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an honorary for David Lynch 

"All Lynch [movies] are sacred to me. I still remember going to the theater not long after I first moved to Los Angeles to see this, wondering who this unknown actress was in the lead, and coming out dazed and amazed.- Jordan

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Entries in gender politics (223)

Monday
Aug262019

AGLIFF: "Saint Frances" gets an encore screening, lives up to its hype.

by Nathaniel R

After winning SXSW in Austin this spring, the festival darling Saint Frances returned to the film-friendly Texas city for an encore screening at AGLIFF. We were initially perplexed at the inclusion since we hadn't heard that it had LGBTQ content. But, then, we don't read reviews until after screening films so sometimes these details slip by. The film has been picked up by Oscilloscope for distribution (we presume in 2020?) but they have a challenge ahead in marketing it. The film has no name actors, no easy marketing hook (more of a character study than a plot film), and is a debut festival hit from a white male director. We only mention the latter, and half in jest, because the film actually has quite a fresh voice and inarguably feminine POV...

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Thursday
Aug222019

Yes No Maybe So: "Bombshell"

On the heels of Showtime’s unheralded miniseries The Loudest Voice, Lionsgate and director Jay Roach are diving into the zeitgeist with Bombshell (formerly titled Fair and Balanced). The film details the #MeToo fallout at Fox News and stars three of today’s greatest working actresses. For whatever reason, Bombshell is being mostly ignored by many early Oscar prognosticators.

This despite, well...let’s dive into that teaser shall we?

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Tuesday
Jul022019

The New Classics - Meek's Cutoff

The New Classics is a weekly series by Michael Cusumano, looking at great films of the 21st century through the lens of a single selected scene. 

Scene: Emily takes charge
The lost pioneers in Kelly Reichardt’s Meek’s Cutoff travel with a bird in a cage dangling from the back of a covered wagon. It is a token of happier days, when nature was an ornament that decorated your home, not a force that drained the life from you with its punishing distances and barren terrain.

More than a sad joke, the little yellow parakeet also functions as a poignant symbol for the codes of society the pioneers carry with them into the wilderness, codes which become increasingly absurd in the context of their predicament. Lost, dying from thirst, and led by a guide who is either a charlatan or a mad man, the wagon train’s men still make sure to isolate themselves from their wives when discussing strategy.

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Friday
May032019

Links 

/Film RIP Peter Mayhew, Chewbacca actor in the original Star Wars films
Film Comment a wonderful anecdote-filled interview with the legendary casting director Juliet Taylor Dangerous Liaisons, The Exorcist, Close Encounters, Schindler's List, and Broadway Danny Rose are among her many classics.
Deadline It's official: Michelle Pfeiffer, Lucas Hedges and Tracy Letts to headline French Exit...
TFE ...our earlier report about Michelle's interest in doing this movie
Slate thinks the romcom Long Shot is actually pretty feminist (though it's initially strange to hear that claim about yet another movie where the schlubby guy gets the hot girl)

More after the jump including Lucy Liu, an 80s singer coming out, the Karate Kid, the German Oscars, upcoming stage musicals based on movies, and more...

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Friday
Apr122019

Stage Door: Hillary and Clinton 

We're seeing a lot of theater in the run up to the Tonys. Here's new contributor J.B.

For the last twenty years or so, and probably longer, well-crafted stories about women in politics told on stage or screen have frequently been described with words like “timely” or “vital.”  These stories, in many cases, are ones we haven’t heard before, and to the extent we as a society want our art to imitate life (and indeed, vice versa), they are, now more than ever, ones we need to hear.

It is for this reason that Hillary and Clinton, a well-crafted story about the quintessential woman in American politics now playing at the John Golden Theater in New York, feels like such an anomaly. The play, written by Lucas Hnath and directed by Joe Mantello (his SEVENTH production on Broadway in just the last three years), takes place in a hotel room during the thick of the 2008 New Hampshire Democratic Primary and offers an imagined glimpse into what exactly the titular characters (played by Tony-winners Laurie Metcalf and John Lithgow, respectively) may have been thinking, feeling, and communicating to each other at that precise place and time in history...

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Thursday
Oct252018

Months of Meryl: The Iron Lady (2011)

John and Matthew are watching every single live-action film starring Meryl Streep. 

#43 —Margaret Thatcher, the polarizing British prime minister.

MATTHEW: After decades of heavy speculation about when, not if, Meryl Streep would finally win her third Academy Award, the most widely admired actress of all time picked up another trophy for a performance that may best be remembered as a textbook study in How to Win an Oscar. Despite stiff, down-to-the-wire competition from The Help’s eminently deserving Viola Davis, who transcended lackluster material in much the same way that Streep herself did in her most acclaimed tour de force, the actress sailed to victory after a season’s worth of ovations and exposure. The months preceding Streep’s first Oscar win in nearly 30 years found the acting legend accepting her eighth Golden Globe, her fourth New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Actress, her second BAFTA Film Award, her very first Vogue cover story, a Kennedy Center Honors lifetime achievement tribute, and endless publicity concerning one of the most challenging roles of her late career, that of Margaret Thatcher in what should rightfully be called Phyllida Lloyd’s The Iron Lady, but might just as suitably be described as Meryl Streep’s The Iron Lady. And when one truly considers the sheer size and notoriety of the role, who could have possibly topped Streep that year? Conversely, when truly considering the actual performance that returned Streep to Oscar glory, away from all the myth/history-making hubbub that surrounded it, one could be forgiven for wondering, Is that all there is?

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