Steven Spielberg

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Abulafia
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#26 Post by Abulafia » Sun Sep 04, 2005 8:00 pm

The Aviator is Scorsese struggling and Minority Report is Speilberg's masterpiece huh. :shock: ](*,)

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jorencain
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#27 Post by jorencain » Sun Sep 04, 2005 9:10 pm

Yeah, I just tried to watch "Minority Report" for the second time; attempting to give it another chance after the positive things people on here are saying. I had to stop at about 45 minutes. It's like an episode of any TV crime drama, only with a massive budget and set in the future. Obviously, there is nothing subtle about what's happening on-screen, and we are hand-held through the plot, in which there's nothing we haven't seen before. I really couldn't take it anymore, and had to stop it. I'm gonna go watch "Gangs of New York" instead. :twisted:

For the record (because I know everyone cares), I love "A.I.", and I think it's the best film Spielberg has made in a long time.
Last edited by jorencain on Sun Sep 04, 2005 9:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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lord_clyde
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#28 Post by lord_clyde » Sun Sep 04, 2005 9:10 pm

Spielberg has several materpieces. And yes, Minority Report is one of them. I thought the Aviator was one of the best films of last year though.

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Lino
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#29 Post by Lino » Mon Sep 05, 2005 3:52 am

I'm surprised noone so far has mentioned Spielberg's Duel which is by far his very best film and the only one of his that I can truly tolerate and ultimately enjoy every time I see it. In fact, I think he should have stopped making films right then and there. Now he seems to accumulate failure after failure.

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#30 Post by cdnchris » Mon Sep 05, 2005 10:24 am

I love Duel (and yeah, I love most of his other movies) but the one thing that always bugged me about it it was the fact the main character would always be talking to himself, saying his thoughts. That even bugged me when I was a kid. I'm assuming Spielberg did it because he didn't think the audience would have been able to take no dialogue through most of thing. All I know is it would have bothered me less.

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#31 Post by lord_clyde » Mon Sep 05, 2005 12:56 pm

Annie Mall wrote:I'm surprised noone so far has mentioned Spielberg's Duel which is by far his very best film and the only one of his that I can truly tolerate and ultimately enjoy every time I see it. In fact, I think he should have stopped making films right then and there. Now he seems to accumulate failure after failure.
He would also have about 80 billion dollars less to his name.

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godardslave
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#32 Post by godardslave » Mon Sep 05, 2005 2:24 pm

Annie Mall wrote:In fact, I think he should have stopped making films right then and there.
#-o

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Lino
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#33 Post by Lino » Tue Sep 06, 2005 3:23 am

godardslave wrote:#-o
"intelligent cinema discussion" indeed.

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King of Kong
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#34 Post by King of Kong » Tue Sep 06, 2005 3:43 am

cinephrenic wrote:Spielberg is a director, but not an auteur.
There are some that argue that Scorsese too has succumbed to Hollywood Hackdom.

Then again, "auteur" is quite a flimsy term. What are the qualifications, exactly? Can true auteurs really exist in a studio system, or at least in an American one? Do auteurs have to write their own scripts, like Bergman (I mean, Mizoguchi hardly wrote any of his own scripts, though his films have that distinctive stylistic "stamp" on them, in a way - and he had a longrunning scriptwriter - Yoda, whom he worked closely with, so...). Jeez, one could go on forever...

As for Spielberg himself, he tends to play it safe with big-budget (yet lucrative) "event" movies and crowd-pleasing mush. Schindler's List was good - one of Hollywood's better films of the 1990s - though it's not a masterpiece IMHO.

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Penny Dreadful
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#35 Post by Penny Dreadful » Tue Sep 06, 2005 4:45 am

I'm surprised noone so far has mentioned Spielberg's Duel which is by far his very best film and the only one of his that I can truly tolerate and ultimately enjoy every time I see it. In fact, I think he should have stopped making films right then and there. Now he seems to accumulate failure after failure.
Oh I agree with you so much! My copy of DUEL arrived just the other day. It's the only Speilberg movie I can tolerate, probably because it doesn't have one of those "feel sad NOW" wailing violin scores or a moral the whole family can appreciate. Instead it is a wonderful example of low budget, first feature filmmaking, similar in quality to Stranger Than Paradise and The Living End.

Just think, Speilberg could have been an Araki, a Jarmusch, a Hellman, even a Lynch... but something went wrong and he became the ultimate generic family-oriented hack.
Last edited by Penny Dreadful on Fri Sep 09, 2005 6:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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lord_clyde
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#36 Post by lord_clyde » Tue Sep 06, 2005 5:59 am

Just think, Speilberg could have been an Araki, a Jarmusch, a Hellman, even a Lynch... but something went wrong and he became the ultimate generic family-oriented hack.
Something went wrong alright, he made Jaws and half a dozen other great films.

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Fletch F. Fletch
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#37 Post by Fletch F. Fletch » Tue Sep 06, 2005 9:43 am

lord_clyde wrote:
Andre Jurieu wrote:For the record, I think Catch Me If You Can is his best film because it openly embraces everything he has been criticized for focusing on in the past, and in doing so he admits his own flaws and more importantly admits he's also a con-artist. It's his version of Goodfellas.
Well said. The best film by him since Schindler. For the record, I still think Raiders is my favorite. Not sure about his best, but certainly my absolute fave.
I would also like to second the praise for lord clyde's assessment of Catch Me If You Can which I would go so far as to say it's Spielberg's best film since Raiders, which is also my favorite Spielberg film with Close Encounters being a close second.

For years it seemed that Spielberg was trying too hard to get an Oscar, making all sorts of Academy-friendly movies (The Color Purple, Schindler's, Private Ryan, et al) and when he finally won I think it loosened him up as the pressure was finally off, he'd finally done it. I really like the loose, jazzy feel of Catch Me, right from the stunning opening credits which are such a treat to watch.

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blindside8zao
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#38 Post by blindside8zao » Wed Sep 07, 2005 6:22 pm

I am not a big Spielberg fan at all because 1. what everyone is saying about his plots, and 2. His visual compositions are rarely appealing or entertaining, at least in the films I have seen (I have not seen duel). Though I enjoyed War of the Worlds as a pop-corn flick I think he used the nice designs of the tripods to provide visual appeal instead of compositions. For example... I would find any five minutes of 8 1/2 far more visually appealing than any 5 minutes of WotW.

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Toshiro De Niro
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#39 Post by Toshiro De Niro » Tue Sep 13, 2005 3:42 pm

I love Catch me if you Can, A.I.,Jurassic Park,Saving Private Ryan,Schindler's List,Indiana Jones movies,E.T.,Close Encounters and Jaws- that's 11 movies from one director.

Many people only mention Spielberg and Scorsese as possibly the greatest living american directors. Nobody mentions Robert Altman...

BWilson
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#40 Post by BWilson » Tue Sep 13, 2005 4:52 pm

imiba wrote:Nobody mentions Robert Altman...
or Woody Allen

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justeleblanc
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#41 Post by justeleblanc » Tue Sep 13, 2005 7:58 pm

Is a Hollywood director the same as an American director? Is Spielberg really an American director?

Also, no one really mentions Eastwood either. And I'm not thinking of his newer films, but mainly Unforgiven and Madison County.

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Gordon
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#42 Post by Gordon » Thu Sep 15, 2005 2:59 am

Duel (1971)
Nerve-shredding, tightly edited minor masterpiece of the TV-movie
idiom. Excellent performance from Dennis Weaver.

Sugarland Express (1974)
This might actually be my favourite of his films. It's a tragic story and
isn't sentimental. Gorgeous Panavision cinematography by Vilmos
Zsigmond. Goldie Hawn's finest performance, I feel.

Jaws (1975)
Exilirating, seemingly timeless grade-A bubblegum yarn. Spielberg
was perhaps a little out of his depth on location and if ever
editing saved a movie, this is it. Wonderful performances by all
and one of the ultimate lessons in how music can elevate a film
to unimagined levels. The Indianapolis speech is one of Spielberg's
finest moments.

Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
A film that has fallen out of favour with me in recent years, but still
has significant charm and cinematic power. Again, John William is on
hand to elevate many scenes. Dreyfuss, coked up and a bit crazy, is
great to watch. Amazing special effects and cinematography. But, it
has a very flabby and disjointed narrative, especially in the DVD cut.

1941 (1979)
I haven't seen this for many years, but I recall a vague feeling of
bemusement and disappointment. Again, the narrative seemed to
drag and the plotting seemed quite confusing. I'd like to revisit the
fillm, though.

Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
Jones is a great character, no question and the first film is a lot
of fun. Convoluted story, but that adds to the charm, in a way.
Great score and editing.

E.T. (1982)
Beautiful film for people of all ages. Paradoxically, it's not as
sentimental as his 'more mature films', I feel.

Poltergeist (1982, Tobe Hooper)
For all intents and purposes, a Spielberg film, although his involvement
in the principle photography is still hotly disputed. Helluva film; scared
the shit out of me back in '88 on late-night TV. A technical marvel
with stunning lighting and in-camera special effects.

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)
A very crazy ride. Ford is too much fun, as ever and there several
gutsy setpieces.

The Color Purple (1985)
I have not seen this film

Empire of the Sun (1987)
The first Spielberg film I saw in a theater when I was seven years old. I
haven't seen it since then. I recall loving it, even though much of the plot
went over my head.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
Again, great fun. It's a joy to watch Ford and Connery slag each other
off. More Nazis, which is always great.

Always (1989)
Sentimental hogwash. I haven't seen I Guy Named Joe, but I'm
sure that Victor Fleming did a better job than this.

Hook (1991)
I have not seen this film

Jurassic Park (1993)
Landmark special effects film. Nothing more, nothing less.

Schindler's List (1993)
Amazingly, I have not seen this film. No, I'm not a Skinhead.

The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)
I have not seen this film

Amistad (1997)
I have not seen this film

Saving Private Ryan (1998)
Absurd plot. I hate WWII films that have stories like this.
Abysmally corny and manipulative ending. The opening is a technical
triumph, but I store it in the same drawer as Jeebus' whuppin' in
The Passion.

Artificial Intelligence: AI (2001)
What a cluttered mess. A futuristic version of Pinocchio? A robotic
gigolo?! Family entertainment? Based on Kubrick story? Stylistically, it
feels flat and sterile to me - maybe that was the point. Horrid ending.
Hard to imagine the sardonic genius of Kubrick producing a film like
this, but there you go.

Minority Report (2002)
I have not seen this film

Catch Me If You Can (2002)
A great story, but a few scenes feel rushed and DiCaprio's
characterization has little depth. But it moves along well
but feels like a minor, detached project from Spielberg.

The Terminal (2004)
I have not seen this film. The story sounds impossibly dull, though.

War of the Worlds (2005)
Hggggghh. Why? Why?

Munich (2006)
His next film is about a Mossad(?) agent going after the assassins of
the Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics. Give me strength.

Lincoln (2007)
Presumably a run-of-the-mill Hollywood biopic on the 'other' famous
assassinated President. Liam Neeson will play Abraham Lincoln. Good
actor. I can't picture him with that legendary beard - it may be mocked
by the likes of me, but that's par for the course when Hollywood Egos
play historical figures.


Overall, I have gained a lot of pleasure over the years from
Spielberg's films. I love his Seventies films the most but he has
made a lot of pretentious films that are not balanced by their
mawkish sentimentality. But overall, I think he's alright. As a person
he drives up the wall. That Shoah thing he put together was admirable
but he shouldn't bring it up in interviews. He made a cunt of himself on
German TV this year when he appeared with that master of cuntery,
Mr Tom Cruise, when he tried to compare Cruise's promoting of
Scientology to his work with Shoah - wise up, Steve.

His aesthetic can be beautiful, in a Norman Rockwell way. His
main 'strengths' are, in fact provided by his collaborators, such as
John Williams and the innovative cinematographers he has worked
with over the years. Star actors grace all his films. His Seventies films
are the better for this, but his recent films have suffered by this. It will
be interesting to see he handles a powerhouse like Liam Neeson.

I feel that he is an easy target on the Internet and a lot of the haters
cannot be objective about and resort to feeble arguments, slanted
towards his weaker films and he has a few, but overall, he has
deserved his success. Greatest American filmmaker alive today? No,
but he's no hack. I always have to check myself when I am about to
put up David Cronenberg as "the Greatest American filmmaker alive
today"! But he is, dammit.

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ben d banana
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#43 Post by ben d banana » Thu Sep 15, 2005 3:35 am

Except Cronenberg is Canadian and still lives and works in the country. Hell, I just found out an acquaintance (a friend's sister) is his assistant of the past couple years.

And I think it's pretty safe to say the lion's share of Spielberg's output up to the mid-80's were not star vehicles, although they surely didn't hurt the careers of Ford and Barrymore in particular.

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Gordon
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#44 Post by Gordon » Thu Sep 15, 2005 4:16 am

I was well aware of Mr Cronenberg's nationality when I typed that shit!

Most of SS's 80s films were not as you say "Star Vehicles", but they
still featured big 'name' actors. He never takes a gamble with his
casting.

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#45 Post by lord_clyde » Thu Sep 15, 2005 6:22 am

Gordon McMurphy wrote:I was well aware of Mr Cronenberg's nationality when I typed that shit!

Most of SS's 80s films were not as you say "Star Vehicles", but they
still featured big 'name' actors. He never takes a gamble with his
casting.
So, did you mean Cronenberg is better than any American director? Or do you mean he's the best NORTH American director?

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Gordon
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#46 Post by Gordon » Thu Sep 15, 2005 8:38 am

What I mean, is that I often forget than Cronenberg is Canadian. But
seeing as he little competition in Canada, I can only compare him
against his American contemporaries. It was a rather flip remark
by me. Again. :?

He's the boldest English language filmmaker alive today who
'works in the mainstream'. Yeah, that's better.

Back to Spielberg's "Cinema of loneliness", as Robert Kolker
defines it...

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The Invunche
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#47 Post by The Invunche » Thu Sep 15, 2005 1:55 pm

Gordon, please stop using the enter key when you type your posts. The board will do it for you.

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Billy Liar
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#48 Post by Billy Liar » Thu Sep 15, 2005 2:36 pm

Gordon McMurphy wrote: Schindler's List (1993)
Amazingly, I have not seen this film. No, I'm not a Skinhead.

Yes because all skinheads are racist. Before spouting such generalizations at least be fully aware of the cultures history. Skinhead Attitude]Here's a link you may find interesting.

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The Invunche
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#49 Post by The Invunche » Thu Sep 15, 2005 2:55 pm

Oh please. Most skinheads certainly are.

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Billy Liar
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#50 Post by Billy Liar » Thu Sep 15, 2005 3:00 pm

The Invunche wrote:Oh please. Most skinheads certainly are.
Says who the media. :lol: Try typing skinhead reggae into Amazon etc, it's all very intresting. I've made my point if you wish to carry this on via PM them please feel free to contact me. Sorry about going OT.

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