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Entries in gender politics (169)

Tuesday
Jul052016

Links in the Shell

Apartment Therapy Nancy Meyers movie kitchens ranked (somehow The Intern only makes it to 5th. I just saw that and it was surprisingly warm and adorable... and yes still filled with real estate porn)
The New Yorker looks back at the Cassavates classic Faces (1968)
/Film Ghost in the Shell producers are finally responding to whitewashing casting controversies. They promise they've been 'very very careful' with the beloved material even though they cast a white actress (Scarlett Johansson) in the iconic Japanese role. We love Scarlett so so much but this type of thing continues to be a huge problem.

 

/Film There's going to be an actual Captain America statue in Brooklyn's Prospect Park
Cinematic Corner celebrates Margot Robbie (there will be a lot of that going around soon)
Variety Animation Awards for Europe soon -- their version of the Annies
Screen Crush Thor: Ragnarok officially began production in Australia yesterday
Awards Daily Why not give Roger Deakins the Oscar he has long deserved this year for Hail Caesar! 

Off Cinema
Theater Mania Lin-Manuel Miranda and JLo are collaborating on a song to benefit the victims of the recent Orlando shooting
EW American Horror Story Season 6 has a new logo (which looks like a devilish 6) a premiere date (9/14) and most of the cast from Hotel will be back though Lady Gaga is rumored to have a supporting role this time around which begs the question of who the lead will be? Let's hope it's Sarah Paulson. Why keep searching for new leads when your MVP is right there all the time.
AV Club CW seasons will now be available  just 8 days after their season finale on Netflix
Towleroad new behind the scenes photos from season 2 of Sense8
MNPP on the broken promise of Rick Yune's nude scene in Marco Polo Season 2
Comics Alliance the Harvey Award nominees for comics in 2016.  Valiant Entertainment thoroughly dominated the nominations. Here's one category you can investigate if you're interested

Two Controversial Pieces on Actresses
Variety's Owen Gleiberman is looking forward to Bridget Jones's baby, sort of, in the piece "Renée Zellweger: If She No Longer Looks Like Herself, Has She Become a Different Actress?." It's prompted lots of calls of sexism but it's an interesting article that wonders what we're supposed to do when actors who play characters we love who no longer look like the characters they created (not from aging... though people who are offended by the article keep saying that. Sorry people but Colin Firth still totally looks like D'Arcy. Just an older D'Arcy). I myself always wish actresses wouldn't mess with their faces (if they must, temporary measures are best since the effects wear off if they don't look right!). Their faces are their brand and actors are famous partially because they're so beautiful just as they are. Why mess with perfection? I don't think it's true -- and I keep reading it -- that if actresses don't mess with their faces they don't get work. From what I've seen actresses who mess with their faces in any noticeable permanent way actually STOP getting much work. It distracts audiences too much. Note how Kate Winslet, Annette Bening, Helen Mirren, Meryl Streep, and so on keep aging and keep working. 

Wesley Morris' piece for the New York Times "How I Learned to Tolerate Blake Lively" is ostensibly about her performance in The Shallows and Hollywood's ever rotating it girls. People are offended by this one too - partially due to the interchangeability notion of blonde actresses. But it's also interesting because it gets at something that I think anyone can relate to: the experience of loving an actor that Hollywood has moved on from. 'Wait, I wasn't done with _____! " that Wesley says this about Kate Hudson is bizarre but to each their own.

Wednesday
Jun292016

Welcome to the Academy, 683 of You!

With AMPAS under so much scrutiny this past season for their lack of diversity, they made several rule changes about membership and ruling bodies within the various branches. Here's the big power move. They've invited twice as many people as they are usually prone to invite. Invitations have gone out to 683 film professionals this year.

That is a lot of new members, percentage-wise, for a group known for their exclusivity that for a long time was hovering around 6,000 members. According to Academy graphics 46% of the new invitees are women which is a smart move given that Hollywood has struggled in the gender balance department forever despite the fact that civilization has always been half women. (It might have been smarter to make it 75% for a few years to make up for lost time at eliminating the silly gender disparity but we applaud any efforts to work towards a better 50/50 balance.) 

41% of the new invitees are people of color...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jun282016

Review: The Neon Demon

This review was originally published in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad

What are we looking at? 

The Neon Demon‘s first tableau features Elle Fanning, throat slit and reclining on a chaise lounge floating over a pool of photogenic crimson blood. It’s so perfectly lit and shaped it begs to be honored as a metaphoric pedestal exalting her death. Is the obviously smitten man photographing all of this her serial killer who missed his calling as an art director?

Click to read more ...

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...

Click to read more ...

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...

Click to read more ...

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 ...