Friday, April 17, 2009

Signatures: "Career Counseling" Edition

Adam of Club Silencio here with another look at my favorite actresses and their distinguishing claims to fame.

Fans of my "Signatures" series (crickets) should know I've made quite the non-career of summing up my favorite actresses in broad, minimizing strokes here at Film Experience. Well it didn't start here, folks! Pre-"Signatures" I made a couple posts that all but summed up the "Signature" splendors of stars Jodie Foster and Jennifer Connelly. It struck me that these were relevant now to the series since Jodie's consistently found whispering in quiet, enclosed areas, while Jennifer's usually found on the edge of a pier. You have to love career consistency.

So follow these main links for some early "Signatures" from these stunning but somber starlets. Think something like A&E's Biography meets... A&E's Intervention? All that history with a hefty dose of concern.

Signatures: Jodie Foster

The star of Inside Man is an indoor woman. Normally I'd call Jodie a brave one... if she wasn't agoraphobic or locked in her panic room. Jodie has a history of being holed up in confined spaces -- be it prison cells, basements, airplanes, tunnels, and spacecrafts specially designed to contact her own subconscious. Lately much of this is due to her being repeatedly (and sparsely) drawn to tight-knit thrillers that play on claustrophobic conflict. On-screen Jodie's presence is a breath of fresh air, but she's also desperately in need of one.

Even when they're on uppers, Jennifer Connelly's characters can be total downers. Who can blame them with all that career drama? She started her talented but tragic filmography with her only friend a fruit fly, then onto college overrun by white supremacists, ass-to-ass with a heroin habit, several children nearly drowned, a messy marriage to a schizo mathematician... Then to find out he's just not that into you! Poor, poor, pier-bound Jennifer.

Let's have an intervention for Jodie and Jennifer in the comments. Remember, it's all said with love.


Rodrigo the Hated One said...

OffTopic Question to Nathaniel?

Nat, when you say you have seen everything Julianne Moore has ever done... you count Eagle Eye too?

Sorry I just watched that one and find out she worked there.

Wayne B. said...

Adam - your Signatures posts are aces! It's not just crickets out here. I've got a yen for Jodie that goes back years, she's on my LOVE list. So many great performances, I never noticed how tight her spaces were before.

I USED to be a fan of Jennifer Connelly but that went out the window after I subjected myself to "A Beautiful Mind."
I'm not trying to knock her, she's shown major skills in the past with "Requiem For A Dream", "Waking The Dead" and "Inventing The Abbots". Those green eyes should have a photo exhibit dedicated solely to them. She definitely needs some type of career suscitation. Haven't seen "He's Just Not That Into You" yet but I am looking forward to "Creation".

Alex F said...

Is it me or did Zac Efron totally swipe Jodie's look in the Brave One for himself?

I'm always optimistic when it comes to Jodie. I've noticed that since she decided to shut down her production company, she has only focused on biggie studio projects -- presumably because they come with an eight figure paycheck and guaranteed distribution? I'm guessing there are a number of prodco's with limited budgets and decent scripts that would love to have her both for her name, talent, and ability to attract a good director (maybe)? She seems so risk averse these days,though, so who knows if she'd be interested in a small project. She's so not the same woman who fought and fought for her parts in the Accused and SOTL.

It's probably a little tougher for Connelly, no? I just watched The Day the Earth Stood Still and I almost cried it was so bad. It seemed like it would never end. She was really just wasted in that. I really do hope she's really good in Creation and that the movie itself is solid at least, otherwise, how else can she climb out of this "supporting player who's talents are mostly going to waste" road she's been treading.


Jennifer on piers! How have i never noticed this before? well done you cinematic sleuth!

Adam said...

Thank you Wayne B.! Your "Signature" is being the best Film Experience reader ever. (Apologies to anyone reading this who is not Wayne B.)

As for Jodie, I think you're right Alex, she seems a bit uninspired by the industry these days. I cannot believe she hasn't found a single shred of material that speaks to her more than "Flightplan" did. I guess, not surprisingly, she'd rather stay housebound.

And Jennifer seems in a similar rut. I can't say I've been overly impressed by a film of hers since "Requiem for a Dream," but I think she's capable of something special if she wasn't trapped in very limited roles. Even "Dark Water" benefited greatly from her effective sadness behind those entrancing eyes. Her best assets, besides the physically obvious, has been her edgier, more sultry indie performances. Someone write her another sexy, sad role possibly surrounding a pier!

Iggy said...

I think Foster would be great in one of those all-women cast movies, something like The Hours or in A Thousand Acres type of thing.

mrripley said...

oooooooohhhhhhhhhh a 1,000 acres featuring jessica langes 2 nd best performance ever and one of la pfeiffers most underrated.

Adam said...

Alex, I think you've mined the horrible truth with that "Brave One"/Zac Efron observation! I keep seeing previews for "17 Again" and thinking he looks far too young for so much vigilante justice.

Wayne B. said...

aww, thank you Adam for the compliment. *blush* :)