J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby ITALIANO » Fri Nov 18, 2011 4:51 pm

Interestingly, in Italy we tend to see our (long) history mostly through its negative figures - we seem to have an obsession with them. And it's not like we didn't have our positive figures, but I guess we just find the good ones too banal. A mistake, which leads us to be too tolerant towards the "bad guys" of today - one, for example, has just recently resigned from Prime Minister.

Still, I mean, J. Edgar Hoover represents a side of American history that even young Americans should know about - from books, at school, not just from a movie.

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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby Mister Tee » Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:33 pm

I think the whole "obscure Hoover" talk came from studio marketers, for whom no one but the 15-25 multiplex crowd exists -- there was a lot of "how does Eastwood expect to sell a movie about a guy of whom these youngsters have never heard?" The answer, of course, is that the audience (as for most of Eastwood's films) is over-25's, many if not most of whom are well familiar with Hoover, even if as a punchline by now (I remember Billy Crystal making Hoover-in-a-dress jokes one time he hosted the Oscars). And, for Christ's sake, the character did appear in Public Enemies just a year or two back, and remains a hugely well-known name 40 years after his death.

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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby Dien » Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:25 pm

ITALIANO wrote: By the way, in this and other movie-related boards Americans often refer to J. Edgar Hoover as "obscure", "not very well known", etc. Hello? We are talking about one of the most important, influential figures in American history - what do you study at school? Only Washington and Lincoln?


You're not too far from the truth. Just add MLK Jr. and JFK and you have the stardard curriculum for U.S. history for grades 1-12.

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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby Big Magilla » Fri Nov 18, 2011 7:54 am

I don't get all this talk about J. Edgar Hoover being an obscure figure at all. I still haven't seen the film, but most of the criticisms against it have to do with the film's structure and focus which is apparently all over the place. Also, there is nothing new in it. Even the MLK stuff was inlcuded in the 1977 film, The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover with Broderick Crawford. They were reiterated in the 1993 documentary, The Secret File of J. Edgar Hoover[/i.]

As for DiCaprio's Oscar chances. He's still considered a major contender by most of the prognosticators but no longer the front-runner that some had considered him. Meanwhile all those same people who doubted Merl Streep's chances have now put her back in the race as the one to beat now that the U.K. reviews of [i]The Iron Lady
have come out. It's apparently a rather tame middle-of-the-road biopic that neither liberals nor conservatives like very much, but everyone raves about her performance.
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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby ITALIANO » Fri Nov 18, 2011 6:51 am

Getting back to J. Edgar (which of course I haven't seen yet), well, on paper, unless it's a huge flop and Best Actor is very, very crowded this year, it's difficult for Leonardo Di Caprio NOT to be nominated. After all, this is an actor who was EVEN nominated for Blood Diamond, who's in a Clint Eastwood movie, who plays a real-life person from young to old, and who, while officially straight, plays gay. I mean, it sounds even too much like the perfect role for an Oscar nod (and for the Oscar itself, except that from what I hear it's a very competitive race).

And has anyone here seen the pevious Hoover film? It's a strange B-movie from the 70s with an interesting cast called The Private Files of J. Edgar Hoover. I saw it as a child, so my memory of it is very confused.

By the way, in this and other movie-related boards Americans often refer to J. Edgar Hoover as "obscure", "not very well known", etc. Hello? We are talking about one of the most important, influential figures in American history - what do you study at school? Only Washington and Lincoln? But then this is probably a side of American history that the young and innocent shouldn't know about - which says alot.

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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:20 pm

It should be remembered that non-white women were not given leading roles in major films until Dorothy Dandridge broke through after her Oscar nomination which was itself an all-black cast film. She crossed the color line, so to speak, to have on-screen romances with white actors in some of her later films. Hispanics and Asians are less represented by African-Americans, but the few minority women that have won include a few that represent the young and oretty mold - Ria Moreno, Miyoshi Umeki and of course Halle Berry. Neither Meryl Streep nor Glenn close nor Viola davis qualify as young and pretty. This year that would be Charlize Theron, Michelle Williams and a few others. If tradition prevails, Michelle williams as Marilyn Monroe would be the more likely winner than either Streep, Close or Davis. Now that the U.K. reviews for The Iron Lady are coming in, Streep is once again considered the front-runner.

P.S. Anglo-Indian Merle Oberon was not known to be Asian at the time of her Oscar nomination, a fact she kept hidden her entire life. Besides which she was playing, as she usually did, a high class Englishwoman. It was until after her death that rumors long circulating in Hollywood were proven to be true and that the woman she passed off as her maid was actually her Indian mother.
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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby rolotomasi99 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:17 pm

Sure, but that is true of the other two groups I mentioned. If you are not a young, pretty, white thing, it is very difficult to be nominated in the Best Actress category and even more difficult to win. I think Meryl Streep or Glenn Close winning at their age would be just as remarkable as Viola Davis winning.
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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:54 pm

Correct.

African-American nominees and winners by category:

Lead Actor - 16 nominations, 4 wins
Lead Actress - 8 nominations, 1 win
Supporting Actor - 15 nominations, 4 wins
Supporting Actress - 16 nominations, 4 wins
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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby Mister Tee » Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:44 pm

I believe what Magilla was saying was, of the four acting categories, the one that's had the fewest African-American nominees is best actress.

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Re: J. Edgar reviews

Postby rolotomasi99 » Thu Nov 17, 2011 9:32 pm

Big Magilla wrote:They're already starting to do the same thing this year, reminding voters that African-Americans have had the least representatioin in the Best Acress acting category and wouldn't it be nice if they gave both distaff Oscars to black women?


Say what?

According to Wikipedia, the Best Actress nominations of folks not of 100% European descent breaks down like this:

Asian
Merle Oberon - The Dark Angel

Hispanic
Salma Hayek - Frida
Catalina Sandino Moreno - Maria Full of Grace

African
Dorothy Dandridge - Carmen Jones
Diana Ross - Lady Sings the Blues
Cicely Tyson - Sounder
Diahann Carroll - Claudine
Whoopi Goldberg - The Color Purple
Angela Bassett - What's Love Got to Do with It
Halle Berry - Monster's Ball
Gabourey Sidibe - Precious
"When it comes to the subject of torture, I trust a woman who was married to James Cameron for three years."
-- Amy Poehler in praise of Zero Dark Thirty director Kathryn Bigelow

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Re: J. Edgar reviews and fall-out

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:17 pm

Not to put too fine a point on it, but when an Academy insider like Alec Baldwin sings your praises you'd better believe his fellow Academy members are listening. Here's Baldwin's newly published take on Sid and Nancy:

Any film that propelled Gary Oldman to stardom is an important film, as I believe Oldman is the greatest film actor of his generation. The lives of the waifish/shrewish Nancy Spungeon and enfant terrible Sid Vicious make for a tough haul and present a somewhat jaundiced vision of the seventies punk scene. However, Sid and Nancy features director Alex Cox at the peak of his talent, cinematography by the great Roger Deakins, and a wonderful, damaged kookiness from Chloe Webb. But it’s the preternaturally gifted Gary Oldman you can’t take your eyes off of.
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Re: J. Edgar reviews

Postby nightwingnova » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:15 pm

It's hard to assess the most notable actor performances this year because we haven't been able to see them all yet.

From the trailers and other previews, Clooney and Pitt seem fine but not necessarily excellent. DiCaprio is a very hard working actor. His Hoover, though, looks ludicrous and is not giving me a reason to see it.

Dujardin seem inspired; Fassbender fine and sensitive; and, Oldman shows some promise to impress. Agreed that Oldman has not gotten the recognition he deserves for being a very talented, creative and dependable character actor.

I would throw Christoph Waltz into the mix here for Carnage. It appears to be an interesting portrayal. Narcissistic, self-centered, repressed, manipulative, sly, mendacious. Again, gotta wait for the film to open.


Big Magilla wrote:Mark Harris has an interesting article on the rich pretty boys (Clooney, DiCaprio, Pitt) not getting much traction in this year's Oscar race and presents a soldi case for five others: Dujardin, Fassbinder, Harrelson, Oldman and Shannon with Oldman the only one who can possibly be called "due":

There is no ancient, teetery lion in winter contending for a Best Actor nomination this year, so while it might seem strange to position Oldman as the éminence grise of the race, if there’s anyone in the field who can benefit from “It’s Time,” he’s the one. It has been 25 years and 47 movies since Oldman failed to get the first Oscar nomination he deserved, for Sid and Nancy. Now, at 53, he’s still waiting to be able to add the words “Oscar nominee” to his c.v., and his underplaying in a role made famous by Alec Guinness might do the trick. Here’s a case where "It’s Time" works, because it really is time.

For the complete article go here:

http://www.grantland.com/blog/hollywood ... d-an-oscar

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Re: J. Edgar reviews

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:14 pm

Mark Harris has an interesting article on the rich pretty boys (Clooney, DiCaprio, Pitt) not getting much traction in this year's Oscar race and presents a soldi case for five others: Dujardin, Fassbinder, Harrelson, Oldman and Shannon with Oldman the only one who can possibly be called "due":

There is no ancient, teetery lion in winter contending for a Best Actor nomination this year, so while it might seem strange to position Oldman as the éminence grise of the race, if there’s anyone in the field who can benefit from “It’s Time,” he’s the one. It has been 25 years and 47 movies since Oldman failed to get the first Oscar nomination he deserved, for Sid and Nancy. Now, at 53, he’s still waiting to be able to add the words “Oscar nominee” to his c.v., and his underplaying in a role made famous by Alec Guinness might do the trick. Here’s a case where "It’s Time" works, because it really is time.

For the complete article go here:

http://www.grantland.com/blog/hollywood ... d-an-oscar
“‎Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats.” - Voltaire

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Re: J. Edgar reviews

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Nov 17, 2011 5:43 am

It's not as simple as that.

Since the inception of the Oscars there have been two types of voters - those who vote for films on merit and those who vote for films that are good for their careers. In the early days this meant voting for films that the studio was pushing. Now it's the ones that employ the most people on the theory that if a film that utilizes lots of artisans and technicians is successful it will lead to more films being made that will require the use of more artisans and technicians. Even this group, though, has limits. It wilnotvote for a film it genuinely doesn't like.

In the Bedroom was the kind of "little" film that from heh get-go attracted actors and writers, but did not have much support in other categories. Sissy Spacek was the front-runner for Best Actress and probably would have won that elusive second Oscar if it wasn't for the Academy's collective guilt in never having given a Best Actress Oscar to an African-American in a year when Sidney Poitier was being honored with a career achievement award and Denzel Washington was one of the leading contenders for the Best Actor Oscar. In other words, Halle Berry was in the right place at the right time.

They're already starting to do the same thing this year, reminding voters that African-Americans have had the least representatioin in the Best Acress acting category and wouldn't it be nice if they gave both distaff Oscars to black women? I haven't seen anyone suggest that this would be a nice year to do it since they've already honored Oprah Winfrey with the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian award, but I sense the Academy at this point is resistant on the theory that they've been there, done that. I'm sure that both Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer would prefer that if they do win it's because their performances were genuinely liked and not they are winning on tokensism. It will be interesting to see how it plays out.
“‎Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats.” - Voltaire

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Re: J. Edgar reviews

Postby Sabin » Thu Nov 17, 2011 2:51 am

Dien wrote
Then why nominate [In the Bedroom]?

Why nominate Gangs of New York? Why nominate any number of films that have a lot of money behind them? My answer is honestly that they do not watch these movies, that they just nominate either what sounds good. A good portion of the voting bloc doesn't have time to watch these films. So if you have an average Academy voter who is being successfully (one would imagine) lobbied by the Weinsteins, a film like In the Bedroom has a good chance of being nominated, while something as relatively unknown by the time of voting like Monster's Ball might not.
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