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 Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, unless otherwise noted. twitter | facebook | pinterest | tumblr | letterboxd

 

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Beauty vs. Beast

 

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 Beauty vs Beast 

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COMMENT DU JOUR
Supporting Actress: My Ballot & Yours

"Carrie Coon who in her screen debut steals Gone Girl from the much bigger names. Also can we just talk about how between Nora Durst and Margo Dunne that no one has as impressive a breakout in 2014 then Coon. " - Eion Daly

"Agata Kulesza blew my MIND in "Ida," so she easily gets my top ballot." - Lawson

"Keira Knightley. She just seemed like that rare person who can make you want to be better. So endearing, charming and she also has moments where she shows that she knows more about the world. A silent revolutionary." - MCV

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Entries in Ben Affleck (29)

Friday
Jan162015

David Fincher and Gillian Flynn Team Up for 'Strangers On a Train' Remake

Margaret here, recovering from yesterday's Oscars nominations and trying to process some upcoming movie news: David Fincher and Gillian Flynn are remaking Strangers On a Train. David Fincher and Gillian Flynn are remaking Strangers On a Train. 

 

 

There are so many feelings, and I am feeling ALL of them, all at once, right now. Help.
  1. Excitement: David Fincher and Gillian Flynn together again, and so soon!!
  2. Indifference: Ben Affleck is also involved, which, sure.
  3. Anger: A remake of Strangers On a Train? How dare they?? Hitchcock at his best is untouchable and the movie is perfect; no sane human could think it needs updating!
  4. Cautious Optimism: But. Buuuuut. If they're going to do to it, and you can't stop them.. The Flynn and Fincher team is such a great choice. Think of the cold, agonizing tension! Think of the pitch-black comedy! We deserve this.
  5. Confusion: But Strangers on a Train is perfect and I am mad?
  6. Curiosity: Although-- who could play Bruno, the most charming psychopath in movie history? That's going to be really tough to cast....
  7. Anger 2.0:....because, dangit, Robert Walker's performance is unimprovable and it's a fool who walks into that trap. Who's idea was this again?
  8. Begrudging interest: It's been reported that the remake will have a new context: instead of a tennis player and a psychopath who meet on a train and discuss the idea of swapping murders, this one (tentatively called "Strangers") will follow an actor (Affleck) campaigning for an Oscar who ends up on a flight with a wealthy stranger when his private plane breaks down. A fun, meta premise, no?
  9. Amusement: Affleck has been cast in the Farley Granger role which, if you think about it, is sort of a Nick Dunne 2.0; Ben may have found his perfect niche playing morally ambiguous murder-adjacent leading men. 
  10. Incredulity: Wait, when exactly will any of the people involved even have time to make this? Flynn and Fincher are already working on a series together for HBO, and Affleck has the whole Batman enterprise and several directing projects in development. It might be quite a while before we can see this.

How do you feel about this news-- more excited, or disappointed? Who would you cast as Bruno, the murderous charmer?

 

 

Monday
Dec152014

Beauty vs Beast: Miss Scarlett Decides

Fiddle-dee-dee y'all it's Jason from MNPP here with today's sweeping Southern epic edition of "Beauty vs Beast." Yes indeedy today is the 75th anniversary of the biggest movie that ever was and probably ever will be - David O. Selznick's Gone With the Wind (if any movie's ownership belongs to its producer, it's this one) premiered in Atlanta on this day in 1939. Three hundred thousand people lined the streets surrounding the Loews Grand Theater, the cap of three days worth of festivities which brought over a million people to the city. Most of the stars attended, save Leslie Howard who'd returned to England because of WWII, as well as Hattie McDaniel and the other black actors in the film who would've been segegrated from the rest of the cast thanks to Jim Crow. (A situation echoed several months later when McDaniel had to make her way from the back of the room to accept her Oscar.)

The film immediately smashed every record in sight - it sold just about half as many tickets as there were people in the United States, and adjusted for inflation its box office in today's dollars sits at something like three and a half billion dollars. It was a hit!

There were several character iterations I could've gone with for today's competition, but it seemed to me to face Viven Leigh's towering performance as Scarlett O'Hara off against anybody (Melanie, imagine!) would've flounced and trounced any ol' nobody in her way, so instead let's make like we're Scarlett herself and stricken with a crisis of suitors! A beau-tastrophe! Whomever shall we choose?

 

You've got seven days to vote, which should just give you about enough time to re-watch the first half of the movie up to the Intermission, so get to it.

PREVIOUSLY We took on 2014's blood-soaked war of the sexes with David Fincher's Gone Girl last week, pitting Ben Affleck's full-frontal assault as Nick in one corner opposite Rosamund Pike's icy cool girl Amazing Amy in the other - sure enough Amy kept her nickname tight in her calclating grasp, making off with over 70% of the vote. Said Mareko:

"Cool Girl is fun. Cool Girl is game. Cool Girl is hot. Cool Girl never gets angry at her man."

Wednesday
Dec102014

Interview: Introducing Carrie Coon, 2014's Most Exciting New Actress

Carrie Coon at the premiere of Gone Girl in NYCActors who can register potently in all three acting mediums are less common than you'd think. Some movie stars are duds on stage (and vice versa) and, though it's becoming less of an issue as mediums shift and even merge, you can sometimes spot noticeable scale shifts in charisma in the actors who jump back and forth between TV and film as if one is the place they were born to live in and the other a nice place to visit. The lines may be blurring as more and more actors make a habit of doing all three but some actors seem right everywhere. It's not the medium but the acting itself that's their true home.

Carrie Coon is not a superstar (yet) -- "I'm not famous," she insists as we settle into our conversation about her breakthrough year -- but whichever medium you first caught her in, chances are you've already fallen. In a shockingly swift and continuous series of firsts over the past year and a half she's logged her first Broadway show (Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Tony Nomination 2013) her first series regular TV (The Leftovers, expect nominations any second now) and her first film (Gone Girl, a huge hit, and inarguably one of the most talked about features of the year even if its awards season prospects are still hard to read).

Perhaps it's a case of mutual Midwestern ease but our hastily scheduled phone call feels not unlike meeting a very cool stranger a party who is completely chill and ready to TALK.

Our conversation on Gone Girl & The Leftovers is after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Dec082014

Beauty vs Beast: All The Cool Girls

Jason from MNPP here, saying tis the time for a round of "Beauty vs Beast" once more. This week we're finally tackling one of this year's biggest movies, David Fincher's Gone Girl - financially it's the biggest hit of its director's career, and critically, well a lot of people loved it and are hoping to see it figure prominently in the upcoming awards races. (I am not one of those people; I reviewed it at NYFF saying "a lot of what makes Amy into 'Amazing Amy,' what makes her particularly spectacular on the page, is the deeply darkly funny specificity of her voice, unpeeling like an onion, and that falls away from the movie just when I needed it most.") Anyway there's a good chance Rosamund Pike will be nominated for her performance as Amazing Amy, and it'll probably show up in some other categories as well. And if there's a bigger He Said She Said movie of 2014 I certainly missed it, so let's see who we side with!

 

I might have gone a little vague there in the Cons maybe...? The Pros were easy to be spoiler-free on, but listing these two's Cons without giving away too much of the game, that defeated me. If y'all have seen the movie you've certainly got your own laundry list of them, so tell us all about it in the comments.

PREVIOUSLY Last week we tackled the sisters of Blue Jasmine for Woody Allen's birthday, and even though Sally put up a helluva fight, as with the Oscars we couldn't help ourselves from lavishing our love on the showier gal. The Great Cate makes one more successful trek to the podium! Said Jakey:

"Jasmine, because when my life falls apart, I also wonder why I can't just get a Stoli with lemon."

Tuesday
Oct142014

Top 10 Things We Learned from the 52nd New York Film Festival

To close out our New York Film Festival coverage for the year, a quartet of takeaways from this annual highly curated celebration of international cinema. NYFF doesn't have a broad selection like a lot of festivals but there were goodies. I've asked each member of our team to send me a top ten list of things they learned (we did not consult each other on our lists).

I'll start

NATHANIEL'S TOP TEN NYFF TAKEAWAYS

1. 17 years after Boogie Nights, Julianne Moore is still 'the foxiest bitch in the world'

2. Birdman has a smorgasbord of quotable lines. My favorite on first viewing:

Popularity is just the slutty cousin of prestige."

3. Marion Cotillard is getting so mesmerizingly authentic onscreen pretty soon she's going to walk right off of it in character like she's reenacting The Purple Rose of Cairo. (I apologize for the image: no one wants to think of the Dardenne Brothers going 3-D.)

4. You should never ever sit in the middle of a row of a long-ass Mike Leigh movie if you are feeling sick. My half-apologies to my row mates who you have no right to take up aisle seats if you're uncomfortable moving for the people in the middle.

More including Whiplash, Birdman, Inherent Vice, and Channing Tatum's boots after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Oct102014

Linkman

Empire The London Film Festival has commenced with Benedict Cumberbatch opening the festivities
Kenneth in the (212) Harrison Ford in 1978 
Logolog This one is for the linguistics and trivia nerds: Last week's box office top ten featured the first ever "pangram" -- I didn't know what that was but the article explains it
Film School Rejects will "Vs" movies be the next franchise trend? God help us all 


Guardian claims that The Imitation Game might be the queerest film for the mainstream in ages. I don't want to do that math because, if so, how depressing because it's not all that queer
/Film a Labyrinth sequel in development?
Pajiba Jennifer Garner talks about Ben Affleck's penis on the Ellen show. Hold me. Why, Jennifer, why?
Esquire Gone Girl as the story of Ben Affleck's career. Undeniable connections!
Vulture theorizes on how all the seasons of American Horror Story could be connected. I guess they mean, besides the famous actors?
/Film First images of Margot Robbie and Will Smith in Focus. Hey, do you remember when there was a movie with that title with William H Macy and Laura Dern? Anyone?
Guardian So, you guys, it turns out that that Effie Gray movie starring Emma Thompson and Dakota Fanning does actually exist and its now playing in the UK 
HitFix Sean Durkin of Martha Marcy May Marlene fame will direct a film version of Little House on the Prairie. Bizarre. 

Casting News
The Playlist Léa Seydoux is your next femme fatale Bond girl. YAS! Great choice, 007 team
Variety Gabriel Luna joins Ellen Page in Freeheld
The Playlist Jennifer Jason Leigh takes the largest (only?) female role in Quentin Tarantino's Hateful Eight

Retweet
I take it you've heard about American Crime Story, a new Ryan Murphy series that will take on true uh... American crime stories.

 

 

True crime instead of the freaky supernatural fiction crime that American Horror Story traffics in, right? I had to have my say on Twitter, you know? Hee

Weekend Watch

 

James Franco's "Making a Scene" a comic mash-up series, fuses Beetlejuice and Batman together. What would Michael Keaton say? Probably "who cares" given his recent comments about the Batman franchise post him.

While we're on the topic of Batman, The LEGO Movie is going to have a solo Batman sequel in 2017. Exactly when do we approach maximum saturation of all things Batman? You'd think it would have been awhile ago. I worry for the the 2020s

Finally
For Towleroad, I wrote up a piece on films of LGBT interest in the big Foreign Film lineup with their trailers and such. Check it out. I'm dying to see Switzerland's The Circle. And I didn't realize until researching this piece that Concrete Night is made by a writer/director pair who are famous lesbians in Finland. How about that?

Stay tuned for more coverage on this category and of course all the others too, right here. Interviews and events are already starting off blog and soon we'll start sharing them. Let's consider Monday/Tuesday the official grand opening of this new awards season here at TFE.