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Entries in Lea Seydoux (13)


The Manipulative Monarch of "Farewell, My Queen"

We're celebrating Marie Antoinette for a few more days this week. Here's abstew - Editor

The legendary figure of Marie Antoinette has been the subject of gossip and infamy for over 200 years now. Although most scholars agree that all we may think we know about the excessive queen is mostly a misunderstanding. Even the most well-known phrase attributed to her, "Let them eat cake!", has been debunked as never actually been spoken by her. Even in her own time, there were pamphlets spread around France accusing her of infidelities with both men and women. At her trial, she was accused of staging orgies at the Palace of Versailles and even committing incest with her own son. Playing off of these rumors, French director Benoît Jacquot's 2012 film about Marie Antoinette, Farewell, My Queen, based on the novel by Chantal Thomas, invents a lesbian relationship between the Queen and a duchess at court...

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It’s only 'It’s Only the End of the World'

Josh here, reflecting on the backlash against Xavier Dolan now he’s seen It’s Only the End of the World at the Sydney Film Festival

In what must be a true sign of success, Xavier Dolan was booed and savaged by critics at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year when his latest film It’s Only the End of the World premiered. The reaction was swift not just against his film, but against the filmmaker himself. Dolan address this, and reacted strongly to The Playlist which remarked “It's simply impossible to believe that a story this stridently self-pitying could not refer, more or less explicitly, to writer/director Dolan himself… It suggests a level of martyred self-involvement on Dolan's part that is tantamount to a persecution complex”. This was just one of many vicious reactions online and especially on twitter, against the film but then, in turn, against Dolan for defending himself against criticism.

The apparent taboo of a filmmaker reading, and responding to a critic was a major sore point. As though a critic should get the final word. It’s hard here not to recall the brilliant monologue from Ratatouille...

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Best of '15: Red Carpet Beauty

Jose reporting for red carpet duty. One of the most significant things that happened in fashion in 2015, was the end of Raf Simons' short reign at Dior. With that we saw what I like to think was the "theme of the year", a return to form for starlets, and Best Actress Oscar winners, who seemed constrained under the requirements of their contracts. Not that they were crying about getting paid millions to dress in expensive couture, and sell perfumes mind you. Still, it was refreshing to see people like J.Law go back to the All-American goodness she first embodied in that red Calvin Klein dress at the Oscars.

We also saw perennial favorites find new ways to astound us (Cate, Nicole and Diane are indeed the holy trinity for fashion lovers), and usually lackluster people finally find their unique sartorial voice, thanks to the work of magician stylists (thank you for existing, Petra Flannery). I hope you're surprised by some of the inclusions in the list, but overall I hope they manage to put some beauty into your day (even when the dresses in question aren't necessarily "pretty"...)

The 15 Best Looks of '15
continues after the jump 

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Beauty Break: Spectre Red Carpet

What a gorgeous and talented pair of Bond women they are. Oh, and everyone else also looked great in that red carpet too, I guess.


Yes No Maybe So: Spectre

Here's new contributor Kyle Turner to talk Bond, James Bond...

Bond hasn’t had much of a history the last fifty years or so, and by that I mean Bond the character. The Bond films, perhaps up until 2006’s Casino Royale, had been content with a more anthological and informal character illustration. But with the Nolanizatoin of the Bond franchise (aka the Daniel Craig era), we’ve been treated to a revisionist approach to James Bond: history, character, person. That appears to be continuing with the newest film SPECTRE, from Skyfall helmer Sam Mendes, which looks like another pretty, maybe interesting, maybe terrible chapter in 007’s origin story. 

Let's break down the trailer yes no maybe so after the jump...

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Masterpieces: 5 Works of Art That Deserve Their Own Movie

Abstew in the gallery to talk artworld films.

This past week saw the release of not one but two true life films set in the art world. Rather than traditional artist biopics, both films focus instead on the life of a particular painting's subject matter or the history of the painting itself. Woman in Gold (which opened in the top ten despite its limited theater count) stars Helen Mirren as Maria Altmann, a Holocaust survivor. She fought for over a decade in court with the Austrian government to become the rightful owner of Gustav Klimt's Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I. The painting was of her aunt and it was stolen from her family by the Nazis during WWII. The long-delayed Effie Gray revolves around the unhappy wife (Dakota Fanning) of art critic John Ruskin (Greg Wise) in Victorian England. Apparently their marriage was never consummated and Effie became involved with the Pre-Raphaelite painter John Everett Millais (Tom Sturridge) and was the subject of some of his paintings.

Biopics about artists (FridaPollock, Mr. Turner, Lust for Life, the original Moulin Rouge, and many more over the decades) have found favor with the Academy. It will be interesting to see if these new films begin a trend for movies about the backstories of famous paintings, rather than the artist who painted them.

Since Hollywood is always in need of more interesting and diverse source material, here are 5 works of art that would make movies as pretty as a picture... 

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Breaking: Oh Jimmy! Daniel Craig Returns as 007 in "Spectre"

It wouldn't be accurate to call James Bond the mother the father of all franchises since serialized storytelling was with us since the very beginning of the recorded image. Nevertheless it does sometimes feel like James Bond pioneered the art of staying in the game. It maybe even influenced the rebooting craze long before it had a name with its continual cosmetic surgery; can you imagine how expensive it is to make Timothy Dalton look like Pierce Brosnan and then like Daniel Craig?

Daniel Craig is among the sexiest mofos on the planet but perhaps this is why he looks so beat up all the time? Either that or because people have been torturing him onscreen from the very beginning.

Case in point: This is not an image from the new Bond film but from the Cate Blanchett film Elizabeth (1998)

The new Bond film which begins production in 4 days and arrives in theaters on November 2015 is the 24th official entry in the series (though there are a two apocryphal films as well) and will be called Spectre. It's worth noting that this is, like Skyfall, a very short title. The shortest Bond titles (though not running times) since Dr. No (1962) which kicked off the whole series! Sam Smith will be doing the theme song.

Sadly, the casting doesn't seem very imaginative since Christoph Waltz is among the villians (i'm sorry but I'm done with him post Big Eyes. His range is shrinking which is quite an overachievement since he already won two Oscars for the same performance!) 

The cast in order of TFE's current levels of fandom...
Daniel Craig as Bond, James Bond (returning)
Ralph Fiennes as M (returning)
Lea Seydoux as Madeleine Swann (new)
Ben Whishaw as Q (returning)
Naomie Harris as Moneypenny (returning)
Andrew Scott as Denbigh (new)
Monica Bellucci as Lucia Sciarra (new)
David Bautista as Mr Hinx (new)
Rory Kinnear as Tanner (recurring)
Christoph Waltz as Oberhauser (new)

Do you think Lea's AMAZING entrance in Ghost Protocol inspired her future Bond Girl femme fatale role (say yes, that's rhetorical)

Do you see every Bond film or wait for the general cultural response?  Given Skyfall's historic gross and Oscar over-performance (doubling the entire franchises's Oscar tally!) do you think they're in for another zeitgeist hit and awards contender. Or do you think this one is bound to be a bit of a letdown?