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Entries in Cate Blanchett (73)

Sunday
May172015

Cannes Review: Carol

Our friend Diana Drumm is in Cannes and will be sending a few reviews our way. First up, Todd Haynes hotly anticipated Carol... (note: this review contains a couple of spoilers for those who haven't read the book)

Within a year of publication, Patricia Highsmith’s first novel “Strangers on a Train” became a seminal Hitchcock thriller. After half a century, her second novel “The Price of Salt” (published under the pseudonym of Claire Morgan) is now a Todd Haynes romantic drama (under the succinct title Carol). Whereas the former concerns two male strangers duplicitous in murder, the latter is about two women finding love in constrictive 1952 New York City. Turning the pulp novel into a palpable parable, Carol is a master stroke in Haynes’s 21st century oeuvre (Far from Heaven, Mildred Pierce, et al.), and harkens back to the pressurized strength of Safe and the sexual fluidity of Velvet Goldmine - both capturing and throwing off the starched restrictiveness of postwar America, and deftly upgrading the melodrama with social relevance.

Inspired by Highsmith’s own stint at Macy’s (and her affair with Philadelphia socialite Virginia Kent Catherwood), 20-something shopgirl Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara) waits on and is struck by elegant “blondish woman in a fur coat” Carol Aird (Cate Blanchett). A friendship builds between the two, to the jealousy of Therese’s huffy square boyfriend (Jake Lacy), who dismisses it as schoolgirl crush, and the consternation of Carol’s matinee-handsome, soon-to-be ex-husband (Kyle Chandler), who uses it as ammunition in their ongoing divorce negotiations. [More]

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Monday
May042015

The New Best Actress Field. Who Will Be Nominated?

We saved the best for last. The complete April Foolish Oscar Predictions are up with the Best Actress chart finally complete. As is usual for this beleagured actress psychic, once I've thrown the first charts up in all categories I immediately feel a tidal wave of "no, no, that's all wrong!" though the years have proven me relatively adept at first wave guesswork. At least comparatively speaking.

Which next generation Oscar darling will rise?

After fixing up a chart that included 3 older women who happen to be 3 of the 4 most recent winners (Julianne Moore, Cate Blanchett, and Meryl Streep) I immediately realized that this surely could not come to pass and regretted hitting publish. But you have to get the first wave predictions up eventually, so published it stayed. And a truth: everyone is going to be wrong this year because it looks highly competitive with multiple promising leading roles for women.

THE WORLD IS ROUND, PEOPLE.

Recognizing the over 40s in Best Actress has never been AMPAS's strong suit so surely the tide will turn sharply this year or next after so many older winners and even a year with the oldest lineup of all time in terms of nominees in this category (2013). Perhaps this year's lineup will include none of those darlings and skew very young: Saoirse Ronan, Carey Mulligan, Ellen Page, Alicia Vikander (with 8 movies opening something is going to stick), and Jennifer Lawrence (again)... though I personally hold out hope that Lily Tomlin's bravura turn in Grandma can win some "career tribute" style press and make a play for her second nomination 40 years after her first for Nashville.

Or maybe they'll finally make room for my riskiest hunch, Emily Blunt and give her her first nomination at 32 years of age for playing a young FBI agent up against a swarm of dangerous men. Shades of Jodie Foster in Silence of the Lambs anyone?

Please do check out the chart and let's get busy discussing! 

Rooney: Do you think we'll be nominated again, Cate?

PREVIOUS DISCUSSIONS
Animated Films | Actor | Supporting Actress | Screenplays | Supporting Actor | Best Picture | Best Visuals  | Sound & FX

RELATED
Index of All Predictions, Oscar Dates for Your Calendar, Most Awaited Films of the Year, and all Oscar adjacent articles for 2015

Thursday
Apr162015

Details on the Cannes Lineup

The Cannes Competition Lineup (and more) was announced in the wee wee hours of the morning -- not so wee for France mind you -- and here's what we're looking at. A lot of French and Asian films, a few foreign giants doing their first English language films and at least three directors we haven't had a film from in 7 or 8 years.

International beauties we can safely expect to see walking that Cannes red carpet include but are not limited to: Cate Blanchett, Qi Shu, Marion Cotillard, Diane Kruger, Emily Blunt, Natalie Portman, Catherine Deneuve, and Maîwenn. ANNOUCEMENT: Friend of TFE Diana Drumm will be reporting for us a bit from the festival like last year. If we've written about any of these films before, the links will take you there. Included after the jump are descriptive bits of each film that we know anything about.

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Friday
Mar202015

We Can't Wait #1: Carol

Team Experience is counting down our 15 most anticipated. Here's Matthew Eng with our #1 choice, which incidentally also topped this list last year when we used wishful thinking to pretend it would be done early...

Who & What: Living genius Todd Haynes directs playwright and Mrs. Harris scribe Phyllis Nagy’s adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s gently subversive lesbian novella (originally published under the much grittier-named The Price of Salt) about a sensitive shopgirl (Rooney Mara) who falls in love with the lonely society dame of the title (Cate Blanchett) in lush 1950s New York. 

Why We’re Excited About it: The cinematic “comeback” of Haynes, returning to the big screen a full eight years after I’m Not There (despite a six-hour pit stop at HBO for Kate Winslet’s Mildred Pierce), is obviously incentive enough. But he’s also compiled a cast so charismatic, it basically makes you salivate: Mara and Blanchett, of course, but how about Ace Team Player and Perpetual Dreamboat Kyle Chandler as Blanchett’s snooping husband?

Lots more and several photos after the jump...

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Sunday
Mar152015

Review: The New "Cinderella" Is a Real Beauty

This review was originally published in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad.

The Game of Thrones Stark family was fond of the imminent warning "Winter is Coming" but their King of North, actor Richard Madden, doesn't need to worry this time. He's due a much happier Royal ending as the latest charming Prince to hit the movie screens. Winter is most definitely never coming to Kenneth Branagh's luxe adaptation of the most beloved of fairy tales, Cinderella. From its opening vista of a well-to-do country estate, filled with warm yellows and verdant greens and one very happy family, a pleasant merchant and his sunny wife (Ben Chaplin & Hayley Atwell) and their kind daughter Ella (Downton Abbey's Lily James), this Cinderella screams springtime and summer.

Its timing couldn't be better after this particularly long winter.

Spoilers if you're freshly arrived from another universe: Ella's loving parents are not long for this world and after imparting their wisdom and reinforcing her enchanted goodness (yes, she talks to animals), they take turns dying. Lady Tremaine, the stepmother, is introduced inbetween those deaths in clever multi-tasking voiceover courtesy of Fairy Godmother Helena Bonham Carter. [More...]

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Saturday
Feb282015

The New Oscar Actress Hierarchy - 33 Most Beloved Women

This is your daily reminder that Julianne Moore is now an Oscar winner!

 I thought it might be fun to revise the Oscar Acting Hierarchy which I did once very long ago, I believe in connection with the rapid rise of Kate Winslet through the ranks. 

What follows is a List of 33 34 All Time Favorite Actresses of Oscar... restricted to women with 5 or more nominations. Only the acting statistics are accounted for so Emma Thompson, for example, is not ranked. If you included her screenplay win or had she been nominated for Saving Mr Banks last year than she would have been on the list. If you counted non-acting nominations, you'd also see Shirley Maclaine jump a rank as she was nominated for documentary once. Now that virtually every major star is a producer these types of extra nominations stats are going to get progressively murkier in Oscar lists of the future so we're opting not to include them. 

How the ranks were determined. Number of nominations determines general placement. Once that's established wins are most important. In the event that someone has the same exact stats in nominations and wins, the tiebreaker factor in rank is that lead counts more than supporting. If the tie stubbornly remains the tie is broken by endurance (thus Vanessa Redgrave beats Kate Winslet though they have the exact same stats because her nominations are spread across 26 years instead of 13). Further mitigating factors: Three statues is so uncommon that it gives the actress a phantom extra nomination in terms of ranking (thus Ingrid Bergman trumps Geraldine Page). Honorary statues (Oscar or Jean Hersholt) give the actress a phantom extra boost with the same affect as an additional nomination and win (thus Liz Taylor jumps Jessica Lange)... unless she never won a competitive Oscar in which case it only counts as a phantom win or nomination (thus Kerr cannot pole vault up to do battle with Lange or Blanchett) which of those to be determined by the gatekeeper (yours truly). In the event that someone has multiple wins they may vault over the next immediate rivals if said rivals have never won a competitive Oscar and/or half or more of their nominations are in supporting (thus de Havilland trumps Glenn Close & Thelma Ritter despite having less nominations but can't displace Kate Winslet. This also accounts for two women with only 4 nominations entering the 5 nomination only "Most Beloved" ranks.) 

OSCAR'S HOLY TRINITY 
And Thirty More Royals 

after the jump

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