George Clooney is a talented actor and director, and often produces excellent work when he does both of those things. The Midnight Sky, his latest starring and directorial effort, features an incredible ensemble of character actors, stunning effects and production design, and a story clearly influenced by many seminal science fiction stories, but even in the hands of such talent fails to become something special.
It’s a hat trick of not that great movies!
To date this movie hasn’t managed to capture my interest but now there’s a new trailer and it looks fun and exciting! Let’s watch!
Four new character posters for the upcoming Disney movie that’s totally not about Disney or some kind of Randian paradise.
The Golden Globes are my favourite award show. The combination of humour and sincerity that can only be achieved when A-List celebrities, precious auteurs and television “we’re just happy to be here” actors are shoved sardine-like into a hotel ballroom and given as much booze as they can (or can’t) handle. An extra hat-tip this year to the Beverly Hilton who forgot to turn on the AC making melting orange spray tan the look of the evening.
This year, however, wasn’t quite the shitshow that the Globes can sometimes be. Amy Poehler & Tina Fey did a solid ten and then, as happens every year, twitter questioned where they went for the next 2 hours. The audience seemed to laugh hardest at how they introduced Amal Clooney to America:
“Amal is a human rights lawyer who worked on the Enron case, was an advisor to Kofi Annan regarding Syria and was selected for a three person U.N. commission investigating rules of war violations in the Gaza Strip. So tonight her husband is getting a lifetime achievement award.”
Quickly followed by massive gasps at their series of Bill Cosby rape jokes & pill/pudding pop impressions. Fun fact re: Amal, she actually sewed her own gloves the morning of the Awards. And when Ryan Seacrest interviewed the couple on the red carpet she pointed out the “Je Suis Charlie” button on her bag “in solidarity with the people of France”.
It wouldn’t be the last time the recent Charlie Hebdo tragedy was mentioned. In fact the Hollywood Foreign Press Association President talked about how important free speech is whether it be North Korea or Paris to a standing ovation. Helen Mirren, nominated for her role as a French chef in the 100 Foot Journey, wore a fountain pen pinned to her lapel.
The evening overall seemed to be sending a message of diversity. Breakout star Gina Rodriguez won Best Actress in a TV Musical or Comedy for her leading role on Jane the Virgin, a show which fluidly slips between Spanish & English. In her acceptance speech she said how she was grateful to represent “a culture that wants to see themselves as heroes”. (The title for this piece “I Can & I Did” came from how she paid tribute to her father.) Maggie Gyllenhaal won Best Actress in a Miniseries for the Honourable Woman, a show in which she played an arms dealer trying to reconcile things between Israel & Palestine, and gave quite the feminist speech.
The Amazon show Transparent won for Best TV Series, and the star Jeffrey Tambor won for Best Actor in a TV Musical or Comedy. A show about a Transgender person aired on a non-cable service won twice. And everyone cheered. The movie Pride was nominated (and I suspect, introduced for the first time to North American audiences) about UK gay activists who raised money to help during the Miners’ Strike. Matt Bomer got to thank his husband after winning best Supporting Actor in a Made for TV Film (the Normal Heart), which was about the AIDS epidemic.
Common & John Legend won for Best Original Song ‘Glory’ from the film about Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights movement, Selma. Downton Abbey star Joanne Froggatt won a best Supporting Actress award for her work during a storyline about rape. Eddie Redmayne won best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama about the life of Stephen Hawking (the Theory of Everything) and becoming paralyzed from ALS. Julianne Moore won Best Actress (Still Alice), beating all the younger nominees, in a role about a women with early onset Alzheimer’s. And Richard Linklater won Best Director for Boyhood (which also won Best Picture) for filming an indie movie over 12 years.
The message from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association this year was clear: Be different. Be brave. Be you.
I know next to nothing about this movie but I can tell you that it sure looks pretty.
The great news is that the Coen Brothers are making a new movie. The pretty good news related to that is that good actors will be starring in it.
It’s time to interrupt the endless barrage of Christmas calories
that I seem intent on shoving down my throat as quickly as possible
seriously, it’s like Gluttony Man in Se7en
but I don’t have my body tied down,
my arms are wilfully ladling anything alcoholic or sweet or tasty into my mouth
like it’s going out of fashion
to round up what I think have been my personal favourite games and movies of 2013.
The Monuments Men, the George Clooney directed World War 2 movie about a group of art experts rushing to rescue art and culture from the ravages of Hitlers war, has been pushed back to 2014. Apparently they simply just didn’t leave enough time between a spring shoot and a late fall/early winter release to complete post production.
This makes sense, however I’m sure the idea of releasing in the spring instead of against the tail end of awards season didn’t hurt. First quarter 2014 means it’ll be eligible for the 2015 Oscars instead of the next ones, but that’s just fine too.
You can read more detail over at Slashfilm.
The First Monuments Men trailer went for the fun and funny, this one goes right for the scope and the feels.
The problem with converting books into movies (or into stage shows or comics or, less frequently, games) is that the medium has certain elements that cannot be recreated. The level of depth and flow of language can only ever be from a certain perspective when flipped into the flesh of a different storytelling vehicle. Ask any Harry Potter fan for their favourite entry in the series and they’ll soon light their eyes with elements of the book that the film didn’t capture. The wonderful thing about books is that often they tell a story in a way that could not be expressed as fully in any other medium. These are the ones that capture us and leave us breathless at the end, mourning for the closure of the final page.
What’s so special about Gravity, then, is that it is a film equivalent. This story, these characters, this situation – none could be told with the same level of effectiveness in any other form (books included). Not only an easy contender for film of the year, Gravity is one of the finest pieces of filmmaking you’ll ever see, and God help you, see it on the big screen. It is the true definition of a “cinema movie”, the white-eyed airless immersion a vital tool in director Alfonso Cuarón’s approach.
Gravity is a movie about a disaster in space and feature striking visuals in director Alfonso Cuaron’s signature style of long takes. It looks absolutely terrifying.
Note: I watched the whole trailer and while I won’t go so far as to say it contains spoilers I believe I saw some flashes from the third act that, even out of context, I’m not sure I wanted to see in a trailer. So proceed with caution.
During World War II Europe was devastated and much of its history was in danger of being lost, destroyed at the hands of the Nazis. The Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives Program was an allied effort to save culturally important items before the Nazis could do that. George Clooney has directed a movie about that effort which looks pretty good. Let’s watch the trailer!
Remember the amazing long take sequences in Children of Men? It appears that director Alfonso Cuaron is going to give us more amazing single shot moments in his upcoming film Gravity. There’s two new trailers for the film now each of which is just one single shot from the movie and each of which is pretty much guaranteed to make you nauseous and want to see the film.