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Found 8 results

  1. (A&F links to Apollo 13 (1995), The Missing (2003), Cinderella Man (2005), Frost/Nixon (2008), The Dilemma (2011) and Rush (2013).) Based on the book, In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex by Nathaniel Philbrick.
  2. John Drew

    A Beautiful Mind

    We don't seem to have a thread for this film. I hate to start one with this tragic news... "A Beautiful Mind" Mathematician John Nash and His Wife Killed in New Jersey Taxi Crash
  3. I watched it over a couple evenings, but last night I finished watching Apollo 13 with the Jim & Marilyn Lovell commentary track turned on. I had only seen this film once before, back when it was brand new, and I liked it again the second time around. There is something strangely compelling about films like this, or the documentary about the Shackleton expedition that came out a couple years ago, and the way they take you into situations where people are relying on what now seems like terribly outdated and unreliable technology (as I said when I first saw Apollo 13, "I wouldn't drive a CAR with that kind of technology..."), and then one big thing goes wrong and everyone has to hope and pray a lot of little things will go right in order for our intrepid explorers just to stay alive. (Unlike Shackleton, though, the astronauts did at least have the advantage of being able to talk their situation through with Houston.) The audio commentary isn't the most enlightening -- there are quite a few points where the real James Lovell explains why the Tom Hanks version of him is doing what he's doing, but you'd know most of that just by watching the film -- but it's still fun to hear him point out which parts of the film are accurate and which parts were there just for "artistic license" (which is a phrase that comes up quite a bit! Lovell's wife Marilyn also uses that phrase when describing a scene where the Kathleen Quinlan version of her swears at one of the NASA honchos -- as Marilyn puts it, "everyone knows" she didn't really talk to anyone like that). It's also interesting to hear Marilyn choke up even now while watching certain parts of the film. But my favorite moment would have to be near the beginning, when Tom Hanks starts to get frisky with Kathleen Quinlan in the back yard, and James Lovell says, "Hey, was I ever that romantic?" and Marilyn says something like, "I'm not going to comment on that." There's also a fairly lengthy documentary on the disc that seamlessly integrates the history of what happened with the making of the film -- so one second we're watching archival press-conference footage from 30 years ago, and the next, we're watching a guy explain the special effects. Kinda nifty, I thought. And it's kinda weird to think that the cast and crew of this film spent more time in those zero-gravity-simulator planes (or whatever they're called) than any astronaut ever did, simply because of all the takes and re-takes they had to do (though many shots WERE filmed on the ground, with the actors wobbling around on the set).
  4. Ron Howard seems to be taking a page out of the Oliver Stone book with his casting of Frank Langella as Nixon. From the trailer, I'm having a difficult time buying him as Nixon. In some bits, Langella has the voice down, but in others it seems awfully forced.
  5. Persona

    The Dilemma (2011)

    I just thought this would be a cool, different way to start off a thread. In Chicago, we always hear about Vince Vaughn. He's reported as being seen eating at this restaurant, hanging with this particular person, at this Cubs loss. He's a Chicago boy, although I don't know if he actually still lives in the town. But he's here all the time. His latest with Ron Howard, The Dilemma, is now moving into post-production. They wrapped the Chicago portion of their film last week -- although with the Transformers 3 craze, we might have never known they were here. They took out a full page ad in the Chicago Sun Times when they left last week, thanking the 2010 Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks, McCormick Place, The United Center, the Teamsters, The National Hockey League, the Chicago Film Office, the Illinois Film Office, The towns Morton Grove and Niles, the transit authority and the Chicago fire and police departments, it said: "All of whom made our work much easier and the results much greater... -Ron Howard, Vince Vaughn and the Cast and Crew of The Dilemma" I thought that was a very cool gesture. Now we'll have to see about how the film is. Due out in January 2011, also starring Jennifer Connelly, Winona Ryder, Channing Tatum, Kevin James and Queen Latifah.
  6. I have a pass to see Cinderella Man next week, and although I haven�t much enjoyed a Ron Howard film since my high-school days, his latest one is starting to make some noise with conservative critics. Check out this brief National Review blog, from John Podhoretz: �Howard has become his generation's answer to William Wyler -- a classic cinematic storyteller who can work wonders in any genre. As for Russell Crowe, there's almost no superlative that wouldn't be appropriate. Crowe hasn't made a full-on comedy yet. If it turns out he can do that too, Russell Crowe will then have proved himself unquestionably the greatest screen actor not only of our time, but probably of all time.� SDG, I notice you've listed it as "upcoming" over at Decent Films. Can you spill the beans yet? Anyone else seen it?
  7. One of the Ted Baehrisms I like to gripe about the most is his claim that Ron Howard's The Grinch was a basically "Christian" film, for no apparently better reason than the fact that Howard supposedly goes to church. I wonder, then, what Baehr will make of The Missing, which is basically all about the interweaving of Christian and pagan spirituality -- I would even say it is about the erasing of the line between religion and magic (to the extent that there IS a line; among anthropologists, I gather the subject is a matter of some debate), except we see no formal "religion" in this film beyond the personal faith of Cate Blanchett's character, her boyfriend, and her daughters. THEMATIC (BUT NOT REALLY PLOT) SPOILERS Suffice to say, though, that by the end of this film, there has been an exchange of spiritually-significant jewelry -- Cate is wearing Tommy Lee Jones's Apache necklace to ward off a curse, and Tommy Lee Jones is wearing Cate's cross. And this linking of Native American magic with Christian faith is made explicit in one scene in which an Indian healing ceremony is performed on a certain person while someone stands off to the side, reciting the "begats" at the beginning of Matthew's gospel. Now, while it is true that the Epistle of James talks about anointing sick people with oil, and while I think the Book of Acts even alludes to people being healed because items blessed by the apostles were brought to them, and while all of this may seem phenomenologically identical to "magic", I cannot think of anything in the Bible which would indicate that we should just recite any old text at random in order to heal someone, especially an almost meaningless string of names; during this scene, I was reminded of the amulets and incantations collected in one of the books on my shelf, namely Ancient Christian Magic, edited by Marvin Meyer and Richard Smith. I could say more about this film, but I haven't got time at the moment. Might later, though.
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