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Round 1: Black Swan vs. OUATINW

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Indi
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#1

Posted 04 May 2012 - 09:37 PM

Black Swan vs. Once Upon a Time in the West

Rules:
No polls, just a review and your opinion on why you believe the film you've chosen should stay higher up in the list. 50 words or more, 40 is accepted if you have expressed your opinion in a satisfactory standard.

Have fun!

Mister Pink
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#2

Posted 04 May 2012 - 11:10 PM

I loved those polls the first time. I mean the voting process. It's a god idea to get rid of the polls as it's much better if people explain why.

I need to see those films so I can't judge. Good luck with the whole project Indi. icon14.gif

Indi
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#3

Posted 05 May 2012 - 03:11 PM

I vote Once Upon a Time in the West.

Whilst Black Swan is a great psychological thriller, I still found it a bit weird in some parts. Psychological thrillers have never been my type of thing in a major way to be honest. Natalie Portman played the role in such greatness I can't fault that.

Once Upon a Time is directed by one of my favourite directors: Sergio Leone. The master of spaghetti westerns, including "A Fistful of Dollars", "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly", and also "For A Few Dollars More." Henry Fonda plays as one of the most insane and most cruellest outlaws in the west. Charles Bronson is basically the "Man with No Name (Clint Eastwood)" in this flick, Charles Bronson is sent to kill Henry Fonda simply because he killed a whole family for his own selfish needs to gain more power and money. Well, that's the story in a nutshell at least.

The direction, the cinematography, the story, the actors and everything inside of the film is just sheer spaghetti western goodness. Claudia Cardinale is beautiful and is a fine actor indeed.

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#4

Posted 05 May 2012 - 04:08 PM

What's the stance for when you haven't seen both films? Because I could write for England on why I love Black Swan, but it seems both pointless and unfair for it to count considering I haven't seen Once upon a time.

Indi
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#5

Posted 05 May 2012 - 04:11 PM

QUOTE (Robinski @ Saturday, May 5 2012, 17:08)
What's the stance for when you haven't seen both films? Because I could write for England on why I love Black Swan, but it seems both pointless and unfair for it to count considering I haven't seen Once upon a time.

You just have to see Once Upon a Time in the West to vote. It's the same thing last time, but to prevent people cheating by just voting in a poll "Black Swan" or "OUAITW," reviews have been put in place.

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#6

Posted 05 May 2012 - 04:21 PM

I figured as such, and it makes sense.

I just enjoy writing about films I like.

Tycek
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#7

Posted 05 May 2012 - 07:58 PM Edited by Tycek, 05 May 2012 - 09:27 PM.

Many of the battle will be not only between movies, but also between directors. Here we can see the battle between two legendary (of course their fame level is hard to compare) directors. One of them is Siergio Leone well knows director not only of the best westerns, but also very memorable movies (who haven't heard about Fistful of Dollars (I almost wrote Hollars - damn you Rockstar), Good, Bad and Ugly, Once Upon Time In America or already mentioned here Once Upon Time In The West. The other one is Darren Aronofsky who was always directing more like shock movies.

Siergio Leone knew how to create perfect Western where almost every element was perfect both alone and in a complete picture. In OUTITW we got pefect acting (fantastic Henry Fonda, mysterious Chuck Bronson who could melt Chuck Norris with his eyes and beautiful Claudia Cardinale), we got perfect pictures of the west, we got beautiful music which can give you the creeps made as always by Ennio Morricone, memorable scenes.

Arnofsky on the other hand always try to shock viewers with some elements and because of that I found Dark Swan a bit hard to watch. Of course ballet scenes was beatiful, slow and gentle, music was very good, actresses were beautiful, but I found some elements a bit cliche. Nina as a ballet dancer with anorexia, paranoia, drug problems and hidden lesbian affection was a bit overweighted with her character creation. She was kind of how-many-problems-this-girl-can-have type of character. Her transition into black swan was also easy to discover even in early part of the movie. Gore elements like scene with finger skin or nail file were destroying the whole movie. On one hand gentle ballet and other woman who cut her cheeks with nail file? The best way to sumarize this movie is to quote Lily "It's not for everyone." Definitely not for me.

My vote goes to Once Upon Time In The West.

Tyler
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#8

Posted 05 May 2012 - 08:58 PM

First and foremost, get rid of them spoilers, Tycek. I'd be a bit pissed if I saw that before watching Once Upon a Time.

Both of these films are beautifully shot and acted, and it was quite hard to choose between them. On the one hand, you have a choreographed epic Western that I would call one of the finest of all time. Everything from the score to Henry Fonda's hat works perfectly. The pacing is slow and arid. It is an echo of the memorable old west. Scenes are grit-filled and tense. There's little actual violence compared to the build-up between them, and it works.

On the other, you have Black Swan. Darren Aronofsky is my favourite director for his ability to compose a story that is both rich in the setting and character development. You are put into the shoes of a young dancer as she descends into madness and stardom. You are pulled through tense scenes that are enough to have you looking at your nails to make sure they're okay. You're shown at least 40 minutes of a ballet and you aren't even mad.

Both films are masterpieces in their own right. I would recommend anyone that is unsure about seeing either of these, to do so immediately. In the end, I see them much on the same level, but the overall winner of the two- for me, is Black Swan.

Tycek
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#9

Posted 05 May 2012 - 09:29 PM

Sorry about the spoilers Tyler. I got rid of them, but I thought in topic like these you should watch movie before giving your vote so there is rather small chance that someone who hasn't seen the movie would see them.

Tyler
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#10

Posted 05 May 2012 - 09:34 PM

Eh, I've a hard-on for films like these, and I just don't want anyone else feeling like that to get spoiled while in here. Say someone came in to read these posts to see if they should watch both of these films. Isn't that what the final list will really be for, anyway? I was mostly just saying you should opt for the spoiler tags, myself. tounge.gif

Robinski
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#11

Posted 05 May 2012 - 10:02 PM

QUOTE (Tycek @ Saturday, May 5 2012, 19:58)
Arnofsky on the other hand always try to shock viewers with some elements and because of that I found Dark Swan a bit hard to watch. Of course ballet scenes was beatiful, slow and gentle, music was very good, actresses were beautiful, but I found some elements a bit cliche. Nina as a ballet dancer with anorexia, paranoia, drug problems and hidden lesbian affection was a bit overweighted with her character creation. She was kind of how-many-problems-this-girl-can-have type of character. Her transition into black swan was also easy to discover even in early part of the movie. Gore elements like scene with finger skin or nail file were destroying the whole movie. On one hand gentle ballet and other woman who cut her cheeks with nail file? The best way to sumarize this movie is to quote Lily "It's not for everyone." Definitely not for me.

This is why I liked the film so much. There are only two real moments of character development (the night out with Lily and the final performance) but Aronofsky and Portman crafted such a deep character in Nina that it didn't matter. This is a girl who, behind the composed, paper-thin veneer is completely f*cked up, just like the profession she's in. And, upon watching the film a second time I think it's handled really well as to why. Nina's so f*cked up because she hates ballet: she only does it out of the guilt she feels for her mother's career, and the symptoms (the anorexia, the self-harm fantasies) are manifestations of her struggle to match up to said career. The paranoia and seeing doppelgangers of herself (on the subway at the very start, and in the pedestrian underpass) is how her deep rooted wish to be someone else, or to have taken a different path, comes out.

The scene when she comes home drunk/rolling's one of my favourite scenes, because you can see that she, if only for a while, sees what her mother's done to her.

That's why I like the film so much, on the surface it's a very well produced psych-horror film about ballet, but underneath it's a very well produced psych-horror film about detesting ballet.

But my opinion doesn't count because I haven't seen OUATITW, for all I know it makes Black Swan look as deep as a petri dish. tounge.gif

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#12

Posted 06 May 2012 - 09:17 AM

I really like both films a lot, but ultimately I'm just a sucker for epics. Compared to Leone's 'Dollars' trilogy, Once Upon a Time in the West is a much slower paced film and a lot more restrained in tone. It takes about 30 minutes until all main players are fully introduced, and it's not clear what the plot is until about an hour and a half into the film. The slow build-up works well as a means to build up tension. I was a bit underwhelmed with Bronson's character's angle, but it was a fun ride. The film's 'seriousness' works in its favor and it stacks up with modern westerns in terms of storytelling and characters, while still having time to show crazy, typical western stuff like the train-boot killing. Henry Fonda is great as Frank, the blood/power-thirsty hired gun and Bronson is a bad dude as always.

Robinski, you should at least watch the first the scene of the movie, maybe not for the sake of the competition but because it's f*cking incredible. It's a microcosm of the rest of the movie (aside from the lack of Ennio Morricone's awesome soundtrack). It's slow, it's calculated and it just plain looks great. It's my favorite scene of the entire movie. Look it up on YT, you won't regret it.

I hope Black Swan loses, if only for the creepy skin bullsh*t Aronofsky put me through. I've seen actual people get their heads cut off, mutilated bodies and what have you, but ripping skin off a hand? nopenopenopenope

I vote for Once Upon a Time in the West.

Robinski
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#13

Posted 06 May 2012 - 09:35 AM

QUOTE (Fnorg @ Sunday, May 6 2012, 09:17)
Robinski, you should at least watch the first the scene of the movie, maybe not for the sake of the competition but because it's f*cking incredible. It's a microcosm of the rest of the movie (aside from the lack of Ennio Morricone's awesome soundtrack). It's slow, it's calculated and it just plain looks great. It's my favorite scene of the entire movie. Look it up on YT, you won't regret it.

Don't worry, it's on my list. To be specific, it's on this list, which I'm working my way through.


QUOTE
I hope Black Swan loses, if only for the creepy skin bullsh*t Aronofsky put me through. I've seen actual people get their heads cut off, mutilated bodies and what have you, but ripping skin off a hand? nopenopenopenope


Haha, I don't know anyone who didn't cringe at that bit. It's because it's something so normal (like picking at dry skin or biting your nails) gone oh so horribly wrong.

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#14

Posted 06 May 2012 - 11:00 AM

40 years from now Black Swan won't be remembered. It was about 45 years ago when OUATITW was released and till this day it is regarded as a classic, a masterpiece and original gem. This film was the ultimate combination of the classic american west and the Spaghetti-Western style of film making. Sergio Leone is head and shoulders above Darren Arfonsky when it comes to directing. Pure and simple. That man revolutionized the Western genre, like it or not this film has achieved a legendary status that Black Swan can only dream of gaining.

Marlowe.
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#15

Posted 06 May 2012 - 02:53 PM Edited by Marlowe., 06 May 2012 - 02:57 PM.

Aronofsky deserves a lot of credit for turning a predictable ballet story, appropriately fitting day-time T.V., into a very watchable and enjoyable movie. Before I reluctantly watched Black Swan, I was gearing up to hate everything about it, sub the lesbian sex scene (which FYI, was infact the second biggest disappointment, just behind Portman's much hyped performance), but I actually sat through the while thing without ever leaving my seat (a rare feat for my ADD self). So, good Job Darren!
Still, having said that, I still feel as if there is nothing incredibly remarkable about the film [Black Swan] that makes it stand out compared to the operatic epic that is - Once Upon a Time in the West.

Once Upon a Time is a simple film plot-wise. It's so simple infact, I can barely recall it. Something to do with land and train tracks (there's probably some sort of metaphor connecting the slow pace and the slow, dying end of the west - but I don't know). I tried to locate my DVD copy in order to be prepared for this but I couldn't find it, so I'm forced to piece together the movie in my fragile mind. What mostly stands out is how awesome the cinematography and score were - visually and musically it's the best western, and Leonne knew this, which is why the film is so long; he just lets the camera and Morricone's music do all of the talking, like a Western opera. I also recall how evil Henry Fonda was, how badass Charles Bronson was, and how smoking hot Claudia Cardinale was.

Once Upon a Time is a movie that will forever be sketched in my mind.
Marlowe. votes Once Upon a Time in the West

Indi
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#16

Posted 07 May 2012 - 07:17 PM

Voting stopped.

Once Upon a Time in the West wins.




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