John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum
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If you are willing to commit nearly four hours of your life to this film, as I was, you are essentially a masochist because this film is not worth it. Yes, the cinematography was beautiful and there were a few lovely moments but overall this film was just sort of nothing as it ambled along at a remarkably slow rate. I can appreciate Kevin Costner's talents as an actor and I enjoy his presence in another extremely long film, JFK (1991), but that film used his talents correctly and is directed with the Midas touch of early 1990s Oliver Stone. I was dreading watching this film and I found that is was just as bad as I expected.
John J. Dunbar, Kevin Costner, is a Union soldier during the Civil War. We meet him in 1863 as he is a man who struggles to find himself and requests to be posted to the Western Frontier near a settlement of Sioux tribe members. He documents his experiences in his journal and begins to contact the nearby Native Americans. Though they initially struggle with communication he is able to befriend tribe leader Kicking Bird, Graham Greene, and meet his love interest Stands with a Fist, Mary McDonnell, a white woman who was taken in by the tribe as a child after her family was murdered by the Pawnee. He is able to unite with the members of the tribe and find who he is really is as they face enemies including opposing tribes and the Union army.
The best parts of the film were the cinematography and the production values, especially when considering the fact that the film cost only $22 million to make. Dean Semler, who has worked on many Mel Gibson related films, is able to capture the picturesque open plains of the Western United States in all their natural beauty. Shots of trees and various elements of the natural environment feature prominently in scenes of conversation between various characters and this adds a brightness to the otherwise dull moments that is necessary. The film also looks expensive as everything from the costumes to the homesteads feels period appropriate. This helps you buy into the film as a ï¿ 1/2~serious' piece of work because you are not distracted by the poor sets and I applaud Costner for hiring the right people for the job.
Beyond these two things there is not much else positive I can say about this film. It's twice as long as it needs to be as we get far too many montages of Costner sitting in front of fires and sweeping shots of the frontier. No real tension is built in the film as attempts are made at showing that the Native Americans are flawed and Dunbar is captured and tortured by Union soldiers at the end of the film but Costner's direction never convinces us that there is any real urgency to the proceedings. Several of the fights could have been cut down, the love scene between Dunbar and Stands with a Fist was oddly structured and I needed less time with Costner alone. Costner's voiceover seems disinterested and most of it doesn't tell us much about the character, especially when considering that Goodfellas (1990) contains some of the best use of voiceover I have ever seen. All of these issues, mostly the length, caused watching the film to be a profoundly dull experience as it never amazed me in the way that Ben-Hur (1959), another similarly long film, did.
This is a film that is objectively not as good as Goodfellas, a long film that zips by at an alarming pace as it is informative and enjoyable. Everything that Goodfellas does with grace and care, Dances with Wolves seemingly can't get a handle on. I understood who Henry Hill was in just a few minutes through his opening monologue where I spent 4 hours finding out about a fairly dull soldier in this film. If the Academy had given Scorsese Best Picture and Best Director in this year they would have been doing the right thing and we wouldn't have to think about The Departed (2006) being the only he film he's directed to earn the big one. This is not a film that's worth your time, if you want a good Best Picture winning Western watch the much shorter Unforgiven (1992).
Amazingly made movie!
Ludicrously long but like when you're reading a good novel (and really this has to be watched in installments) you do still find yourself enjoying the story and engrossed as you go through it. The weakest section is the final half hour because let's face it, he has abandoned his post and he has basically just been playing dress up with the Native Americans. The preceding 3/4 of the film though are great fun. Overly romantic, yes, a bit preachy, yes...but still great fun. Slow, grand, epic Cinema. Plus I do just love Costner.
An absolute marvel. Dances With Wolves is Kevin Costner's masterpiece. There is a reason he wins two academy awards for Best Director and Best Picture. The cinematography is breathtaking, and the story is groundbreaking. A must see!!!
This movie won Best Picture for a reason.
One of my favorite movies of all time
I was more than a little skeptical about Dances with Wolves. I knew that it was another interpretation of the same kind of story as Pocahontas or Fern Gully, and I got frustrated with Avatar for being so derivative because it recycled this storyline again. What Dances with Wolves proved to me is that it was not the familiar story that made Avatar disappointing, but the way it was told. This movie is magical. I was taken on a journey with Kevin Costner’s character that was so wonderful. Seeing the gradual development from his first contact to his eventual kinship with the Native Americans was authentic and heartwarming. Nothing about it felt false or unearned. It’s a marvel how a movie like this can manipulate my own perception, without coming out and saying anything. Over time I started to see the white men as a dangerous threat that I was dreading, which is a marvelous feat for a movie to accomplish considering I am a white man. There are so many scenes that are stuck in my head from Dances with Wolves. The story has a number of great highlights, including some intense action sequences that I imagine were a major challenge to film. The cinematography was gorgeous throughout, and did a lot to highlight the beauty of the region. Also the score from John Barry is perfect. I was so enthralled with the film that I was astounded when I saw the time after it ended, because it never felt long, in fact it raced by in no time. If anything I felt there were a few moments that were accelerated a bit too much in the final act, and my one complaint would be the coincidental arrival time of white men as the movie approaches conclusion. That being said, the movie was superb in all other ways, so I hardly noticed any of that. I wish the ending could have gone a little different, but it would have lacked historical accuracy, so the conclusion was exactly what it needed to be. Dances with Wolves is a brilliant film and one I can’t wait to watch again. Ranking on my Flickchart Wins against A Scanner Darkly Wins against Double Indemnity Wins against Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle Loses to Stardust Loses to Monsters, Inc. Wins against On Her Majesty’s Secret Service Wins against Thoroughly Modern Millie Wins against Kill Bill Vol. 1 Loses to The Matrix Loses to Hoosiers Loses to French Kiss Dances with Wolves ranked 154 out of 1594
a rhythmic beat that values..
Dances With Wolves
4 Out Of 5
Dance With Wolves is a character driven feature of an all-lost man that is ready to survive and mold itself into any shape or form for one more chance. The chemistry and the relationship that is built-up among the characters is depicted form the scratch that helps the viewers too connect with the feature; a slick move by the makers.
It is rich on technical aspects like costume design, sound department, background score, cinematography and editing. It is shot beautifully and the camera work is charming and makes it immensely pleasing to encounter with great locations and visuals. The writing is strong especially on character's perspective that is judged, accounted and balanced upon nicely.
The adaptation by Michael Blake of his own novel, is smart and gripping and the primary reason why it works is his awareness of the characters image and the palpable environment offered to it, since the beginning. Kevin Costner; the director, is surprisingly good considering that it is his first project, as it shows a lot of potential since such character driven feature can easily come off as a dull and over-chewing feature if not executed accordingly. Kevin Costner as the protagonist is convincing in his performance along with his supporting cast like Marry McDonnell and Graham Greene.
Dance With Wolves is a rhythmic beat that values its culture and rituals that binds it all to create something colossal out of a mere gesture.
Dances with Wolves is a 1990 American epic Western film starring, directed and produced by Kevin Costner.
AAW GGWD 1001
Epic western about riding horses, chasing buffalo, and the frontier. I don't love it as much as I used to. It's too long. Costner could have left out much of the first hour. However, it's still pretty good.