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COMMENT DU JOUR
best of 2014 -- any fycs?

YEAR IN REVIEW

ANY FYCS ?
 
"LINE READING: Chris Pine's "I was raised to be charming, not sincere" is an instant classic, and should be studied by actors playing that role for years to come.
-Colin

"BEST MUSICAL SEQUENCE IN A NON-MUSICAL: Hilary Swank in The Homesman tries to woo a suitor with homemade dinner and a song. So delicate and heartbreaking." - Cameron

"BEST CAMEO: Ben Affleck's Penis." -J. Garner

 

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Entries in Hunger Games (46)

Sunday
Nov232014

Review: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Michael C here with what I suppose is part one of my review of Mockingjay.

“I wish she were dead,” says Finnick Odair at the start of the third entry in the Hunger Games series. “I wish they were all dead and we were too,” he adds to include himself, Katniss, and all the tributes that remain in the clutches of the Capitol after the events of Catching Fire

If that seem like a dispiriting way to start an action blockbuster rest assured it perfectly establishes the tone of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, a grim, disjointed film that is short on thrills and long on misery. Francis Lawrence’s sequel progresses from torture to bombs dropped on hospitals to the wreckage of towns strewn with skulls, all of it scrubbed down to a bloodless PG-13. Our big reward for wading through this suffering is to see our beloved Katniss strangled within an inch of her life. 

I expect fans of the series will like it a lot...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep252014

"Malkolink Malkolink Malkolink!"

NY Daily News truly absurd photos of John Malkovich recreating famous images of Marilyn Monroe, Bette Davis, and less glitzy iconic art, too, like Piss Christ and American Gothic
Slate great piece on why we need less reboots and more original genre fiction - interesting points made that aren't just the usual bitching
Pink is the New Blog Channing Tatum inviting fans to be part of Magic Mike XXL
The Film Stage an interview with director Pawel Pawlikowski on his Polish hit Ida
Interview talks to the director of Wild Tales, which I loved at TIFF, Damián Szifrón
Shark Robot Avengers as cold cereal t-shirts. The best ones are clearly Thorrios and Loki Charms 'bifrosted!"

 

In Contention another reason to love Virginia Madsen besides that immortal wine monologue from Sideways - she loves the classic Network. She loves it lots
Variety Looks like it's Rachel McAdams, Vince Vaughn, Colin Farrell and Taylor Kitsch as the four leads directing by Justin Lin for True Detective Season 2. Vaughn is a crime boss, the rest are cops. I love Farrell but this does not excite me as much as the promise of Cary Fukunaga directing Harrelson, McConaughey and Monaghan but we'll see
Twitter ...if you must know my general feeling on Rachel McAdams
Variety Julie Delpy's next effort as a triple threat is a French language comedy called Lolo. She's asked the very funny actress Karin Viard to co-star
Awards Daily Freida Pinto's latest vehicle, Desert Dancer, will open the Santa Barbara Film Festival
Rope of Silicon Interstellar is Chris Nolan's longest film yet. This always worries me with directors. If your films get progressively longer it's often indicative of hermetically sealed bubble trouble. Or believing your own hype and forgetting about the actual story you're telling.
Coming Soon ... speaking of. New stills from the film
The Film Stage listen to the score for Gone Girl
NY Daily News Rumors abound that Quentin Tarantino wants Viggo Mortensen for Hateful Eight. So weird that no cast is in place yet given that we've already had a teaser

Today's Must Read/Watch
Extension 765 Steven Soderbergh is goofing around with Raiders of the Lost Ark - it's now a black and white silent - to teach film staging

I value the ability to stage something well because when it’s done well its pleasures are huge, and most people don’t do it well, which indicates it must not be easy to master (it’s frightening how many opportunities there are to do something wrong in a sequence or a group of scenes. Minefields EVERYWHERE....

Oh and remember that time when people were talking up a Costume Design nomination (which of course didn't happen) for Fantastic Mr Fox? Now there's coverage of the costumes for The Boxtrolls. Hey costume designers are needed on stop motion films.

Awardage
In Contention Casting Society of America nominations and honors. The weird part is that Rob Marshall who just generally casts big stars whether or not they're right for musicals, is being honored. But on a happier front, for the TV Pilot honors Looking was nominated and that show was definitely well cast.
Variety The Cinematographer's Guild are honoring a handful of folks too

P.S.
I had myself a final getaway last weekend to Fire Island before I am chained to the computer and Oscar coverage for the next four months. While I was there I met Robert Chang who was a lot of fun and we argued* about this article he wrote on Hunger Games and Gary Ross's use of breaking the 180 line. It's an interesting argument but it personally drives me crazy when directors break rules largely because they can. It always looks sloppy to me. Still the argument is interesting that it's only used for emotional reasons rather than action reasons which is where you usually see it. What'cha think? Maybe if there was only that and the action sequences were actually well filmed I'd like it.

* I know you're probably not supposed to debate film theory when you socialize with the gays on Fire Island but I am who I am.

Wednesday
Jul302014

'Mom! Streep & Julie are flirting again'

I can't resist putting these images in dialogue. Are the two esteemed actresses thinking of each other in their grey flat-ironed wigs, or is this a subliminal cry for a sequel to the sapphic wonders of The Hours? As Christian so correctly observed on Twitter, Nicole is never going to let a grey hair near her scalp. But she died in The Hours so she can't be in the sequel anyway.

This twinned image was fun to discuss on Twitter but after the fact it reminded me of an earlier conversation with Anne Thompson and Kyle Buchanan about why there are so many aged lady villains in YA adaptations. My contention is that it's their ageist way of playing both sides. So many stories about young girls that pay lipservice to "girlpower" are, just like stories centered on men and boys, still scared of the power and agency of (adult) women; these prejudices are deeply ingrained.

Saturday
Jun282014

Pass The Rubber

If this is an actual costume* in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 and not just an advertisement can we just give Kurt & Bart** the Oscar now?***

 

* I realize it's very possible that the movies brilliant ad campaign is completely unconnected to the actual film(s) and possible made by whole different teams

** Kurt & Bart, in case you are as yet unaware (which is possible since they're fairly new to the movies), are a costume design duo. They've only been active since John Cameron Mitchell's Shortbus in 2006 but this past year they broke out in a major way having costumed both a Best Picture nominee (Dallas Buyers Club) and a movie that just design-candy across the board (Stoker)

*** Yes, I already tweeted this exact sentiment but not all of you have Twitter and I felt like looking at the photo again. I initially resisted posting it since I hate posting commercials as content (it's such a sneaky way for the studios to get free advertising) but the campaign is just too smart to not share at least one image. You can see more here.

Wednesday
Jun252014

Citizen Peeta

JA from MNPP here, with that there the first teaser for Mockingjay, the third Hunger Games film and the first half of the two-part finale. (What convolutions our sentences must take in this new world of franchise logic.) If you ask me Donald Sutherland would already have a couple of golden boys (I mean even some nominations, at least!) on his mantle, I love him that much, so highlighting his sparkling sneering performance as President Snow in this video seems wise to me, and makes my extremities tingle. And I love Josh Hutcherson playing the role of "Kept Boy" up in there -- because my wiring is strange I immediately thought of Burt Reynolds in Citizen Ruth, of all things, with that young boy he always had beside him. Now that would take the Hunger Games to a whole new level of complications, eh? Katniss storms the Capitol and finds Peeta massaging oil into Snow's shoulder-blades? Be brave, Francis Lawrence!

Monday
Apr142014

Links: MTV Movie Awards and More...

The Guardian asks a really good question. Had James Dean lived would he have been a Newman or a Brando?
Nerd Approved swapping the genders on Disney characters
Comics Alliance one minute of the opening battle from X-Men Days of Future Past. Looks exciting
The Guardian an interview with the disfigured actor from Under the Skin
Vox 21 Times Stephen Colbert has dropped his satiric character and been himself 
Telegraph an unusually candid confession: Pierce Brosnan doesn't think he was good enough as James Bond
Empire Harrison Ford talks Bladerunner sequel 

MTV Movie Awards
I "forgot" to watch. But the internet provides the highlights anyway. Like Zac Efron getting his shirt ripped off. The masses have now seen his chest approximately in everything but it still excites them (More is more?)

Comics Alliance one minute of the opening battle from X-Men Days of Future Past. Looks exciting
Towleroad Jared Leto's AIDS focused speech. Yes he won another award for Rayon "Best Transformation"
YouTube they aired a commercia lfor A Million Ways to Die in the West. Charlize Theron's look is very Sharon Stone in The Quick and the Dead, right? Only with humor.
In Contention has a best and worst list from the night
Variety has the complete winners list which were awful... Mila Kunis terrible terrible villain in Oz: The Great and Powerful won (there were such better options like my Best Villain Nominees). Yikes. For what it's worth Hunger Games: Catching Fire won Best Movie and both lead actor prizes. Yes, Josh Hutcherson too! Since this is, you know, MTV and Twilight no longer exists.

This Weekend's Miracle
Michelle Pfeiffer left the house!

click to embiggen

We always have to report on it since it's so rare. She was at Coachella in California this weekend with an undetermined friend.

Today's Watch
Awesomely talented Laura Benanti explains the current Broadway season. (I don't understand why a great TV series doesn't snap her up. She was so good on the short-lived Playboy Club and in The Sound of Music: Live and surely she deserves better than a Law & Order franchise. Especially since the bitch can sang.)