Archive | September 2010

25 best septuagenarian-plus performances

Seeing as though the senior crowd is all the rage in Hollywood of late, it’s only fitting that a 25 best be dedicated to the all-time best performances by actors 70 and over. In my searching, I found that it’s a rare feat that Hollywood allows this magic to happen, but on the rare occasion non-twentysomethings garner some spotlight, magic can happen – peruse away!

25. John Gielgud (Arthur, 1981)
24. James Garner (Space Cowboys, 2000)
23. Estelle Harris (Toy Story 2, 1999)
22. Vincent Price (The Great Mouse Detective, 1986)
21. Maureen O’Sullivan (Hannah and Her Sisters, 1986)

20. Bette Davis (The Whales of August, 1987)
19. Christopher Lee (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship…, 2001)
18. Jean Stapleton (You’ve Got Mail, 1998)
17. May Robson (Bringing Up Baby, 1938)
16. Lillian Gish (The Whales of August, 1987)

15. Alice Drummond (Pieces of April, 2003)
14. Carroll O’Connor (Return to Me, 2000)
13. Molly Picon (Fiddler on the Roof, 1971)
12. Richard Harris (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, 2001)
11. Hal Holbrook (Into the Wild, 2007)

10. Lauren Bacall (The Mirror Has Two Faces, 1996)
9. Ed Asner (Up, 2009)
8. Lois Smith (Minority Report, 2002)
7. Alan Arkin (Little Miss Sunshine, 2006)
6. Glynis Johns (While You Were Sleeping, 1995)

5. Gwen Verdon (Marvin’s Room, 1996)
4. Katharine Hepburn (On Golden Pond, 1981)
3. Eartha Kitt (The Emperor’s New Groove, 2000)
2. Henry Fonda (On Golden Pond, 1981)
1. Judi Dench (Notes on a Scandal, 2006)

Who am I missing? Who are your favorite active seniors?
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the product placement quiz #1

**All right you guys, pretty self-explanatory, but tell me… which film did this blatant product placement effort come from and which character/actor is holding the wee can?  Riddle me that, bloggers!**

best films: #22: MONSTERS, INC. (2001)

To call it utterly unique, innovative, and groundbreaking is an understatement.  And as I sit and ponder how little credit it received where credit was due (it’s less-than-genius, more famous 2001 counterpart Shrek pales immensely in comparison to this achievement), Monsters, Inc. goes down in my own personal record books as one of the most underrated gems of this past decade.  From the insanely intricate animation (that quivering blue fur was more realistic than anything 3-D has to offer) to the other-worldly premise, the people at Pixar outdid themselves here.  They’ve created an entirely different world that’s never been thought up before (more than you can say for Shrek‘s easy sight gags and dated pop culture references), and Monstropolis is a nirvana of detail and depth.  And leave it to Randy Newman to deliver yet another successful soundtrack/score to the Pixar folks.  When others will choose a throwaway Smash Mouth song as an anthem, Newman ignites the comedic talents and showmanship of John Goodman and Billy Crystal to great effect (and garnered a much-deserved Oscar for Best Original Song, I may add).  Mike, with his mono-ocular demeanor and sardonic wit, pairs so effortlessly with Sully, the big lug with a heart of gold.  And even though detractors may say it slips into far-too-cutesy territory with its third member of the central trio, adorable human toddler Boo, I see her as an essential part of Sully’s character; she’s the purely joyous glee he never realized existed (or that he could elicit in another person).  So though the animation studio has churned out success after success since 2001, Monsters, Inc. remains possibly the greatest testament to the depths of their writing, nay dreaming, abilities.

20 best movie clothes horses

We all know Hollywood is known for its glamour and glitz, but in the fictional venue, it’s time to muse over which gals could rock the best wardrobes. Here are my 20 favorite – which costume donner got left off most heinously??

20. Evelyn Mulrway (Faye Dunaway) in Chinatown (1974)
19. Vivian Ward (Julia Roberts) in Pretty Woman (1990)
18. Billie Dawn (Judy Holliday) in Born Yesterday (1950)
17. Eliane (Catherine Deneuve) in Indochine (1992)

16. Helen Schlegel (Helena Bonham Carter) in Howards End (1992)
15. Selina Kyle (Michelle Pfeiffer) in Batman Returns (1992)
14. Cathy Whitaker (Julianne Moore) in Far From Heaven (2002)
13. Mrs. Robinson (Anne Bancroft) in The Graduate (1967)

12. Karen Blixen (Meryl Streep) in Out of Africa (1985)
11. Cecilia Tallis (Keira Knightley) in Atonement (2007)
10. Rose Dewitt Bukater (Kate Winslet) in Titanic (1997)
9. Lisa Carol Fremont (Grace Kelly) in Rear Window (1954)

8. Alicia Huberman (Ingrid Bergman) in Notorious (1946)
7. Cher Horowitz (Alicia Silverstone) in Clueless (1995)
6. Susan Vance (Katharine Hepburn) in Bringing Up Baby (1938)
5. Jean Brodie (Maggie Smith) in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969)

4. Belle (Paige O’Hara) in Beauty and the Beast (1991)
3. Miranda Priestley (Meryl Streep) in The Devil Wears Prada (2006)
2. Holly Golightly (Audrey Hepburn) in Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)
1. Scarlett O’Hara (Vivien Leigh) in Gone with the Wind (1939)

september oscar talk

Well it’s that time of year, folks. As the September doldrums ensue with their crappy throwaway horror romps and movies that the studios have no faith in, it’s about time to focus on that glimmer of hope known as October, November, and December (before, of course, the inevitable equally crappy January swarms in). As the year comes to its big finish, my mind is ticking away at what the big nominees will be at the upcoming Academy Awards. Here are my current predictions (in order of my confidence in them) – make your revisions down there in the comments!

Best Picture
Inception, The King’s Speech, The Way Back, Toy Story 3, 127 Hours,
Another Year, The Town, True Grit, Black Swan,The Kids Are All Right

Best Director
Peter Weir (The Way Back), Danny Boyle (127 Hours),
Christopher Nolan (Inception), Mike Leigh (Another Year),
Ben Affleck (The Town)

Best Lead Actress
Annette Bening (The Kids Are All Right), Naomi Watts (Fair Game),
Natalie Portman (Black Swan), Diane Lane (Secretariat),
Nicole Kidman (Rabbit Hole)

Best Lead Actor
Colin Firth (The King’s Speech), Robert Duvall (Get Low),
Sean Penn (Fair Game), Jim Broadbent (Another Year),
Jeff Bridges (True Grit)

Best Supporting Actress
Helena Bonham Carter (The King’s Speech)
Kristin Scott Thomas (Nowhere Boy), Lesley Manville (Another Year)
Rebecca Hall (The Town), Marion Cotillard (Inception)

Best Supporting Actor
Ed Harris (The Way Back), Jeremy Renner (The Town),
Geoffrey Rush (The King’s Speech), Bill Murray (Get Low),
Mark Ruffalo (The Kids Are All Right)

casting crew: the INGRID BERGMAN story

It’s been ages since I’ve done a Casting Crew, and they are generally reserved for potential big-screen adaptations of popular 60s and 70s sitcoms. But in honor of Ms. Bergman’s recent birthday (and date of death, strangely enough) on August 29, I thought I’d take a stab at casting an Ingrid Bergman biopic, including some major players in her life. Shower me with gripes about my casting choices and your own picks in the comments!

Kate Winslet as Ingrid Bergman

Andy Garcia as Roberto Rossellini

Gabriel Byrne as Humphrey Bogart

Alexis Bledel as Isabella Rossellini

George Clooney as Cary Grant

Chris Cooper as Michael Curtiz

25 potential film-based real estate investments

Okay, so since I’ve been MIA of late, I thought I had some ‘splaining to do. It turns out when you’re in career limbo you find yourself bouncing from residence to residence until the big take-off comes. And in honor of that lovely experience, I present to you my 25 most optimum film residences. Pardon me while I contact my realtor…

25. The Pink Palace Apartments
Coraline (2009)

24. The Kirke Mansion
The Chronicles of Narnia (2005)

23. Hoggett Farm
Babe (1995)

22. Erica’s Beach House
Something’s Gotta Give (2003)

21. Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters
X-Men (2000)

20. Aunt Josephine’s House
Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004)

19. The Deetz House
Beetle Juice (1988)

18. The Von Trapp Mansion
The Sound of Music (1965)

17. 742 Evergreen Terrace
The Simpsons Movie (2007)

16. The Rose Bush
The Secret of NIMH (1982)

15. The McCallister House
Home Alone (1990)

14. Boddy Mansion
Clue (1985)

13. The Palace at Agrabah
Aladdin (1992)

12. Lords Manor
The Philadelphia Story (1940)

11. Hill House
The Haunting (1999)

10. Whipstaff Manor
Casper (1995)

9. Howards End
Howards End (1992)

8. Carl and Ellie’s House
Up (2009)

7. Manderley
Rebecca (1940)

6. Pemberley
Pride & Prejudice (2005)

5. The Axiom
WALL-E (2008)

4. The Beast’s Castle
Beauty and the Beast (1991)

3. Tara
Gone with the Wind (1939)

2. Bag End
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

1. Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001)

**Now tell me, which big-screen properties are you most interested in snatching up??**