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Entries in Steven Soderbergh (35)

Wednesday
Aug122015

New DVD: The Knick, Hot Pursuit


Still annoyed that Reese Witherspoon blew her post Wild goodwill on Hot Pursuit, to be honest. Was hoping for a Legally Blonde level mainstream comedy, though that's an admittedly high bar to clear. It's too strenuously acted to be truly fun though it might well play better on cable and DVD when it will likely be seen in pieces because some of it is funny. Its part of this week's DVD/BluRay batch which includes:

But the big news this week is that The Knick's 1st Season is finally available which means that if you don't get Cinemax you can finally see what the fuss was about Steven Soderbergh's series and why TFE was so thrilled to have Cara Seymour guest blogging earlier this summer to celebrate her terrific work as a tough talking complicated nun

It's a hospital show but not, thankfully, a procedural. Instead it's about scientific advances, urban madness, and the state of public heaelth and medicine at the turn of the 20th century. Clive Owen plays a brilliant Chief of Medicine who is also a junkie. It's an uneven show all told (though the design team does a super 1900s New York, not all of the performances are eager to go for period texture so it sometimes feels out of time) but when its on it's really on. Perhaps the show aired too long ago to catch Emmy's attention or perhaps Emmy votesr just won't look at Cinemax when they're too busy with HBO and Showtime series, but it did win a Globe nod for Clive's performance and one Emmy nomination for Soderbergh's direction of the pilot. 

Friday
Jun192015

HMYBS: Magic Mike (Part Two)

Did you know that Magic Mike (2012) won TFE's Bronze Medal for Best Picture of 2012?Hit Me With Your Best Shot is looking at Magic Mike (2012) before strapping on possessed ballet slippers for The Red Shoes this coming Wednesday.

Due to some scheduling snafus / switcheroos this week we ended up divvying up our look back at Steven Soderberg and Channing Tatum's still undervalued but much enthused over Magic Mike (2012). So you got it in three parts, the first visual roundup (8 early bird participants), this roundup and my own choice, this weekend when I finally get myself together. It's been a looooooong week for me off blog.

The first batch of shot choices included a few takes on the Dallas/Kid training scene, and two surreal shots involving Dallas and Ken. This time it's the act of watching (Cody), the love of being watched (McConaughey), and the commodification of bodies / people.

Magic Mike (2012)
Directed by: Steven Soderbergh; Cinematography by: Steven Soderbergh as "Peter Andrews"

BEST SHOTS
(Pt 1) 7 Images
...and now (Pt 2) 9 Images a couple NSFW so it's all after the jump...
click on the images to read the corresponding article -- really good articles this week, I think. 

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Jun172015

HMYBS: Magic Mike (Part One)

Channing Tatum, Joe Mangianello and Matt Bomer have been hitting the campaign trail hard (no pun intended) to build excitement for Magic Mike XXL (2015) and for our little corner of the world, we'll "help" by revisiting the original with the less hilarious title of Magic Mike (2012). I love the title Magic Mike XXL but it's a relief that XXL is not a true Roman Numeral because think of all the sequels we would have missed between 2012 and 2015 if it were?

Among the campaign efforts from the beefcake cast thus far, are online vines, marching in LA's pride parade, and Channing Tatum's highly enjoyable Reddit AMA today, which included these two moments which just delighted me (as well as a stealth dig on Jupiter Ascending).

But I digress. Due to our very complicated schedule this week (I've been busy corralling future guests as well as talking with Ann Dowd who has the whole day tomorrow to talk to you about the love of acting and The Leftovers) this is only Part One of the Magic Mike celebration and if you want to play along we'll do another roundup on Friday. But for now please to enjoy these articles from the early bird Best Shot Participants.

Magic Mike (2012)
Directed by: Steven Soderbergh; Cinematography by: Steven Soderbergh as "Peter Andrews"; Written by: Reid Carolin; Starring: Channing Tatum, Matthew McConaughey, Olivia Munn, Alex Pettyfer, Matt Bomer, Adam Rodriguez, Kevin Nash, and Joe Mangianello

MAGIC MIKE BEST SHOT(s) - PART ONE 
Click on any of the 7 photos to read the corresponding blogpost

Pre-2012, Tatum was one of my least favorite actors. But in Magic Mike he finally had a vehicle that showed off his natural easy charisma...
-Sorta That Guy

Not only is it incredibly amusing, it reflects on the movie’s views on using bodies, sexuality, and images as commodities...
-Coco Hits NY


It was here that the McConaissance peaked...
- The Entertainment Junkie 

True Story:  In the summer of 2012, I saw Magic Mike with my sister in a movie theater in Anderson, South Carolina... 
- Drink Your Juice, Shelby

 

There's something very Lynch-ian about this particular frame... the haunting, mysterious lightning and the positioning of Ken in a doll package...
-Hofverberg *first submission* 

While the film is very much focused on its male characters, I found myself appreciating Cody Horn's seemingly maligned performance much more on a re-watch... 
-Film Actually 

 

Are they checking each others' moves or lost in a reverie of their own reflections?
-Me Says 


CONTINUE ON TO PART TWO - NINE MORE SHOTS (Some NSFW)

Tuesday
Jun092015

Farewell & A Few Favorite Things

The Film Experience is thrilled to have Cara Seymour taking over the blog for the day. Here's her final post! - Editor

A Favorite Actor
I took this picture of the brilliant Patrick Fitzgerald in Dublin when we were performing "Gibraltar," his adaptation of James Joyce's "Ulysses". He worked on that novel, with the devotion of a monk and discovered things that no other academic had found. The greatest acting challenge I ever had was performing the Molly Bloom monologue, which was, even edited, forty minutes of stream of consciousness.  Patrick coached me every step of the way. The great Terry Kinney went on to direct a production with us, at The Irish Rep. We also performed together in Mike Leigh's "Ecstasy" in 1995, the first big hit for The New Group. We have had extraordinary moments together on stage.  He's one of my favorite actors.

A Favorite Song
Philip Chevron singing "Thousands are Sailing"

One of my favorite songs about Irish immigration. I used to go and see The Pogues. He performed this song in a spotlight, I remember him sparkling in the light, not sure if that was his jacket or his soul.

A Few Favorite Films
Martin Scorsese's King of Comedy (1983) and Abbas Kiarostami's Close-Up (1990). Love these movies, they feel like cousins. Something about class, fame and delusions and wanting to be someone else. And, of course, Robert DeNiro is just magical. I'd love to watch these movies together one night...if I ever got my son to bed early. 

Mama Roma (1962). I've watched this so many times.  I love Pasolini movies. Anna Magnani's performance is just brilliant. That laugh. That twinkle. And pain. There's a couple of seconds in that movie that just rip me apart.

There are many, many reasons to be a fan of Steven Soderbergh, who I've been working with on "The Knick," and one of them is that he used footage from one of my favorite English films, Poor Cow (1967) directed by Ken Loach in his haunting movie, The Limey (1999).  Terence Stamp was magnetic in both movies. Carol White was the lead actress in Poor Cow.  Carol White was really something. Ahead of her time.

"Poor Cow" with Carol White and Terence Stamp
love this clip

 

My takeover of The Film Experience is now just love notes. I could go on and on... so I better sign off! Thanks for reading. 

The Knick is back in October.  I start work next week on Elisabeth Subrin's film A Woman, A Part with Maggie Siff and John Ortiz. Check out Subrin’s blog, Who Cares About Actresses?

- Cara Seymour

 

Wednesday
Jan072015

Soderbergh's Viewing List Includes "Magic Mike XXL" Three Times! 

By now you've probably heard mention that Steven Soderbergh, he who is officially retired but not really because nobody totally believes it and he still works in various capacities, just posted his list of everything he watched and read this past year. I love Soderbergh's List-Mania more than I even love Soderbergh because I relate. This is now my favorite celebrity listing tradition of each year, not that there are very many consistent ones.

 The whole list is worth reading but I wanted to share nine highlights in the order in which they delighted me.

NINE HIGHLIGHTS IN ORDER OF HOW THEY DELIGHTED

09 He watched Lisa Kudrow's The Comeback the same day he watched Birdman... a very meta Hollywood day was November 9th.

08. I can't imagine what his Oscar ballot looks like since it appears in the middle of all his TV viewings and plentiful 1970s movies, he only watched nineteen 2014 movies (in order): The Monuments Men, Gone Girl (twice), Under the Skin, Pioneer (the Norwegian film), Finding Vivian Maier, Boyhood, Citizenfour, Birdman, Whiplash, The Babadook, Ida, Nightcrawler, American Sniper, A Most Violent Year, Foxcatcher, Unbroken, Inherent Vice, Selma, The Interview and Top Five. Given that that's all he watched

Let's guess what his Director ballot looks like... Maybe:

  1. Fincher - Gone Girl
  2. Inarritu - Birdman
  3. Linklater - Boyhood
  4. DuVernay - Selma
  5. ...????????? Gilroy? Chazelle? Miller? Anderson?

07. While his TV preference are very typical (all the acclaimed stuff) he seems to really appreciate funny women since he watches:  Inside Amy Schumer, Getting On, Girls, and Veep regularly.

06. Like me and many of you, he read Mark Harris's "Five Came Back" this summer

05. Since he watched American Graffiti again right before our 1973 Smackdown with Dana Delany we're free to pretend that he did it in preparation for enjoying our event! 

04. I can't fathom a double feature of Selma and 2001: A Space Odyssey just before Christmas which is why it's fun.

03. But nothing beats the double feature of Poland's awesome Ida followed by... wait for it... Peter Pan Live! 

02. On Valentine's Day he watched Ice Castles (1978). Love it. Okay maybe it was Ice Castles (2010) but it's more fun to imagine the earlier film. Take it away Melissa Manchester

Please, don't let this feeling end
It's everything I am
Everything I want to be
I can see what's mine now
Finding out what's true
Since I found you
Looking through the eyes of love

01 Look at how many times he's already watched Magic Mike XXL (2015). JEALOUS. Looks like he saw the first cut just five weeks after shooting began. And then twice more within another month. (If you missed our interview with an actress who appears briefly in Magic Mike XXL and told us about it, click here.) For the record, though Soderbergh isn't directing the sequel, he's still involved in multiple aspects including (according to IMDb) as cinematographer, editor, and executive producer. So it's still very much a Soderbergh picture... especially since his long time first assistant director/producer Gregory Jacobs is in the director's chair this time.

Thursday
Aug212014

Throwback Thursday FYC: sex, lies, and videotape (1989)

Our 1989 25th anniversary celebration continues...

Have you ever seen sex, lies and videotape? Steven Sodebergh won the Palme D'Or at Cannes for his very first film and somehow it wasn't all downhill from there. The film, which was a minor box office hit, was crucial in planting the seeds for the American indie boom of the 1990s but when Oscar nominations rolled around the Academy played it very safe largely shunning both of the year's most provocative critical darlings (the other being Do the Right Thing which we honored earlier this summer in a post just like this one). I spotted these FYC ads on eBay and thought I'd share them.

Andie MacDowell has won a lot of harsh criticism over the years for various performances, most notably Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes (for which she was dubbed over by Glenn Close) and Four Weddings and a Funeral but she's really wonderful in this picture and in Short Cuts. Blame Steven Soderbergh and Altman if you must but don't even try to deny it! 

More...

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
Mar122014

Linksy

IndieWire the winners at SXSW Fort Tilden (narrative) and The Great Invisible (doc). You may recall that Short Term 12 was the big discovery last year so let's hope Fort Tilden hits theaters soon. But mostly I'm leading with this because the still released has kittens in it. Kittens!

But mostly I led with that because the first still released has kittens in it. Three. Kittens. Kittens, I say.

KITTENS

Ahem. Some links...
LA Review of Books Charles Taylor on Meryl Streep's recent string of gorgon roles and particularly August: Osage County. Really interesting article but Streep fanatics should steer clear since it is merciless. (Slightly confused about what this essay is doing at a 'Review of Books' since none are mentioned.) 
Golden Globe I hadn't seen this before - celebrities fav movies. Turns out Robin Wright loves Werner Herzog, Carey Mulligan loves Steven Spielberg, Emile Hirsch has very Oscar-bait taste, and Julia Roberts loves The Mexican most of her own ???
MNPP [NSFW] Jake Gyllenhaal on the set of Everest
The Playlist on Steven Soderbergh's King of the Hill Criterion release and his dissatisfaction with his post Sex, Lies and Videotape pre Out of Sight period 

Towleroad "Hodor" (Kristian Nairn) on Game of Thrones comes out in an interview 
Movie City News on "popcorn time" and piracy
The Wrap supposedly four actors fighting for the Doctor Doom role in The Fantastic Four: Eddie Redmayne, Sam Riley, Domnhall Gleeson, and Toby Kebbell. I'd say that wasn't a great get considering the face will be covered with a metal mask... but then origin stories, you know, they'll have some time before the face plate.
Variety uh-oh chest thumping Celine Dion could be back at the Oscars again in an Original Song performance. She gets a duet with Miss Piggy "Something So Right" in the new Muppets film 

Finally...
I don't normally post any fundraiser things beyond the site's own need for funding, detailed here. For instance, I had to make a ruling on no campaigns for indie movies simply because I get so many requests every week it'd be a part time job just putting up those posts with no added value for you the reader. But for movie theaters I'll make an exception. Brooklyn is home to so many cinephiles it'd be a pity if they lost another old theater. So if you want to help save the Brooklyn Heights Cinema -- which needs to update its equipment or be shut down -- here's the info!