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Entries in Cate Blanchett (117)

Wednesday
May252016

Lukewarm Off the Presses: Beyond Ragnarok & Huppert Fever

Reheating some news we never got around to! But perhaps it's news to you...

Cate Blanchett will be playing Thor's next big bad "Hela". We assume she's the antlered one in this concept art so we cautiously look forward to that costume. But confession: I don't trust Blanchett in villainous mode (*dodges tomatoes*) since she overdid it in both Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Hanna and nearly so in Cinderella and I don't mean overdid it in a fun comic-book kind of way but just too much overall. Plus the Thor movies are easily the worst part of Marvel Studio's work to date. Other new players in Thor: Ragnarok will be Jeff Goldblum, Karl Urban, and Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie (a character I loved as a kid so yay, Tessa). And of course Mark Ruffalo as the not jolly green giant and Chris Hemsworth as the guy with the hammer. For some reason they are forcing Sir Anthony Hopkins' Odin back on us (I thought he died in the ssecond movie?) and Tom Hiddleston is back under Loki's horns which is a pity because he deserves to use his time on other things, now, come on. They've wrung that character dry, they've leaned on him so much. 

Apparently the villain in Star Trek Beyond looks like this. It's actually Idris Elba underneath all that makeup. LOUD SIGH. First Oscar Isaac gets buried in ugly latex for Apocalypse and now Idris? Idris Elba is, and I think the internet will back me up on this assertion, one of the most attractive people on the planet. So why won't Hollywood show us his face? It is really pissing me off. This year he's onscreen as a tiger (Jungle Book) a buffalo (Zootopia), a sea lion (Finding Dory), and this alien but not as a human man you can actually look at. As a pasty white boy I am fully aware that there are people who think I shouldn't talk about race... but as a human person stuff like this is really getting to me. I am not one to jump on every perceived racial slight and proclaim racism (As I said much to the internet's displeasure this past season, I think #OscarsSoWhite was oft-misguided because the actor's branch is not the correct target for such things given both Hollywood and Oscar history) but I can't look at Idris Elba's career, and Zoe Saldana's career (note how she's always blue or green in her movies... until she was a black woman doing blackface -yikes!) and Lupita Nyong'o's career post Oscar (a CGI alien and a CGI wolf so far, but not an actress you can gaze at despite her considerable beauty) and not KNOW that Hollywood's race problem is dire and also, I'd wager, subconcious.

This is not complicated, really, if casting directors, directors, agents, executives, managers, and maybe even the actors on occasion would just think decisions through a little more, especially in regards to the optics. FACT: People like to look at beautiful actors. They always have. Stop hiding them from us! 

Isabelle Huppert is having a good year. I missed a lot of articles on Elle and Isabelle Huppert's time in front of the press at Cannes. In a new interview at the Guardian about Elle and her latest stage performance in Phaedra there's a lot of fascinating tidbits including her repetitive unwillingness to talk about other famous actors but her chatterbox response to questions about directors. She also wants to do more comedies...

Viewers do tend to think of her on-screen persona as a full-on neurotic, steeped in psychosexual anguish.

“Yes, but you can be a comic neurotic too.” So does she feel underrated doing comedy? “I certainly do feel…” she hesitates a moment; I take that as a yes. “That’s why I’d love to work with Woody Allen or Noah Baumbach – to do comedy in that New York vein.” But her serious roles, she insists, often contain more humour than is apparent. “Even The Piano Teacher – although I wouldn’t try to persuade anyone that was an out and out comedy…”

Whew. I was worried for a second. That film is not a knee slapper. As for Huppert in comedy. Can you handle that? I liked her in I Heart Huckabees and especially in 8 Women but in both she was working with or riffing on that dramatic neurotic performance so her comedy was stemming from perceptions of her as an actor, just as much if not more than her actual performances.

 

Saturday
May142016

Happy Birthday Cate Blanchett

Murtada here to celebrate Cate Blanchett's birthday and the Cannes Film Festival simultaneously!

Cannes is all about tradition and protocol. Who walks the red carpet and how they do it, is a big part of its tradition. Only the film cast and crew walk together as their photos are taken. Turn left, turn right, hand in hand until they reach the steps. There they are allowed to walk up separately and that's when the magic happened last year at the Carol premiere with Cate Blanchett proving what a great movie star she is.

Multiple Cannes moments with Cate after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Mar222016

Tues Top Ten: Best Performance of the Decade (Thus Far)?

Today's top ten was inspired by Robert MacFarlane who asked what the greatest performance of the decade was on twitter to a quick flurry of responses involving some usual suspects: Phoenix, Hoffman, Cotillard, Blanchett and some unusual suspects: O'Connell, Culkin, Pitt. But the question naturally lingered because who doesn't love ranking such unrankables?

Let's do this!

BEST PERFORMANCES OF THE DECADE (THUS FAR)
Ranking likely to change tomorrow. Oscar nominated roles marked with asterisk. Oscar winning roles with double asterisk 

Honorable Mentions (No Particular Order): Binoche in Certified Copy, * Keaton & Norton in Birdman, * Riva in Amour, ** Day-Lewis in Lincoln, ** Bale in The Fighter, * Rampling in 45 Years, and many others...

10 James Franco, Spring Breakers (2013) --look at his shittttttttt
09 * Marion Cotillard, Two Days One Night (2014) --transcendent
08 * Cate Blanchett, Carol (2015) --daringly stylized, mesmerizing
07 * Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom (2010) --she did a great thing, sweetie
06 Charlize Theron, Young Adult (2011) --the layers. the layers
05 * Viola Davis, The Help (2011) --smart. kind. important. (and other wonderful adjectives)
04 Matthew McConaughey, Magic Mike (2012) --lawbreaker in the house
03 Nicole Kidman, The Paperboy (2012) --Bless Charlotte Bless
02 ** Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine (2013) --from airplane to park bench, perfection
01 Ralph Fiennes, The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)


What are yours? 

Saturday
Mar052016

Knight of Cups Top 5

Manuel here with a short list about Terrence Malick’s most recent outing. Knight of Cups will sit alongside Tree of Life and To the Wonder in what we might call the director’s spiritual trilogy and however you felt about those last two outings will color how you see his latest. Since the film is a roving set of overlapping and interlocking duets—we follow Christian Bale’s Rick, a successful Hollywood writer through Los Angeles and Las Vegas as he has dalliances with beautiful women and deals with the demons that afflict all troubled artists—I figured I’d pick out 5 pairs of Malick collaborators that truly shine in this dreamy poem of a film.

Consider it our version of praising the parts while remaining underwhelmed (or just ill-equipped) to praise the sum...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Mar052016

What's Next for the Women of "Carol" (and other lesser beings)?

Murtada here. Now that the Oscars are behind us (and our coverage concluded) our eyes turn to the future. Josh told you about new projects for four winners. But what of the "Best" losers? Let's start with the magnificent Carol ladies and move on to other actresses to see where they're headed next.

10+ future prospects after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Mar012016

Tuesday Top Ten: Oscar Fashion 

Jose here, reporting for red carpet duty, and wishing I was half as cool as perennial nominee Sandy Powell (pictured left).

Full disclosure: I did not watch the Oscars on Sunday. I know, I know (I will be banished from TFE soon or burned at the stake later this week and you know what my last words will be) --  so all my red carpet knowledge is coming from pictures. If there was a fabulous dress that made an appearance during the ceremony I missed it, but expect you all to fill me in in the comments. Perhaps it was my general boredom with this particular awards season, or people taking less fashion risks than usual, but it was a lackluster affair when it came to most red carpets, and the Oscars were no different. Seriously, off the top of your head, can you come up with three or five iconic looks that people will be talking about for years to come, from this season? 

Without further ado, the ten best looks on Oscar night...


 

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Feb272016

Live Blog : Independent Spirit Awards

Welcome to the Independent Spirit Awards Live Blog!  Your usual host Nathaniel is otherwise occupied. I’m Murtada hoping to take you through the next couple of hours in good spirits and minimal puns.

Refresh periodically for updates!

The show hosts today are Saturday Night Live star Kate McKinnon and  Silicon Valley’s Kumail Nanjiani. They gave a fun interview to Vanity Fair where they both admitted to being obsessed with awards shows growing up. Do you think they read The Film Experience?

McKinnon:

 "I have this notebook. I’m about 12 and I’ve got a notebook, and I watch all these shows and write down the winners in all of the categories. In every category at all the Oscars, the Globes, the Emmys. . . . Because I was really so interested in the entertainment industry.”

 Nanijani:

"I loved the Oscars and I had V.H.S. tapes for the Oscars, and I used to watch them over and over. There was probably one year where I watched it like 20 times or something.”

 

Read it when the commercials are on; it’s fun.

The nominations were led by Carol (6) and Beasts of No Nation (5). But if the last few years are any indication then Spolight, which scored 4 nominations, is the favorite since it's the only Oscar best picture nominee in the running. They really love the Oscars at Indie Spirits. 

However this year there are several categories that have 0 correlation with Oscar. So we are in for an unpredictable show. Hopefully.

Live commentary after the jump:

Click to read more ...