Thursday, June 22, 2017

Bless Your Heart

.
The moss, Spanish and otherwise, hangs so thick and heavy around the Gothic girl's schoolhouse at the center of Sofia Coppola's The Beguiled that even when it's day-time it might as well be night - out of time, and place, but always there in its particulars. The reenactments, after all, rage on today - the flags and statues and misplaced civic prides beating at the heart of so many current conversations. Put on the uniforms and play out the same routines, over and over and over again, as if it isn't madness.

As Coppola's camera looms outside its gates at the film's ending you get the sense these girls have always been there and always will, a haunted chapter of the Daughters of the Confederacy out still in the woods today. The men arrive one by one by one, and they eat them up right after supper, as American as apple pie followed by a sweet aperitif and a song plunked perfunctorily on a long untuned piano. Don't forget this movie was made by the daughter of the man who dropped a Plantation House down in the center of the Vietnam Jungle as one more symbol of our country's ever echoing outward madness.

These little women are the lost specters of Charmed Southern Girlhood, incorporeal Scarlett O'Haras, forever stuck in the endless loop of knitting death shrouds and curtsies inside stiff dresses stained with soldier blood; a single erotic swamp hair dangling down their foreheads from the heat, frisked upward. A passion so close to the surface it's forcefully scrubbed and boiled and smiled over with a wave of kindness so blunt and malicious it might tear your limbs right off your body if you get in the way of anybody's lacy propriety. But don't you worry - they'll give it a proper burial, and wash you clean, bathe and feed and bed you and play a saccharine old-fashioned something to drown out the screams.
.

The Batch Ain't Bad (But It's Getting There)

.
Phantom Limbs dog The Bad Batch, but it's not the arm that Arlen (Suki Waterhouse) gets shucked by a gaggle of hungry desert ghouls early on in the movie that troubles the most - it's the ghost of Imperator Furiosa's robo-limb in Mad Max Fury Road, and it's the Machine Gun Leg of Cherry Darling in Planet Terror. Namely it's the amputations of better characters played by far far more interesting actresses - they're the real villains of The Bad Batch, because they ain't never gonna let a haughty posturing cipher whose best asset is her winking choice in booty shorts play their cool girl reindeer games. Sorry, Arlen. There's no room at the Inn.

And sad, without such a limp noodle in the lead I really could've gone places with The Bad Batch - there's whole lots to love stuffed and sauteed at its margins. Director Ana Lily Amirpour carries along with her all of the primo stylings she deployed so gorgeously in A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, plus a few new tricks to boot; where that movie was all slo-mo atmosphere and strange smoky shades-of-grays this one's burnt embers and bright cannibal chaos, popping with a full regiment's worth of forward-marching funk-a-delic capital C characters, all juggled with confident jazz hands from Amirpour behind the camera. Except the one that matters most.

Still when you've got Jason Momoa peering over both his bifocals and his two massive breasts, saying it all with a sly sheepish grunt and a grin; when you've got Diego Luna shimmying loose-limbed to a skittish beat as he crams cancer sticks down his boot-scooting y-fronts in a neon cowboy fog; when you've got Keanu fucking Reeves doing Late Stage Elvis astride an army of Uzi-wielding sister-wives... when you've got all this local color and flavor for the appetizer and the dessert, well you've got it pretty damn tasty. Just wish some salt could've made its way onto that main course, is all.


Take a Chance on Dom

.
Preacher is back this Sunday night and if all goes well (I'm always nervous they'll side-eye me and turn me away at the door at this kind of thing) I'm going to the New York premiere tonight, so somebody pour me a stiff one - yes Dom I am talking to you. Make it stiff! Anyway Dom's not supposed to be there (bastard) but Ruth Negga is, so I'll just have to tell her to deliver a message (probably the one about "making it stiff") back to Dom for me. Point being y'all should check my Instagram in a few hours if you want to see a blurry picture of any of that.

In other Dominic Cooper News, he's just confirmed that he will be returning for the Mamma Mia sequel! (thanks Mac) In a chat about Preacher the topic came up and he told Entertainment Tonight:
"It's kind of a phone call I've been waiting for for 10 years, so it was odd to finally get it... I mean, I was always surprised that it hadn't come sooner. They've finally come up with a story that they think is excellent enough to reignite the joy that the original was. Rather than it being forced and coming two years after the great success of the last one and just pushing out a storyline, that's not what this has been. This was finally someone [thinking], 'I've got it! I've got the key to this. I know how this can be good. And for that reason, it makes me very excited to be a part of it."
 .

I Am Link

.
--- Fierce Hairdo - It's just a teaser but I can already say with true and honest conviction that I am already infatuated with Jessica Chastain's villainous-seeming hint of blonde roots thanks to this look at them on the Death and Life of John F. Donovan poster via director Xavier Dolan - see the whole thing here. That said I want to see more of Kit Harington on the final poster - perhaps wearing jeans? - because of course I do. In case you missed that recent batch of pictures from the movie, click here. Donovan is supposed to be out sometime early next year.
.
--- Undead Director - The rumor we heard last month has now been confirmed - David Fincher's next movie will be the sequel to World War Z, starring once again his hot ass muse Brad Pitt. This will be Fincher's first film since 2014's Gone Girl so fine, whatever it takes to get him in the director's chair in. A Fincher Zombie Movie is certainly something to wrap one's head around, anyway.
.

--- Fashion Freak Out - I think the above tweet pretty much sums up my feelings on this news but let's fill in the actual details - Finn Wittrock has been cast in the Versace season of American Crime Story. He will be playing Jeff Trail, the first victim of Andrew Cunanan, played by Darren Criss. (See the first pictures from the show here.) I haven't read the book this is all based on so I might be wrong - EW describes Trail as a "friend" of Cunanan's, so maybe they won't have sex? Come on Ryan Murphy. Ya can't jerk me around like this. "True Story" be damned!
.
--- Bald As The Moon - Whiplash director Damien Chazelle is following up La la Land with a movie about the moon landing (based on this book) and I guess the first person cast was (of course) Ryan Gosling as Neil Armstrong, but now even better - Corey Stoll has joined the cast to play his fellow astronaut Buzz Aldrin! Although one thing that always bothers me about realistic space movies is those great big bulky un-sexy astronaut suits, so let's hope they find a work-around for that with Corey. Maybe we'll find out that Buzz was always naked in the shuttle? Why not? Anyway Kyle Chandler and the great Jason Clarke have also joined the cast so this thing's turning into a real Outer Space Stud Fest.
.
--- Bite Off - The two gents behind Benedict Cumberbatch's Sherlock series are next teaming up to reboot his shadow Victorian contemporary, a fellow called Drac. Dracula, that is. Hey it's got to be better than that Jonathan Rhys Meyers series, which totally wasted both Thomas Kretschmann and Oliver Jackson-Cohen in thankless supporting parts. (I'd support their parts, hardy hard hard.) Anyway this won't be striking any time soon, they say, but it will be released in intermittent movie-length bursts just like Sherlock is.
.
--- Corporate Hammer - Reading through the nutty plot description of Sorry To Bother You, an upcoming movie that Armie Hammer has just joined the cast of, it's hard not to think this is proof that the success of a movie like Get Out does have immediate positive repercussions:

"The film is about a black telemarketer with self-esteem issues who discovers a magical key to business success, propelling him to the upper echelons of the hierarchy just as his activist comrades are rising up against unjust labor practices. When he uncovers the macabre secret of his corporate overlords, he must decide whether to stand up or sell out."

I mean... that doesn't get green-lit without Get Out, right? But thankfully it has. Anyway as for Armie I am guessing he plays an executive or such. For such a beautiful blond rich straight white dude Armie sure does like diving into stories about queer people and people of color a lot, doesn't he? Good on him. (thanks Mac)
.
--- Fallen Feelings - The next Jurassic Park movie (I know we're supposed to call them "Jurassic World" movies now but I'm good, thanks) has gotten its subtitle and its first poster today - the film will be called Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Yeah, okay, sure. I wish I could be more excited - this being the franchise that turned me into a movie maniac in 1993 and all - but the last movie was such bollocks, and I've only grown to like it less and less with time. Anyway Jeff Goldblum is returning so there's that. I will try to be more enthusiastic... eventually... I promise. Fallen Kingdom though? I don't know. It's so clunky.
.
--- The Godfather of Gorey - Eli Roth is going to turn an Edward Gorey illustrated book into a movie! I am surprised that Hollywood hasn't turned to Gorey's stuff before this - it makes sense. Gorey did only illustrate this one though -- it's called The House With A Clock In Its Walls and it was written by John Bellairs in 1973; I guess it's one book in a 12 part series so who knows, perhaps Eli has found his Lord of the Rings. In less thrilling news the movie will star Jack Black, who gets on my last nerve 98% of the time, so there's that. Anybody read it?
.
--- And Finally the movie called God's Own Country is a gay drama that got a bunch of rave reviews at Sundance and Berlin earlier this year (from what I recall people often lumped it in with Call Me By Your Name, saying it was the better and sexier of the two) - it's out in the UK (where it's from) on September 1st and there's now a trailer and here it is:
.

.

Pretty Big Actors

.
I had no idea that this was the sort of thing roaming the set of Pretty Little Liars alongside my beloved Julian Morris -- it came up on Twitter yesterday and as I scanned through the cast list of that show my mouth watered and dropped, watered and dropped, at the endless parade of Twink Twank Twunks, on the show. Apparently Brant Dougherty, seen here giving Joe Manganiello a run for his muscle man money, didn't look at all like this when he was on that show - the beef came later.

Anyway speaking of da beef I just posted several more pictures from this photo-shoot over on the Tumblr so click on over for those. Muscles this big usually terrify me but that beard's giving Brant enough of a Brawny Man Gay Porn Vibe that I am managing to suffer through the terror somehow...


Today's Fanboy Delusion

Today I'd rather be...

... helping Ryan Reynolds with his abs.

Thing I just learned: there's nothing better to watch while cramming a third slice of pizza into your maw than a superhero movie god giving himself some bigger faster more shredded muscles - I timed my chewing to each crunch! One one thousand, two one thousand... This comes to us via Hollywood trainer Don Saladino, was just seen last week giving Sebastian Stan those boobs we know and love so much. He has a great job, you guys.


Who Needs Legs Anyway

.
The trailer for David Gordon green's film Stronger, starring Jake Gyllenhaal in the "inspiring true story" of a man who lost both of his legs in the Boston marathon Bombing, has been released - maybe you saw the new pictures from the film that we posted yesterday? Anyway the movie's out in September so we're finally seeing the goods - if this wasn't DGG directing I'd be a little less curious about the movie (I am not big on "inspiring true stories" in case you couldn't tell) but it is, and also...

... Miranda Richardson!!! I was just ranting and raving a couple of weeks ago about not seeing her anywhere ever when she should be getting so much work I've grown tired of her, and here she is, thank goodness. I hope she's got a good part and maybe she can eke out an Oscar nomination if the movie's well received. Lord knows she can eke out greatness from even the tiniest roles - she has plenty of times. So here's the trailer:
.
.
I don't have an opinion on Tatiana Maslany because I have never seen any of Orphan Black, but I know she is beloved by those who have so let's hope she's got a role to chew on too - mostly, to none of your surprise, I am just trying to figure out who the dude is that Jake's seen rolling around in the grass with for a quick second...


Five Frames From ?

.




What movie is this?
.

Jai's Gotten All Wet & Hot For Us

.
I know I watched the Wet Hot American Summer prequel series on Netflix subtitled First Day of Camp when it was released in 2015, I know I watched it like the day it was released, but it's weird - I remember basically nothing about it. I suppose I should re-watch? Any opinions on it from y'all? Anyway the sequel, long promised, subtitled Ten Years Later is dropping on August 4th and look who is showing up!

I might be the only person who watches that trailer, stuffed with comedy legends, and cares most about Jai Courtney being there, but I yam who I yam and who I yam is a Jai stan. (I should have that tattooed on my right butt cheek, probably.) Anyway do you guys think Amy Poehler had her pick of suitor, and she demanded Jai? I like to think that is what happened - she flipped through a catalog - I'll take that one! Here's the trailer:
.

.
In conclusion...

 ... what are you doing, Chris Pine???
.

It's Meryl's World

.
I went to a Q&A with the great Ann Dowd last night (an experience that I highly recommend) for a room full of actors (I am not an actor... but I play one on TV?) and the moderator was asking her about certain roles in her career and he brought up the 2004 remake of The Manchurian Candidate (Dowd played one of Meryl's fellow Congresswomen) and you might have thought that angels had descended into the room and began caressing Ann Dowd's face, as she beamed with light and love thinking about what it was like to work with Meryl Streep

So go we all. It is Meryl's birthday 68th today and it's somehow not yet a National Holiday so we'll have to make our own. I was trying to think up a different fun way to celebrate than the usual (nothing so boring as a list of my five favorite performances of hers) and thanks to Ann Dowd's extraordinary reaction my mind wandered to the people Meryl's worked with, and one of her finest screen partners (finest meaning a couple of things) in the past decade and a half has been Mr. Stanley Tucci, who she has starred opposite in both The Devil Wears Prada and Julie & Julia. So let's focus on that! As generous an actor as Meryl apparently is I don't think she'll mind...

.

Good Morning, World

.
If you've been wondering where Gendry has gotten himself to (especially after watching the great big brand new trailer for the next season of A Game of Thrones and he's nowhere to be seen)  well the answer appears to be - he's been wandering the woods naked as a were-person? Okay perhaps I'm mixing up Joe Dempsie projects - perhaps I just miss Joe Dempsie so damn much... 

... this werewolf thing actually pre-dates his spin on Thrones; it's called The Fades and it aired in 2011. (It is available to stream on Amazon right now.) Joe's been working steadily, at least, and it seems everything he does takes the opportunity to take his clothes off for a second or two - I guess being introduced on Skins does that to one's career. After the jump we'll share a little gallery of a few examples, oh and a happy 30th birthday to Joe today...

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Free Idea of the Day

.
.
Hey Hollywood, I am full of 'em.
Send me a note, we'll talk.
.

Today's Fanboy Delusion

Today I'd rather be...

... closing the blinds with Miguel.
(via)
.

The Screen Will Drip Red!

.
I think my kind words earlier today about Dario Argento's first film, The Bird With the Crystal Plumage - which just got dropped onto fancy 4K blu-ray, check it out! - summoned Argento-themed goodness into the world! How else to explain that less than an hour later comes word that a pristine nearly untouched 35mm print of the director's 1977 technicolor master-work Suspiria was just unearthed and it will tour across the country this summer thanks to a Chicago based Cinema Society that snatched the copy up! The news comes via Dread Central, who share this list of dates:

7/28: The Metrograph, New York City, NY 
9/16: The Belcourt Theatre, Nashville, TN 
Early Fall: Venue confirmed and TBA, Los Angeles, CA 
10/14: Coolidge Corner Theatre, Brookline, MA 
10/26+27: Northwest Film Forum, Seattle, WA 
Late Fall: Music Box Theatre, Chicago, IL

As for here in NYC Metrograph doesn't have the film listed
on their website yet, but they will no doubt soon. What a dream!
.

Pics of the Day

.
The first pictures from the new, Versace themed season of American Crime Story have been released by EW - you can see more here (including Penelope Cruz as Donatella). Pictured here are Edgar Ramirez as Gianni Versace, Darren Criss as Versace's murderer Andrew Cunanan, and Ricky Martin as Versace's long-time partner Antonio D'Amico. There are going to be so many speedos on this show, aren't there? In case you missed Darren and his itty bitty red speedo, click here. (And even better out of it right here.)

Jake Is a Work of Art

.
A quartet of new stills from Stronger, Jake's movie with director David Gordon Green about the marathon bombing in Boston, have been released -- you can check them all over at IHJM. That movie is out in September, but we've got word on a new new movie that Jake's signed up for! (thx Mac) He is re-teaming with the director of Nightcrawler Dan Gilroy for a movie set in the art world... which is all the info they're giving us. Oh except that Rene Russo, so terrific in Nightcrawler and not incidentally married to Dan Gilroy, will be Jake's co-star again. I can picture her in the art world easy enough though, since she already did it once, and very well at that, in The Thomas Crown Affair.


Follow That Bird

.
Several years before he was tossing dance students through painted glass and making Jennifer Connelly summon bugs famed horror director Dario Argento was making some of the most diabolically luscious giallo films that the world had ever seen, and will ever see - his very first movie, 1970's The Bird with the Crystal Plumage, is one of the finest examples the sordid genre has to offer.

And this week an exhaustive and extraordinary blu-ray edition of the film was released by the ever-incredible Arrow Films that I cannot recommend highly enough. I've never seen this film's colors, already a thing of wonder, pop like they do on this remastered 4K edition, and the extras are similarly saturated with bountiful gifts for your beckoning eyeballs. Hit the jump for a full list of what's what...


Karl Glusman Eight Times

.
I had thought we'd gotten all of this photo-shoot of Karl Glusman for Hercules Magazine when I'd posted it on the Tumblr earlier this month, but new pictures keep showing up in random places on Instagram and what not...

... so I'm just going to post everything I have seen here in this post and if I see more I will add to it. Voila! To my surprise I sure do like Karl with the pink hair (Zoe Kravitz is a lucky lady) so it's worth the effort. Hit the jump for six (for the time being) more...

Everything You Ever Need To Know About Life...

... you can learn from:


Paul: Nobody's born smart, Billie. Do you know 
what the stupidest thing on Earth is? An infant! 
Billie Dawn: Whadaya got against babies all of a sudden? 

The great Judy Holliday was born on this day in 1921.
.

Who Will Watch The Watchmen

.
A lot of people hated Zack Snyder's 2009 film adaptation of Watchmen - I was not one of those people. It is admittedly goofy times infinity at times, and the quality of the performances are all over the map, but all things considered I find a lot to like about it. What is good - Jackie Earle Haley, Carla Gugino, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Patrick Wilson's Ass - is very good, and I've found the film immensely rewatchable; I always get caught up in it when it's on TV. Snyder's schtick may've grown wearisome over his subsequent projects but he was still a director worth watching as of this movie.

Anyway the news hit last night that Damon Lindelof, the man behind Lost and The Leftovers, has now gotten his hands on Alan Moore's superhero comic deconstruction, and he's turning it into a series for HBO. I am... of mixed emotions on this. I feel as if my emotions would be less mixed if the actual finale, the final hour, of The Leftovers hadn't been so gosh-darn good - I was not a fan of the show even though I inexplicably kept watching...
.

... I might've quit it after the wet fart of a second season but when they announced the third was their last I figured I'd suffer through. Again there were enough goods in the good column to make it worthwhile - Ann Dowd, Carrie Coon, Justin Theroux's Ass.

But I felt very little for most of the characters by the end - they'd become so enmeshed in silly mystery I couldn't even see who they were anymore. Which is the same fate that struck Lost. And so I wonder if Lindelof might again get so wrapped up in Quirk & Circumstance that he can't see Dr. Manhattan's big blue beating heart for his big blue swinging dick.

Although dream casting the series could be fun, too!
Who would you cast now as The Watchmen?