1-20 of 36 items from 2011 « Prev | Next »
Let's hear it for ladies of a certain age!
Mary Tyler Moore, television icon and an Oscar nominee for a terrifically icy variation on one of Oscar's favorite archetypes 'the monster mom' in Ordinary People (1980) turns 75 years old today. The last picture I can find of her out and about is the one to your left taken at the premiere of "Follies" starring Bernadette Peters (Do Not Miss It If you're In NYC!) which is just about the most appropriate show an aging diva can be seen at since it's all about aging showgirls looking back on their lives. (It's also one of the best musicals ever written but let's not get distracted...)
Mary Tyler Moore got me to thinking about the endurance of our beloved Best Actress nominees. There have been various media Oscar mash notes over the years that have claimed that winning an Oscar helps you live »
- NATHANIEL R
The films that weren't even given a shot at winning best picture
• Charles Saatchi: my love affair with Orson Welles
Here, in no particular order, is Charles Saatchi's list of the post-1950 films that should have been nominated for a best film Oscar. Tell us your picks below.
What's Up Doc?
Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?
2001: A Space Odyssey
Advise and Consent
King of Comedy
- Charles Saatchi
For this week's gold man column, we're skipping the general overview and getting really specific. Who doesn't enjoy a good zoom in on Meryl Streep? The Iron Lady, her Margaret Thatcher biopic performances, begins screening very soon -- they moved the release date back but not the screenings. So we need to discuss this before it does and the focus shifts from groundless speculation to case evidence.
Every time I've floated the notion that Meryl Streep cannot be an Iron Lock for a Best Actress nomination since her film has not been seen, people object. "But Meryl is Always nominated," sayeth everyone. Not so, not so. While it's true that The World's Greatest Actress™ seems as much a can't miss prospect in Best Actress as she did in the 80s what with nominations for Prada, Doubt and Julia fresh in our minds, she has missed the shortlist. Yes, even The »
- NATHANIEL R
Fandor's blog Keyframe just hosted a Guy Maddin blog-a-thon. Check it out.
Wow Report Mia Farrow makes a Lol. Best tweet ever?
Cinema Blend Katey interviews Andrew Haigh the writer/director of Weekend. I really enjoyed talking to him too (my interview if you haven't seen it) but I love the bit about his dialogue writing that she gets him to discuss 9/10 minutes in. Very interesting process he has! I should've asked him about that. The bane of interviews is always thinking of things »
- NATHANIEL R
Private letters from movie heartthrob James Dean to his then girlfriend, in which he criticises his latest Broadway show and speaks of being homesick as he films a box office hit, are to be sold at auction.
The handwritten notes to Barbara Glenn, whom he dated for two years, come from her family archive and have never been sold before.
Dean died in a car accident in 1955 as he was poised for major stardom, but continues to be a posterboy for Hollywood glamour.
The three letters are to be sold separately but are estimated to fetch a total of £16,000 when they are sold at Christie's in South Kensington, London, on November 23. The lots also include a number of photographs of the actor.
In one letter, dated January 10 1954, he tells Glenn about rehearsals for a Broadway adaptation of The Immoralist which he calls "a piece of s**t".
But the letter, »
- David Bentley
BuzzSugar community member pink-elephant posted the following review of East of Eden in The Book Club group, and it made me wonder if more of you have recently picked up and loved a classic read. Check out her post and share your own discoveries in the comments. I first received this book as a birthday present a few months ago, and all I can say is wow! I have literally not been able to put it down! I have already finished with one reading and am now halfway through my second reading. John Steinbeck is really a gifted author, and this story is among his finest works. And in my opinion, it's his best. It is a story that takes a modern stance on the original Cain and Abel tale. It speaks of love, hate, jealousy, favoritism, sibling rivalry and love, sin, choice, and redemption. An excellent read! Have you recently discovered a classic book? »
Montgomery Clift could have become a much bigger star had he turned down fewer roles in major classics (Sunset Blvd., reportedly Shane, East of Eden) and accepted fewer roles in major duds (The Big Lift, Lonelyhearts, The Defector). Clift has been a relatively frequent presence on Turner Classic Movies, but those unfamiliar with his work will be able to check him out — and compare him to fellow "'50s rebels" Marlon Brando and James Dean — on Saturday, August 20, as TCM will be presenting 11 Montgomery Clift movies as part of its "Summer Under the Stars" series. The one TCM premiere is the spy thriller The Defector (1966), which also happens to be Clift's last movie. [Montgomery Clift Movie Schedule.] My favorite Montgomery Clift performance is his quietly ambitious George Eastman in George Stevens' A Place in the Sun (1951). Though Marlon Brando's Stanley Kowalski from A Streetcar Named Desire (also 1951) is much better remembered today, »
- Andre Soares
As the world was slowly coming to terms with the devastating scale of the tragedy taking place in Norway over the weekend, news broke of a smaller-scale, but no less tragic event in Camden. At the ridiculously young age of 27 years old, Amy Winehouse had passed away, leaving behind memories and recordings of a singing voice and a performing ability that is surely peerless within her generation.
At times like this, as we mourn the loss of so imperious a talent and lament the waste of such rare potential, our minds turn to others cut off in their prime, people whose lives were lost before they had really got going. So I offer a few examples of screen actors who were lost to us before they had reached the heights to which they undoubtedly would have ascended. This is of course not to say that I don’t grieve the loss of many others, »
- Dave Roper
When I was 10 years old, my grandmother, with whom I went to the movies, took me to see "East of Eden" (she didn't believe in sheltering the young). I had already decided I wanted to be an actor, but that was mostly because I wanted to be in a Western and ride a horse and be kissed by the hero, so I'm not sure of the depth of my commitment until I saw Lois Smith play Anne in "East of Eden." The part is almost silent, but I remember not being able to take my eyes off Anne whenever she was in a scene, and I also remember thinking to myself, "That is what I want to do."Ms. Smith's performance was simple, perfectly true, and indelible. I'm not at all sure I've come anywhere near that in my own work, but it is still my goal. I was able. »
- email@example.com ()
Cinema Retro has received the following press release:
Special Auction Services (Newbury, UK) announce a one-day Auction of Entertainments Memorabilia on 30th July. Among the 600 Lots are 325+ Lots of Movie Posters & Memorabilia. Poster highlights include UK Quads for If, Easy Rider, St Trinians, 2001 A Space Odyssey, American Graffiti etc. There are also Us 1-Sheets for the likes of Psycho, East of Eden etc. Memorabilia includes Stills, Pressbooks & an original Script for Hitchcock's "The 39 Steps". The full Catalogue can be found at: http://www.specialauctionservices.com/viewProducts.php?cat_id=152&h_id=4&page=17 »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
Trevor Hogg profiles the career of legendary filmmaker George Lucas in the third of a six-part feature... read parts one and two.
“We both have a tradition that, when we have a film opening for which there are high expectations, we get out of town,” stated filmmaker Steven Spielberg, who vacationed with colleague George Lucas in Hawaii while Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977) and Star Wars (1977) were being theatrically released. Lucas asked Spielberg what he would like to do as his follow-up effort. “I said I wanted to do a James Bond film. United Artists had approached me after Sugarland Express  and asked me to do a film for them. I said, ‘Sure give me the next James Bond film.’ But they said they couldn’t do that. Then George said he had a film that was even better than a James Bond. It was called Raiders of the Lost Ark »
Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Elia Kazan’s filmic élan has pretty much been glossed over as a result of his notoriety in naming names to the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1952, which subsequently resulted in the career derailment of many of his fellow cinematic piers. One feels there is still much deep-seated contention however, with the memory Hollywood of stalwarts such as as Nick Nolte and Ed Harris looking disgruntled and refusing to applaud during Kazan’s honoury Oscar acceptance.
With the help of the archivist and researcher Kent Jones, Martin Scorsese attempts to restore some respect for the man who helped realise his love for the cinema and was also instrumental in igniting his own filmmaking career. A Letter to Elia closely analyses Kazan’s best known works including On the Waterfront, East of Eden, A Street Car Named Desire and (Scorsese’s personal favourite) America, America, along with »
- Oliver Pfeiffer
Although overshadowed by the entertainment juggernaut that is the Oscars, the Golden Globes has become an event in its own right over the years. The ceremony has drawn much criticism of late, with accusations that it caters to the stars in an effort to boost ratings. However, the awards have generally favoured commerciality over independent film - and that has not always been a bad thing.
In fact, the Golden Globes' larger programme of awards and extended categories no doubt influenced the Oscars' decision to once again extend its Best Picture category to include ten nominations, consequently opening the field to more commercial fare.
Now in its 68th year, the Globes has often managed to supersede its older more prestigious sibling in both its choice of nominations and ultimate winners. Therefore, as a reminder to all the naysayers that think the ceremony is just a narcissistic pat on the back of an already over-indulgent industry, »
Knowing where great artists get their inspiration is something that’s of interest to many people. I’m not sure why that is; maybe knowing where ideas come from can lead to a greater understanding of a work, while it could also serve as an influence to aspiring artists themselves.
Martin Scorsese knows more about the history of film than most of the directors who have ever lived, so he’s certainly had many great works permeate themselves into his extensive output. However, it seems like one filmmaker in particular had an impact on him that we’re still seeing to this day: Elia Kazan.
While that’s (sadly) not a name that many will recognize right away, he’s responsible for some of the best movies of his time. On the Waterfront, A Streetcar Named Desire, A Face in the Crowd - all of these are great films that have endured to this day. »
- Nick Newman
One way and another, in the middle decades of the 20th century, Elia Kazan became a central figure in American culture. He offered himself as the archetypal despised immigrant who had made it in the new world. He had been born in Istanbul in 1909 and he arrived in New York in 1913 as the son of a rug merchant. He was smart, hugely ambitious, drawn to women, and an inspiring conspirator (and betrayer) with guys. He went to a good school, Williams College in Massachusetts, but felt looked down on by the upper-class white girls. So he slept with them, and he excelled at every competitive urging. In the early 30s he apprenticed to the Group Theater as an actor, a possible director and a handyman who could fix physical problems – chairs, »
- David Thomson
Martin Scorsese has chosen the upcoming London International Documentary Film Festival to host the UK premiere of his so-called "labour of love" Letter to Elia.
This highly personal feature documentary looks at the life and influence of Greek-American director/actor Elia Kazan. Scorsese (pictured) recalls how seeing Kazan's On the Waterfront and East of Eden was a life-changing experience for himself as a young man growing up in Little Italy.
He takes us through Kazan's life and his own as well, and his growing realisation that there was an artist behind the camera, "someone who knew me better than I knew myself."
Letter to Elia is about being exposed to the right movies at the right moment in adolescence and being inspired to chart a course into filmmaking.
- David Bentley
Trying to get Hollywood to change direction is not unlike trying to steer an elephant by poking it in its thick-hided ass with a matchstick; it doesn’t exactly respond like a Maserati.
And that’s a problem because there are some box office signs suggesting the American movie industry needs – may, in fact, desperately need, and soon – to change the path it’s been cannon-balling along on since the late 1970s. Unfortunately, Hollywood’s history suggests nobody should hold their breath waiting for someone to turn the wheel until after that bus has gone over a cliff. American moviemaking is great at glomming on to technological innovation – Dolby sound, 3-D, CGI — anything that brings in a crowd by offering a showier show. The industry’s track record on what to do when the crowd stops coming — on divining and interpreting and appropriately responding to changes in the cultural landscape — is, »
- Bill Mesce
Ignoring for a moment the not-so-small matter of an unknown bride, the identity of Barney's (Neil Patrick Harris) dad on "How I Met Your Mother" is possibly the biggest unanswered question of the series -- and definitely of Season 6. But on Mar. 21, we'll finally come face-to-face.
Emmy and Tony winner John Lithgow makes his first appearance in "Legendaddy" as the Barney's estranged father, Jerry. And speaking with Zap2it about his two scheduled appearances, Lithgow explains that the serious themes explored this season keep coming with his cameo.
"It is very intense," Lithgow tells us. "If this weren't a comedy, it would be 'East of Eden' or something. He's the lost father. There's a pool of serious emotional stuff underpinning all of the comedy. [Barney] is what he is, in so many ways, because he was abandoned by his father. We make comedy out of that, but »
At 14, Jamie Bell beat 2,000 hopefuls to play Billy Elliot. A decade later, the boy from Billingham has 16 films under his belt and has worked with Clint Eastwood and Peter Jackson. But this summer he stars in Steven Spielberg's Tintin – which is where, he says, the whole incredible adventure began
In a low-lit rum bar in a fashionably shabby corner of West Hollywood, Jamie Bell recalls the first time he saw a film in a cinema. "It was Jurassic Park," he says. "I was eight years old and I was terrified because, you know – dinosaurs! They're real!" He tells a good story. Plenty of animation. And the louder he gets the more Geordie his accent. "At the end, the credits said: 'Directed by Steven Spielberg' and I thought: 'Ok, I'm going to remember that name. Because he's done something to me here, something important.'"
Sixteen years later, it's happening again. »
Legendary director Elia Kazan (A Tree Grows in Brooklyn; Gentlemen's Agreement; A Streetcar Named Desire; On the Waterfront; East of Eden) once said that, of all his films, this one was his favorite. That's not surprising when you consider how personal a project this was for him. America, America chronicles the true-life story of Elia Kazan's uncle, who suffered many setbacks during his arduous journey from his war-torn homeland to a new life in America.
Although the story deals with a very private and personal subject, Elia Kazan films it on an epic scale. The story spans several countries and many years. The film beautifully captures the obsessive determination of a man who will let nothing stop him from getting what he wants. The story works on a grander scale than most of Kazan's other films, which are focused on a specific place. This is a character driven story »
- Rob Young
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