Everybody’s Chattin’ – Great blogathons, reviews & more!

EverybodysChattin

Hello everyone! I can’t believe I actually missed doing this community-building post last month, shame on me!! Well, to make up for it, I’ll be doing two Everybody’s Chattin’ posts this month 😀

It’s been a while since I’ve done any blogathon so let’s start with the two I’ll be participating this month.

Andy of Fandango Groovers invited a bunch of bloggers to participate in the Captain America Blogathon, which is to come up with 10 movies to recommend to someone who’ve been frozen from 1943 – 2011. I made a banner I’ll be using for the post. Feel free to use it if you’re participating on your blog 😀

CaptAmericaBlogathon

Now, here’s something even more special as it’s Cinematic Corner‘s first ever blogathon! Sati was inspired by a list she was working on that was so cool she had to invite fellow bloggers to participate. Read all the details on her blog and participate in the Spin-Off Blogathon!

SpinOffBlogathon

Now on to some awesome reviews & articles:

OnlyLoversLeftAliveChris reviewed the one vampire movie I can’t wait to see Only Lovers Left Alive starring Tom Hiddleston & Tilda Swinton.

Mark reviewed the much-maligned Ridley Scott’s thriller The Counselor in which he couldn’t disagree more with the critics.

Josh aka JJames posted a few movie reviews of yesteryear which includes classics from the likes of Coppola, John Hughes, Hitchcock and Scorsese.

a-hijackingAndrew aka Fisti reviewed what sounds like a gripping Danish thriller A Hijacking which shares some similarities to the Oscar-nominated Captain Phillips.

Keith lamented on questionable castings in his latest KM Commentary series

Josh loves Oscars and he loves lists. Check out his multi-part lists of Top 10 Oscar Wins of Each Decade. Love this kind of trivia!

Speaking of Oscars, check out Dan’s Top 10 list of Best Supporting Actors who were Completely Snubbed by the Academy Awards.

Last but not least… if there are voracious readers amongst you, do check out my friends Ashley & Anne’s Lovely Literature Blog. They recently listed their Top 10 Young Adults Novels.

Now, before you’re off, here are a couple of fun videos & posts I found from the past week:

Check out the latest Honest Trailer … starring the wickedly talented Adele Dazeem! 😀

And this has got to be one of the most awesome guests on SNL. Liam Neeson, aka Mr. Set of Special Skills himself delivered a stern message for Putin along with Obama:

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1fn5uq_cold-open-liam-neeson-obama-snl-3-8-14_fun


Stay tuned for my review of The Grand Budapest Hotel tomorrow!


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Breaking Emotions Blogathon: Smiles & Thrills

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Last week I took part in Mettel Ray‘s BREAKING EMOTIONS blogathon on Tears and Surprise. Check out my entry if you haven’t already. It was a lot of fun to do so naturally I’m game to do another one. Now the emotions for this week are …

SMILES and THRILLS

Continuing with the theme of two opposites, this week’s first emotion is SMILES – now, I had put down laughing at first but again, I’m a bit of a weirdo and I ended up liking the word smiles a bit more. But the idea is still the same, I’m looking for scenes that have made you laugh and smile in the most happiest way possible. May it be the two lovers finally coming together, may it be a dog or a cat being all cute – everything positive and joyful will be suitable for this emotion.

Second one is a bit more dangerous and it’s that THRILL one gets watching a movie, it’s that inner excitement (again a word I wanted to use but it was too long) that will get you on the edge of the seat. Maybe it’s an explosion or a car chase or just the villain entering the building, what scene gets your blood going with adrenaline while sitting in the theater or at home. The dictionary I have says that thrilling itself means shaking, so, what makes you shake in awesomeness with a word “wow” running through your mind.

Check out Mettel Ray’s post on Breaking Emotions: Smiles & Thrills


It should be obvious for posts like these, but just in case, if you haven’t seen any of these, BEWARE OF SPOILERS!

Ok, so here are my picks:

SMILES

Casino Royale Bond and Vesper’s banter in the train

I absolutely adore this scene! It’s one of my favorites even amongst the dozens of Bond movies I’ve watched over the years because for once Bond is genuinely dazzled and stirred by a woman’s intellect as well as her beauty. Vesper barely revels any skin in this scene, but yet she oozes sex appeal. Vesper ‘overcompensates by wearing slightly masculine clothing’ as Bond puts it, and later the table is turned as Vesper nonchalantly makes a sarcastic remark about Bond’s ‘perfectly formed ass.’ It’s a stimulating banter that Daniel Craig and Eva Green performed with aplomb. Such a fantastic scene that never fails to bring a smile to my face every time I watch it.

How to Train Your Dragon –  a touch of friendship

I always love stories of unlikely friendships and there is nothing more unlikely than a little boy and a dragon. Toothless is unbelievably adorable that I wish I could have one as my own pet! The scenes where Hiccup slowly gets to know the Night Fury dragon are the best, especially the drawing scene … Toothless is trying to draw Hiccup using the tip of a tree branch and as Hiccup walks closer to him, Toothless makes a gesture ‘don’t step on the line!’ The moment Toothless lets Hiccup’s hand touches his face is so sweet and deeply moving, it’s as if Toothless gestures to him ‘I trust you now.’ John Powell’s score makes the whole scene even more awesome!

..

The New World – Pocahontas & John Rolfe

The last 20 or so minute of this 2.5-hour film with John Rolfe and Pocahontas brings such joy to me as I LOVE the tentative relationship between the two. It’s such a contrast to the more passionate yet tumultuous relationship between her and Captain Smith. After Pocahontas married Rolfe and goes to England, the supposedly-missing Smith was able to track her down. Rolfe lets his wife goes and meets him, though in one scene Rolfe is shown to be in torment, perhaps fearing the worst that his wife would leave him now that Smith is back.

TheNewWorld_SmithIsBack

The way Terrence Malick sets up this scene is just brilliant in its minimalism. There’s barely any words spoken but the body language speaks volumes. The moment Pocahontas (Q’orianka Kilcher) catches up to Rolfe as she walks back into the house, she just hugs his left arm from behind, clutching it so tight as if to say I’m here… with you… and nothing would keep us apart. Rolfe’s subtle reaction when she does this is priceless… he pauses as if he couldn’t believe his luck. It wasn’t a celebratory reaction where he suddenly takes her in his arms and kiss her or anything like that but it’s apparent that he’s ecstatic…  It’s apparent how much Rolfe loves his wife, and the fact that she now has chosen him after all must’ve brought such indescribable euphoria. Though it’s a small role, I consider this one of my all time favorite Christian Bale performance… I wish he’d do more romantic roles like this one!

TheNewWorld_Rolfe_Pocahontas_England



THRILLS

Now for this emotion, I decided to forgo any kind of ‘chase’ scene, be it car, boat, planes, horse, what have you. I might actually made a separate list specifically on thrilling chase scenes at some point 😉

Inglourious Basterds – Opening interrogation scene

You don’t always need an action scene to create a thrilling sequence. This opening scene is basically just two people sitting on a table talking… but the way this interrogation scene is set up is so darn intense that my nerves was stretched to its snapping point. Col. Hans Landa is a rather soft-spoken Nazi officer but his polite mannerism actually makes it the scene all the more suspenseful! It’s the quintessential ‘edge of your seat’ scene that had me gripping the arm rest and my poor husband’s arm. The bar scene in this movie qualifies as well, but I chose this one as I like the sheer simplicity, but yet so meticulously-crafted to maximize its impact.

Jurassic Park – We’re back in business!

There are SO many thrilling scenes in this film that it’s really tough to choose from. I was going to put the Raptor in the Kitchen scene as that one was unbelievably gripping, but I like that this one was going back and forth between the Laura Dern’s character Ellie trying to get the electricity back on and her husband Alan (Sam Neill) with the two kids as they’re climbing the temporarily-off electric fence!! I couldn’t sit still watching this scene, and when you think things are under control — ‘We’re back in business!’ — your worst nightmare just jumps right at you! Spielberg is relentless in piling up thrill after thrill here that still holds up even 20 years later.

Mission Impossible 4 – Burj Khalifa scene

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Even though I know full well Tom Cruise is not going to plunge into his death, this scene still makes my palms sweaty! Far more gripping than any car/chopper/train/boat chases Agent Ethan Hunt’s ever been involved in the previous three movies. Now THIS is worthy to be called Mission Impossible and Cruise is such a daredevil actor himself that he actually did his own stunts! It never fails to give the ultimate adrenaline rush every single time I watch it, makes me wish Brad Bird is back doing MI-5 again!


What do you think of my picks? Which scenes would YOU pick for smiles and/or thrills?

Breaking Emotions Blogathon: Tears & Surprise

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When I first read about this blogathon, it was Sati’s post on Breaking Emotions: Fear I knew I had to take part! Thanks Mettel Ray for spearheading this awesome blogathon!

Here’s the BLOGATHON idea and rules:

Well, the idea of the Breaking Emotions blogathon is actually really simple: breaking down the most memorable scenes in movies that create the emotion(s) given to you during that particular week into a list of 3 or 5. Meaning, each week I will post two emotions (there are 8 all together) and all the participants can choose if they want to do both (3 scenes each) or just one (5 scenes).

The lists can be just words, images, videos, all of the above or simply the movie title and the description of that specific scene – it is all up to each participant themselves to decide. I just simply want to know what are the movie scenes that create these emotions and if there are any universal moments in movies that everybody seems to relate to emotionally.

Now here’s this week’s emotions and what Mettel Ray’s idea about them:

TEARS and SURPRISE

Now I know TEARS isn’t exactly an emotion but I just like the sound of “breaking tears” over “breaking sadness” and since I’m pretty sure tears are the most emotional thing a person can have, you guys won’t mind. Last time there were some questions regarding the emotions so I’ll try to explain the best as I can this time around – tears = sad. Yes, there are happy tears but I’m not looking for positive scenes, I’m looking for those soul cracking, heart breaking, Simba’s father dying kind of teary scenes.

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To balance the sadness, let’s try to break SURPRISE as well – that’s an emotion I rarely have myself because I feel so many movies are becoming predictable but there are some special scenes out there I’m sure. So basically, I’m looking for a plot twist scene that surprised you, or a character’s decision that surprised you, or finding out that somebody is actually somebody’s child kind of surprise – dig deep and find those scenes that surprised you in a jaw dropping way.

Check out Mettel Ray’s post on Breaking Emotions: Tears & Surprise


It should be obvious for posts like these, but just in case, if you haven’t seen any of these, BEWARE OF SPOILERS!

Ok, so here are my picks:

TEARS

Toy Story 2When She Loved Me

Jesse pours her heart out to Woody about how she was cast aside by her owner Emily when she became a teenager. The scenes of Jesse being found under her bed after being there for years, only to be put into a charity donation box is just heartbreaking! Every time I heard that Randy Newman’s song When She Loved Me song, I can’t ever NOT cry! The sheer devastation of being abandoned just tears me to pieces. Yes I know she’s just a toy, but that’s the beauty of Pixar in creating something that’s SO relatable. Surely we’ve felt discarded at some point or another.

Indecent Proposal finale

A married woman – with her husband’s consent – agrees to a proposal from a billionaire to sleep with her for a million dollars. They see this is as a way out of their financial dilemma, but it threatens to destroy their relationship.


This is actually not a sad scene per se, I think poignant is a more apt word. I included it here as what this couple’s gone through is quite heartbreaking. As someone who’ve been married for a decade, I realize just how crucial it is trust is in a relationship, and an emotional wound is a lot tougher to mend than a physical one, and the two are so interconnected. As I watched this, I was so saddened and moved by the fragility of the human heart. I feared that in they might never be able to survive their own gut-wrenching decision. They risked all that they’ve built together for money… This scene always made me bawl my eyes out thinking what it could’ve been, so much emotion are going through me and John Barry’s beautiful music just adds so much more to this poignant scene.

AtonementThe revelation about what really happened to Robbie and Cecilia

Earlier in the film we saw that the lives of Robbie n Cecilia are irrevocably changed when Cecilia’s sister Briony told a lie out of jealousy. In the last scene when Briony Tallis finally revealed during an interview about her new book, she finally revealed the tragic fate of both Robbie n Cecilia, one died of septicimia n the other in a bomb blast afew months later. So the happy reunion never happened, it was merely Briony’s way to somehow give Cecilia and Robbie their chance to be together in her book, if not in real life.

Atonement_Tears

I was sobbing uncontrollably during this scene. I’ve seen tales of lost love before but there’s something so heart-wrenching abt this story that pierces my heart. Robbie’s cold, pale face as he’s dying from his infected wound lingers haunts me long affer fhe film ends but it’s also the crushing reality that Briony has had to live with that burden of not being able to really atone for her sins.

SURPRISE

The Sixth Sense ending

It’s rare these days to be thoroughly n absolutely surprised by a movie’s plot, esp with the social media running rampant. When I saw this film in the theater I was totally floored when I finally realized who Bruce Willis’ character was all along. I haven’t rewatched it since but I often thought about all the clues I missed along the way (especially the dinner scene with his wife). Such a startling revelation that I still vividly remember to this day as it was such a strong emotional response. I wish Willis would do more understated roles like this one.

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Deep Blue Sea – Samuel L. Jackson’s demise

I wanted to include a scene that surprises me but in a rather comical way. Well this one fits the bill. Ok it’s not a great movie or anything but worth a watch if you like shark thrillers (who hasn’t?.) This one is truly a huge WTF moment that happened as Sam Jackson’s character is giving a speech to his team about survival, but before he could finish the sentence about sealing off the pool, the giant fish just grabbed him n ate him alive! It was like WHOA!!! Ok so it’s not exactly funny to see someone get eaten alive by a big fish, but I just can’t help laughing hysterically at the irony of it all.

L.A. Confidential – Rollo Tamasi scene

Captain Dudley Smith: Don’t start tryin’ to do the right thing, boy-o. You haven’t the practice.


The complex roller coaster ride of this noir is delightfully dizzying. I remember that my head was spinning trying to process it all but the dialog, acting, cinematography was SO good I was mesmerized. This one scene features a great dialog between James Cromwell (Capt. Dudley Smith) and Kevin Spacey (Jack Vincennes), but what happens next totally came out of left field that it made me jump out of my seat. It was what you call a breathtaking moment, well for Spacey’s character, it’s a literal one.


What do you think of my picks? Which scenes would YOU pick for each emotion?

Motifs in Cinema Project: Love (and/or Marriage)

I was recently asked by Andrew Kendall at Encore Entertainment to contribute a post for the Motifs in Cinema blogging project. 2012, a multi-site themed blogging projects of 11 writers looking at 11 motifs from films last year. When Andrew emailed me the topics for the Motifs in Cinema Project, for some reason I gravitated towards the Love and/or Marriage theme. Perhaps because it so happens that 2013 falls on my 10-year wedding anniversary. So for this purpose, I’m going to focus more specifically on marriage on films and how filmmakers have used that theme in 2012.

This is the intro for the project:

Motifs in Cinema is a discourse across 22 film blogs, assessing the way in which various thematic elements have been used in the 2012 cinematic landscape. How does a common theme vary in use from a comedy to a drama? Are filmmakers working from a similar canvas when they assess the issue of death or the dynamics of revenge? Like most things, a film begins with an idea – Motifs in Cinema assesses how the use of a common theme across various films changes when utilised by different artists.

Love (and/or Marriage) in Cinema

By the time this project rolls around, I still have not seen two major Oscar contenders Amour and Anna Karenina in which the theme of love and marriage runs deep. But these eight films happen to explore marriage in varying degree, and each offers us something different when it comes to love and marriage.

[Naturally with this kind of post, I’ll be talking about some major plot points, so consider this a SPOILER ALERT!]

A Late Quartet

One of my favorite films of 2012 that’s probably get lost in the shuffle. Two members of the renowned quartet Fugue are married couple Robert and Juliette (played brilliantly by Philip Seymour Hoffman and Katherine Keener). Even though they work together, their marriage is on the brink of doom, seemingly held together by their love for their only daughter, who later on ends up wrecking havoc in the already fragile musical group.

ALateQuartet_KeenerHoffman

Jealousy, lust and disillusionment threatened to break their marriage forever and I thought it’d be the case when Robert gave in to the seduction of his beautiful jogging partner. Neither Robert nor Juliette seems invested in their marriage as much as they are in their music, and therein lies the problem. Having been married for nearly a decade now, I realize how crucial it is to never take our spouse for granted, and this film is a reminder of that.

Brave

Just because it’s an animated film, it doesn’t mean that it can’t have a poignant message. As Pixar has done a few years ago with UP, that opening montage alone speaks volumes as one of the best portrayal of marriage on film. Unlike other less-fortunate Disney princesses, Merida grew up in a loving home with her dad Lord Fergus and Queen Eleanor. The queen is the one who ‘wears the pants’ in the family, so to speak, though it seems unrealistic perhaps in the Medieval era, so it’s perhaps more wishful thinking than anything. That said, it’s wonderful to see such a healthy relationship between the two, the scene where Eleanor vents to Fergus about Merida is both hilarious and moving.

Brave_Fergus_Eleanor

The film also challenges the notion of young and arranged marriage, with Merida protesting the whole betrothal process and refusing to give up her freedom. Marriage should always be a choice, first and foremost, and that ‘happily ever after’ might not always happen. It also shouldn’t be a ‘goal’ so much as a natural procession of life when things fall into place.

Hitchcock

I wasn’t wowed by this film overall but I did appreciate that I got a glimpse of the marriage life of one of the world’s most famous film directors. The saying of ‘Behind every great man there’s a great woman’ couldn’t be more true when it comes to Alfred Hitchcock (Anthony Hopkins), as not only Alma Reville (Helen Mirren) was supportive and willing to put up with his antics, including his juvenile crush with his leading ladies, she was crucial in his career, too.

Hitchcock_Alma

Alma wasn’t exactly a saint, either. Lacking the attention from her husband, Alma was drawn to screenwriter Whitfield Cook who’s flirtatious with her and plays upon her own writing career aspiration. No marriage is perfect surely, but what I do like about Alfred and Alma is that they are friends as well as lovers, they can relate to each other beyond just the romantic stuff. They seemed to enjoy each other’s company and have that shared creative passion. I think that’s partly why their marriage could last as long as it did despite a few bumps on the road. Dame Mirren is the star of the show for me, and I think I learn much more about Alma here than I did about her husband.
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Moonrise Kingdom

One of the most delightfully quirky films of 2012 center on two 12-year-olds running away from home to be together. They claim they are in love with each other and we think, ‘they don’t even know what love is!’ Be that as it may, does it make their feelings ‘less true?’

Neither Sam and Suzi come from a healthy family.  Suzi’s parents are on the brink of divorce as her mom is in love with the local Captain. Sam has been living in a ‘juvenile refuge’ as his foster parents no longer wants him living with them. But love is a universal desire even for those perhaps too young to understand, and the film offers an endearingly-naive look at marriage from fresh young eyes who aren’t yet cynical nor jaded by that concept.

Nobody Walks

I didn’t really care for this film, in fact, I listed it as one of the worst films I saw in 2012. The thing is, I’m not fond of films about infidelity, though at times there’s a teachable moment that I can appreciate. In this case, it comes from the supporting character Julie (played by the massively underrated Rosemarie DeWitt). Whilst her husband was hopelessly infatuated by a young, pretty house guest like a 12-year-old boy, temptation also came her way like a storm. She’s a therapist and the seducer is her patient who happens to be a handsome and successful actor. She could’ve given in and chalk it up to her husband being a douche bag and the fact that she had been a neglected wife, but in the end she did the right thing.

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This film paints a rather bleak portrait of marriage… where things seems quiet and peaceful for this well-to-do family but yet, even the slightest breeze threatens to blow everything apart as if it had no solid foundation at all. For the time being, their union seemingly survives the whole ordeal, but it made me think… for how much longer?? What would ensure them that it would not happen again?? The main character Martine (an attractive but impossible-to-root-for Olivia Thirlby) is even more tragic, not only did she has no complete regard for people’s relationships, she doesn’t seem to value herself nor her own feelings, either.

People Like Us

Despite its incredibly generic title, this movie ends up being a pretty good one. It doesn’t depict marriage between two characters in the film, instead it explores the consequences of a marital misstep, through the eyes of those who end up suffering from it. Sam and Frankie met as a result of their father’s infidelity – Sam is record producer Jerry Harper’s firstborn, and Frankie is the daughter of his mistress. Sam’s last wish before he died is to give a large sum of money to Frankie’s young son, which creates interesting circumstances for all three and their lives are never the same because of it.

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In my book, infidelity is NEVER a good thing. But sometimes good can come from something bad and in this case, it’s honesty and kindness ends up righting the wrong, even if the way to get there isn’t always smooth.

Robot & Frank

Now this one paints a very different view of marriage. In fact, it never quite enter the picture until the film almost ended. It’s marketed as an unlikely friendship between a robot butler and his master, Frank (Frank Langella), and indeed it is. But there’s also a relationship between a beautiful librarian Jennifer (Susan Sarandon) whom he constantly flirts with. Set in a distant future where physical books are being replaced by digital copies, Frank is struggling to come to terms with the ever-changing world around him.

RobotFrank_SarandonLangella

It’s a film about Alzheimer that doesn’t hit us over the head with the harrowing subject matter, but instead it gives us a sweet – and at times hilarious – picture of family. In the end, it’s revealed that Jennifer is actually Frank’s wife, which I didn’t see coming. That revelation made me tear up as it’s just heartbreaking but also made your heart soar at the same time. Real love knows no bounds, the heart always remembers even when the mind lost its capacity to do so… and that is one of the most beautiful and uplifting picture of marriage I’ve seen in a long while.

Silver Linings Playbook

Marriage is the union of two people, but sometimes the breakdown of a marriage could actually brings people together. That’s what happens with Pat and Tiffany, the former lost his marriage to infidelity (and his uncontrollable rage) and the other to a tragic accident. Each of them deals with it in their own way. Tiffany tries to hide her pain by being promiscuous and Pat holds on to the hope that he could still get back together with his estranged wife Nikki.

SilverLinings_CooperLawrence

Though they didn’t exactly get off on the right foot, their relationship slowly became the very thing that help both of them heal… and learn to love again. Pat has always wanted that love to come from his wife, but instead, it comes from an unlikely person that comes to him unexpectedly. The moment Pat felt for Tiffany, it took him by surprise and he looked away, unable to comprehend the change in his heart. It wasn’t until the finale of the dance competition that he finally chose to acknowledge his feelings and decided he needed to do something about it. Director David O. Russell kept the ending open-ended in terms of how Pat ended things with Nikki. But by then it doesn’t really matter. What matters to Pat (and us the viewers) is that he’s finally found that silver linings.


Be sure to check out other entries of Motifs in Cinema on Encore Entertainment Blog!


Thoughts on any of these films? What other 2012 films would you have chosen in regards to marriage?

Movie Jail Relay Race – 12th Round

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You’ve probably seen this Relay Race been going around in the past few months. I love this brilliant idea, courtesy of my pals Nostra and Terrence which started back in late November. Here’s the gist:

It’s time to put some movie people in jail. The object is to give a prosecutor’s argument as to why these movie people belong in “Movie Jail” whether it be for violating the integrity of the content source of one their films, or being a sell-out, just making bad movies overall, getting worse as time goes on or not being in a good movie for many years.

The baton will be passed to another blogger who will have to do the following:

In order to free someone from Movie Jail they have to do 2 things
1 – Give a defense attorney argument defending the plaintiff
2 – Pay bail: the cost of which is another case for the court and a prosecutor’s argument against the actor/director of their choice that will replace the one set free.

There must always be 10 people in Movie Jail.

Thanks to Diana from Aziza’s Picks for passing this to me last Thursday. At this point, I’m the 12th person on the relay race, here are the previous participants from the starting point:

  1. My Film Views/The Focused Filmographer
  2. Cinematic Corner
  3. And So It Begins
  4. Surrender to the Void
  5. Cinematic Paradox
  6. The Cinematic Spectacle
  7. Being Norma Jean
  8. Defiant Success
  9. …let’s be splendid about this
  10. Lime Reviews and Strawberry Confessions
  11. Aziza’s Picks

So let’s take a look at the current 10 inmates, shall we?

JenniferAnistonMovieJail
Jennifer Aniston
MichaelBaymoviejail
Michael Bay
FreidbergMovieJail
Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer
sgsdgsd
Raja Gosnell
Katherine Heigl
Katherine Heigl
Todd Phillips
Todd Phillips
Eddie Murphy
Eddie Murphy
Adam Sandler
Adam Sandler
Til Schweiger
Til Schweiger
Kristen Stewart
Kristen Stewart

Diana rescued George Lucas [glad she did, I would’ve rescued him too] and put K-Stew in. I absolutely concur with her choice and rationale. Stewart was already a prisoner right from the original relay race but got rescued [Sati, though I enjoyed reading your argument, sadly I don’t think K-Stew deserved your eloquent defense], so I’m glad she’s back in! The thing is, I’m totally stumped as to who I should defend. As Diana said before, everyone here seemed to merit their penalty. I wasn’t aware of who Jason Friedberg & Aaron Seltzer and Raja Gosnell before but that’s because fortunately, I have never seen any of their movies — except for Gosnell’s Never Been Kissed — but man, those are awful, awful movies.

After much deliberations, I’ve decided that I’d give my defense not for a complete release but to put said actor on probation. I simply can’t think of anyone here that I’d give a get-out-of-jail free card because their ‘offense’ is quite tremendous.

The actor I choose to defend is:

JenniferAnistonProbation
Jennifer Aniston

Yes I know, I’m quite shocked myself that I’d actually pick her as I’ve said it several times on this blog that she can’t act. But she’s generally pretty likable and I feel that she just need to find the right project and be more willing to venture out of her comfort zone [The Good Girl, Horrible Bosses]. For what it’s worth, at least she’s been consistent in her career, I mean, it’s not like she was an Oscar-winning actress who suddenly start making bad choices. Now, that doesn’t excuse her role choices – hence I still put her on probation – but I think she still could make good movies down the road and the right director could perhaps coax a good performance out of her.

The actor I’m putting in jail:

NicCageMovieJail
Nicolas Cage

It pains me to put Nic on here as I quite like his earlier roles. I mean, this guy won a darn Oscar for Leaving Las Vegas, and his action movies following that was great: The Rock, Face/Off, Con Air, and his dramatic roles in The Family Man and Adaptation displayed his acting chops. But then his piles of debts pretty much reduced him to a ‘yes man’ who takes every single freakin’ role without bothering to read the script. I mean, other than maybe his supporting role in Kick-Ass, he hasn’t starred in anything decent for as long as I can remember. He’s been so prolific and not in a good way, starring in one bad movie after another, with seemingly no end in sight. I thought the first Ghost Rider was absolutely horrid and he’s made a sequel of the darn thing!! You’d think he’s hit rock bottom when he starred in a Taken rip-off called Stolen [seriously Nic, that is low even for you], but I think that’s still not his worst yet. He’s attached to no less than nine movies just in 2013 alone, according to IMDb, who knows how many of those turn out to actually be remotely watchable?? I could go on but I think most moviegoers could see he’s lost his integrity as an actor. I do hope he could still turn things around though.

P.S. I was actually considering putting Gerry Butler in jail, but I think that Nic is far more guilty than him at this point. But the fact that I’m even considering GB, it goes to show how I feel about his career right now.


Ok, now I’m passing the torch to Iba @ I Luv Cinema.
Curious what she’d do with this list 😀


Well, are you surprised by my picks? Sound off in the comments below.

Presenting the Small Roles… Big Performances Blogathon!

Welcome to FlixChatter’s
SMALL ROLES…. BIG PERFORMANCES blog-a-thon!

The idea of this blog-a-thon is to…

Shine a spotlight on the ‘unsung heroes’ if you will, the overlooked performers who add so much richness & entertainment value to the film no matter how brief their appearance is, but yet they don’t get the credit they so deserve.

You can read the full blogathon guidelines here.

I apologize if I’m not being clear about the date of when the post is supposed to go live. It’s no biggie though, I’m just thrilled of the turnout of this blogathon and seeing people turn the spotlight on a lot of talented-yet-underrated actors.

FlixChatter’s contributor Becky (aka PrairieGirl)’s and frequent commenter Dave W (aka Daveackackattack) are also participating. Check out their posts below, as well as one from yours truly:

James Purefoy in A Knight’s Tale + James Marsden in Enchanted & Superman Returns Stephen Graham in This Is England + Stacy Edwards in The Company of Men
Don Cheadle in Devil in a Blue Dress

Here are the full participants in ALPHABETICAL ORDER:

Thanks so much everyone for taking part! 

P.S. I’ll still be taking submissions all week long so if you want to take part, just drop the link in the comments below and I’ll add it to the list!


Please help spread the word around via Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, etc. and if you have Twitter, please use hashtag #smallrolesbigperformances to help promote the event!

‘Small Roles… Big Performances’ Blog-a-thon!

Hello, hello!!

Summer is winding down as August comes to a close… but hey, there are still plenty of Autumn movies to look forward to! In fact, more smaller-budgeted but with more character-driven fares featuring ‘bigger’ performances are often released in the Fall/Winter months, though of course there’s always exceptions to such a rule.

Well, like I mentioned in my Movie Questionnaire post yesterday, I’ve been pondering about doing a blog-a-thon for a while. I have only done ONE blog-a-thon in my 3 years of blogging, that was the Gregory Peck birthday bash last April. Well this one it’s going to be entirely different. It’s sort of inspired by my almost 2-year-old post of seven talented actors who deserve more leading roles and also by Encore Entertainment‘s 90s Essential Performances Showdowns, but this time I’d like to shine the spotlight on performances by under-appreciated actors.

I think the title SMALL ROLES…. BIG PERFORMANCES is pretty self-explanatory but here’s what I have in mind:

  • Highlight a performance from an actor [classics or contemporary] in a supporting role or cameo, it can be as short as five-minutes, as long as that particular scene is memorable and/or makes an impression on you.
  • I’d ask that you choose a performance that was NOT nominated for major awards and as much as possible choose an actor that isn’t generally well-known, the more obscure the better!
  • You could choose to do a write-up of ONE or several (up to three to keep things from being too long) performances. It’s up to you how long you’d like it to be, I don’t want to restrict you if you are passionate about a particular scene, but I think 150 – 400 words is ideal. Write why you love that particular scene and how it’s touched you, be as specific as you’d like to be and you could even elaborate on the actor or share some trivia about the movie in relation to that performance.
  • I recommend using clips/photos/quotes as you see fit. I LOVE what Sati does with her weekly scene spotlight, but feel free to add your own spin to it 😀
  • Let me know in the comments or email me [address below] if you’d like to participate, and I will add your post link to the main blog-a-thon post here. If you don’t have a blog but would like to participate, you can email your write-up and I’ll create a post here along with submissions from FlixChatter’s contributors.
  • Deadline: I’m hoping to have the blog-a-thon post be up on Monday, October 1st so please email me your link to rtmaramis@yahoo[dot]com by Friday, September 28.

The idea of this blog-a-thon is to shine a spotlight on the ‘unsung heroes’ if you will, the overlooked performers who add so much richness/entertainment value to the film no matter how brief their appearance is, but yet they don’t get the credit they so deserve.

P.S. I haven’t had a chance to create banners for this blog-a-thon yet, I will let you know when those become available.


I hope you all would take part in this. Please help spread the word, the more the merrier!

A Conversation with one of my favorite film characters – Part of Kid In The Front Row Blogathon

About a week ago, Kid from Kid In The Front Row asked everyone to join in on his Character Dialogue Blogathon. The idea?

Have an imaginary conversation with the film character of your choice.

I took a blogging & computer break yesterday but since I promised him I’d take part, I figure it’s better late than never [right Kid? :D] Well, the hardest part is narrowing down which favorite character to interview! I mean, there are too many to choose from… but after some deliberations, I’d go with Scarlett O’Hara as I’ve always had this question in my mind every time I watched Gone with the Wind… perhaps some of you feel the same way?

So here goes …

RTM:
Hello miss Scarlett, how are you?

Scarlett [too busy counting her cash to look up to me]:
Fine, how are you?

RTM:
Oh I’m doing well, thank you. Um, business going well?

Scarlett:
[shrugs] Could be a lot better I suppose, people just ain’t spendin’ like they used to. Oh darn, now I forgot where I was at.
[She glares at me with her piercing blue eyes]
You’re distracting me, is there anythin’ you need help with?

RTM:
Oh sorry, ok I just have one naggin’ question that’s always bugging me… if you’d be so kind as to answer, I promise I’ll get out of your hair.

Scarlett:
Ok, ok, just make it quick. [She’s back to countin’ her cash]

RTM:
Well, I’m just wonderin’… you’ve got every woman’s dream man in Rhett Butler. He’s handsome, wealthy, charismatic and best of all, he loves you very, very much. So why on earth are you still in love with Ashley who’s married to your best friend?

Scarlett [Stops counting but doesn’t look up at me]:
You’ve got some nerve asking me that, you know that… and there’s no short answer to such a question.

RTM:
That’s ok, I have all night.

Scarlett:
[Scoffs] Yeah well I don’t. So all I’m gonna give you is this… I’m a complicated woman, all right? I don’t think the likes of you will understand. 

RTM:
Please, indulge me.

Scarlett:
You’re not gonna take no for an answer do you?

[Pause] People think I don’t love Rhett but I do. I love him because he understands me and we’re alike in many ways… but Ashley… well, I’ve loved him for as long as I can remember.
And just ’cause I’ve been married twice and he’s married someone else doesn’t mean I love him any less. Love like that don’t just simply go away…
[She almost lost her composure but gains it back quickly]
You know the terms ‘love defies all reasons’ don’t you?

RTM:
I’ve heard the term, yeah.

Scarlett:
Well then, I’m afraid that’s the only answer I can give you.

With that, miss Scarlett swiftly puts all the money on the table into a wooden box and left.
….


Don’t forget to check out Kid’s conversation with Alvy from Annie Hall


Now your turn. Which movie character would you like to speak with and how’d you imagine that conversation go?