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"Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

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"Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Old 09-24-23, 11:33 PM
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"Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge



Martin (1977)




Selected by mallratcal


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THE COMPLETE STREAMING GUIDE INCLUDING AD-SUPPORTED SERVICES
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These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET list.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.



Spoiler tags aren't always used in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF POSSIBLE SPOILERS.

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2023 DISCUSSION | 2023 LISTS
Old 10-02-23, 10:25 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

I am not finding this anywhere to stream. So how are those who don't own it watching it?
Old 10-03-23, 12:25 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by Spiderbite
I am not finding this anywhere to stream. So how are those who don't own it watching it?
It's on Youtube.

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Old 10-03-23, 10:26 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

That's weird. I even looked on Youtube and did a search and couldn't pull this up. Strange. All I could find were clips.
Old 10-03-23, 01:27 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by Spiderbite
That's weird. I even looked on Youtube and did a search and couldn't pull this up. Strange. All I could find were clips.
I type "movie title + full movie", and that usually takes me to Daily Motion or Youtube and eliminates the clips. What really annoys me are the scam sites on Youtube that promise a movie and then say you have to subscribe to the identity theft page.
Old 10-04-23, 03:12 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

There were some good parts to this, like the home invasion. Also liked the contrast between the black & white then color between his fantasy (or other life). But there were def parts that dragged in this. Read this was supposed to have been like a 2.5 hour film. I guess, for the time, it's good. I just got done seeing the Nic Cage vampire film before this and honestly thought that was a bit better (I enjoyed the comedy to be honest). I just don't get why this is rated so highly though. It's good, but nothing amazing or scary.
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Old 10-04-23, 06:07 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by jacob_b
There were some good parts to this, like the home invasion. Also liked the contrast between the black & white then color between his fantasy (or other life). But there were def parts that dragged in this. Read this was supposed to have been like a 2.5 hour film. I guess, for the time, it's good. I just got done seeing the Nic Cage vampire film before this and honestly thought that was a bit better (I enjoyed the comedy to be honest). I just don't get why this is rated so highly though. It's good, but nothing amazing or scary.
Yeah, I’m glad I saw it, but I probably won’t be buying it unless it’s loaded with special features and $10 or less.
Old 10-04-23, 08:29 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Ugh, poor Martin. I first saw this a few weeks ago when it was still on Shudder. My rewatch this morning didn't improve my outlook. Martin sure is a creep, and this movie dragged on and on. The bursts that did keep my attention were too few and far between. I won't be picking this one up either, as I'm trying to be more space selective (I then turn around a buy the Colombo blu set from Kino).
Old 10-04-23, 11:44 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

I thought this was one of the most realistic "vampire" movies I have ever seen. I was really into it until the last third but it kind of drags too long to get to its conclusion.

I liked how they did away with all the standard tropes and just made it about getting the blood. The first killing is pretty disturbing and gave me a little unease. The home invasion is kinda shocking just how brazen he is the entire time. He gives no fucks and is calm, cool and collected the entire time. Bleak but good ending.

And man...I know this movie was made in the mid-70's but this movie just oozes 70's vibes.

Did anyone enjoy how the first girl killed had a total nighttime face mask and then suddenly it is completely removed a few frames later! And I had to look it up because I could have sworn the girl playing his cousin was Kitty from That 70's Show. It wasn't but they looked pretty similar to me. Especially when you see Kitty with the same haircut and clothes from that time.

This was decent. Can't believe I had never seen it before. Has a good 70's sleazy mood but just runs out of steam unfortunately.

My rating: *** out of *****

Old 10-04-23, 12:49 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

It’s never too distracting but Romero uses a lot of Dutch angles and off center shots here, which I think contributes to the sense of magical realism – the camera is rarely a traditional viewpoint. Relentlessly experimental seeming. I had to google to confirm the original aspect ratio (1.33:1, full screen). Maybe this was also necessary because it gets into a lot of hallways, cars, and other narrow spaces which feel authentic (not stage-y). Speaking of which the dated aesthetic of Martin is amusing ['oozes 70s' is right!] – even the soundtrack.

The opening a great – a generic seeming train then suddenly a syringe and attack. Excellent in your face way to make the macabre seem routine right down to the everyday striped t-shirt Martin wears. “I’m always very careful with the needle” (also a great euphemism considering how we find later Martin orbits sexy stuff from a distance). I wish the uncle didn’t spoil the vampire theme so early on (and in such a simple way, “Nosferatu”) because it’s so wonderfully modernized to seem cryptic especially at first but even the uncle’s antics feel strange. My favorite moment might be when Martin invades the home and the woman has to tell her male companion that she doesn’t even know the seemingly upset guy at her door (sexual norms seem like a subtext).

The awkward way Martin talks about ‘sexy stuff’ is brilliant paralleling how repressed he seems in general except for with the far out vampire persona. I don’t usually like backstory but there seems to be some implied history with him being so subdued in general and depending on the kindness of an uncle (Martin prequel ripe). I dont think they sell Martin well enough as a 'kid' throughout the film since the first scene is so menacing. It is cool how what ultimately undoes him is normal human intimacy (rather his uncle mistaking him as the murdered due to his connection with the suicide).

Last edited by Undeadcow; 10-04-23 at 03:40 PM.
Old 10-04-23, 02:37 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

I also like this film quite a bit. Part of me would love to see that monster 2.5 hour cut, but it would be more of a curiosity than anything else. Even the pacing in this theatrical cut is a bit off.
Romero regular Amplas does a great job as Martin. I saw Day of the Dead first, so I’ll always remember him as one of the scientists in the base.
Old 10-04-23, 03:48 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Somehow I've never watched Martin until now, and I have to confess I was underwhelmed. Even though it's ony 90 minutes, the movie just dragged on and on. Whether he really is a vampire or just a deranged serial killer, Amplas as Martin is a terrifying creature and is easily the best part of the movie. The rest of the film made little sense, and apart from the home invasion scene, it felt lifeless and dull.
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Old 10-04-23, 05:56 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

I'd been waiting a while to watch this one, so I'm glad I enjoyed it. I liked the realistic take with no magic, because maybe he was just crazy.

Need to get the 4K version now.
Old 10-04-23, 06:00 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Listened to the directors commentary with the producers which was interesting since richard rubinstein has a negative reputation over dawn of the dead. Very good commentary with a few dead moments.
7/10
Old 10-04-23, 08:12 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

This is one of those films I wanted to like a lot more than I did. I heard about it for years before I was able to watch it the first time. I was surprised because it had such a great reputation. I found it just OK. Much "smaller" in scope and grittier/more ordinary that I expected. It plays very much like real life, which is the point, but it's not an attractive film, if that makes any sense. The Martin character is not at all likeable. I watched it again a few years ago and appreciated it a little more without the huge expectations of my first viewing, but I still didn't love it. And on this rewatch, I was a little bored. I give it a 6/10.
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Old 10-04-23, 08:44 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

I guess I'll ultimately concur with what most have said. The movie really grabbed me in the beginning. I was really liking the movie, and then it just started stalling. I felt my mind sort of wander for a while but got back into it by the end. The staking at the end actually made me jump a bit. It was a good effect. I'll likely revisit it again one of these challenges. It's one I could see possibly being better on second viewing.
Old 10-04-23, 10:05 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

How about the awesome 70's bathroom where you could take a piss next to a too close for comfort second urinal with no barrier while a guy takes a shit in a stall with no door right behind you?

Ah...good times.
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Old 10-05-23, 02:06 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by clckworang
I guess I'll ultimately concur with what most have said. The movie really grabbed me in the beginning. I was really liking the movie, and then it just started stalling. I felt my mind sort of wander for a while but got back into it by the end. The staking at the end actually made me jump a bit. It was a good effect. I'll likely revisit it again one of these challenges. It's one I could see possibly being better on second viewing.
I've seen this before ... and I thought it helped watching it again knowing what I was in for. I liked the 70s aesthetic, the different and ambiguous take on the vampire story, the contrast of the intense attack scenes with the slower paced character study.

The ending was really abrupt though. There's 3 minutes left in the running time, and it doesn't seem like it's anywhere close to being over. Then ... WHAM!
Old 10-05-23, 10:34 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Ernest Borgnine was amazing in this!
Old 10-05-23, 11:50 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Watched this with my daughter last night, we were both very uncomfortable with the rapey scene in the opening, but we settled in and ended up enjoying the film. Very different kind of vampire movie. My daughter pointed out that Martin seemed very autistic coded to her, and I can't say that I disagree with that sentiment. It probably wasn't seen that way in the 70's and probably not was Romero intended, but knowing the traits that we understand now, he does come off that way, which made the film even more interesting to us. Abrupt ending was great. He did not commit the murder that he was staked for, but he certainly did have it coming.
Old 10-05-23, 09:52 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

This is easily top 5 Romero for me. I've always loved the realism and almost documentary-style approach, and can see why it was Romero's favorite film. Amplas absolutely embodies the Martin character with hardly a word spoken. I've always leaned towards the vampirism being a tangible thing, if only for the convincing performance of Lincoln Maazel throwing out Dr. Loomis vibes. If the longer cut ever sees the light of day, I'd love to see Cuda's character fleshed out a bit more as well as some backstory on the European ancestry.

The SS UHD is fantastic extras-wise, but does it really warrant a 4K transfer? Listened to the new Travis Crawford (RIP) commentary, which covers Romero's career more than a scene-specific breakdown of the film. He mentions a good portion of additional scenes focus on Martin's fascination with magic and affair with Mrs. Santini. Also news to me was the 2H 45M cut (the 3 films reels in the auction semi-confirm this) is entirely B&W, which seems odd considering that's how the flashback scenes were differentiated. That really does sound like a one and done watch simply for comparison's sake to me. Not that it matters since the owner apparently doesn't want to bother with licensing it.
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Old 10-05-23, 10:57 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by Chad

The SS UHD is fantastic extras-wise, but does it really warrant a 4K transfer?
Everything warrants a 4K transfer in my opinion.
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Old 10-06-23, 11:39 AM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by Spiderbite
Everything warrants a 4K transfer in my opinion.
I'm probably in the opposite camp here regarding 4K. Those SOV Culture Shock blus should just be on DVD...Yes II know blasphemy.
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Old 10-06-23, 12:43 PM
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Re: "Martin" Reviews/Discussion - 2023 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by WillieMLF
I'm probably in the opposite camp here regarding 4K. Those SOV Culture Shock blus should just be on DVD...Yes II know blasphemy.
I get what you are saying but I just like to watch every movie in the best transfer possible. I want to see it as it was filmed and what it looked like to the director at the time he filmed it.

Just like I want my music off the soundboard quality. I don't want a 5th generation copy of anything.

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