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  1. 9 points
    This may be of some interest to some around here: FX has set the main cast for the eight-episode limited series “Fosse/Verdon,” Variety has learned. The series is based on the biography “Fosse” written by Sam Wasson and tells the story of the romantic and creative partnership between Bob Fosse(Sam Rockwell) and Gwen Verdon (Michelle Williams). Norbert Leo Butz has been cast in the series regular role of Paddy Chayefsky, while Margaret Qually will appear in the series regular role of Ann Reinking. In addition, the following people have been cast in recurring roles: Aya Cash as Joan Simon, Nate Corddry as Neil Simon, Susan Misner as Joan McCracken, Bianca Marroquin as Chita Rivera, Kelli Barrett as Liza Minnelli, Evan Handler as Hal Prince, Rick Holmes as Fred Weaver, Paul Reiser as Cy Feuer, Ethan Slater as Joel Grey, Byron Jennings as George Abbott, and Laura Osnes as Shirley MacLaine. See full article at Variety »
  2. 7 points
    Just the thought of Lucille Ball nude makes my head feel Desi.
  3. 6 points
    The Italian filmmaker Bernardo Bertolucci, who won Academy Awards for directing and co-writing "The Last Emperor" (1987), died of cancer Monday in Rome. He was 77. He also was known for several other cinematic achievements, including "The Conformist" (1970), "Last Tango in Paris" (1972), "1900" (1976), "The Sheltering Sky" (1990), "Little Buddha" (1993), "Stealing Beauty" (1996) and "The Dreamers" (2003). "The Last Emperor" was the story of Pu-Yi (1906-1967) -- the last ruler of China's Qing dynasty. His reign was upended by tumultuous events of the 20th century. The drama starred John Lone as the adult version of the title character. Also appearing in the film were Joan Chen, Peter O'Toole, Ying Ruocheng, Victor Wong, Dennis Dun, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Maggie Han and Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa. The film pulled off a rare achievement at the 60th Academy awards ceremony held on April 11, 1988. It won in all nine categories for which it had been nominated. The Oscar wins were as follows: Best Picture (producer Jeremy Thomas). Best Director (Bertolucci). Best Adapted Screenplay (Bertolucci and Mark Peploe). Best Costume Design (James Acheson). Best Cinematography (Vittorio Storaro). Best Art Direction (Ferdinando Scarfiotti, art direction; Bruno Cesari and Osvaldo Desideri, set decoration). Best Film Editing (Gabriella Cristiani). Best Original Score (Ryuichi Sakamoto, David Byrne and Cong Su). Best Sound (Bill Rowe and Ivan Sharrock). The nine-for-nine sweep at the Academy Awards duplicated the feat 29 years earlier by Vincente Minnelli's 1958 musical production "Gigi." It won nine awards (and an honorary statuette for Maurice Chevalier) at the 31st Oscars ceremony held on April 6, 1959. At the 76th Academy Awards on February 29, 2004, Peter Jackson's "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" received an unprecedented 11 awards in 11 categories, including Best Picture. Bertolucci's most controversial film was "Last Tango in Paris," the graphic study of an affair in The City of Light between an American expatriate (Marlon Brando) and a young Frenchwoman (Maria Schneider). The film received 1973 Academy Award nominations for Best Director (Bertolucci) and Best Actor (Brando, one year after he rejected an Oscar for "The Godfather"). But the picture was a target for censors because of its sexual content. Bertolucci later drew the ire of feminists because of his treatment of his leading actress. Before her death from cancer in 2011, Schneider -- who turned 20 while the movie was filmed -- acknowledged that the picture had made her an international star. But she said it also ruined her career. I was too young to know better," the actress told London's Daily Mail in 2007. "Marlon later said that he felt manipulated, and he was Marlon Brando, so you can imagine how I felt. People thought I was like the girl in the movie, but that wasn't me. "I felt very sad because I was treated like a sex symbol - I wanted to be recognized as an actress and the whole scandal and aftermath of the film turned me a little crazy and I had a breakdown. "Now, though, I can look at the film and like my work in it." In 2013, it was revealed that Bertolucci admitted in a video interview that he and Brando deliberately did not inform Schneider about a notorious simulated sex scene that involved a stick of butter. Bertolucci said he wanted her reaction "as a girl, not as an actress." The revelation drew widespread criticism. "To all the people that love this film - you're watching a 19yr old get raped by a 48yr old man," tweeted the actress Jessica Chastain. "The director planned her attack. I feel sick." Schneider and Brando in "Last Tango in Paris" In 2003, another Parisian actress -- the smokey-eyed Eva Green -- attained stardom in a Bertolucci film. She appeared in "The Dreamers," the story of fraternal twins (played by Green and the French actor Louis Garrel) who bonded with an American exchange student (Michael Pitt) during the 1968 student riots in Paris. Green once admitted that she was wary of the film's nude scenes and Bertolucci's reputation as a taskmaster, but agreed to do the film over the objections of her mother and her agent. As she told London's The Independent in 2003: "I am very sensitive, a very reserved person and very shy, and this was my very first movie and Bernardo had this reputation for being...not Hitler, but quite tough with the actors." In her experiences with Bertolucci, she discovered that his reputation was undeserved. "He was very sweet, a little Buddha," she said. "He's very wise. He can see through you. He can detect your weak spots." Green in "The Dreamers" Philip Bagnall‏ @CynicalFilm This shot, and so many others, seared on the brain. R.I.P. Bernardo Bertolucci. Eva Green Web‏ @EvaGreenWeb A message from Eva on Bernardo Bertolucci’s passing: "We are so lightly here. It is in Love that we are made; In Love, we disappear" (quote from Boogie Street, Leonard Cohen) My Bernardo d'Amour, Je t'aime Eva Carrie Rickey‏ @CarrieRickey From last tangos and last emperors and conformists to dreamers, #BernardoBertolucci created electrifying movies. His epitaph should be the epigraph from Before the Revolution: "Those who have not lived before the revolution cannot know the true sweetness of life." #RIP Jeva Lange‏Verified account@Jee_vuh THE CONFORMIST is one of my all-time favorites; I remember seeing it for the first time with my jaw on the floor. This original one-sheet, hanging in our living room, is one of my most prized possessions. Thank you for the mad and beautiful dreams, Bernardo Bertolucci. Guillermo del Toro‏Verified account@RealGDT "The Conformist" by Bertolucci, one of the Coen Brothers' favorite films.
  4. 6 points
    More on The Killing: The two stand-outs in this great cast ( they're all stand-outs, really), are, of course, Marie Windsor and Timothy Carey. As Looney noted, Marie Windsor is fantastic in this; could anyone do straight-out b1tch the way she could? (By the way, why did she marry Elisha's character, anyway? I love the way she compares their marriage to Aspirin !) Also, for no apparent reason, there's a parrot in their apartment. This is fun; the parrot seems to just be there for added weirdness, and it works. (Like, when Elisha falls and drags the parrot cage with him. At least the parrot is unharmed !) Timothy Carey: oh, what a weirdo. I love the way this guy specializes in making strange squinty faces and slurry speech. The moments between him and the parking lot guard are painful; when Nick reveals his true nature, snarling racist insults at the guy, it's shocking. Here you think, "great, it's 1956 and a black guy's interacting in a position of authority with a white guy. There even seems to be some mutual respect." But then of course, Nick ruins it all with his poisonous snarl. You can't feel sorry when he gets it from the guard. Oh, The Killing is so good, I could go on. But I'll just make one more observation: there's a touching scene, just before the heist, where the old guy who's one of the gang and an old friend of Johnny's, suggests maybe they could go away together afterwards, just the two of them, and you realize he has feelings for Johnny. There aren't many gay characters in noirs (although more than you might think), so it's interesting to see this sad little scene.
  5. 6 points
    I agree with Looney about The Killing - it's very good. This was about the fourth time I'd seen it, and it never gets tired. Random thoughts about it: When you watch a heist movie, you notice it's always the little things, the things that even the smartest heist -master couldn't have foreseen, that mess it all up. "The best- laid plans....go aft awry." For instance, poor old Elisha Cook can't resist the importunings of his horrible wife to find out more about the heist. Sterling Hayden's character ("Johnny Clay" - I love that name !) is smart, he should have seen Elisha's weakness and maybe chosen a different race track teller to be in on his plan. He certainly seemed to know what his hard-as-nails wife was all about. You just know when Marie wheedles it out of her poor sap husband that he's in on some kind of robbery that's going to yield big bucks that the whole thing is going to go pear-shaped. Other "little details" that ruin everything: Oh, Johnny Clay, why didn't you invest in a brand new really reliable suitcase? Or at least two smallish carrier bags - also brand new, with good locks. You just know something bad's going to happen with that second-hand bag when he keeps having trouble locking it. Of course the fact that's it's bursting with money doesn't help. But even that might have worked out, had it not been for that obnoxious little dog ( and his equally obnoxious, vacuous owner), who decides to take a run at the baggage car, thus causing the precariously fastened suitcase to fall and release its precious and damning contents all over the runway. Then there's that nice, decent parking lot guard, who makes the mistake of trying to be friendly and helpful to weirdo unpredictable Timothy Carey. Johnny Clay couldn't have foreseen that that particular parking lot, the one with such a good view of the racetrack, would have been closed that day, and that Carey would have to interact with the guard to get him to allow him to park there. Yeah, it's the little details that you can't predict that usually ruin a heist.
  6. 6 points
    No ... no ... it's for posting youtube videos from crackpots, tweets from people no one has ever heard of, and dumping on Trump. Get with the program, man.
  7. 6 points
    I hadn't seen Woman in the Window for a while, and this time around enjoyed it even more than my previous viewings. Random thoughts: Yeah, cigarjoe, I noticed the n1pple-revealing dress too. As you say, perhaps at the time the film was made, such, er, details would not have been noticeable. Oh well, just adds to Joan's already alluring sexiness. Dan Duryea: Damn, I love this guy ! I love his tall lithe form, what they used to call "a tall glass of milk", although in Dan's case, maybe more like a tall glass of whiskey and soda, with a little poison added for good measure. I love the way Dan always seems gentle, reasonable, at first. He's a nice guy, doesn't want to cause anybody any trouble. He just wants to blackmail them, Hey, a guy's got to make a living. I really enjoy his silky smooth way of speaking; it makes it all the more interesting when he suddenly switches gears and gets nasty. Silky to gritty in a minute. And I really like the way his character suddenly, just out of his bad guy's suspicious intuition, starts to suspect that his drink is poisoned. Joan's character is no match for him, any more than Lazy Legs is in Scarlet Street. I love Dan's combination of smart and ruthless and silky-smooth. The murder: Why, oh why, do people in these movies always try to hide their nasty deed, rather than call the police? Because then there wouldn't be any movie, of course. I'm talking about many, many noir plots, including this one, where someone is being attacked and ends up killing someone. The attacker is intent on killing them, it's either them or the hero(protagonist, if you prefer.) So the one being attacked naturally, when handed a gun or, in this case, a pair of scissors, defends themselves by using the weapon at hand. It's self defence. Yet, of course they always feel as guilty as if it had been outright murder, "the police will never believe us", that kind of thing. And /or, as in Edward G.'s case in The Woman in the Window, he feels that even if they believe his plead of self-defence and he's exonerated, his life will be ruined - career, marriage, family, reputation, all down the tubes. All this, and he didn't so much as kiss the girl. I thought Eddie's comments about how there was much more potential humour in the story than Fritz Lang allowed for was revealing. My favourite noirs are those that are also kind of funny - bleak, maybe, violent, ok, but hey, that doesn't mean there's no room for a little humour, a bit of witty, sardonic dialogue or fun with character bits. We get a hint of it, but I guess Lang squashed most of it out of the final product. Too bad. And I love Fritz Lang, don't get me wrong. Joan Bennett: Oh, Joan, you were so good. I wish she'd been in even more noirs, she was made for this type of movie. I love the way she kind of drawls her lines. In her way, she's as silky smooth as Duryea. You do have to wonder why such a babe would have flirted with someone like Eddie and lured him in for a drink and to see her etchings. Maybe she was tired of her nasty brutish sugar daddy who never took her out anywhere and was thinking of making a switch. (Not realizing that Eddie's professor job wouldn't have yielded much sugar....) We never really find out, because of course the two of them get into trouble almost immediately (as I said, before Eddie gets to so much as kiss her) and the rest of the story is how they try to stumble through disposing of the evidence, etc. It's a little - but just a little - like Double Indemnity, but with Eddie as the Fred MacMurray character, and Eddie's role as the investigator and friend of the guilty guy being played by Raymond Massey. Maybe that's a bit of a stretch, the similarities end there. Hey, anyone notice how this is the second film - both directed by Fritz Lang - where Dan's handling a pair of scissors? Remember how he's playing a tailor ( as a cover) in Ministry of Fear, and he strides around with this enormous pair of scissors in his hands? True, in Woman in the Window he just picks them up for a minute while he's rummaging through Joan's things, but still, it reminded me of that scene in Ministry of Fear. (Also, there's something intimate, creepy, about Dan's going through Joan's personal dressers, touching her stockings, etc. I'm sure it's on purpose.) Anyway, fun movie. Lots more to say about it, but I don't want to be a hog. Oh, the ending...life, what is it, but a dream? (Lewis Carroll)
  8. 6 points
  9. 5 points
  10. 5 points
    I'm not sure, but there is a Ben Mankiewicz ornament that, when a button is pressed, will play audio clips of Ben's most hilarious one-liners and observations from the last year's TCM intros and outros. I ordered six dozen for Dargo.
  11. 5 points
    To even make such an offer is a felony under U.S. law. Offering something of value to a foreign government. Several pundits have already cited the exact statute. The offer doesn't even have to succeed for it to be a felony. And could Michael Cohen offer something worth $50 million of Donald Trump's money to someone without Donald Trump even knowing about it? Come on ... Only the extremely gullible would buy that one. (38% of Americans apparently).
  12. 5 points
    The Hill‏Verified accou@thehill Trump predicts he’ll "never" get the Nobel Peace Prize http://hill.cm/LtFtxGC
  13. 5 points
    I don't know anything about the new film, but Bob Fosse's film autobiography is his life. For anybody who is seriously involved in dance, it is a dream come true to see how the greatest choreographer of my generation viewed his own life and his life's work. What I thought was particularly interesting was how he started out, a teenager, tap dancing in strip clubs in Chicago, getting as far as starring roles in MGM movies and then realizing his limitations-- and then going on to be the greatest Broadway choreographer of the post-war era. For those of us who stood in the wings dance- wise, this was an unbelievable opportunity to look out on what we could only imagine was going on in the big time. I think it does what none of those other dance musicals have achieved, it shows just the amount of hard work and stress that it takes to go into dancing. This movie is all about dance and the kind of sacrifices that people make for it. Also it's about how a professional dance career affected his personal life. You only have to look at people like the great New York City Ballet choreographer George Balanchine, who married every one of his great ballerinas, except the last one-- and that's a story-- To know that dancers are inextricably tied to their life's work to the point that it controls and dictates their personal life. I wish you would look at Fred Astaire's AFI Awards presentation. Bob Fosse is one of the lead guest speakers. He explains not only what Fred Astaire meant to him but what dance meant to him. If you look at any of these great dancers paying homage to Fred Astaire, people like Gene Kelly, Eleanor Powell and Baryshnikov, you'll get a feeling for how much dance controlled their lives. And you have to wonder how much they were left with in the end. PS: Through it all, you know Bob Fosse never divorced Gwen Verdon.
  14. 5 points
    Could Days of Wine and Roses be considered a Pinot Noir?
  15. 5 points
    The cards were a parody in response to the Cabbage Patch doll craze during the 1983-84 time period. I'll never forget that era, not to be outdone until Tickle Me Elmo. So those dolls were the cause of the Black Friday madness! https://www.rediscoverthe80s.com/2014/11/black-friday-origins-1983-cabbage-patch.html
  16. 5 points
    Battle of Chile - This documentary follows the last days of Salvador Allende as he was ousted from power by the US backed Pinochet. His funding for this film was frozen after Pinochet took power so he was funded in part to complete it with money from Chris Marker in France. This is a good, informative documentary that shows the unrest in the last days. The full trilogy has been on TCM before.
  17. 5 points
    As a "wuzzy millennial" (I guess), I agree that this new Grinch looks too nice and too cuddly. This is like "baby Grinch" or something. They even butchered the classic "You're a Mean One Mr. Grinch." Nobody can replace Thurl Ravenscroft's original. Boris Karloff also has such a sinister sounding voice, something that works perfect for the Grinch character. I can't say that Benedict Cumberbatch has that same quality. I also disliked the Jim Carrey version. The 1966 Grinch cartoon is the one I grew up watching every single year and is the only one that I make a point of watching. The Jim Carrey one seems to have developed this cult following among the younger Millennials/Gen Z that I cannot get behind. The simplicity of the original Chuck Jones illustrations of the 1966 cartoon is one of my favorite aspects of the cartoon. Who needs a complicated background? Just make the background blue, or yellow, or pink, etc. Everything these days is CGI'd to death, to the point where the CGI isn't even impressive, it's just boring. I also love A Charlie Brown Christmas and the other Peanuts cartoons for that matter, because the animation (at least the actual drawing of the characters and backgrounds) isn't perfect. 101 Dalmatians (1961) is also charming because in the animation, the artists colored out of the lines, but in an artistic fashion, not just because they're terrible at coloring. It gives the film a different aesthetic.
  18. 5 points
    Yes, especially since it's the only one that actually looks like the original Suess drawings. Every incarnation feels the need to elaborate on the master work, while Chuck Jones kept the very spirit of Suess' simple story & charming illustrations.
  19. 5 points
  20. 5 points
    The Daily Beast‏Verified accou@thedailybeast BREAKING: Trump claims he "did not know" Whitaker's views on the Russia probe https://www.thedailybeast.com/trump-claims-he-did-not-know-whitakers-views-on-russia-probe
  21. 5 points
    Full disclosure: I am a big Orson Welles fan. I saw The Other Side of the Wind yesterday at the Dolby screening room in Soho, London. I mention the venue because it was under optimal conditions. I’m thankful to say that I wasn’t disappointed. I thought it was fantastic and such a fitting movie to end Orson’s career. I met Gary Graver in the mid-90’s when he was trying to secure the rights to finish the film. I offered to join his team if he was successful. Though many of the cast and crew have not lived to see the film’s completion including Gary I think they all would be very happy with the outcome mounted by Peter Bogdanovich, Frank Marshall and others. If it were not for the revolution in Iran Welles’ may have been able to finish the film himself. One of the financiers was related to the Shah and come the revolution the negative was seized. TOSOTW has all of Welles’ favourite themes: the downfall of a great man and betrayal by those who surround him. The film is very complete which is an astounding achievement given that it was filmed over so many years with its plan completely in Welles’ head. John Huston joined the project after most of it had already been filmed and his lead character is inserted into the existing material. Likewise, the supporting lead played by Rich Little was recast with Bogdanovich and completely reshot. I think if the film had been released in the seventies it would have, or rather should have created a big slash. Its use of all sorts of film stocks and black and white and colour predates Oliver Stone’s “groundbreaking” use of the same in JFK (1991) by almost twenty years. The constant buzz of the paparazzi-like cameras and the lightning fast cutting is equal to Scorsese. And its shakey-cam verite style predates the rise of the same in the eighties with such shows as Hill Street Blues (1981). It has plenty of Welles’ humour too. He has fun taking the p*** with his critics. His film within a film is a nudie homage to Euro art house films like Zabriskie Point and Model Shop. It has an incredible sex in a car scene with Oja Kodar that Welles’ edited himself made even more incredible if you know it was shot in a driveway with a garden hose and assistants walking with lights to mock passing cars. I can see that some may think the film a bit of a mess. It is dense and should encourage one to want to see it again. As if winking about this himself, when the film within a film is being screened at a drive-in one character complains to the projectionist that the reels are out of order. He replies “does it matter?” Michel Legrand's score is terrific and Bob Murawski’s co-editing an award worthy achievement. And there is the fun of seeing new work by some familiar faces. Edmond O’Brien is very good. Cameron Mitchell, Paul Stewart, Susan Strasberg, Mercedes McCambridge, George Jessel and Peter Bogdanovich also feature. Lilli Palmer plays a character so obviously written for Marlene Dietrich (she wasn’t available at the time). Friend Norman Foster plays a toad assistant to John Huston’s director not unlike Joseph Calleia character in Touch of Evil (1958). But for me the standout in the cast is unheralded character actor Dan Tobin who plays a teacher who comes from a school known for pedophilia. I just went with the film’s flow and really enjoyed it. I think Welles’ would have loved the digital age and being able to control his own projects. Now if only the original cut of The Magnificent Ambersons would turn up in a Brazilian lab.
  22. 5 points
    Sorry Tobia, but I'm gonna disagree with ya here. One of the things I've always wished ALL the TCM hosts did WAS to lengthen their intros and out-tros, as I've always felt there was much MUCH more that could've been said about even the most over-shown films that this channel broadcasts! And hell for THAT matter and regarding Eddie, AT LEAST Eddie doesn't have a nasally voice like Ben does. (...and even THEN I wouldn't mind hearing BEN go on a little more about these movies in his intros than the limited amount of time they've always allotted him and all the other hosts, past and present)
  23. 5 points
  24. 4 points
    And don't forget the original source of the Trump family fortune: running brothels in Seattle and the Yukon during the gold rush there. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Trump#Emigration_to_the_United_States
  25. 4 points
    Re: Blackface. So much to comment on. I don't want to quote everyone, because that'd just be too complicated. I have watched White Christmas at least two dozen times, two times even in the last month. I don't recall a blackface scene? Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and Rosemary Clooney perform the "Mr. Bones" song and perform minstrel jokes. Vera-Ellen performs a dance to "Mandy." I don't recall anyone in the scene donning blackface. Holiday Inn however... oy vey. I don't advocate censorship, so I'm on the fence about the "Abraham" number. It's so bad. I can't remember, is there a Valentine's Day number? Even if Bing had dressed up like Lincoln and sang about freeing the slaves--it'd have been better than Bing being a slave himself. I don't know. Maybe they could have done a Groundhog's Day number. I do believe that the "Abraham" song is one of the weaker efforts in the film. The worst part of the number, imo, are Marjorie Reynolds' big white lips. Ugh! Blackface seems even worse with the white lips. One of my favorites is the Washington's birthday dance where conductor Bing keeps changing up the tempo on dancer Fred. I also like Fred's 4th of July number. Looking at the films through a modern lens, most of the blackface scenes are unnecessary. In a couple films, like Fred Astaire's tribute to Bill "Mr. Bojangles" Robinson in Swing Time, it isn't that bad and at least Fred wasn't wearing the big white lips, but he could have easily tributed Bill Robinson without blackface. Eleanor Powell also performs a tribute to Robinson in Honolulu, but she chose to add the big white lips. At least Fred and Eleanor's tributes are respectful and not mocking. Then there is at least one Mickey/Judy blackface scene in one of their "Let's put a show on in the barn!" films, but I feel like there may be more than one. I'm also pretty sure that even Shirley Temple wasn't spared from the world of blackface--I can't remember which film though. Sometimes blackface pops up unexpectedly and it's jarring. A while back, I watched Father is a Bachelor with William Holden and Coleen Gray. Holden is portrayed as some type of entertainer. We see him perform earlier in the film... then all of a sudden... bam! he's wearing blackface and singing a song. What? Why? For the record: as much as I like Holden and Gray, I thought this film was kind of lame. For the most part, I can look past the blackface scenes as I understand that they're reflective of the time in which the films were made. Some of the blackface scenes are cringeworthy--but so are some of the portrayals of African-American characters. The way in which some African-American characters (and other races, especially Asian) is horrible. The men (with the exception of a handful, like Sam in Casablanca) are portrayed as dopey and the women are often in servitude roles and are your stereotypical sassy black woman. A few women, like Lena Horne and Dorothy Dandridge, manage to get better roles. I have yet to see the spectacle that is Joan Crawford in Torch Song.

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