Saturday, 10 November 2007

Valkyrie trailer

OMG...TOm Cruise and his non attempt at even an English accent will ruin this. Or perhaps it is just another way for movies to re-write history saying America as responsible for all the good in the war. Lets hope the rest of the British cast are stellar to make up for it.

Should have been HUGE!!

My god, if this is not one of the best revenge songs ever, I do not know what this is. A big 'up yours' to her ex girl group Brownstone, Kina shouted back with "Girl From the Gutter" and my word do I ever love this song.
She is also a beauty isn't she?

Friday, 9 November 2007

The most exciting category!

I am going to take a step back from the Oscars and all that silly silly nonsense and take a look at what is heating up to be one of the most exciting acting categories in a while.
That my friends is the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical.
We have an influx of potential nominations which is fantastic. With just five little ole spot to fill who it is going to be?
A role call for the funny ladies if you will, in no particular order:

1 -Will is be the young starlet chanelling Edith Piaf - Marion Cotilard?

2 -Or will it be the young up and comer who has a break out (again) as pregnant teen – Ellen Page?

3 -Will it be the brilliant and effervesant Disney Princess – Amy Adams?

4 -Perhaps previous nominee Laura Linney will make it for “The Savages”?

5 -Could anyone forget Tracy Turnblad herself – Nikki Blonsky?

6 -Pervious winner Nicole Kidman will hope she can make it again in “Margot at the Wedding”

7 -Shall they call out the name of another expectant mother, this time a “Waitress” – Keri Russell?

8 -Will “Sweeney Todd” partner in crime make it into the mix – Helena Bonham Carter?

9 -Who could forget another “Knocked Up” lady this year? – Katherine Heigl?

10 -They could easily go for “Charlie Wilson’s” partner with Julia Roberts (they are star f*ckers those pesky Globes)?

How refreshing to see such a competitive race this year. Could the world be lightening up, or is it just the women. All the men seem to be very angry, lost or grieving this year!

Crowded race….the drama category will probably be Julie Christie, Cate Blanchett, Keira Knightly, Angelina Jolie and Jodie Foster. You can probably put safe money on that (unless Giovanna Mezzogiornia is wonderful in “Love in the time of Cholera”)

Thursday, 8 November 2007

Oscar on the horizon.

I get a little bored posting about movies getting made. Since my viewership is a little down and the comments dwindle I thought I would do a massive movie wrap up.

Lets have a look at some the of the films getting put into production and what it means for the awards races of the future.

Hannibal Lector himself, the endlessly working Anthony Hopkins has signed on to playt the Master of Suspense , Alfred Hitchcock, in an upcoming biopic, to be directed by Ryan Murphy . Murphy is best known for directing “Running With Scissors” , “Nip/Tuck” and “Popular”, so he does have a way with quirk, although these are hardly stellar programs/movies on which to base pedigree. He has three upcoming films in production which all sound very interesting, and could up his caliber. (“Pretty Handsome about a transsexual father, “Dirty Tricks” about the aftermath of Watergate, and the Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts film “Need”. The casts he has collected for these projects are of a very high standard, and he could even direct one or more to Oscar glory before the Hitchcok biopic.…check out the cast lists for these movies here.

The film will open with the making of Psycho, which is a very interesting place to start and will hopefully get the attention of all film geeks. There are rumours circulating that Helen Mirren might play Hitchcock's wife, so this could be a major awards magnet, especially for the actors. Maybe Hitchcock will FINALLY get his Oscar.

Only two years since his last film, but it seems Terence Malick's getting ready for another film, and it's a script he's been working on for nearly thirty years. “Tree Of Life” is finally set to go into production, with Heath Ledger and Sean Penn in talks to join the cast.
Filming's due to start in March - which means that Malick will be under some pressure to finish before the actors' strike at the end of June. Any Malick film will already get awards buzz just from hearing his name.

“The Proposition” has its major fans, and got wonderful critical notices. Director John Hillcoat is gearing up to direct Guy Pearce in “The Road” based on a book by Cormac McCarthy about a man and his son walking through a post-apocalyptic landscape in search of water, food and some place of safety.
Guy Pearce is a very talented actor (he nailed Felicia in “Priscilla”!) so with any luck he could show up in awards races…it sounds like he has the entire screentime.
Hopefully shirtless and sweaty.

This news kind of makes me a little queasy, but my friends there will be a “Dances With Wolves” sequal. “The Holy Road” picks up eleven years after Wolves, with Dunbar now married to Stands With Fist and the white man encroaching further on the lives of the Sioux as they build a railway – the titular Holy Road – across the country.
This premise does sound very very good, and I am glad they have decided to so this route. I have always wondered what happened to characters in the future. Did Christian ever get over the death of Satine?
Any way, anything that can get President Laura Roslin aka Mary McDonnell back on the big screen is alright by me.

Director of the moment, Tony Gilroy, is going to direct Julia Roberts and Clive Owen in “Duplicity”.
The couple will be playing corporate spies who work on opposite sides, but unite to stage an elaborate con and rip off corporations by stealing something of great value.
Owen would seen to be a good hand at working with Gilroy, and the material should be right up his alley (where I would like to be). Roberts has not really stretched herself as an actress since “Closer”, so it will be interesting to see what the director can get out of her. He seems to be able to get wonderful performances out of his actors, so we shall see.
Cold be possible Oscar material. Actresses are hardly allowed to play outside the box of grieving mother/wife, whore or icon so it would be nice to have a different role nominated than the usual in Best Actress, and corporate spy would be wonderful…very Faye Dunaway in “Network” – ish.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Heroes vs. Villains.

In looking through the candidates for Best Actor I noticed that there are a hell of a lot of bad characters about. This could be the shadiest Best Actor, like, ever!

We actually have no had a villain in the mix since 2002 bought us the brilliant Bill the Butcher, as played by Daniel Day Lewis. He is back, once again, as bad boy oil tycoon Plainview in “There Will be Blood”
Then there is Sweeney Todd himself, that neck slashing barber from hell as played by Johnny Depp himself (already garnering a rave from AICN).

Then there is Denzel Washington’s drug Barron Frank Lucas in “American Gangster”, not to mention the hired mob thug/driver Nikolai in “Eastern Promises” as played by Viggo Mortensen.
And lets face it, Charlie Wilson is not that noble either, just check out Tom Hanks in the trailer. Slimy and icky. And stunning though he is, Brad Pitt does play mass murderer Jessie James.

I guess dark times, call for dark measures. Many people are saying that there is no way that more than one bad boy will make it in the top five. I SO beg to differ.
Sure there are not a lot of evil doers nominated in lead actor, but there have been.
Cast you mind back seventeen years to 1991 when we not only had Dr. Hannibal Lecter, but we also had Max Cady and Bugsy Siegel. Who is to say it won’t happen again.

These bad boys do have to contend with heroes though, and most of these men are in some form or grief. James McAvoy grieving for love in “Atonement”. Tommy Lee Jones grieving for his son in “In the Valley of Elah”, John Cusack grieving for his wife in “Grace is Gone”, “The Kite Runners” Khalid Abdalia for his friend. The list goes on and on.
What does this say about the state of the world we live in. We live in a time of immense grief and evil, murderous and greedy men.
Talk about a great time to be alive.

Best Actress ain't looking so bad now. The spunky Queen, the pregnant teen, the bitter sibling, the drunken starling and the disney princess seem like a group I would be more comfortable in a room with.

And speaking of Meryl

Everyone's favourite, Meryl Streep and our new love, Amy Adams have signed on to star in Julie & Julia, a story about cooking based on the book based on a blog "Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen" by Julie Powell.

The story follows a woman who decides to cook all 524 recipes in legendary chef Julia Child's book "Mastering the Art of French Cooking". In, as the book title suggests, a small New York apartment kitchen.
In a year.

Streep is playing Julia Child so this should be another awards magnet. You know how they love actors to play real life people, and Meryl in this SHOULD be a hoot!

I for one am most excited to see these twwo talented ladies square off!

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Mini Review - Once

Well it was finally released over here, and I finally saw it. I remember back in April pointing out Thank you this little trailer that kind of captured my heart a little, and hoped the film would go onto bigger things.

It did.

“Once” is that rare film, one that completely moves you in unexpected ways. I will not go into the story as every review under the sun has covered it. What I will say is that story and music have not come together so fluidly in movie musicals for such a long time for me. Given that the performances were recorded live, no lip-synching here, enhance the raw emotion of the story of falling in and out of love, of hearts breaking and of them mending again.
The performances are all wonderful and most importantly, they are real. There is no big emotional ‘scene’, just real people reacting to real situations.

In a just world this film would find it’s place in the year end awards (it actually could) but I am just thankful it was made, and the soundtrack is available.
Just beautiful. A-

American Idol Meme

Thank you Polivamp!
It's fairly simple: You just pick a song to go with each 'theme' you are given.

Rules: Don't cheat the themes.
Post name of artist with song.
Tag people at the end.
Don't change themes either.

This is all obviously in the strange parallel universe where I actually can sing.

Top 24: Contestant Choice: I would open with "Gabriel" by Lamb. Hit them with something dramatic and unique.

Top 20: Dedication: “Live to Tell” by Madonna…one of my mums all time favourite songs.

Top 16: Contestant Choice: “Hands to Heaven” by Breathe, I know it is one of Simons favourites and it is pure DRAMA!!

Top 12: Motown: "You’ve Really Got a Hold of Me" by The Miracles, because it has a great vocal range and you can really get emotion across with this one.

Top 11: Country: "Gambler" by Kenny Rogers, I mean how can you not??

Top 10: Songs from the Year you were born: "Fame" by David Bowie, not only was it number 1 in the year I was born, but also the week.

Top 9: Songs from Musicals: "Bring Him Home" from Les Mis. If the singing falls through, I can always give one hell of a performance of this beautiful song to have acting to fall back on.

Top 8: Songs from the 90s: "Wonderwall" by Oasis. Need to get some rock in there, and everyone will sing along!

Top 7: Songs from the 80s: "I love to Hate You" by Erasure.. So vocally impressive.

Top 6: Love Songs: "Story Book Love" by Willy Deville, because it always makes me feel love. Plus it was in the Princess Bride so it has cool appeal.

Top 5: Songs from American Idol artists: Must I? "Since You’ve Beeen Gone" by Kelly Clarkson….it is the only one I can tolerate.

Top 4: Songs from the 70s: "Waterloo" by ABBA. Becaue I plan on coming out during the competition and what better song (“Dancing Queen” would be better, but “Waterloo” is fun!)

Top 3: Contestant Choice/Song You Think Would Be Picked For You: I would pick "Best Of You" by Foo Fighters as I think it would dramatic to perform it live. Simon would have me and be a twat by choosing “Unchained Melody”, which I would kill of course.

Top 2: Re-sing a Previous Song/You Coronation Song: “Yes” by McAlmont and Butler. It is a corker, would have a live band, and it is upbeat. Plus the vocals are so impressive. I would re-sing “Gabriel”

I am tagging as my competitors: Rural Juror, A Chimerical Plan, Jose and J.D. simply because I am interested in their selections.

Best Picture - So Not Clear!

This year the Best Picture race is cloudy to say the least. It is like a game of musical chairs. There are 5 chairs in a room and over 20 contenders, all showing signs of being able to make it.
Lets have a look at the films that have the best shot in each different Oscar friendly genre. (some of these cross over)

Drama (Modern Day)

We have “Michael Clayton”, “Into the Wild”, “Charlie Wilson’s War” , “Eastern Promises”, “In the Valley of Elah”, “No Country for Old Men”, “Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead”, “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”, “Gone Baby Gone” and “The Kite Runner”.

A lot I know. The films with the best chances are “Michael Clayton”, “Into the Wild”, “The Kite Runner”, “Charlie Wilson’s War”, and “No Country for Old Men”.

Eastern Promises did not get the RAVES needed to overcome the dark story. Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead” could still surprise, but most probably in the Director category. “In the Valley of Elah” just seems likeit has no traction right now, perhaps and Academy are a little embarrassed by that horrific “Crash” a few years ago and will stay away for Haggis this year. “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” is foreign so will most likely be rewarded in Foreign Film, but it is sentimental so a few other nominations could crop up.
“Gone Baby Gone” will not be rewarded for the big one. It is just too crowded for Ben Afflecks directorial debut.

Drama (Period)

Here we have “Atonement”, “There Will Be Blood”, “American Gangster”, “The Assassination of Jessie James” and “Lust, Caution”

The best chances go to “Atonement” and “There Will be Blood”. I do not see “American Gangster” being nominated. It may have great box office, but it needed great reviews to go along with it. I just see this as a movie people wanted to be brilliant so there is this sense that they will not let go of hope. LET GO!
“The Assassination of Jessie James” is getting LOVE/HATE reviews which, unfortunately means it will miss out on a big nom, and may be stuck with loads of technical noms. “Lust, Caution” is really out of the picture, it was met with a big ole “meh”.


Here we have “Juno”, “The Savages” and “Knocked Up”

“Knocked Up” is looking only at a screenplay nom. “Juno” and “The Savages” could make it in, depending on the critical love (which is already there for both) and box office results. Either of these have a strong chance at the lone Comedy slot.

Bio Pic

Well there is “American Gangster”, “Into the Wild”, “Charlie Wilson’s War”, and “I’m Not There”

Again, only “Into the Wild” and “Charlie Wilson’s War” are the only real contenders. “American Gangster” I have already spoken about, and “I’m Not There” will just been too quirky and too little seem to get Best Pic.


Well here we have “Sweeney Todd”, “Once”, and “Hairspray”

“Sweeney Todd” and “Once” have the best bets with the latter having big support from the likes of Spielberg! “Hairspray” was a light fun and box office hit, but will most likely only see a Golden Globe nom.


“Sweeney Todd” and “The Golden Compass” are the only threats, and depending on the reviews both could score. I give the edge to “Sweeney Todd” as the Academy may feel they have rewarded fantasy enough this decade.

So the main contenders are (not accounting for any surprises along the way like "The Great Debators":

“Sweeney Todd”
“Michael Clayton”
“Into the Wild”
“Charlie Wilson’s War”
“No Country for Old Men
“The Kite Runner”.
“The Savages”
“There Will Be Blood”

Still not clear at all….and that is so welcome!

Monday, 5 November 2007

Ugh...not another one.

Is there a horror film from the 70’s or 80’s that has yet to be made? Everything is getting the remake treatment(so far “Nightmare on Elm Street” is safe).
Is this a way to still make movies during the writers and actor strike looming? To remake horror films that will not need much work in the script department? Are Hollywood honcho’s running out and buying up copies of Screenplays for Dummies as we speak?

I just been announced that creepy killer doll movie “Child’s Play” is set to get the redo treatment.

Now as a premise this was scary sh*t. Dolls always scared the crapola out of me as a kid. I was terrified everytime the Teddy Rucksbin commercial came on telly. He was just plain evil.

The whole crazed killer gets trapped in the body of a toy is just plain silly. Why does it have to be explained? Could it just not be a doll that comes to life and terrorizes? To me that is much scarier, to leave some mysteries in life.

Sunday, 4 November 2007

I am, after all, me.

The results are here from my poll.

I asked who you felt deserved the Best Supporting Actress Oscar back in 1988.

The results were this time around were expected, but still I was a little surprised at the lack of competition in the voting. Looks like EVERYONE voted for her, and hardly anyone voted for any of the others which is always a shame.

Lets hope the next poll pics up a little steam!

Here come the results:

5) With 0% of the votes we have Geena Davis – “The Accidental Tourist” (our eventual winner)
Tied with
5) With 0% of the votes we have Frances McDormad -“Mississippi Burning”

3) With 10% of the votes we have Michelle Pfeiffer – “Dangerous Liasons”

2) With 17% of the votes we have the lovely Joan Cusack – “Working Girl”

1) With a whopping 82% we have Sigourney Weaver – “Working Girl”.

I knew everyone loves old Siggy, but not enough to give her three wins in my online polls. That was totally unexpected. Her performance in “Working Girl” was completely opposite of her role in that years “Gorillas in the Mist”, which is why it was as celebrated. It showed she had range.
She played a hungry, back stabbing corporate bitch with relish, and it is understandable why she won the Golden Globe.
Oscar did not agree, sadly they didn’t agree twice that year!

For my next poll we will be looking ahead in the Best Actress category, 1989.

The women you have to choose from are:

Isabelle Adjani - Camille Claudel
Pauline Collins - Shirley Valentine
Jessica Lange - Music Box
Michelle Pfeiffer - The Fabulous Baker Boys
Jessica Tandy - Driving Miss Daisy

Vote now!! Poll is in the side bar to the right, near the top.

I know who I'm voting for:

Where’s the support???

Best Supporting Actress is usually where the women get to shine. Lets face it, there are not that many really juicy lead parts out there for women, so it is the supporting category where we get some of the most interesting female acting work.

Apparently not this year. When doing my predictions for this category, I was stumped. There is only one lock, but I can still see that getting a slight backlash. They love Cate Blanchett, but this year seems a little gimmicky for her what with playing both a pantomime version of Queen Elizabeth the First as well as Bob Dylan. If I were an Academy voter I would be saying “Enough all ready…so you are versatile, who cares anymore.” But that is just me. (?)

In all likely hood she will be nominated, but who else. Who else has the buzz?
Firstly lets start with “Atonement” only because I have seen it. There are three possibilities for a nomination here. Soairse Ronan as the young Briony, Romola Garai as the middle one and Vanessa Redgrave (pictured) as the adult Briony. Any of us who have three siblings know that it is always the middle one who is forgotten, and the bookends who get the most attention.
Ronan seems the most likely, but far from a lock. Redgrave could easily slip in, and just as easily not. Hers is the smallest role, yet has the most emotional impact.

Then we have the Jennifers. Forget Connelly for “Reservation Road” that ain’t gonna happen. We are left with the over looked Jason Leigh for the critically mixed “Margot at the Wedding”. There are some great reviews behind her, but does the Academy really think she is overdue? Then there is Garner for “Juno”. Could this really happen? She apparently has a wonderful and heart breaking end scene, and never underestimate the power of a great Oscar clip, but the praise seems to be lavished entirely upon the films star.

Amy Ryan has gotten great notices for playing a white trash mother of a missing child in “Gone Baby Gone”, but white trash only impresses the Academy when the performer is well know for being glamorous to begin with. This could also be the same fate for Kelly MacDonald in “No Country for Old Men”. A male-centric movie where she is the only female of note, she could get noticed, or completely swallowed by the more ‘attention grabbing’ male performances. She is said to bring great warmth to the movie and nails her last crucial scene, but is it enough?

Perhaps there is room for another (besides Blanchett) huge movie star.
Nicole Kidman looks to play a cold calculating villain in “The Golden Compass” and she could be in if the performance is menacing enough, but she needs to over come the stigma of being in a genre film. I am not convinced of Julia’s hair, accent, or acting in the trailer for “Charlie Wilson’s War” (looking oddly like Lady Penelope, Joan Rivers and Amanda LePore combined) but she is a beloved star and her return could be welcomed.
The most likely would be Meryl Streep for “Lions for Lambs”. She is said to have the most interesting character and is very convincing with the ping pong reporters banter. The only question is how good is the film? Early reviews are mixed, but she is Meryl.

Then we have Marisa Tomei’s nakedness in “Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead”. She is meant to be intense and have loads of screen time, but the film is mainly focused on the men. Another film focused on men in “Michael Clayton” but it’s lone (large) female role is a corker and one that stays with you when you walk away. This could very likely see Tilda Swinton gain her first nomination and that is deserved.

And finally what of Leslie Mann (pictured) and her much heralded performance in “Knocked Up”? She has a very strong fan base that could see her pushed more and more into the lime light as the year goes on. This has happened on one or two occasions and there is nothing to say it cannot happen again. She just needs some critics support and she could be safely in.

But there are very few locks. Instead of having to make tough decisions on who not to nominate , I think the Academy members will be struggling to find performances they like enough. And this is what one needs to think about. Which five performances will Academy members like enough to nominate. This is the year of the dark serious film for the Best Picture race…perhaps a lighter Best Supporting Actress category?
If so we could see a combination of:

Cate Blanchett – “I’m Not There”
Saoirse Ronan – “Atonement”
Jennifer Garner – “Juno”
Kelly Macdonald – “No Country for Old Men”
Leslie Mann – “Knocked Up”

Then again is this category should reflect Best Picture in any way we could see an outcome like this:

Cate Blanchett – “I’m Not There”
Saoirse Ronan – “Atonement”
Kelly Macdonald – “No Country for Old Men”
Vanessa Redgrave – “Atonement”
Tilda Swinton – “Michael Clayton”

Either way only Blanchett is a sure thing(ish). Redgrave, Ronan, and Swinton are all deserving but long shots from being locks. My honest opinion would have to be that there are at least fifteen women vying for four spots, but I think the final five could look a little like this:

Cate Blanchett – “I’m Not There”
Saoirse Ronan – “Atonement”
Kelly Macdonald – “No Country for Old Men”
Jennifer Jason Leigh – “Margot at the Wedding”
Tilda Swinton – “Michael Clayton”

It would be a wonderful year to be able to debate which of the strong and wonderful performances should make it in and which should be left out. Unfortunately this year is not that year. We have to make do with what we are handed.