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Entries in Charlize Theron (56)

Saturday
Apr232016

The Huntsman: Winter's War

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

The Huntsman: Winter’s War, now playing, promises a “new” fairy tale. That’s true only if you’re willing to stretch the definition of the word. This “new” and awkwardly titled picture is both prequel and sequel to Snow White with some Frozen fan fiction in the middle. It begins long before the events of the revisionist Snow White & The Huntsman (2012) and eventually skips ahead to pick up where the last movie left off. In case you’ve forgotten your blockbuster history — spoiler alert! — Snow White and her Huntsman (Chris Hemsworth) triumphed at the end by killing the true twin stars of the picture: Queen Ravenna and Her Oscar Nominated Costumes (a.k.a. former Oscar winners Charlize Theron & Colleen Atwood).

Dead though Ravenna was, when there is money to be made in franchise resurrection, nobody stays buried. In the new film we learn that the royal witch came to power alongside her kind loving sister Freya (Emily Blunt). After an unspeakable tragedy, though, Freya also became evil. Ravenna had that Magic Mirror to inspire her wickedness but Freya opts for a worn Blu-ray of Frozen as unholy talisman...

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Thursday
Mar312016

Burning Question: What current star would have benefitted most from the Studio System?

This post is brought to you by agonizing advertisements for The Huntsman: Winter's War. Which looks dreadful.

Sometimes when I look at Charlize Theron, it hurts. She has such old school "MOTION! PICTURE! SPECTACULAR!" scale to her persona, this inarguable magnificence / screen beauty. The catch: she's almost never in movies that do anything for her when she's doing so much for them.

She might be my #1 choice for current star whose career is alright but would have been spectacular under the Studio System when star magnetism was carefully catered to, packaged, and regularly served up rather than an "extra" your random movie can sometimes benefit from.

Who is yours?

Thursday
Mar312016

Where My Girls At? The Maybe Cannes Bound Edition

Here's Murtada speculating about which lovely ladies might appear at the Cannes Film Festival.

There is one thing that is certain to happen at Cannes every May. Marion Cotillard appears on the famous steps, resplendent in Dior couture, to represent a film in competition. She knocks everyone's socks off with her performance, then invariably fails to win best actress from the jury. It happened with Rust and Bone (2012), The Immigrant (2013), Two Days One Night (2014) and Macbeth (2015). Is there a Cotillard/Cannes awards curse?

This year she will have two more chances to lose, and cement the legend of the curse...

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Sunday
Feb282016

The 88th Academy Awards 

Chris Rock's opening monologue will take some time to parse. We'll have time to parse tomorrow, okay? Like most Oscar opening monologues it had a combination of lame expected jokes and great curveball laughs but this time a super uncomfortable crowd, no one knowing when it was okay to laugh surely fearing the camera would be on them. Some of it was really inspired though, and an artful deflection and condemnation simultaneously.

To continue the racial themes he introduces Emily Blunt and "someone even whiter" Charlize Theron, who happens to actually be African. So funny. But in a thinky/smile about it later way if you realize. Both stars of that awful looking Snow White sequel look sensationally gorgeous. Charlize Theron's neckline dives deeper than the whole Best Actor field combined.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY  Spotlight
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY The Big Short

Adam McKay's says his movie is about "financial esoterica" which is surely a first for an Oscar ceremony. 

Another first (and last) for Oscar -- a Stacey Dash appearance. I actually do not get this joke unless... Or, rather, I get it (Stacey Dash being an awful person who wants black history month and the like abolished) but it's super unfunny. 

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

lots more after the jump

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Saturday
Feb272016

And the Links Go To...

People say such strange things when they're talking about Oscars
Bwin predicts Leo will lose the Oscar. One especially weird bit of reasoning is that all of the Actor nominees are playing good guys. Um, did they watch Steve Jobs?
The Guardian says a "conservative" estimate is that Australians will win 10 Oscars tomorrow. Conservative? Have they not heard of The Revenant?
/Film Stunt people want their own Oscar and recently protested again. Unfortunately they also felt the need to belittle other industry talents saying: 

 People love action; that’s why people go to the movies. No disrespect, but who goes to the movies to see the hairstyles?”

*raises hand*

More Oscar Mania
Vanity Fair fun interview with nominated Jenny Beavan, Mad Max Fury Road costume designer, with a choice Charlize Theron quote
Boston Globe really interesting piece from Ty Burr on "what if the Oscars didn't exist..." and it takes you to place I personally wasn't expecting
Psychology Today on why we're obsessed with the Oscars. STOP PSYCHOANALYZING ME! 
IndieWire Ira Deutchman suggests changes to make the Academy more diverse. "First film" would be interesting and skew young but I am adamantly opposed to breakthrough since that is too easily gamed -- see the "breakthrough" prizes Charlize Theron won for Monster after several years of stardom. We'd have a whole new category fraud problem with that.
The Guardian has an interesting take on the Short Film categories -- why don't people watch them when they're increasingly available -- and why do they feel like commercials for features? 
Variety beautiful reminiscence from Alfre Woodard on her earliest theatrical success and her 80s Oscar nomination 
Tim Brayton's Oscar Predictions 
Movie Motorbreath's Oscar Predictions 

General Film
Interview ZOMG Julianne Moore interviewing Christina Vachon!
Instagram The Sleeping Beauty dragon via LEGOs! 
i09 JJ Abrams is claiming Star Wars will feature gay characters. I'll believe that when I see it (but until then it's fun that Oscar Isaac winked to queer fans with Poe Dameron. And also the Star Wars Saga is largely asexual anyway so...

Off Cinema
Pajiba nails Marco Rubio with a great Turing Test joke
i09 Bram Stoker Awards -- for horror fiction. Which of these will end up as movies?
/Film Tom McCarthy is going to follow up Spotlight with a Netflix series called 13 Reasons Why... it's based on a bestseller but honestly the suicidal premise sounds atrocious / reductive. Already worried!
Jeanne the Fangirl amazing find - a letter to Marvel from 1974 complaining about Iron Fist's whitewashing. Here we are in 2016 and Marvel is STILL planning a white Iron Fist even though the story is Asian by origin
Playbill.com has a badly needed redesign. Check it out if you love Broadway 

Today's Watch
A Cat predicting the Oscars. (Monty, TFE's Oscar predicting cat, wouldn't cooperate this year but he's always been temperamental about his psychic duties. Also: he's very very old now and only wants to sleep.) So anyway here is some random cat who thinks he can do it. Rampling, eh?

Thursday
Feb112016

Charlize Theron Plays Fast & Furiosa With Her Action Star Potential

Daniel here. If your Charlize senses have been tingling lately then it’s fair to assume your road rage has set in: Variety reports that Universal is circling Imperator Furiosa herself to star as the lead villain in Fast 8, the latest model in their rubber-burning line of Fast & Furious flicks. 

Gallons of credit go to this high-octane franchise for encouraging onscreen diversity and staging sky-is-the-limit set pieces, sure, but just because Charlize Theron can drive, it doesn’t mean she needs to take your wheel.

The main attractions in a Fast & Furious are smash ‘em up automotive melees with basic visuals broken up by character-light screeds on the true meaning of family; you’ll find none of Mad Max: Fury Road’s kinetic wizardry or redemptive arcs. Pitting their rogue gallery of villains against Charlize Theron is like straight-up reaching for the wrong Ben & Jerry’s pint. Jason Statham or Luke Evans’ unhinged, kitchen sink nutsos are more Everything But The… whereas her slow burn Coffee Coffee BuzzBuzzBuzz charisma sneaks up on you before you realize your heart’s about to explode.

Surely we can find a better action franchise for our feminist warrior to throttle into high gear. And, yes, options are aplenty.

• ALIENS. The logical place to start is unfortunately a moot point. The Aliens series already had their chance for another fearless Ripley type in Ridley Scott’s underrated franchise refraction Prometheus, where you’ll remember (or not) that she was relegated to playing comatose corporate ethics incarnate, Meredith Vickers.

• BOND. Although her co-star Idris Elba is everyone’s favorite hypothetical James Bond, it’s a safe bet that she could outsmug Craig, outdrink Connery, and outlast Lazenby. 

• MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE. Let’s relieve Tom Cruise of jet-hugging duty and let Agent Charlize hunt down snipers at the opera in Mission: Impossible.

At the very least, she’s a shoo-in for that rumored all X-chromosome Ocean’s ElevenWhich action franchise should Charlize Theron anchor instead of Fast 8?

Tuesday
Dec152015

Contrarian Corner: Mad Max Fury Road

Lynn Lee test-drives a new, potentially recurring feature wherein TFE members voice dissent on Oscar hopefuls and critical darlings.

If you’re on this site, it’s safe to assume you pay attention to movie critics. It’s also a fair bet you’re likely—or at least more likely than the average person—to agree with the critics when they coalesce around a particular movie. But if you’re like me, every once in a while a film comes along that generates a level of critical enthusiasm you just don’t get. You’d like to share or at least understand it, but instead find yourself feeling like the lone non-believer in a church full of the radiant converted.

That’s how it’s been for me and Mad Max: Fury Road, which met with rave reviews and solid box office when it hit theaters this summer. More recently, it’s picked up a raft of critics’ awards and nominations that have kept it in the Oscars conversation - not just in the technical categories but the majors, including picture and director. Any doubt about its chances stems from the fact that it’s a “genre” film, not its intrinsic merits, which most agree transcend its genre. [More...]

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