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Entries in Beauty vs Beast (143)

Monday
Feb132017

Beauty vs Beast: Blessed Are The Forgetful

"Random thoughts for Valentine's day... Today is a holiday invented by greeting card companies to make people feel like crap."

Jason from MNPP here, wishing everybody a happy Valentines (even if I do lean towards the incredulous sentiment expressed above). When you ask yourselves what the great romantic films of our times are, what answers do you come up with? Because I asked myself that question in order to choose this week's holiday-themed edition of "Beauty vs Beast" and it was Michel Gondry's Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (from whence that quote came) that was the very first movie I thought of...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Feb062017

Beauty vs Beast: Direct to the Death

Jason from MNPP here - for this week's "Beauty vs Beast" we're celebrating what would have been the 85th birthday of one of the most important figures in cinema, the French critic turned director François Truffaut. What's your favorite Truffaut film? I know the "right" answer is The 400 Blows (or possibly Jules & Jim) (or maybe Day For Night) but I've always had a real soft spot for Mississippi Mermaid - Catherine Deneueve and Jean-Paul Belmondo all sweaty and sexy ? Sign me up.

But it's a different sexy pair I'm going to focus in on for this week's contest -- namely the director himself with his seminal book (recently turned documentary) Hitchcock / Truffaut, which linked him forever with the "Master of Suspense" himself. That's right - I found a way to make this series about Hitchcock again! Life finds a way, you guys.

PREVIOUSLY Last week Dario Argento's candy-colored hallucination Suspiria turned 40, and so we pit the film's protagonist, Suzy the dancing girl, against the conspiring witches running her dance academy, and just like in the film Suzy was able to pirouette to safety, taking just over 60% of your vote. Said Tom:

"I feel like the race should be a close one. But in light of recent events, I think many might feel urged to vote against an evil establishment with control issues. I'm voiting for Suzy."

Monday
Jan302017

Beauty vs Beast: Witchy Women

Jason from MNPP here, tackling one of my favoirte movies of all-time for this week's edition of "Beauty vs Beast" -- unless it's Halloween-time I mostly try to lean away from horror films for this series but I gotta make an exception this week, for Wednesday marks the 40th anniversary of Dario Argento's fairy-tale giallo Suspiria getting released in Italy. I love that the movie came out just in time for Valentine's Day - with its lurid reds (not to mention a character being stabbed directly in the heart) it feels tremulously appropriate for the season.

It's also a timely moment to celebrate the movie because as you might've heard A Bigger Splash and I Am Love director Luca Guadagnino is currently right this minute in the process of remaking the film, with a starry cast including Tilda Swinton and Dakota Johnson and Chloe Grace Moretz. Oh and Jessica Harper, the star of the original film, will appear as well! If only Joan Bennett & Alida Valli, the wickedly cruel mistresses of the dance academy, were still around for cameos...

PREVIOUSLY One week ago we were still holding out hope for the hopeless, aka a ton of surprise Oscar nominations for Yorgos Lanthimos' The Lobster. But we're happy it got that one nomination at least, and that we got to give love to its two key supporting men - and of the two Ben Whishaw kicked John C. Reilly square in the chin, taking 70% of your vote. And I gotta go with what Nathaniel had to say:

"Team John always. I admire the committment, injuring himself for love. or rather "love""

Monday
Jan232017

Beauty vs Beast: Colin Farrell's Best Friends Forever

Jason from MNPP here on the eve of Oscar nominations wishing you all a good night's rest tonight - I know how you'll all be tossing and turning with visions of little golden sugar-plum statues dancing in your heads. Until then let's use this week's "Beauty vs Beast" to tackle one of the greatest movies of 2016 which may or may not get a single nomination tomorrow but if you ask me it'd be up for La La level awardage - Yorgos Lanthimos' The Lobster. And I want to further tune in one two of its finest yet totally unsung turns, both of which I maintain are as fine as any in the conversation for Supporting Actor - Ben Whishaw as John the Limping Man, and John C Reilly as Robert the Lisping Man.

PREVIOUSLY Last week it was John Carpenter's birthday so we looked through our x-ray goggles at his 1988 anti-consumerist actioner They Live, and once again it was "Rowdy" Roddy Piper's chance to pound some alien butt. Said Steven:

"I'm here to kick ass and chew bubblegum and I'm all out of bubblegum. For the Hot Rod. Still miss that man."

Monday
Jan162017

Beauty vs Beast: Disobey

Jason from MNPP here. I probably wouldn't have thought about John Carpenter's 1988 goofy sci-fi classic They Live in relation to politics this year if the film hadn't been dragged kicking and screaming into the conversation by a bunch of Donald Trump's Nazi followers (in my best Carrie Bradshaw voice-over voice: "And so I wondered -- are the terms 'Nazi' and 'Donald Trump Follower' redundant?").

But now that the film has been dragged into the conversation a story about a bunch of elite monsters blinding the populace while they loot the Earth doesn't exactly sound like the world's most far-out science-fiction story these days. So with the Inauguration looming like an orange-haired mushroom cloud before us - and, on a less fatalistic note, with it being John Carpenter's 69th birthday today - let's assume our places.

PREVIOUSLY You guys gave me hope for humanity with last week's competition facing off the two Best Actress winners from the Globes - that's not meant as a knock on Emma Stone or her performance in La La Land but if a performance as sharp and unfriendly as Isabelle Huppert's in Elle can grab 70% of our vote, then maybe one day Yes We Can again. Said Evan:

"Let's not kid ourselves: Michele could gut Mia with that ax and then send a letter of condolence back to Mia's folks in Boulder City, all before "le petit dejeuner.""

Monday
Jan092017

Beauty vs Beast: Elle La La

Jason from MNPP here with this week's post-Globes edition of "Beauty vs Beast" - a big congratulations to all of last night's winners (yes even Aaron Johnson - I liked that movie; sue me) but especially to the actresses, because duh. This is The Film Experience.

So are Emma Stone and Isabelle Huppert the front-runners now for Best Actress now? I mean I don't want to jinx myself...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Dec192016

Beauty vs Beast: Happy Gotham Holidays

Hey everybody, Jason from MNPP here with our final edition of "Beauty vs Beast" for 2016 -- we will be back after the holidays... as long as the world still exists. (Lately I wonder.) Until then let's think happy thoughts (or die trying) and consider one of my favorite holiday movies, Tim Burton's Batman Returns. I was just reading a piece on the film this morning, placing its bleak worldview of politics against our own (I did say these were happy thoughts right?) so the movie's feeling fresh as a bowl of milk. And there's always room beside my Xmas tree for these two great villains - as The Penguin at one point says to Miss Kitty...

"You're Beauty and the Beast in one luscious Christmas gift pack."

PREVIOUSLY Since Star Wars is in the air last week we forced you all to take sides between the greatest bickering space pair since Dave disconnected HAL - beating Han Solo himself is no small feat (he shoots first, remember) so give it up to Princess Leia, who hair-rolled away with just under 60% of your vote. Said tom:

"She has one of the most famous wardrobes in movie history, an entire fleet at her disposal, and her sidekick is gold. His best friend is a walking carpet - her words. I think she wins."