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Entries in Beauty vs Beast (70)

Monday
Jun222015

Beauty vs Beast: Down & Out In Hollywood

Jason from MNPP here, and I'm ready for my close-up - we're devoting today's edition of "Beauty vs Beast" to the late great director Billy Wilder, who was born on this day 109 years ago. If you had to pick your favorite Wilder picture, what would you go with? It's a query that'll break the brain of many a cinephile, so rich stands his cinematic legacy even all these decades later. I personally am torn between The Apartment (so glad I was able to hang out in the bar that Fran and C.C. frequent before it closed) and today's competitive centerpiece, 1950's Sunset Boulevard (aka still the greatest movie about Hollywood ever made), but cases made for a couple other Wilder films could probably convince me they were his be all everything too. Point being Billy didn't used to be big, he is big, and it's the pictures that got small without him. In that vein...

PREVIOUSLY Last week we wished Helen Hunt a happy birthday with a look back at her and Jack Nicholson's 1997 Oscar wins for As Good As It Gets -- facing them off y'all were decidely Team Carol with her thundering past a full 3/4ths of the vote. Explained Denny:

"Loved this film then and like it now, despite all the shit it gets. Jack is on fire - somehow Melvin doesn't come off like the complete and utter cliche he is on paper, and it's solely due to Nicholson's unique charisma - but it really is all about Helen Hunt and her warm, deeply lived-in performance as Carol. Yes the "fucking HMO pieces of shit" bit is great, but where the character (and the actress) really sings for me is in the quieter, more intimate moments. She somehow ups everyone's game when she's in a scene with them, and that's no small feat. But really, Carol wins just for being able to handle Melvin and all his bullshit."

Monday
Jun152015

Beauty vs Beast: Sidewalk Stories

Jason from MNPP here with this week's "Beauty vs Beast" -- the very first movie that I ever saw being filmed in person was on one of my first trips to New York City; I guess it must've been in the spring of 1997? There I was walking down a side-street near NYU, a wide-eyed country bumpkin in the big city, when who should suddenly be standing in front of me but Jack Nicholson. Jack Nicholson! That'll stop you dead in your tracks. Beside him was Helen Hunt and Greg Kinnear and you guessed it, it was James L. Brooks' multiple Oscar winner As Good As It Gets.

I watched them film for about half an hour (it was the scene where they were getting into the car to go on their mid-movie road-trip) in awe, and now whenever I think of this movie I think of that experience and how fundamental it was to cementing this city as where I wanted to live my life. There's magic around every corner, wedged terrifyingly in every crack of the sidewalk. Long story short today is Helen Hunt's birthday (and Greg Kinnear's birthday is on Wednesday) so As Good As It Gets it is...

PREVIOUSLY Last time around we anticipated the weekend's great big movie (movie-a-saurus) with a claw-off between the Tyrannosaurus Rex and the Velociraptor in Steven Spielberg's 1993 original Jurassic Park - ya'll love your Clever Girls and the Raptor slashed her way to the winning circle with 60% of the vote. Said forever1267:

"Velociraptors are one of the few movie monsters that really scared me while watching the movie. They aren't supposed to be smart! They're not supposed to be able to open doors! They're not supposed to be clever! Chills!"

Monday
Jun082015

Beauty vs Beast: When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth

Jason from MNPP here with this week's "Beauty vs Beast" -- actually it's more of a "Beast vs Beast" this time around, as we're finally tackling the movie franchise sixty-five million and twenty-two years in the making and as much as I love all of the Ellie Sattlers and Ian Malcolms let's not fool ourselves - we go to Jurassic Park movies to see the dinosaurs of our childhood dreams be brought to (terrifying, realistic) life. Jurassic World is out on Friday and as much hyped in the trailers they're giving us a new dinosaur, the Indominus Rex. It's a genetic hybrid, spliced together from blah and blah and didn't they learn anything from the Spinosaurus fizzle in Part III? We know they need new toys to produce but we just want the classics. The originals are, as always, the best. But which is King of the Park?

 

Before anybody nerds out on me I know that scientists now believe the T-Rex's "movement-based vision" thing is no longer the case but hey, it's what the movie believes, so it's true for this T-Rex. You've got a week to vote! And please, no write-in's for Chris Pratt. Doesn't he have enough already?

Monday
Jun012015

Beauty vs Beast: Mars Girls Are Easy

Jason from MNPP here with this week's "Beauty vs Beast" -- today is the 25th anniversary of one of our most favorite trash spectacles, Paul Verhoeven's Total Recall! The film was dropped on a unsuspecting public on June 1st, 1990, probably expecting the usual Arnold Schwarzenegger shoot-em-up... you know, "usual" meaning without any little people with crimped hair shooting machine guns. Little did they know! Well maybe if they'd seen Verhoeven's previous Amrican effort, the similarly bonkers Robocop, they had a clue. Still the movie was a great big hit, as to be expected in 1990 with Arnold's big face on the poster, even if it's still incredibly strange in that incredible Verhoeven way.

Back in 2009 I listed five of my favorite side characters from this movie over at my own site - I've seen this movie more times than I could count, so every twisted-up face is like an old friend - and I figured it'd be more fun to dive a little deeper than just Arnie vs Ironside or Sharon Stone vs that dark-haired lady that isn't Sharon Stone for today's competition. So on one side we have Mary... who the hell is Mary, you ask? She's probably better known as "The Three-Breasted Hooker." Ahh now you know who I mean. (As an aside here's a dishy necessarily-NSFW interview with the actress Lycia Naff who played the role.) And on the other, the rebel leader Kuato, played (and voiced) by Marshall Bell and a gooey gut-puppet. Freeeee Marrrrrsssssss...

I know what a hard decision this is, so you've got one whole week to choose.

No, not two weeks. One week. ONE week!

Monday
May182015

Beauty vs Beast: Wicca Wicca What

By the power of three, Jason from MNPP here today to make you see, make you see. If you can believe it Andrew Fleming's 1996 teen witch classic The Craft turned 19 years old two weeks ago, and it celebrated the last year of its teens with the news that greets so many other movies of a certain age -- it's remake time! Leigh Janiak, the female director behind last year's sufficiently creepy film Honeymoon, is gonna find four new girls to make light as a feather, stiff as a board, for a whole new generation. For a subset of 90s kids, this is like blaspheming the great Manon himself - inconceivable! Star Fairuza Balk (who's celebrating her birthday later this week - happy birthday, Fairuza!) weighed in with wise words on it; we have yet to hear from "natural witch" Robin Tunney. But what do you guys think? (Also: WHO WOULD YOU CAST?) And most importantly...

Whose team are you on?
Team Sarah0%
Team Nancy0%

PREVIOUSLY Last week's Kramer vs Kramer poll stayed incredibly close the entire seven days, and in the end it was only seven votes that handed Joanna (Meryl Streep) the win. Obviously y'all were as torn up over choosing as was that little boy's home life. Said Mike:

"I can't even say enough about these two marvelous performances. Both Oscars were well deserved. Still one of my ultimate favorite performances given by Meryl."

Monday
May112015

Beauty vs Beast: Daddy vs Mommy

Jason from MNPP hoping your hangover from partying hard into the wee hours of Mother's Day is not too harsh. I know how it goes - when your Mom demands more shots, ya gotta do more shots. And speaking of Motherhood! As Nathaniel just told you last week this month's Supporting Actress Smackdown belongs to the year 1979, and when they get to that on May 31st a really big piece of that puzzle will be Meryl Streep's performance in Kramer vs Kramer, which brought her her first Oscar. Kramer vs Kramer... Beauty vs Beast... it's a natural fit! Consider this an appetizer to the Smackdown main course...

Whose team are you on?

PREVIOUSLY  Last week we also took on the breaking of familial bonds, albeit in a galaxy a bit further away than our own, when we pitted Luke Skywalker against his helmeted Papa Darth. Well you're all a bunch of evil Empire lovers becauve Vader strutted off (imagine John Williams' marching music here) with just under 70% of the vote Said Steven:

"The Dark Side is strong with this one."