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Entries in Rachel McAdams (37)

Monday
Apr282014

Podcast: Mean Girls Commentary, Two Parts

You own a copy of Mean Girls (2004), right?

Pull it off the shelf, rent it or Netflix Instant it (it expires May 1st!) so you can watch as you listen to this podcast. In this very special 10th anniversary celebration, Nathaniel R (The Film Experience) and Joe Reid (The Wire) return to North Shore High to watch Mean Girls together and provide you with our very own DVD commentary track. If you don't watch while you listen we'll sound like mad men giggling out of context or merely like we're too gay to function.

We discuss everything: performance, writing, costumes, set design, scoring and even casting that almost was -- it would have been such a different film. We also talk the reliable time capsule worthiness of the high school comedy film genre and tangents occur. Due to file sizes and the 97 minutes of running time, I can't embed both parts here in the post but you can download the 2 part conversation on iTunes. Or, if you are seeing this post much later, both parts are here on the podcast upload page from 2014.

Joe and I would really love you to continue the conversation in the comments. (Katey and Nick couldn't attend. But they love Ladysmith Black Mambazo!)

Articles referenced in The Podcast
Mean Girls Cast power rankings
Hit Me With Your Best Shot 
'let me tell you something about Lindsay Lohan' 
IndieWire: Daniel Franzese's coming out letter 
The Map of North Shore High's Cafeteria

 

Monday
Apr282014

Beauty Vs Beast: War of the Plastics

JA from MNPP here, bringing our weekly "Beauty Vs Beast" competition to North Shore High School for Mean Girls Week, The Film Experience's ongoing celebration of the film's 10th anniversary. That's right, it's time to pick a side - will you put on your bathing suit even if you're a lesbian and stand in defiance of Regina George, mean queen of the Plastic machine, or will you side with her, the devil you know, in the face of Cady Heron, that cruel interloper from the carcass-strewn wilds of the home-schooling system? Take a stand (and make sure to get your pink shirt back too)...

 

You've got one week to make your preference known and to scribble down your thoughts in the Burn Book that is the comments, so have at it.

PREVIOUSLY Last week we went mutant-crazy and asked you to choose between Professor Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) and whaddya know, evil has triumphed! It was closer than usual but Fassbender found the metal-core of your affections and yanked it his way, 60%-wise. Kate spoke truth to most everybody's feelings regarding the difficulty of this choice...

"I'd actually call it draw, myself. Xavier and McAvoy are the emotional core/grounding force of the film, while Magneto/Fassbender provides a kind of electric energy that jolts the audience. Their powers mirror their dramatic function in XMFC. Both of them are needed for the film to work."

Wednesday
Apr232014

Beauty Break: "On Wednesdays We Wear Pink"

Mean Girls Week Begins! For the next seven days (betwixt the normal blogging) we'll be dropping in occasionally on the students of North Shore High to celebrate 10 years of Mean Girls which opened April 30th, 2004.

For now please to enjoy this very pink gallery with a lavender note from Damian...

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Oct012013

NYFF: Charm Offensive

TFE's coverage of the 51st New York Film Festival (Sep 27-Oct 14) continues with JA discussing About Time.

Charm is a hell of a drug. Be it in real life or up on a movie screen, it can intoxicate a person right out of their senses, making the charmer in question immune from all kinds of quibbles - major or minor, animal vegetable or mineral. If that certain somebody or somebodies are lighting off sparks, we the charmed, defenseless and weak, are willing to overlook a lot whilst under their spell. Put those fireworks front and center in a romantic comedy and you're pretty well good to go...

And so it goes with Richard Curtis' new flick About Time. There's actually a sequence in this movie where the beloveds at center stage (played by Domhnall Gleeson and Rachel McAdams) are falling for each other and we're given a montage of time passing involving wacky outfit changes and god save us all subway buskers, and yet instead of reaching into my brain through my ear canal and lobotomizing myself right then and there I only rolled my eyes a little - not even a lot! That's a feat, one I must lay down in awe at the feet of our charm-riddled lovebirds. ("It's the H1N1 of romantic comedies!" = my poster blurb.) I almost always find McAdams worth watching when she tries (at last year's fest I positively luxuriated in the sight of her campily swanning around in lingerie in Brian DePalma's Passion) and here she's at her most homespun loveable, fringe and all - she knows her way around and back again with a sly knowing smirk.

But I'd be lying if I said it my scales (and the movie's, it must be said) weren't tilted ever so slightly in the favor of Gleeson - indeed I came out of this movie thinking I'd just been introduced to the world's skinniest gingeriest movie star since Julia Roberts squealed "Well color me happy there's a sofa in here for two," in thigh high pleather boots and a Carol Channing wig. Domhnall's been building up a memorable resume with everything I've seen him in, from Never Let Me Go to Anna Karenina, but here, to borrow a turn of phrase from Mama Grape, he shimmers and he glows. Total charm offensive.

He's so captivating that not only can I overlook mad-cap subway musician antics, I can very nearly tip-toe right past all kinds of questionable moral quandaries that his time-travel antics cough up, like gosh there's nothing at all creepy about relationships built on excessive one-sided manipulations (they're not really lie lies), and gosh, women don't so much need personal agency, do they, as long as somebody parrots their girly likes back at them. (A fixation on Kate Moss is a really strange fixation for a person to have though. Really very.)

Indeed the movie manages to swerve around these sorts of questions by pushing the third act's beating heart, where our expectations are set for the standard relationship implosion-to-reconciliation arc, into the body of a father-son picture instead (Bill Nighy's basically just playing Bill Nighy, or the Bill Nighy we all imagine Bill Nighy is, but I still like Bill Nighy, so I was okay with it); there's life in the fact that the movie manages to side-step our well-trod expectations, to be sure, but the movie actually kind of forgets about McAdams once she's good and won and churning out the babies. I hoped there'd be some curiosity bestowed upon her character regarding her amour's constant shuffling off into cupboards, at least? But that wasn't to be - she's set on the shelf while the film unearths its true colors, as a tear-jerking fantasy about family and memory and the passage of time, and also ping pong. Most meaningful ping pong!

Honestly though, truth be told, I was so high off what Domnhall was giving me it was only once the film was over and my love hangover set in that I began picking our personal love affair apart. And even then notsomuch. Subway buskers come and go, but Domhnall's grin is forever.

You should all make time (groan) for About Time when it plays at the festival tonight, 10/2, or 10/6. Then come tell me whether I was blinded by ginger or not.

Friday
Apr122013

Link Grams

Today's Must Read
New Yorker Screenwriter Alan Zweibel on his two run-ins with Roger Ebert (who gave him his worst review)

More Links 
In Contention Melissa Leo's gone Hollywood. Are the new films beneath the LEOgend's skill set?
Open Culture Alfred Hitchcock masterclass on film editing 
Cartoon Brew Disney destroys its hand drawn animation division. Honestly I'm shocked that this only happened now. It's been so long since they were in the hand drawn business. (Sigh)
The Playlist Abbie Cornish, Colin Farrell, and Anthony Hopkins in a movie about FBI agents with psychic abilities. Sounds terrible. 

And Four For You, Glen Coco! 
Hollywood.com has an empirical breakdown of the seven women of Mean Girls and who is doing best for themselves 9 years later. I almost didn't link though because of the weird lapses in facts just to praise Rachel McAdams. Yes, Hollywood.com, she has also had flops. And more than one of them.
i09 on why the western/sci-fi mashup is such a hard sell for audiences
MovieLine wonders why there's no remake of Near Dark (1987) in the works. Ugh. So glad there isn't! There's no topping Bill Paxton's "finger lickin' good" vamp.
Entertainment Weekly Matt Damon's new physique for Elysium 

Thursday
Jul262012

Hollywood's Current Hierarchy (According to Vulture)

Recently we discussed Forbes list of the highest paid actresses of the last year but money alone paints a crap portrait about what matters in the movies. Vulture recently released a list of the Top 100 Valuable Stars and weighed numerous factors like Oscar pull, box office, and media interest of various kinds. It's the kind of list that Premiere and Entertainment Weekly used to do in ye olden times, a list with more to say than just "hey, we need more page views, click on me 100 times for random photos with two sentence capsules!").

Since there's way too much to say about a list of 100 for a blog post, let's recap their Actressy stance within the top 100, only 30% of that list (sigh), starting with the undisputed queens...

Queen of Action.
Queen of Everything.
Queen of "America's Sweethearts".

27 more actresses (and commentary) after the jump

Click to read more ...