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Entries in Fences (25)

Wednesday
Mar152017

Fences & Elle now on DVD and Blu-Ray

By the end of April nearly all the Oscar's favorite 2016 films will be available on Blu-Ray and DVD (La La Land is the caboose on April 25th) in case you accidentally missed any. And if you purchase them from Amazon, by clicking over from TFE we get a teensy tiny cut as an Amazon affiliate (hint hint). 

Last Week's Fresh Batch
The Eyes of My Mother - Daniel recently paid tribute to this indie horror film's award winning production design film's
Jackie - We've sung its praises plenty and interviewed Pablo Larraín, too
Moana - a favorite among the podcast team

Brand New This Week
Elle - Verhoeven and Huppert's provocative collaboration had long legs at the arthouse and we called that Oscar nomination super early. Yay
Fences - Denzel & Viola reprising their Tony winning roles in this American classic of a black family in the 1950s from August Wilson's Pittsburgh cycle. The other nine will supposedly be filmed, too, albeit for TV rather than as theatrical features. Which is a pity since Fences proved the audience is there
Collateral Beauty - I swear Chris is obsessed with this film's badness. Will it one day be a camp classic?
Passengers -Daniel looked at its Oscar nominated production design. It did look like a million dollars despite its narrative problems.

How do you think these films will age? Will you be adding any to your collection?

Monday
Feb272017

Viola, the Speech of The Night

Chris here. That shockeroo at the end of the night wasn’t the evening’s only fireworks. But the kind of awe I’m thinking recalling is the kind that we watch the Oscars for: the acceptance speeches. Viola Davis’s in particular.

Viola’s Fences win was already such a forgone conclusion (as you may have heard during our Smackdown) that the lead-up to her category felt the tiniest bit underwhelming, in a way that it mightn’t have been if *ahem* she’d been nominated in Lead. But forgive me, readers, for momentarily losing sight that the best part of the Oscars has everything to do with after the name is called: the speech. Hers was the speech we were waiting for, both for the actress herself and as people who relish in awards speeches.

And was it ever one for the ages, sober and uplifting while recalling the themes that led to her winning performance. “You know, there’s one place that all the people with the greatest potential are gathered... the graveyard.” It’s the candid performer telling us what made them an artist, but also demanding representation for the unheard. For a night that ended up championing previously untold stories and dreams both fulfilled and unfilled, consider her speech the night’s gorgeous thesis.

A master class in gratitude and passion. Can we give her another Oscar? No, I mean, like now, today.

Sunday
Feb192017

Podcast: Smackdown Companion Discussion

Nathaniel welcomes fellow team members Murtada, Chris, and Abstew to discuss this year's Supporting Actress race. It's a verbal companion piece to the "Smackdown" we just held

Index (42 minutes)
Longform discussion of this year's supporting actress contenders Nicole Kidman, Viola Davis, Michelle Williams, Naomie Harris, Octavia Spencer, their futures, their films. What, if anything new, did they reveal to us this year and what would we like to see next from them?

You can listen to the podcast here at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes. Continue the conversations in the comments, won't you? 

Smackdown Companion - 2016 Supporting Actress

Saturday
Feb182017

Smackdown '16: Nicole, Viola, Michelle, Naomie, Octavia

Presenting the Supporting Actresses of '16. This year's slate of nominees features a selfless adoptive mother, a doting but suddenly resentful wife, a woman whose tragic past has suddenly resurfaced, a savvvy mother hen and supervisor struggling to gain respect, and an addict who makes her sensitive son's life a nightmare of instability.

THE NOMINEES 

One long-time-coming breakthrough for an exciting actress (Get it Naomie Harris), two Oscar winners elevating their films with warmth and precision (Kidman & Spencer), and two Oscar darlings who arguably should have won already attacking tragic material (Williams and Davis). Who will be triumphant in the smackdown?

THIS MONTH'S PANELISTS

Though we usually arrange for special guests including actors, writers, and film critics, for the first Smackdown of the new season, we opted to do it all 'in house' with only TFE crew just to get the series back up and running: Nathaniel, Abstew, Chris, and Murtada (you can read about the team here) are discussing the nominees. And now it's time for the main event... 

2016
SUPPORTING ACTRESS SMACKDOWN 

Click to read more ...

Friday
Feb172017

Introducing... the Supporting Actress Nominees of 2016

The new Smackdown season is upon us. Before we get to the main event, which will be in a day or two depending on when we finalize it, let's look at the ways in which even movie introduces the characters that will then go on to help their supporting actresses win a nomination. We'll take them in the order in which they show up in their movies.

After the jump you can also vote to determine the reader ranking of the contenders. You know you want to do it.  Meet...

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Feb162017

10 Days Until Oscar. Stage to Screen Roles 

Paul Lukas and Bette Davis in "Watch on the Rhine"

It's ten days until Oscar and soon this post may be obsolete! To date, unless I've miscounted, ten actors have won the leading Oscar for reprising a role they won praise for first on the Broadway stage. Soon there could be 11 depending on how well Denzel Washington fares on Oscar night for Fences

ACTORS WHO WON LEAD OSCARS REPRISING THEIR BROADWAY ROLES
They are...

• George Arliss for Disraeli (1929/30)
Arliss had played this role in the Broadway production in 1911

• Paul Lukas for Watch on the Rhine (1943)
He previously played this role from 1941 through early 1942 on Broadway -- the transfer to the screen was mighty quick! 

• Jose Ferrer for Cyrano de Bergerac (1950)
He won the Tony for this iconic role in 1947. Later in 1990 Gerard Depardieu would also be nominated for playing the same role -- and Steve Martin arguably should have been for Roxanne -- but Depardieu didn't win...

Click to read more ...