Monday, 11 June 2018

Alternate Best Supporting Actor 1991: Robert Patrick in Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Robert Patrick did not receive an Oscar nomination for portraying the T-1000 in Terminator 2: Judgment Day.

Terminator 2 is the effective follow up, though I still don't view in quite as highly as most seem to, to the first film about a machine designed for death being sent back to kill the future leader of mankind.

The difference this time around is the machine is this time sent to kill the boy John Connor (Edward Furlong) rather than his mother Sarah (Linda Hamilton), and that the original type of terminator the T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger) has been sent back also to protect the boy. In this we have the advancement of the villain, but also the advance of the performance of the murderous android. An early instance of that being Yul Brynner in Westworld which was a heavy influence on Arnold Schwarzenegger's performance in the first film. In both of those instances they were playing personifications of bulky brute force who were more intended to intimidate rather than blend in. Notably the performances of both mostly stressed though the idea that these were machines acting the role of a human not a mix of the two, again other than a few minor hints to the contrary. Robert Patrick is allowed to continue this tradition, though in a very different way as the T-1000. What is continued in the tradition is that idea of the machine being the overarching characteristic, which Patrick also uses in his performance, but the thin Patrick, a far cry from the bulky Schwarzenegger, requires a rather different approach to create a menace within the machine.

Now one form of this is the ability of the T-1000 blend in not only in terms of taking the form of some of his victims as a disguise but also to pretend to be a normal human being. This is shown initially within the film when we are first introduced to the character, which I believe was even an intended twist ruined by marketing, that there are no early indications that the T-1000 is a machine as we see him operate looking for John Connor as a police officer. Patrick is terrific in terms of realizing this sort off strange style of T-1000 as he assumes human interaction which portrays as good enough, but not quite. In that he shows that while you'd probably accept the T-1000 as human in a quick conversation things would seem a little off once you spend a bit more time with him. Patrick though does some careful here within his physical performance, which is a major facet of his work here, which a lack of aggression. He moves and speaks with almost too much ease and calm to the point it is unnerving knowing he is an evil machine, though it wouldn't immediately raise any flags for a normal human. Patrick efficiently creates a disturbing illusion as it isn't quite right, a machine assumption of what a human want to see rather than the genuine article. The highlight of this side being his horribly off-putting yet soft delivery of "Say, that's a nice Bike" to a police officer he's likely going to rob and murder.

Nearly the rest of his performance though is defined even more fully about this machine with the one purpose to kill his target with no regard for anyone or anything in its way. Patrick's physical performance brilliantly embodies this idea in every aspect. He creates an artificiality, however notable as this unique artificiality against say the more bulky machine movement previously seen in Schwarzenegger, and Brynner's performances. Patrick develops this idiosyncratic style within the entirety of his physical work that rather fascinating. He moves not efficiently though as human would move, but in his own way. This right within his running in particular that Patrick makes it seem appropriately swift yet wholly unnatural within how precise his movements are, but also how they are not of a typical runner either. This of course amplified by his complete lack of fatigue, but the very motions help to create the menace of the run that is unnerving. My favorite aspect of this though is probably the consistent face that Patrick bears. Patrick fashion a terrifying grimace that feels that of a bird of prey, and again is perfectly inhumane. He makes it this horrible creation of a machine fashioning this expression to put terror in his targets, and how he keeps it with only this singular emotion of a distant hate makes both his work remarkable but also likely contributed towards the iconic nature of the character. Of course this is not a great deal of variation beyond that, but nor should there be as Patrick is playing a machine with a singular purpose.  There is perhaps one moment that suggests otherwise at the very end of his performance where has been repeatedly shot by Sarah Conner and nearly killed until she runs out of bullets. This leaves his one action one could argue has some sentience as he does not simply go to kill again but first wags his finger seemingly to indicate his dislike of what she did. An outlier, though perhaps Patrick's greatest moment. It not only is creepy as Patrick maintains his unique expression, but even the finger wag is actually a great bit of acting by him strangely enough. He doesn't wag it only using the finger as human would, but rather more machinesque using the entirety off his hand to give the menacing gesture. I'll admit that's a lot on a single moment but I adore that moment. This performance, despite being in a bit less of the film than I remembered, I find it more impressive the more I think about it. Patrick completely reinvents this type of villain into a brand new original form, that uses ideas of his predecessors however in a brand new and wholly distinct villain.

110 comments:

Mitchell Murray said...

He's the best part of the film for me, which I hold in high regard to begin with.

Thoughts on the rest of the cast?

Calvin Law said...

Not a flawless film but it's always had a special place in my heart. Very surprised by the 5, though.

Bryan L said...

Louis and everyone: Which David Lynch film would you recommend to watch first if one wanted to check out his films? I have a friend who likes Twin Peaks and I've thought about recommending one of his films.

Calvin Law said...

Bryan: The Elephant Man and Blue Velvet are his most accessible, I'd say. If he already likes Twin Peaks to begin with though, stuff like Mulholland Drive could easily work on first viewing too.

Charles H said...

Yeah, i really appreciate this film, but it is flawed. Last time i saw it i thought Patrick was just fine so i'm shocked at the 5.

Robert MacFarlane said...

What's your full thoughts n last night's Westworld?

Michael McCarthy said...

I think Patrick did a lot to elevate a role that could have easily just been serviceable, but I think I would still go strong 4/soft 4.5.

Calvin Law said...

Thoughts on the trailer to A Little Stranger?

Bryan L said...

Calvin: Thanks. Funny you mentioned Mulholland Drive, since that was the first Lynch film I saw, and I actually wish I had started with Blue Velvet. I like Mulholland Dr. now though.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Pleasantly surprised about the 5. I'd probably give him a 4.5 myself, but he really does deserve credit for his character creation.

Luke Higham said...

Am I the only one who expected him to get a five. He was a 4.5 before this.

Luke Higham said...

My top 10 prediction is:
1. Goodman
2. Hopkins
3. Pesci
4. Oldman
5. Rickman
6. Levine
7. Sutherland
8. Patrick
9. Jones
10. Rickman

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Luke: Did Louis confirm that Levine might go up.

Louis: Your rating and thoughts on Bette Midler in The Rose.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your thoughts on the cinematography of Reds, The Last Emperor and Dick Tracy.

Luke Higham said...

Tahmeed: No, but judging by his original review, it's possible.

Luke Higham said...

Tahmeed: Not saying it will happen though.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Apparently, Stephen Boyd and Peter Finch were the original choices for Mark Antony and Julius Caesar in Cleopatra. Would have you kept them instead of Burton and Harrison?

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Anonymous: The fact that they ended up with Harrison and Burton instead of Boyd and Finch is the worst trade deal in the history of trade deals, maybe ever.

Calvin Law said...

Eh I doubt even they could've made anything out of that bore of a film I've still yet to complete. Finch could've been great, not sure if I could have bought Boyd entirely as Antony.

Calvin Law said...

So apparently Ed Harris and Jeffrey Wright are going lead (I think Harris is debatable), Evan Rachel Wood is going lead, Zahn McClarnon and Anthony Hopkins are going supporting, Thandie Newton in suppoting, and Peter Mullan, Jimmi Simpson and Jonathan Tucker in Guest.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

On the Game of Thrones front, both Harington and Clarke are going lead. I think they'll both narrowly miss out, although Nikolaj Coster-Waldau might finally get that overdue first nomination.

Luke Higham said...

Tahmeed: Even though he was my MVP of last season, I really don't want to get my hopes up for Nikolaj after being criminally snubbed for Season 3.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: Could I have your thoughts on 'Nothing' s Gonna Stop Us Now' from Mannequin.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Luke: Well, it's as good a time as any to finally nominate him. I think Dinklage's run might finally end (his last two nominations were undeserved), and frankly Harington would have been the only other contender in Supporting Actor.

Bryan L said...

Louis: It came out a couple of weeks ago, but your thoughts on the trailer to Papillon? And thoughts on the casting choices of Hunnam and Malek?

Calvin Law said...

Hunnam looks miscast, Malek looks somewhat promising, the film feels completely unnecessary.

Charles H said...

I'd agree. Remakes are unnecessary anyway especially remaking films like Papillon which are rarely referred to as a classic. But i think the performances will be the best part of Papillon

Luke Higham said...

Has anyone ever seen Hunnam in Green Street. Rivals Van Dyke for the Worst Cockney accent ever attempted on Film.

Calvin Law said...

I haven't but I've heard bad things. His posh-ish accent was actually pretty good in Lost City of Z though.

Matt Mustin said...

Luke: Here's the thing about Van Dyke though, that accent works for what he's doing, which is just having a lot of fun.

Luke Higham said...

Matt: I do agree with you actually, Hunnam's worse considering he's from the North East of England and is suppose to be serious.

Luke Higham said...

Whereas Van Dyke's fits the tone of the film he's in.

Bryan L said...

Calvin: I think Malek could work for Dega, but I don't have much faith in Hunnam as Papillon.

Charles H said...

Louis: Your top 10 acting moments for Anthony Perkins.

Louis Morgan said...

Saw Upgrade, has an entertaining techexploitation middle, though I thought its beginning and end were a little flimsy.

Not Tom Hardy - 3.5
Gabriel - 3
Not Dane Dehaan - 2
Hardie - 2
Not Douglas Rain - 3

Mitchell:

Hamilton - 4.5(She has just a couple moments that are just slightly iffy however overall this is a very captivating performance. She does well in terms of kind of making the transition of the character natural, even though we don't see the transition fully. She's very effective though in revealing those moments of the PTSD so bluntly and so powerfully particularly the moment where she sees Schwarzenegger again. She balances this well in showing both the moments of an more overt vulnerability that refers to both her trauma, and herself from the beginning of the first one. This against also though bringing this within a certain intensity that she effectively channels as part of what fuels her strength in moments. In that she remains convincing in playing both that as well as that confidence that she delivers a intensity with that connect to that trauma still.)

Schwarzenegger - 4(Watching it again his work only improved for me as he successfully recreates yet softens his work from the first film in an effective way. He is key in terms of the very slight arc of his character that he is actually incredibly instrumental in making it a whole lot less cheesy than as written by Cameron, and performed by Furlong. Schwarznegger actually delivers well in terms of making funny moments, and even genuinely moving one by just making the slight shifts while still maintaining a definite mechanical quality in his work.)

Furlong - 2.5(He has okay moments in there, mainly the ending but maaaaaan is he annoying. His performance is whiny, and really frankly lacking the needed charisma. He comes off as too much of a punk frankly to the point that it is hard to see him leading anything. This is not to say he needed to be some overly confident kid, but what Furlong does often feels tonally out of whack and laughable in the wrong way.)

Morton - 3.5(I find his performance is effective through just how earnestly he plays the part so clearly showing that his ambition comes from a most genuine place making the character's transition to giving it all up quite natural because of that as well as creating such a powerful sense of the fear associated with the realization of that ambition.)

Robert:

A complete sideswipe in terms of showing what the series is capable of, because I did not expect anything quite like it, which is essentially this nearly feature film amidst the season. To me the episode was the series at its best by taking the science fiction element, exploring that in detail, but doing with such a striking humanity so to speak. McClarnon's work is the biggest takeaway, and rightfully so, however he is wholly supported by some striking direction, particularly in its use of music. I loved how it managed to give us all of Akecheta's story in a single episode, make it so poignant, and frankly he might now be the character I am most invested in, which is quite the achievement given he was just a background player previously.

Side Note: The episode only furthered reinforced the notion that McClarnon should have been the lead in Wind River.

Calvin:

I thought it gave too much away, however I love a good horror of this ilk which this does look like it has the potential to be. The cast also looks promising in particular Will Poulter.

Louis Morgan said...

Tahmeed:

Midler - 5(Her performance took me a bit to come to, but it actually is pitch perfect for the role. In that she plays a complete mess and in that sense Midler delivers a complete mess, though with the right sense. It's a performance that is completely different from anything else she ever did on screen in portraying this particular charisma. She has that stage presence so to speak of someone truly larger than life, but it goes further than that. She finds the charisma in the mess in a way creating this energy in just how unpredictable she is. She distinguishes well though the different sides of her personalities depending on the situation. In that she is the biggest on stage, where she purposefully broadens the extremes. She's still a mess the rest of the time however she tones it down to a more naturalistic more personal level. Midler finds though that she is never well creating the sense that even in her quieter moments there is this extreme vulnerability fitting a woman on the edge, balanced by her more flamboyant moments she shows as almost defense mechanism from fully accepting reality.)

Anonymous:

Reds's cinematography is probably its greatest feature, as I love looking at the film, even as I find it dramatically inert. Vittorio Storaro's work is a gorgeous balance of beautiful intimacy, and grander scale. His crowd shots are particularly effective in the framing specifically makes you feel within the shot, rather looking at it. His lighting evokes a certain nostalgia, but also a sense of the specific time. It is beautiful yet bare reflective of the attempted lifestyle, or at least philosophy, of the people centered around in the film. It is romantic without being romanticized it is this brilliant mix of hypocrisies in a way, much like the film without the "brilliant" distinction since that works as visual though not so much as a film.

One of the best shot films, period. Storaro's work is simply on a point that is rarely found with even the best cinematographers. Now thematically his work amplifies the grandeur of the days of the pomp and circumstance of the Emperor, which stands in stark contrast to the barren approach to the prison scenes. Of course I'm not sure grandeur quite covers it. It seems to go beyond that with just how vibrant every color is, but also how flawlessly every shot is composed in terms of creating such an impressive scale that purposefully dwarfs our powerless lead. Every shot, even those purposefully barren shots (in their own way), are gorgeous in their own right and help to create that impressive atmosphere of the film.

Dick Tracy is not Storaro's finest hour, though not for lack of ambition. The film is that of a true master still, but perhaps a true master going in the wrong direction. Now no matter what it seems the film is still great in terms of framing and composition, which creates a grand comic book style to be sure. The lighting though I think falls into a little bit of a trap in that the work tries for both a saturation of colors while also trying to maintain gradients, which I'm not sure was the right choice. I still would never call it poorly shot, but the daring experiment doesn't completely work out.

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

Hard to save that film, but yes. Boyd could have gone either way, but Finch would have been a clear upgrade.

Bryan:

Film wise it actually looks decent, though lacking purpose in terms of being a remake. The original film is a good not great film, this looks like it could be a good not great film as well, which whatever. Malek looks like a good fit for Dega, and I could see him topping Hoffman in that role. Hunnam though is in a precarious position, which is trying to top McQueen at his very best. I don't think he's up for the job, and I don't even dislike Hunnam.

Charles:

Perkins:

1. "We All Go A Little Mad Sometimes" - Psycho
2. Wouldn't hurt a fly - Psycho
3. Javert's end - Les Miserables
4. Field breakdown - Fear Strikes Out
5. Fantine's death - Les Miserables
6. Fake Story - Pretty Poison
7. Finding the body - Psycho
8. Ending - Fear Strikes Out
9. Final confrontation - The Tin Star
10. Ending realization - Pretty Poison

By the way on a side note, Perkins has to be the least lead, lead in a film in Psycho. In that the film is indeed about him, however he has very limited screentime, and only three scenes, two very brief, from his perspective.

Anonymous said...

Louis how would you rank the cast of Legion for season 2?

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

1. Dan Stevens
2. Aubrey Plaza
3. Navid Negahban
4. Jean Smart
5. Jemaine Clement
6. Rachel Keller
7. Jon Hamm
8. Katie Aselton
9. Bill Irwin
11. Jeremie Harris
12. Hamish Linklater
13. Amber Midhunter

Bottom five are fairly interchangeable as they were mostly underutilized this season.

Calvin Law said...

For some reason I just couldn't get through the first episode of Legion Season 2. Completely agree on McClarnon and Wind River.

Calvin Law said...

Simon Quaterman was also great this episode.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your thoughts on the production design of The Life of Emile Zola and Lost Horizon.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: What did you think of the Dumbo trailer.

Louis Morgan said...

Calvin:

This season gets less accessible the further it goes, though I liked it, it is not for everybody.

Anonymous:

Life of Emile Zola, as typical with most Dieterle films, just has a far more impressive work in that regard. This is lower key for some of his film yet still you can see the attention paid to it, with, for the time in particular, a much richer more vibrant work done in terms of the amount of detail and substance within the period sets. They have a lived in quality, rare for the time, that matches both the time period, and grants a life to it.

Lost Horizon's production design is outstanding, and the sort of magnitude that perhaps was only possible in the old days of the studio system. This includes the fantastical, and iconic work of Shangri-La. That manages to be both futuristic and period, awe inspiring yet comforting. Of course that is only a part of the work as everything essentially is sets including some of the mountain landscape, and even the plane interior was particularly impressive for the time. Simply impeccable work.

Luke:

Well I have to say that surprised me as I expected to hate it and I didn't. Although the creative team, and general purpose of the film still greatly concerns me, the fact that it looks more Big Fish than any other Burton film is a very good thing, and nothing struck me as concerning, particularly not the cast. Although I will say the "sad version of song" trailer trend is pretty tired at this point, especially since "Baby Mine" is already a sad song.

Calvin Law said...

I actually thought that trailer looked great, and I'm actually really excited to see a Batman Returns reunion (as one of the few defenders of the film on here).

Bryan L said...

Louis: Your present film roles for Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas?

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: Your top ten most cathartic/satisfying scenes from films and television (two lists).

Charles H said...

Louis: Your thoughts on the ending of In The Mood For Love.

Louis Morgan said...

Bryan:

Lancaster:

Strickland (The Shape of Water)
Chief Willoughby
Lou Bloom

Douglas:

Officer Dixon
Ray Kroc
The Man (All is Lost)

Tahmeed:

Film:

1. "The Richest Man in Town" - IT's a Wonderful Life
2. "Smile you son of a bitch" - Jaws
3. Going the distance - Rocky (HM crane kick from Karate Kid, also all Rocky Victories.)
4. "You bow to no one" - LOTR: Return of the King
5. Killing the six fingered man - The Princess Bride
6. "Earth Angel" - Back to the Future (HM: George punching Biff)
7. Chief's Escape - One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest
8. Terry walking to work - On the Waterfront
9. Andy's Escape - The Shawshank Redemption
10. Sefton solves everything - Stalag 17

Television:

1. "I am the FBI" - Twin Peaks
2. Gus sense something amiss - Breaking Bad
3. "I should have let Stannis kill you all" - Game of Thrones
4. Love at last - Twin Peaks
5. Contempt - People VS O.J. Simpson
6. Neo Nazis no more - Breaking Bad
7. Kirk makes NOMAD error - Star Trek
8. First Stark Reunion - Game of Thrones
9. Bear Trap - Fargo
10. Facist's breakdown (The Obsolete Man) - The Twilight Zone

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: Could I have your thoughts on William Shatner's and Leonard Nimoy's performances in the original Star Trek series.

Luke Higham said...

Saw Fallen Kingdom. Hated it. Boring as hell and it made me appreciate The Lost World and III more.

Pratt was better here than he was in the previous film but I wish Neill or Goldblum (A minute and a half of screentime) led this film, would've enlivened it more.

Emi Grant said...

Joaquin Phoenix is the Joker now, apparently...

Bryan L said...

Luke: Not surprised to hear that Goldblum is wasted. And one thing a Jurassic movie should not be is boring.

Anonymous said...

Boy, it seems like people like to waste Jeff Goldblum.
Louis: Just one final cinematography question for today. Your thoughts on the cinematography of The Hill and The Spy Who Came From the Cold.

Anonymous said...

Louis: How do you feel Michael B Jordan would fare as Terry Malloy? His work in Creed and his general screen presence had shades of Malloy to me.

And how do you feel Ledger would fare as Freddie Quell (assuming Quell was a bit younger or around Ledger age)?

Omar Franini said...

Louis: are you going to check out Patrick Melrose anytime soon? I just finished it and Cumberbatch gives a terrific performance, his career best in my opinion. But i think Weaving and especially Leigh gave great performances too.

Before you finish 1991 could you also check these movies?
Malina and Madame Bovary (for Huppert, some of her best works)
Europa (Von Trier)
Butterfly Wings (for Silvia Munt)
Amantes (VerdĂș and Abril)
Mayrig (I really liked this movie and there are two great subtle performances by Omar Sharif and Claudia Cardinale)

Calvin Law said...

Huh, just saw Heridetary, hated the ending and need to give the rest of the film some thought, but I mostly dug it.

Bryan L said...

Anonymous: Ledger would've been great as Freddie Quell IF the movie had been made this year and he was still alive. There needs to be a sense that Quell has been through post-war hell for quite some time so I think that's why he's the age that he is in the film.

Michael B. Jordan's would be great in the part, though I'd say more based on his work in Fruitvale Station. And for fun:

2010s On the Waterfront, dir. by Ryan Coogler

Terry Malloy- Michael B. Jordan
Edie Doyle- Tessa Thompson (or Ruth Negga)
Charley- Daniel Kaluuya
Father Barry- Laurence Fishburne, though I'd like to see Clarke Peters in a meaty role like this
Johnny Friendly- Idris Elba

Louis Morgan said...

Saw Hereditary as well, I liked most of it, but just when it seemed like it might be doing something new in the genre it did something rather old and tired in its ending, which wasn't helped by a particularly terrible monologue that needlessly spelled everything out just to exacerbate things.

Charles:

Classic Wong Kar-wai in terms of being very obtuse in a way, in terms of how'd one traditionally would expect from an ending to such a story, but actually is rather captivating in its daring, sort of, strangeness. It works in being very subtle change in terms of representing the final lonely state of Leung's character, as he whispers his secrets to a rock while being all alone in a ruined monastery. A weird moment in conception yet beautiful in its own way.

Tahmeed:

Shatner - (Shatner's performance is this high wire act at all times throughout the series which he occasionally does fall right off. I will say though even at his most Shatnery moments "I'M CAPTAIN KIRRRRK, I'MMMMMM CAPTAIN KIIIIIIRK" it is a whole lot more interesting than the bland alternative offered by Jeffrey Hunter from the pilot. I'd take Shatner going over the top any day as Shatner at his very worst is at least wildly entertaining at the very least. Although he's become known for those over the top moments, that is not all there is to his work, though he certainly bring a definite energy to his work. An energy that often just works in terms of being engaging, but that too is not all there is. Shatner realizes Kirk as a unique an compelling character, but with truly dramatic moments in there that were not always ridiculous. The best example of this being the ending of City on The Edge Of Forever where Shatner's work is downright heartbreaking, and has more subtly within that was often expected of him. Now not every episode is that, however Shatner's work is enjoyable at worst, and actually rather powerful at its best.)

Nimoy - (Nimoy's work is in a way a little taken for granted, although at the time he was actually recognized for his work which notable, as it really set a standard in my mind for this type of performance. In that many have tried to replicate it inside the franchise, and out of it, including his replacement in Quinto, and have not come close. Nimoy's work finds this perfect balance in his crafting of a wholly original character in his Mr. Spock. An emotional role per se, yet never limited by that in Nimoy's deft hand in the role. Now in part this is because he makes this state of Spock compelling in itself, but even that isn't quite it. Nimoy knows to play with the idea and even play with it depending on the tone of any given episode. He plays with the idea of reaction, without a overt emotion, and how that is done to quote Mr. Spock is "fascinating". Whether that be through his legendary use of the eye brow raise, but also just the most precise delivery you'll see in any show. Nimoy find ways to infer emotion rather than overtly project it. He could so flawlessly adapt it towards any given situation though as moments where he becomes emotional in its own way, or overtly comedic in the best sort of deadpan way as well. Now there are times where Spock would get emotional, as required by a plot line, but that isn't what I refer to. He's fine in those instances, but the overall approach in crafting this compelling "unemotional" role is the true achievement.)

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

Well in both examples of Oswald Morris's work you see an attempt not an obvious beauty as is often the intention of cinematography, as both films deal in brutal worlds. In The Spy Who Came In From The Cold it is a that properly, in terms of the films thematic points, very much focuses on the greys. It very much the whole world either grey, or a pitch black which gives the film a particularly bleak look. It doesn't overemphasize this as Morris's work does have a less obvious beauty within it, in the film is pristine, yet carefully so in creating this paranoid experience not only through the greys emphasized through the lighting, but also the composition of scenes where all character are purposefully just off center with this isolating space in every shot.

The Hill, aka stopping worrying and love the use of the wide angle lens. The film very much rejects a traditional beauty, though carefully doesn't become ugly, which is when a film takes it too far. What it instead though is uses the right type of alienating techniques particularly that wide angle lens, as well as some specific purposefully not kinetic movement within scenes. It creates the right unease in a given frame. It distorts every image, which again thankfully Morris's work does not overdo, by effectively creating its own claustrophobic space that forces almost unnaturally close to the characters, except for the shots of the Hill that give the film its only bits of "grandeur". I love how the framing of the hill nearly always emphasizes the pointlessness of the endeavor by showing how it leads to nowhere, as this artificial hunk within the center of the frame.

Anonymous:

I could certainly see Jordan as Malloy, although he might need to project a bit more "age" than we've seen from him so far, but that hasn't been required of him so far either. Ledger again could go either way with his performances, however his willingness to take risks suggests he could have done well with the role or at least gone for pulling off the needs of it. No one could've topped what Phoenix did though in my view.

Omar:

I'll try.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Ratings and thoughts on the cast.

Louis Morgan said...

Hard to get into it properly without getting into spoilers. So I'll just start with the ratings for now.

Saving Wolff.

Collette - 5
Shapiro - 3.5
Byrne - 3.5
Dowd - 3.5

Luke Higham said...

So happy Collette got a five.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Could I have updated thoughts on Coster-Waldau and Cunningham in Game Of Thrones, I think your initial thoughts were written around the time season 4 was broadcasted.

Matt Mustin said...

Louis: Can you continue to hold off on thoughts at least until after next weekend?

Luke Higham said...

I don't mind waiting Matt, I probably won't be able to see it until it's online.

Calvin Law said...

For ratings, I'd go:

Collette: 5 (though she's probably my number 3 this year so far, after Thomasin McKenzie and Olivia Cooker)
Woolf: 4.5
Byrne: 3.5
Shaprio: 3.5
Dowd: 3.5

Luke Higham said...

Happy 26th Birthday Daniel

Luke Higham said...

Daniel: I'm 24 this year.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Happy birthday Luke and Daniel :)

Robert MacFarlane said...

I'd personally go higher for Byrne. Thought he did a wonderful, empathetic job at making up for the film's most underwritten character.

RatedRStar said...

Luke: Happy 24th Birthday =D

Tahmeed: Thank you =D

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Damn am I excited for the JFK cast review :D

Bryan L said...

Happy Birthday RatedRStar and Luke. I also turn 24 later this year, so cheers!

Tahmeed: Me too. I even watched the Director's Cut the other day in anticipation =D

Charles H said...

Tahmeed: Same, i haven't watched the film recently but the cast has stayed with me very well. One of my favorite ensembles.

Luke Higham said...

RatedRStar, Tahmeed & Bryan: Thank You. :)

Would love to have that review tonight.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: Will you be viewing the Director's Cut for JFK, or the original theatrical release.

RatedRStar said...

Bryan: Thanks

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday, Luke, Daniel and Bryan.
Louis: Although Schell was great in The Man in the Glass Booth, think Robert Shaw (who wrote the play the movie was based on) could have also worked in the part?

Bryan L said...

Anonymous: It's not my birthday yet, but my half-birthday is coming up soon :)

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Portugal vs Spain is turning out to be quite a match =D

Luke Higham said...

Tahmeed: I missed the first half. C'mon Spain.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

YES COSTA

Luke Higham said...

MOTHERFUCKER!

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

That was a brilliant match, I don't think any other game this tourney will top that. I may not be able to stand Ronaldo, and two of those three goals might have been lucky, but he delivered when they needed him.
I really did want Spain to win, damn it.

Charles H said...

That match was awesome, but i would've loved to see Spain win, but Portugal did a good job.

& Happy Birthday Luke & Tahmeed

Luke Higham said...

Charles: You mean Luke & Daniel.

The result is what it is, but it was certainly better than any match I saw at the previous world cup. (Netherlands V Spain and Brazil V Germany were memorable games due to their one-sided nature, especially the latter)

RatedRStar said...

Luke: More memorable matches please.... =D

Luke Higham said...

RatedRStar: All we need is a 4-3 and we're good. :)

RatedRStar said...

Luke: Even though Iran/Morocco was and Egypt/Uruguay weren't particularly good they did have the benefit of last minute goals which always helps =D.

Luke Higham said...

RatedRStar: Sure, even though one of them was an Own-Goal.

Louis Morgan said...

Tahmeed:

The director's cut, although for the performances at hand it only really makes a difference for Rooker.

Anonymous:

Most certainly.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your thoughts on the conversation between Hamilton and Toby in Hell or High Water.

Robert MacFarlane said...

Incredibles 2 is a letdown. At least it made me appreciate the first one a lot more, I guess.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: When do you plan on seeing Incredibles 2.

Your Half Way Oscar predictions for Picture, Director, Lead & Supporting Actor & Actress and your reasons why for each.

Luke Higham said...

Robert: Do you think it should of been set 10 years after the first film.

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

Well as I've stated before one of my favorite endings of recent memory. It is perhaps Taylor Sheridan's best writing as the dialogue manages to naturally illustrate the thematic point of Toby's quest without making it feel forced, but as this natural explanation. It just as naturally and powerfully though also measures that against Marcus's reflections on the cost of those acts. It brilliantly ratchets the tension through the remarks and the performance, and wisely David McKenzie directs the scene with the idea that there is more than enough tension within that. By keeping the shots so quiet, and just on both men, just allows that to build so well without trying to force it for a moment. I love most that it manages to feel a proper climax while still leaving some ambiguity through those final lines that are so well written, and so well performed by both Bridges and Pine.

Luke:

I'll see it sometime soon.

If you insist:

Picture:

First Man (Winner, I guess)
Widows
BlacKkKlansman
A Star is Born
Boy Erased
Mary Queen of Scots
Backseat (Aka Dick Cheney Movie)
The Front Runner
Old Man and the Gun

Obviously wide open at this point especially since the known quantity I have listed is BlacKkKlansman, which got pretty positive, although not "Masterpiece" reviews. A return to mainstream/form for Spike Lee with potentially prescient material could go further, but I'll wait on that. The success of Shape of Water though really suggests a "best Picture" film has opened up to more idiosyncratic fair, which somewhat defines that inclusion with Lee's film, and Widows.

First Man feels like a safe enough bet at the moment, though I do think Chazelle is going to get his "Live By Night" hatchet job sometime soon, deserved or not. McKay's ease in getting in "The Big Short" suggests he probably could easily followup. If Lowery pulls it off The Old man and The Gun could be a welcome to the club for him.

Boy Erased and A Star Is Born you have two actor turned directors one with a potential sort "heavy emotional" player and then Cooper's potential crowd pleaser. The academy loves when actor turned directors pull it off so I think both could make it here.

Front Runner another potential "zeitgeist" film, plus if Reitman pulls it off, along with the already existing critical success of Tully, it would be easy to invite Reitman back.

Then rounding it out with Mary Queen of Scots as a proper Academy period piece, hopefully it's better than the last film with that name.

Louis Morgan said...

Director:

Spike Lee - BlacKKKlansman (Winner)
Damien Chazelle - First Man
Bradley Cooper - A Star is Born
Steve McQueen - Widows
Josie O'Rourke - Mary Queen of Scots

Again not sure if the reaction is quite there, but who knows Lee is seen as overdue in some people's eyes. Chazelle seems a safe enough bet as well. The academy loves Cooper, so if he pulls it off I could see them going all in for him. If Mary Queen of Scots is good, I could certainly see a strong push for O'Rourke to get in.

Actor:

Willem Dafoe - At Eternity's Gate (Winner)
Ryan Gosling - First Man
Christian Bale - Backseat
Bradley Cooper - A Star is Born
Hugh Jackman - The Front Runner

At Eternity's Gate is even more of a ?, however if it is good I could see the goodwill of last year pushing Dafoe at the very least towards a return nod, with Van Gogh certainly being a meaty role. Gosling's role could be too subtle, but if the film is the success I'm predicting now I could see him still making it. Again keep the Cooper love going if that is the case. Bale and Jackman could make an interesting pair of nominations, again if the old "zeitgeist" is working, plus both obviously well liked. Left off Redford due to his campaign aversion, although if the film is just THAT loved, I could see him getting in anyways.

Actress:

Saoirse Ronan - Mary Queen of Scots (Winner)
Viola Davis - Widows
Lady Gaga - A Star is Born
Amy Adams - Backseat
Carey Mulligan - Wildlife

Ronan seems like she's working her way to that win very soon, this seems like an easy way for it. From that trailer alone it seem like Davis is probably in. Again A Star is Born must be well loved but if it is they'll go all in. Adams could go supporting, but seems an easy enough nomination particularly after that painful Arrival snub. And how about Mulligan gets in again finally, why not.

Supporting Actor:

Daniel Kaluuya - Widows (Winner)
Joel Edgerton - Boy Erased
Oscar Isaac - At Eternity's Gate
Sam Rockwell - Backseat
Sam Elliott - A Star is Born

Going off a limb of that trailer that Kaluuya is going to be a scene stealer, and afterglow never hurts. Edgerton's part sounds like it has potential, plus it would be a way to get him in without director. Again big ? for At Eternity's Gate, but Quinn did it why not Isaac who has been waiting for the right role for that nomination. Rockwell seems like a very easy after winning nomination given his role. And why not Sam Elliott, he's been delivery great work in not great films, maybe he'll finally do that in the "right" film.

Supporting Actress:

Margot Robbie - Mary Queen of Scots (Winner)
Nicole Kidman - Boy Erased
Claire Foy - First Man
Sissy Spacek - Old Man and the Gun
Vera Farmiga - The Front Runner

Hey why not get both of last year's non-winners an Oscar in one fell swoop. Then again maybe the film will fail, but both seem promising prospects at the moment. Kidman's role is potentially very juicy, and the Academy loves her. Foy seems perfect for "supportive/concerned" wife role. If Redford isn't game, perhaps all the love could go right to Spacek. Farmiga got her first nomination with Reitman, could happen again in a potentially more complex wife role.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Is there any possibility of Kursk and Radegund appearing at Venice.

Louis Morgan said...

Luke:

It's possible for Radegund as Malick never seems to go to the same festival twice in a row. Kursk I think will probably play either there or Toronto as it already has STXfilms as a distributor so I would imagine they're probably going for a critical reaction before setting a release date.

Calvin Law said...

My predictions:

Picture:

First Man (Winner)
Widows
BlacKkKlansman
Leave No Trace
Boy Erased
Mary Queen of Scots
Backseat (Aka Dick Cheney Movie)
A Star is Born
If Beale Street Could Talk

Director:

Spike Lee - BlacKKKlansman (Winner)
Damien Chazelle - First Man
Steve McQueen - Widows
Debra Granik - Leave No Trace
Barry Jenkins - If Beale Street Could Talk

Actor:

Ryan Gosling - First Man (Winner)
Willem Dafoe - At Eternity's Gate
Christian Bale - Backseat
Hugh Jackman - The Front Runner
Lucas Hedges - Boy Erased

Best Actress

Toni Colette - Hereditary (Winner)
Thomasin McKenzie - Leave No Trace
Saoirse Ronan - Mary, Queen of Scots
Carey Mulligan - Wildlife
Viola Davis - Widows

Best Supporting Actor

Daniel Kaluuya - Widows (Winner)
Joel Edgerton - Boy Erased
Sam Rockwell - Backseat
Steve Carell - Backseat
Timothée Chalamet - Beautiful Boy

Best Supporting Actress

Margot Robbie - Mary Queen of Scots (Winner)
Nicole Kidman - Boy Erased
Claire Foy - First Man
Sissy Spacek - Old Man and the Gun
Amy Adams - Backseat

Bryan L said...

Louis: Your present film roles for William Holden? And do you think he would be a good fit for a 60s Iron Man (assuming he first plays the role in 1958)? I saw Stalag 17 the other night and he seemed to have the sensibilities for it.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: When will the review be posted.

Mitchell Murray said...

Calvin:

Nice list. I haven't heard of Dafoe's or Mckenzie's movies though.

Anonymous said...

Louis: your top 20 jeff daniels acting moments

Matt Mustin said...

Saw Incredibles 2. REALLY enjoyed. It's nowhere near the greatness of the first one, which is one of my favourite movies of all time, but what it is is a hugely entertaining superhero movie with *extraordinary* animation. Terrible villain, though.

Hunter-4
Nelson-3.5
Vowell-3.5
Milner-3
Jackson-3
Odenkirk-3.5
Bird-3
Keener-3
Rossellini-2.5(She's actually fine, there's just nothing to her role, which is a shame because she's got such a great voice.)
Banks-2.5 (Same as Rossellini)

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your thoughts on the special effects and makeup of The Fly.

Calvin Law said...

Mitchell: Leave No Trace is easily my favourite film of 2018 so far, and it'll take something pretty great to top it, which by the way my top 10 list is:

1. Leave No Trace
2. Isle of Dogs
3. Avengers: Infinity War
4. Thoroughbreds
5. Black Panther
6. Deadpool 2
7. A Quiet Place
8. McQueen
9. Hereditary
10. Game Night

Won't be able to see Incredibles till July earliest.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your cast and director for a 80's Baby Driver.

Louis Morgan said...

Let me answer those next post.