Posts Tagged ‘Meryl Streep’

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The Homesman (Tommy Lee Jones, 2014)

November 23, 2014

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Set during the pioneer era, The Homesman subverts the usual trajectory of westerns set in this time by instead focusing on a journey from what will eventually become Nebraska territory in the West to more Eastern Iowa, wherein defeat via the frontier is a primary concern, whether it be a defeat of the mind, body, soul, or all together. Director Tommy Lee Jones’s last theatrically released film was The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada (2005), a contemporary neo-western with shades of Sam Peckinpah in its flavour. The Homesman may have the set dressing of a more traditional, old-school genre entry, but this film, adapted from Glendon Swarthout’s 1988 novel, is much more offbeat than one might expect…

Click for the full review for Sound On Sight

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August: Osage County (John Wells, 2013)

January 25, 2014

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William Friedkin’s last two directorial efforts (Bug and Killer Joe) were Tracy Letts adaptations, and it’s a crying shame he didn’t helm the film version of August: Osage County, the playwright’s 2008 Pulitzer Prize winner about a brood coming home to rally around a cancer-stricken, monstrous matriarch (a scenery-gorging Streep) when their father (Shepard) vanishes. Tensions and dark revelations naturally come to the fore…

Click for the full review of The Skinny

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The Iron Lady (Phyllida Lloyd, 2011)

February 6, 2012

Originally written for Reel Time, now at Sound on Sight

Very early on in The Iron Lady, Margaret Thatcher’s father, in a flashback sequence, tells her to “never run with the crowd” and to go her own way. These words are typical of the “inspirational” biopic formula, and Phyllida Lloyd’s film embodies the style of that ilk of films, and most of their failings, in a presentation ill-fitting of its subject matter. Regardless of one’s political or personal views regarding Thatcher, there is a wealth of interesting material to be explored through a filmic representation of her life and career, either overtly positively or negatively, or in a balanced way that carefully considers the equal disdain and admiration she produces in people. The Iron Lady does not provide so much of a balanced view, more a completely middling, safe one. Read the rest of this entry ?