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Entries in Mommie Dearest (10)

Saturday
Mar112017

Feud: Bette and Joan. "Pilot"

by Nathaniel R

The title sequence for Feud, really couldn't be better. The Saul Bass inspired graphics cut-outs act out both the iconic beats in hagsploitation classic Whatever Happened to Baby Jane (1962) and Joan Crawford and Bette Davis's own rivalry as stars while alluding to their embattled natures (the hearts as tears is a particular fine move) within Hollywood where both had been wildly successful but not without their backs up and claws out, as it were.

When the action kicks off in Feud though we're in 1961 and both were now "has been" at least in terms of A list leading lady roles at 55 (Crawford) and 53 (Davis). Feud: Bette and Joan casts much older actresses to play them with Jessica Lange (67) and Susan Sarandon (70) which is maybe the most unintentionally positive takeaway of the show; it takes much longer to be considered "old" in Hollywood now!

Click to read more ...

Friday
Aug052016

Method Linking

The Matinee on the trouble with "classics" and drawing timelines in the sand
Kenneth in the (212) the Mommie Dearest mansion is on the market
The Stake on why blockbuster franchises are all boring now. Even the good ones
National Post pop culture power rankings best and worst in method acting from Daniel Day Lewis to Jared Leto
Uproxx movies have sucked this summer - well, the big ones have. Lots of goodies in limited release 

MNPP * NSFW* Orlando Bloom made the internet all sweaty with his nude paddleboarding adventure 
MNPP I love the "Siri Says" series Jason does. She picks a number, he delivers his favorite films from that year. 
Variety Maya Rudolph to co-star in Melissa McCarthy's Life of the Party (2018)
The Tracking Board Hollywood is planning to remake Mexico's Miss Bala (sigh). Good luck finding a lead to match Stephanie Sigman in the 2011 original
Coming Soon Angelina Jolie has opted not to take the lead role in Murder on the Orient Express. Charlize Theron is the new possibility. And ICYMI...
TFE... we held a Cast This about the other roles in that remake recently.
Film Stage new Antonio Banderas movie is coming called Finding Altamira. I hadn't heard of this but it's directed by Hugh Hudson who I've suddenly realized is still alive. He hasn't made a movie in 16 years. I was just watching his Greystoke movie the other day
AV Club Antonio Sabato Jr hilarious thinks his career is over because of his support of Trump. Oh babe, it's been over for a long time. That's like blaming Obama for the death of Captain Khan who died four years before he was in offic-- oh wait.
Esquire In case you had forgotten that Clint Eastwood is an old guard conservative/misogynist, they have a new interview he does in tandem with his son Scott in which he uses "pussy" as a pejorative, disses Hillary and Obama, and tries that old chestnust "both sides" argument about Trump's behavior. Nope. Sorry Clint. Only one party tries to motivate voters with bigotry. (He also talks movies and at least he loves Sunset Blvd so he's not 100% a terrible person.)
Women and Hollywood Ava Duvernay to become the first black woman to helm a $100 million budgeted film with A Wrinkle in Time - this is news because she's quite successful already and men with a lot less success have been handed blockbuster budgets often. Crossing our fingers that it's a financial and artistic success! 

Dunkirk Teaser
Here's the very quick new tease for Christopher Nolan's Dunkirk which seems certain to net him that Best Director nomination that's eluded him so long if it's any good at all, it being a WW II movie and him being "overdue" and such. And he knows how to direct spectacle films after all.

Off Cinema
Buzz Feed "every time President Obama lost his chill around kids" if you need something adorable to look at
The Guardian Leonardo DiCaprio is "with her". He's hosting a $33,400 a plate fundraiser
The Daily Good Yes the media does play favorites in politics, but as this study shows, it isn't the people complaining about it who are getting the unfavorable treatment 

Monday
Apr062015

Beauty vs Beast: Wet Hot American Rudd

Jason from MNPP here with this week's "Beauty vs Beast" -- you know who's been in love with Paul Rudd for twenty years? This guy's been in love with Paul Rudd for twenty years. Almost exactly - Clueless came out in July of 1995 and I think it's safe to say that 95% of everyone who saw Clueless in theaters fell in love with Paul Rudd that summer twenty summers ago. Well today is Paul's 46th birthday and here on the verge of what's probably his biggest role ever (a literally little superhero movie called Ant-Man) it seems a good time to look back...

... to something small, super small, that changed the course of his career. Even though Wet Hot American Summer wasn't a hit when it came out in 2001 I can still remember it being a topic of conversation, how everybody was a bit surprised at how funny Rudd was in it. He'd done light romantic comedies a la Clueless before but his work in WHAS was diffrent - raunchy, and going-for-broke. And as the Apatow School of Comedy took over the decade, Rudd slipped himself right into the zeitgeist.

As for Wet Hot it was a cult movie pretty much immediately - I've certainly been banging the drum for it from my microscopic corner of the internet for a good long while now, and that dedication's been rewarded with Netflix's upcoming Wet Hot series, which will premiere on the streaming service on July 17th (aka two days before the 20th anniversary of Clueless. Weird right?)

As for this week's "Beauty vs Beast," I'm focusing in on a single scene in the 2001 film (one I've probably re-enacted to my boyfriend's chagrin far too many times when I'm asked to pick up some mess I've made) in order to face off two of my favorite characters in the movie - in the left-hand corner we've got Andy (Rudd), the Camp's bad boy, and in the right-hand we've got Beth (Janeane Garofalo) the responsible-ish Camp Director.

Whose team are you on?

PREVIOUSLY As Nathaniel noted in Friday's edition of April Showers last week was ALL about Mommie Dearest, and this contest was no different - and it wasn't Mommie's first time at the rodeo, and it showed. at 80% Joan Crawford (Faye Dunaway) trounced the competition like... well like those rosh buses, and that talcum powder, and Christina herself. Although it was par who made the most sense:

"Team Christopher! [mostly for having the sense to stay out of this mess until the end]"

Friday
Apr032015

April Showers: Joan Crawford & "The Man Who Seduced Hollywood"

waterworks, some weeknights at 11

The danger of the "Best Shot" series is that sometimes the film consumes me for a whole week when I need to be focusing on other articles and behind the scenes duties (Oscar Prediction Charts coming soon!) But let's wash Mommie Dearest (1981) out of our systems with one last post by way of kicking off April Showers, our annual misadventure of gawking at shower scenes.

Mommie Dearest does practically begin with one. And not just any shower scene. It's funny. It's weird. It's glamorous. It's expensive. It's monogrammed. It turns wildly inappropriate during the dismount! 

Surrender to Joan's pink after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Apr012015

Best Shot Visual Index: Mommie Dearest (1981)

For our April Fools tradition of celebrating 'bad movies we love' (last year it was Can't Stop the Music) we opted for Frank Perry's ill-fated but extremely memorable Mommie Dearest (1981). The film, which was quickly adapted from Christina Crawford's 1978 best-selling memoir (published just a year after her famous mother's death), starred Faye Dunaway as the great movie star and Mara Hobel and Diana Scarwid as Christina, Steve Forrest as Crawford's longtime boyfriend Gregg Savitt and Rutanya Alda as Crawford's loyal assistant Carol Ann. The book was controversial in its day, with many stars defending their former co-star but the stories stuck in the public consciousness and the movie lives on in infamy. It was greeted with much derision, winning multiple Razzies (the entire principle cast just listed was nominated in their individual acting categories) but Dunaway's work, oft-quoted and beloved to this day in certain communites (ahem), has always had its share of valiant defenders.

Paul Lohmannn (Nashville, High Anxiety) was the director of photography and here are the films most memorable or "best" shots, according to participants around the web.

MOMMIE DEAREST BEST SHOTS
13 images chosen by 14 blogs
Click on the images to read the corresponding articles 

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Apr012015

What Becomes a Legend Most? On "Mommie Dearest"

Hit Me With Your Best Shot: Mommie Dearest (1981)
Directed by Frank Perry. Cinematography by Paul Lohmann (who also shot Robert Altman's Nashville!)

As a practicing film buff ever since adolescence I've spent a lot of time thinking about two different questions. The first, what is it that makes some stars last in the public imagination beyond their own lifetimes while other giants fade? The second, entirely unrelated, what is the difference between a great movie and a terrible movie, and by extension this -- are 'bad movies we love' ever truly terrible or are they actually funhouse mirrors of greatness, very nearly the same but for the random comic distortions?

In Mommie Dearest (1981), the infamous movie based on an infamous tell-all about an infamous movie star -- that's a lot of infamy -- these questions collide...

Click to read more ...