Oscar History

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Entries in Drive (31)


Links: Martha Momoa Malick Moneyball

In Contention has an important addendum to the misleading 'Sean Penn hates The Tree of Life' stories circulating the net.
The Daily Beast It's recently come to my attention that Drew Droege (of "Chloë Sevigny" drag fame) has written musings about playing Chloë and meeting the real icon. She did not throw a drink in his face but kissed him and laughed. Love that.
Little White Lies has an interview with Conan's Jason Momoa in which the actor offers to scare the shit out of the reporter by doing the Haka.

Serious Film "Bridesmaids stands alone" in 2011's box office charts.
Movie|Line remembers Kristen Wiig's supporting bit in Adventureland 

Cinema Blend is Germany next for world traveller Woody Allen's filmography? P.S. Did you hear that Judy Davis joined the cast of his current Rome picture? (Yay)


Oooh... new posters for Martha Marcy May Marlene from EW.

Do you like? John Hawkes eyes peering out on the one to the left are spooking me! Remember how intense his stare was in Winter's Bone? I haven't tried it but those are actual working QR codes on the movie poster -- should take you right to the trailer if you have a QR scanning app on your phone.

Brad Pitt still has magic hair in his late 40s. The shirt is by Alexander McQueen.Scott Feinberg discovers a funny irony in the Drive press notes.
Today Movies on the funny women breakthrough of this, 'The Summer of Raunch'
Fandor gets the great South Korean film Poetry tomorrow, so make sure to watch it. This is a sampling of reviews. I was quite honored to be named a "standout" review, and keeping such fine company.
Michael Musto predicts the Tony nominees for Best Actress in a musical a year in advance. We'd say that's too early but then we'd be huge hypocrites (hello, Oscar fanaticism
New York Magazine on Brad Pitt's Moneyball pitch. He's comparing his character arc, or lack of one (hmm....interesting) to 70s films, explaining that it's a drama about process and his character challenging the way things have always been done.

I thought of The Conversation: How do you tap a phone? Or Thief, with Jimmy Caan: How do you crack a safe? And I saw in it a guy who had an obsessive quality like Popeye Doyle.

I don’t really like big character-arc epiphanies. What I most loved about those seventies films is that the characters were the same at the end as at the beginning. It was the world around them that had shifted."


'said everybody's gonna link today, link today, link today'

Pop & Hiss Reeve Carney, who previously appeared in Julie Taymor's Tempest and Julie Taymor's Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark, has signed on to play Jeff Buckley in a biopic. Sure he looks right enough for the part, but sadly, at least thus far, he doesn't seem to be much of an actor. 
In Contention loves the motion picture soundtrack cover for Drive more than the movie posters. Fair enough... but omg what's inside!!!. I'm buying the crap out of that CD when it becomes available. I kept wishing the songs were originals so that I could be incensed when Oscar ignored them.

Reeve Carney as himself. Ryan Gosling in fetishized scorpion jacket.

Time Out HK
has a good lengthy interview with Hong Kong actor Daniel Wu of Bishonen fame. He's starring opposite fighting Russell Crowe (literally) soon in The Man With the Iron Fists
Cinema Blend has a funny thought. What if Channing Tatum's stripper movie Magic Mike is the first film wherein Matthew McConaughey (who just signed on as the boss man) doesn't take his shirt off? 
Cineuropa Lars Von Trier's next picture Nymphomaniac will detail a woman's sexual life from birth til she's 50. Good luck with the, uh, casting of that one Lars. 
Playbill Cyndi Lauper & Harvey Fierstein's stage musical adaptation of the drag movie Kinky Boots (yes you read that sentence right) will get a big workshop in September. I didn't even like the movie and I'm so excited for it.
Via Twitter omg. Enver Gjokaj (Dollhouse) is in The Avengers. Yay! I have no idea how this photo is supposed to prove it but it is.
Hollywood Reporter Oscar buzzing Viola Davis (The Help) may star in a new HBO series. First Julianne... now Viola? Pretty soon no actresses will be left for the movies ;) 
The Cut the cast of Glee is in Vogue. Why no Mercedes or Santana?  

Music Video Break
Do you like Mika? I do muchly. Here's his latest music video "Elle Me Dit" but I only share it on this film blog because he's moved on from Grace Kelly to... Frenchsuperstar Fanny Ardant (8 Women, Ridicule, Roman de Gare). The video seems vaguely inspired by Wes Anderson (does Fanny then equal Anjelica Huston?) divided by François Ozon because if he was going for Wes, there's not enough center frame closeup.

What'cha think?


DRIVE. "People will love it ten years from now!"

I only left the Drive screening two and a ½ hours ago at the time of this typing. But I feel like I have two thoughts I want to get out immediately. (Plus a second screening seems wise before reviewing as it has that further-riches- await-you vibe emanating from its dark surface.)

The film is super-stylish and idiosyncratic and though some critics already love it, I'm not sure that people by and large will. But in ten years, if it's not a surprise hit in September, people will be pretending like they saw on opening night and were part of its first rush of fandom when in fact they caught it on DVD or cable a year or more after it flopped in theaters. I'm not wishing it ill, trust, but it feels like a possible contender for a Big Lebowski type trajectory, if you know what I mean. It's an odd film but it sure does know itself. Yay!

People will love it ten years from now!
-Nathaniel R, The Film Experience

Listen to me... Yeesh! I'm never ever going to make it as a blurb whore.

The new posters like the one above -- they just keep coming -- keep using the pink font and at first it's like "what? pink for a noir about a bad-ass driver?" But then you see the movie and all is right with the marketing due to the movie's neo-noir-neo-neon-1981 stylization. (What?)  It's not exactly my type of film -- very bloody -- but I kinda loved it anyway. Or maybe admired/liked? I haven't decided. It's only been 2 and ½ hours. But my god can Nicolas Winding Refn compose a frame. I didn't see this coming when watching Bronson which was attention grabbing enough but hugely messy and undisciplined in comparison.



Posterized: Weekend, Drive, Like Crazy, I Don't Know She Does It

How 'on message' are the crop of posters that have been harvested recently to announce the fall movie slate? Let's take a look starting with this lovely hazy poster for Weekend (2011). I'll ask you first what you feel about it at first glance before I talk about the movie after the image. The poster was shot by Quinford + Scout a couple who have been documenting their own relationship in photographs.

Andrew Haigh's romantic drama follows a quiet gay man (Tom Cullen) through a one night stand with a political artist (Chris New) and watches as it stretches into the next morning and beyond in ways that surprise both of them. The film has won festival awards at SXSW, OutFest and Nashville (yours truly was on that last jury) and when it finally arrives in the fall it will undoubtedly draw comparisons to Before Sunrise for the surface reasons that it's a small, talky, mostly two character romance (though otherwise its quite different). The deeper similarity is that it's actually very, very good. I think this poster is exceptional at conveying that you're in for a mood piece, something memorable to hang on to like a faded treasured photograph and as such I think it's great. But I've actually seen the film. Maybe it won't say much if you haven't?

Two other new posters are also going for moods that verge on nostalgia if more traditionally warm and golden: another romantic drama Like Crazy which will attempt to convert its Sundance buzz to Oscar hype on October 28th,  and a film I'd never heard of called Tanner Hall about a girl's boarding school starring Rooney Mara. Ah, that's why. It was filmed in 2009 but it's coming September 9th now that Mara's star is in the process of ascending.

Am I forcing trends now?

Sarah Jessica Parker, Brad Pitt and Ryan Gosling after the jump

Click to read more ...


Yes, No, Maybe So: Drive

Robert (of Distant Relatives) here with the lastest Yes, No, Maybe So. Even those well versed in the films of Nicolas Winding Refn may have been surprised when his latest film Drive, starring Ryan Gosling as a Hollywood stunt driver by day/getaway car driver for hire by night and Carey Mulligan as his love interest, was announced as part of the lineup for Cannes 2011. It premiered as one of the break out hits of the festival, and Refn took home the Best Director prize. Since then it's been hype, excitement, anticipation and endless tals of Refn/Gosling man-love. For those of us who didn't catch it on The Croisette, we're finally getting our first look.

I admit, I count myself among those who'll see just about anything with Gosling in it. But the supporing cast is equally intriguing, Mulligan, Christina Hendricks, Brian Cranston, and Albert Brooks whose buzzy villainous turn isn't even played up here. In fact there's something refereshingly sincere about this trailer, in a world where action movies are either for kids (or at least made to appeal to the widest possible PG-13 demographic) or ironically self-aware in a Machete, Shoot 'em Up kind of way that loves winking at you over their intentional B-picture status. No one here is mugging or pandering. At least not that I can tell.
Of course, I'm not sure that the Gosling fanbase and the gritty action movie fanbase are one in the same. I admit that I have mixed feelings about the genre and aren't even sure if I'm looking foward to this as a lark or with the excitement of something that could really be among the best films of the year. If the film didn't star Gosling, or the rest of that cast, or didn't have all the Cannes hype behind it, would I be as excited? Then again toss in enough hypotheticals and you're left with "if this film didn't have the elements that made it this film, i'm not sure I'd want to see this film," no kidding.
Really though, any personal reservations I can muster up are minor. I find myself squarely in the "yes" category for this. The trailer does a good job of solidifying it as a tough-as-nails action film with some staple archetypes and high cinematic style while maintaining plenty of mystery. It's a good tease. And then there's Gosling. Has anyone perfected the good boy charm/bad boy intensity like he has? Can we declare this "The Year of the Goz?" Maybe not yet, but he certainly seems at home as an action character.

Have you been anticipating this since Cannes? How important is the presence of Gosling? How much has the trailer affected the hype? Are you up for a good thriller?


Extremely Loud-Mouthed and Incredibly Close-Up Oscar Predix

...and everyone is doing it now that the year is half over. Wheeee.

Best Picture
Here are updated predictions in all categories from Best Picture down to Best Key Grip. The new Best Picture rule -- they can have anywhere between 5 to 10 nominees and we won't know until Oscar nominations are announced -- is causing me chart difficulties. I can't figure out, aesthetically, how to divvy up charts with so many different numerical outcomes. If you must know I would like to make this wild July speculation that there will be 6 nominees to include War Horse, The Descendants, We Bought a Zoo, J Edgar, The Artist and new entry Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close which now plans to arrive in 2011.

It's not that I have any particular hunch or faith in that upcoming Stephen Daldry 9/11 film. It's more like anti-wishful thinking: See, I'm allergic to movie representations of that day since I was here in New York City and I tend to find the world's and especially the media's obsession with it absolutely grotesque. (For reasons that have nothing to do with cinema or the Oscars, so let's move on...)

John Williams and Steven SpielbergBiggest Annoyance
The music categories are always high-maintenance in terms of predictions. Original Song has zillions of hard to figure eligibility issues. Plus, there are still so many films that have not announced their composers in the Original Score category. Yes, it's often a late-to-the-party job as movie productions go. But I always suspect that even after the composers are announced that it takes a good long while for that information to trickle onto key pages like official sites and the IMDb. If you know of a better source of who's scoring what, do let me know. (I don't want to have to call 12 production companies!) With J Edgar, however, which also hasn't announced, it feels safe to assume that Clint Eastwood will compose some simple piano motifs for it because that's how he do.

That said, this category might be easier to predict than usual because the King of the Category John Williams will surely take up 40% of it. Oscar's music branch has always trembled for his Treble, zinged for his Strings and mooned over his melodies so they'd never pass up the chance to honor him for The Adventure of Tin Tin and for War Horse now that he's scoring again after basically a six year break from features (excluding that Crystal Skull reprising). John Williams turns 80 next year and chances are strong that they won't want him to retire without a sixth Oscar.

Craziest What If?
The new prediction I'm most enamored of because it's a Winding road way off the well-paved Bait path and because it would be highly awesome if the crazy thing came to pass and I predicted it first is an editing nomination for the Cannes hit Drive (2011). I mean why the hell not, right? It's July. Think outside the Bait Box! The prediction holdovers that I was initially excited to imagine but am now worried about -- though I didn't change them -- were all the Captain America nominations (Costumes, Makeup, Visual Effects). When I went there months ago I was totally confident that it could happen but public fatigue with superheroics makes me wonder if all films from this genre will be snubbed even in seemingly likely places like visual effects. Did Green Lantern leave an emerald stain?

The movies are getting all jumbled in my head now.

Why is Gosling driving off with the good Captain. Where is he taking him? "SHOTGUN!"

And on a final note, looking over Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor the competitions and competitors seem far more interesting than usual. Supporting Actor, for example, seems to have a number of Career Honors vs. Career Honors vs. Career Honors possibilities and in the lead race, could it finally be Leonardo DiCaprio's year?  Or maybe the manly half of the acting lineups will get boring real fast and it really will come down to a Close vs. Streep 80s throwback Actress-Off. Maybe it's just the oppressive July heat warping our crystal ball.

Comments? You realize we cry a single tear for every post that doesn't enter double digit comments, right? Don't cause us any more agony. Once you're done contemplating Oscar, hit the gym, the links, and the (Italian) showers. Yeah, yeah, it's summer ...but this blog has air conditioning.