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Entries in Christoph Waltz (21)

Friday
Dec262014

The Less Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

Or, "Try Harder Next Time You Talented So & Sos!"

Our Worst of the Year feature "Cinematic Shame" has shrunk in size. This is not because movies are better. This is because your host (Nathaniel R) has somehow become less jaded and more appreciative of the cinema over the years. In fact, he often can be seen crinkling his brow when faced with reminders that a lot of people who write about the movies don't like very many of them. Even more casually evident: lots of people who write about awards season don't like awards season. (A solemn promise to the disgruntled: there are plenty of other topics worth writing about - pitch those to your editor and TRUST that this topic will be amply covered, and all over the place, in your absence!)

But let's not distract ourselves.

 In the lists that follow as we gently spank famous people on their virtual bottoms we remember that they can turn right around the following year and wow us, thereby humbling us for doubting them. History is full of examples. We all have our "off" years or... um...decades. 

Uncomfortable segueway to Tim Burton...  [*cough*]

But look how cute this Big Eyes sketch he drew is! [Tomato stained lists are after the jump]

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Dec142014

"As You Wisssssssh" - Missi's Favorites

Favorite Movie

-by Missi Pyle

I have seen The Princess Bride about 200 times. I remember I saw it in the theater as a Double Feature with my friend Christy Brown in the 8th grade. It was playing with Dirty Dancing randomly. And when both movies were over. My friend Christy was totally floored by Dirty Dancing and I thought she was an idiot. I was like - wait the Princess Bride is the Best Movie ever Made. And she was like - no- Dirty Dancing.

The friendship didn't last.

But I just kept watching that movie over and over. I think it's where I developed most of my sense of humor. I have gotten to meet several people from that movie: Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Wallace Shawn. I never know what to say. I just can't even handle it.

I know its a lot of people's favorite movie. I don't care. If there is a heaven that movie will be playing on a loop in the background.  

Favorite actors?
There are zillions but a random top 5...

Christoph Waltz -Fuck me. He is so good. I kind of think I should just quit. He blows me away

Robin Williams -Pure magic. Good Morning Vietnam? What? Who can do that? Again. I should just quit. I got to work with him on The Crazy Ones. It was one of the greatest moments of my life. 

Judy Davis -Her performances in Barton Fink and Husbands and Wives just slaughtered me. 

Ryan Gosling - I did a table read with him once. A table read. That is all. He looked at me across the table and... no he looked INTO me. Yes. he's hot. But that wasn't it. All the sudden there was this moment happening. It was some of the best acting I have ever done. What is it they say about acting? It's all about the other person? Anyway. That was what he did. He made it all about me. And all the sudden it was real.

(sigh)

Madeline Kahn- Genius. I bow down to and sometimes talk to now that she is in the spirit world. I often get into a character and think WWMKD? And that is how I go about the character.

 

Editor's Note: We hope you're enjoying today's celebrity guest blogger Missi Pyle. She'll be back tomorrow afternoon for two final and truly awesome posts (after a brief interruption for awards business and Critics Choice Award Nominations). Are her favorites also dear to you?

Thursday
Dec042014

Breaking: Oh Jimmy! Daniel Craig Returns as 007 in "Spectre"

It wouldn't be accurate to call James Bond the mother the father of all franchises since serialized storytelling was with us since the very beginning of the recorded image. Nevertheless it does sometimes feel like James Bond pioneered the art of staying in the game. It maybe even influenced the rebooting craze long before it had a name with its continual cosmetic surgery; can you imagine how expensive it is to make Timothy Dalton look like Pierce Brosnan and then like Daniel Craig?

Daniel Craig is among the sexiest mofos on the planet but perhaps this is why he looks so beat up all the time? Either that or because people have been torturing him onscreen from the very beginning.

Case in point: This is not an image from the new Bond film but from the Cate Blanchett film Elizabeth (1998)

The new Bond film which begins production in 4 days and arrives in theaters on November 2015 is the 24th official entry in the series (though there are a two apocryphal films as well) and will be called Spectre. It's worth noting that this is, like Skyfall, a very short title. The shortest Bond titles (though not running times) since Dr. No (1962) which kicked off the whole series! Sam Smith will be doing the theme song.

Sadly, the casting doesn't seem very imaginative since Christoph Waltz is among the villians (i'm sorry but I'm done with him post Big Eyes. His range is shrinking which is quite an overachievement since he already won two Oscars for the same performance!) 

The cast in order of TFE's current levels of fandom...
Daniel Craig as Bond, James Bond (returning)
Ralph Fiennes as M (returning)
Lea Seydoux as Madeleine Swann (new)
Ben Whishaw as Q (returning)
Naomie Harris as Moneypenny (returning)
Andrew Scott as Denbigh (new)
Monica Bellucci as Lucia Sciarra (new)
David Bautista as Mr Hinx (new)
Rory Kinnear as Tanner (recurring)
Christoph Waltz as Oberhauser (new)

Do you think Lea's AMAZING entrance in Ghost Protocol inspired her future Bond Girl femme fatale role (say yes, that's rhetorical)

Do you see every Bond film or wait for the general cultural response?  Given Skyfall's historic gross and Oscar over-performance (doubling the entire franchises's Oscar tally!) do you think they're in for another zeitgeist hit and awards contender. Or do you think this one is bound to be a bit of a letdown?

 

Sunday
Oct192014

Thoughts I Had... The "Big Eyes" Poster

We finally have a poster for Tim Burton's Big Eyes. Herewith some thoughts as they came to me.

• "Visionary Director" would be so much more impressive as a description if it weren't so overused.
• "Big Eyes" could well describe lots of celebrities: Emma Stone, Amanda Seyfried, Marty Feldman*, Heather Graham, Jake Gyllenhaal, Susan Sarandon, Anne Hathaway, Sailor Moon.
• Christoph Waltz and Amy Adams have Normal-Sized Eyes but that will never be a film title. The only person in this cast with gargantuan eyeballs is Krysten Ritter
The tag line is basic but it does cleverly have a double meaning with the last bit "... and everyone bought it" 
• A lot of people seem to be sure that this one won't be a major Oscar player but apart from test screenings (a notoriously unreliable source of info) no one has seen it so it's one of our mystery movies when it comes to the competition this year.
• The Big Eyes team, cast and crew, has been nominated for 37 Oscars and won 7 (most of those for Waltz & Colleen Atwood). 
• Why do they always make ginger movie stars blondes when the movies take place in the 1950s? There were actually more gingers back then statistically. (And I don't want any "Amy Adams isn't a natural ginger!" backtalk in the comments -don't be literal!)
• It's fun that the screenwriters Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski get such prominent yellow billing at the bottom. We'll pretend it's a retroactive thank you for Ed Wood (1994) rather than a contractual negotiation! 

*Just wanted to see if you were paying attention

Friday
Sep192014

Yes, No, Maybe So: Big Eyes

abstew here. Well, it must be Oscar-movie season because no sooner did we receive a teaser trailer and release date for A Most Violent Year, but mere hours later, the first trailer for the Tim Burton-directed Oscar hopeful Big Eyes popped up as well. Big Eyes is the biopic of kitschy painter Margaret Keane (Amy Adams) and her husband Walter (two-time Oscar winner Christoph Waltz), who falsely claimed to be the paintings' creator. The screenplay from Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski reunites them with Burton (who actually collects Keane paintings) for the first time since the Oscar-winning Ed Wood 20 years ago. But, I know y'all really just wanna know, does the film have what it takes for the quintuple Oscar-less Amy Adams to finally be crowned the winner? Let's examine with the trademarked Yes, No, Maybe So...

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Friday
Aug292014

Review: The Zero Theorem

Michael Cusumano here with the latest dispatch from the bizarre world of Terry Gilliam.

Terry Gilliam is an artist one can’t help but root for. The image of Gilliam that comes most readily to mind is one from the great behind-the-scenes disaster documentary Lost in La Mancha. It’s early, before his production has imploded, and the director reviews one of the few shots he managed to get on film for his doomed Don Quixote project. The image of the three men cast as giants lumbering toward the camera delights Gilliam to no end. His childlike glee at the sight of their rolls of fat jiggling in grotesque slow-mo is an image of an artist in touch with the pure, silly thrill of filmmaking. A man who lives for the experience of seeing his cracked visions transferred to the big screen. 

On the other hand, the subtler, less flattering image of Gilliam I took from that documentary is that of a filmmaker capable of being swept up in the joy of the process to the point of being blithely indifferent to the needs of the audience. I remember leaving La Mancha with the guilty suspicion that maybe it was for the best that The Man Who Killed Don Quixote crashed and burned on take off. Better to live with the unrealized ideal than to see one’s dream project fail to live up to expectations. What little footage we see in the film suggests it would have been of a piece with his 21st Century output, which is to say fanciful bordering on incoherent, fascinating to look at but too messy to inspire emotionally investment.

More...

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