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Entries in Javier Bardem (24)

Monday
Sep262016

Beauty vs Beast: What is the Word?

Jason from MNPP here, on the verge of admitting something that might get me lynched a la Frankenstein's Monster round these parts -- I have never seen Grease. Yes, that Grease. The movie Grease. I think I'd get less incredulous looks from my fellow movie buffs (especially of the homosexual sort) if I were talking about grease-the-liquid when I say that, but I speak of the 1978 movie starring Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta.

Oh I have seen bits and pieces, it's really quite unavoidable (I would know, I have tried!), but a full-on straight-through sit-down til Sandy & Danny ride off on their hot-rod chariot into the sky? Nope. Five minutes of it gives me the hives and the heebie-jeebies, folks. Send your hate mail to, well, I guess to the comments of this post. Anyway it's Olivia Newton-John's 68th birthday today and we know our host Nathaniel's a big fan (and hey, I love that "Physical" video) so here's your Grease-themed "Beauty vs Beast." Also you could all probably come up with better Pros & Cons for each character than I could so feel free to share those in the comments... alongside your vitriol, of course...

PREVIOUSLY I have to say I am really proud of you guys for our last edition - in our face-off between Tommy Lee Jones and Best Supporting Actor winner Javier Bardem for No Country For Old Men, you bucked the Oscar trend and gave your prize to Tommy Lee with 55% of the vote. He gets my vote too. Said Nick T:

"Every single time I've watched this I've loved Tommy Lee Jones more and more. Ed Bell and Marge Gunderson would have the loveliest conversation."

Monday
Sep122016

Beauty vs Beast: I Dream of Tommy Lee

Jason from MNPP here, fighting the urge to begin and end this week's edition of "Beauty vs Beast" wth a long monologue about the past and/or the dreams I had last night (although regarding the latter Aaron Taylor-Johnson may or may not have been involved - Hi Aaron!), for one of our finest actors, Mr. Tommy Lee Jones, who is turning 70 this week.

I make reference of course to his great performance in the Coen's masterpiece No Country For Old Men, a performance which is always overshadowed (and yes, I preemptively expect the same to happen here) by Javier Bardem's big hair trigger, but not, in my estimation, rightfully so. As I've revisited the film over the years since its release Bardem's scare show has begun to sink into the background and it's Jones' work as the titual Old Man that lingers - as he delivers the dream monologue that closes the film I find myself wanting to stare at his face and all its hills and valleys and sad wisdom for another hour, and another after that. It is a gift. Or maybe you just feel more comfortable voting for someone who'd dare to threaten Kelly Macdonald...

PREVIOUSLY Two weeks back we went full goofy with a love-fest for Joel Schumacher's Batman and Robin, an admittedly awful movie that I nonetheless watch whenever it's on the TV - in a villain-off it was Uma Thurman's Poison Ivy whose green touch warmed our hearts over Arnold's Mr. Freeze. Said Roger:

"As a queer little Earth child mixing potions in the garden, Poison Ivy really spoke to me. Years later, discovering Uma was a fellow Taurus, child of Venus, made worlds of sense to me. I was in green and cherry-red love."

Tuesday
Jul122016

Javier Bardem Is a (Frankenstein's) Monster

Get ready for more reboot franchise mayhem because Universal's Monster Cinematic Universe is growing: Javier Bardem has signed on to play Frankenstein's Monster.

Without any superheros to rely on, the studio is going back to their canon of classic horror icons and roping in some big names. Tom Cruise is the lead in next year's The Mummy revamp, with Russell Crowe also appearing as Dr. Jekyll. Johnny Depp has been confirmed as the Invisible Man for his own stand alone film. Their names may carry cache but each is in need of a (non-Mission: Impossible) hit we can get excited about, so here's hoping they can sommon more than another Van Helsing.

But Bardem's casting is easily the most exciting of the bunch. Let's not forget the actor does creepy so well that he got an Oscar for it, even if his most terrifying feat was his hairstyle in The Counselor. One of Bardem's strongest gifts is his powerful physical prescence and that should make the character a natural fit - and for the inevitable Bride of Frankenstine Penelope Cruz is right there!

With Dwayne Johnson rumored to be taking on the Wolf Man, this begs the question: who should be our next Dracula?

Thursday
May262016

Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem Join The Asghar Farhadi Avengers

After scooping up Best Screenplay and Best Actor honors for The Salesman at the Cannes Film Festival, Iranian auteur Asghar Farhadi has swiftly landed two more international prizes for his next film: Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem. The Oscar-winning couple reuniting onsceen is only the half of it; as previously announced last year, they join producers Pedro and Agustín Almodóvar for Farhadi’s first Spanish-language project. If you place the emphasis on the first word in “cinematic universe,” this is the sort of continent-crossing collaboration of which one dreams. As the superheroes behind A Separation, Volver, No Country for Old MenAll About My Mother, and Wild Tales coalesce and move towards production, we can’t wait to see what kind of direction they take the project.

While Cruz, Bardem, and the brothers Almodóvar have all collaborated with one another in some form before – recently, Broken EmbracesVicky Cristina Barcelona; not so recently, Live Flesh – it should be fascinating to see how these very outwardly expressive films gel against Farhadi’s track record of inwardly simmering yet subtly explosive dramas. It’s no surprise that Cruz and Bardem already contend with some of cinema’s sexiest movie star marriages – contemporarily, I’d give them the gold – and it will be fascinating to see how or if Farhadi bends that image against them. His films tend to combust entrenched socio-cultural strictures rather than manipulate flashy celeb fodder but, then again, Kubrick was never much of an Us Weekly guy and he still warped Cruise and Kidman with fascinatingly transgressive results.

What are some of your favorite movies with IRL married couples thrust into diegesis? Or, on a more directorly note, what do you think of Almodóvar and Farhadi teaming up behind the scenes?

Friday
Apr152016

Pfeiffer + Aronofsky = !!!!!!!!!!!

Pfeiffer in Beat-Up Little SeagullJust so everyone knows, I am indeed still alive. After briefly passing out. I was on a flight when news broke that Michelle Pfeiffer had signed on to the cast of the new untitled Darren Aronofsky film due in 2017 with filming to start this June.

La Pfeiffer has been MIA from the movies in a significant way since White Oleander (2002) her last Oscar worthy performance (she has famously never won despite multiple breathtaking star turns)  and the last onscreen appearance without significant breaks thereafter. She flirted with a comeback in a brief flurry of activity around 2007-2008 (Stardust & Cheri being the highlights) but it's been relatively quiet since then. But no more?...

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