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Pfandom: Cool Rider and a Pink (Leading) Lady

1 hour ago

on the set of Grease 2, her first lead roleP F A N D O M  

Michelle Pfeiffer Retrospective. Episode 8 

by Nathaniel R 

We've mostly focused on Michelle Pfeiffer's acting in our Pfandom retrospective. We're sure the star who has described herself as "extremely private" would like it that way, but this would be the appropriate time for a brief bit of personal context.

Though the young actress had been working nonstop since the late 70s in television roles and a few features, she'd been struggling offscreen. She was impatient with the way her career was developing. She'd also become involved with a cult, an experience she's always been cagey about in interviews. She had given them too much of her money and was eating strangely at their insistence. In 1981, she took back control of her life.

At the Grease 2 premiere in NYC with her new husband Peter Horton »

- NATHANIEL R

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Feud: Bette and Joan "More or Less"

4 hours ago

Previously

1 "Pilot"

2 "The Other Woman" 

3 "Mommie Dearest

by Eric Blume

Episode 4, “More, Or Less” marks the halfway point for Feud: Bette and Joan, and this episode focuses on power and limitations, not only for its title characters, but for everyone surrounding them.  

This episode sees both lead actresses confronted by a lack of offers after the completion of shooting Whatever Happed to Baby Jane?.  Susan Sarandon’s reaction to meeting her new young agent is priceless, and Jessica Lange has a “fuck you fellas” scene that feels right out of Mommie Dearest.  

»

- Eric Blume

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Beauty vs Beast: My Fiancée's Best Friend

7 hours ago

Jason from Mnpp here for another round of "Beauty vs Beast." I was doing my umpteenth (literally, my umpteenth) post on Muriel's Wedding over at my own site this past week when I realized that I really do not give enough attention and affection to director Pj Hogan's masterful follow-up film, 1997's deliciously cold-blooded Julia Roberts rom-com My Best Friend's Wedding. Which turns 20 in June! That's nuts!

On the page the character that Julia plays is a selfish and manipulative monster, but Roberts pushes the star wattage to full-tilt (has her hair ever been bigger and bouncier?) and charms us even as she's being despicable. (God do I understand and empathize with Jules, much to my horror.) Meanwhile Cameron Diaz, one year before There's Something About Mary, gave her own off-the-charts effervescence to the woman we were supposed to, but it was impossible to, hate. Take your corners...

Previously »

- JA

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When "Life" Goes Wrong...

10 hours ago

by Nathaniel R

Stop me if you've heard this one before: a group of scientists are tasked with bringing samples of life back from outer space. Soon they are trapped in a nightmarish monster movie, as the alien life force picks them off one by one.

Life, the latest monster movie set in space, does a lot of things right despite its familiarity. Let's give credit where it's due. It hired capable involving actors in all the underwritten roles including Jake Gyllenhaal who we'll follow anywhere, even into deep space for a Alien ripoff. It's very handsomely lensed by prestigious cinematographer Seamus McGarvey. The direction by Daniel Espinosa (Child 44, Safe House) makes repeated smart use of the zero gravity setting, with well staged setpieces and even some unexpectedly beautiful compositions; the earliest casualty among the crew prompts the movie's eeriest morbidly pretty image. Apart from one confusing action sequence near the climax, »

- NATHANIEL R

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The Furniture: A Tarot Reading with "The Love Witch"

12 hours ago

 "The Furniture" is our weekly series on Production Design. You can click on the images to see them in much more magnified detail. Here's Daniel Walber...

Over the last year, I’ve written about a fair number films in which the costume design and production design are intimate companions. The Taming of the Shrew is the most recent example, a visual cornucopia that underlines Zeffirelli’s tendency to paint people and props with the same brush. Yet that flamboyant director was not actually the credited costume designer or production designer. His style, like that of most filmmakers, was the result of artistic collaboration.

Not so for The Love Witch, a much more literal “singular vision.” Director Anna Biller worked as both production designer and costume designer for her film, as well as art director, set decorator, editor, composer, writer and producer. The film’s strikingly unified aesthetic certainly can be attributed to this herculean labor, »

- Daniel Walber

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On this day: Gloria Swanson, Typhoid Mary, and Sacheen Littlefeather

14 hours ago

On this day in history as it relates to showbiz...

Gloria Swanson surrounded by herself in Sunset Blvd

1898 Oscar winning costume designer Norma Koch is born. She designed the costumes on both of the main movies that Feud: Bette and Joan revolves around, winning for Baby Jane though Feud seems to hand the costuming credit on that movie over to Bette Davis

1899 The iconic Gloria Swanson (Sunset Blvd) is born »

- NATHANIEL R

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