Tag Archives: Geoffrey Rush

And the Oscar doesn’t go to…..

The Artist is a film that I enjoyed but I didn’t really understand all the awards attention it garnered including the Best Picture Oscar.

I thought I would look back at some other films (from the 70’s till today) that won the top award, and in my opinion did not deserve the honour.


ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST (it was the year of Nashville – need I say more?)


ROCKY (same year as Taxi Driver)


ORDINARY PEOPLE (same year as Raging Bull)


GANDHI (Tootsie was a gem that year)


DANCES WITH WOLVES  (Marty loses again with Goodfellas)


FORREST GUMP (bests Pulp Fiction)


THE ENGLISH PATIENT (how can one ever forget Fargo)


A BEAUTIFUL MIND (the year of Gosford Park)


CRASH (crashed the party for Brokeback Mountain)


THE KING’S SPEECH (when is Fincher’s turn? – the year of The Social Network)


Filed under Awards, movies

Judy bops with Woody!

While we await  the Australian release of Woody Allen’s new hit movie Midnight In Paris” comes news of his latest production. Still enjoying his sojourns in stunning European cities he is setting this one in Rome, Italy. (after London, Barcelona & Paris) The film has the title “The Bop Decameron”

The cast has been set and I am glad to see that one of my favorite actresses the wonderful Judy Davis has been added to the list. Alec Baldwin (30 Rock), Roberto Benigni (Life Is Beautiful), Penelope Cruz (Vicki Christina Barcelona), Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network), Greta Gerwig (Greenberg), Ellen Page (Juno) and Alison Pill (Milk) are co-stars. Woody Allen himself is also appearing in the film as Judy’s husband they play  the parents of Eisenberg.

Loosely inspired by The Decameron, Giovanni Boccaccio’s collection of bawdy stories, the film is divided into four separate vignettes. One of them, featuring Allen, focuses on an American couple travelling to Italy to meet the family of their daughter’s fiance.

It will be a welcome return for Miss Davis who has shone in 4 previous Woody films. She was pipped at the post for a supporting actress Oscar for her wonderful turn as the neurotic divorcee  in “Husbands & Wives” (Marisa Tomei won for “My Cousin Vinnie”- a travesty in my opinion) she also had roles in “Alice”, “Deconstructing Harry” and “Celebrity” – I will never  forget the hilarious scene where she is given fellatio instructions on a banana by a hooker played by Bebe Neuwirth, truly outrageous and hysterical!!!.

Judy Davis & Woody Allen in “Husbands And Wives”

Judy will be seen next in the eagerly awaited new Fred Schepisi film “The Eye Of The Storm” based on the novel by Patrick White. She plays Princess Dorothy de Lascabanes and it is a role that fits her like a glove. I previously made the  prediction of a possible Oscar nomination, and hopefully if the film is positioned right and gets noticed she will be justly rewarded.

You can check out the  trailer for the film on the newly launched “The Eye Of The Storm” website.

Judy Davis, Charlotte Rampling & Geoffrey Rush star in “The Eye Of The Storm”

Footnote: For some strange reason Woody Allen’s film before “Midnight In Paris”“You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger” was never released in Australia despite a cast including Naomi Watts, Josh Brolin, Antonio Banderas, Anthony Hopkins, Pauline Collins, & Gemma Jones. It was a box-office failure in the US, perhaps that is the reasoning – go figure!!


Filed under Casting news, movies, travel

a film that speaks and one that doesn’t

Saw 2 films this weekend. One excellent, the other a dud.

The excellent one is “The King’s Speech”, an Oscar frontrunner and a real treat for fans of superb acting, not to mention a great script, characters to latch on to, and an overall vision that lifts the film to be one of the best of the year.

Colin Firth (surely he will win the Oscar) stars as the stuttering Duke Of York, soon to be King George VI. With the help of an Australian speech therapist (Geoffrey Rush) he overcomes his impediment but not before a very entertaining cinematic experience is had by all. Ably assisted by a fine English cast and a supportive future Queen Mother (Helena Bonham Carter shining once again). Oh and another Aussie – Guy Pearce who is fabulous in his small role as the abdicating Edward. Director Tom Hooper does an excellent job balancing a commercial entertainment and slightly art house fare. Intelligent filmaking at its best.

The dud film is the new study of celebrity by Sophia Coppola “Somewhere”. I have enjoyed her previous films on different levels this one I didn’t enjoy at all. A film about a bored actor (Stephen Dorff trying very hard to no avail) holed up at the Chateau Marmont hotel in Hollywood. The boredom factor unfortunately bores the audience. Some may think the slow long takes and repeats may be clever observations of ennui, I don’t. I call it pretentious. The main character is just not that interesting, his daughter whom he is saddled with played by Elle Fanning is the best thing in the flick. Sophia Coppola has told  a very similar tale before, much more successfully with the excellent “Lost In Translation”, why repeat herself? It should have been a short subject film, say 40 mins max, then it may have worked. When I come out of a film saying to myself  ‘what’s the point’ it really annoys me. Also on a visual level it had nothing to add to the dullness. I got absolutely no pleasure from this film at all. 😦

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A theatrical year (part 1 of 4)

The year 2010 was a productive theatrical one. I saw more theatre than usual, although not as much as I would have liked. Theatre is expensive. A trip to New York helped to boost. The Broadway called and I came. Funny enough it was, according to experts, and me, a bit of a dud season, but I saw shows on the great white way, so who’s complaining?

In my theatrical year I will include live concert performances ( sadly only 1 this year) and will include NT Live and Met Live screenings – in my own opinion still theatrical, and at least I can comment.

I doubt I will get to see another live concert performance, or a stage show, by years end. So I can announce my faves and winners and dogs! for 2010.

The year started with a repeat. I was working in Adelaide and the touring Australian production of “Avenue Q” was in town. I had previously seen this fine & funny brilliant musical in London (the same as the Broadway production), and in 2009 I went to see it in Melbourne (the Oz version). Whilst almost the same, except for a few set changes (for the worst) and obvious puppetry changes cos the Oz cast could not achieve the demands, it was OK. leading actor way to old but his side kick and a brilliant Trekkie Monster was great. Saw the Kate Monster understudy – both time! she was excellent. Whilst not as good as the London production, the Ozcast was ok, the material so strong – I loved it!

Mitchel Butel & Michaela (whatever her name is?) never saw her, only the very good understudy – shouldn’t live performers never miss as performance? Hmmmmm

On my return home to Melbourne, I saw the MTC production of “The Drowsy Chaperone”. What a treat it was. Definately a close carbon copy of the Broadway hit – the norm for outgoing MTC director 🙂 Simon Phillips. Geoffrey Rush as the ‘man in the chair’, was fantabulous, physically stunning and so right for the part, it was a revelation. The rest of the cast were great, it was such a hoot and a highlight of the year, for the material and Mr Rush, not necessarily the direction.

The brilliantly cast Mr. Rush

My one and only live concert performance was seeing one of my favorite groups ever – Massive Attack. Say no more, I have seen them every time they have performed in Australia. At the Myer Music Bowl they were superb. I love them, adore them, they do it for me everytime. HEAVEN

Love the Massive Attack symbol – fire sign, hold it painfully close to my chest 🙂

I was not sure about seeing “Jersey Boys”. A jukebox musical (usually a lame prospect). I was working hard and needed an escape, decided at the last minute to see a matinee, so off I went with a good friend who needed the escape as much as me. Well the skill of the direction, the Broadway pizzazz and tricks all in place. A talented cast, great book. Suprisingy great music, hits and more hits! I can see why it is still a huge hit on Broadway, a classy show. Wiped out the cynic in me…for the time being.

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Filed under Theatre

The Jacki & Judy show.

After the excitement of Jacki Weaver’s triumphant win at the AFI awards I am beside myself that she is doing so well with the American critics. Years ago I predicted Geoffrey Rush would do well with “Shine” and we know how well that went. Tomorrow’s Golden Globe nominations announcement will surely confirm that the divine Jacki will be confirmed for an Oscar nom…..and I predict – a win!  Now for a future prediction………if the juggernaut of critics and film fans have true taste and cannot ignore performance greatness, the release of Fred Schepisi’s film version of Nobel prize winning author, Patrick White’s “The Eye Of The Storm” next year will gain attention due to the truly brilliant and great actress Judy Davis….mark my words, you heard it first. A performance that cannot and will not be ignored, if I have my way.

Go Jacki !, Go Judy !

Judy Davis in “The Eye Of The Storm” photo: Matt Netheim

Jacki Weaver performing in “Steel Magnolias”, an acclaimed stage actress, her performance as Ouisa Kittredge in “Six Degrees Of Separation” was sublime!


Filed under Awards, movies