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Entries in Andrew Garfield (25)

Thursday
Nov032016

Review: "Hacksaw Ridge"

by Chris Feil

Caught between championing pacifism and luxuriating in brutality, Hacksaw Ridge struggles to have it both ways. Telling the story of WWII medic Desmond T. Doss (Andrew Garfield), America’s first conscientious objector (a soldier refusing to bear arms) who rescued over seventy soldiers in a single night. What plays out is part old-fashioned star vehicle for Garfield and part survival epic.

The film is as bloodthirsty as Mel Gibson’s other directorial efforts despite Doss’s message at the center. There is more fascination in the multitude of ways military bodies can be destroyed than Doss’s moral stance against that very violence - Gibson’s gaze is never more invigorated than when someone is brutalized. While the third act could simply be presented as the grim reality of war, it is instead an aimless fetishizing of bloodshed. This won’t come as a surprise to the dissenters of Gibson’s filmography, but the habit is perhaps more glaring given it is directly at odds with the material. The taste level is questionable and the subject gets lost.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Sep212016

The Best Actor Competition... What is Going On Here? 

Only two men seem to have even remotely locked up their positions in the current Best Actor race and one of those only on reputation / material alone since no one has yet seen Denzel Washington's adaptation of Fences. So is it really Denzel for this third Oscar versus Casey Affleck for his first or is there more going on? There had better be since there are five nomination slots. Ten if you think of it in terms of Golden Globe excitement come year's end.

Since romantic male leads have historically had a tough time finding Oscar nominations from the male-heavy Academy body (romance is for girls. ewwwww, cooties) I know it looks weird to suggest that both Joel Edgerton and Ryan Gosling are looking likely but at this stage the field is what the field is. Gosling in particular, an actor whose work I've always deeply loved don't misunderstand, would seem like a clear miss. Think about it. He's headlining a musical which relies heavily on his effortless dreaminess, vibrant musicality, and physical grace. Not that those aren't award worthy attributes but Oscar is very gender-rigid about which adjectives are award worthy and if you say "dreamy, musical, and graceful" they'll think Best Actress. Which is why Emma Stone is much more locked up as a competitor at this stage, even though, musically speaking, she isn't as natural a dancer or musician. (Please note: Gosling also plays piano like a pro or can fake it better than pretty much any other actor I've ever seen.)

Edgerton & Gosling's chief competition looks like very young men (in terms of Oscar-voter tastes) in the form of Miles Teller (if his movie's a success), Dev Patel (if they don't do something fishy with the campaign), and Joe Alwyn (if he's tremendous in his debut and people love the movie). I know some are banking on Matthew McConaughey in Gold or Andrew Garfield in Silence (both sight unseen) but I'm suspicious in both cases. Just a hunch. 

That's where we'll find the gold.

The lack of heavy competition in this race means that Tom Hanks will finally be back after missing so recently for his arguably best work in Best Picture nominees. We can hope that the lack of excitement in this race (to date at least) will inspire more passion votes, too. If voters aren't feeling the leading men this year they could always look at off center giants like Viggo Mortensen in Captain Fantastic. I'd be shocked if there's five stronger leading male performances than his this year -- not that "deserves" got much to do with it. 

The New Best Actor Chart - Thoughts? 

Saturday
Jul302016

YNMS: Hacksaw Ridge

Murtada here. Brace yourselves, Mel Gibson might be trying a comeback. He appeared this past spring at Cannes with Blood Father, a violent revenge thriller that may be released later this year. And now a decade after Apocalypto (2006), we get the trailer for his next directing effort, Hacksaw Ridge. The film is based on the real life story of Desmond Doss, a conscientious objector medic who served in Battle of Okinawa, refusing to take a gun and going on to save many lives.

A Venice out of competition slot, a November release date in the heart of fall season, a respected albeit young leading man (Andrew Garfield) playing a real life hero from WW2. A lot of signs indicating that this might be a major 2016 release. Are we ready to start seeing magazine cover stories about Gibson’s redemption? Before all that, let’s examine the trailer after the jump......

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Apr142016

Andrew Garfield: free from Hollywood's web

For our impromptu and informal Actors Month, members of Team Experience were free to choose any actor they wanted to discuss. Here's David on Hollywood's outgoing Spider-Man.

Andrew Garfield wasn't made for Hollywood; an interview with Vulture last year saw him raging at the very convention of interviews themselves, tired of the constant insistence on self-analysis and invasion of privacy. He was, however, born in Los Angeles, with a father who dreamt of Hollywood - but the Garfield family moved back to his mother's English homeland when Andrew was just four years old. Now he is, by his own admission, firmly transatlantic, "equally at home in both places". He has fulfilled his father's latent dreams of movie stardom, but Garfield grew up on the British stage, an arena where character comes first and celebrity is a rare imposition. Many commentators have made note of how many British actors have taken on major roles in Hollywood franchises, but none seem so conflicted and contradictory about their place there as Garfield.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Oct012015

Welcome Back Andrew Garfield

Murtada is happy that Andrew Garfield is no longer a superhero. You?

Vince Vaughn and Garfield in the first picture from Hacksaw Ridge

Andrew Garfield recently started production on Mel Gibson's World War II drama Hacksaw Ridge in Australia. The movie is based on the life of Desmond T. Doss, the first conscientious objector to win the Congressional Medal of Honor after saving dozens of soldiers during the Battle of Okinawa.

Hacksaw Ridge will mark Andrew Garfield’s third post Spider-Man film. Coming in 2016 is Martin Scorsese’s Silence and he’s currently in cinemas with 99 Homes. From 28 to 31 years of age, Garfield was only the web-slinger. Some think he squandered the promise he showed in Boy A and The Social Network. Garfield himself was torn about what he had accomplished, saying in a recent interview:

I never felt like I was able to do enough. And I couldn’t rescue those films…even though I didn’t sleep. [laughs]. And I wanted to…not to say that I needed to rescue those films, but I couldn’t make them as deep and soulful and…life-giving as I could ever dream. And I’m never gonna be able to do that, with any film. It was especially difficult in that situation because…well, just because. And it was especially important because that character has always meant so much to me.

Garfield in 99 Homes

If 99 Homes is any indication there’s no reason to worry. Playing a construction worker who loses his home in the aftermath of the 2008 housing crisis, Garfield is effortlessly affecting as he deals with the shame and grief of losing everything and hitting rock bottom. While he is overshadowed by Michael Shannon’s blistering embodiment of “Americana”, the movie works because Garfield grounds it with a natural soulfulness that reminded this viewer of Mark Ruffalo at his best.

Garfield is obviously someone who feels a lot. Read that quote above again. Doesn’t the story of a heroic conscientious objector seem like a perfect fit? To prove the point about all the feels he feels, we’ll leave you with what he said about working with Emma Stone.

"Working with Emma was like diving into a thrilling, twisting river and never holding on to the sides. From the start. To the end. Spontaneous. In the moment. Present. Terrifying. Vital. The only way acting with someone should be."