Monday, April 20, 2009

Today, Jessica Lange Is 60...

.

... and besides wishing her a very happy one,
JA of MNPP here would like to ask two related questions:

1) To those of you who saw it this past weekend, how was she in Grey Gardens? How was the whole thing? I haven't gotten around to watching it yet (I will tonight), but the only thing I've noticed from the trailers and pictures of the production is that the blankets on Old Big-Edie's bed just don't seem pee-stained enough to me, ya know what I mean? I wanna feel like I can't breathe in in there. Like my eyes are burning.

2) And what's your favorite Lange performance? Frances?
Carly in Blue Sky? Julie in Tootsie? Tamora in Titus?


(And as a star-f*cking side-note, I have to admit that right this very second as I was working on this post, Jessica Lange actually called my office and I just spoke to her. WEIRD. I mean, not that weird, she's friendly with my boss and I've spoken to and met her several times here in the real world, but still, it threw me off. [/starf*cking]) .
.

32 comments:

MrW said...

I'd go for either 'Music Box' or 'Don't Come Knocking' as my favorite performance - I really liked her a lot in 'Knocking', even though no one seems to have watched it and everyone who did seems to prefer the somewhat similar 'Broken Flowers', (with another memorable performance by Jessica).

Anonymous said...

I LOVE HER!

Catherine said...

As Angelique, probably.

Walter L. Hollmann said...

Oh, Grey Gardens was wonderful. Great as Drew was (and she was effing STELLAR), Lange gave the best performance. Aggravating, humorous, and sad. Their chemistry together is terrific.

Brodie said...

Frances! But I fell in love with her in Cape Fear.

Is she the worst best actress ever? She's delivered some brilliant performances (and shown versatility, Frances and Tootsie in the same year?!) but anyone who's seen ROb Roy or Hush will agree with me.

Chris Na Taraja said...

I love her in TOOTSIE.

Wayne B. said...

Her ears musta been burning!

Lange's a big hole in my actressexuality movie knowledge. There are only three memorable performances of hers that I've seen: "Tootsie" which shes awesome in, sexy and comedic. (Still not sure about the supporting placement) "A Thousand Acres" her voice and body language when she begins to remember the past got me, but I give credit to LA PFEIFFER as well for strengthening their scenes together. "Big Fish" definitely benefitted from having her but her talent was underutilized. The tub scene was a standout. I've been waiting for Grey Gardens for over a year now.

Deborah said...

I love her beyond words in Normal. Oh, my GODS, Normal.

rosengje said...

Blue Sky is such a horrendous movie that I feel Jessica has been forever tainted for me. Was 1994 really that actress deprived?

Anonymous said...

I loved her in Sweet Dreams!!!

Moanerplicity said...

Frances, because, although dark, was, the film was an impressive character study which allowed her to stretch as an actress. That was the first film I really began to take her seriously and notice her formidable dramatic chops.

Happy Natal Day, Ms. Lange.


Snatch JOY!

One.

Billy Held An Oscar said...

I have to agree with MrW - 'Music Box' is on my favorite Lange films. There is also something about 'Sweet Dreams' that I just love.

I have watched 'Grey Gardens' four times since it aired on Saturday evening. Amazing little film - a great production all the way around.

NATHANIEL R said...

my favorite Frances is either TOOTSIE or her underseen work in MEN DON'T LEAVE -- she's really moving in that.

but i also have issues with some of her performances (didn't like her work in Blue Sky)

and to Rosengje... the answer is no. it's just one of those years where the less traditional stuff is better (so Oscar has to go with bad traditional stuff due to lack of imagination)

Anonymous said...

Blue Sky was a terrible film. It should have stayed on that vault shelf.

She won for Tootsie because she gave the elderly Academy member a hard-on. I remember she checked the envelope to make sure she was the winner upon accepting the Oscar; I guess she wasn't the only one who couldn't believe she won for such a fluff role.

Seeking Amy said...

That's a little harsh. My favorite performance is Tootsie too, then Frances. 1994 should have looked more like this in terms of Best Actress

Julianne Moore - Vanya on 42nd Street
Kate Winslet - Heavenly Creatures
Linda Fiorentino - The Last Seduction (If only it hadn't been released on TV first, sigh)
Tom & Viv - Miranda Richardson (at least they got someone right that year)
Jennifer Jason Leigh - Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle


I haven't seen Little Women and can scarcely remember Nell since I saw it when I was a kid so I can't justify if Winona Ryder or Jodie Foster deserved their noms or not.


Jessica Lange was also incredibly hot in King Kong. The only thing that made me keep going through the whole thing.

Billy Held An Oscar said...

'How To Beat The High Cost of Living'

An American Classic.

I keep waiting for a Curtain-Lange-St James reunion but it never happens.

Anonymous said...

My favorite Jessica Lange performance is "Music Box". I think she would win her Lead Oscar in 1989, even to expenses for Pfeiffer 8Very Good performance btw). Sorry, but I love more Lange's performance. And she was fantastic in "Frances" (maybe if the film would released one year before, she could have better chances).

My 1994 lineup is:

*Julianne Moore, Vanya on 42nd Street
*Irene Jacob, Three Colors: Red.
*Jennifer Jason Leigh, Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle
*Miranda Richardson, Tom & Viv
*Jodie Foster, Nell
Alt: Kate Winslet, heavenly Creatures.

Scott said...

I'd throw my support behind Tootsie. Though she was surprisingly effective in Titus given that film's eccentricities.

I never saw Blue Sky, but I'd be shocked if she was better than Julianne Moore in Vanya.

Drew said...

I'm not familiar enough with most of her major roles... but she was amazing in Titus. Great film, captivating performance.

augie6 said...

I'm from Minnesota and have been a fan of Jessica Lange's since she first burst on the screen. Her "Blue Sky" is my favorite Jessica performance - definitely worthy of the Oscar handed her that year!!!

Seanyeh said...

JL is my favoritest actress.
She is great in "A Thousand Acres", "Sweet Dream", "Blue Sky" and "Music Box"...
Happy Birthday Jessica Lange!!

Julien K said...

I guess Frances remains her shining hour, and though I really wanted to love it, the film is so mediocre and at times rings so false that it makes it even difficult to appreciate Jessica's work in it.

I'm surprised no one ever mentions Country when it comes to Lange.
It was her pet project after she hit it big in 82, and it turned out to be the best (and most relevant) of the 'farm movies' that all came out in 84.
She's very good in it, grounded and moving, with none of the mannerisms that sometimes affect her performances. I guess that's the year I'd have voted for her. (84 has to be one of the worst best actess fields ever)

Will said...

'Oh Jacqueline, I was just thinking about you!' - Jessica Lange rocks in Grey Garden and so does Drew Barrymore. Both are lead, by the way. Great film.

Yancey said...

Jessica Lange has never floated my boat, but damn if she wasn't incredible in "Grey Gardens." She and Drew were Oscar-worthy in that if it had gone that route. See "Grey Gardens" immediately everyone!

Anonymous said...

It's too bad that Jessica Lange won both of her Oscars for such blah performaces. I was watching "Frances" again, and she was brilliant in that. Too bad no one was beating Meryl for "Sophie's Choice", but she could have taken on Katharine Hepburn if "Frances" had been released a year earlier. "TOE" would have been too much for her to topple the following year with Shirley MacLaine.

mrripley said...

my fave perf of hers is defintely frances and my underrated perf of hers is a thousand acres.

Ken said...

OK. Have been a Lange fan for years. Fell in love with her in King Kong, cemented that love with Tootsie. As for my favorite performances, I am a big fan of Tootsie, Frances, Sweet Dreams, and Titus. I agree completely about A Thousand Acres being good and underrated. Music Box is fine and she is the only thing that keeps Blue Sky from capsizing entirely. I loved Big Fish, but I agree about her talent not being maximized. I truly think my second fav perf of hers might be in "Men Don't Leave." It was a wonderful film released around 1990. Co-starred Chris O'Donnell, Arliss Howard, and a brilliant (as always) turn by Kathy Bates. Lange was superb, at times winsome, vulnerable, courageous...just great. But...it is GREY GARDENS which garners the prize in my book. I have seen the doc and watched the film and I agree with the comment that Drew was effing STELLAR, but that Lange outshone everything. She was magnificent. She did not impersonate; she brought depth and layers to a woman who has no shortage of layers naturally...I felt like I really got to see inside Big Edie's past. Barrymore may likely win the trophies, but Lange is the ultimate reason to see GG. Whew!

Cody said...

Probably Tootsie is my favorite.
She was amazing in Grey Gardens but Drew I felt was better!

madame sevigny said...

Nathaniel has really turned into the elitist since Obama won the election.

Now he works with the mighty... "Jessica Lange called MY office"... I guess she wouldn't call her launderette in person, so Nathaniel probably works for a flashy, capitalist-friendly company.

First he went to College with people who get roles in mega hits, then he talks to Jessica Lange on the phone... and she's the one who's calling !

We the little people feel betrayed, Nathaniel

vince said...

1) Grey Gardens was good. Jessica may just well win an Emmy. When she's doing the "present day" scenes, she is quite amazing. I think Drew might also win. I'm guessing, Lange will be supporting and Barrymore lead. A friend on facebook said that it was the best work Lange as done in a while and the best of Barrymore's career. I have to agree. (Shouldn't you get some additional points Nat for the 2008 Psychic contest?)

2) Men Don't Leave. Way better than I expected.

JA said...

Seriously, Nat. YOU STAR-HUMPING CAPITALIST NAZI!

Oh wait, I wrote this post? NEVERMIND.

Anonymous said...

Loved Grey Gardens. I thought she was excellent in that. I love "Sweet Dreams" where she plays Patsy Kline. She is great in Burton's "Big Fish" too.