Monday, November 16, 2009

Birthday Suits: Cougar Town

Celebrating the birthdays cinematic: actors, actresses, and other filmtypes. If it's your big day, a happy one to you as well.

The Penguin and The Secretary

Today's B-Days 11/16
1908 Burgess Meredith two time Oscar nominee. But no, not for the Penguin in Batman: The Movie. Those honors came back to back in his late 60s for Rocky and The Day of the Locust.
1964 Harry Lennix best known for his TV work in shows like Dollhouse and Commander in Chief but he's cut an imposing figure in the movies too (Titus, the Matrix trilogy). But yes Dollhouse was cancelled last week. sigh.
1967 Lisa Bonet mostly retired actress, Huxtable, one of Marisa Tomei's besties
1970 Martha Plimpton. My friends have this thing where they cast the book they've just read for their book club each month. It's their tradition that they have to give 80s teen film star turned ubiquitous Broadway thespian a role in every film. And why not?
1977 Maggie Gyllenhaal incredible actress, give or take, um,... No, I'm not ready to say it. I love you, Maggie!

Two more from Cougar Town! And I don't mean the sitcom (which I enjoy by the way) And I don't mean that as a pejorative either. Italian beauty Valeria Bruni Tedeschi turns 45 today. She's made American films like Munich and A Good Year but remains most vivid in French cinema. Films include: 5x2 (fine work there), Those Who Love Me Can Take the Train, Actrices and Queen Margot. And yes, her boyfriend is ubiquitous French actor/sex symbol Louis Garrel who is 26.

I also want to say a quick word of praise for Missi Pyle, turning 38, who has been an ensemble player in a ton of comedies (Galaxy Quest, Big Fish, Dodgeball, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, etc) and does a lot of TV guest work. She was recently hilarious as boozy cougar "Charlene" in the long-delayed Spring Breakdown with Amy Poehler and Parker Posey. The movie is not half as funny as the cast list suggests but it has its moments and many of them belong to her. Well done. Missi also just recorded an album with another actress Shawnee Smith (the Saw movies) called Smith & Pyle "It's OK to be happy". Judging by the lyrics and video blogs, they're selling comedy with their country music.


Alex Constantin said...

is it cruel to say that eye-candy Louis Garrel went for Valeria Bruni Tedeschi just because he wants a piece of her sister, the (in)famous delicious French First Lady?

:P oh. oh.

Flosh said...

Day of the Locust! Don't hear that one come up in conversation very much.

My god what a strange, unsettling movie that is. Meredith was excellent in it - love the sequence where he goes door to door doing his weird little dances, with that creepy music accompanying on the soundtrack... Yikes. Such a sad character in that film.

I also love the stage collapse and riot sequences in Day... Incredibly filmed by Conrad Hall. Real nightmarish stuff.

Plus, Donald Sutherland plays a character named Homer J. Simpson. The mind boggles.

Anyone else seen it?


Flosh i actually haven't but your description makes me want to drop everything and do so.


Alex Constantin said...

I have seen it. Meredith is ok in it, but the film is quite... disturbing. The scene with Donald Sutherland and the kid traumatized me. :) that's sick.

I think BM was better in Rocky.

Anonymous said...

Meredith was also Paulette Goddard's beau for a while...oh, lucky man!

I'm not so sure he is better in ROCKY than in Schlesinger's film, of course ROCKY was a much more mainstream feature and the role of old and grumpy trainer was much more easy to love...regarding Meredith once for a while I second SATURN AWARDS telling he was remarkable in MAGIC in which he costarred alongside Anthony Hopkins (pre-Hannibal) and Ann-Margret (pre-tv movies)
What a pity SATURN AWARDS didn't exist in the sixties: they could have had some fun rewarding BATMAN series (and movie) villains


ps: Maggie Gyllenhaal is incredible, indeed!!! Peter Saarsgard is another lucky man (even in this case we could say that Maggie is a lucky woman herself...)

Jim T said...

Nathaniel??? Did you imply that Maggie was not good in Crazy Heart?? You broke my heart. YOU BROKE MY HEART!!


Bailey said...

I too like Missi Pyle. She has one of those faces you never forget, and she's naturally funny. Nice to see her mentioned.


Jim T... no comment.

Bailey... glad to see someone else has noticed her. I recognized her face long before I knew the name but the Spring Breakdown performance is by far the favorite thing I've seen her do.

Marshall1 said...

Hey Nat,

Personally I love Cougartown, do you think Courtney Cox will snag a best comedic actress nom come Golden Globe? I don't think the show would work as well without the actors and actresses (mainly the actresses).