Tag Archives: Javier Bardem

Vicky Christina Barcelona

About a month late, I thought I’d lend a thought to Woody Allen’s relatively new film, Vicky Christina Barcelona. The film, so obviously an Allen film, characterized by an underlying darkness and undefinable sense of longing, or loss, stars Scarlett Johansson (Match Point, Lost in Translation), Penelope Cruz (Volver, Vanilla Sky), and Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men). Rebecca Hall (The Prestige) also stars, and, in my opinion, becomes the reason for the film’s semi-disheartening tone.

Vicky (Hall) and Christina (Johansson) are two friends venturing to Spain for very different reasons; Vicky for a romantic distraction from a failed love life – a constant need/want for reality’s drama – and inspiration for a newly-aquired love of photography, and Christina for research, as well as a pre-marriage getaway. Their venture through Barcelona leads them to an introduction to Juan Antonio (Bardem), an artist and a man that goes too far beyond any preconceived notion of a Spanish Don Juan, and soon, both girls, admittedly or not, are enamored by him. Juan Antonio’s past becomes the present when his ex-wife, Maria Alena (Cruz), comes back into his life. Cruz is, without a doubt, the comedic touch to this Allen movie, and coupled with intensities from all other actors, creates a beautiful film deserving the reputation Allen is now carrying. The film is narrated, which distances audiences from the story a bit, but provides a humorous story-telling to the blatantly obvious.

I’d see it again, and probably again. A-

Advertisements

Trailer for new Woody Allen film

Here’s the trailer for Vicky Cristina Barcelona, the new Woody Allen film starring Javier Bardem, Scarlett Johansson, and Penelope Cruz.  It’s said to be his best in many years, and his most visually impressive yet:


What’s Next for the Coen Brothers?

no_country_for_old_men-poster.jpg

Flying high after the huge success of No Country for Old Men, the Coen brothers, who have also written and directed films such as Fargo, Raising Arizona, and The Big Lebowski, have 4, yes FOUR, new films on the way.

First we’ll get Burn After Reading, which the duo has already completed. It’ll be released this September and stars Brad Pitt, George Clooney, and John Malkovich. In Burn After Reading, Malkovich will play an ousted CIA official whose memoirs accidentally fall into the hands of two unwise D.C. gym employees (Pitt & Clooney) who intend to exploit their find.

In 2009, the Coens will release A Serious Man, which is said to be a dark comedy about a Jewish college professor. A Serious Man will be set in 1960’s Minnesota.

In 2010, the literary adaptation The Yiddish Policeman’s Union will be released. This will be the 4th film adaptation of a Michael Chabon novel. The premise is as follows:

“Set in an alternate America where Jews have taken refuge in an Alaskan district after the collapse of Israel in 1948, The Yiddish Policemen’s Union is a noir which follows detective Meyer Landsman as he attempts solving a murder, untangling a conspiracy, and generally reassembling his shambled life.”

003_obrothero-brother-where-art-thou-posters.jpg

THEN, after all that, we’ll get yet another Coen brothers film in 2011, assuming all goes to plan. This one’s untitled as of now, but the Coens have released this statement regarding the project:

“We’ve written a western with a lot of violence in it. There’s scalping and hanging … it’s good. Indians torturing people with ants, cutting their eyelids off. It’s a proper western, a real western, set in the 1870s. It’s got a scene that no one will ever forget because of one particular chicken.”

Some sources are reporting the project to be a “spaghetti western,” however this is of course false, as a true spaghetti western must be produced by an Italian studio.

In addition to the 4 films listed above, the Coen brothers also have two projects “on the backburner.” They are Hail Caesar, which is a comedy about a 1920’s theatrical troupe’s attempt to stage Julius Caesar, and an adaptation of James Dickey’s novel To the White Sea. No word on when, or if, these films will ever be completed, but here’s hoping for releases in 2012 and 2013, just after the Coen’s western.

The Coen brothers have always been prolific, but this is pretty extaordinary, especially considering the Coens write all their screenplays. Personally, I’m most excited for the upcoming western, but all 4 projects sound pretty wonderful.


The First Annual Owl Pellets Film Awards

THE FIRST ANNUAL OWL PELLETS FILM AWARDS

And the winners are…

BEST MALE ACTOR (SUPPORTING)

Third Place: Philip Seymour Hoffman (Charlie Wilson’s war)

Second Place: Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men)

BEST FEMALE ACTOR (SUPPORTING)

Third Place: Kelly MacDonald (No Country for Old Men)

Second Place: Cate Blanchett (I’m Not There)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: Marketa Irglova (Once)

BEST USE OF MUSIC

Third Place: Sweeney Todd (Stephen Sondheim)

Second Place: Once (Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: There Will Be Blood (Jonny Greenwood)

BEST WRITER

Third Place: Wes Anderson (The Darjeeling Limited)

Second Place: Joel & Ethan Coen (No Country for Old Men)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood)

BEST MALE ACTOR

Third Place: Johnny Depp (Sweeney Todd)

Second Place: Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood)

BEST FEMALE ACTOR

Third Place: Zoe Bell (Death Proof)

Second Place: Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: Helena Bonham-Carter (Sweeney Todd)

BEST ENSEMBLE

Third Place: Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead (Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ethan Hawke, Albert Finney, Marisa Tomei)

Second Place: Superbad (Jonah Hill, Michael Cera, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Seth Rogen, Bill Hader)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: Sweeney Todd (Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham-Carter, Alan Rickman, Timothy Spall, Sacha Baren Cohen, Ed Sanders)

BEST DIRECTOR

Third Place: Joel & Ethan Coen (No Country for Old Men)

Second Place: Tim Burton (Sweeney Todd)

And The Owl Pellet goes to: Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood)

BEST FILM

Third Place: Sweeney Todd

Second Place: No Country for Old Men

And The Owl Pellet goes to: There Will Be Blood

awards.jpg