Five for the Fifth: MAY 2015 Edition

FiveForFifth2015_Spring

Welcome to FlixChatter’s primary blog series! As is customary for this monthly feature, I get to post five random news item/observation/poster, etc. and then turn it over to you to share your take on that given topic. You can see the previous five-for-the-fifth posts here.

1. Since tonight I will be attending a Christopher Nolan‘s Conversation with Scott Foundas, chief film critic for Variety, I thought I’d dedicate my first question in Nolan’s honor.

WalkerArt_NolanLecture

Nolan is actually the first filmmaker whose complete works I have seen, though not in order as I’ve just caught up with his first film The Following (1998) a few years ago. I made a birthday tribute to him in 2012 by ranking his movies. Even though I wasn’t wowed by Interstellar, a so-so Chris Nolan film is still a darn good one. Foundas posted an article on Walker Art website on Nolan, calling him A Practical Magician of Modern Movies, which I think is an apt description.

So if you can ask one question to Nolan, what would it be? 

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2. I always like to include some kind of FIRST LOOK in FFTF, and this one just arrived yesterday courtesy of EW. It’s Martin Scorsese‘s upcoming drama SILENCE starring Andrew Garfield. It also stars Liam Neeson and Adam Driver due out in 2016.

AndrewGarfield_Silence

Based on Shusako Endo’s 1966 novel, ‘Silence’ tells the story of a Portuguese Jesuit missionary who is persecuted along with other Christians in 17th-century Japan. Garfield portrays Father Rodrigues, pictured in an exclusive image with Shinya Tsukamoto, who plays a villager named Mokichi.

Per EW, Scorsese told reporters in a press conference in Taiwan that he’d been trying to find a way to adapt this novel since he first read it more than 25 years ago, and that its themes resonated with him deeply. “The subject matter presented by Shusaku Endo was in my life since I was very, very young, … I was very much involved in religion, I was raised in a strong Catholic family. … Further reflection is how [we] want to lead our life in the Christian faith … so ultimately this book drew my attention when it was given to me in 1988.”

The spiritual element certainly piqued my interest. Sounds  like a meaty role for Garfield and I’m happy for him. I saw him in this British indie Boy A prior to his stint as Spiderman and he’s certainly a capable actor.

What’s your initial thoughts of Silence?

3. Now, since today is Cinco De Mayo, I usually highlight Mexican filmmakers and/or actors but this time around why not talk about Mexican cinema in general. I actually haven’t seen any film about the Battle of Puebla, which is what the Fifth of May commemorates. There’s one called Cinco de May: La Batalla that’s just released in 2013. This still below is from that film, has anyone seen it?

CincoDeMayoMovieLately Mexican filmmakers have dominated the award seasons, culminating with two Mexican directors and winning Best Picture Oscars back to back (Alfonso Cuarón for Gravity and Alejandro González Iñárritu for Birdman). But there are many others that have made a name in Hollywood and not just limited to directors, Emmanuel Lubezki is no doubt the hottest cinematographer working today.

So in celebration of Mexican cinema, what’s your favorite Mexican film?

4. I’ve been watching a ton of foreign films lately, thanks to MSPIFF AND my new crush Stanley Weber who’s so far have been mostly in French films (Violette, Thérèse Desqueyroux).

One of my top 3 picks from MSPIFF is definitely Girlhood (Bande de Files), a French coming-of-age drama that really spoke to me and featured one of my favorite scenes ever. I LOVE Karidja Touré‘s performance in that film, and it made me think how I wish more people would discover her. She’s still only 21 years old and based on this article, she is bilingual which helps… “Better practise my English so I can be a star in the States.” I’d love to see her get noticed the way Lupita Nyong’O practically took Hollywood by storm.

KaridjaToure_GirlhoodAs for Stanley Weber, well he’s been my obsession in the past month or so. I’m not gonna lie, of course I was initially transfixed by his ridiculous good looks. He’s like a taller, sexier, more virile version of Chris Pine, with a hint of Richard Madden. But looks alone won’t get me all worked up about. Actors I love have to have the chops AND screen presence and Stanley’s got both in spades.

Stanley putting on the charm on Audrey Tautou in Thérèse Desqueyroux
Stanley putting on the charm on Audrey Tautou in Thérèse Desqueyroux

Classically trained at Cours Florent, French National Academy of Dramatic Arts and the London counterpart LAMDA, his background is theater but he’s done quite a few TV and film works in the past decade. Even in smaller supporting roles alongside big names of French cinema, Isabelle Adjani, Emmanuelle Devos, Audrey Tautou, etc. he more than held his own. He’s only 28 but seems much older than he looks, I kind of think of him like an old soul. As with ANY successful actor, versatility is key and I’ve seen him display his comedic chops in a British rom-com (Not Another Happy Ending) as well as portray a devilishly charming psychopath (BORGIA: Faith & Fear) convincingly. So yeah, I’m dying for him to get more leading roles, and soon!!

Which foreign actor/actress you noticed lately that you wish would get their big break in Hollywood?

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5. This month’s Five for the Fifth’s guest is Tom from Digital Shortbread!

DigitalShortbread
Seeing that Avengers: Age of Ultron has just rolled on through, I thought it’d be interesting to gauge what people think of highly anticipated movie events.

Is hype generally a good thing or generally a bad thing, in your view, when it comes to movies?


Well, that’s it for the May 2015 edition of Five for the Fifth, folks. Now, please pick a question out of the five above or better yet, do ‘em all! 😀

Five for the Fifth: May 2012 Edition

Hello folks, welcome to the May 2012 edition of Five of the Fifth!

As is customary for this monthly feature, I get to post five random news item/observation/poster, etc. and then turn it over to you to share your take on that given topic. You can see the previous five-for-the-fifth posts here. So let’s get started, shall we?

1.  Happy Cinco de Mayo! Last year I chose to highlight a Mexican actor to celebrate Mexican heritage and pride , but this year why not talk about directors? There are quite a number of Mexican directors working in Hollywood today, and few are highly successful, i.e. Guillermo del Toro, Alejandro González Iñárritu, Alfonso Cuarón, and the celebrated Luis Buñuel.

Out of the list, I’m most familiar with Cuarón’s work (Great Expectations, a segment of Paris, je t’aime, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and one of my favorite dystopian sci-fi thriller Children of Men. I saw it on the big screen when it came out in 2006 and was quite affected by it. I think it’s one of Clive Owen’s best performances to date, IMO.

So my first question has two-parts: Who’s your favorite Mexican director and your favorite film from said director?


2. Ok, since I just blogged about being hooked on Spooks, I had been reading a lot about the show and apparently a US remake is in the works [surprise, surprise]. According to Dark Horizon, ABC has acquired the American adaptation rights of the BAFTA-winning show, though no word yet whether it will remain set in the U.K. or shift its location and agency setting to the United States.

Heh, naturally I’m skeptical about such projects, most likely it just won’t be as good as the original. I read this soon after I heard news that The Help director Tate Taylor wants to make a movie version of 2002 BBC miniseries The Jury (starring a young Gerry Butler in one of my top five roles). It’s such a fantastic miniseries that explored how each juror’s life is affected by the case, not sure how that’d translate into a 2-hour feature film.

Now, I do welcome the idea of a Spooks movie however, after all there are dozens of TV series that have been made into films, I mean look at Serenity, Charlie’s Angels and of course the highly successful Mission: Impossible. I certainly wouldn’t mind seeing Spooks being made into a film franchise and with the right people that could be an awesome one.

Richard Armitage who played Lucas North is very keen on the idea, in this interview he said, “Every time I see the producers I’m saying, ‘Come on, Olympics 2012. Come on, do it. Make a film’ I think it would be fantastic. And it would be great to see — I mean one of the things Spooks has done brilliantly is put London visually on the screen and shoot London beautifully…” Hear, hear, Richard! Of course they should make it with Richard in the lead 😉

So those who’ve watched Spooks, what do you think of the idea? If you haven’t seen it, what’s your favorite TV series-turned-film?
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3. Ok, I wasn’t going to feature this trailer anywhere on my blog as I thought the first movie is such an abominable! If you’ve read my short review of it, you’ll know why. But I think the second movie promises even more ridiculously bombastic and preposterous high-octane action in massive proportion!

Not only do we have the original 80s action heroes like Sly, Ah-nuld, Bruce Willis, and Dolph Lundgren, we’ve also got Jason Statham and Jet Li returning, along with even MORE action heroes in the form of Jean-Claude Van Damme AND Chuck Norris!!  I have to admit I laughed out loud watching the trailer, and everyone practically cheered when good ‘ol Chuck strutting into the screen taking off his sunglasses, ahah. Hey like the trailer said… When the threat is this great… only a cast this verbose could do it!!


So is Expendables 2 on your must-see list this Summer?
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4. Ok, since I just saw The Avengers last night, I have to have one Avengers-related question. I read on Friday on Deadline that apparently Samuel L. Jackson was furious that A.O. Scott gave The Avengers a negative review. Here’s what he tweeted:

This is what the NY Times reviewer wrote: “…while ‘The Avengers’ is hardly worth raging about, its failures are significant and dispiriting. The light, amusing bits cannot overcome the grinding, hectic emptiness, the bloated cynicism that is less a shortcoming of this particular film than a feature of the genre.”  

Now I disagree w/ Scott as I thought The Avengers was fun and definitely entertaining, but really is it really necessary for Jackson to be so bitter about just one bad review, especially when overall the critical reception has been positive? Proof that these superheroes certainly have super ego, ahah.

What do you think of Sam Jackson’s reaction? And if you have seen The Avengers, what did you think of his role as Nick Fury?


5. Ok last question. Today is Henry Cavill‘s 29th Birthday. As you already know, I’m highly anticipating Man of Steel with him in the role.

Apart from some behind-the-scene footage of him and this photo, we haven’t seen ANY teaser trailer yet. I’m hoping that maybe we’ll see at least a teaser with The Dark Knight Rises? Now, you’ve probably read that this Zack Snyder adaptation might focus a bit more on Clark Kent as ‘young twenty-something journalist who feels alienated by powers beyond anyone’s imagination’ [per ComicBookMovie]

There have been some on-set pics that show Cavill as Kent without his trademark glasses. Now, we should expect that under Christopher Nolan/Zack Snyder collaboration, we may see a Superman reboot unlike anything we’ve seen before. I mean look at what Nolan did with the Batman franchise, he’s not afraid to give the classic hero a whole new level of realism and darker tone with the story. So does that mean perhaps that would include Clark Kent having a different set of disguise in Man of Steel?

What say you, folks? Where are you in the ‘glasses or no glasses for Clark Kent’ debate?



Well, that’s it for the May edition of Five for the Fifth, folks. Now, please pick a question out of the five above or better yet, do ‘em all!