leplatypus

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Astrid et Raphaëlle: Fulcanelli
(2020)
Episode 5, Season 1

The best FRENCH tv show since ... well forever ! (tv)
I like when life opens me new ways to walk into: it's always unforgettable as it doesn't happen often and it's always remarkable as it plays on very little things that i could have missed entirely for a few minutes sooner or later. My passions are thus like the butterfly effect...

So here, it all begun with Sara being invited on the french public morning show Télématin as i wake up with this live. At once, I connected because I always fall for calm, charm & fragility and the character Sara was talking about seems weird.. So i took notice of this new cop show just before french confinement that started Tuesday 17 March.

Those 1st days of staying home were really hard for me and so I was happy this Friday 20 March to switch on my TV for Episode 3 and indeed this show was very cool: clean production, good story, real Parisian feeling and for sure great characters played with talent. Now i understood why Astrid looks strange and this is the kind of characters I like to follow: good heart, full of mannerism, so engaging and original, living in her own world and not easy to understand. A bit like me, like Lisbeth Salander, Dale Cooper, ...

This cop show thanks to Astrid social unability and Raphaelle compassion is a big and welcomed change from guns, car pursuits, running, fights, ....

After this first broadcast, i watched all 8 episodes still in confinement and when the season was over, i was like when i have finished reading Harry Potter: i felt sad, all the more than the background stories of all characters have nicely developed all along the season, bits by bits, piece after piece like a puzzle.

As my habit when reviewing a show, I pick this alchemy episode for my best episode, just because this one is is a bit like a modern treasure chase and Sara acting is just wonderful: her quick speech, her moving hands and open eyes are just lovable and I already miss her (and Lola/Raphaelle too as there is a true, real chemistry between the 2 of them!)..

David Lansky: Prise d'otages
(1989)

a sort of French Robocop! (web)
Ok! maybe the ROBO has to be forgotten as french TV doesn't do Sci-Fi!

But otherwise the universe looks very much the same: The city is in total decomposition (forget Paris, the city of light), it's ultra violent even for today, and our iconic french idol singer Johnny acts like a robot to serve the law: he is afraid of anything, he plunges into the heat of action, rides a imposing motocycle, he doesn't talk to much except to say puns and shoots everyone in sight to protect the innocent!

In addition, it has Géraldine Pailhas who makes her debut in her career. Like all my best actresses (see my list), she is already very convincing.

Diabolo menthe
(1977)

From this sweet, innocent high school life to the uglyness of Ozon (tv)
As a child from the late 70s, this movie was a famous experience for me in the 80s. I remember that we talked a lot about if in my family. Honestly, even as a boy, i connect easily with the younger Anne: quiet, daring, lost, arguing with the parents, on charge with her sibling (like a battery) and meeting the inner desire.

The family life in Paris in the sixties looks like mine, twenty years later in a provincial town: educational system grinding young students, silly teachers, discipline over all, pocket money, letters, nice clothes... So this movie feels amazingly authentic and in addition, it's told with innocence, kindness and modesty.

But, sadly, this world and this Paris are gone now. Now the benchmark is Ozon Jeune & Jolie in which student girl dreams to become prostitute for sex and money! World has changed for worst but luckily we have still movies like Diabolo Menthe to remember how cool it was.

Amazing Stories: You Gotta Believe Me
(1986)
Episode 5, Season 2

Well, i didn't like this show but Stephen King did (web)
Unlike a movie that is one shot, take or leave, a show asks for fidelity. and that's the thing that makes it great: if you fall for it, it's amazing but otherwise, it's a long, painful, endless drag!

And a show being an anthology is the most difficult task ever because you lose the recurring characters and the opportunity to have great, original ideas at each episode is thin!

This 2nd season of AS is like this: a few good episodes but a lot of bad ones, stupid or just boring. It's true in fact that this season is a bit more dynamic than the first one, with more 80s fun and less 30-40s nostalgia but it's also just flat, just OK. This year no crazy funny episode like Mummy, no scary one like Scorcese Mirror, No Spielberg episode and Dante with its voracious gentle monster has not his usual energy. A lot of episodes about Hollywood inside life are just useless... So honestly i'm happy now that I'm done with that show.

I pick this episode as the best (even if the cop one E14 is a good match too): the story is real fantastic and a great thriller until the last frame, the acting is wnderful with veteran insomniac Durning and the plane crash looks exactly like Spielberg in War of the World!

At last, i say that SK liked it because it can't be just luck: a moving plant; a little girl who got lost in the woods.. Does it rings to you like it rings to me? and for sure E7-life on Death row: a criminal waiting death penalty with unbelievable curing powers! Even helping the director's family who is ill! And in spite of all his miracles and goodness, he can't escape the chair! Well all the heart of his famous Green Mile is over there!

Terminator Genisys
(2015)

A success for being the WORST sequel/reboot ever ! (tv)
This movie is so bad that i stopped after 1 hour!

Everything falls apart: the story, the cast, the visual, the filming!

It's such a crap, a mess that for all audience loving T1 and T2, it's a nightmare: Judgment Day has indeed come and Hollywood machines have destroyed a franchise!

For movies analysts, it's however an excellent object to speak about today movies:

1) Schwarzie was 67! In an action movie? After being California Governor? Again as Terminator? it's like the more people get old, the more dumb they are: what was to say has been said and the time is just to move on...

2) T5 = T1+T2+X-Z : The plot is totally stupid, unbelievable and it's amazing that people has believed into it: they rip-off the best scenes of the two movies and add new crap and the result is just indigestive! At first, T2 story was weak as it's like the original 1984 movie: into the past to kill SC. So here we have the same story told another time and it's just too much: in fact, for Hollywood, a sequel is the same story as movie 1 but with a few changes. When they will understand creative art is not that, maybe we will got decent movies!

3) You'll expect to see a monstrous movie with never seen before special effects and breathtaking action as this movie is made 30 years after the original! But NOT! as today movies, you can notice that movie have rather degraded: now, you have only 2 sort of scenes: the daylight in orange, the night and interior in blue: before, we got technicolor and full colors! So now every movie looks the same and it's too hard to get my interest!

So this movie is just good for trash... With its no-quality records, i laugh hard when i heard about T6:Dark fate! again into the past to kill SC, again Schwarzie, again Linda Hamilton fighting at 62, again, again, the same story! It was not a surprise that this one bombed even worse.

Those who haven't learnt from the past are condemned to repeat it!

Batman
(1989)

My first game on Game-Boy ! (videogame)
As soon as it was on the european market, I got the original Game-Boy as a Christmas gift. So the year is 1990 and i'm 16 1/2 years old. This game was my first pick and i got in the japanese package (see my pic)!

It was astounding: playing everywhere and getting into the movie was an experience like no other before!

Sure some will laugh with my comment but that's true: Game-boy was fantastic because it was simple: a cross, A,B, select, start! so all games were intuitive and easy to play!

Next, it was the 1st time for me that i play licences and it was like virtual reality: unlike today when we crumble under complexity, details, time, Game-boy reached the perfect balance: attentive design and a whole left to imagination and nothing can beat imagination.

So here, we have the bat signal, the batwing, a 5mm Batman and all the best scenes from the cult movie of Tim Burton!

Just amazing and still fun to play 30 years later! so Unbeatable!

Captain Blood
(1988)

Our first computer (videogame)
Our dad pays 1930 Euros to give us our 1st french computer when my twin brother & me were 13 and it was Thomson TO9+ !

Sure compared to today PC, this one was a weak dinosaur but it was great to programmation and games.

I don't remember how we picked up this particular game but this one was just fantastic!

We played an alien (Captain Blood) alone in its vessel (the Arch) in a big galaxy trying to find a cure to his disability. So it's about visiting planets, landing safely and speaking to other aliens with an universal basic language. For sure, time is counted: As it gets old, it shakes more and more and so its hand can't pick anymore the destination in the star map.

Everything here was cool: the design, the colors, the ETs, the action and above all the total liberty to build the talk: it was like impressionist painting: it was not words but rather feelings.

I don't think we ever finished the game but it's just extraordinary how the programmers could put so much excitement in so few bits! At this time, video games were cool: simple, basic, instant play and reflexion!

El beso del sueño
(1992)

Plan B (web)
I discovered Maribel during Plan A (Penélope) with movies like Celestina, Belle Epoque. And always aroused by spanish actresses and culture, i took note of her identity to give a try at another time. So one day i picked this movie and it revealed to be a perfect one: Maribel shows great talent and charm as well and the story is a great thriller. It's very original and you can bet it as i can't name another movie with the same idea! It's a proof that good ideas are universal (and not just US with lot of special effects and a number after the title), that small productions maximize their budget and that I have this special bond with Spain that i can't explain. At the end, Maribel has achieved her test and as soon as Plan A is finished, i will go on watching her movies!

Amazing Stories: Secret Cinema
(1986)
Episode 20, Season 1

A bit Boring Oldies ! (web)
I wish i could have rated this highly awaited Tv show with 7 (good) but after watching the 1st season, i can only give 4 (poor) as the facts are terrible: only 11 episodes were great and so 13 were just boring!

Maybe it would change during 2nd season, but i don't really understand the editorial choice for this 1st one. I expected a show inspired by Twilight Zone set in the 80s and what i got is a tearful, nostalgic fantasy stories with the 30s-40s atmosphere! In a way, it's like the targeted audience was the 50+ years old!

So everything looks old, forgotten, out of time! Even the cast looks like a retirement home! So it's not a surprise that the show bombed! It's not a modern Twilight Zone and the future X-files would be more gripping and amazing.

And like XF, AS alternates fun and dramatic episodes. In the dramatic, Scorcèse (Mirror) and Hyams (Falworth) are outstanding thriller! In the funny ones, there are 2 particularly stupid episodes (Tuning, Toupee) but the content is indeed good: Mummy, Dante Boo, Santa, Control Man but i picked this Secret Cinema as my best episode: it has a really original story and very great acting from "young" people!

7 jours pas plus
(2017)

The same for stay at home lock-down (paytv)
Joking aside, this is really a wonderful, moving movie: since i have worked in Benelux and discovered this Poelvoorde, I have always appreciated the humanity in his acting: in caring or in tempest, he is always true, fragile with a big heart. So here this solitary man has to share his life with an illegal alien and together they learn to open to life. Alexandra Lamy is also perfect because stripped of all her fun and boring dramatics, she brings support and love. That's why i really like this movie: a bit like Groundhog Day or Life of Paul Sneijder, it has a real Zen feeling: nothing is pushed, things happen naturally and characters develop. In addition, you'll understand why all things are tied, why there is no luck so this humble movie is at the end like a modern fairy tale! A true recommendation for any audience seeking authenticity!

Avtoportret neizvestnogo
(1988)

Lynch fans should like it! (web)
I'm sure that those fans are like me, speaking no russian. Thus, just with this, this movie looks intriguing as without subtitles, it would be hard to guess what happens. It's the same things with locations or people: just totally unknown to us westerners so the travel beyond is real.

But, the movie is in addition original and bizarre in its construction and characters and it has a strong Lynchian feeling: long shots about simple, basic moments; the real is not that real and it's easy to get lost.

And for sure, the movie has a scene identical to one of Lynch directed in Inland Empire: the character sees his own life on a cinema screen!

So this film is very appealing four your brain and as it features the charming Natalia Negoda, it was a must see for me!

La ribelle
(1993)

beyond Almodovar (web)
Actually it's like Almodovar MADE Pénélope. Despite some of their movies are just crap, Pénélope was also a very talented actress before their meeting and like Open your eyes, this one is excellent.

Péné plays a young italian woman in rebellion (OK, that's the title): because she is a thief, instead of being sent to prison, she is sent to church service, which is as strict, with maybe more feminine compassion.

So here she learns life: she discovers joy, love and falls again. This is a movie of hope and redemption and Péné's moods can express freely and rigthly... without Almodovar!

The Possessed
(1977)

Harrison was not only Star Wars (web)
The legend could be Star Wars made Harrison. Well, Harrison's acting talent existed before the trilogy and this movie, as well as American Graffiti, are here to prove that.

Harrison plays a Don Juanesque teacher in a catholic girl school in which happens demoniac phenomena. He has already his cool attitude and that's why i like him.

Sure the story is a rip-off of the famous exorcist (only a non conformist priest can help them!) but the production is not that bad, especially when you compare it to today productions. Here the effects are authentic, the photography luminous and clear and the story has a direct plot and not a melting-polt of opinions or a collage of bloody, shocking scenes.

So the 70s was the best period from this frightening genre and even a poor production from this time excels from the today stinkers!

Amblin'
(1968)

Emblem ! (web)
All masters achieve greatness at once and Spielberg illustrates it. His 1st professional work is a terrific short love story in the hippies world. It prefigures in a way his future Duel because it's also a silent movie (no dialogs) set in really sunny California! In spite of the minimalist plot (reaching the waves), Spielberg gives us a dynamic movie with great casting, cool soundtrack and amazing camera work. Even today, he still does the same things and he always reaches his audience because he is a true storyteller! So he's different from David Lynch, another favorite director of mine because Lynch prefers feelings over story and from Tim Burton who stays in fairy world. Spielberg knows how to tell different stories and is always in touch with the moment. So that's why Amblin is finally very moving because it's Spielberg in the 60s, the hippie generation, the rebellious and dreaming youth and for sure, movies like that can't be done today, even by Spielberg! A true gem to discover quickly!

NBA All-Star Challenge
(1992)

Ooops (videogame)
This game was released in 1992 so you can guess my hobbies at that time: NBA & Gameboy. Indeed, i started to watch NBA (Bulls only) in march 1991 & i got GB as a Christmas gift this same year. The game is interesting because it's official (like the NFL i played also): all the teams are here and for each team, there is 1 player only: so there's Jordan, Bird but not Magic (which is not that bad!). You play 1 on 1 or HORSE and that's all! No season, no tournament... Sure today nobody would play it! But back to 1992, it was (a bit) exciting because it was the 1st time in world history you could play NBA games electronically just everywhere: your bed, the bus, school !!!

Gremlins 2: The New Batch
(1990)

For submissive only ! (videogame)
Do you like dark creatures? Being beaten? Crushed? Wounded by piles? Well, this game is for you!

I played it on Gameboy and honestly, the difficulty level is just too hard! Gizmo has only 5 hearts and you must guide him into 5 endless level, full of void, sticking ground, etc... Each Gizmo step becomes a pain and for sure, the moment when he turns invisible in the maze is just impossible.

It's a pity because the graphics are really well done (for a GB)... Maybe you think: well, he's a bad player! so OK try it and play (a few minutes) BUT don't complain if your throw your GB against the wall!

Parker Lewis Can't Lose: Teens from a Mall
(1991)
Episode 24, Season 1

My best high-school TV show (vhs)
I had the same age than Parker when I watched his show. For a french teen living in a old lost french city, this high school was like Paradise: dazzling, colored, modern, clean, always sunny, etc... But beyond, this show was unique because of its original point of view: the friends have the same problems as me but over there, it was over the top, dynamic, silly planning, rock. So this show was interesting because it took universal feelings in a pop shake-up and decided not to use the usual boring drama! At last, for me, it was successful: I remember to buy some eccentric shirts like Parker and I was happy! In a way, this really funny show was an amazing bang to a wonderful decade (80s) and i don't envy the today kids because they can't find something like this! I picked up this episode because it happens in one of my best locations in the world: a mall and Josie is also very cute here and for once, the dream girl pays attention.

Une chance de trop
(2015)

One less chance for me (rental)
Initially, Alexandra was among my 6 best actresses list and the one defending France! I made this choice after viewing her 300+ episodes of the daily comedy 1GARS-1FILLE and considering her as a perfect wife: in other words, the Alex in this sitcom was truly all i can expect for a soulmate: pretty, funny, tender, eccentric, caring ... I naively think that she would be like this in all her works...

And so, i started to watch her other movies and honestly, the passion was not here anymore: when she did comedies, it was not that funny.. and when she does drama, she is rather annoying: very rigid, easily upset... only in that TV show!

This drama serie was really excellent with speechless cliffhanger & suspense: as it involves a kidnapping, it's rather stressful too and Alex is amazing feeling in panic and courageous at the same time. Her supporting cast is excellent as well with actors really concerned and there are so much twists that you can never take your breath!

So this one is a true recommendation!

Annihilation
(2018)

Another rising star annihilated (web)
After the clothes hanger acting talent of Monica Bellucci, now, with those last reviews, i settle the accounts with bourgeois Natalie Portman!

In the beginning, Natalie was fresh, kind, strong, tender and had inspired choices to do powerful movies (Anywhere, Heart, V, Goya, ...).

But since her oscar, her wedding to a Frenchman, she has fallen into (and not access) the big celebrity Ghota and her career becomes worthless: only Bo-Bo movies (Planetarium, the 2 Malick), hollow ass licking soup about elites (Jackie, Dior ads), harmless pseudo rebellion (Vox, Eating animals), brainless Ubermensche brawls (Thor)...

Unlike true activist colleagues (Leonor Varela for example), Natalie has become the parrot of good liberal conscience without much thinking about it! Not a single word about social inequalities and for sure Dior & Jackie can't help her! Vegan crusade: it's bad to eat animals? a chance she doesn't live in Prehistoric time! and how do you nourish an overpopulated earth?

But with this movie (at last i come to it), she twists the neck of 2 more fights: guns & timeisup masquerade!

Very concerned about guns control in public, she previously did a gun-slinging movie called JANE GOT A GUN! HE, Natalie, be smart & think! either the guns are bad or they are good but you can't do hypocritically a movie like this (with a gun, i kill my problem) and says the contrary after! Here, in this poor sci-fi, it's the same thing in worse: again with a gun on the poster and again a gun to solve the problem!

Next, this all women cast is stinking; especially in the military world! Again, in a more wise past, women didn't do military not for discrimination but just because WAR IS UGLY! What do you prove killing other human beings! Bravery, Liberty ??? well, look Weir's Witness and then meditate! And what about this imposed feminine cast? Nobody believes it and this fake belief just bores every one! Humanity is not brave women + stupid men! And for sure, women are discriminated in US, Hollywood? Again an assumption that means nothing: Jews were discriminated by nazis, Blacks were discriminated in Apartheid! Even your own country discriminated blacks with segregation! Your Goya movie was about Christian inquisition which in the name of a loving god, murder innocents! That's discrimination, that's pain, that's suffering! What do you wait to do movies about this ???

So, Natalie, be awake! Get up and stop whining about your billionaires problem and doing stinker after stinker! But sadly, i think the time is up for you too!

Joseph
(1995)

Monica (vhs)
I can't say if i have explained my reviews like this because NEW IMDB forbids reviewers to retrieve quickly their old reviews but this movie belongs to my decade of being a crazy fan of Monica Bellucci.

It was between 1996 (with l'Appartement) and 2005 (Combien tu m'aimes) and ironically, i stumbled unto her following visits to a Italian (!) shrink (!) after a burn-out caused by 4 intensive years at the Law University!

So in that period, i did all to watch every movie in which Monica was in and so I taped this one from an Italian channel! In that light, this movie is just awful: Monica has just a stand-up role and we can glimpse her when the action takes place in the royal court but that's all!

Now, this movie is a good example of her acting talent: except a few good movies (L'appartment, Doberman, Come mi vuoi & Mauvais genre), Monica never left her model career and her lymphatic, crouched sexy roles just bored me over! Acting is not about being sexy, kind or cool, it's about giving emotions and for that, Monica is a total failure! That's why my passion extinctguished by itlsef...

Silver Spoons: I'm Just Wild About Harry
(1982)
Episode 8, Season 1

Yep! Silver but not gold! (web)
I'm pretty sure that I watched this show as a kid (and as all boys, felt charmed by Miss Kate)... I tried to watch it again now as an adult and well, this is not as good... However, this 1st season is much better than the last one (5th) and i rate (a little) 7 because there are a lot of good things however and in spite of some episodes are endless even for 24 minutes (E21!)...

The great asset of this show was this mansion that looks like much more as a toys shop than a home! that's why it's cozy here and why later seasons fall because all things were removed!

Next, the show is cool because the people are well dressed: sure you gonna say they look good because they are rich but here no crazy hairs, no tattoos, no sportwear only when needed, no hole jeans, no outrageous clothes: cast wears pants, dresses, shirts, pull-over and they are fine! Actually, people seems to regress and are happy dressing filthy!

At last, this season has a better fun than the later. The father is a bit less arrogant and there is some stage set comedy that are funny (E20).

But the stories are not that exciting or gripping. Usually each episode loses punch in endless talks on the sofa...

Following my tradition to pick the best episode, i took this one because it's quite original and has a cool night out scene! E22 was cool because i experienced as well a lot of details: keys on TV, floor that cracks the night,...

Welcome Home, Roxy Carmichael
(1990)

A now A list movie (web)
In 1990, nobody could guess the amazing future of both Winona and Abrahams. So then it's a little movie, done without pretention but that however achieves greatly. In the 80s, there were a lot of innocent, candid movies about teens who feel marginal in their small town, america. As i had been at the same time, a marginal teen in an old french town, i found this genre very appealing. Nowadays as movies disdain social reality, it's nearly extinct, the last one coming to mind would be Juno in 2007!

So here, Winona has still the essence of Beetlejuice with her and the movie flows softly. It has a great trick to keep the suspense with the countdown of the arrival of this local mega superstar! and it has also the super sexy Ava Fabian, well sort of ...

The Comrades of Summer
(1992)

Red Strike (web)
It's funny: most users take this movie for baseball. Me, i take it for glasnot & perestroika. This kind of movie is actually dead because it was then unbelievable coproductions between US-USSR. After decades of cold war, Old west was discovering soviets and soviets were discovering the west. In that special period, Natalya Negoda was the most charming ambassador import export ever and the main reason i spent months tracking this movie. So instead of baseball, it could have been soccer or waterpolo, i don't care. It's true that the movie is not really good. The story and characters are not well stuffed and watching it is a bit painful. I found the bed scene between Natalya & Mantegna totally useless and totally misplaced. But americans are not more founding father and their mores have degraded. But Natalya has done so few movies that even a bad one with her is still a good one for me.

The Mission
(1986)

The poster is actually one vivid memory (screen)
This huge waterfall, crouched between seats, is what i remember of the screening of this movie. I explain: In 1986, i was 12 and our great french teacher took the classroom to watch it in theater: it was exceptional because this kind of lessons outside the school was very rare.

So we were kids and like all kids, the wisdom, poetry and humanity left us cold as we prefer to play GI in the dark between ranks!

Later, this movie was an audio tape (google it if you don't know what is it) that my twin brother bought and that my father kept playing in long trip in our family car. Sure Morricone music is beautiful but at the end, i couldn't stand it anymore!

Now, it's OK: as an adult, i could watch it again and fully appreciate this remarkable movie: it's always shameful to understand that my civilization Europe made others bleed in the name of the best theories and is still free of any accounting today ... The wise say: those who don't understand the past are prone to repeat it. So watch this movie and learn!

The Great Mouse Detective
(1986)

Disney by gaslight (screen)
After the big disapointments of the early Don Bluth movies (Brisby, Fievel), i watched this one on my TV now 34 years later i have seen on screen as a teen and the (Disney) magic is still working.

I'm a french however i have a BIG soft spot for Britain. Maybe my family has an English ancestor during the Hundred Years War because our roots are close to the frontier in Périgord! Anyway i don't like the Brigades du Titre but Sherlock Holmes speaks to me. III Republique smells naphtaline while Queen Victoria impresses.

So here, i was at once gripped. Unlike todays animation, the art is excellent with foggy London, cobbled streets, ... The characters are totally cool: Basil uses his intellect not his biceps, Ratigan is a baroque vilain and his acolyte looks like a gremlin, and Olivia is a courageous daughter, one of the best toon ever animated. So this a Disney movie that stays true to the basic: feelings made by paper and i recommend it a lot!

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