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Entries in P.T. Anderson (13)

Saturday
Jan042014

Amir's Most Anticipated, 2014

Amir here, taking a break from the relentless torrent of lists, think pieces and twitter catfights about everything 2013 to look ahead at the new year.

Making a list of the year’s most anticipated films is always a risky task and there’s little payoff in raising one’s expectations of any film. Predictably so, there isn’t always overlap between what we anticipate and what we actually like when the final product materializes on the screen, but that’s the beauty of the whole thing. There will undoubtedly be disappointments, but in their stead, there will also be pleasant surprises. Of the films that shaped my lineup last year, only three ended up among my top 25 films of the year, but at this moment a year ago, I hadn’t even heard of something like Museum Hours or The Broken Circle Breakdown.

10 Noah (Darren Aronofsky)
Because: the director. The director, I say! The trailer for this biblical epic was mostly disappointing. The CGI looked unconvincing, the dialogue was gratingly cheesy and, as a non-religious man, I find the basic premise of this oft-told story laughable. But who am I kidding? I’m still going to be there on opening day. Darren Aronofsky has (almost) never disappointed and something tells me he’ll find an interesting angle on the most famous of all tales. Plus, I have a fondness for Russell Crowe few can match.

Nine more possible great ones after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Feb202013

Jesse Unleashed. And Other Links

i09 the best critical responses to Safe Haven's batsh*t ending (spoilers, obviously)
Natasha VC the Boogie Nights premiere photos are debilitating. (amen)
Cinematic Corner expresses disatisfaction with The Master. I think the qualms expressed here are very imply put the problem a lot of people have with the second act of Paul Thomas Anderson's career. I wonder if he'll change again?
Awards Daily salutes the hard working Oscar publicists as ballots close
MNPP Judy Garland's A Star is Born even wins over JA! She's just brilliant in that film. One of the worst Oscar losses ever. 

Coming Soon on a new Bruce Lee biopic in the works. I read a few articles on this last night and not one of them mentioned that there already is a Bruce Lee biopic, Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story which came out in the 90s and starred the hotness that was Jason Scott Lee (no relation)
Playbill Les Misérables will be returning to Broadway in 2014, just 11 years since the original long running show closed. Meanwhile the show has never closed in London and has now been playing for 27 years
Jesse Williams the actor (the hottie from Cabin in the Woods) doesn't pull punches detailing his issues with Django Unchained's treatment of race and slavery
Advocate Kelly McGillis will reminisce about Top Gun generically but she won't talk about Jodie Foster's coming out!
Lainey Gossip checks in with the pre-Oscar gingers Jessica Chastain & Nicole Kidman
In Contention looks at Sound Mixing which I personally think is terrifically hard to predict this year 

Finally... if you believe that math can predict the Oscars check out Ben's Oscar Forecast. He's a Harvard student who's trying to predict them with formulas. He's predicting the usual suspects that have been winning everything for acting but for best director... Ang Lee (!?!)

Saturday
Nov242012

P.T. Anderson on "The Master" & An Errant Oscar Thought

An hour long conversation about his divisive movie. Sometimes you have to hear it from the filmmaker's mouth.

Somewhat off topic now...

Occasionally with the great filmmakers it feels unseemly to bring up the great compromise of Oscar. Anderson is probably too much of an artist to care too deeply about golden idols but I do wonder -- tis the season -- if The Master can hold on to any Academy plays or if the year is just getting too crowded with traditional but very satisfying entertainments (Lincoln, Les Miz, Argo) for any of the "difficult" s (The Master, Amour, Anna Karenina, maybe even Beasts of the Southern Wild) to squeeze into the major categories.

What say you?

P.S. In case you missed it, my thoughts on The Master

Wednesday
Sep262012

Team Experience: The Master

I'm out and about again (finally!) so my greedy eyeballs will be on The Master soon. I challenged Team Experience to describe the film in three words since so many critics can't even settle on what it's even about (I'm avoiding reviews but the non-consensus as to meaning is out there).

Four brave souls took me up on the challenge...

Matt Zurcher writes:

Fevered heart need.
The intensity of The Master is impossible to understate. The style itself is unhinged -- crazy, even. The characters are bloated visions of Freudian extremes. The Master is filmmaking of the highest order, yes. But it's also cinema that works on its own terms, so full of cocky flair and delightful self-indulgence that the audience has no choice but to follow it wherever it wants to go. Anderson's fable can seem alienating or disorganized on first viewing, but a second reveals the director's compassion. Joaquin Phoenix's face is a shattered one, but his tears are so heartbreakingly believable. The passion and need that these two men feel for each other begs to be known. And in all the intellectualization of this film that we're going to see, let us remember that it's really just about two people who need each other and who love each other. It's the best love story I've seen since Punch-Drunk Love.

You can read Matt's full review here.

Beau McCoy writes:

 

Opaque Rabid Jazz
"The Master" makes "Cosmopolis" look as accessible as a Spielberg film. Purposely distant and muddled; what are we watching and why? Ferocity abounds in its many forms and incarnations. Moves like a jazz solo; we don't know where we're going. Why should it matter? Premature.

Alexa says:

Disappointing Beautiful Molasses
There's a truly great film here waiting to be pulled out of the molasses...

You can read more of her thoughts, here.

Finally, Jose was even more succinct but I suspect it's something of a spoiler so I'm putting it after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Sep132012

Interview: William H. Macy On "Free Passes" and Trying Too Hard

Amir reporting from Toronto.

One of the films that has played to really strong audience reception on the festival circuit so far is Ben Lewin's The Sessions (opening November 8th). I enjoyed the film quite a lot myself and as I said in my review, it has the potential to go far in this awards season. For the ocassion of the film's premiere at TIFF, I interviewed William H. Macy who plays Father Brendan, an open-minded priest who consults Mark O'Brien (John Hawkes) about his sex life.

William H Macy at the Sessions premiere at TIFF © Kara Dillon [src]

AMIR: I wanted to tell you a quick story. When I was a teenager I had a self-made poster of you pointing the gun to your face from your last frame in Boogie Nights. I guess it was my weird way of expressing my teenage angst. I’m understandably really nervous and excited to meet you in person.

WILLIAM H MACY: [Laughing] Interesting. I’ve had the same experiences as I go through my career, sitting in a room with these people that I’ve just idolized my whole life.

I can’t imagine you’re still fazed by it.

No, I meet some amazing actors. I really don’t know how to handle myself in those situations.

You’re newest film, The Sessions, it’s a really heartfelt and genuine film, but were you aware of Mark O’Brien prior to this? At what stage did you get involved in the project?

No. I wasn’t, and I think Helen and John were both set before I read the script. My agent sent me the script. Many years ago I did a film called Door to Door where I played a fellow with cerebral palsy and I got involved with a wonderful organization called United Cerebral Palsy. I think I was predisposed to like the script that way. I read it and I just thought it was a great tale. Well told, simple. It was the perfect timing for me. I’m doing a TV series and I was on hiatus. It was just a no-brainer. I tend to make decisions really quickly. If it’s good I just say yes right away.

AMIR: Did you have any reservations about playing this character? I don’t know how religious you are in your personal life, but playing religious figures is always tricky... [MORE AFTER THE JUMP]

Click to read more ...