even though he really could take on the whole world.

I guess he kinda does too, for starters...

Overall this a refreshingly different and sick (in the best possible way) superhero flick.

 rated 4.5/5: almost awesome

Die Spalte (1971)

Die Spalte (1971)

AKA Making Of A Prostitute.

A teenager lays a small bundle on the tracks, but before the oncoming train can cross it, an older woman saves the baby from certain death. She keeps little Sophie with her and raises her to be a well-behaved girl...

...but then the old lady dies, and that girl's taken from her home, and she learns firsthand that the world's not all sun and roses after all.

Sophie (the teenager) is played by Gerhild Berktold - a relatively unknown actress who starred in just this and one other movie - but she was great here. There's a review by one of her kids on IMDB:

I have only watched this movie once, but when I watched it, it was amazing. My mother is the main actress, Gerhild Berktold. She did not let us, her children, watch the movie, until she thought we were mature enough to see it. The brutality of the situation that Sophie is put in, in the movie, is extremely realistic. Yes, there is violence, aggression, nudity, sex, drugs...all of that. But that was the situation of those times, and a very realistic portrayal.
This movie is hard to come across nowadays. If you do, please enjoy it, and know that the woman in that movie has turned out to be the most amazing woman and the best mother I could have ever asked for.

I'm glad she has a family. Glad she's alright. I wonder how I'd feel about either of my parents being in a movie like this, and if I'd ever review it...

I am glad one of her children did, though! It makes the story all the more interesting somehow. Makes her real. Ties to reality.

The movie ends abruptly, but they're right. It's harsh, but realistic. Desperate.

I wondered if it was riding on the hippie wave of the time for a moment, when the teenagers were all gathered in the same room playing guitar; jiving along; for the brief moment when Sofie really seemed happy... but in the end maybe hippie or no hippie's irrelevant.

It seems to take a stance against not authority, but against wrong.

It reaches no definitive answer, no kind fate, but you're left hopeful things turn out alright in the end.

And at least for the main actress it seems it did! In real life.

It was not at all what I expected, but it was good, a nuanced yet unassuming portrayal of a young girl and her struggle.

A rare and right glimpse of the times, and of life.

 rated 4/5: fo shizzle

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