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Entries in Christian Bale (33)


Women's Pictures - Mary Harron's American Psycho

Anne Marie continues a special horror month on "Women's Pictures"

Fun fact: American Psycho was the single most voted for film for the horror edition of Women's Pictures. Despite that, I almost didn't include it. This isn't because of some sudden onset of squeamishness on my part, or dislike of the film. American Psycho simply isn't a horror movie, at least not by conventional standards. American Psycho is director Mary Harron's dark Juvenalian satire of American consumerism, materialism, and the crisis of masculinity in the turn of the 21st century.

Though set in the 1980s, American Psycho is one of a handful of films from the late 1990s and early 2000s that violently pokes at the concept of modern masculinity. Like American Beauty and especially Fight Club, American Psycho confronts the idea of modern man chained to a desk, unfulfilled and overburdened by contemporary consumerist definitions of success. The titular Psycho is Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale), a music-obsessed Wall Street broker in the decade where everything, from hair to shoulder pads to paychecks, was bigger. Bateman has all of the plastic markers of success: trendy apartment, good haircut, designer cloths, WASP fiance, the right friends, and a killer business card. But under his flashy, fake veneer, Patrick is all id. He wants to kill. He wants to fuck. He wants to possess. [More...]

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Random List-Mania: 40 Best Original Movie Songs of the 1990s

I can't let Dick Tracy go quite yet! All that discussion and no tremulous ode to Stephen Sondheim's brilliant song score? It won't stand! Every moment when Breathless Mahoney (Madonna) and 88 Keys (Mandy Patinkin) are in frame together is gold. 

(Eagle-eyed early 90s obsessiveness will know that Mandy Patinkin also pops up briefly in a celebrity-filled party scene in the Madonna documentary "Truth or Dare")

Beautiful Song Craft and/or Cheesy Epic Ballads For the Wins
* Oscar nominee ** Oscar winner 

  1. "Wise Up" -Magnolia (Aimee Mann)
    technically this song first showed up on the Jerry Maguire soundtrack which is why it wasn't eligible for the Oscars for Magnolia but let's make an exception
  2. "Sooner or Later"** - Dick Tracy (Stephen Sondheim)

  3. "Gangsta's Paradise" - Dangerous Minds (Coolio)
    deemed ineligible by Oscar due to sampling -- people were obsessed with the scary new "is this songwriting?" world of sampling back then. What to make of it? 
  4. "Stay" - Reality Bites (Lisa Loeb)
  5. "Be Our Guest" - Beauty & The Beast (Alan Menken & Howard Ashman)
  6. "More" - Dick Tracy (Stephen Sondheim)
  7. "You Must Love Me"** - Evita (Andrew Lloyd Webber & Tim Rice)
  8. "God Help the Outcasts" - Hunchback of Notre Dame (Alan Menken)

    32 more tunes after the jump

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Yay! It's the return of the long departed much requested Q&A column. Readers ask questions. I pick a handful or two to answer on Mondays. Hopefully it'll be rejuvenating. Every March I feel more like the banner up top. It's the collapsing period post-Oscar.

Let's get right to it and see how long I can keep up it this spring.

JOEY: Now that Julianne has her Oscar, which overdue actress would you most want to see walk away with her golden boy? Annette? Michelle? Someone else?

NATHANIEL: Obviously the 1980s were when AMPAS screwed up most in terms of key actresses who defined the time not being rewarded. This accounts for Close, Weaver, Turner, and Pfeiffer being unOscared. Assuming it's too late for them (and I do) the best I can hope for is the Academy to stop thinking only men deserve Honorary Oscars and take care of at least one of them. Also: is it too greedy to say that Kidman needs a second to remind everyone of her bonafide movie stardom?

ANDY: Looking back on your past Film Bitch Awards, do you regret giving a particular performance your win?

the answer and six more questions after the jump...

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Review: Exodus: Gods and Kings

Michael C here to look at an embattled new wide release. 

Ridley Scott’s Exodus: Gods and Kings is so dead in the water, so consistently baffling in its choices, that it is difficult to know where to begin. How about the simple fact that when one is adapting the Old Testament there is no getting around God? 

Gods and Kings doesn’t go so far as to omit God altogether. The Lord is present (sort of) in the form of a petulant eight-year old child who first appears from behind the burning bush to issue vague marching orders to Moses. What Scott and his quartet of screenwriters do attempt is an end-run around the almighty in the form of an ill-considered attempt to wedge the Book of Exodus into the Batman Begins mold where all the miraculous events are brought down to Earth with realistic explanations, or at least semi-plausible interpretations.

Is God really talking to Moses or is Moses talking to himself because his exile knocked a screw loose? Does God intervene at the Red Sea or did the Jews get lucky with a fortuitous low tide? [more...]

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The "Knight of Cups" Pastiche Tease

I understand that people are talking about the Malick teaser today? I feel stymied by this one (shockingly I'm a "no" at first glance so I'm skipping the traditional YNMS) but I shall share a few thoughts. Mostly, though, I feel Cate Blanchett sums it all up for me in her early teaser line-reading. So long as you pretend that she's me and I'm talking to Terrence Malick instead of Wandering Bale Sun-Logged in the Egyptian Desert Hollywood Wilderness...  

You're so different these days. What's going on with you?

Between the club music and what looks like a mash-up of several very familiar -- though I can't quite place them -- films, I just don't get it. Something about this Knight of Cups teaser smells like selling out. By which I mean there's a strong whiff that that is also happening thematically as Christian Bale goes Hollywood and loses himself in decadence and luxury and money and La-La land. But perhaps the love of a good one can savzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Splash with me cold water. I rise!

Click to read more ...


Beauty vs Beast: Two Total Bettys

JA from MNPP here, surfing the crimson wave to today's round of "Beauty vs Beast" - today would've been the 37th birthday of Brittany Murphy, you guys. And since we can hardly let that terrible Lifetime movie be the absolute and final word on her legacy (I watched about fifteen minute of that thing and I was all, "As if!") let's step our memories back to happier times, when the skirts were short and the socks were knee-high...


It's maybe a stretch to call Tai the villain of Clueless, but she is the antagonist that shakes up Cher's insulated world, so just go with me. And it's not like anybody would vote for Cher's actual nemesis, Designer Imposter Perfume Amber.

You have seven days to negotiate your final grades in the comments!

PREVIOUSLY In celebration of Interstellar's release (here in retrospect I kind of wish I'd waited until I saw the interminable movie first - ugh) we gave last week's competition over to Christopher Nolan's most memorable battle of the comic-book titans, and y'all voted chaos to reign - Heath Ledger's Joker strutted away in a blow-out with over 80% of the vote. Said Daniel Armour:

"If were just talking about The Dark Knight then the Joker. I loved Bale as Bruce Wayne/Batman overall but TDK didn't give him as much to do as the other films. Also, Ledger was excellent as The Joker and truly deserved the acclaim - and awards - he got for the film."


Blog Wars: The Link Strikes Back

Must Read ICYMI
The Hoopla Frances McDormand suggests that looking your age is a subversive act. Great stuff. It's been great to see her face all over signage for Olive Kitteridge

More Linkage
Coming Soon strange news: Christian Bale drops out of Steve Jobs biopic two weeks after taking it claims 'he's not right for the role'. Hmmmm, then why take it?
CHUD the poster for Neil Blomkamp's Chappie with Hugh Jackman. It's weird and cute and hmmm.
Previously TV great piece on a key scene in the awesome series Transparent (on Amazon - you must watch it if you haven't, especially if you're interested in the psychology of family dynamics or in trans issues) 
MNPP if you missed any episodes of Jason's "13 Phones of Halloween" now is the time to rectify that. Was your holiday good this past weekend?
Towleroad Benedict Cumberbatch responds to complaints that The Imitation Game isn't as gay as its subject
Dissolve JJ Abrams confirms via "thank you" letter (such manners!) that Star Wars Episode VII has wrapped filming 
Deadline bonafide crazy person Nicolas Winding Refn is making a female led horror film called The Neon Demon because...

One morning I woke and realized I was both surrounded and dominated by women. Strangely, a sudden urge was planted in me to make a horror film about vicious beauty" 

Variety Johnny Depp performed with Marilyn Mason on Halloween
MNPP [NSFW] Awww, it's Dolph Lundgren's birthday today. Remember Showdown in Little Tokyo? a Bad Movies We Love winner
/Film Tom Cruise doing his own Mission Impossible stunts again like a crazy person
Pajiba Taylor Kitsch "Officially" reacts to being replaced as Gambit by Channing Tatum in the forthcoming superhero movie
Pop Culture Crazy thinks The Tale of Princess Kaguya is a knockout (I wish I liked this one more! I want to)
Daily Mail Jamie Dornan refers to his cock as "gratuitous, graphic and ugly" when discussing what we will and won't see in 50 Shades of Grey. How could any part of him be ugly? 

Exit Video ICYMI
Every death in the original Star Wars trilogy. The saddest part isn't even a minute in when the body count jumps to 2 billion. Sigh, Alderaanians. We hardly knew thee.