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Entries in Guy Pearce (6)

Sunday
Jun222014

Podcast: 22 Jump... Streep

The gangs all back to talk new releases. We ride along with Guy Pearce and Robert Pattinson as they drive through post-apocalyptic Australian in The Rover, laugh with the abortion romcom Obvious Child, and share thoughts on two huge sequels to movies that all four of us loved a couple of years ago  (How To Train Your Dragon 2 and 22 Jump Street). Is the love still strong?

Naturally we also talk Meryl Streep since we recorded on her birthday. Expect the usual tangents... somehow Kerry Washington and Maleficent show up (among other weird intrusions).

53 minutes
00:01 Intro & Meryl Streep's Birthday
02:20 David Michôd's The Rover
09:00 How To Train Your Dragon 2
18:15 Channing Tatum & Jonah Hill and "The Ice Cube" in 22 Jump Street
31:30 Obvious Child
41:35 Katey's 2004 List (shout-out to last week)
45:55 Our Favorite Meryl's

You can listen at the bottom of the post or download the conversation on iTunes (though sometimes it takes a day to show up there). Continue the conversation in the comments because, you know, we're allowed to have different opinions and the more the merrier.

 

Streep Day Plus New Releases

Tuesday
Mar252014

Visual Index ~ L.A. Confidential's Best Shot(s)

It's Tuesday night, time for another Hit Me With Your Best Shot. This week we're looking at Curtis Hanson's 1997 Best Picture nominee L.A. Confidential, which was nominated for 9 Oscars including Best Picture and Best Cinematography (Dante Spinotti) both of which it lost to the 52,000 ton Titanic. But it's a lot of people's idea of a modern masterpiece so I was fascinated to read what others had to say about the movie.

See it through multiple sets of eyeballs, in this case 17 of them by clicking on any of the thirteen shots selected ... and please do comment if you like something you read. The series only works properly when people participate. 

BEST SHOT(s)
Arranged in rough chronological order

Making news just like they make movies...
-Coco Hits NY 

Opened up and unnervingly close at one and the same time...
-Timothy Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy

At its heart, Curtis Hanson's stylish exercise in film noir tropes is a reflection on manhood and masculinity...
-RJ, Home Film Schooled 

A clever tip of the hand, although not an overly obvious one...
-Allison Tooey 


A turning point for the character...
- Andy Hall, Three Pounds Lost 


The birth of Shotgun Ed reveals a confident directorial eye...
-CineMunch 

Just as I became disillusioned, my shot would reflect the disillusionment of Ed Exley...
-abstew, The Film's The Thing 

Is it possible to pinpoint the exact moment when a performance wins an Oscar?...
-Michael Cusumano, Serious Film 


Despite the cool dusky warmth, Bud still walks in haunted noir shadows... 
-Nathaniel R, The Film Experience


One of my favorite moments in Kevin Spacey’s career...
 - Robert Hamer, Awards Circuit 


The rain pours as Bud’s hard-boiled mask crumbles... 
-Derreck Johnson 

That's how you die when you're in close-up...
-Cal Roth 


I'm just the guy they bring in..."
-Intifada 


A live wire, always ready to brawl when necessary...
-Shane Slater, Film Actually 


At any given point, any of them could be on either side...
-Jason Henson, The Entertainment Junkie

After all his moralizing, Exley has rolled in the dirt...
-Margaret, We Recycle Movies 


One of the reasons I love this shot is that it really fleshes out the character of Bud White...
-A Fistful of Films 

 

 

NEXT THREE FILMS - THE SCHEDULE

Sunday
Sep022012

Review: "Lawless"

The article originally appeared in my column at Towleroad

A terrible performance... or a great one? You decide.

Special Deputy Charlie Rakes (Guy Pearce) doesn't believe the tall tales about the outlaw Bondurant Boys especially the ones about Forrest (Tom Hardy). Local Virginia legend has it that Forrest can't be killed, that he's immortal.  "Have you ever seen what a tommy gun does to 'immortal'?" Rakes sneers in a (successful) effort to terrorize the town's Forrest-fearing men into submission. Rakes then beats the youngest Bondurant brother Jack (Shia Labeouf) into a blubbering pulp. But, as it turns out, the Bondurant brothers are resilient enough to inspire tall tales. Forrest and his brothers make their living as moonshiners in this Depression-era Western and with Prohibition empowering organized crime, everyone is looking to be the top boss. The brothers value their autonomy but the guns are out and if an actual crime lord (Gary Oldman's "Floyd Banner") don't get them, then the even more crooked law enforcement (Pearce's Deputy) just might.

Such is the bloody conflict of John Hillcoat's Lawless, based on the historical novel "The Wettest County in the World" which was written by a grandson of the Bondurants (all childless during the movie) suggesting straightaway that at least one of them is going to make it out of the movie alive. Not that the film is shy about spoilers given its heavy handed foreshadowing and the past-tense narration. (You gotta Live to Tell).

MORE AFTER THE JUMP...

Click to read more ...

Monday
May022011

Links: Carrey, Turner, Pearce, Jordan (Hal), Thurman

Serious Film Jim Carrey's Oscar snubs. Will Mr Popper's Penguins bring more?
Variety Will The Hurt Locker team triumph again? Turns out the movie Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal were already working on to shoot this summer was about the very team that just killed Osama Bin Laden.
The Film Doctor questions why Fast Five is so popular... and attempts to answer.
i09 worries about Green Lantern in advance. Too much mythology?
Hollywood Reporter Wait. I thought Soderbergh was retiring? And now he's doing Magic Mike, a male stripper drama with Channing Tatum?

AV Club Remember when we were discussing Guy Pearce and why he doesn't get major parts? Well Ridley Scott to the rescue. Pearce has been cast in Prometheus, the is-it-or-isn't-it-an-Aliens-sequel?
Scott Feinberg likes Kathleen Turner in The Perfect Family. Will it find distribution and warm reception outside of Tribeca's fest?
La Daily Musto bizarre story about the Tribeca screening of the documentary Carol Channing: Larger Than Life. I was there and was very close to this row where Security was called. It was quite odd but here's the whole story.

Remember when Nicole Kidman did a commercial for Schweppes? Now Uma Thurman is making bank with the beverage. Here it is.

How many of my favorite actresses will they employ?

Thursday
Apr072011

Links: Penélope & Javier, Guy & Kate, Mavericks & Vampires

 Penélope & Javi
EW Penélope Cruz to headline Woody Allen's upcoming untitled Rome picture.
US Weekly First photos of the Blessed Babe of Penélope and Javi. His name is Leo. Awwww. Love the photo of Penélope with the pacifier in her mouth.
The Wrap Javier Bardem in final talks for Stephen King adaptation The Dark Tower.

Awwww. Look at Baby Leo.

More News
Awards Daily
Boon Jong-Ho (of Mother and The Host fame) will head the Camera D'Or at Cannes this year (they're the ones that pick the "Best First Film")
Gold Derby the Grammys are shedding 31 awards in a streamlining effort. The weirdest switch is dumping the gender specificity. I would die if the Oscars did this. Actresses would never get nominated for everything.
Movie|Line attempts to keep track of the competing Snow White projects, currently scheduled to open within six months of each other next year.

Anton Yelchin and Colin Farrell in the FRIGHT NIGHT remake

80s Mania
Cinema Blend Top Gun is returning to theaters for its 25th anniversary. Ride into the Danger Zone!
NY Post shares new photos from the remake of Fright Night.

Finally...
Cinephilia & Sass names his 5 favorite Guy Pearce performances. Agreed fully on #s 1 & 2. Last weekend while watching Part 3 of Mildred Pierce a rather funny R-rated conversation from both straights and gays in the room erupted (It was awesome. As is his ass in Mildred Pierce. Unfortunately I can't share it, the conversation; I've been told by a girlfriend that the convo is strictly off-blog limits. Damn her!). The Guy/Kate scenes are the best ones in Mildred Pierce because they have more life pulsing through them, and not just because half of them erupt into tetchy sex scenes. The series is best when Mildred is angry and Monty & Vida (soon to become Evan Rachel Wood) are the only ones who significantly raise her temperature.

Doesn't it always feel like Guy is going to have a breakthrough that never quite comes? He has these big seminal movies and then... Shouldn't he be as famous as, like, oh Russell Crowe? Well, maybe not that famous. But it does seem like Hollywood has been inattentive? Or hasn't Chris Nolan been inattentive? For someone who reuses actors why not throw Pearce another plum role?

Not that he isn't busy post-King's Speech.

After piercing Pierce (sorry) he'll co-star in the Nicolas Cage thriller The Hungry Rabbit Jumps, headline the Australian drama 33 Postcards, appear in the sci-fi film Lockout with Maggie Grace and then reunite with John Hillcoat (who obviously loves him: The Road, The Proposition) for The Wettest Country in the World.

Wednesday
Mar162011

Hit Me With Your Best Shot: MEMENTO

"What are you going to do when you find him?"In honor of cinematographer Wally Pfister's recent Oscar win (Inception) and the 10th anniversary of Memento's theatrical release (today), we're looking back on Chris Nolan's breakthrough for the season 2 debut of Hit Me With Your Best Shot.

Memory and its malleability are the skeleton themes which Memento's inky flesh clings to. Leonard (Guy Pearce), who has lost both his wife and his short term memory to a murder/rape, is out for revenge. He tattoos "facts", quotes intended, onto his skin to remember them and he also takes polaroids; these repetitive shots of skin and photography are the movie's signature images. My "best shot" naturally combines them both.

The most ingenious thing about the screenplay's reverse construction is that as you become acclimated to it you start to wonder how each scene will begin in order to get to where you know it's already ended. The same thing happens with the polaroids. After a few of them are revealed you begin to wonder how each was taken. So in addition to Memento's overarching mystery "What exactly happened with that murder?" you get the continually evolving mini-mysteries of what the hell is going on has just gone on?

The final crucial polaroid, which is actually the first in true chronology is this spookily cheerful one of Leonard, pointing to his chest. This is a space we already know he has left empty on purpose, for (maybe) hen his revenge is complete. But that's too literal as he's also pointing to his heart. He looks nothing like the Lenny we've come to know.

Look how happy you were.

Lenny flips it over but no clues await him on the other side. The clue we're looking for this late (i.e. early) in the game is not what happened but who Lenny is or has become. Later in the narrative (i.e. earlier in the film) he'll turn the photo over again while talking to a cop about how no one trusts him. It's an especially telling moment as it's the only time he's not looking for clues by flipping a picture over. "We all need mirrors" he says at one point in the film but he obviously doesn't want to see this particular reflection.

Chris Nolan has returned to these themes of self deception and adjusted memory in subsequent films, but it works best in Memento. Returning to this impressive calling card ten years later,  the biggest shock to the memory is how much fun it is. Each scene involving Dodd (Callum Keith Renne of Battlestar Galactica fame) in particular has a bracing dark humor.

This sense of humor is not referenced to imply that the film fails to intrigue or haunt with its disturbing undertow. It's just that Nolan's subsequent films have often been clever without exactly being "a gas" (just occassionally gassy). I'd be hesitant to call Memento Nolan's best film without rescreening The Prestige but it sure makes a strong claim.

Do I know you?
I urge you to check out these entries. I'm usually pretty proud of my own pieces for this series but I still felt a bit of the old disconnect with Nolan (I've always had to look at the critical reception of his work at a certain remove) and honestly I think some of these accomplices have outdone me with their pieces. Bravo.

FACT 1: Pussy Goes Grrr chose a vulnerable fleshy moment.
FACT 2: My New Plaid Pants sees the symmetries and the fog of memory.
FACT 3: Cinephilia & Sass remembers Sammy Jenkis.
FACT 4: Okinawa Assault identifies the bullet casing as totem.
FACT 5: Serious Film doesn't trust Teddy's lies.
FACT 6: Movies Kick Ass doesn't trust Nolan's eyes.

and my apologies...
I forgot to link to...
FACT 7
: Amiresque is waiting for Natalie to come into focus. Beautiful choice, Amir!

late arrivals!

FACT 8: Against the Hype knows that Memento knows from irony; "it peddles unabashedly in it."
FACT 9: Luisergho finds the facts touching.


Next Wednesday...
We'll be gazing at two bonafide immortals, Vivien Leigh and Marlon Brando, in the well-Oscared classic A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE (1951). It's part of our weeklong celebration for the Tennessee Williams Centennial. If you've never seen it, talk about a perfect opportunity to fill that void in your life. Will you join us?