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Entries in Patty Clarkson (9)

Saturday
Sep202014

Review: The Maze Runner

This review originally appeared in an abridged version in Nathaniel's column at Towleroad. It is reprinted here with their permission for your reading pleasure... or displeasure depending on how you feel about The Maze Runner. 

Dylan O'Brien stars in Maze Runner

The last thing anyone will ever enjoy about The Maze Runner, should they be so lucky as to enjoy it, is a review describing the finer points of its narrative. Let if suffice to say that Stiles from Teen Wolf wakes up in a large glade surrounded by a huge stone maze. It is not a metaphor for Dylan O' Brien's navigation of sudden stardom. The only inhabitants of this sealed environment are a group of similarly aged boys, none of whom are frequently shirtless werewolves, dammit.

Why are they there?

Who put them there?

Can they ever escape?

What’s different about Dylan O’Brien besides the largest paycheck?

Will there be a sequel?

The movie shall answer all of these questions in 113 minutes! And many more. In fact The Maze Runner so loves to ask and answer questions, that it does so in literally every scene rivalling Inception in sheer expository percentages of dialogue uttered.

Since the movie loves to answer, here's 12 more questions if you click to enter the maze

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Sep162014

An Evening With Patty! (Also "Maze Runner," Something Something?)

Patty Clarkson last night in NYCLast night I attended Teen Vogue's Maze Runner screening and though I'll be writing it up for my gig at Towleroad later this week, I must share with you, my devout fellow actressexuals and the only ones who will understand, that I made the night all about Patricia Clarkson.

I didn't even realize she was in the movie until she was there at the reception and I was powerless to stop myself from beelining straight toward her while the other guests of the studio and fans (who presumably won a contest or something?) spent the evening squealing about Dylan O'Brien who plays "Xander" excuse me... "Stiles" on Teen Wolf, the only non-supernatural teen on that very popular show, now officially run by dadaists. (Yes, I still watch it but it doesn't make a lick of sense anymore... not just from episode to episode but within something as easy to manage as a one hour block! It's like they're just making it up as they film. Each scene!).

I've met the great actress twice before at events and she is an absolute delight one-on-one, super funny, gorgeous, and above-all charismatic, kind of like her 1950's social butterfly "Elle" from Far From Heaven (2002) without, you know, the nasty betrayals and the constant subtly racist/anti-semitic/homophobic shade-throwing. She joked about wishing her latest director was 20+ years older so she could date him ("is your father single?" LOL) and was still obviously high off the reception of her starring role in Learning To Drive in which she takes driving lessons from Ben Kingsley. In a surprise turn of events that two-hander nearly nabbed the People's Choice Award from The Imitation Game in Toronto as first runner up. The film hasn't been picked up yet that I'm aware of but given the crowd-pleasing response at the festival (sadly, I was not part of that crowd as it slips through the cracks of my 25 screenings) someone really ought to. I mean, David Poland is smart about these things.

 

 



Is Hollywood listening?

P.S. Can we get Patty back in key supporting roles in prestige pieces where she once regularly cropped up, please? It's a real shame she only has one Oscar nomination to her name, despite deserving at least three (High Art, Far From Heaven, Dogville).

 

 

Sunday
Aug032014

Linker by the Dozen

Salon talks to Patricia Clarkson about her career and why she never married or had kids
Pajiba 25 best triple exclamation point quotes from (recent) movie history. I added the (recent) because you know how people do with lists. It's always our lifetimes + one classic. But it's a fun list
Daily Telegraph interviews actress Rachel Griffiths on juggling career and family. "You can't win" she says
Antagony & Ecstasy remembers Eyes Wide Shut and wonders what would have happened if Stanley Kubrick had had more time with it


Gawker Bill Murray doing voicework for Jungle Book as "Baloo"
Film Stage first images from Rosewater, Jon Stewart's directorial debut
Towleroad a review of The Way He Looks. So bummed I missed this Brazilian romance at NewFest. Keep hearing good things
/Film Harry Shum Jr will co-star in the as yet untitled Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon sequel (it's based on the book Iron Knight Silver Vase but I'd be VERY surprised if they kept that title). So glad he found a post-Glee role. Love him.
Awards Circuit polled their whole staff on '10 greatest performances'... but i don't do 100s of click throughs to see all the lists so someone tell me who has the best taste ;)

super world
Comics Alliance on the importance of Superman's forelock curl
Variety looking back at Marvel's Phase 1 and Phase 2
Kate Mara Fantastic Four is a wrap. Cute photo of the cast 

...and finally. 8 Bit Video attacks The Avengers. These things are so cute but I long for them to do something less expected than a blockbuster action movie. You know?

 

I apologize in advance for this but why does my brain always want such incongruous things as 8 Bit Far From Heaven: Help Cathy retrieve her flying scarf. Find Cathy's philandering gay husband. Train is about to depart. Or 8 Bit 12 Yea-- no, too soon. 8 Bit Black Swan Slam your psycho mother's fingers in the door for points. Pirouette until you transform into a bird. Kill your doppelganger.   8 Bit The Hours: Think you can buy the flowers yourself? Load your pockets with stones. How long can you stay underwater? Make a birthday cake while a need child looks on. GO!

Thursday
Apr242014

Supporting Smackdown '03: Holly, Marcia, Patty, Renée & Shohreh

For the latest edition of StinkyLulu's Supporting Actress Smackdown -- which was delayed for reasons I won't bore you with again --  Stinky and I welcome you to a much-discussed Oscar contest, ten years back. This was not, as we've rediscovered, a particularly strong vintage despite a certain nostalgic pull for any storied shortlist that combines five very distinct performers. The truth of it is that most of 2003's acting races were messy affairs with little precursor agreement or too much of it. Further complicating matters was a mix of various stages of career momentum, a frontrunning film without any acting bids (Return of the King), and that semi-annual deadly combo that always mucks with Academy discernment: weak prestige pieces and much of the best work occuring in genres Oscar doesn't care for. The Best Actress race, for example, was historic but totally odd and disatisfying, and Best Supporting Actress coalesced around these five players...

THE NOMINEES


Shohreh Aghdashloo, a "discovery" at 51 though she was already famous in Iran, and previously snubbed character actress sensation Patricia Clarkson were the first timers. Oscar winners Marcia Gay Harden and Holly Hunter were also included for anchoring gritty dramas as desperately confused mothers. And finally Renée Zellweger, the eventual winner, on her third consecutive nomination but her first for a drama after two lead nominations for popular comedies. (All legitimately supporting roles. That doesn't happen over a whole supporting field anymore)

You know who won the Oscar but who will win the Smackdown? Read on...

THIS MONTH'S PANELISTS

Nick Davis, Guy Lodge, Joe Reid, Nathaniel R, Tim Robey, Stinkylulu and You (we tabulate reader votes as well and quotes from your ballots appear).

2003
SUPPORTING ACTRESS SMACKDOWN

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Apr082014

Top Ten: Lars Von Trier's Actors

Jose here with your weekly top ten.

 

Visionary. Lunatic. Nazi. Enfant terrible. Misogynist. Genius. Poseur.

Lars Von Trier is called so many things that we often forget that he's a terrific director of actors. With his strange sense of humor and world views, his films are often as alienating as they are enlightening, but actors seem to die to work for him. He's led three of his actresses to wins at the Cannes Film Festival and has injected new life into the careers of actors like Kirsten Dunst, Willem Dafoe and now Uma Thurman. Whether you're a fan of his films or not, his contributions to directing actors are incomparable. Now that both of his Nymphomaniac volumes are out in theaters (reviewed), it's a great time to look back

Ten Best Performance in Lars von Trier Films
(after the jump)

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jan062014

Oscar's One Hit Wonders or When Bad Nominations Happen to Good Actors

[Here's abstew to talk about a semi-annual Oscar tradition. Even if you disagree with the picks you surely recognize the curious problem. Will any of 2013's future nominees qualify for this list? -Editor]

When it comes to acting nominations, let's face it, not everyone can be Meryl Streep (17 nominations and counting). And with only 20 acting nominations to hand out each year, there's always going to be people left out. So many factors affect nominations: how well the actor is liked in the industry, whether they've been nominated (or won) before, how visible they've been promoting the movie, whether or not it's their "time". Sometimes the actual performance doesn't weigh in as heavily as it should.

Which is why the Academy gives something I like to call the "Oh, sorry we didn't nominate you for that great movie you were in a couple years ago, but let's call it even by nominating you for this instead" nomination. For many actors their body of work greatly out-weighs the single nomination. (For purposes of this list, I'm focusing only on actors who've received their nomination in the past 25 years or so but this has been happening since the beginning of (Oscar's) time.)

With so many greats yet to receive a nomination, perhaps we should be grateful that the following actors can precede their name with "Academy Award Nominee", but knowing how much better they are than this single nomination implies... 

Single Nomination: Best Actress, Catherine Deneuve Indochine (1992)

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Nov302013

Introducing... Five Nominees 2003

For the buildup to this  year's Oscar race we thought it would be fun to revive StinkyLulu's Supporting Actress Smackdown and so far it's gone just beautifully. This month we're hitting the 2003 lineup for its 10th anniversary. Unfortunately I have to announce a small delay: The Smackdown will now air on Thursday, December 5th at Noon EST instead of, well, right now.

But in its place our new Smackdown tradition which we keep meaning to turn into a regular non-Smackdown series. "Introducing..." in which we remember our first glimpse of key movie characters. You've met this month's panel but these events now include an extra panelist: You (the collective you) so feel free to send in your ballots (by tomorrow at the latest) if you'd like your vote to be counted. Here's how you do that.

Without further ado...

INTRODUCING... (in the order of how soon they appear in their films)

[no dialogue]

Shohreh Aghdashloo as "Nadi" in House of Sand and Fog
Arrival: 1½ minutes into the 126 minute running time, preceded only by Fog (and Jennifer Connelly) and Sand: She's reflected in the water in the opening credits and then glimpsed frolicking with her children on the beach, before a terrible visual omen strikes: trees felled nearby. Subtle!

I'm ready.

Holly Hunter as "Melanie Freeland" in Thirteen
Arrival: 3 minutes into the 100 minute running time. She stamps out a cigarette. Note the smart girly girl styling -- kudos to the makeup and costume team on this movie -- you don't even know she's not a teenager until the camera pans up. 

[no dialogue]

Patricia Clarkson as "Joy Burns" in Pieces of April
Arrival: 4 minutes into the 80 minute running time. While her family frantically searches for her, she's found waiting in the care for their Thanksgiving road trip. 

Where have you been? It's 3 AM."

Marcia Gay Harden as "Celeste Boyle" in Mystic River
Arrival: 16 minutes into the 138 minute running time. She's looking in on her sleeping child when her husband returns home with (gasp) what is that? Blood! on his hands!!! With Marcia's arrival the plot arrives to mingle with the foreshadowing prologue and completed character survey. 

Those cows want milkin'. If that letter ain't urgent then cows is, is what I'm sayin'. 

Renée Zellweger as "Ruby" in Cold Mountain
Arrival: 50 minutes into the 154 minute running time. And boy is the director (and the Zeéeeee) marking it. She steps into the frame like it's a proscenium, her face hidden by a huge hat as she turns from side to side. Cows even moo to introduce her and she sighs loudly before barking out her first line at Ada (Nicole Kidman) who is lost in her papers on the porch.

*

Did you know you were in for something special when these actors came into frame?