Tuesday, March 03, 2009

"What quirks lurk beneath those rosy cheeks?"

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Hello, everyone, JA from MNPP here, popping my head in while Nat rests up. On my agenda: I'd like to wish the wonderful actress Miranda Richardson a happy 51st birthday.

In thinking about Richardson for this post, I realized that I love her due to some really random choices out of her filmography - namely her campier work in Southland Tales, Snow White, and Sleepy Hollow, her Rita Skeeter in the Harry Potter movies, and most of all her amazing multi-character high-wire juggling act in David Cronenberg's Spider. It appears that somehow, most of her earlier acclaimed performances, like her Oscar nominated role in Damage, I haven't seen. Huh. I'm a Miranda Richardson loving fraud!


Anyway, because I'm seemingly unfamiliar with most of her prestige-ier work, I went looking through Nat's mentions of Richardson then - he named her #46 in his Top Actresses of the Aughts countdown - and what I noticed was the word "underused" attached to her most frequently. I concur. She works steadily, but she ought to be worked harder. Faster! Given some plum roles! She knows what to do with 'em, that's for certain.

I don't know how big her part will be in the Emily Blunt starring The Young Victoria - Richardson plays the Duchess of Kent, but I didn't even notice her in the trailer - but hopefully she'll get to shine some there. Her other upcoming credit is called Telepathy and co-stars Sam Neill and has the most delightful plot outline I've read in forever:

"A pair of identical twins are separated by Russian scientists to determine if they can communicate with each other while one is kept on earth and the other is launched into space."

Russian scientists! Twins launched into space! That is some must-see stuff right there.
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8 comments:

NATHANIEL R said...

she is G-R-E-A-T. thanks for highlighting her. there really is no beating that SPIDER performance.

but i recommend DANCE WITH A STRANGER for her early stuff because it's scandalous and rupert everett when he was super young/gorgeous and a total prick to the director apparently (hence his shaky career directly thereafter) details in his latest book.

Anonymous said...

Loved her as Nessa in The Hours

Dom said...

She is one of few celebrities that I've actually met in person. I was an AD on Nicolas Roeg's (deservedly) underseen "Puffball". (BTW, I say "deservedly" because as awesome as Roeg is, this film is crap. However, I blame the editor and the composers. I have seen every last minute of footage of that film and I swear it could have been much better! But I digress since probably no one here has seen it).

Back to the topic at hand... The weird thing about meeting a character actor is that you expect them to be a bit batty. However, Richardson is a bizarre hybrid of a character actor and a classical actor, if you know what I mean. (Did that even make sense? Sorry, I have a fever.) So though I expected a poised, classy kind of woman, she turned out to be a bit... batty and not just because she has an assistant just for her dogs. Still, she was always fun to watch, no matter how badly the film turned out.

So yeah: LOVE HER!

JA said...

Dom, the fact that you found her to be "batty" just made my love for her like quadruple. Yay, she's who I want her to be!!!!

Scott said...

Even though sometimes I've wondered if her nomination in Damage was partially a result of her semi-nude scene, she's one of my favorite actresses. Her campy/threatening stuff is great (love that you picked out Southland Tales, Sleepy Hollow and Harry Potter - it's a great combination) - but so are are "serious" turns. And really, how have you missed Damage? It's, um, interesting - to put it mildly.

rosengje said...

I just saw Damage for the first time a few weeks ago. Interesting? Movie is messed up. I somehow still really enjoyed it, but Jeremy Irons has been known to have questionable effects on me. Such as compelling me to finish Dead Ringers despite the obvious ensuing onset of nightmares immediately following completion.

NATHANIEL R said...

Scott... I think her DAMAGES nomination is 40% The Crying Game and 10% Beatrice Straight in Network nostalgic ;)

Juan Meyer said...

I'm also a fan of Miranda Richardson. I think she might be one of the 10 most talented English speaking actresses working (or not working that much).

If you are fans, do not miss her hilarious appearances in the second season of Black Adder, as Queen Elizabeth. She is an extraordinary comedianne, and seeing her having it with Rowan Atkinson and Stephen Fry is a major treat.

She was great in Enchanted April too.