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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by wilberfan on Today at 12:01:43 AM »
In honoring Paul Thomas Anderson's 'Phantom Thread,' the academy shows there's more to greatness than relevance

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/movies/la-et-mn-oscars-critic-phantom-thread-20180123-story.html


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Sorry, everyone. Those loud noises you heard around 5:30 this morning were almost certainly my shouts of delight and surprise at learning that "Phantom Thread" — generally perceived to be an awards-season also-ran — had received an unexpected but richly deserved haul of six Academy Award nominations.

Paul Thomas Anderson's 1950s London chamber drama was expected to receive at least three of those six, for Jonny Greenwood's score, Mark Bridges' costumes and Daniel Day-Lewis' lead performance as a petulantly exacting couturier named Reynolds Woodcock.

Far fewer industry observers were predicting the film to factor into the highly competitive races for best picture, director and supporting actress, where Lesley Manville received a nomination for her magnificently icy turn as Woodcock's sister and business partner.

There were reasons to be skeptical, especially in a year in which "relevance" and "diversity" have become necessary if inevitably overused watchwords. "The Shape of Water," "Lady Bird" and "Get Out," all of which did expectedly well in the nominations, made significant strides for greater inclusiveness, in terms of the stories they told and the filmmakers they employed. "Call Me by Your Name" gracefully ushered the gay love story closer to the mainstream, while "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" showily engaged the zeitgeist as a thriller about sexual assault and race relations in small-town America.

Including "Phantom Thread" on his 2017 top-10 list, the New York Times critic A.O. Scott wrote, "There are movies that satisfy the hunger for relevance, the need to see the urgent issues of the day reflected on screen." Anderson's film, he noted, "is emphatically and sublimely not one of them." It is, on the contrary, a ravishing connoisseur's object — a film that rehabilitates stories, themes and images from the golden age of Hollywood melodrama, all in service of a perverse meditation on obsession, duplicity, power and the inherent vice of heterosexual relations.

I suppose you could read some darkly feminist subtext into Vicky Krieps' bravura performance as a young muse and paramour seizing control over Woodcock and her own destiny, but to do so would be to force Anderson's splendidly slippery creation into a generic mold that it instinctively rebels against. In an era when the rallying cry of #OscarsSoWhite has ceded the social-media spotlight to the #MeToo movement, "Phantom Thread's" retreat into a bygone era of haute couture and mushroom omelets feels at once timeless and gloriously untimely.

There was another, more practical reason to assume that "Phantom Thread" might have missed its moment. The Focus Features release, which opened Christmas Day, was one of the year's last major entries to screen for craft guilds and critics' groups, giving it little time to court industry momentum and seep into the cultural consciousness. And as "The Post" and "All the Money in the World" can perhaps attest, it can be risky to arrive too late in the conversation, even for understandable, unforeseeable reasons.

Given director Ridley Scott's miraculous last-minute tinkering, "All the Money in the World" can probably count itself victorious for scoring a lone nomination for Christopher Plummer's supporting performance — a marvelous piece of screen acting that is being partly rewarded, no doubt, for the nearly unprecedented speed and urgency with which it came together.

The lackluster fate of "The Post," a crackerjack newsroom thriller about the freedom of the press in the face of hostile government interference, is a more mysterious thing to contemplate. As evidenced by a well-timed Seth Meyers bit at the Golden Globes, a topical drama starring Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks, and directed by Steven Spielberg, might have been expected to run the table.

But it came up empty-handed that night, was largely overlooked by the guilds and, in the end, scored only two Oscar nominations, for picture and lead actress (Streep) — major categories, to be sure, but far less than what 20th Century Fox must have been hoping for.

Was it simply too obvious a choice? Did academy voters resent the appearance of being courted with such an embarrassment of Oscar-bait riches? Did they not want to repeat themselves after giving best picture two years ago to "Spotlight," a less flashy but quietly superior examination of the inner workings of the Fourth Estate? Or were there perhaps deeper, structural faults in "The Post," a terrifically entertaining movie whose timeliness may have been both its greatest strength and its greatest weakness?

What's bracing about Spielberg's movie is its lack of self-importance; it moves too briskly and efficiently to linger on its own worthiness. But that worthiness looms over it all the same. In giving us a proto-feminist heroine in the form of Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham, striking a 1st Amendment blow against a corrupt presidential administration, "The Post" might have gambled a bit too boldly, reverse-engineering its own relevance rather than allowing it to arise organically from the material.

"Phantom Thread," by contrast, arrived in December feeling like the very opposite of a rush job. Visually and musically exquisite, a luxuriant swirl of silk and crinoline, it's the kind of movie that seduces you into a world as fully formed as the Manderley of Alfred Hitchcock's "Rebecca" (1940), one of its most significant influences.

For all Anderson's fastidiousness as a stylist and his idiosyncrasies as a storyteller, he has made an audience picture through and through: a witty, subversive dark comedy that had the audience cackling repeatedly, and in all the right places, both times I saw it. Indeed, were I in a mood to quibble, I might have faulted the academy for not giving "Phantom Thread" its proper due in the original screenplay race, especially considering Anderson's past writing nominations for "Boogie Nights," "Magnolia," "There Will Be Blood" and "Inherent Vice."

Still, that strong track record, plus the seven Oscar-nominated performances he's directed (including Day-Lewis' winning turn in "There Will Be Blood"), suggests the industry has always held this filmmaker in high regard — for the intelligence and muscularity of his filmmaking, for his love for the traditions and myths of classic Hollywood cinema, and perhaps above all for his unswerving allegiance to his own vision.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Interviews
« Last post by Mogambo on Yesterday at 11:42:19 PM »
https://beta.theglobeandmail.com/arts/film/why-director-paul-thomas-anderson-may-be-the-best-hope-for-mature-hollywoodmovies/article37473794/

The Golden Globes burn is  :bravo:

Yeah. PTA doesn't seem to give too much of a shit about awards anymore. Phantom Thread has received universal acclaim, will probably win a couple of Oscars, because PTA has been pumping out classics for 20 years now. PTA won't have a problem with getting movies funded for a while after this one. Shit, if this wins one of the big ones (picture, director, actor), Focus might even give PTA a sweet deal and studio backing just like Nolan does with WB.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by wilder on Yesterday at 09:04:55 PM »
the other three are leads in the front-running films

Overall though, none of this shit matters beyond getting the next project funded. Actual Oscars are bullshit, but they are business. And its all about that next project.

Sigh. You're right. Politics.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by Fuzzy Dunlop on Yesterday at 08:59:39 PM »
Also not surprised, but nominating DDL and Manville over Krieps feels like a misunderstanding of the movie on the part of the Academy

...which is pretty much par for the course for the Academy, though I'll say the competition in the Best Actress category was tougher this year than in the other two. Streep got her auto-nom, Margot Robbie is having an it girl moment, and the other three are leads in the front-running films. Vicky is still breaking out and will be there in a few years if she keeps picking the right roles.

Overall though, none of this shit matters beyond getting the next project funded. Actual Oscars are bullshit, but they are business. And after the virtual shut-out of Inherent Vice (and its financial underperformance), its a relief to see Paul/Phantom Thread get so much love for two very practical reasons:

1. Focus will have to continue pushing the film for the next few months, with a longer stretch of theatrical exhibition and a bigger, wider promotional push, meaning more people will see it and it will make more money, with the added bonuses of more PTA interviews and more chances for us to see it in theaters.

2. Because of the above, studios will be more likely to gamble money on his next project. And its all about that next project.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by wilberfan on Yesterday at 08:44:54 PM »
Also not surprised, but nominating DDL and Manville over Krieps feels like a misunderstanding of the movie on the part of the Academy, even though they recognized it in other prominent categories. Like they didn’t see the same thing. The writing omission and Tichenor’s exclusion also speak to that. Given that the Academy members nominating are supposed be people who most closely understand the craft they’re deciding on (editors nominating editors etc.), it’s just bizarre.

The “loudest” thing always seems to get the most attention (see also, the 'Sound' category: did any other film nominated communicate story with sound like Phantom Thread? Fuck no). No other movie nominated this year had as tricky a balance of tone and information flow as it, either, or was doing as much that was new. Tichenor deserves a medal for his work on it, let alone a golden statue. It doesn't matter if it gets awards or not, but when it's nominated for a specific few in lieu of others, it's weird.

This. All of this. Yes.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by wilder on Yesterday at 07:49:02 PM »
Also not surprised, but nominating DDL and Manville over Krieps feels like a misunderstanding of the movie on the part of the Academy, even though they recognized it in other prominent categories. Like they didn’t see the same thing. The writing omission and Tichenor’s exclusion also speak to that. Given that the Academy members nominating are supposed be people who most closely understand the craft they’re deciding on (editors nominating editors etc.), it’s just bizarre.

The “loudest” thing always seems to get the most attention (see also, the 'Sound' category: did any other film nominated communicate story with sound like Phantom Thread? Fuck no). No other movie nominated this year had as tricky a balance of tone and information flow as it, either, or was doing as much that was new. Tichenor deserves a medal for his work on it, let alone a golden statue. It doesn't matter if it gets awards or not, but when it's nominated for a specific few in lieu of others, it's weird.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by eward on Yesterday at 07:43:21 PM »
It is, I guess I just don't believe it's going to win in any category (maaaaaybe costumes and score but it feels like a long shot) so my excitement isn't properly pitched.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by Fuzzy Dunlop on Yesterday at 07:39:17 PM »
Such a ridiculous snub. DDL doesn't need another trophy. Nor does Meryl Streep - she was good and all in The Post, but let's get real: Vicky Krieps is one of the great cinematic finds of this century and ahhh fuck the Oscars.

I mean, I get it, she's amazing in the film, but she's been getting snubbed pretty consistently all season so its not surprising at all. Phantom Thread did a hell of a lot better than I was expecting so I don't think its a moment to complain. Best Picture and Director noms? That's fantastic fucking news.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Interviews
« Last post by eward on Yesterday at 07:14:02 PM »
Spoilers abound, but that interview is chockfull of info he hasn't really touched on yet...really great stuff.
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Paul Thomas Anderson / Re: Phantom Thread - Awards ticker
« Last post by eward on Yesterday at 06:59:56 PM »
Such a ridiculous snub. DDL doesn't need another trophy. Nor does Meryl Streep - she was good and all in The Post, but let's get real: Vicky Krieps is one of the great cinematic finds of this century and ahhh fuck the Oscars.
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