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Yes No Maybe So - Beauty & The Beast

"Nice teaser but it going to be hard for Disney to top one of their true masterpieces of animation" - Jaragon

 "I don't have high hopes for the principals either, but the real draw is the supporting cast. I'm a NO on McGregor's accent and a YES on McKellen, so put me down as a MAYBE SO." -BD

 "CGI chandeliers? Damn, DIsney, let them build a set." -Jacob

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Entries in X-Men (76)

Thursday
May262016

Bram Stoker's Dracula, Helena Bonham-Carter, and Peggy Lee Fever

On this day in history as it relates to the movies...

1828 Feral teenager Kaspar Hauser is discovered wandering Nuremberg, claiming to have been raised in total isolation. Theories abound and the story inspires many artists down the road including Werner Herzog in the film The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (1974).
1877 Influential dancer Isadora Duncan is born. Vanessa Redgrave gets an Oscar nomination playing her in Isadora! (1968)
1886 Al Jolson is born. Will later star in the first "talkie" The Jazz Singer (1927)
1894 Silent film star Norma Talmadge is born
1897 Bram Stoker's epistolary novel "Dracula" is published. Never stops being adapted for film and television but our hearts will always belong to Francis Coppola's Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) despite the aggravating double possessive
1907 John Wayne was born. Did he always talk like that?
1913 Peter Cushing is born in England. Later stars in Hammer Horror films with his irl best friend Christopher Lee, the Dracula to his Van Helsing. Perhaps most famously Carrie Fisher 'recognizes his foul stench' when she's captured in Star Wars
1914 Geoffrey Unsworth, two time Oscar winning genius cinematographer is born. Shot so many gorgeous movies like 2001, Cabaret, TessSuperman as well as a legendary bad one in Zardoz

1920 Peggy Lee is born. The popular singer was mysteriously left out of AMPAS's annual "In Memoriam" section at the Oscars despite numerous film connections, like voicing multiple characters in Lady in the Tramp, starring in a remake of The Jazz Singer, popularizing the song "Why Don't You Do Right?" in Stage Door Canteen (later spectacularly used in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?), and even nabbing an admittedly strange supporting actress nomination for Pete Kelly's Blues (1955). Now where's that biopic we were promised from Todd Haynes starring Reese Witherspoon?
1926 Miles Davis is born. His biopic is in theaters currently because famous men get biopics.
1948 Stevie Nicks emerges with her diaphamous shawls from mother's womb; starts spinning. We see her gypsy.
1949 The legendary Pam Grier is born. Also answers to "Coffy," "Foxy Brown," and "Jackie Brown"
1961 Tarsem Singh is born. Eventually trades truly weird beautiful auteurial stuff for still weird CGI mainstream drudgery


1966 Helena Bonham Carter is born. Initially pegged as Merchant Ivory's favorite dress up doll, she goes on to have a rather spectacularly enduring career. Happy 50th Helena!

Helena's 10 Best Performances? My List...

  1. Wings of the Dove (1997) shoulda won the Oscar
  2. Fight Club (1999) shoulda been nominated for the Oscar
  3. Howard's End (1992) shoulda been nominated for the Oscar
  4. Sweeney Todd (2007) shame about the singing voice. because otherwise...
  5. A Room With a View (1986) 
  6. Suffragette (2015)
  7. The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005)
  8. Eyesore in Wonderland (2010)
  9. Lady Jane (1985)
  10. Hamlet (1990)

1971 Lenny, by Julian Barry. opens on Broadway. Barry adapts it to film three years later with Bob Fosse directing. They both receive Oscar nominations. Lenny even gets a third life in a way when it basically serves as the film within the film of All That Jazz
1984
"Let's Hear It For the Boy," from Footloose, hits #1 on the pop charts. Goes on to an Original Song nomination at the Oscars. Loses to "I Just Called To Say I Love You" by Stevie Wonder from Woman in Red
2006 X-Men: Last Stand, the third X-Men motion picture, opened in theaters and was bad enough to destroy the franchise...except they kept right on making them. Tomorrow X-Men 6 opens, better known as X-Men Apocalypse.

Sunday
May152016

Tweetweek 

Just for Sunday fun, Tweets that amused this week. Plus beautiful actresses (duh). But if you'll excuse me let's start with this weirdly flattering twosome. 

Haha.  The Golden Statue > The Scarlet Letter.

Right?

Huzzah Jamie! This long time TFE fan is now on the writing staff of Empire. We live for corny awards show jokes about category fraud so I hope at least one survived (I am a few episodes behind on Empire but will catch up this week).

More after the jump including Goldie Hawn, Blake Lively, The Lobster, and X-Men Acopalypse advertisements.

Click to read more ...

Friday
May132016

Thank Link It's Friday

Vanity Fair meet Millicent Simmonds, a young deaf actress starring in Todd Haynes next film Wonderstruck
Film Independent if you are very rich and can afford $150+ to see a live screenplay reading, Hannah and Her Sisters is being performed tonight in Manhattan. Olivia Wilde directs an all star cast including: Bobby Cannavale, Rose Byrne, Uma Thurman, Michael Sheen, Maya Rudolph, and Salman Rushdie. (Love all those ladies but I'll save my pennies to see two fully staged Broadway shows on discount for that price. Jesus)
Oscars YouTube has released a bunch of conversational videos with the team behind Beauty & The Beast for its 25th Anniversary
Decider Joe Reid remembers gay romcom The Broken Hearts Club (2000)
The Film Stage interview with Terence Davies about Sunset Song (2016) now playing
Vulture why X-Men Apocalypse has so little buzz

 

Stage Buddy Nico Tortorella, of Younger fame, tests his comic chops out on stage in "Crude"
Nick's Flick Picks is revisiting the 1996 Cannes Festival, day by screening day. First up was Oscar nominees Ridicule (1996)
Film Forum (NYC) is screening several films based on the work of Noél Coward starting today including Design for Living, Bunny Lake is Missing, and Brief Encounter
Rolling Stone on a newly restored X rated Japanese anime from the 70s, Belladonna of Sadness
Talk House a comic strip review of a comic book movie (Civil War) - this is really fun
THR George Miller talks about his past Cannes jury stints (this next week he's leading the jury) and Oscar night for Mad Max Fury Road 
Interview Magazine unearths a Laura Dern interview from 1990. Great photos. 

Off Cinema
Monkey See lovely piece on reading to your children and the power of spoilers with a Star Wars slant
Madonnarama Madonna will be honoring the late Prince with a performance at the Billboard music awards on May 22nd
Vox on progressive US's citizens frequent threat to move to Canada -- hard to do!
Mic LGBT magazines have an unfortunate habit of lily white male covers, straight and gay. Here are 100 suggestions for LGBT people of color who'd look great on magazine covers. 

Body Positivity
This topic seems to be in the air right now -- and god knows who couldn't use it? -- so here are two good links on insecurities and self-discoveries  
Buzzfeed "Wrestling taught me how (not) to be a man"  
Towleroad "I am a Man..." is there strength in revealing our insecurities? Or just camarederie? 

This is Funny
I don't know who did it though I'd love to give credit -- maybe it's from here? -- but I LOL'ed 

More Captain America Funny: In related unexpectedly amusing news, the US Army confirms that it would indeed owe Steve Rogers 66 years of back pay after he was thawed out in Captain America: The First Avengers; Pajiba reveals a list of every "Chris" that is not part of the Marvel-verse; Over at Funny or Die, thanks to Tony Hale, Civil War Reenactments now mean a completely different thing...It's not a hobby it's a lifestyle!

Random News To Go
Godzilla 2 has been pushed back to 2019. Way to strike while the iron is hot, Warner Bros. Five years between movies? Strange.
• It's not official official yet but Lupita Nyong'o is reportedly in talks for Marvel's Black Panther, assumed to be the superhero's love interest
• We dreaded it and it's now official: Agent Carter, Marvel's most joyful current property (and they have so many now on TV and film) has been cancelled. In much happier news, The Real O'Neals (absolutely adorable and super funny - please tell me you're watching) has been renewed. Here's a bunch of other new cancellations and renewals.

Thursday
Apr282016

I Cannot Tell a Link

Guardian Glenn on 10 best Australian documentaries ever including Canes Toads (in 3D) a film I saw at Sundance years ago that freaked me right out
The Tracking Board Martin Scorsese might make a George Washington biopic. Hmmm, how does Leonardo DiCaprio look in a white powder wig?
Oscars.org Los Angelenos readers take note. Alan Menken and Angela Lansbury will be taking part in a 25th anniversary screening of Beauty & The Beast on May 9th. You can buy tickets at the link. 
MNPP Jason attends a special Aliens screening and Q&A with Sigourney Weaver (who is still looking incredible) 
Awards Daily thinks Passengers (the sci-fi film starring Chris Pratt & Jennifer Lawrence) could be one of our Best Picture nominees

The Playlist new images from The Neon Demon. Can't wait to see this 
New Yorker Richard Brody provocatively argues that film critics and publications need to move beyond "theatrical release" or "festival" when considering what makes a movie worth writing about
Variety more Cannes news. While we've already discussed the main jury, they've announced the sidebars. All three will be presided over by women (!): Actress Marthe Keller for Un Certain Regard; Director Naomi Kawase for Short Films; Director Catherine Corsini for Camera D'Or
Coming Soon has a new Kubo and the Two Strings trailer if you're interested (my general personal rule of thumb now is to stop after the first teaser or trailer so nothing is spoiled). Laika makes such great movies I don't even need a trailer. I'm always in.
/Film The Jungle Book has a how-they-did-it visual fx reel going around
i09 the X-Men finally get to wear costumes that are a smidgeon like their comic book origins at some point in X-Men Apocalypse (hopefully not just at the end)
Interview talks to programmer Thomas Beard about the current Film Society program 'Queer Cinema Before Stonewall '
FSLC ...and there's a few more days of that program left if you're in NYC

Provocative Thought O' The Day
Uproxx "Are more famous people really dying in 2016 or does it just seem that way?" which delves quite a lot into the 1980s as relevant cultural force

Off Cinema
Drama Desk Awards The nominations are in. Hamilton was eligible last year (since Off Broadway productions factor into these awards) which is why it's not up for anything. The revival of She Loves Me (with two of musical comedy's greatest stars: Laura Benanti & Jane Krakowski) leads all productions with 9 nominations. American Psycho wracked up the most nods for a new musical (well, it's tied with Steve Martin & Edie Brickelle's Bright Star) EXCEPT the big one: Best Musical. Weird, right. That's gotta sting even if the high nomination count isn't any sort of axe to the head for the show. Famous TV & Film actors nominated this year for their stage work include: Jessica Lange, Michael Shannon, Michael C Hall, and Frank Langella. Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o, who has been much-buzzed for her performance in Eclipsed, was not nominated this morning. Hmmm.

Today's Watch
Chase Whale interviews Key & Peele about their kitten heist movie Keanu. Fun bit.

Tuesday
Apr192016

Newish Home Viewing: The Lady in the Van, The Oscar in the Franchises.

Here's what's new recently for your eyeballs.

Newish to DVD/BluRay
Fifty Shades of Black. Marlon Wayans sends up the Grey S&M movie.
The Force Awakens. Not available for rental yet but when it is we shall rewatch
The Forest. In which Natalie Dormer enters Japan's Suicide Forest to confront true terror: the reviews of Gus Van Sant's 'Sea of Trees' which is also set there.
Ip Man 3. For your completists. I haven't seen any of these since I figured The Grandmaster covered it for me. You?
The Lady in the Van. In which Maggie Smith gets grittier and descends the economic ladder for once. Maintain high society snobbier via her delusions of
Norm of the North. Animated. Though probably nothing we need worry about over here.
The Revenant. That which did rob George Miller of his rightful Best Director Oscar in February.

new to streaming
AJIN (S1) on Netflix. An anime sci-fi series about a teenager who realizes he is not human. Cue: suspenseful music, giant expressive eyes.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (S2) on Netflix. I haven't started yet due to travels. Can't wait to see my Jane Krakowski again. Tell me NOTHING. 
Mad Max on Amazon Prime. The original. Roughly 20 years before everyone realized Mel Gibson was also Mad.
Kong, King of the Apes (S1) on Netflix. This is a kids sci-fi series about Kong battling robot dinosaurs or some such. Has Netflix been doing kids series for awhile and we're just now noticing?
Tangerines on Amazon Prime. Not the awesome LA trans hooker comedy but the Estonian Oscar nominated drama.

A BURNING QUESTION: WHAT'S WITH OSCAR'S FRANCHISE FICKLENESS?
All the Bourne films (2002-2012 - 4 films thus far) and all the X-Men films (2000-2014 - five films thus far) have been reissued on DVD & BluRay for the obvious reason: new theatrical outing about to happen. This prompted head spinning when randomly thinking about their Oscar histories. Weirdly both series have been popular from the start with audiences but have just one film within them that Oscar responded to: The Bourne Ultimatum (2007, 3 Oscar noms/wins) and X-Men Days of Future Past (2012, 1 Oscar nomination).

Rehearsing a fight scene for Bourne Ultimatum. Photograph by Greg Williams

Isn't it fascinating how non-patterned Oscar is with franchises as a general rule? Sometimes they're not into them at all and then all of a sudden they are (those franchises and James Bond of course). Other times it's steady if halfhearted interest (superhero films in particular categories). Often it seems vaguely disconnected to the particulars of individual films. Consider this: Batman Forever is easily the Academy's second most all time favorite Batman film? WTF.  They've also been weirdly sporadic in Harry Potter love ignoring one of the best entries (Order of the Phoenix) that actually worked hard for an Art Direction nomination while rewarding the film that took place mostly in a tent (Deathly Hallows Part 1).

On the broad surface of things you'd think that Oscar voters, many of whom are ordinary working people who just happen to be in showbiz (like Emmy voters) would treat franchises the way that Emmy treats TV... which is all franchises. Not that we recommend this! With Emmy if they don't notice you at beginning they almost never do -- and they're loyal to the point of stupidity if they like you at all! Oscar doesn't really equate with that at all in ongoing narratives. What do you make of that? I ask because I'm not sure. I don't have all the answers!!! Is it just happenstance involving the every shifting competition in each calendar year at the movies?

Monday
Mar212016

YNMS: Ben-Hur's Wild Apocalypse for the King

So many trailers have recently emerged that we can't give them all full Yes No Maybe So treatment ... so let's collect them all in one place after the jump with a single decision on each.

We'll start with what is sure to be a misbegotten thickheaded testosterone fueled retelling of an Oscar winning classic. Even Morgan Freeman in dreadlocks can't make it look bearable...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Feb082016

Linkbowl 

Boy Culture revisiting Maurice with director James Ivory 30 years later
The Guardian previews Alone in Berlin, a new WW II drama starring Emma Thompson & Brendan Gleeson
Playbill How the Newsies choreographer got Channing Tatum tap dancing for Hail, Caesar!
The Film Stage 15 movies to see after you've seen Hail, Caesar!

Film Mixtape Chris Feil's top ten.
MNPP [nsfw] Tom Hardy on the set of Taboo... with tattoos 
Antagony & Ecstasy comparing current Best Picture nominees to previous Best Picture winners 
Pajiba on Star Wars...dildos? 
i09 argues that Virtuosity (1995) starring Russell Crowe and Denzel Washington now works as a 'bad movie we love' instead of just a bad movie 

Today's Watch...
I was watching George Clooney and Channing Tatum lounge and dance about in Roman soldier and Sailor costumes during the big game so I watched the new movie commercials afterwards. X-Men Apocalypse, Captain America: Civil War, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2, The Jungle Blook, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Jason BourneIndependence Day: Resurgence are included after the jump.

Click to read more ...