Saw a Takashi Miike picture called The Great Yokai War. "Yokai" is a Japanese term for monsters from folklore, as opposed to the more familiar kaiju. It's a kids' picture, about a young boy from Tokyo sent out to live in the countryside with his older sister and his intermittently senile grandfather. When a vengeful spirit appears, the boy gets caught up in a war between warring groups of yokai and must find his courage to become the "Kirin Rider", the hero who will set everything to rights. It's not a bad picture - nothing deep, but an amusing story. Some of the yokai are really trippy, Japanese folklore can get pretty "out there", apparently.

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PIRANHA, PIRANHA (1972): "Two wildlife photographers are traveling through the Anazon River basin on their latest assignment. While trying to capture the wildlife of the area on film, our photographers cross paths with a game hunter, who is stalking the animals for another reason. Looking to eliminate the witnesses to his illegal activities, the hunter decides to hunt the photographers in order to silence them."

Not that it makes all that much of a difference, but the two photographers are siblings (brother and sister), plus they have a guide. They hook up with perennial "Hey, it's that guy!" actor William Smith, who plays the villain, Caribe. I don't think Caribe decided to kill the others to silence them for witnessing his illegal activities, unless that means his rape of the sister and murder of the brother.

I remember seeing a TV movie about piranha in the '70s, but I don't this this is it. Granted, I don't remember much about that movie other than the piranha (I guess you could say I went the a "piranha phase" in my youth), but the word wasn't even mentioned until 55 minutes into the film, and the only only piranha attack occurs about ten minutes from the end.* Toward the end, the villain reveals that "Caribe" means "piranha" in the native language, so I guess the movie's title is accurate... "from a certain point of view" (as Obi Kenobi would say). 

*Oh! And it's not even the bad guy, it's the brother. [See silhouette below: Caribe stabs him with a machete (in his right hand), then pushes him in.] Caribe himself is killed by a crocodile, after the sister shoots him. Whoops... SPOILER ALERT

I have a dim memory of piranhas being a bit of a "thing" around that period.

William Smith and Peter Brown were in Laredo together.

Captain Comics said:

PALE BLUE EYE

Watched this for Poe, and wouldn't you know it that he was the best part in it. He's played by Henry Melling, an odd-looking fellow who was Beth Harmon's first bf in Queen's Gambit. It's not heavy-handed, but you can imagine Poe getting ideas for "The Tell-Tale Heart," "Lenore," "Pale Blue Eye," Auguste Dupin, etc., from this adventure. Melling plays the role with a Southern drawl, which I guess is possibly true for early 19th century Baltimore (where Poe was from), but it took me by surprise.

I have moved Pale Blue Eye to the top of my to-be-watched list.

From Den of Geek

The Real Murder Mystery That Inspired "The Cask of Amontillado"

Story

This may explain his having a Southern accent. Wikipedia tells me that Edgar Poe adopted his middle name Allan because the Allan family of Virginia took him in at a very young age after the death of his mother. He was with them into young adulthood and briefly attended the University of Virginia. *  Prior to West Point, at 18, he enlisted in the Army. He had lied about his name and age. At 20 years old, after rising to the rank of sergeant major(!), he used the earlier lies to get kicked out of the Army. He was already a published poet at this point. While assigned to Fort Independence, Massachusetts, he heard the story that inspired The Cask of Amontillado. He was pushed to attend West Point when leaving the Army. After a time, sick of the military academy, he purposely stopped all required activity so he would be expelled.

* Baltimore is below the Mason-Dixon line. Lincoln did everything he could to keep Maryland from seceding, which would have meant that Washington would have been an island surrounded by the Confederacy.

THE PHANTOM CREEPS (1939): First of all I confirmed that "phantom" is a noun and "creeps" is a verb. (I thought "phantom" might have been an adjective and "creeps" a noun, but no.) When Checkov's gun appeared in the form of a giant robot two minutes into the movie Tracy commented, "I can already tell this is going to be awesome!" At one point, she said, "This is where a serial would end the chapter," which reminded me that this is a serial spliced together. I like movie serials, but sometimes I like the "movies" created from them as well. The comic book version of this was recently parodied by Sham! Comics

GREEN KNIGHT: This was such a weird movie that my wife and I are still trying to figure it out.

It uses the bare bones of the 14th century epic poem, but makes a lot of swerves. The original is questionable enough; its meaning or meanings are still in contention. The movie introduces a whole new set of motivations and actions whose meanings aren't obvious. It had us thinking hard the next day trying to sort out metaphors, but mostly it left us puzzled. I'm tempted to re-read the original to see if the changes help me understand either work.

An unrecognizable Alicia Vikander (Tomb Raider, Ex Machina) plays two roles. 

Mildly recommended.

EVERYTHING, EVERYWHERE ALL AT ONCE: Given the reviews of this, I expected to be blown away. But mostly I had a "OK, that happened" response.

I did like the parts when character would fly through various parallel universes in quick succession (much faster than Doctor Strange 2), where I could only pick up bits. That was enough to give the impression of what was happening, and occasionally I'd see something pretty funny. And Michelle Yeoh is always watchable.

But mother-daughter estrangement, which plays a central role here, is a cliche. It wasn't interesting and grew tiresome as it was dragged out through the whole movie to the inevitable resolution I assumed in the first reel. Also, Mom and Grandpa were having trouble accepting Daughter's homosexuality, but it's 2023 and you know how that's going to turn out. That's two main themes where I felt no dramatic tension.

There were some parts that made me laugh, like the hot-dog-handed people. It was fun seeing Jamie Lee Curtis in multiple variations of the same role (sometimes in a fat suit), whose name was Diedre Beaubiedre (banana-fanna-fo-fiedre, fee fi mo miedre, Diedre). And Ke Huy Quan, who played Short Round in his last movie, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. (He's all grown up now.) 

Mildly recommended.

I would pay good money for a Phantom Creeps that was adjective-noun. For some reason I imagine a gang of invisible jerks all played by Michael Richards committing pointless acts of petty vandalism.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

THE PHANTOM CREEPS (1939): First of all I confirmed that "phantom" is a noun and "creeps" is a verb. (I thought "phantom" might have been an adjective and "creeps" a noun, but no.) When Checkov's gun appeared in the form of a giant robot two minutes into the movie Tracy commented, "I can already tell this is going to be awesome!" At one point, she said, "This is where a serial would end the chapter," which reminded me that this is a serial spliced together. I like movie serials, but sometimes I like the "movies" created from them as well. The comic book version of this was recently parodied by Sham! Comics

I think I wrote about this movie on this thread once already. (Who can read this whole thread?!??). What I vaguely remember is that Ursula Andress, as usual, had the acting skills of a turnip, and that the casual racism was really distracting. That may be a modern reaction, but I might have felt that way in 1965, too. I think we were supposed to be shocked when one of the white characters (She) had not-so-nice intentions, since throughout the movie the subtext was white=good and black/brown=bad. Since I wasn't shocked (and vaguely knew the plot from decades of magazine references to She), the movie kinda fell flat for me.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

Thanks, JD, but I'm not interested in seeing the film. (I'm not even particularly interested in the album.)

SHE (1965): Last night we got distracted by the 1935 RiffTrax version, but this is the version we set out to watch. It is a Hammer studios film starring Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, as well as Ursula Andress as "She Who Must Be Obeyed." It also reunites (or "unites" maybe) Cushing with Bernard Cribbins from the Doctor Who and the Daleks movie. Although there is also an "unofficial" sequel as well as a 1911 version (both of which we may also watch), I think it's safe to say that this is the definitive screen version.

Skipping.

Travis Herrick (Modular Mod) said:

I watched Top Gun: Maverick, the other day. I feel like I have been pranked by the world. It isn't a terrible movie, but I also wouldn't say it was good. I had a couple of friends who paid to see it twice, which blows my mind. If you have ever seen an action movie, you have seen this.

Very skippable.

"I would pay good money for a Phantom Creeps that was adjective-noun."

I was thinking of a medical condition, as in: "He has a bad case of the Phantom Creeps."

From another discussion:

Luke Blanchard said:

I think this issue is the source of the adaptation Jeff described hereMovie Comics (1939) was a tie-in comic that told the stories of movies going into release by a combination of stills and comics-style captions and dialogue. The issues also carried some drawn content, but not movie adaptations. It's counted as a DC comic, but was from the Max Gaines stable. It appeared for six issues.

CLUE: Tracy is reading some book that ties in with the Parker Bros. game somehow, which put her in the mood to watch the 1985 movie tonight. She had seen it before, but remembered practically nothing about it. Not  obnly had I never seen the movie, I've played the board game only once in my life. The movie was cute, though. 

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