[movies] General Movie Chat

Blackjack
in Off-Topic
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Some 25 years ago (!) I used to enjoy participating in weekly general movie chats at places like Prodigy and America Online's chat rooms. You can Google those things. =)

Thought I'd try it here. I guess the idea is if you want to post briefly about a movie or something about moviegoing but don't feel like doing a specific thread on it, maybe here's the place.
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  • 101 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    Loved the first Pacific Rim and the sequel looks stupidly spectacular. In a good way.
  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited July 23
    Buying Tickets Via Movie Theaters' Apps

    Let's see, I buy most but not all of my tickets via mobile app now. While I love Fandango, currently only using it to order tickets at an AMC theater -- if you have a paid yearly membership, think it's $15 -- does it waive the $1.50 convenience fee. That generally works out for me in terms of 'paying for' the membership fee.

    I used the Regal app to buy a ticket to a noon RPX show of Nolan's Dunkirk today. Regal's rewards card is free, so even on the Regal app, you still pay the $1.50 convenience fee, alas.

    But it's nice in terms of earning more rewards points. Includes stuff like free drinks or popcorn, upgrades to sizes of those, and eventually a "2-D Restricted movie ticket." I earned the latter, hope to use it on maybe Wonder Woman again at some point. Since you can't use them on newer releases that say " no passes," I tend to find them of limited value.

    They have a 500 extra bonus points deal going on now if you buy a Dunkirk ticket using the Regal movie app.

    Food
    I've a few times this summer used AMC's app to order food for pickup. The app lets you schedule your pickup for a fairly precise (something like 15 minute increments), and it's always been ready when I got there at the separate pick-up stands. If you're ordering multiple items, they'll put them in a relatively nice, white, AMC-logo'd paper bag. There's no extra cost for ordering this way ahead of time.

    This is really great during summer when concessions are often mobbed. Also if you're ordering hot food (pizza, chicken tenders, cheese sticks etc., the nutrious greats :D), then you don't have to wait the 5-10 minutes it generally takes them to prepare it.

    I hope Regal offers this eventually too. :)

    I know some newer AMC locations even deliver directly to your seat in certain recliner-type seating screens; mine's been around maybe 10 years now, so it doesn't offer that.
  • Blackjack
    GT Member
    I found Dunkirk quite riveting. Really got wrapped up in it. While as PG-13 it's not Saving Private Ryan in your face bout violence in war, in its own way it's shocking at times and I found myself rooting for characters even when I knew nothing about them (almost nobody has a name, and only a couple have any sort of back story).

    In its own way, it does some intriguing things with the "order of time," maybe not to the extent of a Memento, but you can sort of see a thread there I think.
  • naednek
    GT Moderator
    Just got back from Dunkirk and I have to say the musical score is what made the movie in terms of experience. Stressful from the start and it rarely gives you a break. Yes the movie is good on it's own, but the music is really the driving force.

    The back and forth between the timelines was a bit confusing for a while. I had to ask myself why am I seeing dogfighting in the day, then all of a sudden it's night.

    I loved that it was light on special effects, as in not so much in your face. Overall, a good movie.
  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited July 24
    Yeah, I also liked the concept of seeing the same event from multiple different viewpoints.

    Nolan's been saying in interviews that he wanted the air combat to be as practical (non digital FX) as possible. I think it's tough because there's really so few WWII-vintage airplanes still flying at this point, 75 some odd years later. Also read that his film editor's first take, Nolan thought would've been great for an all out action film, but that it wasn't quite realistic and gritty enough for what Dunkirk was trying for -- he said the emphasis was on communicating how difficult it was to 'lead' an enemy aircraft when firing at it.

    If I see it again, I'd like to see it on 70mm somewhere. It just seems in my area that so many screens are almost becoming square rather than ultra wide. The emphasis seems more on getting screens top-to-bottom as tall as usual, not so much on getting the screen/auditorium ultra-wide.

    Only reason I might not see it again is so much of the movie is suspenseful and what's going to happen and who's going to make it. I would enjoy it still on another view, but barring a Men in Black memory erasure gizmo, I think I would miss the surprise factor on 2nd go.

  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited July 26
    My brother came up to take my mom to a medical appointment (Tuesday's my weekly crunch day at work, and we're short handed on top of that this week), and later texted me for a suggestion on a movie to see -- he had seen Wonder Woman and enjoyed it but wanted to see something he hadn't.

    I recommended:
    • Baby Driver
    • Battle for the Planet of the Apes
    • The Big Sick
    • Spider-Man: Homecoming
    He went with Battle for the Planet of the Apes and said he liked it much more than he expected to. I liked the prior two films in the series, just this finale spoke more to me. I found it very moving. And I could see it seguing in sort of a subtle fashion back into the 1968 Charlton Heston-starring original.

    I think if I saw the '68 original now, I would better understand where Dr. Zaius and all his hatred and paranoia of "man" comes from. And also just understand why the humans in that era are all mute. Sometimes I don't think it's worth going back through prequels and trying to detail everything that happened (*cough cough* Star Wars). I think in this case it works even though these most recent films can stand by themselves, imho. :)
  • farley2k
    GT Moderator
    Seems like The Dark Tower is pretty meh..

    Sitting at 21% on Rotten Tomatoes
    https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/the_dark_tower_2017

    I guess I can skip it.
  • Isgrimnur
    GT Member
    I'm sure you can find a better way to spend your time and money.

    1yGNMNc.png

  • EngineNo9
    GT Member
    Isgrimnur wrote: »
    I'm sure you can find a better way to spend your time and money.

    1yGNMNc.png

    Definitely! Time to watch some funny poop emojis! :tongue:
  • Bullwinkle
    GT Member edited August 3
    Ooh, they have a movie with funny poop emojis, too? I know about the unfunny one...


    Come to think of it, that kid from Dunkirk never got the chance to poop. That's kinda funny. Er, spoilers?
  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited August 4
    The Emoji movie and probably about 95% of Adam Sandler's so-called movie star career ... there is no explanation for some things in life. :s

    I definitely still feel like Wonder Woman simply gave me the most joy this summer and at least for me (and I see a lot of folks on Twitter, yes including guys say same) was probably the first movie since a few 1980s classics (Raiders of the Lost Ark and Empire Strikes back) that I just enjoyed enough to keep running back to see it. And if you asked me back in May, I would've maybe said it sounded sorta dumb, and would I even bother to see it at all? Movies are funny. :)

    A lot of Marvel or the JJ Abrams era Star Trek movies I've run back to see several times but usually around 4-5 times I just hit a wall and say that's enough. And for some reason my affection for WW was different and I never hit that wall. :)

    I enjoyed Spider-Man: Homecoming (3 times) and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (twice) very much.

    Battle for the Planet of the Apes moved me (my brother said same when he saw it) far more than I expected. Dunkirk was riveting. Baby Driver was fun, The Big Sick was funny and moving. Just for whatever reason I didn't have any real desire to run back and see those again.

    My mom's suffering from hip and back issues, and other than taking her to Wonder Woman and then her and my aunt to see it again, I didn't get to take her to much of anything this summer, which was kind of a bummer.

    I think she would've enjoyed Spider-Man: Homecoming (she watches Zendaya's sitcom on Nickolodeon) and The Big Sick in particular. Maybe I can catch her up on those on DVD later in the year, though she's loathe to ever sit down for a DVD -- she can watch a movie forever on Turner Classic Movies, but if you pop a DVD in the player, her mind wanders. :D

    Angelika's showing a 30th anniversary screening of The Princess Bride this Saturday morning, and I might go see that. I'd marked down their Friday-Saturday late shows of Predator later this month, but I just don't know if love Predator THAT much. I did that for Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan and had a blast, but that's just a different situation. :)

    I have my fingers crossed that 2018 might inspire Angelika to screen some 30th anniversary stuff like Die Hard. Which i did see at theaters in Virginia and DC in summer 1988 but it would be a treat to see it in a theater again next year. :)
  • naednek
    GT Moderator
    is that chart for just a week? If not, I'm a bit shocked that WW only made 3.4 million.
  • MonkeyFinger
    GT Member
    Just this week, I assume. Gross so far is almost $800 million.
  • Isgrimnur
    GT Member
    Yup, just the week's snapshot.
  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited August 8
    I think the continuing question on fans minds is why hasn't WB/DC confirmed Patty Jenkins as returning for Wonder Woman 2 yet, especially given the Dec. 2019 planned release date? I'm sure her agent's negotiating for more a "marketing piece of the pie" or percentage points of box office if they want her back. She seems like a loyal soldier so to speak, and doesn't say anything about this type of stuff on her Twitter feed.

    While I'm sure they could find another director if they wanted to, I just don't want them to turn the reigns over to somebody who doesn't have a vested interest in the character -- as with say, X-Men The Last Stand going to Brett Ratner.

    I hear good things about the Annabelle sequel (spin-off from The Conjuring). The first one was maligned, but this follow up, Annabelle Creation, is directed by the Lights Out director, and I really dug that horror film. I may try to catch it this weekend.
  • Blackjack
    GT Member
    What I really miss in August is a solid -- sometimes spectacular, sometimes at least OK -- Harrison Ford actioner like The Fugitive, Clear and Present Danger, or Air Force One.

    When he started making shaky dreck like Firewall -- which seemed to want to be like one of the above, but was unmemorable at best -- I was bummed. You used to be able to count on a good Harrison Ford thriller to send out the movie summer in August.
  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited September 6
    BREAKING NEWS: Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow is out as director of #StarWars: Episode IX.
    Shoot. I guess Tweets don't auto-embed here anymore?

    *The Book of Henry sounded so abominable and even offensive in its plot, I can't help thinking Lucasarts saw that and thought, "What the HECK were we thinking? This director is NUTS!" :p
  • Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I never understood the idea of handing the final movie in the new trilogy to a director, who at the time, had no established reputation and whose only movie of note was Jurassic World, which isn't exactly a memorable movie. It came across as an out of left field major risk.

    Rian Johnson, I could understand. He did episodes of Breaking Bad and two well regarded movies. Still a risk because he was a relative unknown, but Looper at least showed me he had great potential.
  • Bullwinkle
    GT Member
    I never understood the idea of handing the final movie in the new trilogy to a director, who at the time, had no established reputation and whose only movie of note was Jurassic World, which isn't exactly a memorable movie. It came across as an out of left field major risk.

    Rian Johnson, I could understand. He did episodes of Breaking Bad and two well regarded movies. Still a risk because he was a relative unknown, but Looper at least showed me he had great potential.

    Agreed, though potential alone isn't enough, which was my big fear with Trevorrow. He might be a good director one day, but it's too soon to be handing him the reins. Although Johnson isn't much more established, it seemed like less of a risk.

    OTOH, the big fear now are the swirling rumors I've heard that this may be clearing the way for Lucas to step in as director. Oh, god, please no.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member edited September 6
    That has to be some segment of fandom's wet dream. Disney has deviated so far from what Lucas originally conceptualized that he cannot possibly be interested in directing the 3rd movie. Lucasfilm and Disney want to make sci-fi action movies. Lucas' vision was more sci-fi soap opera.

    Can't remember where I saw it but the supposed early front runner for ep. IX is to bring Rian Johnson back. From Disney's standpoint that would make sense. All the public comments from Johnson and Kathleen Kennedy are that the collaborative process has been smooth and they all seem to be on the same page in terms of what the vision is for the characters and the story. After Last Jedi comes out, the back story and character motivations have all been well established so it doesn't seem like a lot of new exposition will be necessary. Bringing in some sort of inspired, out of the box choice for director would be a big risk, which clearly management is rethinking.
  • whiteboyskim
    GT Member
    I guess I was only one of about four people total who actually saw Valerian in the theaters, considering it opened Friday and was gone by that Monday. It wasn't a terrible movie, but there were so many things wrong with it that I could blather on for three pages without repeating myself. In short, it was a series of vignettes strung together in lieu of a coherent plot. Why, you ask? Because the central mystery to the entire film is solved by the audience right from the start. Once you're told what happened during a certain event, it's painfully obvious where the film is going.

    The movie then spun off two or three different subplots to characters investigating said non-mystery WHILE COMPLETELY IGNORING A MURDER TYING IN TO IT.

    Effects work and costumes were amazing though, so it had that going for it. I'd still rate it 1/5 and that's without even taking into account the lazy acting, lack of any chemistry between the two leads, and peripheral characters who dance in and out of the non-story without leaving any memorable moments behind.

    My Fair Lady and I did see Annabelle: Creation this weekend and I was really surprised. For the most part, it's the same scare over and over and over again so for a while I was getting bored and frustrated with it. But then it starts to take a somewhat darker turn and then I started getting interested. If you've seen it, it's right around when Anthony LaPaglia's character finds out a certain room has been opened. From that point on, I was into it.

    The real fun is when things go off the cliff. You might have seen the ad where the girl throws the doll down the well. By that point, shit's gotten real and chaos is starting to rear its head. After that moment, all hell breaks loose and the resolution to it genuinely surprised me. But then they things kept going and they managed to tie this film into the beginning of the other, much lesser, Annabelle film and did so in a way that makes the opening of that movie important to the series. It's like they had a perfectly credible way for the doll to become possessed, but thought they could make a better movie. So they did, and tied things together very well. If you're going to see this, you'll get your money's worth and the ending is worth it.

    It's also worth noting that there is absolutely no reason whatsoever for these movies to exist. Conjuring was fantastic, and I liked a lot of Conjuring 2. I don't need a backstory on a freaky possessed doll, nor do a need a backstory movie on a freaky demon nun from a sequel (coming summer of 2018, btw). They have the perfect setup for a franchise anyway - put the Warrens in spiritual danger where their love and faith is brutally tested under a variety of challenges. Boom.

    Heck, they could even pull straight from their case files and ramp up the ghosts and hauntings in all manner of ways. It's not like America lacks for unique ghost stories or haunted environments. But that's my two cents.
  • whiteboyskim
    GT Member
    That has to be some segment of fandom's wet dream. Disney has deviated so far from what Lucas originally conceptualized that he cannot possibly be interested in directing the 3rd movie. Lucasfilm and Disney want to make sci-fi action movies. Lucas' vision was more sci-fi soap opera.

    Can't remember where I saw it but the supposed early front runner for ep. IX is to bring Rian Johnson back. From Disney's standpoint that would make sense. All the public comments from Johnson and Kathleen Kennedy are that the collaborative process has been smooth and they all seem to be on the same page in terms of what the vision is for the characters and the story. After Last Jedi comes out, the back story and character motivations have all been well established so it doesn't seem like a lot of new exposition will be necessary. Bringing in some sort of inspired, out of the box choice for director would be a big risk, which clearly management is rethinking.

    Disney clearly wants to imprint the Marvel model on the SW franchise and just crank these things out, quality be damned. They have the Star Wars branding on them, and it's all about the merchandise. The film quality is somewhere on the list of priorities (maybe) but it's not at the top and we all know that. Going forward, Disney will most likely only work with directors who are used to delivering under harsh time constraints and on budget which means TV directors. I know Rian had his share of films, with Brick being a personal favorite, but his work on Breaking Bad is what brought him to Disney's attention. I think you'll see a bunch of the recurring directors from Game of Thrones also move on to film, and I wouldn't be surprised if any one of them wound up helming a Star Wars film someday.

    But I just don't care, I really don't. It pains me to say it as a lifelong SW fan, but I really don't care anymore. Rogue One was meh, Force Awakens was a half-ass retread of the original lacking all the charm and most of the energy, and Last Jedi looks like more of the same. I have no interest in a young Han Solo film, regardless of who directs it, and I don't care about an Obi-Wan story even if they basically have him doing a samurai western in space (which seems to be the recurring concept fanboys want for the character).
  • Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    Well, I guess I am waaaay more optimistic than you regarding what Disney is doing with the Star Wars franchise. I loved Force Awakens and Rogue One. Didn't have any problems with the FA being a glorified remake. Really liked the darker take of Rogue One and think the climactic space battle at the end was stupendous. I'm looking forward to both the Han Solo movie and Last Jedi.

    Thing is, to me, the expectations being set by the original trilogy are completely unrealistic. They've been around for so long and are such a cultural phenomena that any new movies going forward are never going to achieve the standards a lot of people have predetermined. As movie viewers we are much more sophisticated and demanding, and a lot more jaded as well. We've been so numbed by years of CGI fest blockbusters that it's really difficult to be anything other than unrealistic in what we think is a "good" Star Wars movie. The first movie came out at a time socially where no one had seen or experienced anything like it. Plus, there was no social media around to over expose it before it even came out. Those of us old enough to remember it have a decidedly skewed nostalgia based expectation of these new movies. Seems like a lot of people still really cling to that notion. I've reconciled myself that these new movies will never have the emotional and social impact of the originals, and that's okay. As long as I feel they are well done, and so far they have been, then I'm all in and will wholeheartedly embrace the what they are to me as Star Wars.

    But I don't discount anyone who is highly critical or even cynical of what Disney is doing. Star Wars is different things to different people and that's what makes the fan base so awesome.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I guess I was only one of about four people total who actually saw Valerian in the theaters, considering it opened Friday and was gone by that Monday. It wasn't a terrible movie, but there were so many things wrong with it that I could blather on for three pages without repeating myself. In short, it was a series of vignettes strung together in lieu of a coherent plot. Why, you ask? Because the central mystery to the entire film is solved by the audience right from the start. Once you're told what happened during a certain event, it's painfully obvious where the film is going.

    The movie then spun off two or three different subplots to characters investigating said non-mystery WHILE COMPLETELY IGNORING A MURDER TYING IN TO IT.

    Effects work and costumes were amazing though, so it had that going for it. I'd still rate it 1/5 and that's without even taking into account the lazy acting, lack of any chemistry between the two leads, and peripheral characters who dance in and out of the non-story without leaving any memorable moments behind.

    I love Luc Besson as a director and I SO wanted to love Valerian but it pains me to say that Besson has seen better days as a writer and director. There were elements that were truly amazing, like the marketplace chase. Creative and well done. My biggest problem was that the main lead, Dane DeHaan, was TERRIBLE. Both leads really were completely miscast, but I was okay with Cara Delavigne even though she is not a good actor. But holy smokes, I don't know what Besson saw in DeHaan as agent Valerian. Even if the plot had big problems, at least good casting of the leads could have compensated for the weak story and make it at least entertaining. It's sad because Valerian clearly was a labor of love for Besson, who has wanted to make this movie ever since he was a kid. Unfortunately, the problem with fanboys realizing their dream is that they get carried away and lack the objectivity to see what works and what doesn't.

  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited September 7
    I guess the only way to get movie chat going here is to argue about Star Wars. :#

    My 2 cents is asking Rian Johnson to finish the trilogy seems like the logical choice, but does Lucasfilm/Disney do that BEFORE the 2nd film opens in December, when they'll know if we as fans really respond to it. I mean, it's great the 2nd film's production went so smoothly, but many popular movies come out of problematic productions, including The Force Awakens.

    I guess the caveat is Johnson really seems much the auteur. Everyone at Lucasfilm/Disney and the cast seemed to love his script for The Last Jedi. And so I don't know if you ask him to work with a script that's already under development, or ask him to "doctor" it, or do you just throw it out and ask him to rush together a 3rd script on his own?

    I don't think JJ Abrams is an option because I remember in interviews him saying that filming in London and the exhaustive publicity-related visits for The Force Awakens were grueling, he didn't like being away from his wife/kids in the U.S. for so long. I assume the 3rd film would remain UK-based, so they need a director comfortable with that location and time commitment.

    I could make all sorts of director suggestions and guesses if Rian Johnson passes, but unless they want to bump the May 2019 release date, imho they've got to find someone passionate about Star Wars, able and willing to work fast, maybe good at script doctoring an existing script if they feel it's too late to do a fresh one from scratch. While that could perhaps scream "Joss Whedon," he's tied up with the Justice League reshoots through at least November.

    I'd certainly support them talking to female directors and God Forbid someone who's not a White Guy as possible director candidates too. While I obviously loved Wonder Woman, I presume Patty Jenkin's doing the sequel and really Wonder Woman was a passion project -- she's stated in interviews she's really got no real interest in Star Wars. Someone suggested Ryan Coogler (Creed, Black Panther), but he'll be tied up on Black Panther through next February-March, don't think they can wait that long.

    I think as both they and Marvel have seen, you don't have to give the reins to someone with a long action movie/sci-fi/comic book track record. I mean, it just should be someone with real passion for the material, and a knack for characters and character moments.

    And maybe this is "duh," but Lucasfilm/Disney maybe needs to truly figure out what its "creative vision" is and what it specifically requires from its directors, and be up front about it in the hiring process. I just get the impression some of these canned or bumped directors and writers didn't understand the expectations, or thought they'd have more creative freedom then they were given.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    To get off the Star Wars track a bit, some random movies I got around to seeing since I missed them when they were in theaters:

    Alien Covenant- the good news? Not as much an incoherent mess as Prometheus, but the bad news is that it was not that much different than the first Alien movie, albeit with some origin elements thrown in. The Alien franchise seems like it is just floundering now not knowing what it wants to be.

    Ghost in the Shell- quite honestly, I was really surprised at how much I liked this. In hindsight, I thought all the whitewashing criticism was way overblown and kind of unfair. The notion of Major Kusanagi's identity and ethnic origin was addressed in the movie and was in a roundabout way, reflective of the anime. Unfortunately, pointing that out would have given away a big spoiler in the movie. The overall look of movie felt pretty faithful to the anime and it was clear to me they wanted to make a live action version that would respect the original source.

    Kong Skull Island- not much subtlety to this movie. About as mindless a monster movie as it could possibly be, but it was still well done and the Kong vs other monster battle royale fights were entertaining. Again, another movie I had low expectations of that pleasantly surprised me.

    John Wick 2- LOVED the first movie and while l liked the sequel, it seemed to be missing that something that made the first one so good. The fight scenes were on par and the pencil scene was unforgettable, but as is usually the case, the sequel is not as good as the first one.
  • Isgrimnur
    GT Member
    I watched Dunkirk last month, and enjoyed it greatly. I thought the sequence in the beached boat was well done with the tension, as well as the flying scenes. I was able to read the outcome of the shots just through the gunsight camera when it cut, as it was obvious when a pilot would not have pulled enough of a lead. Too much stick time in X-Wing, I guess. (There's my SW reference.)
  • whiteboyskim
    GT Member
    Honest Trailer for Kong Skull Island pretty much nails my issues with it. Really amazing giant monster fights and.... a bunch of other people talking, none of whom is particularly memorable.

    It makes a point about a lack of character arcs that I think applies to the John Wick series too, but the difference is how they handle things. In Kong, none of the characters have a character arc and are really trying to survive. Which is fine, but at least make them interesting. Now look at John Wick. Zero character arc in both films, but he's made into a somewhat interesting character by being surrounded by characters who ARE interesting and a world that oozes cool out of every frame. So even though both films have been the same thing of Keanu Reeves shoots every person he sees right in the face, and the third one will likely be the same, I love it. I can't wait for the third one.

    I started the year wondering what kind of universe had I found myself in where I was more interested in a Keanu Reeves movie than I was in a Star Wars film, and now I still think I'm in bizarro world.
  • Blackjack
    GT Member edited September 11
    So I saw "It" on Sunday. Thoroughly entertaining and very appealing characters, although like King's novel it essentially posits that ALL adults are horrific excuses for human beings.

    I'm not sure I'd say it ever really scared me per se. While you could probably call it a blender mix of sources like Stand By Me, Netflix's Stranger Things, The Goonies, maybe a little Nightmare on Elm Street and John Carpenter's The Thing, it has its own feel, and didn't really feel like a lazy mashup or something while I watched it.

    While I did buy King's 'It" in paperback when it released in 1986, it's crazy long (1,100 pages+), and I couldn't really say whether I ever read it all the way through.

    I'm as stunned as anyone that "It" apparently did $123M weekend business, which I think is more than any of the summer blockbusters did opening weekend. Maybe everyone was just hording money during the horrific August movie month.

    I could see myself maybe sitting through it one more time, there's a few scenes that rush by, where I maybe missed something.
  • Bullwinkle
    GT Member
    I created a page for Star Wars Episode IX with the fresh news that JJ is back writing and directing.
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