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Entries in Adele (11)

Monday
Feb292016

...About Those Oscar Musical Numbers.

Dancin' Dan here to talk about what used to be my favorite part of the Oscar ceremony.

Remember those giganticoften-confounding production numbers set to the nominees for Best Original Song? They were crazy, ambitious, and compulsively watchable, bring levity to the alternately serious and teary acceptance speeches that usually dominate Oscar ceremonies. Even the times they just had a person stand there and sing, those moments seemed chosen because the songs were sung by a superstar who could easily fill the whole room with just their presence and incredible voice*. Unfortunately, those kinds of performances seem to have fallen out of vogue. Barring the odd actressexual dance party and Lego-fest, the days of crazy musical extravaganzas on the Oscars are long-gone. And I would argue the show as a whole is a less joyous, celebratory affair without them. For proof, look at this year's performances.

Set aside for now the fact that two of the best nominees didn't even get a performance slot, and let's take this year's performances on their merits. They were, for the most part, DULL.  Herewith, a few thoughts on each...

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Dec202015

Link Brunch

Now with unlimited mimosas

Towleroad a Russian distributor is planning some law-defying cinephilia -- they're going to release Carol despite Russia's absurdly homophobic "anti-propaganda" law 
Marvel 2016 is Captain America's 75th anniversary so they'll be the new film Captain America: Civil War as well as a 2 hour TV special "75 Heroic Years" to air on ABC on January 19th
Pajiba clears up what the word "spoiler" means since the internet is always confused about it
MNPP Save the date - new Michael Fassbender picture on Oct 13th, 2017
Comics Alliance forget what we said earlier about Nicole Kidman co-starring in Wonder Woman. Apparently they coudln't work out schedules. The'll presumably be looking for another iconic star in Kidman's age range for the Queen of the Amazons  

List-Mania
Associate Press and Rolling Stone have best albums lists for 2015. Adele's "25" and Madonna's "Rebel Heart" make both of the top 10s
i09 best comics and graphic novels of the year
Film Comment picks the 20 best undistributed films of the year. I haven't seen even one of them which is strange given multiple festivals this year
THR the Women Film Critics Circle goes all in for Suffragette with 7 (!!!) awards. This is a group I'd love to sing praises to except so often their ideas about gender seem reductive / surface level. I like Suffragette just fine but in no way does its topic (women's voting rights) make it a better film about women than say Carol or Brooklyn or even less high profile pictures like Grandma or I'll See You In My Dreams or Mustang you know? They also say super strange things like this:

The Invisible Woman Award (performance by a woman whose exceptional impact on the film dramatically, socially or historically, has been ignored): Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

How, exactly, has a performance with that much Oscar buzz from a new star the media is fawning all over having a wildly successful ubiquitous breakout year count as "invisible"?

a long time ago in a galaxy far far away...
Vogue a grown Star Wars fan remembers her adolescent obsession with the series and debates whether or not to go to the new film
Vanity Fair looks at the origins of Star Wars - an indie film no studio wanted to make
Movie City News the 5 things David Poland hated about Episode 7 (SPOILERIFFIC obviously). Agree completely on #1 (oy!) and sort of on #2 and #3. Don't understand #4 or especially #5 as I loved the Darth Vader obsession -- a great dark mirror to our own Star Wars fixations only embedded organically into the actual narrative.
The Incredible Suit 'froths at the cock' (sorry) for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Funny review  

Saturday
Nov142015

Links: Adele, Oscar, Regina, Rooney, JLaw and WTF Missy

Film Comment Nick Davis interviews Todd Haynes on movies that inspired something in his movies
Interview Mag talks to Regina King about her big year, an Emmy win and The Leftovers
Kenneth in the (212) looks back on the revolutionary TV movie An Early Frost (starring Aidan Quinn & Gena Rowlands) for its 30th anniversary
The Film Stage a prologue comic for The Hateful Eight written by Quentin Tarantino himself


The Envelope Jacob Tremblay on how Room should have ended 
filmmixtape suggests 10 films that should have made WGA's "Funniest" List
Pajiba mourns the passing of Hayley Atwell... from social media. She was a master at it. *sniffle*
This is Not Porn Marlon Brando on the set of Julius Caesar
Gurus of Gold new charts and which films and performance need a bigger campaign push to be a nomination threat
Screen Daily Adele in talks to join the cast of the next Xavier Dolan movie. Guess she liked her experience on 
"Hello"
/Film Rooney Mara still up for a Dragon Tattoo sequel
Variety the first image from the new season of Penny Dreadful - Patti Lupone returns 
Vogue gets a huge juicy house tour and talk with Jennifer Lawrence who is her typical bawdy self. On her current love life...

Cheers to my hymen growing back!” 

Music Video of the Year?
Missy Elliott hasn't released an album in 10 years. 10 YEARS. She proves she's still got it in spades with this track WTF (Where They From).It's got everything:  Hot dancing, inspired hair and makeup, best supporting visual fx, Charlie Kaufman like puppets, and boxes of people wrapped in plastic. I've watched this video a scary amount of times this week. Join me in obsessiveness. 

Oscar Movements
The Oscar charts were updated before yours truly headed to Los Angeles for the AFI, the last festival stop that can significantly change things (the next festivals like Santa Barbara for example are just glorified campaigning & warm up acceptance speeches for actors who are already real contenders). But, in a minor twist, AFI didn't change things - no Selma or American Sniper bows to be seen. There were a few players getting little boosts: Will Smith has an outside shot at Best Actor if they a) don't like their current options and b) Concussion is a big hit at Christmas; The Big Short could be a Globe Comedy contender (given that meager field); and quite a few Foreign Oscar Submissions attracted more devout fans since AFI is the single best festival at which to see them. Why you may ask? Well, it plays a lot of the titles each year and it's also the only big festival that takes place between when the official submission list is announced and when the Academy members start voting towards the finalist list of nine, so it's ideally positioned to make a difference. Mustang (France's submission) won the Audience Award but several other notable contenders, Denmark's A War among them, also had filmmakers and/or actors in town for promotional (hint: Oscar courting) purposes.

And in news that you know warmed Nathaniel's heart, The HFPA has vetoed Category Fraud attempts by Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander in supporting. They'll have to compete in Lead Actress, Drama where they both 100% belong.  This doesn't necessarily mean anything to the Oscar race where they've been pushed supporting thus far -- Oscar voters have never been required to vote in a specific way for a performance they like (unlike SAG & The Globes where the specific categories are decided for the voters before they nominate) and we've seen in the past that the media and (most shamefully) critics groups generally support / encourage Oscar to accept the fraudulent placement by the studios. But hopefully this is a bellwether for the future. Category Fraud has reached critical mass in the past dozen years and it's time to break it down.

Wednesday
Nov042015

Situation Linky

Arts.Mic Our Manuel dives deep on TV's family sitcom through history and how it does and doesn't reflect our changing world. Fun and depressing stats.
Dark Horizons BBC will try adapting Phillip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" into a franchise. Exciting since those books are so complex and adult (movies were probably never the right approach) but that said... good luck besting Nicole Kidman's Miss Coulter in the aborted movie franchise
Oscar Conversations [video] director, costume designer, and composer talk Beasts of No Nation
Africa is a Country Noah Tsikas with an alternative perspective on the much lauded Beasts of No Nation

Pajiba lists 20 upcoming sci-fi fantasy movies that are NOT from a franchise. How exciting. Original or fresh adaptations. Of course some of these will launch franchises if they're big
Guardian Colin Welland, Oscar winning screenwriter of Chariots of Fire has died. 
People Adele cites Madonna's "Frozen" as an inspirational song in her life. Same. That song rescued me at the time, no joke. (Love it when artists show Madonna respect rather than dissing her)
Little White Lies has a whole freaking issue on Carol ! Beautiful motion cover, too 
Los Angeles Times the ongoing drama of Quentin Tarantino vs the police
Boy Culture somehow I missed this Mommie Dearest night in Manhattan with actress Rutanya Alda (The Deer Hunter, Mommie Dearest) and Michael Musto 
Awards Daily talks to Tab Hunter about the documentary Tab Hunter: Confidential which is really fun if you're into Old Hollywood history
Playbill Here's a project with potential I hadn't heard a peep about: Shirley Maclaine and Amanda Seyfried will co-star in a movie about an old woman who wants to control everything including her own obituary. A young reporter has other ideas.
Variety Brad Pitt & Marion Cotillard (what a lovely pair) are headling Robert Zemeckis next feature and its got an Oscar hungry Thanksgiving 2016 release date 

Beauty Breaks
if you need it -- and who doesn't from time to time?
My New Plaid Pants Edgar Ramirez three times
NY Times amazing never before seen 80s photos of Madonna, Warhol, and Basquiat
Queerty on Empire's Jussie Smollet. Mmmm. Are any of you watching Season 2 of Empire? I don't like it quite as much this year but Jussie & Taraji & Gabby are still great fun
Vogue chooses best dressed: Meryl, Alicia, and someone named... Sienna Miller (sp?)
VJ Brendan Nicholas Hoult in Hero magazine. I saw this mag cover in London but if I'd known the photos were this good. It's a pretty pretty pretty pretty pretty pretty pretty pretty reminder that he was so great in Mad Max Fury Road earlier this year. FYC people.

WHAT A LOVELY DAY!

Friday
Oct232015

Adele + Dolan = "Hello"

New contributor Coco here, very happy to be joining the Film Experience team. Have you seen the latest Adele video?

Isn't it only logical that Adele's almost four-year hiatus was broken thanks to one of the most prolific auteurs of our times? It's unclear how much of a role Canadian wunderkind Xavier Dolan played in getting Adele to record her long-awaited third album, but he directs the video for first single "Hello". 

It's clear from this video that Adele is a huge fan of Dolan's Mommy, that she saw it, and that it was so trasnformative it inspired her to get up and finally record the follow-up to her megaselling and Grammy-winning album 21. That might be giving Dolan too much credit -we'll have to wait for the 25th anniversary oral history to find out the details- but the influence is there. Not only does it feature Dolan's trademark exhuberance, it also sounds a lot like the kind of song that would have been part of the Mommy soundtrack, especially with those "I'm sorry" chorus toward te end. 

What do you think? Was Adele totally inspired by Dolan? Do you think the song will win all the Grammys?

Thursday
Feb282013

Podcast: Oscar Night Season Wrap

For the final podcast of the season, Joe Reid, Katey Rich, Nick Davis, and me, your host, Nathaniel R let reader questions be our guide for this spontaneous Oscar Night Review.

Topics include but are not limited to:

  • Musical Performances: Adele, Shirley Bassey, Babs, Jennifer Hudson, and Catherine Zeta-Jones's Jazz
  • Future Nominations or Backlash for the winners: Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Lawrence or Anne Hathaway?
  • Ben Affleck's speech
  • Can Michael Haneke ever return?
  • What were the best reaction shots and when did we do our best reaction shots from home?
  • On Naomi Watts' career choices and Oscar's love of "it" girls
  • Documentary and Costume Design
  • Seth Macfarlane versus Jokes and Musical Theme
  • Emmanuelle Riva cutaways

You can download the podcast on iTunes or listen right here at the end of the post. 

All That (85th Oscars) Jazz
The Big NightFun ArrivalsWinner's ListJennifer Lawrence in the Press Room
The Look BackSeth's HostingFunniest Tweets, & This Podcast
The Fashions: Fifteen Men, The Ten Nominated Ladies, Goodbye Glamour

Oscar Night Season Finale

Thursday
Jan242013

Which musical performances will we see at the Oscars?

Though the Academy has officially announced that Adele will be singing "Skyfall" (her first time performing it live) on Hollywood's High Holy Night, we still don't technically know if there will be Best Original Song performances as there often used to be on Oscar night. The Academy had previously announced a 50th anniversary celebration of the James Bond franchise and it's probable that Adele's soulful warbling will be folded into that, whether or not the whole category is represented. We also don't know if she'll be singing before or after her Oscar win*.

There's also been rumors that some permutation of the Les Misérables cast will be performing live but unless they're doing a choral version of "Suddenly", that doesn't necessarily equate to Best Original Song performances either since a cast performance sounds more like a "One Day More" type situation.

But, if you ask me, they'd be crazy not to just have five Original Song performances this year since that'd give you the opportunity to have four superstars on stage at various points: Scarlett Johansson ("Before My Time"), Adele ("Skyfall"), Norah Jones ("Everyone Needs a Best Friend") and Hugh Jackman ("Suddenly") plus a gorgeous little outreach for a little world music ("Pi's Lullaby") on the side.

I know that people think the Best Original Song category is silly but if you look back through the history of the Oscars it has often provided great water-cooler moments or at least tuneful bathroom breaks. 

*the night's biggest lock?