Author Topic: What Are You Watching? (DVD's & Blu-ray's)  (Read 15747 times)

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Re: What Are You Watching? (DVD's & Blu-ray's)
« Reply #3645 on: November 26, 2017, 10:49:25 am »
...where is everyone?

Anyway, you remember that video I posted on the "Hollywood strip scenes" thread with the girls in the jungle?  Well F me because I sat through that whole movie, to steal a line from Nostalgia Critic, "so you don't have to."

Inara The Jungle Girl (2012)

Look, I knew this movie was going to be garbage, the question was more "is there going to be anything worthwhile in this?"  It's an excuse to have a movie with beautiful women (and they are pretty beautiful) in skimpy leather outfits in the jungle, and it certainly does have that... although they don't show up until 30 minutes into the 80 minute flick.  That's not good.  And they're all shot rather wide.  If you're gonna make this kind of movie, it should be shot more... I don't want to say exploitatively, but get someone who shoots a lot of fashion and glamour.  Think "Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue" video with leather loincloths... if you're going for exploitation, go for the gold, you know?

(I should also point out that there's no nudity in the flick either, which... you kind of expect that, right?  At least a minor character undressing to go in the water or something.)

The movie starts with this direct to camera monologue from a soldier we never see again and then cuts to this Ennio Morricone style theme, and I got this sense that they were trying to go in a Quentin Tarantino direction.  Okay, that's cool, that'd be a fun way to go about this.  But here's the problem: the main actress can't act.  At all.  She's basically shouting/asking every single line that she delivers,  and I think that the directors/editors realized this so they cut as much dialogue as possible.  As a result, the movie is silent for HUGE chunks of time.  Which, as you can imagine, undercuts the whole dialogue-dependent Tarantino effect.

Also, being silent means that you have NO clue who most of the characters are.  The web site lists them all AND backstories, and I genuinely wonder if they had a whole big established world that they couldn't afford to put on screen or if they were just really overcompensating for having girls run around in bikinis for the whole movie.

The plot is basically Avatar, disgraced soldier is injured on a mission, taken in by a tribe of natives and eventually defends them against the bad guys she was once a part of.  They snuck in a scene that's basically the "I dare you to do better" Captain Kirk bit from the 2009 Star Trek, and the worst fight scene I've ever seen.

(Side thought, another reason to do a movie like this: an excuse for fight scenes.  This is the exact kind of flimsy pretext that martial arts guys would hang a movie on as an excuse to show off all the battles they can do.  The fights in this ranger from decent to high school play quality... in the same shots!)

So the movie is mostly quiet, the score's all right, I'll give them that, but it's also BORING.  While the plot is straightforward, it's mostly "and then" storytelling, meaning scenes don't really influence the next scene, and combine that with the fact that every scene fades in and fades out, you feel like you're watching disconnected scenes.  We also don't see IMPORTANT moments, it's like the movie is happening off-screen.  The main girl is in a loincloth bikini, right?  Kind of the reason for the movie to exist.  But it's never shown/explained WHY.  She's in a crash, but her clothes aren't ripped (and she's not visibly HURT either), so we never know WHY she has to change clothes.  Given that she's transitioning into a different world, you kinda want that scene, right?  Even if she doesn't kill the animal (or Costume Store Employee) she gets the skins from, you want that bit.  It's like the first time Batman gets the batsuit or something, it should be a moment.

Like, I don't care if the movie is cheap or dumb or made for a purpose (tittilation, showing off fight scenes, whatever), but you have to put in the right moments and obey simple rules of narrative storytelling.  I don't mind a bad movie, but I really hate missed opportunities, and this movie is full of them.  Example, there's this tribal dance scene, but it doesn't affect the plot in any way, it's just there.  Well, you have the modern girl there, have her have to dance.  She winds up doing something dopey like the Macarena and that "angers the gods" or something. It felt like the movie is just a checklist of scenes they need to have, with not much thought to "what can we DO with these scenes?"  Which is always one of the first questions you should ask when dealing with something this trope-y.  What are the opportunities here that we can play with?  How can we put our own unique stamp on it?

And the reason I bring this up is that I feel like this is the kind of genre where you could make a good movie, a swashbuckling jungle adventure, but I don't know if anyone's ever actually done that yet.  I suppose, like I said about Tomorrowland, "I'll just have to make it myself."
« Last Edit: November 26, 2017, 11:04:57 am by Neumatic »


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