Oscar History

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Entries in Colorology (74)

Apr 25 2016

The Furniture: The Lady with the Van Paints a Crime Scene Into a Home

"The Furniture"is our new design series.Here's Daniel Walber...

The Lady in the Vanbegins with a bloody hit-and-run accident.The title van-driving lady,played by Maggie Smith,collides with a young man and leaves him for dead.On the lam,bound by necessity to a vehicle that may also be a murder weapon,she finds her way to a quiet neighborhood full of artists and bourgeois intellectuals.

Then it turns into a delightful comedy about the social anxieties of Alan Bennett.

It's a bit abrupt,to be honest.And it may take a fair while to warm up to the neurotic,Adaptation.-style doppelgangers that represent the split personalities of the playwright protagonist.The vans themselves,though,quite effectively capture a much more gradual transition,one that charts Mary/Margaret's arc with care.What begins as an all-in-one murder weapon and crime scene becomes a home.[More...]

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Mar 21 2016

The Furniture: Brooklyn and Carol's Dramatically Different Department Stores

It's our new Production Design series,"The Furniture."Daniel Walber kicked things offlast week with the bedroom in The Exorcist.Now a different era and public spaces - Editor

Thanks toBrooklynandCarol,2015 was a banner year for the 1950s department store.Both Eilis and Therese spend a fair amount of time as New York City shopgirls,selling to housewives and dealing with stern floor managers.Yet,despite the ostensibly common setting,Brooklyn's Bartocci's andCarol's Frankenberg's could not be more different.

The staff areas are a good place to start.Bartocci's has a simple enough space for its employees,with open coat lockers to keep their belongings.It's not beautiful,but the wood lends it a cozy quality.Production designer François Séguin (The Red Violin) and art directors Irene O'Brien (This Must Be the Place) and Robert Parle (Riddick) have a subtle,but assured touch.[More...]

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Mar 05 2016

Is "Gods of Egypt"a Bad Movie People Will Eventually Love?

The cast sees the reviews!The Horror.The Horror.The ill begotten would be blockbusterGods of Egypt,directed by Alex Proyas (I Robot,The Crow), is currently enjoying a13% ratingon Rotten Tomatoes;you could call that score bad luck but for the fact that the movie fully earns it.

Still...There's something enjoyable about tallying up the ways it goes wrong.It continually charges toward its own spectacular idiocy with gusto.Despite heaps of exposition it never makes a lick of sense,explaining rules only to break them.It mounts each action sequence with zero artistry in disguising its shameful lust to earn extra $ as a video game (you half expect congratulatory text and bonus points on screen a laScott Pilgrim vs The World).It builds its own crazy as high as its in-movie Tower of Babel.It wants to play with surreal Egyptian imagery but is so 2016 that it mistakes human gods with animal heads for organic derivatives of Michael Bay'sTransformers.

Each actor,freed from mundane concerns of "direction"or even other actors (green screens abound so half the time it's clear they're nottogether),does his/her own thing.The result is a hilarious hodgepodge of styles,accents,and wildly varying degrees of success at self-amusement: Egyptians with Australian accents?why not,Gerard Butler!;You once sawPirates of the Caribbeanand want to do something affected but can't quite commit to your mincing gay idea?Then do it half ass,Chadwick Boseman;You only want to entertain yourself?Thank you thank you Geoffrey Rush & Nikolaj Coster-Waldau.You are both having so much fun which is theonlyway to do a bad movie.

Maybe it's the time of year,the garbage dump monthbetween serious adult films vying formetaphoric gold(it's just gold plating) and studio four-quadrant product vying for audience gold (the green stuff) but I found its monotonous/cheap aesthetic weirdly endearing;the sets and costumes are gold,the lighting is golden,some of the superpowers are fiery gold,and these Gods even bleed gold!This is not a recommendation so much as a "if you're in the mood for it"which I,surprisingly,was.It's a blockbuster dumb as Brenton Thwaites is twink pretty,but it just can't help itself.

Oscar Chances: Teehee.not even if 2016 ended today with only 40ish movies to choose from.

Feb 25 2016

Thoughts I Had...First Pics of Oscar Set

Thoughts I had looking at the first pics of the Oscar set for Sunday night in the order they came to me after the jump...

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Feb 12 2016

Interview: Sandy Powell on Color,Character,Carol,Cinderella,and Cate

Sandy Powell on the set of CinderellaSome people rush to movies if their favorite movie star's face is prominent on the poster.Others swear allegiance to directors.Obsessive cinephiles go for all sorts of reasons.One of ours at The Film Experience is Sandy Powell.亚博主页If she's the costume designer,we're there,no questions asked.We sat throughThe Tempest(2010) just for her and trust me that that's devotion.

Meeting her in person earlier this season to talkCarolandCinderella,which brought her her 11th and 12th Oscar nominations andcould well bring her a 4th Oscar,was a personal joy.I had talked to her once before by phone but in person we were able to look at costume stills together and had a great conversation.This cinematic MVP was a fun,lively,and personable interviewee.I hope you enjoy the interview as much as I did.

NATHANIEL R:  I intervewed you once a long time ago and I was really taken aback by something you said.You implied that you were surprised and amused by analytical readings of your work.

SANDY POWELL: I was talking about that today withJudy Beckerand she said thing "I've learned so much about my work today!".People read things into it that you weren't consciously thinking about.But they're not bad things!You start thinking "maybe subliminally..."You start taking credit for it!

A lot of the time you work so fast that you make snap decisions and you don't know what it's based on.I do work instinctively and intuitively.I don't sit and analyze.I don't think about the significance and "What shall I consciously put on her or him or her to convey that?"I do what feels right.And quite often just by doing that you've got it right,you actually have given something so symbolism.

NATHANIEL R: Do you start thinking of full outfits while you're reading a script?

her answer and much more after the jump...

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