Posts Tagged ‘The Wrestler’

The Slate: Megan Fox, Sex and the City 2, Endless Possibilities

April 3, 2009

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  • Oh, that Mickey Rourke. He got a faceful of Marisa Tomei‘s ta-tas in The Wrestler. Now Megan Fox might have a toot on his trumpet. Hey, get your mind of the gutter. Mitch Glazer’s Passion Plays will have Rourke’s horn-blower taking a carnival beauty named “Angel” under his wing and protecting her from a gangster type. Angels? Trumpets? Wings? Geddit? While the thriller itself sounds skippable, bloggers everywhere thank Mr. Glazer for giving them an op to post near-naked Fox pictures. (Hollywood Reporter)
  • We’re not done with Mr. Big. Sex and the City 2 will come again in theaters on May 28, 2010, giving heterosexual men only a year and a month to steel themselves for another two-and-a-half-hours of drag queens who lunch. Warner Bros. and New Line haven’t given any more details, but as they come in, we’ll have more opportunities to indulge in inappropriate homophobia. Note to the fanboys: Sex and the City: The Movie made $412.6 million worldwide, easily out-grossing a certain comic book movie we’re all tired of hearing about. (Variety)
  • “Stringer” Bell is pumping up his resume. Idris Elba and Zoe Saldana are joining Jeffrey Dean Morgan as The Losers. They’ll all play members of a special forces team who are left for dead, then try to erase their names from a CIA dead pool. Wait, doesn’t it usually happen the other way around? Elba will be doing cold and ruthless, Zoe will be doing wounded and tough, and Morgan is this Z-team’s Hannibal. (Hollywood Reporter)
  • If anybody wants Aaron Eckhart to play Two-Face again, they’d better have a word. The actor is filling up his future by falling into Rabbit Hole, which also stars Nicole Kidman. The play finds a family rocked by the sudden death of their four-year-old, and the audience thinking, “Hurry up and get on with your lives.” Hedwig and the Angry Inch‘s John Cameron Mitchell directs, so with luck there will be a song or two. (Production Weekly)
  • Meet the Parents director Jay Roach is currently helping Sacha Baron Cohen out with Bruno. So Paul Weitz is looking to jump into the helmer’s chair for Little Fockers, the third part of the comic trilogy. He’s the lesser known half of the American Pie team. Ben Stiller is expected to learn that Robert De Niro is his real father and Teri Polo will meet Ewoks. Actually, what we’ll really see is the sorry spectacle of Jake LaMotta doing changing diaper gags. (Variety)

Critical Bitchslap: A.O. Scott vs. Richard Brody

March 24, 2009

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Imagine a war between the New York Times and the New Yorker, and you might think of Walter Burns tossing inkpots at the effete Eustace Tilly. In fact, it appears to be the other way around. A.O. Scott’s elegant consideration of a certain type of American Neo-Realism has been blasted via a pugnacious blog post from Richard Brody. After an initial exchange of fire, both returned for another salvo. The various broadsides can be read here, here, here and here. But for those who would just prefer to fall asleep without moving their mouse, here’s Squally’s scorecard.

It all started when A.O. Scott, as is his wont, looked over a series of forthcoming films and attempted to write a serviceable trend piece colored with his usual thoughtful commentary. In the best New York Sunday Magazine style, he explained to readers something they presumably hadn’t noticed before and gave them a bit of a back scratch as well. That “something” was the adaptation of Neo-realist techniques by filmmakers like Ramin Bahrani (Man Push Cart) and Kelly Reichardt (Wendy and Lucy), occasioned by the release of Bahrani’s Goodbye Solo, Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden‘s Sugar and So Yong Kim‘s Treeless Mountain in the next few weeks.

These films, he wrote, represented “an urge to escape from escapism,” an alternative to films like Watchmen, Knowing, and whatever else they’re condemned to watch in Greeley, Colorado. Each has several features in common with the classics of the postwar Italian Neo-realist movement, films such as Roma, citta aperta/Open City, La Terra Trema/The Earth Trembles and Ladri di biciclette/Bicycle Thieves. They are made during a time of economic and political upheaval. They use non-professionals in fictional roles that are close to their real selves. They are filmed on location and make use of “unadorned, specific” locales (Rome, Winston-Salem, N.C., a mountain village in South Korea). They emphasize work–whether as a profession, at home, or in the school. Although Italian Neo-realism passed mainstream American cinema by, these films look to foreign movies and are intent in showing the “American life that remains off screen.” While subdued in nature, these films can be ultimately inspiring in how they portray strength/resilience in the face of adversity.

All seems innocuous enough. But not so for Brody the firebrand blogger at New Yorker’s Front Row. In a numbered list and with a shaky criteria that recalls the manner of his New Wave heroes (Brody has written the acclaimed Everything is Cinema: The Working Life of Jean-Luc Godard), Brody swings at the Old Grey Lady’s oracle … and swings wildly.
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Mickey and Scarlett: Iron Man and the Sunglasses Question

March 12, 2009

iron-manGreat Ceasar’s Ghost! Nikki Finke has gotten out her Marvel Ouija Board and the backroom spirits are speaking to her. The Deadline Hollywood Daily doyenne has broken the news that Mickey Rourke is going to play a Russian bad guy in Iron Man 2. She also shares that Scarlett Johansson, unfazed by her flirtation with fascism in The Spirit, is also taking another hit on the comic crackpipe. She’s set to play Black Widow, a Russian bad girl. And if you don’t know any Russian bad girls, then you’ve never had your wallet lifted.

The undercurrent of Finke’s reporting is that Marvel are a bunch of chisellers. Having said “bye bye bye” to Terrence Howard because he was the priciest guy on the cast, the studio attempted to low-ball both Mickey and Scarlett. But while Marvel went dry, Rourke was still pissing. Johansson might want to have a word in her agent’s ear.
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