Friday, January 16, 2009

Breakfast With... Sally Bowles

Prairie Oysters, darling!

It's an egg with worcestershire sauce all sort of whooshed up together!
Sally thinks you'll adore them and she recommends them for sinister hangovers -- Not that you were out drinking last night dear reader!


par3182 said...


abstew said...

Sally: Oh, you got the toothpaste glass!

Hello, darling!! I must have a case of the dizzies, because I’ve had liza on the brain ever since she was on SNL this past weekend.

This may be blasphemy, but I think they should make another cabaret movie based on the the sam mendes revival. Put back the secondary characters’ songs and make it grittier. Film it in black and white, have the musical numbers in color. And at the end, find out that the whole thing is performed at a concentration camp. It would be a completely different film. And have cate blanchett as sally.


abstew -- you trying to hurt me? CATE BLANCHETT is already in everything. Now you want her in musicals too? Can she even sing?

also i think this is a fair question: how does one make Cabaret "grittier"? it's hardly a light family friendly romp as is...

P.S. as i was rewatching bits of this the other day i fell in love with its cinematography all over again. You'd never see it's like today of course because GRAIN = BAD nowadays but i love how dirty and grainy the image is. loves it.

Guy said...

Nat: Unless Cate Blanchett was giving a spectacular impression of someone who can't sing a note (quite possible, of course), I'd say "Bandits" answered that question for us.

(I'm not dissing, incidentally -- I love Cate deeply.)

"Cabaret" doesn't need to be remade. EVER.

par3182 said...

if they ever remake it (please, NO) then let them have the sense to cast toni collette

Guy said...

I need to clarify, that emphatic EVER was in a "why-remake-perfection" tone, not an "I-hate-Cabaret" tone.

E Dot said...

Please, no. Unless you can get Bob Fosse to give his blessing...

Catherine said...

I'm loving this new series!

Michael Parsons said...

toni... *screetches* TONI!!!!!!!!!!!!

abstew said...

i don't know if any of you saw the sam mendes revival with natasha richardson and alan cumming (or the millions of other televison stars that took their place.) but it really is a completely different show.
sally is british. and it's not brian but cliff and he's american. there is no english lessons with the rich jewish girl. there's no rich man that sally takes up with where they end up living as a threesome. cliff's landlady has a subplot about a love affair with a grocer. and there's many songs that were cut from the film. well, the music to the songs is in the movie, whenever sally puts on a record. there is a great song that the landlady, Fräulein Schneider, sings called what would you do.
and my favorite song of the emcee's, i don't care much, is not in the film.
and it was grittier in the look. the kit kat klub girls are covered in bruises and track marks. the emcee is very sexual as opposed to joel gray's asexual interpretation. the 2 ladies number has a guy in drag as one of the ladies. its just has a more seedy feel.
and cate doesn't have to sing. she just has to have star quality and be able to emote through the songs. sam said that his main problem with the film is that it doesn't make sense that liza's sally would work in the kat kat klub because she has a great voice and is a wonderful performer. (toni colette would be good as well.)

i think the fosse cabaret is a great film. this isn't anything like it. i believe that a film version of sam mendes' version is completely justifiable. its different enough not to be a remake, but a new film that just happens to also be the musical cabaret.


abstew... ARGH. i love your comments but what? My middle finger to Sam Mendes quote there.

( although i did love his stage version of Cabaret and saw it three times)

Don't you know that this i my biggest pet peeve in the world? The constant excusing of stars who can't sing being cast in musicals.

I hate the notion of "the character shouldn't be able to sing well"... just like we all except that the unattractive girl in the movie is actually a BEAUTY with glasses on. we should accept that Sally Bowles is supposed to not be a great talent even though she is. suspension of disbelief.

musicals should ALWAYS have great singing.

i was so pissed with Kevin Kline (who has a beautiful voice) downplayed his singing voice in order to portray cole porter's not so good singing voice in de-lovely.



Anonymous said...

Thank you for that Nat. That seemed to be people's biggest defense of Renee Zellwegger's performance as Roxie in CHICAGO. "It's alright that she's merely okay in the song and dance numbers because Roxie really isn't all that talented to begin with." However, when the movie uses the device of all the numbers taking place as her fantasies shouldn't she be spectacular? I know I'm damn talented in my own mind... and after a few.


abstew said...

middle finger to sam mendes?!? (somewhere kate is clutching her pearls, and revolutionary road golden globe, aghast)
i would take emotion and acting in a song over technical ability any day. that was my biggest problem with jennifer hudson in dreamgirls. she had a great voice but her eyes were dead. she wasn't feeling what she was singing she was just doing vocal acrobatics.
but i agree that stunt casting has to stop. stars shouldn't be cast in things they aren't suitable for just because they are a name. it has to justify the charcter and feel of the show. rosario dawson in rent? out of her depth. and if you think she was bad in that, you should hear her on stage, where there's no digital enhancing, singing with professional singers emoting AND singing the shit out of it.
but (and i know i'm gonna get blasted for this) renee in chicago was great. her character wants to be in show business, but obviuosly isn't good enough. her lack of vocal ability made sense and worked because she acted through the songs.
film, and especially musicals, are all about suspension of disbelief. but you don't want to make it harder for the audience by doing something that doesn't ring true. then you you just lose them.


my biggest issue with this big issue (NAVEL meet NAVEL) is that it's a falsehood that you can't have both.

i always hear this but there are PLENTY of singers who can emote through songs and also play a full character, acting wise.

Hollywood just doesn't want to have to work that hard to find them. Easier to cast the 80 actors that they cast in everything in everything new that's being made, whethe they're right for it or not.

abstew said...

nathaniel, agreed.
i started to write something longer and then i realized, you know, we're on the same page here.
i just happen to think cate blanchett would be a good sally bowles.
but i am LOVING everyone else's suggestion of toni colette. she did something in velvet goldmine that i always thought would be perfect for sally, where she goes in and out of a british accent. not because she doesn't know how to do the accent but because she's putting on a character that she wants to be preserved as and when the walls come down, the real voice comes out. sally bowles is all about the glamorous facade.

Guy Lodge said...

(small voice) Wouldn't Cate Blanchett be a little ... er ... old to play Sally Bowles?

abstew said...

ms. blanchett, like benjamin button himself, is ageing in reverse. in a few years time she shall be ideal ;)


Ha! Here I thought I only had to wait 5 more years to be rid of her (you know how they eventually pass on the mid 40s and up)


Arkaan said...

I tend to agree with Nathaniel, but I'd argue that Cabaret is very specific with it's story of degradation that a star voice doesn't work for the role. But I dislike the film and Fosse's film work in general, so I'll sit in my corner.

Toni Collette would be perfection though.


arkaan -- but TONI's singing voice is amazing so i don't see your point.

Arkaan said...

I think Toni's voice could be acted through to make it worse, if that makes any sense. I don't think Minelli's a strong enough actress to do so, whereas I can see Toni Colette doing something magnificent (sorta like what Donna Murphy did for LoveMusik).

And, voice aside, I don't think Blanchett would be that great as Sally Bowles, but I'd be interested in seeing what she did nonetheless.

Walter L. Hollmann said...

wasn't Judi Dench the original Sally Bowles in London? and considered to be one of the best interpretations of the role? and have you heard her sing?

i think there's a clip on YouTube. she nails the character, but her singing is not--how shall i put this?--at Liza Level. but it works, and Judi's great, and if they ever were to do a remake, she should play the landlady.

Oh, and whether she's "too good" for the klub or not, Liza's Sally is amazing. i see sam mendes' point, but let's be honest: is he really an authority on realism? really?

Walter L. Hollmann said...

here's the judi vid:

Brian said...

I haven't seen the Sam Mendes version but, though I was exposed to the Fosse film first, ever since seeing my high school's production of the play I've preferred the songs in the original book to the ones that replaced them in the film. The opinion was reconfirmed with a rewatch last year.