Hello everyone, Manuel here to recap Looking's newest episodes. We took a little break last weekend since it was the Holy Night of Awards (may this be your daily reminder that Julianne Moore has an Oscar!) and so we’re back this week with two brand new episodes. And boy were they good! I’m actually happy I can talk about these two episodes in tandem. One a comedic showcase the other a dramatic detour, one a sprawling ensemble set-piece, the other an almost bottle-episode character-driven piece, they exemplify the strong work Haigh & co. have been doing this season.
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Straight from the Oscar stage to the hair and makeup room...
In case you've forgotten The Danish Girl, which had a difficult development period going through different stars and directors (it went through, I kid you not, FIVE Oscar winning actresses before and three directors) is coming out late this year though we had originally been told 2016. That's presumably to give Eddie Redmayne a chance at back-to-back Oscars (I know it's so gross to mention this already. It can't be helped!). The biopic is from Tom Hooper (The King's Speech and Les Miserables) and is the story of transgender Einar Wegener and her transition and surgery to become Lili Elbe "The Danish Girl" with the encouragement of her then wife Gerda. Alicia Vikander, the wonderful Swedish actress from Anna Karenina and A Royal Affair, is playing Gerda so watch for her in Best Supporting Actress. NooooOOOoooooooooo Oscar talk. It can't be helped.
Read news about a release date, almost tweeted something about the 2016 Oscars. Reminded myself that this is a disease. One day at a time.— Mark Harris (@MarkHarrisNYC) February 24, 2015
So let's see it's another biopic about a complicated marriage where the wife has to stand by her man who becomes not what she expected him to be after she falls in love with him? Way to mix it up, Eddie Redmayne! I kid I kid. I hope it's good and I hope Eddie is more sensitive and better at handling the difficult press that comes with this sort of thing (especially now that we have real trans actors playing trans roles on TV) than Jared Leto was. The film is really piling on the gorgeousness because Eddie & Alicia's co-stars are Amber Heard, Ben Whishaw and Matthias Schoenaerts. Costumes are by the superb Paco Delgado who was Oscar nominated for Les Miz and also did genius work on Blancanieves and fun subversive stuff for Pedro Almodóvar a couple of times.
Manuel here to offer this week's Looking recap filtered through a decidedly ranty diatribe on LGBT representation.
I was looking for glimpses of the city that had formed me. I didn’t hold out hope that a Hollywood product would show me anything I recognized beyond a consumer gay culture satisfied with glossy representations as a sign of progress. - Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore
I couldn't let this week's recap go by without addressing that New Inquiry piece published last week about Looking which opens with a Rent anecdote and that quote above.
Sycamore's framing tells us everything about what I've elsewhere called "the burden of representation"; notice that every sentence starts with an authoritative "I" that is supposed to function as both a composite of those "I"s that Looking and the homonormative gay industrial complex displaces but which nevertheless points us to an individuality that would (and does) refuse an acknowledgement from such a representational vantage point. There is no hope that mainstream representations would present anything Sycamore would recognize; this is both the foundational claim and foregone conclusion of the piece. [More...]
Gurus of Gold rank the Best Pictures and possible surprises with a handful of days of voting left
Playbill At Roundabout Theater's Spring Gala "There is Nothing Like a Dame" a who's who of awesome Broadway stars will honor Helen Mirren
Playlist filmmakers who disowned their movies. I didn't know the hilarious Screenplay Oscar trivia situation with Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes (1984) , a movie I really loved as a kid
New York Times America's Sweetheart Tom Hanks writes an ode to the value of community colleges.
Henry Cavill's Site interviews the actor's stunt man Alainn Moussi who is getting his own lead role in the Kickboxer remake
AV Club HBO's brilliant comedy about nurses in an elderly care ward Getting On is getting one more very short season and then its bye-bye.
Towleroad Laverne Cox cast in a CBS legal drama pilot Doubt as a trans lawyer. Too bad its not the lead role. That'd really be something.
Cinesnark has a good review of the most recent episode of Agent Carter which has proven itself as a fast, kicky, well acted and really fine TV show. I kinda love it. Agents of SHIELD has improved over its run but Carter's short run has only emphasized how weak it still is; I'm sad it's coming back because that mean Carter is over!
This Week's Must Read
Tilda Swinton gave a glorious wise speech about art and cinema and inspiration at the Rothko Chapel. Here's the full transcript and I really urge you to read it.
It occurs to me on a regular basis that the cinema carries the potential to be perhaps the most human of all gestures in art: the invitation to place ourselves, under the intimate cover of darkness, into another person's shoes, behind another set of eyes, into another's consciousness. The ultimate compassion machine, the empathy enging.
Here is the darkness.
Here comes the light.
Beautiful. Just beautiful, don't you think?
Today's 'What Does This Word Mean?' Curiousity
Out revealed their 100 Most Eligible Bachelors list and it's wonderful to swipe through it realizing how many out actors we have now (I knew that once we had a few brave ones people would calm down about it and the floodgates would open) though the list is hardly actors-only. Thankfully the list has plentiful ethnic, age, and national diversity.
But the list is not without controversy because not all of the men are "Out" as it were like Ronan Farrow for example or the actor Jussie Smollett (who plays the gay son on Empire and is the brother of Jurnee Smollett from Friday Night Lights & True Blood). There might be other examples. I hadn't heard that the model Jon Kortajarena was gay either but maybe I just missed that somewhere. Most hilarious is their inclusion of famously NOT out Hobbit actors Luke Evans (Dracula Untold) who has a long history of being back in the closet which My New Plaid Pants lampoons constantly and Lee Pace who has a long history of not being out and recently denying the everyone-assumes Elf-Dwarf love affair with co-star Richard Armitage.
Manuel here, braving a sick day bringing you a short and sweet recap from this week's SanFran shenanigans. Even if this week’s episode of Looking hadn’t ended with one of my favorite college-throwback songs I overplayed during many a heartbreak (that entire EP is to die for!), “Looking Down the Road” would have easily become my favorite season 2 episode so far. I wish I weren't so indisposed otherwise I rattle off an endless valentine to this episode which saw itself resetting (or re-directing) our three main leads lives with Dom and Lynn's relationship seemingly at an end, Kevin and Patrick's affair finally buckling under its own platonic weight and Agustin landing a job alongside Eddie at the trans center.