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neotheognis

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About me

I am Neo-Theognis, LibraryThing’s goosecap, Mastodon’s silentword.

I review movies. I do not like rating them. Reducing them to a number is not helpful. But the site seems to be pushing me towards it, so I’m along for the ride, I guess.

Books are my favorite thing, but the visual side of the brain isn’t always bad, you know. Films are short, like little novellas, but (rather long) short stories can say a lot.

…. (Thought I already wrote this, lol:) When I watch a movie, I usually have a little light in the room, because although I look carefully at the screen—I certainly don’t brush my teeth and carry on a conversation while having the tablet on for noise, lol—I still like being reminded that it isn’t ‘real’. Not in the ordinary sense. Art is always a sort of stylized reality, not the unedited product.

About my collections

I watch movies in sittings of 20-30 minutes or so, so across days and days and not all at once—so slowly, although I’m going to be uploading movies I’ve seen in the days of my goosecap profile on LT, so I have a back catalog, you know.

………………….

I like making and breaking the dreams of aspiring directors.

And dead ones.

Lists

Observational Comedy Films (3 items)
Movie list by neotheognis
Last updated 1 day, 7 hours ago
Romantic Drama Films (3 items)
Movie list by neotheognis
Last updated 2 weeks, 3 days ago
Personal drama films (2 items)
Movie list by neotheognis
Last updated 2 weeks, 3 days ago
Adventure comedy films (5 items)
Movie list by neotheognis
Last updated 3 weeks, 4 days ago
Social Drama Films (8 items)
Movie list by neotheognis
Last updated 3 weeks, 4 days ago



Recent reviews

I Awake To See That No One Is Free

Posted : 1 day, 7 hours ago on 4 February 2023 01:40 (A review of By the Sea)

This one is kinda simple yet subtle, like a painting; I couldn’t give it a straight review myself, so I’ll just give you a juxtaposition with the lyrics of a song which I’ve always thought is about anxiety, although anxiety can be related to other things…. 

“I awake to find no peace of mind 

I said, How do you live, as a fugitive, 

Down here, where I cannot see so clear?’

I said, ‘What do I know, 

Show me the right way to go!’


“And the spies came out of the water

But you’re feeling so bad ‘cause you know

That the spies hide out in every corner

But you can’t touch them no 

‘Cause they’re all spies 

They’re all spies…. 


“I awake to see that no one is free

We’re all fugitives 

Look at the way we live

Down here, I cannot sleep from fear, no 

I said, ‘Which way do I turn?’ 

Oh I forget everything I learn! 


“And the spies came out of the water 

And you’re feeling so bad ‘cause you know

That the spies hide out in every corner 

But you can’t touch them no 

‘Cause they’re all spies 

They’re all spies…. 


“And if we don’t hide here 

They’re gonna find us 

And if we don’t hide now

They’re gonna catch us where we sleep

And if we don’t hide here, 

They’re gonna find us…. 


“And the spies came out of the water 

But you’re feeling so good ‘cause you know 

That though spies hide out in every corner 

They can’t touch you, no…. 

‘Cause they’re just spies…. 

They’re just spies….” 


The song is called “Spies” by Coldplay 




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Personal War Drama

Posted : 2 weeks, 3 days ago on 19 January 2023 02:25 (A review of Unbroken)

It’s the patriotic Angelina Jolie! 


“If you can take it you can make it…. A moment of pain, is worth a lifetime of glory!” 


The guy’s a high school runner, and then a soldier, obviously, but as an intellectual I relate to that philosophy, because thinking about ornery smart people and the books they write can be quite pain-inducing, in a way, but it’s worth it for me. Even as a mystic, I think it has a relevance. We don’t want this…. Sorta, negative nothing, where you’re like the man who sat by the pool of water for 38 years saying, “I’m nothing; just let me rot”, you know. (They didn’t happen to mention that guy in the homily excerpt, but it was a nice homily.) And I don’t know; I just started to actually like the Man of the Forties in this movie, you know. And I like liking things. 


I guess in general I could say that this is a personal war drama—a personal crisis drama about a war, you know. Kinda like a horror movie, a personal fight, only military instead of supernatural. It’s not a social/political or ‘adventure’ kinda story, really. It’s about the personal struggle of a soldier or warrior. I know there are novels or whatever like that, although I don’t know that I’ve read them. I have read one or two military memoirs of enlisted guys, and it’s certainly not like a strategy book. It’s about his own life, you know. It’s about him. 


…. I guess I got the sense of what the movie was like in that first sitting or two, much less than half of the movie, 20-50 minutes, but the whole thing was done very well. It’s a nice movie. 



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And There Was No Music At The End

Posted : 3 weeks, 4 days ago on 10 January 2023 09:55 (A review of The Wilby Conspiracy (1975))

It’s an ‘adventure’ story, albeit a more serious and political one than some are—although almost any adventure story has a sort of muted politics to it, more so than if you stay at home. 

It’s the sort of movie which is better than the Mr Collins/Catherine de Bourgh crowd will say; I liked it at least as well as “The Lillies of the Field”, the more famous Ralph Nelson/Sidney Poiters collaboration…. It just seemed more honest. 

Movies are short, like novellas, so it can be hard to squeeze in all the angles of ambiguity of real life, that and society can’t change all its assumptions at once, basically, but, I don’t know. You can criticize or second-guess, but to me this is a good movie. It has a message. And it’s fun…. 

And, but—there is no music at the end. It’s perfect. You expect art to be predicable, I guess, if you’re not naive—but the ending was perfect. 

Credits roll in silence. 


0 comments, Reply to this entry

The Lincoln Southerner

Posted : 3 weeks, 6 days ago on 8 January 2023 09:31 (A review of Santa Fe)

This movie kinda reminded me of my father, or at least his image of himself. I guess that’s why I watched it. Here you have the Unambiguously Heroic Hero, who’s loving and tough, and the joker brothers, who are vicious and weak, you know. (I guess there’s also a girl! Gotta prove you’re straight, so you can crush her later!). And, I don’t know; that’s pretty much it. The Hero’s humanness/limitations are kinda projected out into the brothers, who are weak and vicious. I guess in a way it shows that, even in the Days of White Men, (gee wilickers a Southern cowboy!), there were dubious examples of manhood, but really I guess you’re supposed to walk away and say, Back then, there was a Hero, you know—and in a way…. Weren’t we all heroes? 

It’s not memorable or whatever. More deluded flights of fancy are certainly possible, though. But it’s a little adventure story, you know. I guess it passes the time in a possibly harmless way. 


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Love’s Traitor

Posted : 4 weeks, 1 day ago on 7 January 2023 02:11 (A review of In the Land of Blood and Honey)

There are obviously reasons not to like this movie: woman director (wrong gender); portrayal of gender in war (not romantic or boys’ club-y); both its ambiguity and its moral stance (normally we try to go for one or the other—or better yet, neither!); its portrayal of a lesser known region (you could have made it about Italy instead!) by an outsider (you mean her parents aren’t FROM the former Yugoslavia? You mean artists can care about—Other People? But why, why? History is about being callous, right?). 


Although those are the reasons I liked it, you know. 


I also don’t think that it’s Serb-bashing (or West-bashing) in an unthinking, whining way, although it certainly doesn’t shy away from showing blood and coarseness and all the shit of war, you know. It does also show the Serb nationalist father and let him have his fifteen minutes of fame, and I think it’s good to let objectionable or whatever people have their fifteen minutes of fame. 


I didn’t like the male lead by the end, and he was a Serb, although it has much more to do with him as a man—gender is a part of war—than anything else. It also has to do with something he said near the beginning, which at the time you assume he doesn’t mean, but which you realize by the end, that he kinda does. 


But if he was broken, morally speaking, he was certainly placed under intolerable moral strain, you know. 


…. And I know I didn’t talk about the girl, but it’s a great feminist film. 


…. I guess you could say that the male lead is a ‘colorblind’ ‘racist’/ethnocentric, although it doesn’t seem quite “fair” to me, (O Lord), since plenty of us fit that description, and it doesn’t seem to end up for us like this, so sinned against, and so sinning, so sinning…. How could we be such sinners, out of such happy cloth? 


I don’t like to rate things, you know. I probably shouldn’t even say these things, in a way. 



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Living in the World of Time

Posted : 4 weeks, 1 day ago on 7 January 2023 12:52 (A review of Shadowlands)

I think it’s fair to say that Jack was not a mystic but an investigator of the ordinary world, (and the magic of the ordinary world), but it’s also clear that his investigations were usually sound, and prepared him to live a decent life, even in that field of personal (romantic!) experience so difficult to find in a pure state in ordinary people (and regardless of whether they’re academics or not, lol). 

There’s a scene near the end where Jack tells Joy (basically) that he feels like they’ve solved Life, you know, like they’re not living in the world of Time anymore; they’ve found God. (Which I suppose is the newbie response to ‘falling in love’.) But Joy tells Jack that really they are living in the world of Time still, that they’ve come across a nice thread in Time, but later he’ll have to face the nastier side of the coin, but to remember that that’s just how it works in the world of Time. “That’s the deal”. 

And, because Jack accepts that he’s living in the world of Time, when the coin flips, he’s okay with it. 


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Movies

Top rated
My movies page

Rated 21 movies

My feed

neotheognis posted a review of By the Sea

I Awake To See That No One Is Free

“This one is kinda simple yet subtle, like a painting; I couldn’t give it a straight review myself, so I’ll just give you a juxtaposition with the lyrics of a song which I’ve always thought is about anxiety, although anxiety can be related to other things…. 

“I awake to find no p” read more

1 day, 7 hours ago
By the Sea
 By the Sea 8/10
1 day, 7 hours ago
neotheognis posted a review of Unbroken

Personal War Drama

“It’s the patriotic Angelina Jolie! 

“If you can take it you can make it…. A moment of pain, is worth a lifetime of glory!” 

The guy’s a high school runner, and then a soldier, obviously, but as an intellectual I relate to that philosophy, because thinking about ornery” read more

2 weeks, 3 days ago
neotheognis added 4 items to their collection
Nights and Weekends (2008)

have watched

9/10

Little Women (2019)

have watched

9/10

Lady Bird (2017)

have watched

9/10

Unbroken

9/10


2 weeks, 3 days ago

And There Was No Music At The End

“It’s an ‘adventure’ story, albeit a more serious and political one than some are—although almost any adventure story has a sort of muted politics to it, more so than if you stay at home. 

It’s the sort of movie which is better than the Mr Collins/Catherine de Bourgh crowd will s” read more

3 weeks, 4 days ago
neotheognis added 3 items to their collection
Father Goose

have watched

7/10

Lilies of the Field

have watched

8/10

The Wilby Conspiracy                                  (1975)

8/10


3 weeks, 4 days ago
neotheognis added 3 items to their collection
Madam Satan (1930)

have watched

7/10

Samson and Delilah (1949)

have watched

8/10

The Ten Commandments (1956)

9/10


3 weeks, 6 days ago
neotheognis posted a review of Santa Fe

The Lincoln Southerner

“This movie kinda reminded me of my father, or at least his image of himself. I guess that’s why I watched it. Here you have the Unambiguously Heroic Hero, who’s loving and tough, and the joker brothers, who are vicious and weak, you know. (I guess there’s also a girl! Gotta prove you’re stra” read more

3 weeks, 6 days ago
neotheognis added 3 items to their collection
Before Dawn

have watched

7/10

Santa Fe

have watched

7/10

Martin Luther

8/10


4 weeks ago
neotheognis added 3 items to their collection
Mo

have watched

8/10

Malcolm X

have watched

9/10

Do the Right Thing (1989)

9/10


4 weeks, 1 day ago

Love’s Traitor

“There are obviously reasons not to like this movie: woman director (wrong gender); portrayal of gender in war (not romantic or boys’ club-y); both its ambiguity and its moral stance (normally we try to go for one or the other—or better yet, neither!); its portrayal of a lesser known region (you ” read more

4 weeks, 1 day ago
neotheognis posted a review of Shadowlands

Living in the World of Time

“I think it’s fair to say that Jack was not a mystic but an investigator of the ordinary world, (and the magic of the ordinary world), but it’s also clear that his investigations were usually sound, and prepared him to live a decent life, even in that field of personal (romantic!) experience so d” read more

4 weeks, 1 day ago
neotheognis posted a image

1 month ago
neotheognis added 4 items to their collection
Shadowlands

have watched

8/10

Cry Freedom

have watched

8/10

Gandhi

have watched

9/10

In the Land of Blood and Honey

9/10


1 month ago


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