Hype Movie Club

Still need to get to The Deer Hunter myself, but I just watched Sorcerer and it is pretty damn gripping. It does not care about your feelings at all. I saw the original Clouzot joint The Wages of Fear years back. From what I remember, I think they may be about neck and neck, but Sorcerer has this harsh 70s vibe that enhances the texture of the elemental entrapments. It's very, very good.
 
There's also a brand-new French remake of The Wages of Fear on Netflix, it came out like two weeks ago. Terrible reviews. Nevertheless, I think I'll watch it after I'm done with Sorcerer and maybe a rewatch of the original.
 
Star Wars killed Sorcerer.
I have the wages of fear on blu ray, but havent gotten around to watching it yet, might watch it today if it's that good. and then get sorcerer on blu ray too.
 
Alien (1979)

“I got you...you son of a b*tch.”

One of three Ridley Scott films on my all-time favourites list (for the record, the others are Gladiator and Thelma & Louise), what's left to say about this classic? I did an Alien re-watch this past rainy Friday afternoon while I had some time to kill waiting for the workday to end, and I realized I enjoy this film more and more each time I see it...

I'll just post some random observations:

As @Link and @Luigi both said, the film continues to look fantastic. I'm always struck by how timeless the movie looks and feels upon each re-watch. Sure the futuristic setting should be given some credit, but the Nostromo is just so beautifully realized that the film looks like it could have been released this past weekend. And all of this with just practical effects!

This is easily one of the 'wettest' movies ever made in any genre. I can't recall a single scene without some kind of moisture, whether it be sweat pouring down the actors' faces, 'milk' spewing out of humanoid androids, or the constant presence of 'rain' in dank, dirty alien caves or spaceship hulls. All of this moisture makes sense of course, considering the film's 'birthing' theme. Madonna once famously sang about how "inside, we're all still wet" but of course she was talking sexual imagery. The themes of gestation and procreation are as strong as they are in Alien due to the brilliant set design. I hope the new Alien Romulus remembers this...

Speaking of the 'birthing' theme, who can forget everyone's favourite chest-bursting scene? Aside from working on a purely visceral level, the scene is particularly loaded due to the victim being male. Can you imagine a scene like this in today's political climate, with a man being the recipient of an unwelcome birthing act??

All in all an enduring, timeless horror classic. I'm hoping to get around to Aliens at some point this month. I haven't watched Cameron's sequel nearly as many times as the original, which is an almost criminal omission on my part...


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Never seen this one in full, most of what I've seen about it has been from YouTube reviews.

Let's do this.
 
I love Alien. It’s a claustrophobic horror classic. And can I just say that Tom Skerritt is one of the most underrated actors of all time. What is it about that man? He exudes leadership and quiet strength in his roles and is perfect at playing the military leader like he does here or in Top Gun, or as the police chief in Picket Fences, or as the father and pastor in A River Runs Through It.

Had I not been spoiled on this film (I was really young when it first came out and I didn’t actually watch it all the way through until after I’d seen the sequel) I would’ve probably expected him to end up being the hero who defeated the xenomorph
 
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Saw Alien again recently in 4K. For me it scratches the same itch as Carpenter’s The Thing. Creates atmosphere and tension with ease. Primal anxiety felt from uncertainty and helplessness. When those lights start flashing and alarms start going off during the final sequence knowing an Alien could be right around any corner, I just felt paralyzed. I don’t have much else to add to the conversation. Alien is peak science fiction and peak horror.

The 4K disc is crazy. It’s never looked so good.

10/10
 
Since I've already revisited most of the Alien series recently in various ways, I'll just repost/rewrite some of my thoughts:

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Alien

A true timeless sci-fi and horror classic that helped usher in a new wave of sci-fi and horror films. I feel like it often gets mixed up with Cameron's Aliens in several ways when people think back about this series but both films could not be more different. Ridley Scott's film runs on pure atmosphere and unnerving dread and they brilliantly do a great job showing but not explaining everything right away. The mystery works way more than most movies and it also works on a rewatchable level which is sometimes hard for a movie that is a pure mystery. This also operates as a slasher which is interesting and between The Night of the Living Dead, this, and The Thing, they all have a great ensemble cast of very different personalities clashing with each other. Sigourney Weaver is so good in this and commands the screen every time she's on. It's also hard not to think of all the influences this movie had on not just cinema but every sci-fi video game that's come across in the last 20+ years between Halo and Dead Space. Overall, it's one of the foundational movies that really shaped how I view horror and what I really like about seeing a movie or show that knows how to create a moody atmosphere and take your time doing it.
5/5
 
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Aliens

A phenomenal sequel that everyone in the movie industry should still learn from. Cameron does the smart thing of expanding the world of the original by not repeating the same formula and instead changing up the genre almost entirely. Where Ridley's Alien was a pure horror mystery, this was a pure action thriller that explores different ideas and themes like the military-industrial complex. I really liked how it explores more into the Xenomorphs while still keeping the mystery somewhat alive. Giving this almost double the budget gives way more freedom to show more but it gives Stan Winston and his crew more time to play around with the effects and how they used the Xenomorphs. I will say my only minor grip (because I love Ridley's Alien so much) is because this is more of an action film and there are so many of them coming at once, they don't really give us the same Xenomorphs feeling with the constant dread and it turned into watching someone playing an arcade game when they're taken out. That being said, this does a great job with the characters and making it feel like a cinematic blockbuster. Sigourney Weaver becomes elevated as the badass action hero we all know and love. Overall, while it is weird for me to say as a Cameron disciple that I prefer the original over this, it's still a series where the sequel becomes as influential and impactful as the original (if not more) which rarely happens anymore.
5/5
 
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Alien 3 (Assembly Cut)

Finally saw it and I guess I'm a Alien 3 apologist... at least with this cut. As much as it sucks for them to kill off Newt and Hicks, I did like how it was used to fuel Ripley's motivations. That first hour was really well done and I really dug the prison set up along with the storyline with the prisoners. For David Fincher, his directing was pretty good and I love his choices aesthetically, it really meshes well with the rest of the 90s. Also it might be a controversial thing to say, but I did like the Xenomorph return to form to the original in terms of horror and it was more menacing and smart over the Xenomorphs in Aliens... where they made them mostly simple creatures that the Marines shot up except for the Queen (not saying it's bad thing either). If I had any complaints, it would probably be the ending. I would've liked more time with the Weyland–Yutani team & Bishop.
4.5/5
 
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Alien Resurrection


A mostly below average slasher/creature feature masquerading as a Alien sequel. Almost every move this movie makes feels like it came from a fanfic who desperately wanted to undo Ripley's death and mimic some bad slashers. Not surprising this came from Joss Whedon because from the pirate crew that shows up in the movie feels like a prototype version of his Firefly show except almost everyone is annoying. It's got a great cast which is a shame that the writing isn't as sharp as the previous films. The directing is kinda there and I will say there are a few scenes that I enjoyed that almost evens it out. Overall, while it's pretty bad-mediocre, it's still nowhere near as bad as AVP2.
2/5
 
And as for Prometheus, I feel like that one I need to rewatch it because I really don't know how I feel about it and I only saw it that one time when it came out.

and with Alien: Covenant you can read my review here (shameless plug):

 
So uh Zardoz was interesting…

Kind of a mix of Flash Gordon, Greek Mythology and Planet of the Apes. There’s a race of humans called Brutals and another called Eternals. It’s a story of sociological control which I greatly admired even if the execution isn’t the greatest. It’s unfortunately trying to juggle way too many other ideas. The acting is appropriately corny. Most of the costumes/sets are also really cheap and you can tell this movie had no budget. Overall a curious Sci-fi oddity, but not something I’d watch again.
 
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Zardoz

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Whether it's this film or Dune, Charlotte Rampling is always trying to maintain control over a certain population. Girl has her priorities straight.

What a truly bizarre, beautifully photographed film. Mostly consists of Sean Connery running around, looking confused, with a heaping amount of penile references. Can't say that I was ever bored, was truly a fascinating experience.

Really hope you guys get a chance to watch this.
 
Zardoz

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Whether it's this film or Dune, Charlotte Rampling is always trying to maintain control over a certain population. Girl has her priorities straight.
Totally missed this. I thought she looked familiar.
 
Zardoz

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Whether it's this film or Dune, Charlotte Rampling is always trying to maintain control over a certain population. Girl has her priorities straight.

What a truly bizarre, beautifully photographed film. Mostly consists of Sean Connery running around, looking confused, with a heaping amount of penile references. Can't say that I was ever bored, was truly a fascinating experience.

Really hope you guys get a chance to watch this.

The literal 1st line spoken in the movie really sets the tone for what you're in for lol! I have always been confused by Connery agreeing to this. He just looks baffled the whole time and it's clear to me he doesn't get it, and he is in that ridiculous costume like the whole movie. How in the world did they get him, lol! Be like Arnold doing a David Lynch movie in the 80s
 
Oddly enough Connery’s baffling expressions worked in the story’s favor. The problem is including way too much into such a short runtime. By the third act I was totally checked out.
 
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Sorcerer

That one shirtless South American dude who was trolling Roy Scheider as he was driving the truck, A+

After wanting to watch this for the better part of a decade, I've finally seen it and it really lives up to the hype. This was an incredible job by William Friedkin who managed to make a slow-burn nail-biter of a survival action thriller that centers around a ragtag group of guys who all came to this mission under very different circumstances. I thought it was interesting how the film structures each story without really knowing where it ultimately leads, they almost feel like vignettes of different movies that came together. Roy Scheider probably gets the most out of the movie compared to all the other characters in terms of story and character moments and he's fantastic in it as always. It's ultimately a movie that becomes man vs man vs nature with a little helping of self. The jungle scenes where they are transporting extremely volatile dynamite is where the film really levels up and the rainy bridge scene is unlike anything other just from a practical filmmaking level. Because it's Friedkin, I also did like some of the odd flourishes with some of the imaginary, especially toward the end. Also, Tangerine Dream did a great job with the score. Overall, truly underrated when it comes to 70s cinema and it's a damn shame it got overshadowed by Star Wars.
4.5/5

Oh yeah. That was cinema.
 
How in the world did they get him, lol! Be like Arnold doing a David Lynch movie in the 80s
Did some digging and found this
Sean Connery took the role of Zed largely out of desperation and a lull in the actor's career. It had been a few years since he appeared in Diamonds Are Forever, and audiences began to forget about Connery's 007 role. This left him in an unfortunate predicament.

Director John Boorman managed to score Connery for the role for a mere $200,000 dollars, which would have been unheard of at a later point in his career.
 
I'm very glad most are seeing 'Sorcerer' as the masterpiece that it is. Star Wars buried this film, but it has a passionate following. Also, the orignal two main leads were Steve McQueen and Marcello Mastroianni. McQueen wanted his then wife to be in the movie, Friedkin refused, so Mcqueen quit. Mastroianni only wanted to work with McQueen, so he quit. Friedkin regretted this for the rest of his career.
 
Zardoz took me a few days to process. I don't know if I liked it per se, but it was an interesting watch and I'm happy such an oddball film got the largest amount of votes this month. It was a little bit funny how visibly uncomfortable Sean Connery looked for extended portions of the film, this doesn't seem like something he'd particularly be into. That costume... A dream for some, a nightmare for many. The opening is stupendous, five star material. I adored the surreal visual of Zardoz zooming through the skies, the special effects are excellent. It is downhill from there, but the film is audacious and visually interesting enough to hold attention. As it plunges further and further into surrealism I think the film loses itself a little bit, but it's held together by some excellent performances, particularly Charlotte Rampling's commanding presence.

John Boorman is 0/2 as far as I'm concerned with the way he depicts sexual violence. The story and world of Zardoz has a stronger point of view for it than Deliverance, but I still find Boorman's approach flippant for such a scary thing. Still, it's a worthy watch and I'll revisit it one day (particularly since I now own it on DVD) and perhaps I'll find myself deeper in its themes and eccentricities.

We ended up having an accidental Charlotte Rampling double feature with my friend, since Zardoz was followed up by Angel Heart. Loved that one, even if it took me disastrously long to recognize Mickey Rourke. I'm more familiar with the more recent work he's done... and had done.
 

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