The Starling needs a pro vs. con scoresheet for its uneven story. The pros come in the form of a really lovely cast who make the material as good as possible. The cons are that the story is overly sentimental and employs knock-you-over-the-head symbolism to tell the tale. It’s streaming on Netflix. There is a big spoiler ahead.Continue reading “Review: The Starling, in which Melissa McCarthy gets serious”
No Strings Attached is a 2011 romantic comedy directed by Ivan Reitman. It’s warm and clever and has a fabulous cast of folks who were on the cusp of famous back then, as well as the already famous Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher.Continue reading “Review: No Strings Attached”
Lucky for me I’m not a critic. It seems to me that the main job of a critic is to watch a fun and enjoyable movie or TV show and find things wrong with it so as to make it unenjoyable for anyone else to watch. Which leads to my point: Ricki and the Flash is fun and enjoyable. Lukewarm reviews be damned.
Spoilers ahead.Continue reading “Review: Ricki and the Flash”
I am somewhat (okay, a whole lot) excited about Ricki and The Flash. The first excitement is the star Meryl Streep. Next, there’s the writer Diablo Cody.
But wait! There’s more! Check this out:
“Meryl Streep takes on a whole new gig – a hard-rocking singer/guitarist – for Oscar®-winning director Jonathan Demme and Academy Award®-winning screenwriter Diablo Cody in Ricki and the Flash. In an original and electrifying film loaded with live musical performances, Streep stars as Ricki Rendazzo, a guitar heroine who made a world of mistakes as she followed her dreams of rock-and-roll stardom. Returning home, Ricki gets a shot at redemption and a chance to make things right as she faces the music with her family. Streep stars opposite her real-life daughter Mamie Gummer; Rick Springfield, portraying a Flash member in love with Ricki; Kevin Kline as Ricki’s ex-husband; and Audra McDonald as Kline’s new wife.”
Oh, my, what a cast. Meryl Streep singing rock and roll and slinging a guitar around like she knows what to do with it. Oh, my.
There is something so magical about Meryl Streep. Just a glance at this image of her in her costume and you know she’s going to kill in this part. In real life she’s 65, matronly, wearing glasses and a not very exciting dress. Put her in front of a camera, yell action, and something special happens. I feel lucky to be able to watch what Meryl Streep does and be amazed by it again and again.
Mamie Gummer lets herself look like hell in this film. I love that. I love the smacking that Ricki gets from her family, from her ex husband’s new wife. I love the Rick Springfield, the Kevin Kline, the Audra McDonald. This film better be good, because I love it.
Enough already with the gushing. See what you think of the trailer. The film opens August 7.
Meryl Streep images © 2015 – Sony Pictures Entertainment
For some reason, the previews for My Old Lady led me to expect a comedy. Maybe with a bit of romance thrown in. Well, there was a bit of romance and a bit of comedy, but it was really a serious drama about family pain, neglect, trauma, and ultimately love. Continue reading “Review: My Old Lady”
Over the next few months there will be several films with women leading the cast coming to your theater. I celebrate every one! Here are a few – I probably missed some. Let me know in the comments if there’s something I missed that shouldn’t be missed.
Keira Knightley and Chloë Grace Moretz head up the cast of Laggies.
You’re Not You
You’re Not You features Emmy Rossum and Hilary Swank with Josh Duhamel providing the male lead.
The Good Lie
The Good Lie belongs 100% to Reese Witherspoon.
In Gone Girl, Rosamund Pike is the gone girl. We also get lots of Ben Affleck. Did you read this book? It must have been hard to adapt as a movie because of the unreliable narrator issue. Be interesting to see if they can make it work.
The Skeleton Twins
The twins in The Skeleton Twins are played by Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader. Luke Wilson is also in this one.
Oh dear, some really serious stuff is going on with Robin Wright who is playing Robin Wright in The Congress. Is it too soon to start drawing interconnections with every woman on the planet?
The Last of Robin Hood
I hesitated to include The Last of Robin Hood because it’s really about Errol Flynn (played by Kevin Kline). And it’s about an old Errol Flynn taking a young woman as a lover. All kinds of YUK. But there seems to be enough of Dakota Fanning and Susan Sarandon justify it.
A Few More Films Mentioned Recently
Several more upcoming films featuring women in the leading roles have been mentioned here lately. Just as a reminder, they are:
My Old Lady stars Kevin Kline, Maggie Smith and Kristen Scott Thomas. Kevin Kline inherits a Paris apartment from his estranged father. When he goes to France to claim it, he finds he cannot sell it until the current inhabitant – Maggie Smith – dies.
Kristen Scott Thomas plays Maggie Smith’s daughter.
That two fabulous women like Maggie Smith and Kristen Scott Thomas are identified as “old” in the film is a sad commentary on life. I suggest naming the film, “My Beautiful Lady.” But whatever you call it, I want to see it.
My Old Lady will be released in the U.S. in September. It was produced by BBC Films. Take a look at the preview.
The film is based on a play written by the screenwriter and director Israel Horovitz.
Images © 2014 – Cohen Media Group
Queen to Play – original title Joueuse – is a little-known French film that is quiet, beautiful and ultimately uplifting. Released in French in 2009, it’s available on Netflix and Amazon Prime. I think you’ll love it. Beware, spoilers ahead. Continue reading “Queen to Play: Small and Beautiful”