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Entries in The Nutcracker (3)

Friday
Nov022018

Posterized: Joe Johnston, a low profile director with a high profile filmography

by Nathaniel R

Joe Johnston behind the scenes on Star Wars (1977) his very first movie in his mid 20s

With the long-gestating The Nutcracker and the Four Realms now in theaters (its initial shoot wrapped nearly two years ago!) it occurred to us to look at the directorial career of Joe Johnston. When the studio opted for a full month of reshoots on The Nutcracker, the original director, Lasse Hallström was unavailable so Johnston stepped in (and now there's a joint "directed by" credit). Johnston is hardly a household name but every time his name pops up we're reminded that a chunk of his filmography is actually fairly famous.

How many of his 10 theatrically-released movies have you seen? The posters are after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Nov012018

Review: "The Nutcracker and the Four Realms"

by Chris Feil

Yes, Disney’s The Nutcracker and the Four Realms is another attempt to monetize a familiar property into CGI fantasy excess. This time it is the Tchaikovsky ballet (itself an adaptation of an adaptation) getting the family film treatment, often owing more narratively to its cinematic genre predecessors like Alice in Wonderland and the Narnia movies than its actual source material. While it does fall into the garish trappings of those films, the film gets a good bit more mileage out of not taking itself so straightfaced. Within that familiar framework, the film fascinates by letting itself get a little cuckoo.

Mackenzie Foy is Clara, a young girl mourning the death of her mother, bestowed a mysterious egg-shaped lockbox as a Christmastime dowry. Spiritually guided by her godfather, played by Morgan Freeman In An Eyepatch, she ventures into the fantasy land formerly visited by her mother. But now that wintery world is at war with itself, three of its more upbeat realms against a foggy, mouse-infested one lorded over by Helen Mirren’s Mother Ginger.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Mar072016

Bewitched, Bothered, and Be Link-ed

Thrillist Best Movies of 2016. haha. I don't know exactly how this column is going to work but I'm curious to find out
THR an interview with producer Irwin Winkler on Martin Scorsese's Silence and the Creed sequel
Frontier an oral history of "The Golden Girls"
Twitter Why Leo waited until just now to win an Oscar 

Nick Flicks Picks are you following his supporting actress project? The gold numbers reflect full performance reviews
Guardian Fans keep trying to restore Star Wars (1977) because George Lucas doesn't want
Film Mix Tape praises Michelle Visage as RuPaul's Drag Race returns (TONITE. WHEEEE)
Comics Alliance if you want to have yet another superhero's cameo in Batman v Superman spoiled for you, here is the info
Deadline How Mark Rylance won the Oscar without any campaigning
AV Club Disney's next animated feature will be an adaptation of The Nutcracker 
i09 a fan film about Darth Maul, the only good thing to emerge from that second Star Wars trilogy 
Variety an interview with Julian Fellowes on the series finale of Downton Abbey. Good stuff. Between the exits of Mad Men and now Downton, I have so few shows that feel like they're a part of my life (from staying power) left.

Read Only if You've Seen The Witch
If you've already seen The Witch I'd recommend reading these two takes on its most riveting scenes and primarily its divisive ending and the subversive extent of the femininism within the film. Salon's look at Thomasin as a "Final Girl laced into a puritan bodice" is great and a piece at Vague Visages takes a more mixed tack. Angelica Jade Bastién grapples with what she feels is unearned about the film's jawdropping finale:

I love the film, but how feminist can The Witch be if Thomasin remains primarily a cipher?