Sunday, January 29, 2012
a mix of films - part 1

I have been watching a lot of films these past weeks, and grateful to have them to watch---they have been saving me from the terrible despair I feel with my dear Sweetie gone....I can kind of lose myself in these films. But, it has been a very mixed bag.....And remember, anything I write about these films is just my very personal subjective opinion.....So, here goes.......With the Oscar Nominations now here as well as The SAG Awards just on the brink---I will start with some of the films I've seen that have nominations in one or more category's."MY WEEK WITH MARILYN"...Well, for me, people are behind the 8 Ball from the get-go attempting to make me believe anyone is Marilyn Monroe....For me, she was such an 'iconic' figure and so incandescent...I say, don't even try....So, I really didn't care for this film very much, at all, and again, for me, Michelle Williams, no matter how great an actress she is--and she is a wonderful actress---can just never be MM. I didn't have quite the same problem with Kenneth Branagh, though again, he is not and will never be Olivier....And, Julia Ormand as Vivien Leigh....well, I just couldn't buy it for a minute--Vivien Leigh was one of the most beautiful women in the world, ever. I just feel like I know these people too well, to accept seeing 'actors' pretending to be them. As to Nominations: Michelle Williams is nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress and The SAG Award for Best Actress In A Film. And Kenneth Branagh is nominated for both an Oscar and a SAG Award in the Best Supporting Actor in a Film, category."THE IRON LADY"....Meryl Streep's performance is truly truly wonderful, especially as the older Thatcher....very touching and believable. I realize that Margaret Thatcher is not someone that has the same iconic stature for me that MM had...and those of you across the pond may feel Meryl Streep can never "be" Thatcher....I understand it, if you do feel that way. But, being an outsider and not being as familiar with Margaret Thatcher, I thought Meryl Streep's performance was near flawless.....I'd love to know what all my U.K. Blogger Buddies feel about this......Meryl Streep is nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress., and for The SAG Award as Best Actress In A Film."ALBERT NOBBS".....Glenn Close had a passion for this material, having done this play on stage many many many years ago.(1982)....It took a lot of years, but she finally got the movie made. Her performance is very very good....As many of you may already know, she plays a woman, pretending to be a man, working at a small Hotel in England at a time when women had no 'rights', whatsoever....It is a brave performance and I admire her for her commitment to this material. Janet McTeer, another incredibly talented actress, is also playing a woman pretending to be a man working at painting homes and other odd jobs....Her performance is superb......Glenn Close is nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress and for The Sag Award for Best Actress In A Film. Janet McTeer is nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, and for The SAG Award For Best Supporting Actress In A Film."WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN"......This is a very tough film to watch---often excruciating, in fact.....But Tilda Swinton's performance is about as brave as one can be. It is the story of a mother who's child grows up to be a mass murderer.....She doesn't know how to deal with him from the time he is a baby, and one feels her hatred of him---and his incredible disdain for her---we watch him deliberately taunt her. Meanwhile, the father never sees any of this---the boy deliberately and cunningly hides his true feelings from his father....The culmination of the boys insanity(?) comes when he murders a lot of people all at the same time. Like I said, it is very tough to watch this story unfold.....But, Tilda Swinton deserves her SAG Nomination for Best Actress In A Film. She did not receive an Oscar Nomination and honestly, I will never understand that.....!"BRIDESMAIDS".......I was not crazy about this film.....I really have a hard time with lots of people throwing up and pooping all over the place---I do not find this kind of of 'low' humor funny, at all---I also find that certain "bits" go on too long, as they do on SNL, and what might have been somewhat funny gets really tiresome, to me. Sorry folks, this picture was just not my cup of tea, at all. And, forgive me, but I also do not understand Melissa McCarthy being nominated for an Oscar in the Best Supporting Actress category and for The SAG Award in the same category---Oh, Lord, I really sound like an old grouch, but....it's just my opinion.........

Having already written a post about "THE HELP" I will just remind you that three Actors are Nominated for Oscars: Viola Davis, Best Actress. Octavia Spencer and Jessica Chastain, both nominated for Best Supporting Actress Oscars and all three in the same category's for The SAG Awards......We will have the SAG Award answers very soon after I publish this post. Also, having written about both "The Descendants" and "The Artist" each of these pictures have multiple nominations in many category's--Including Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress,. etc., etc., etc........Stay Tuned.......

There are many more films and they will be coming along very soon.....I hope I'm not boring you to death with these Film Posts.....



More To Come........


Note: 7:10pm, Sunday, January 29, 2012...I am thrilled to say that Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer both won the SAG Awards in each of their category's, AND, that "THE HELP" won the SAG Best Ensemble Of Actors In A Motion Picture, Award......Thrilled, Thrilled, Thrilled.....!



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Wednesday, January 25, 2012
the help

"The Help".....I liked this film a lot! I think it is an important film in many ways---the most important thing about it being that many people don't know about that time in our country, 1960's, Jackson, Miss. Many young people are not familiar with the incredible racism that existed in that period---not just in Jackson, Miss., but all over the South and in the North, as well. It is a great History lesson and a reminder of the bravery of many people of color during those dark days of The Civil Rights Movement---plus, it addresses the very important relationships of black maids and the white children they helped to raise and to whom they gave so much love........The film is based on the book, 'The Help' by Kathryn Stockett. The screenplay was written by Ms. Stockett and Tate Taylor, who also Directed the film.....The performances are stellar---Viola Davis, once again, brings such a reality and truth and so much humanity to the screen in the role of 'Aibileen'----there is never a false moment in any performance of hers---(I just watched another film that she is in, "Trust" and again, you are not watching "acting"---you are watching someone "be"----) and in "The Help", once again, hers is an Award winning performance. It is moving and thoughtful in every way----the character of Aibileen "lives", through her.....Everyone in it is wonderful----Octavia Spencer, who plays 'Minny' and who has already won a number of Best Supporting Actress Awards is terrific.....! Above....Octavia Spencer with Jessica Chastain, playing 'Celia Foote'....A superlative performance by a really wonderful young actress......Emma Stone and Allison Janney, (above) who play mother and daughter, are both superb---Emma Stone plays 'Skeeter', the writer who convinces Aibileen to tell what it is like to be a black maid living in Jackson, Miss and to work for a white family, with all the prejudices and humiliations that went along with that.....They're collaboration results in a book that is published, exposing the truth. They are joined by quite a few other maids, telling they're stories, as well. This film is about the courage it took to do this at that time in the early 1960's in Jackson, Miss. If you haven't seen this film.....Do!I wrote this post, finishing it just before the Academy Award Nominations were revealed Tuesday A.M., but...it's no surprise to me or to anyone who has seen this very beautiful film that numerous nominations were handed to "The Help". In the Acting category: Best Actress, Viola Davis. Best Supporting Actress: Both Jessica Chastain and Octavia Spencer were Nominated. And, last but not least, the film itself was nominated for Best Picture. And....incidentally, Viola Davis, (Best Actress) Jessica Chastain and Octavia Spencer (Best Supporting Actress) are up for the SAG Awards, as is the cast for 'Outstanding Performance By A Cast Of A Motion Picture'....You can watch this 'live' show, this coming Sunday, January 29th on TNT and TBS.....These are the Awards I vote on......



More To Come........


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Thursday, January 19, 2012
the artist

"The Artist" is a charming film with some wonderful and very sweet things about it....It is basically a 'silent film' that takes place just as sound is about to come into the film business, (changing it forever), and the effect this change to 'sound' has on one particular Silent Screen Star.....It is a very enjoyable film and has a feel-good ending....plus, the cutest Jack Russell we've seen since the television show "Frasier". For my money---he, 'Uggie" steals the movie.....This past weekend "The Artist won three Golden Globes....garnering a number of other Awards earlier in 2011 and 2012---some big 'wins', I might add.....It is original in many respects and we certainly haven't seen anything like it---well, maybe ever. Still, it wouldn't be my pick for, The Best Picture, at Oscar time....Just my subjective opinion folks...But, I would say if you haven't seen it---you should because it is a very very enjoyable experience!There has been a bit of a brouhaha about the Musical Score. Actress Kim Novak took a full page Ad in Daily Variety, protesting the use of already written music for part of the score for 'The Artist'---and incidentally the composer of the score for 'The Artist', Ludovic Bource, has won a number of Awards for this score and frankly, I have a problem with that too, just as Kim Novak does....And here is why. The filmmakers of 'The Artist' have used 6 minutes and 20 seconds of music written by Bernard Herrmann for the James Stewart, Kim Novak, Alfred Hitchcock film, 'Vertigo' in 'The Artist'. The "Vertigo" (1958) score is a very well known score---and the 6 min section of music lifted from Vertigo is a very famous and memorable theme written for a very famous and memorable scene in the film "Vertigo"........Mr. Herrmann was one of the premier Film composers of the 1940's and 1950's and continuing almost into the late 1970's ("Citizen Kane", "North By Northwest", "Psycho", "Cape Fear", "Taxi Driver", just to name a few of the films Mr. Herrmann scored).....Parts of "Vertigo" have been recorded for special albums/cd's featuring Mr. Herrmann's film music. I understand the filmmakers for 'The Artist feel that they're use of this music is a tribute to Hitchcock and Bernard Herrmann, a kind of homage, in fact....But the credit at the end of the film is lumped in with all sorts of song credits and there is no mention of "Vertigo" or Alfred Hitchcock...all it says is 'Love Scene Music' by Bernard Herrmann.....I think this is wrong---at the very least, if you are going to use 'original' music from another film, give it full credit. It is not like using Beethoven or Bach or Debussy---always given full credit, and rightfully so. It is using copyrighted music from another film---written especially for that film--I think this is very wrong for the Filmmakers of 'The Artist' to have lifted this music from another film, for they're film. Again, just my opinion, but I do feel very strongly about it.Anyway....this probably will not interfere with your enjoyment of this very delightful and original film---it is, as I said, a feel-good movie and we don't have too many of those, these days, so give yourself a real treat of an evening and go see "The Artist"---it's fun and a lovely story and, you will just adore dear Uggie......! Above....Jean Dujardin, the lead who has garnered quite a few Best Actor Awards......He is terrific! All the actors are terrific!...Go and enjoy!



Just two words about the film "Tree Of Life", again, just my personal opinion....Pretentious Drivel.....!






More To Come.........


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Saturday, January 14, 2012
a film worth your time

Because I am a member of The Screen Actors Guild, (Along with about 60,000 other people), I get to vote on The SAG Awards, which cover Television and Films....But, because I am 'confined' to my home, as most of you know, I don't get to see a lot of the current movies, though there are many screenings through SAG--(Frustrating as all hell, for me---I used to see everything even before it was released in theatres...) Now, I don't get to see them until they are released on DVD's....Except, if The Producer's of these films decide to send a DVD to all 60,000, Screen Actors Guild Members.....
Well....so far, I have seen:
"THE HELP"
, "MONEYBALL", "THE ARTIST" , "BRIDESMAIDS"
AND "THE DESCENDANTS" .....and then also---because these next two were rentable from Netflix----I have seen: "MIDNIGHT IN PARIS" and
"THE BEGINNERS". And a dear friend lent me: "A BETTER LIFE".....I will write about these films in the next few posts---but for this post, I want to talk about "THE DESCENDANTS"......I really loved this film....Alexander Payne, ("Sideways") Directed this film and Co-Wrote the Screenplay. It is a wonderful script and a very touching film, as well as being quite funny......George Clooney is utterly superb, playing a character we have not seen him play before! He is the father of two young girls---and both these young actresses are wonderful----The older daughter, played by Shailene Woodley is quite extraordinary!! It will be interesting to watch where her career takes her. It should be a very very big career, I dare say.....When the film begins we find out that his wife, who is the girls mother, is in a coma, having been very badly injured in a boating accident. Hard decisions must be made. The story unfolds in a very fascinating and sometimes surprising way.....It is filled with so much humanity and the kind of conflicts that effect so very many family's and so very many married couples and the children who are left in the 'wake' of their parents struggles......The setting is Hawaii....And that alone, held a certain nostalgia for me, having spent 14 weeks living on the Big Island, many years ago....In a certain way, the Beauty of the place belies the horror of what is happening to this family, but as Clooney's character says---very bad things can happen in what looks like Paradise. Hawaii is also a major and important character in the film, too. So much heartache in such a beautiful place. And more hard decisions must be made about some very large important family acreage....... I want to have an experience when I see a film---I want to feel things---I want to be transported to wherever it is any given film wants me to be transported to....."The Descendants" fulfilled all of that, for me.....I urge you to see this film, if you haven't already.....It is heart breaking, thought provoking and, very entertaining, too, and all the performances---down to the smallest part---are beautifully rendered.....You can't ask more from a film, in my view. Below, Clooney and the always wonderful Beau Bridges......And, I think George Clooney should win ALL the Best-Actor-In-A- Leading-Role 'Acting Awards' out there this year....! (He's already won The Critics Choice, and deservedly so......) And in all honesty, I am anxious to see this film again---so that's what I'm going to do later today. And I will savor every wonderful moment of it.....! Again, I urge you to give yourself an 'experience'---go see "The Descendants".........

More To Come.........




Note: I want to thank you all from the bottom of my very broken heart for your kind and caring words about the loss of my dearest Sweetie....These are hard times for me---I miss him so very very much....And the wonderful loving things you all said were so comforting and so very meaningful to me. It has helped me enormously to just get through the day---the hours---and sometimes, the minutes.....He was my dear dear little family. I know some people don't understand that, but I Thank God for all of you who do and did.....My heart is so full with your tender understanding. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.........And so, we press on as best we can........


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Monday, January 09, 2012
more sweetie

Here he is.....more of "The Mister"....
Okay. See, this is how I try to get through loss....I look at pictures and video's. It makes me feel better because it makes, in this case, dear Sweetie more "present" for me, even though I know he is gone.

Missing him is just too hard to bear, so, this helps me to bear his not being here a little bit better.....
I'm so glad I took so many pictures and video's.....
So.....here is a video of Sweetie playing with a toy. I know, every cat does this...But...BUT...this was my dear sweetheart who was doing it...My dear "Sweetie"......So.....Enjoy! It might make you smile or even laugh...Just like I did, when seeing this again!



video
And, below, here is another adorable little Video....We had a "visitor"; a funny little monkey named Rabies.....I LOVE the concentration in this one.....I laughed out loud upon seeing it once again......! Sweetie was so so Adorable!




video






More To Come..........


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Tuesday, January 03, 2012
my sweetie june 1, 1999 - january 2, 2012

So, the dreaded "Leakage" happened....his Temperature Spiked and he was listless and you could see he was not feeling well, at all......The choices were "terrible" and "more terrible"....Really, it came down to what way do I want to have him leave this mortal coil......So, the kindest and best thing for him was to put my darling little sweetheart, to sleep......I am Heartbroken. He has been my 'significant other' for twelve and a half years....So dear, so funny, so very very sweet and loving.....My house is empty. My dear friend Shawn drove me to the Vets and they brought him out to the car for me.....I had some very sweet special 'alone time' with him....And then the very dear Dr. Hue and a sweet young woman who used to come and give him his pills, Brianna, came into the car with me and after a while, it felt like it was the right time.....It was quiet and easy for him, Thank God, which is what I wanted.....These two women were so very sweet and loving---they loved Sweetie as much as I do----What was not to love?....He was as dear as any animal I've ever known. He died right there as I hugged him close to me.My house is so very empty.I cut off two little pieces of matted fur---mattes which I had been feeling on his 'rough' and had asked them to cut them off---but they didn't. So I did, today. Precious little pieces of Sweetie's soft soft beautiful white fur.....Such a very dear dear little special person....I thanked him for all the love and comfort he brought into my life---he was the perfect cat for me these last twelve and a half years and such a great Beauty, too, and such a humble little guy. How lucky I was to have him be my dear dear companion. My very dear 'significant other' with four legs and a long beautiful tail....I think he was happy here with me.....I know I sure was happy with him.....He lifted my spirits---even today with him just right there next to me, as sick as he was----he was so comforting. I hope I comforted him, too......I wanted to see him on his way in the best way possible......I think I did.....Oh My God, he was such a great cat....! And, maybe best of all, he always made me laugh and smile.Oh, My Lord, My House Feels So Very Empty Now.....




More To Come.........






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