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Entries in Bryan Cranston (12)

Thursday
Jul142016

Review: The Infiltrator

Manuel here with a review of The Infiltrator which opened yesterday nationwide.

Fact: Steven Soderbergh’s Traffic is one of the most influential films of the 21st century. That’s not a qualitative assessment but an increasingly common thought that’s rankled in my brain. Can you believe Soderbergh actually struggled to get his film financed because Hollywood execs didn’t think audiences would want to watch an entire film about the drug trade?

Fast-forward to summer 2016 when USA is premiering Queen of the South, Netflix will bring us season 2 of Narcos, two competing El Chapo TV series are in development, and Bryan Cranston’s The Infiltrator joins an ever-growing list of films about the war on drugs that range from the sublime (Sicario) to the pedestrian (Blow) with everything in between (Savages, anyone?).

In Brad Furman’s The Infiltrator, the Breaking Bad actor plays U.S. Customs Service special agent Robert Mazur who, as is par for the course in certain genres, decides to take on one last job to go undercover as “Bob Musella.”...

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Sunday
Mar062016

What's Next for this Past Season's Actors - Part 2

Murtada here to continue the conversation about upcoming projects from actors who've just walked red carpets and absorbed whatever limelight got past the Leo coronation. We've dealt with the winners and the actresses, let's turn our attention to the men.

Christian Bale: Coming up first is The Promise with Oscar Isaac and Charlotte Le Bon (The Walk), a love triangle set during the last days of the Ottoman Empire. He recently signed on to star in Scott Cooper’s Western drama Hostiles.

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Thursday
Feb112016

Best Actor: The Year of the Ham

As noted by the recently departed Alan Rickman on his BAFTA win for Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves "Subtlety isn't everything." As far as Oscar is concerned, this year Best Actor was go big or go home. Take a look the leading men outside the bubble and you'll find mostly nuanced performances like those from Michael B. Jordan, Tom Courtenay, and Tom Hanks with their scenery unchewed. Rewarding more broad work has made this the Year of the Ham.

Some of the bigger choices have been more welcome than others in this field, so let's have some fun assessing the hammage:

Bryan Cranston - Trumbo
Clearly the most guilty of going big for its own sake, Cranston's nomination leaves quite a sour taste in your mouth. The performance feels built upon arched shoulders and mustaches, even if Cranston is a game actor admirably going along with the film's schlocky tone. It's not just the scenery getting chewed, but the script, the costumes, the camera, and poor Diane Lane. It's so hammy, he even shows us his hams in a prison scene.
Level of Ham: SPAM - some people like it? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Matt Damon - The Martian
Here's a role that actually calls upon the actor to be a ham. Matt Damon gets to use more of his natural charm than he has in anything outside of the Ocean's franchise and spends much of his performance breaking the fourth wall. He leans in on the nerd humor that's heavy on puns and dirty words, but thankfully never goes full broski. Everything lands, including his unexpected emotional moments, but this a performance playing right to the crowd. The visible hams are an obvious emaciated stunt double.
Level of Ham: Honey-Baked - generally pleasing to everyone

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Friday
Jan152016

"Perhaps Margot Robbie in a Bubble Bath Could Explain This One To Me"

Now that we've had 24 hours to process the Oscar nominations I polled Team Experience for one last Oscar Nomination reaction roundup. Which nomination did each of our contributors find most mystifying? Here are their answers which amused me so I hope you feel the same. 

Please bear in mind that these items do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the management. We each have our pet peeves and our "achievements" we just can't with. Share your headscratchers with us in the comments. What's still antagonizing you this morning a full 24 hours after getting used to it as an "Academy Award Nominee" 

Individual targets after the jump...

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Tuesday
Dec222015

Batman v Running Time, Ex Machina v Blockbusters, and More

Can you believe Christmas is just 3 days away? Eeep how fast the month has gone. Let's jump right into news & links...

Women and Hollywood well, this is good timing. Charlotte Rampling is getting an eight film retrospective in NYC starting Wednesday... just in time to remind East Coast AMPAS members of her brilliance before balloting. Do NOT miss The Night Porter (1974) or Under the Sand (2000) if you haven't seen them.
THR looks at make or break moments coming in 2016 from Batman v Superman to MTV's Shannara Chronicles
Comics Alliance Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is apparently 151 minutes long. Yikes. Here's an idea: cut the death of little Bruce's parents because how many times we gotta see that origin story. The entire world knows it. No need for "previously ons" at this point.
The Wrap Dustin Lance Black and Gus Van Sant are working together again post-Milk. The new project is a miniseries When We Rise about the gay rights movement kicking off with the Stonewall riots

Variety Guy Ritchie's untitled King Arthur movie has been pushed back to 2017 
Variety Star Wars pay scales... back end bonuses don't kick in until the film grosses one billion dollars. Not that it won't pass that in record time (it's already over half a billion globally after that first weekend)
Slash Film modern movies getting the old VHS cover treatment
W Magazine the most provocative fashion photography of 2015. Miley Cyrus, Jessica Chastain, and Cate Blanchett among the subjects
W Magazine Bryan Cranston does a dramatic reading of Drake's "Hotline Bling"
AV Club charts the 24 times 2015 totally lost its shit. Outrage culture is exhausting! 

/Film Cuteness. You can sit in a BB-8 chair (row BB, seat 8 in the balcony) while watching movies in the El Capitan in Los Angeles through February 7th.
The Guardian on the Bechdel Test's origins and Star Wars. Good history feminist politics piece but for the very odd suggestion that gays aren't interested in seeing heterosexual romance onscreen. What the what now? History (and LGBT culture) does not remotely support this notion.
i09 on the devolution of the fan fiction trope "the Mary Sue" with the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens 
Gawker the complete history of Quentin Tarantino's use of the N word, used 65 times in The Hateful Eight which is second only to its use in Django Unchained  

Prize-Giving. Tis the Season
Playbill The Sydney Theater Award nominees for 2015 have been announced for fans of Aussie actors (i.e. everyone). Cate Blanchett and Hugo Weaving are among them
St Louis Film Critics chose Spotlight as Best Picture and Leo & Brie as best leading actors
Nevada Film Critics Society gave those exact same top 3 prizes but since The Revenant won four prizes it feels like the defacto winner

And Finally...
The Academy has announced the 10 finalists for Best Visual Effects, chosen from that longlist of 20 we shared earlier. The 5 Oscar nominees will come from these 10 pictures...

 

  • Ant-Man
  • Avengers: Age of Ultron
  • Ex-Machina
  • Jurassic World
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • The Revenant
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  • Tomorrowland
  • The Walk

 

The most surprising miss among the earlier semi-finalists is probably Spectre since James Bond films generally make the finals in the Daniel Craig era, don't they? But this category gets more competitive every year. I'm suddenly less confident about my current predictions (Avengers, Jurassic, Mad Max, Martian, Star Wars). Might Ex Machina, which hasn't left the awards conversation despite an April bow and is 1000% deserving of this particular nomination, actually make it despite not being of their preferred size and with the effects actually in a supporting role for a change? 

Wednesday
Aug192015

Lukewarm Off Presses: James Dean, Christopher Guest, Bryan Cranston

Three stories we're late mentioning but so what? Always eager to hear your thoughts...

Trumbo
Still no trailer but there's now a poster for Trumbo, the Hollywood blacklist drama starring Bryan Cranston and Helen Mirren (as gossip icon Hedda Hopper). Cranston could be looking at the Triple Crown if he's Best Actor nominated since he already has the Tony and the Emmy. Will Oscar go wild for this? A word of caution for those predicting at home: People were going on and on about how much Hollywood loves movies about itself when Birdman won the Oscar last season but it's not entirely true. They sometimes nominate movies about movies but they don't tend to be the big winners. And Hollywood blacklist dramas are an infrequent subcategory unto themselves: Career (1959) won a few tech nominations but nothing in the top categories;  The Way We Were (1973) only won for music and didn't even make the Best Picture lineup which it absolutely deserved to be in; Guilty by Suspicion (1991) with Robert De Niro and The Bening and The Majestic (2001) starring Jim Carrey were both entirely ignored;  Good Night and Good Luck (2005) was popular with voters for nominations but lost each of its categories. 

Mascots
It's been nine freaking years since Christopher Guest's last mockumentary For Your Consideration (2006) which was, unfortunately his weakest comedy. But he's finally making something new! The movie will be for Netflix and it's about what it sounds like it's about. No cast announced yet but I think we can safely guess at least a handful of players. I NEED to see Parker Posey and Catherine O'Hara in big furry costumes, okay? I need it like I need oxygen. 

<-- The "Life" of James Dean
Bring Your Own "Yes No Maybe So" in the comments. James Dean has had biopics before but this one comes from Anton Corbijn who I think we should allow made a very fine music biopic on Ian Curtis of Joy Division called Control (2007). This ground, however, is amply covered previously -- except for its macro focus on a photoshoot the moment before Dean was famous. The film, which looks depressingly actress free from the trailer, stars Robert Pattinson, Ben Kingsley, the ubiquitous Joel Edgerton and Dane DeHaan as James Dean.

Ready? Go...

Tuesday
Apr072015

Best Actor. April Foolish Predictions

It's that time of year. But judging on your semi-quiet response maybe you weren't quite ready for it yet? Anyway. Light a fire. Whoohoo. It's time to pull out the crystal balls and make stupidly early Oscar predictions.

There are so very many questions to ask about the forthcoming Best Actor race. These are just 8 of them:

• Can Eddie Redmayne (The Danish Girl) be the first back-to-back acting winner in 21 years?
• Will Tom Hiddleston (I Saw the Light) & Don Cheadle (Miles Ahead) do their musician legend biopics proud?
• Will Michael Fassbender prove Michael Fassbender's undoing (5 leading roles this year)?
• Same question for Jake Gyllenhaal (3 leading roles this year)?
• Perennial Write-In Question from Leo "when will it finally be my turn?" 
• Can money-grubbers Will Smith (Concussion) & Johnny Depp (Black Mass) find artistic redemption and thus Oscar favor?
• Can Bryan Cranston (Trumbo) triple-crown by February next year? He's already got the Tony & the Emmy 
• Will any of the old guard (Warren Beatty, Tom Courtenay, Sir Ian McKellen) rise up?
• Will Beasts of No Nation sort out its theater vs online situation so that Idris Elba has a shot?

SEE THE NEW CHART. Discuss.