Thursday, September 20, 2007

Links: Blanchett, Foreign Films and Stupid Questions

Zoom-In Three questions you should never ask at a Q & A --a film festival rant from moi
Eddie on Film a nondefinitive list of the 122 greatest foreign language films evah. So many of them I will have to add to my rental queue
Burbanked It pays to be McConaughey's co-star. Unfortunate but true
Stale Popcorn Vin Diesel's new low?
Lazy Eye Theater here's to the conformists

Antagonie & Ecstacy An interesting 'workman' take on Eastern Promises
Awards Daily Despite divided reactions on The Golden Age Stephen Holt still think Cate Blanchett will win the Oscar for it. (Perhaps I'm way wrong about this but I doubt it) But he also thinks Angelina Jolie is a lock for A Mighty Heart and Keira Knightley only an 'outside' possibility for Atonement so... take it for what it's worth. But speaking of Blanchett...


<-- Oh Cate, don't look so surprised that I'm singing your praises

One last link:

As an olive branch to the Blanchettophiles who incorrectly view me as a hater (because I don't unconditionally love and because I often dread second Oscars when so few deserving greats have even one), I've devoted today's Thursday Triple at my other blogging gig to performances of hers that I think are undervalued. Enjoy.

33 comments:

JA said...

Cate is SOSOSOSOSO good IN Heaven, I'm glad to see you give it some love.

Kamikaze Camel said...

Definitely agreed with the three Cate perfs (four if you include German). I loooove her in Ripley especially. The scene where she and Gwyneth meet at the cafe is amazing.

vince said...

Is it me or does anyone else want to see Cate Blanchett and Nicole Kidman go head to head?

Boyd said...

I love Blanchett in Ripley, and she managed to make the role stand out and feel an inherent part of the story is a real testament to her and writer-director Minghella, because Meredith does not exist in the book. (another reason why Minghella's Ripley and Plein Soleil can both be enjoyed... they're different enough)

Boyd said...

Of course I mean "and the fact that she managed..."

Anonymous said...

i have a soft spot for blanchett in the shipping news i don't like the film with wishy washy spacey and coasting dench and moore in a nothing part but in those 11 mins of screen time she leaves an indelible impression,i love the way she puts o nher clothes and the line "nibble nibble little mouse is made almost frightening,her sheer exasperation at spacey is great,her perf is so vivid she nails petal in a few short scenes and in 01 along with nmirren,winslet,diaz & tomei would've made my best supp actress list.

adam k. said...

I think the reason Cate was not nommed, or even really in the running in 99, is that she had just been nominated the year before, and people probably were less impressed with Ripley than with Elizabeth, and also that there were just so many worthy women that year that somebody had to step aside. And all the women they DID choose were first-time nominees.

I LOVE Cate in Ripley, too, and even I don't think I would've nominated her.

I've gotta check out Heaven and The Man Who Cried, though. They sound great.

crazycris said...

speaking of foreign language films... are you going to put together another table summarizing the selections like you did last year Nat? Was an interesting and impressive piece of work! (and it's what brought me to your site int he 1st place)

Piper said...

First, I love Cate.

Second, I would love to see Cate and Nicole go head to head.

Three, I've lost my train of thought after that last point.

Four, love the rantings about the Festival questions. No doubt all those people thought they had stumbled on to some profound stuff, only to come off as idiots.

Five, I've lost my train of thought again, thinking about my second point.

Six, thanks for the link.

Anonymous said...

I think Blanchett's best work is still Oscar and Lucinda.

- cal roth

Anonymous said...

she was good in paradise road i remeber watching it and thinking who is that blasting all those other well knowns off the screen.

amir_uk said...

Cate was magnificent in Ripley - one of her very best. I am still surprised that film didn't get more attention from the Oscars, especially nominations for Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow and Cate Blanchett.

That foreign film top 100 list is nice (I LOVE the quotes they use), but there's no Iranian, African or Eastern European cinema represented. It's too first-world centric.

Brian said...

Amir, as someone who submitted to that list, I agree with you wholeheartedly (though there is a bit of Eastern Europe represented, by Tarkovsky, Kalazatov, Klimov, Kieslowski and Tarr). Each of us submitted 25 film titles (mine included films from Senegal, Iran, Thailand and Czechoslovakia) and if three submitters all chose a title, it was added to the 122 and eligible to be ranked in the top 100.

Unfortunately, without the credibility and availability that comes from, say, a Criterion release, few of the greatest foreign language films from outside Europe and Japan have been seen by enough English-speaking critics and movie buffs for a consensus to have formed around them yet. Perhaps more international critics and bloggers should have been sought out to participate. But even though most of the people contributing to the list were Americans, apparently more than 400 titles were nominated. Here is a list of films suggested by participants, but that didn't meet the three-vote minimum to qualify.

Brian said...

Oh, and Nathaniel, I loved your article on stupid questions. I should print copies to hand out in film festival lines.

Barry said...

Did you like her in The Shipping News?

rural juror said...

"But they’ll nominate Foster for sure for the sheer gutsy intensity of her powerful mugging-victim-turned vigilante in “The Brave One.” And it’s also scoring heavily at the box-office."

[about Jodie Foster]

I REALLY don't think Jodie Foster or Angelina Jolie are getting in.

Michael said...

Much as Cate was workable as a Russian ballerina (though the real ones can 'really' dance!), THE MAN WHO CRIED is a wretched, stupid, pretentious film. And I love pretentious films!

HEAVEN is sublime... so good a film, I wanted to remake it shot for shot. And Cate is a fantastic at the centre of it... Kieslowski would have liked her performance, if nothing else about the film.

THE GOOD GERMAN and RIPLEY are also fine. Perhaps LITTLE FISH also deserves a mention? Would that film even be worth watching without its performances?

- The Heaven-loving Man-Who-Cried-hating Australian

NATHANIEL R said...

barry --i did not like her shipping news performance, no. But i didn't like ANY performance in that movie

cate. she always gets people talking.

Arkaan said...

"As an olive branch to the Blanchettophiles who incorrectly view me as a hater (because I don't unconditionally love and because I often dread second Oscars when so few deserving greats have even one)"

I'll accept the olive branch, because really, praising Blanchett is so much fun (even though I think you mischaracterize the perception of your dislike and... I'm a curmudgeon). Though I doubt she's winning an oscar for The Golden Age.

Kamikaze Camel said...

People should see Thank God He Met Lizzie. It was before she was "Cate Blanchett" but she won a couple of supporting actress awards (including the AFI).

Adam, it does go to show that 1999 was such a strong year that Blanchett for Ripley was probably around the #8 position, if not lower. After the five that were nominated I'd think Cameron Diaz and Julianne Moore would have gotten more votes. But, if you check out the film's awards page at IMDb you'll see no awards body even nominated her for the performance outside of the Chlotrudis Awards so who knows whether she was even in the running at all. I would have nominated her, but I haven't seen Morton's Sweet and Lowdown performance.

Don't go into Heaven and The Man Who Cried expecting anything remotely mainstream. Neither will be what you expect. Which, perhaps, makes them essential viewing.

Michael said...

Morton is great in SWEET AND LOWDOWN... as is Sean Penn actually... (surprises abound! I just saw ALL THE KING'S MEN - forgive me for thinking ill of Penn...)

Paul C. said...

Just wanted to add a big HELL YES to your Q&A gripes, especially the one about people self-promoting. After the screening of Brian DePalma's Redacted at Toronto this year, a woman stood up and denounced the majority of mainstream media for failing to provide what she deemed sufficient coverage of the incident that inspired the movie. Then she proceeded to plug her own site. Shameless.

Another one for the list: if you are called upon at a Q&A, ask a frickin' question. It's "question and answer," not "statement and acknowledgment." The great majority of the audience doesn't really care what you think.

JS said...

Cate used to be the youngest of my favorite actresses and I loved her in Ripley though I did think her presence overshadowed everyone at times (was it her outfits?).

I wonder what Nathaniel would do if he found out that there will be a movie with Cate Blanchett, Scarlett Johansson and Dakota Fanning playing three sisters. Barricade his door in case that Triforce of Ambitiousness came soliciting? ;)

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steve said...

Actually, Blanchett was also nominated for a BAFTA for Ripley.

I thought she was great in that, too, but was pretty far down my Supporting Actress list for that year. I would have nominated Collette, Keener, Kidman, and Sevigny, with major apologies to Henderson (Topsy-Turvy) and Lange (Titus)... then maybe I'd start thinking about Blanchett.

adam k. said...

I would definitely put Blanchett in Ripley behind Keener, Sevigny, Moore, Jolie, and probably Collette, too. I also haven't seen Morton. I'd have teetering around the #5, #6 and #7 positions, so probably just an honorable mention from me.

I really haven't seen many Blanchett films outside of her Elizabeth and The Aviator. I still haven't even seen Notes on a Scandal or The Good German. I've seen her in The Gift, The Life Aquatic and The Missing, and she was better than all the films... but not really award-worthy per se. Of what I've seen, I'd say the only one she's not "impressive" in is Babel, where she's just kinda blah. Oh, and of course The Shipping News... though I didn't think she was bad, she was just doing what she could with what she was given.

Anonymous said...

Morton should have won her first Oscar for Sweet and Lowdown. I mean, she is greater than Blanchett (and Blanchett is very very good).

-cal roth

amir_uk said...

Brian, thanks for expanding on the selection process - that list of titles is obviously, and rightly, more diverse. Still can't believe no-one put forward Kiarostami's Ten (2003).

As for 1999 supporting actresses, my picks would be Sevigny (for the win) followed by Blanchett, Morton, Collette and Keener.

amir_uk said...

Or Tropical Malady (2005) for that matter - although I see Blissfully Yours (2002) and Taste of Cherry (1998) were both put forward.

Anonymous said...

99 was a good supporting year
my 5 in rank order
1 - diaz
2 - jolie
3 - paltrow
4 - suvari
5 - collette

6 - moore
7 - blanchett
8 - sevigny
9 - keener
10 - morton

is kidman not lead if supp she'd be no 6

Steve said...

I rarely stay for Q&A sessions for exactly the reasons you brought up -- most of the questions are, to put it politely, frickin' retarded. Nothing that I've heard beats the one I heard after Silent Light, though, when a gentleman stood up and earnestly asked if the ending actually happened within the film's world. I think he was trying to ask if there was a metaphorical dimension, but instead he just looked dumb.

Kamikaze Camel said...

Anon, I am never sure about Kidman for Eyes Wide Shut. I instinctively just put her in lead but it really is only a supporting performance because she disappears for large portions of the film. If I were to put her in supporting she's definitely get a nod along with Blanchett, Keener, Jolie and either Antonia San Juan, Sevigny or Collette. Such a good year. Of names not mentioned I also liked Sissy Spacek (The Straight Story), Marisa Parades (All About My Mother), Jennifer Esposito (Summer of Sam), Sharon Stone (The Muse) and agreed on Jessica Lange (Titus) whoever mentioned her earlier. She's bonkers, just like the movie.

Brian said...

amir, I was the one (or perhaps one of two) who nominated Blissfully Yours. I also nominated Kiarostami's Where is the Friend's Home. But Ten and Tropical Malady were ineligible because 2002 was the cutoff year for the list; the organizers of the poll didn't want films less than five years old to be considered.

Anonymous said...

The extended preview of the Golden Age on movies.yahoo.com is so decadent. I would love to see the movie first day.