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Entries in The Help (38)

Monday
Aug082011

10 Word Reviews: Maids, Apes, Robots

A few movies we haven't yet said much about. In the interest of saying something -- more will definitely follow in the case of The Help and The Rise of the Planet of the Apes both of which I suspect we'll be talking about thru Oscar season -- here's two handfuls of words for each.

2011... the year of the put upon maid?

The Housemaid (Im Sang-Soo)
in which a nanny/maid contemplates her own Fatal Attraction
10WR: South Korea continues its Actressy roll. Classy/Trashy, expertly shaped. B+ 

The Help (Tate Taylor)
Maids in the South tell their provoactive stories to a feisty young writer
10WR: Ungainly in telling yet super compelling. Well seasoned cornpone acting.
UPDATE: FULL REVIEW 

Transformers Dark of the Moon (Michael Bay)
giant fucking robots return so that visual f/x may occur and billions may be made
10WR: Surprisingly coherent explosiveness. But debris clears immediately (i.e. totes forgettable) C+ 

Cars 2 (John Lasseter & Brad Lewis)
in which Mater the tow truck, the Jar Jar Binks of Pixar, travels the world.
10WR: Noisy unfunny lemon stuck in traffic jam of easy gags. D-

Septien (Michael Tully)
in which..., no, I don't know what happens. Something about three abused backwoods brothers.
10WR: Incomprehensible indie auteurism. Masturbatory but at least someone's getting off. D

Rise of the Planet of the Apes (Rupert Wyatt)
a science experiment gone awry has deadly simian consequences
10WR: Overly familiar beastie, schocked back to life by superb staging. B+
10 Word Bonus Thought: As new directors go, we suspect Rupert Wyatt could "A"  

COMING SOON: I know that everyone is already talking about Andy Serkis's killer work as "Cesar" in terms of its Oscar battles to come. But I want to let the film settle before I sound off. Anyway, I already suspect this conversation will make me crazy because it'll end up being a "supporting" discussion and "Cesar" is the lead of the film. James Franco's stardom is a red herring ;) 

Friday
Aug052011

The Link-Up

Ultra Culture "the stills photographer is here? fetch me my viewfinder at once!" HEE
Movie|Line on the weirdly surprising colors of the new EW issue featuring The Help. (More on this film right here very soon.)
Wet Asphalt "how to write a book in three days" regarding Michael Moorcock (of Elric of Melnibone fame. Weird that Hollywood's never managed to make that into a franchise)
Scott Feinberg thinks The Artist will be a good case study for Oscar. Will a silent film catch on in today's marketplace?
lemonwade doesn't mind the lack of Supes' spit curl but don't get him started on those cape pleats.
Show Blitz Game of Thrones director Brian Kirk in discussions to helm Thor 2. er... i worry about this. Thor's saving grace was its humor and Game of Thrones biggest problem as a series is its humorlessness (believe me the book has humor... admittedly of the gallows kind. But still)
Scene Stealers h-a-t-e-s on The Change-Up consider this opening bit about that trailer moment where infant poo flies at Justin Bateman's face. 

I know how Dave feels. In its opening moments “The Change-Up” took a dump in my mouth, and did not relent until the credits rolled.

Ouch. But then the film really does look terrible. Let me know if you see it and can verify.

Anomalous Material top ten movie roles Lady Gaga could have played. (I myself suspect she cannot act. But I'll hold my tongue.)
Socialite Life look i love Neil Patrick Harris but should he and David Burtka really be yachting with Elton John? Shouldn't NPH be doing penance for Beastly and The Smurfs? And by penance I mean: searching tirelessly for scripts that are actually worthy of his talent? Because, awards-show hosting aside, isn't it going to waste?

Unearned vacation! Find a good movie NPH.

Off Cinema
Daily What "Internet Filtration System" I'm lol'ing despite the fact that i've screwed this up myself in moments of speed typing. (sigh)
Tom Shone wonders if Sarah Palin is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. It sounds far-fetched until you actually read what he has to say. 
The Onion "Obama Turns 50 Despite Republican Opposition" hee. 

I'm loving this video called "Trim"

Trim from Petey Boy on Vimeo.

 

It's amazing how a change in hairstyles affects your perception about someone. People don't talk about this but that's the #1 thing that's most depressing about losing your hair -- if you're someone who is visually oriented that is -- it really cuts down on the number of ways you can modulate your own look and persona. I am my hair ♪

Judy Fest
Stirred, Straight Up With a Twist has a detailed look at The Pirate, which is one of the films I sadly missed at the current Judy Garland retrospective here in NYC. Weirdly I've never seen it despite the fact that Gene Kelly and Judy are both among my top dozen or so favorite movie stars of all time. I absolutely disagree with the comments about Gene Kelly's screen persona though since they directly contradict what I wrote in my For Me and My Gal review about his sexual allure. 
Enthusiasm has notes on the The Pirate and its camp value.
Towleroad In this week's column I wrote up a short bit about Presenting Lily Mars (1943) which is my new favorite that I hadn't yet seen from the Garland canon. Let's raise this film's profile, people. It's really funny and quite fresh. I was tempted to slap it in the face and then take it to bed like some prim but randy 40s heroine. Loved Van Heflin in it. 

Thursday
Apr072011

Supporting Actress Predix & Jessica Chastain

I don't have the patience or the time to research this but what do you suppose was the tipping point moment when Hollywood decided that they MUST have Jessica Chastain in every single movie in production? She's like Michael Fassbender's twin sister in terms of output. This happens fairly regularly with actors that Hollywood suspects you'll go crazy for. The most recent examples: Mia Wasikowska and Chloe Moretz. Sometimes the audience complies fawning all over the actor, other times they get all excited about the person as a celebrity but not as an actor (Colin Farrell's weird initial trajectory some years back), and other times they barely notice and don't care and Hollywood starts scrambling for another next big thing. [Editors note: Actually they're always scrambling for that even if you do embrace the one before.]

What will happen in 2011 with Jessica Ubiquity Chastain? Hollywood has gifted her with a potentially huge year. Will her work return that investment? Here's what her year is like...

Jessica Chastain in THE TREE OF LIFE

  • JAN - She co-starred with Michael Shannon in Sundance hit "TAKE SHELTER"
  • FEB - She started filming "THE WETTEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD" with an all star ensemble that includes Shia Labeouf, Tom Hardy, Mia Wasikowska and Gary Oldman.
  • MAR - She turned the big 3-0.
  • MAY - She stars as Brad Pitt's wife in Terrence Malick's long awaited drama "THE TREE OF LIFE"
  • JUL - She co-stars with Chloe Moretz and Sam Worthington in the thriller "THE FIELDS"
  • AUG - She plays the young version of Helen Mirren in 'THE DEBT" and is part of the Southern ensemble in "THE HELP" with Emma Stone.
  • NOV - She co-stars with acclaimed thesps Ralph Fiennes & Vanessa Redgrave in the Shakespearean adaptation "CORIOLANUS"
  • TBA -- She's supposedly completed work on Terrence Malick's Tree of Life follow up picture which stars Rachel McAdams. She's also Salome in "WILDE SALOME" which is Al Pacino's documentary about Oscar Wilde's play. It might come out this year.  If you've ever seen his Looking for Richard, we imagine it'll be like that - totally worth seeing if you're into the theater, the playwright in question and don't mind listening to actors indulgently talk about their craft (I don't just not mind this. I love this) but otherwise you probably won't care.

My god. Does she ever sleep?

I realize that Terrence Malick's films have never resulted in an acting Oscar nomination but there's a first time for everything and one has to assume she'll be in the 2011 conversation in some way even if it's just "oh my god there she is again!" I've included her in the predicted five because honestly, this is the hardest time I've ever had predicting Best Supporting Actress a Year in Advance. None of the roles/film/star matchups are screaming ME!

I am totally anxious to hear your thoughts on this entirely foggy category. This category requires psychic powers and perhaps mine are on the fritz.

 

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