Wednesday, September 30, 2009

"Even Elinor must approve of the rent..."

Its not in Devonshire but London, and its not a cottage but an apartment - but I have found a new home (with two friends). And I may safely hope that even Miss Elinor Dashwood - the voice of sense in Sense & Sensibility - would approve of this find. Hoorah!

Let us hope that we won't be welcomed as 'affectionately' as the Dashwoods were.

(And no, the faces of myself and two chums were not so glum!)

Sunday, September 27, 2009

"It was like remembering something I'd never known before..."

Alexander Payne - through the wonderful Margo Martindale - summed up my own revelatory adoration for London in his wonderful addition to Paris Je T'aime.

Sitting Basking in the sun, watching the city go through the motions and reassuring my nerves about home search, 'uni' (for that is what the hip name for what I once called college), etc. - I fell for the city, its inhabitants and my newfound life here...

About time too. I thought it was a lost cause! Hoorah!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Friday, September 25, 2009

Saturday, September 19, 2009

What were you so sad about?

In London. At the beginning of the end of a relationship. Searching for a home. Starting a new life. I feel as if I've been thrown into Closer territory.

The city has been diminished to a dark palet and promises, hopes and dreams have been fulfilled and dashed accordingly.

Perhaps the only answer is to adopt a pseudonym, wear a pink wig, become a stripper and request a transfer to the happy-go-lucky world of Richard Curtis? (With a preference for Four Weddings rather than Love Actually).

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Monday, September 14, 2009

No more Mr. nice Darcy.

After celebrating the man a handful of days ago, we can now safely welcome Colin Firth into the Best Actor race 2010 after his win at the Venice Film Festival last Saturday night for A Single Man.


Saturday, September 12, 2009

A Single Man.

Although its without a distributor, A Single Man made a solid impression on audiences and critics alike at the Venice Film Festival and - with its freshly released trailer - there is much to get excited over with this directial debut of Tom Ford.

It looks as if he had Savage Grace in mind when he cast Julianne Moore - she looks ravishing. As do the beautiful men surrounding her (including my one and only, Lee Pace!).

I am wet with excitement!

Friday, September 11, 2009

The rush of battle is often a potent and lethal addiction, for war is a drug...

...And so begins the most intense cinematic experience of the year. Kathryn Bigelow's The Hurk Locker already has critics falling over themselves in praise - and deservedly so. Not only is it an impeccably made film but it is cinema's bravest, and most compelling, look at the war in Iraq yet.

It pitches America as the anti-hero and opens an interesting debate, deepened by the wondrous characterisation of the film's leading man and the US military's cowboy, Sgt. William James. Hungry for war, steeped in arrogance and seemingly ignorant of protocol; James exhibits all those characteristics that came to represent the USA since 9/11. It is to Jeremy Renner's credit that audiences - on this side of the pond, at least - cannot help but root for James despite, and ultimately because of, these unfavourable traits.

That is not to say that this is Renner's film, on the contrary there is so much to celebrate here from the superb direction to the spot-on writing to the flawless performances and the fearless cinematography. Regardless of your own take on events in Iraq, this is filmmaking at its best.

Adding to the impact was my realisation midway that I was sitting through this on the anniversary of 9/11.

Riveting stuff!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Where the Wild Things Are x4

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"I bet it's huge"

Its been a busy week for Up In the Air, charming audiences at the Venice Film Festival and causing an online stir with the release of its teaser trailer and clip.

And with two Oscar darlings onboard - George Clooney and Juno director Jason Reitman - this may be the strongest hopeful yet for awards glory come March 2010. But could this extend to Vera Farmiga, "the heart of the movie"?

Said clip and teaser establish Farmiga’s Alex as the romantic interest of Clooney’s Ryan, a man whose occupation requires he spend 322 days a year in the air. If Farmiga's performance exhibits some pathos alongside her sassy, sexy and quick-witted nature permeated through the teaser, then we're in for a treat and she should have a solid chance of making the Supporting Actress list (if word is right and she is supporting).

But will the Academy really bite? Memories of Reitman's previous Supporting Actress hopeful, Jennifer Garner, are not reassuring. Still, Farmiga may gain her well-deserved break, with or without Oscar's help, thanks to Reitman & co. Hooray!

Thursday, September 10, 2009


"Personally, Veda's convinced me that alligators have the right idea. They eat their young."

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"Actors are basically drag queens"

Welcome ticklepickleme back!

Today we celebrate the 49th year of our favourite Mark Darcy, Colin Firth.

I can hear a wave of angry film fans vying for his blood; Mamma Mia!, St. Trinians, The Accidental Husband, What A Girl Wants - he has made many cinematic sins yet his forays into worlds outside of the rom-com offer more than enough to repent, despite their limited successes*. Case in point, Dorian Gray.

Cast as the wonderfully mischievous and utterly charming Lord Henry Wotton, Firth not only had to bring one of Oscar Wilde's finest creations to life (its between him and Lady Bracknell) but also had to fill the mighty boots of one of cinema's greatest thespians, George Sanders, who excelled in the same role back in 1945. Quite a task!

Many will be unsurprised to hear that the film itself is a shambles; despite looking the part Ben Barnes is ill-equipped to play the titular character, the look of the film is so distractingly gothic that it makes Sweeney Todd seem like the Wizard of Oz and this particular version betrays its source by attempting to please modern tastes (note to Oliver Parker: you failed, now please leave Wilde alone!). However Firth remains a beacon of light throughout. His Wotton may not be as delicious as Sanders' but he anchors the performance with unexpected compassion, a rewarding concept that adds much needed gravitas to this otherwise aloof rendition. This alone must make up for, say, his contribution to Mamma Mia! - right?

What? Is that a "No!" I hear? Then look no further to Tom Ford's cinematic debut, A Single Man, where Firth takes centre stage alongside Julianne Moore. Which seems incredibly adpt when you consider that Moore's career also steers towards the sinful when working within the realm of rom-com (although her successes are all her own). The film will debut tomorrow at the Venice Film Festival and here's hoping that it'll break Firth out of the Darcy mold and expose him as the artist he is. Or more accurately, who he wants to be.

*for him anyway, in the case of The English Patient.