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Entries in Jackie Chan (5)

Tuesday
Sep032019

Beauty Break: The Celebrity Portraiture of Phil Stern

by Nathaniel R

Happy Phil Stern Centennial! "who?" you say? Phil Stern, you philistines! He's one of the great Hollywood photographers. He lived a very long life, dying just 5 years ago at 95 years young but his work was largely before our time. We grew up with Herb Ritts and Annie Liebovitz as the biggest names in celebrity photoshoots but as long as Movie Stars have existed there have been artists behind the camera helping to mythologize them. Stern was one of those idolmakers taking several amazing photos of James Dean, Charlton Heston, Liz Taylor and many other important celebrities from the 20th century. Though celebrity portraits and candids weren't his only claim to fame having also been a war photographer. 

After the jump 14 other images from Stern's vast portfolio that we adore...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
May082019

The Man Is Chan

By Salim Garami

What's good?

I just wanted to tie up our celebration of Jackie Chan's quintessential Police Story and Police Story 2 finding their way into the esteemed catalog of the Criterion Collection by recognizing the other thing he's best known for besides kicking fools in the face: pre-emptively auditioning for the Jackass crew by partaking in some of the most dangerous stunts recorded on film. Safety is for mere mortals as far as Chan is concerned and he is probably convinced that if any characters are ever killed on-screen in a movie, then the actor themself must also be killed for versimilitude.

Not really, but much like his fight choreography, the sort of discipline and ambition Chan displays on screen in order to wow audiences around the world is the kind that pays off a lifetime of painful falls and crashes. He mirrors his own character's resilience to obstacles and defies fear and death with his stuntwork.

Let's get that listing over with so we can watch some more Jackie Chan.

Click to read more ...

Sunday
May052019

Chan's the Man

By Salim Garami

What's good?

This past Tuesday saw the home video Criterion Collection release of a 4K restoration for Police Story and Police Story 2, two of movies that made a household name out of Hong Kong international superstar Jackie Chan. Chan is ostensibly a man who needs no introduction in the world of action cinema, but put it this way: the bodily injury and risk, the way this man twists and flips his body and face for our entertainment, the rigorous and grueling discipline that he pushes despite looking so rubbery and clownish... it all makes Tom Cruise's high-altitude climbs and dives look like square cowardice.

The Hong-Kong-based actor-director is a more painful descendent of the school of physical comedy that Harold Lloyd and Buster Keaton opened up, utilizing his background in the Peking Chinese Opera to make things as small as answering multiple phone calls look like athletic feats...

In order to illustrate his excellence and to celebrate this canonization and recognition through the Blu-Ray set release, I've opted to provide two mini-lists here: his top five fights in this post and his top five solo stunts in a post later tomorrow...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Nov162016

Honorary Oscars - The Acceptance Speeches

The General Election really threw off coverage here but we're back on our feet (if a bit wobbly) and we hope you are, too! The annual Governor's Awards where the Honorary Oscars are handed out were held this past weekend with basically everyone in attendance. Here are the four honorees giving their very sweet speeches from the event. They're so moved as well they should be by this historica honor.

Enjoy if you haven't yet seen them...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep012016

Honorary Oscars to Jackie Chan, Frederick Wiseman, Lynn Stalmaster, and Anne V Coates

The Board of Governors from AMPAS have finally announced their selections for this year's Honorary Oscars. This year they're not giving out the Thalberg (for Producing) or the Hersholt (for Huminatarian efforts) but just the regular ol' Honorary Oscars. If such a thing can be deemed "regular" since they're so hard to come by. Consider that James Ivory still doesn't have one despite being a masterful oft imitated but never duplicated director behind three major Best Picture contenders (and many other beautiful films) and never having won an an Oscar and being 88 years old. Nathaniel wept. Oscar remains remarkably stingy with the gays but at least they've noticed the need for diversity in other ways.

Congratulations to this year's esteemed recipients! 

Jackie Chan's starmaking hit The Legend of Drunken Master (1978)

SUPERSTAR JACKIE CHAN
He's a famous actor, producer, and director and his filmography is just enormous with well over 100 films under his belt. What's more he's a major figure in Asian cinema which is about the last place Oscar ever looks to hand honors so good on them. He's only 62 which is young for an Honorary prize but Spike Lee got his while still in his late 50s recently so they appear to be loosening up with their age restrictions. 

EDITOR ANNE V COATES
Though The Film Experience is against Oscar's strange practice of giving Honorary Statues to people who've already won (like Coates) there's no denying that she's one of the best editors the cinema has ever seen. And in truth they've been a bit stingy with her with only 5 nominations and a win (Out of Sight, In the Line of Fire, The Elephant Man, Becket, and her winning film Lawrence of Arabia when she was still in her 30s). I was personally horrified when she was not nominated for her vigorous artful editing on Erin Brockovich (2000). At 91 she doesn't work much anymore but she did edit Fifty Shades of Grey (2015) recently. 

DOCUMENTARIAN FREDERICK WISEMAN
The Academy has been egregiously stingy with this 86 year old. He's never been nominated despite being considered one of the all time greatest documentarians. He has made nearly 40 documentaries including such well regarded titles as Titicut Follies (1967), High School (1968), Hospital (1970), Welfare (1975), Domestic Violence (2001), and At Berkeley (2013)

Lynn Stalmaster at the TCM FestivalCASTING DIRECTOR LYNN STALMASTER
Since AMPAS does not have a category for casting this is a great use of the Honorary award. Lynn Stalmaster is 88 years old and a legend in his field. Within his first three years as a casting director he already had a Best Actress winning film under his belt (I Want to Live!, 1958). Among his many films there are quite a few examples of situations where the perfect actors for that particular project where chosen including: In the Heat of the Night (1967), The Thomas Crown Affair (1968), They Shoot Horses Don't They (1969), Harold and Maude (1971), Deliverance (1972), Tootsie (1982), The Right Stuff (1983), Nine and a Half Weeks (1986) and many more. I adore that he had such a thing for Faye Dunaway though maybe she regrets how frequently he cast her since Mommie Dearest (1981) and Supergirl (1984) were towards the end of it. 

The non-televised Governors Awards will be held on November 12th. As usual we'll be doing some posting on these four careers in the lead up to their honors so we have quite a range of films to choose from. Any requests?