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Entries in Jeremy Renner (30)


Reasons Why Rachel Weisz is in "The Light Between Oceans"

by Murtada

Mild Spoilers, proceed with caution.

The Light Between Oceans opened this past weekend to OK reviews (including a positive one from Nathaniel). But as I sat watching Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander fall in love, I was waiting for Rachel Weisz. And I kept waiting. She appears very late in the film and even then her character is still secondary to the main narrative. So I tried to imagine why would Weisz take this part. Why would she play second fiddle to an up-and-comer (Vikander wasn’t well known when this was shot almost 2 years ago).

And actually there a few good reasons: 

• Shooting in gorgeous New Zealand. Besides the knitwear, the locations are the most breathtakingly beautiful thing in Light. Weisz never actually makes it to the lighthouse, but the quaint town where her character is ensconced has beauty to spare.

• Deepening her relationship with Derek Cianfrance. Apparently an early iteration of Blue Valentine (2010) was supposed to star Weisz and Jeremy Renner. It fell through because of financing woes.

• Sharing scenes with Michael Fassbender. What an actor, what a man. Maybe Weisz was shown pictures of him in period undershirts - his best look in the movie - and that's why she signed on. 

Three very good reasons (besides liking the story and the part). Have you seen Light yet? And could you imagine Blue Valentine without Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling? 

A First Glimpse of Villeneuve's 'Arrival'

Chris here with a first look at one of the fall's big Oscar question marks. Last year, Denis Villeneuve's Sicario did quite well by Oscar standards if you consider its punishing bleakness and divisiveness even if it missed the major races. This year he's returning with the sci-fi Arrival, and we've been patiently waiting to see if this will raise his Oscar cache.

To go with the building buzz, here are our first looks...

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National Gay Killers Day. What? Ewww!

Because we're having fun with this little feature we'll continue. On this day in history as it relates to the movies...

1881 Ahead of her time Clara Barton founds the American Red Cross. She doesn't get a biopic because Hollywood is only interested in "Great Man" biopics
Happy Centennial to author Harold Robbins who penned 25 best-sellers some of which became famous movies like The Carpetbaggers (1964), the Elvis flick King Creole (1958), and the notorious Pia Zadora Razzie winner The Lonely Lady (1983)

Rope (1949) and Swoon (1992) - two great movies inspired by the Leopold & Loeb case

1924 Chicago college students Leopold & Loeb murder a teenage boy in a "thrill killing." Their crime inspires the story of the gay deviants in Alfred Hitchcock's Rope (1949), the Cannes Best Actor winning Compulsion (1958) and is recreated in the New Queer Cinema classic Swoon (1992)
1926 Kay Kendall of Les Girls (1957) fame is born
1952 Two time Oscar nominee John Garfield (best known for The Postman Always Rings Twice and Gentlemen's Agreement though those were not his nominated films) dies unexpectedly at the age of 39. The stress from the blacklist and Communist witch hunts (he'd refused to name names) were said to cause his heart attack.
1959 Gypsy opens on Broadway starring Ethel Merman. Mama Rose becomes the defining female role of musical theater, as Hamlet is to male drama thespians. Dozens of divas play her thereafter on stage, tv, and film. The best of them is Imelda Staunton, no joke. 

1960 Jeffrey Dahmer is born in Wisconsin. Becomes an infamous gay serial killer in the early 90s just in time for America's obsession with serial killers to go truly perverse and mainstream. Within a decade or two they're the heroes on television shows for f***'s sake (This has always bothered me about showbiz - assassins and serial killers are professions as popular as being a doctor or a waitress.) Jeremy Renner plays Dahmer in the eponymous movie which yours truly has never seen. Have you? the general critical consensus is that Renner was very very good in it. But nobody was annoyed by his total franchise sellout-ness back then because it hadn't happened yet.

1970 FINALLY some role-model gayness for May 22nd, redeeming the day from infamy. Harvey Milk picks up Scott Smith in a subway station as a 40th birthday present to himself, as lovingly reenacted by Sean Penn & James Franco in Milk (2008)
1974 Fairuza Balk is born. As soon as she can speak she calls the four corners to insure that no other actresses gets her signature role in The Craft years 22 years later. 
1979 "White Night Riots" in San Francisco because the gays are rightfully furious about the "manslaughter" conviction in the assassination of Harvey Milk
1980 Star War: The Empire Strikes Back (1980) released in theaters. It's still the best one.

1992 Johnny Carson welcomes his last guest on "The Tonight Show," Bette Midler, after 30 seasons on air. She wins the Outstanding Individual Performance Emmy for this performance. Two years later she is nominated for Gypsy and loses. 
1999 Susan Lucci spoils her fame-boosting status as the ultimate awards show loser by winning on her 19th consecutive Daytime Emmy nomination


Review: Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation

Tim here. After Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol came out in 2011, it seemed that the series had finally figured out how to become the best version of itself and could go on forever doing the same thing. And that's exactly what has now happened: Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation is slightly worse than its immediate predecessor in nearly every way, slightly better in a couple of others that are especially important, and is light years beyond the first three movies released between 1996 and 2006.

Like every M:I film, Rogue Nation is an almost perfect standalone object, with a couple throwaway lines referencing previous adventures and the assumption that you already know and like brash, middle-aged Impossible Missions Force agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise, the series' producer as well), but otherwise assuming that it needs to make its own case for existing (it's enormously gratifying in this age of shared universes and heavily choreographed multi-film narrative arcs that there's still one franchise out there that's willing to just make movies that work solely in reference to themselves. And it does this splendidly, throwing us right into the action with that "Tom Cruise hanging from the side of a plane" setpiece that has been the the focal point of the ad campaign, and building up to bigger and better things from there. [More...]

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Oscar Season Cometh. And Other Links

Vox has an article on how binge-watching is changing television -- and not just on Netflix. Some interesting thoughts if too repetitive
Variety Lupita Nyong'o headed for an Off Broadway play called "Eclipsed" - I'm still stunned and disappointed that her film docket isn't full through 2018. Hollywood is so f***ed up. 
Vulture it's somehow fitting that the news that Tom Holland has already shot his first Spider-Man appearance in  Captain America: Civil War broke in an interview about Chris Hemsworth's huge prosthetic penis in Vacation. The world is a horny voyeur for all of Marvel Studios's masturbatory impulses

/Film oh noooo a Robin Hood origin story in the works? I hate origin stories so much. Hate them hate them. When will our global obsession with "origins" of characters we already know end? Just tell a story about them!
Broadway Blog Bent, the powerful play about gay men in the Holocaust is getting its first major revival in some time. Plays through August in LA. Go and report back! Jake Shears from the Scissor Sisters is even in it! Anyone remember the film version with Clive Owen?
Variety finally Ryan Kwanten books another series (I was wondering why he wasn't highly in-demand post True Blood). He'll play one of two leads in Amazon's new Western series Edge. I forsee a problem: People in westerns tend to keep their clothes on.
/Film Both of David Fincher's "straight to series" shows for HBO are apparently in trouble
The Guardian celebrates Jeremy Renner's five best performances. Well someone had too... he may be infinitely more famous now but his respectability as an actor seems to have taken a serious plunge once he attempted  four different franchises leaving tough drama far behind
Kenneth in the (212) rewatches the great LGBT flick Edge of Seventeen, which relates to a recent study on sexuality and friendshipe 

Peculiar WTFs?
Pajiba on The Shroud of Cruise in a pop-up church in Florida 
Boy Culture does Guy Ritchie require all his wives to be branded?
NPR here's a weird one. A 80 year old much decorated tough guy Marine looks back on his secret: he was the voice of Disney's wee fawn Bambi 

Oscar Season Cometh
Variety Student Academy Award finalists in animation, documentary and more. One of them is actually from BYU this year (my alma mater) and thats...
"Ram's Horn" by Jenna Hamzawi
TOH! reports that Cary Fukunaga's Beasts of No Nation is getting a short theatrical release after all, presumably for Oscar play. Which is too bad for me because only heavy Oscar talk could convince me to sit through something this unpleasant/brutal. Here's the teaser

Awards Daily Truth, the true story about Mary Mapes (Cate Blanchett) and Dan Rather (Robert Redford) and a story about George W Bush that nearly ended their careers, arrives in October. (I'm actually a bit surprised by this announcement since Cate already has a leading role in the mix this year.) Speaking of release dates...
David Poland resets the field with departures and arrivals. This is the part that interested me most on account of 'you never know'. Some movies always get pushed back and losing two or three of these would be impactful to say the least in the communal speculation. 

My best guess, based on past histories of the directors and companies and/or absence of promo materials is that 2015 loses three of these four: Silence, Concussion, Snowden, and I Saw the Light.


Links: And Alice Faye's Centennial

The Dissolve Emily Blunt is finally revving back up her career. After Sicario she's headlining Bronco Belle
Guardian Ryan Gosling, ever the good sport about internet memes, finally eats his cereal, and a cancer fund is created to memorialize the meme creator
Empire the very busy young actor Will Poulter case as Pennywise in the new  version of Stephen King's "It"
Awards Watch I was the special guest on their latest podcast defending my first wave of predictions, particularly why I got behind Sicario and am hesitant on Carol.

Film Actually 20 most anticipated performances (I keep forgetting about Ben Foster as Lance Armstrong)
In Contention speaking of Foster, he's got a new film Comancheria, just picked up by CBS Films. Think they'll change the title before release? I'm taking bets.
Playbill If you've never seen Broadway darling and sometime TV & film player Kristin Chenoweth in concert, do NOT miss her tour. I've seen her like four times live and she's magic. It starts in August and she's hitting 17 states so see if any shows are near you!
MNPP who wore it best (skin suits edition): The Vision or Robbie Williams? 
The Dissolve has a cute Gremlins filled video about the history of the PG rating.  
Variety the rapping Granny from The Wedding Singer has died at 101 years of age 
Previously TV Joe Reid guests for a RPDR recap of the "prancing queens' episode. good stuff 
/Film Joss Whedon explains that messy Thor in the pool business from Age of Ultron (the more we hear about the making of the movie the more disastrous it sounds from an executive interference level; this can't be a good sign for the movies going forward.) 

It's the Black Widow's World. Marvel Just Doesn't Know It Yet.
Washington Post on "Black Widow's Feminist Heroism" - a great response to the weird outrage criticisms despite her film-rescuing place in those movies
Think Progress on further linked e-mails which show Hollywood's absolute sexism and stupidity about female heroes, they think Elektra and Catwoman are the best that can be done? Yikes!
Pajiba also Jeremy Renner doubles down on his sorry not sorry douchery about calling Black Widow a slut
Polygon would watch ScarJo's Black Widow Romantic Comedy via SNL. (as would I)  

Showtune(s) to go ~ Happy Alice Faye Centennial
When I revisited the Oscar nominated In Old Chicago (1937) a couple of years ago  I was a bit dismissive of Alice Faye, a major 30s film star (who isn't so well remembered today) who played Tyrone Power's conquest.  After more investigation the appeal has become far more obvious and since May 5th is her Centennial you definitely have 5 minutes to give her major voice - that's a memorably warm deep contralto. Here she is in two incarnations as a pre-code bad girl singing about 'Fooling with The Other Woman's Man' in Now I'll Tell (1934) looking like a visual inspiration for Madonna's future Breathless Mahoney in Dick Tracy. And then in a more traditionally romantic Technicolor light in Weekend in Havana (1941) with John Payne (Tyrone Power and then John Payne? lucky girl) singing "Tropical Magic"


Yes No Maybe So? Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation

Someone needs to do a supercut of all the things Tom Cruise has hung from in his career like a daredevil, an action martyr or a human sacrifice: there've been helicopters, cliffs, glass skyscrapers, Scientology campaigns, cables, and now a big jet plane. Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation has a lot to live up to now that the series improbably peaked as late as its fourth installment, Ghost Protocol

After the poster, let's breakdown the trailer with our trademark trifurcation...

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