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Entries in Best Actor (213)

Monday
Jul172017

"Being There" -- Essential Viewing For the Right Now

by Nathaniel R

Hal Ashby’s Being There (1979) is a fortune teller. And the future it foretells isn’t rosy. The classic film about a TV-loving cypher who Forrest Gumps his way into history is approaching its 40th anniversary, but its essential viewing for the right now.  Don't wait until 2019 to see it.

Among the film’s many queasy previews of life in the early 21st century is the proliferation of screens. Here that takes the shape of television, with Ashby frequent crosscutting to whatever is on the TV in a given scene. Though the content we see is recognizably dated, its intrusion is evergreen. 

Hidden within the prophecy of multiple screens replacing actual experience, is an even sharper notion of the screen as a mirror...

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Sunday
Jul022017

C O N S I D E R - Actors of 2017, 2nd Qtr

With the year's second quarter over, we've begun listing highlights as you saw yesterday with Best Films and Technical Achievements. So here's a listicle of noteworthy male performances we'll eventually compare to what's to come and what came before (the best male performances of the first quarter are back here). These are my personal favorites from screenings and releases from April 1st through June 30th (though not all of these have opened in theaters yet - those that haven't are marked with an asterisk). Herewith the 17 best male performances from the year's second quarter, divvied up into three categories. Did these actors resonate with you? 

Disclaimer: Key male actor heavy movies I missed this quarter were Fate of the Furious, Free Fire, King Arthur, Pirates of the Caribbean, Sleight,  and Their Finest. If you've seen them give their MVPs a shout-out.

5 LEADING ACTORS

 

Jon Bernthal as "Sam" in Sweet Virginia*

Ansel Elgort as "Baby" in Baby Driver...

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Thursday
Jun222017

YNMS: "Stronger"

Chris here. Could this finally be Jake Gyllenhaal's Oscar year? Of course it's too early to call (and we won't jinx our adored Jake) but he's got a true life drama coming that's right in the Academy's wheelhouse: David Gordon Green's Stronger.

Gyllenhaal stars as Jeff Bauman, a survivor of the Boston Marathon bombing that lost both legs and helped identify the assailants. The film charts his recovery and rehabilitation as he becomes the face of the survivors for the city of Boston and the world at large. True story, disability, big emotion - quite a few of Oscar's favorite pasttimes, and maybe a more mainstream play for Gyllenhaal. But how does the film look? Take a look at the first trailer and we'll run down the Yes No Maybe So after the jump...

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Monday
Jun122017

Emmy FYC: Justin Theroux in "The Leftovers" 

For the next two weeks with Emmy nominating ballots in progress Team Experience will be sharing personal favorites. Here's Eric Blume...

When you talk about Justin Theroux, inevitably you turn to the subject of fairness.  On one level, is it fair to the rest of us mortals that Justin Theroux looks like this... 

Then again, it’s exactly because Justin Theroux looks like that that he is grossly undervalued.   Usually, if someone who looked like that was even just able to spell his own name, he would be fawned over.  But in the acting game, male beauty is rebuffed, and awards bodies tend to eschew acknowledgement if the male actor isn’t an everyman.

Part of the glory, ironically, of Theroux’s acting in HBO’s The Leftovers is that he so deeply inhabits the everyman, in the true sense of that term.  The trajectory for his character, Kevin, was of loving husband and father, trying to protect and save his family, as men do.  He couldn’t understand how to bring his family together, how to truly be vulnerable enough to connect.  And Theroux’s physical power was the perfect foil for his paralyzing inner fear...

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Friday
May262017

Cannes: "You Were Never Really Here" and Palme d'Or Predictions

PreviouslyDay 1Days 2-4, Days 5-6, Days 7-8, and Days 9-10
Fashion: French Divas & Kidmanifestations 1, 23

Joaquin Phoenix, an antihero saving girls from sex slavery, in Lynne Ramsay's thriller "You Were Never Really Here"

Cannes wraps up Sunday with the closing ceremony which means the Palme d'Or! The last competition film to premiere (tomorrow officially is Lynne Ramsay's You Were Never Really Here  and as is sometimes the case in the more dramatic Cannes festivals, many critics are proclaiming that the festival saved the best for last. Variety's Guy Lodge loved it calling it a "a stunning return," The Guardian compares it to Taxi Driver in its "nightmarish psychological drama

Does that mean it will win the Palme d'Or or that Joaquin Phoenix has Best Actor wrapped up? Not really. It's foolish with Cannes to ever assume you know what will win but let's make some tentative predictions for fun after the jump shall we? 

Click to read more ...

Thursday
May182017

Stage Door: "Six Degrees of Separation" Revived

Stage Door bringing you intermittent theater reviews when we manage to get there. Here's Nathaniel R

It's so basic to binge plays during Tony season as opposed to a more sensible and committed once-a-month diet of live theater. Alas, just as the more familiar mainstream obsession of the Oscar circus encourages studios to backload their releases to the last quarter of the year, most of the "big" theater shows open as late as they can for Tony consideration. This makes April and May a madhouse of theater-going for those who care about such things. Because most of the musicals are too expensive, I've been catching up with the plays. We've already covered The Little Foxes (a must see) and the Pulitzer-winning economic tragedy Sweat. So let's talk Six Degrees of Separation nominated for 2 Tonys: Best Revival of a Play and Best Leading Actor (Corey Hawkins).

"Chaos, control. Chaos, control. You like, you like?"

That's Stockard Channing's most sweetly funny line reading (among thousands of exquisite ones) in the 1993 movie adaptation of this stage classic. That was also, roughly, my reaction to the Broadway revival with Allison Janney, John Benjamin Hickey, and Corey Hawkins (Straight Outta Compton), taking over the roles Channing, Donald Sutherland, and Will Smith played onscreen...

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