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Entries in gender politics (166)

Saturday
Jun112016

#ImWithTweet

I know I promised no political talk on the blog until September so I'll let others do the talking as it was such a big political week that it's hard to avoid. That's reflected in our roundup of amusing tweets this week. But first let us begin with this giddy tweet from Patches who claims he had had a few drinks when he wrote it but to us it's the perfectly clear minded truth.

More after the jump of course...

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Wednesday
Jun082016

Make America Link Again

• Vague Visages why critics often fail when writing about acting
EW Forget to link up to the Meryl Streep as Donald Trump thing. Sadly no better video has emerged than this very shaky cel phone
• Playbill in the most exciting theater news imaginable The Lovely Laura Linney and Cynthia Nixon will co-star in the revival of The Little Foxes. The best part? They'll be alternating roles periodically!
• TFE ...If you missed our Smackdown which featured The Little Foxes you should read it. It is a great play which made for an excitingly cutting movie with killer performance by Bette Davis and Patricia Collinge. Can't wait to see it on stage and see what Linney & Nixon do with those two very different roles.

• Slate the enduring influential portrait of genius and mediocrity in Amadeus 
The Tarzan Files has images from Total Film's behind the scenes report on the Legend of Tarzan
Variety Netflix releases some data on how quickly people binge watch but not enough. I mean, I wanna hear how often a viewer DOESN'T complete a show. There must be stats on that and is that how they decide what to cancel?
Variety Geena Davis producing a documentary on Hollywood's gender inequality
/Film JK Simmons is working out a lot to play Commissioner Gordon. Doesn't he know Gordon never gets any action beyond telephone calls and holding a gun?
• Village Voice on Brian de Palma and divisive auteurs eventually being labelled masters
• Comics Alliance James Wan talks about why he chose to direct Aquaman over Flash as both were offered to him
• Pajiba on the worst thing about Warcraft. Yup, we have another incredibly good looking actor (this time it's Daniel Wu) buried in makeup and latex until you can't recognize him.
• TFE ...If you missed the last podcast we talked about this problem with franchise pictures. Why do they keep hiring beautiful actors when they intend to cover up their beauty and make them unrecognizable?
• Antagony & Ecstasy a rare 10/10 review for The Lobster 

Off Screen
SBS a breakdown of victim blaming using pie charts 

 

Sunday
May292016

Swing, Tarzan, Swing! Ch.3: Lex Barker... and Queen Dorothy Dandridge?

As we approach the release of The Legend of Tarzan (2016) we're ogling past screen incarnations of the Lord of the Apes...

After Buster Crabbe filled a loincloth beautifully and Johnny Weissmuller & Maureen O'Sullivan gave us the deservedly definitive Golden Age Tarzan and Jane, the franchise had to recast or close shop. O'Sullivan left first and by the late 40s Weissmuller was feeling too old for the role and also called it quits. The producer Sol Lesser wasn't about to let the profitable franchise go, though, and led a search for a replacement. The winner was Lex Barker, a then little known blue blood actor from New York who had been disowned by his family for choosing an acting career (!) and he took up the loincloth in 1949 for Tarzan's Magic Fountain.

I opted to watch Barker's third go at the character in Tarzan's Peril (sometimes called Tarzan and the Jungle Queen) because it was the first Tarzan film to actually shoot some scenes in Africa (Kenya to be exact) and six actors down the call list was the curio factor of a young Dorothy Dandridge as "Melmedi, Queen of The Ashuba".

Dorothy & Lex after the jump...

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Thursday
May262016

Thelma & Louise Pt. 5: Crossing Over

25th Anniversary Five-Part Mini Series Event 

Pt 1 (Anne Marie & Margaret) 
Pt 2 (Nick Davis) 
Pt 3 (Daniel Crooke)
Pt 4 (Nathaniel R) 

Pt 5 (Finale) by Laurence Barber

It feels awfully daunting to write about the ending of this film, and not just because, as Nathaniel pointed out, ditching the cop who pulled them over isn’t Thelma or Louise’s finest hour. As an Australian who has experienced outback heat, that scene always makes me feel a bit nauseous even if the way their doing away with this discipline daddy is pretty amusing. More logically, they could have made use of his handcuffs to disable him instead, but you have to appreciate that Callie Khouri hasn’t constructed these crimes around what feels like pattern behaviour. Aside from Thelma’s charm assault/armed robbery, their transgressions feel genuinely like two women thinking on their feet.

Also, you catch a glimpse of a shotgun behind him as he trades shades with Louise so I’ve always believed he figured his way out somewhere down the line (shoot the lock, dummy!).

Thelma: Officer, I’m real sorry ‘bout this.”

Louise: I apologise also.”

1:40:00 This aspect of the scene has always spackled over my misgivings about it too. Much has been said and written in recent years about the way women over-apologise, exercising a kind of ingrained cultural deference to male authority. In this scene, however, their apologies become a subversion; the way Sarandon half-heartedly apologises tells us that she’s given up caring about the needs of men in any meaningful way.

Replete with her new Aviators – a hot new look Scott drinks in with a zoom that feels as awed by Sarandon as we do by this point – Louise and Thelma jump back in the Thunderbird and put rubber to the road, the final stage of their road trip stretching out before them. In a brief cut back to the police part of the plot, Harvey Keitel gravely intones, “Dreams will only get you so far, and luck always runs out.” Lighten up, toots...

Click to read more ...

Monday
May162016

It has recently come to my attention... that I enjoy link roundups

The Toast has a hilarious rant about Sebastian Stan's hair in Captain America Civil War
Variety details beginning to emerge on Lars von Trier's serial killer drama The House that Jack Built. (Sounds typically overly complicated as befits von Trier's masochistic working methods)
/Film visits ILM to see "groundbreaking" effects work on the forthcoming Warcraft
Variety Warner Bros already planning a Harley Quinn movie for Margot Robbie. Exactly how many superhero films will we get before Marvel ever dares one?
Tracking Board Jenny Slate reuniting with her Obvious Child director for a comedy called Landline co-starring Edie Falco and John Turturro
People Sad news: James McAvoy and Anne-Marie Duff divorcing after nine years of marriage
Women and Hollywood Laura Dern and Ellen Burstyn starring together in The Tale about a middle aged woman coming to grips with sexual relations she had at 13 with adults - sounds compelling!
Guardian Juliette Binoche on gender in film and disappointment that Scorsese & Spielberg don't feature female leads - disheartening but not totally surprising that Spielberg cites The Color Purple, a film he made 31 years ago, as proof he doesn't have a problem with lack of interest in female characters
The Playlist Another strike against Marvel - they forced a sex change on the villain in Iron Man 3 because they wanted to sell more toys
Variety Madeleine LeBeau, last surviving cast member of Casablanca, has passed away 

Other Showbiz...
THR Broadcast television's upcoming slates - cancellations, surprises, moves, etcetera
Boy Culture we were just celebrating Truth or Dare's 25th anniversary and now we hear that Donna & Niki, Madonna's once longtime backup singers have released a new version of "Rain" 
MNPP Milo Ventimiglia's Ass gets top billing in new TV series "This is Us" 

Today's Must Read
This new profile on Chloë Sevigny by Xan Brooks at the Guardian has been getting a lot of attention for its provocative pullquote on her "disdain for auteurs" but the whole article is interesting.

Photo by Jody Rogac for The Guardian.

Of special interest is her candid conversation about her 90s 'it girl' years in indies.

When Sevigny was Oscar-nominated for her turn in the 1999 indie drama Boys Don’t Cry, as the girl with whom Hilary Swank falls in love, it looked as though mainstream stardom might be hers for the taking. Sevigny scoffs when I say this; she doesn’t think anything is “there for the taking”. But the fact remains that she turned down the sidekick role taken by Selma Blair in Legally Blonde (“which might have made me some money”) and a raft of similar offers. “A few little things like that, more comedic, and it probably wouldn’t have hurt to have done them.” She wrinkles her nose. “But I was very purist back then.”

She also reveals that she really wanted Uma's part in Nymphomaniac and prefers working in television to film now.

Tuesday
Apr192016

Best Shot: The Beguiled (1971)

This week's Hit Me With Your Best Shot subject is Don Siegel's fascinating whatsit called The Beguiled (1971). It's little like Siegel's other collaborations with his muse Clint Eastwood and assigning it to a genre is also difficult both of which might explain its fairly quiet reputation. With the news coming that Sofia Coppola will soon be remaking it, our eyes drank every frame up. And wow is this story of a wounded Yankee grifter in A Confederate girl's school ripe for a revisit. You might say that imagining how Coppola's halflidded female gaze might view this is nearly as exciting as the movie itself but in some ways it already feels like a Sofia Coppola film. Profound interest in sensual and anthropological gazing at the desires of women who can't articulate their desires? Check!

Some of the English language posters are hilariously false, suggesting it's a shoot-em-up manly western. One poster actually has four men on it when Eastwood is the only man of significance in the movie and practically the entire film involves a group of women buzzing around and hypnotized by the sick man in their midst. So I've illustrated with a French poster that feels right.

Best Shot choices are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Apr122016

Happy 100th: Why Doesn't Movita Have a Biopic? 

Today is the Centennial of the Mexican American actress Movita, who was born as Maria Luisa Castaneda but renamed Movita by MGM because the name sounded Polynesian to them. Well maybe it's her centennial. She claims the studio fudged with her age to make her older for legal reasons. She's surely best remembered today as "Tehani" one of two young island beauties (the other being "Maimiti" played by Mamo Clark) that got entangled in all that Mutinous Best Picture business on the Bounty back in 1935 (if you know what I mean).

Movita went on to international fame and married two famous masculine hunks, first the boxer Jack Doyle and then superstar Marlon Brando (quite atypically she was an "older woman" marrying a young superstar) so we're guessing she had a type...

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