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Entries in John Cassavetes (8)

Thursday
Jun142018

Rosemary's Baby Pt 2: This is Really Happening!

Rosemary's Baby print by Jonathan Burton. For sale here.50th Anniversary Three-Part Mini-Series
Occasionally we'll take a movie and baton pass it around the team and really dive in. 

Rosemary's Baby (1968) is 50 years old now but it feels both ancient and fresh. It's always alive when you watch it. Having seeped into the very DNA of both the movies and our nightmares, it deserves a deep dive. In Part One by Seán McGovern we watched as Rosemary (Mia Farrow) and Guy Woodhouse (John Cassavettes) moved into a strange new apartment building, saw a neighbor mysteriously die, and become socially entangled with an intrusive neighbor couple Minnie and Roman Castavet (Ruth Gordon and Sydney Blackmer), who are both eccentrically endearing and very possibly sinister. 44 minutes into the film we can scratch out "very possibly" and just make that sinister. Full stop. We return to Rosemary just as we realize she's been drugged by Minnie's chocolate mousse "mouse" and has begun to dream... - Editor

Part 2 by Jason Adams


44:21 It seems appropriate to jump right in in the middle of a dream about to turn nightmare, for what else is Rosemary's Baby but that?

44:21 So much of this sequence will come back to haunt us later when Rosemary makes her final horrific discovery...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jun122017

Beauty vs Beast: The Men In Rosemary's Life

Jason from MNPP here on another Monday afternoon with another round of our weekly "Beauty vs Beast" series - today happens to be the 49th anniversary of my favorite movie Rosemary's Baby. Roman Polanski's masterpiece (one of his several masterpieces) was dropped from beak of the devil's stork into the world on June 12th 1968, a wailing bundle of joy (with its father's eyes) that became the 8th biggest film of the year, scoring over 33 million at the box office (aka 230 million in 2017 dollars, putting it on par with what Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them made last year) and forever giving pregnant woman something shiny and new to worry themselves about. (All of them witches!)

This being my favorite film we've already devoted one of these columns to it - we faced off the womenfolk with Rosemary (Mia Farrow) taking on Minnie (Ruth Gordon) last fall. Gordon won, same as the Oscars. So this time around let's turn our attentions to their respective partners! There's no time like Right Now for "Sleazy White Men Who Think They Own Women's Reproductive Organs" after all, so I give you Guy Woodhouse (John Cassavetes), star of "Nobody Loves an Albatross" and a world-class creep, and Roman Castavet (Sidney Blackmer), door to door Satan salesman. Choose wisely, your womb will thank you...

PREVIOUSLY We took a quick trip to the Moors last weekend to put poor Jane Eyre through the wringer again but in the end Mia Wasikowska came out on top (and who wouldn't want to come out on top of Michael Fassbender) with 58% of your vote. Said Nick T:

"I'm so happy to cheer for Jane. It's a great performance (yay Mia!), and if Jane won't act as her own hype man then I'll happily do it tor her."

Wednesday
Sep072016

Judy by the Numbers: "Snowflakes"

What on odd year is 1963 in the history of Judy Garland. 1964 marks the last year of Judy Garland's film career, and the boom of Judy's television career. The first of Judy's final two movies reunited Judy Garland with producer Stanley Kramer and actor Burt Lancaster, with whom she'd worked only two years before in Judgment at Nuremburg. By the early 1960s, Kramer was establishing himself as the prestige producer of hard-hitting social issue cinema. A Child Is Waiting, about an institution for developmentally challenged children, was no different.

The Movie: A Child is Waiting (Universal, 1963)
The Songwriter: Marjorie D. Kurtz
The Players: Judy Garland, Burt Lancaster, Gena Rowlands, directed by John Cassavetes

The Story: While the majority of Judy Garland's career was dominated by Technicolor musical extravaganzas, the last few films of her career do signal an attempt at darker, "more serious" work. Surrounded by Method artists like Rowlands, Cassavetes, and (to some degree) Lancaster, Judy clearly embraced a more fluid, less "Studio" form of acting. Her improvisation with the students shows this transition. This scene, not a "musical number" in the conventional sense, sees Judy attempting to teach a song to her students through many tactics - banging on the piano, half-quiet mumbling, sing-shouting, etc - while playing a range of tensions in the scene, from timidity to irritation to joy when they start to get it right. It is a subtle musical performance.

Most of the drama in A Child Is Waiting happened behind the scenes between Kramer and Cassavetes, but ultimately no battles or cute children could save the film. It lost $2 million among mixed reviews, a frustrating end to an artistic leap on Judy's part.

Wednesday
Aug172016

1984: John Cassavetes' Farewell "Love Streams"

by Bill Curran

The story of an irredeemably chaotic, forever ailed pair of siblings—Robert (John Cassavetes), a louche, bestselling (but never working) author and alcoholic, and Sarah (Gena Rowlands), his troubled, manic sister just divorced and now separated from her daughter—Love Streams doesn’t care much for a Story, capital “S”.  There is no dissolution or sea change in Cassavetes’ swan song*. If one of the chief pleasures of any good narrative is the suggestion of lives lived before and after the story itself, it’s striking to note that, unlike previous Cassavetes works like Faces and A Woman Under the Influence (with their forever altering moments), Love Streams exists on a continuum. We know Robert and Sarah will never really change. And there is a poignant resignation in realizing at the film’s end, as a thunderstorm pounds the windowpanes of Robert’s home and Sarah’s new companion’s car, that we’ve witnessed only a beautiful stepping stone in their zigzagging roads to nowhere.


Instead, the film achieves a dreamlike intensity, moment to moment, by giving free reign to Robert and Sarah’s thoughts and associations...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Feb042012

Link on a Hot Tin Roof

Movie|Line Posters for Jean Dujardin's latest film, the sex comedy Les Infidels, have been deemed too racy for France. For France? Really? This surprises me.
Guardian has a funny piece on blaming Twilight for everything but particularly the explosion of supernatural characters. Saturation point!
Coming Soon I am really scared of this new photo of Emma Stone from The Amazing Spider-Man. Emma Stone is gorgeous and only 23 years old. She doesn't need photoshopping and definitely not photoshopping that makes her look like a CGI creation! 

In Contention wonders if it might be Brad Pitt's year after all. STOP TRYING TO GET MY HOPES UP.
IndieWire sexually explicit Serbian drama Klip wins big in Rotterdam
Awards Daily When Jessica Chastain met Meryl Streep. 
Washington Blade has a good piece on Madonna reemerging in the Lady Gaga era and what it all means. I love that Matthew Rettemund calls it "homosexual civil war" but Matt and I both agree it's silly. There's no rule that says you can only enjoy one pop diva at a time. I certainly have never been monogamous with my actressexuality and I never will be. Boring!

Finally, RIP to Ben Gazzara, the original "Brick" from Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Paul Newman took over his part for the movie version but Gazzara had an enduring career in all three Actors Playgrounds: film, stage and television. On the movie side he was part of the winning cast of Anatomy of a Murder (pictured right) but he'll most likely be rememberd as a key star in John Cassavettes repertory of actors. I always love reading Sheila O' Malley's pieces on stars who have passed on. Here's a small taste...

He was in his 40s when he found himself on the cutting edge of the independent film scene in America. He wasn’t a young, hungry guy. He was middle-aged. Married. With a kid. They all were married, with kids. It wasn’t a hipster sensibility, or a Bohemian type of “let’s make a movie with my friends” kind of thing. They were artists. Who understood compromise, they all had had extensive careers, but nothing compared to the roles that Cassavetes gave them. Gazzara had already been around forever. He had worked with Hitchcock, for God’s sake. And Kazan. So to take that risk … to sit in the theatre watching Cassavetes’ Faces and admitting that he felt jealousy. Jealousy of Cassavetes’ talent, and also – an ambition: I must work with that guy."

And as always the Daily Notebook has a collection of quotes and obits.

Tuesday
Nov012011

The Linkers Grimm

MUBI James Benning is experimenting with John Cassavetes Faces (1968) for a "remake" installation.
Antenna has valid thoughtful concerns about both of the new fantasy series on TV, Grimm and Once Upon a Time. Many good points are raised but I can't take them completely seriously since Once Upon a Time is one of the single gawdiest and most ham-fisted things mine eyes have ever witnessed whereas Grimm was surprisingly rich in potential and beautifully made (yummy production design) and they imply that Once has more potential? Yikes.

"greens greens and nothing but greens..." Grimm's are alive. Once but dead props.

Towleroad cutest thing Zac Efron has ever done? He did Halloween as a Reno 911 officer
Go Fug Yourself Heidi Klum went as a cadaver! Heidi Klum is the most awesome Halloween party ever. Every single year she turns it out.

Dark Eye Socket this is really cool: 5 Scary Movie Masks in Non-Scary Movies
Ultra Culture the shortest review you will ever read of Tower Heist and also probably the best one; it's a Venn Diagram!
Movie|Line Naomi Watts to star in the most depressing movie indie ever. I guess she didn't read our Red Carpet Convo with Guy Lodge when we worried for the perpetual worry lines of her career.

‪Nathaniel: Naomi most certainly needs to shake off all the dour miserabilism. People have been filming her with grimy 'THIS IS DEPRESSING!' lighting for so long that I have no idea what she'd look like if she was having fun‬!
‪Guy: Well, at least Watts is coming up in J. Edgar. A Clint Eastwood movie is just the kind of fun frisky change of pace she needs.

Socialite Life Leonardo DiCaprio looking dapper on the set of The Great Gatsby. This will possibly be just what he needs after all the aging prosthetics of J. Edgar.
Hollywood Reporter interviews Michael Fassbender about his very sexual year with Cronenberg and McQueen
Cinema Blend Hilary Swank has fired most of her management team over the scandal that erupted when she attended (paid) that birthday party for the Chechnyan President.
South Asian Film Festival, about to kick off here in New York, will open with the  Oscar submission Abu, Son of Adam.
Broadway World Julie Andrews honored tonight in NYC
Threadless "one cookie to rule them all" [see pic below] LOL. I had to share since we were just talking about The Lord of the Rings here.

"cookie ringwraith" © rnlynam

Oscar in Brief
Today is the due date for all Animated Feature contenders to submit their paperwork for the Academy. So soon we'll know just how many nominees we'll get in this category which can range anywhere from 2 to 5 nominees depending on the number of submission. Meanwhile, The Wrap and In Contention both have new pieces up on the Academy's Best Foreign Language Film category. More from us here soon as we screen more entries ourselves.

Finally...  This commerical for The Immortals which I've never seen --and I've seen plenty of advertising for it -- it can't be real can it?

If so, hats off. Tellin' it like it is. I agree with everything Rich at FourFour says "Fucking Poetry"