Morning Pour is your daily stop for quick links, news commentary and trend-spotting. Here are your ten topics for November 9, 2011:
1. "J.Edgar" Parody Lampoons Leonardo DiCaprio's Oscar Dreams
Is it time that the Academy honor Leonardo DiCaprio for his long career and past Oscar losses with a Best Actor trophy this year? Is "J.Edgar," which opens today in limited release, nothing but bait for this recognition? His performance has been called everything from lacking in depth and heft to beyond exceptional. The following Funny or Die parody video "L. DiCaprio," which does well to use perfectly dubbed voice impersonation rather than full on reenactments, is a perfect encompassment of the film and the season and arrives at a perfect time. Kudos to writer/editor PatB. Also, "yes, Judi Dench," just because this line made me laugh out loud for some reason. [via Movies.com]
2. Werner Herzog would direct "Bill and Ted 3"
First Herzog signs on to play a villain in a Tom Cruise action movie, and now Movieweb has him on the record saying he'd direct the third "Bill and Ted" movie "if it is a good screenplay." Obviously it's a ludicrous idea to speculate about, yet the fact the "Into the Abyss" director hasn't seen the first two movies is worth noting. He hadn't seen "Bad Lieutenant" before remaking it, either (or since, I believe). Anyway, if not this than he should do some kind of time travel movie. Other than "Cave of Forgotten Dreams," that is.
3. Batman vs. The Riddler
Another video from the guys at Front Page Films, who also did the parody of Batman choosing his voice included here yesterday. I'm only including this earlier one because I'm still getting a hilarious Steve Little vibe from this riddle-stumped Caped Crusader. And the guy playing The Riddler makes me think that Louis C.K. should be a comedic movie villain.
4. Is there a male equivalent to the Manic Pixie Dream Girl?
Elizabeth Rappe asks the question at Film.com and then wonders between two types. Is it the "Affable Dork" (or "la homme fatale") typically opposite the MPDG who "exists to bring a girl down to reality"? I think it's this second option if there must be some classification:
Bill Murray in Lost in Translation or Michael Douglas in Wonder Boys. By denying or breaking the younger woman’s heart, they improve her, and thus send her off into a fully-realized career and romance. It would be sort of bitterly appropriate that the male equivalent is less magically attractive and adorable, and is instead cold and fatherly, since women are forever too weak to know their own selves.
5. David Bordwell on Joe Dante's "Twilight Zone: The Movie" segment
I sure wish I could have attended the Joe Dante retrospective in Madison last week. He was one of my favorites as a kid, probably via the Looney Tunes influences. Maybe when the Museum of the Moving Image is done with Henson they can bring in Dante (at least BAMCinematek's upcoming puppets series includes both Muppets and "Gremlins 2: The New Batch"). I'm stunned that of all the works shown, David Bordwell has decided to concentrate on the director's short from the "Twilight Zone" omnibus film. It was always the most memorable for me, and also the most nightmare-inducing. Here's a great Eisenstein-referencing appreciation:
The TV is incessantly on. The cartoons running in the background supply whizzes, boinks, and thuds that jarringly punctuate the conversation between puzzled teacher Helen Foley and the family that Anthony holds in his magical grip. “This is Helen,” says Anthony, introducing her to Uncle Walt and his sister, as we hear a smash from the TV set. The cartoon tracks comment on the action too. As the family settle down in front of the tube, the elders dote on Helen and we hear a Stalling rendition of “Ain’t She Sweet?” Dinner is served to the tune of “The Teddy Bears’ Picnic.” And when Helen discovers her burger has been slathered with peanut butter, the visceral image is underscored by warbling winds that rise when she lifts the bun. Eisenstein, for reasons given here, would have loved the moment. The whole sequence plays out as live-action animation, with naturalistic dialogue and effects given a creepy overlay by the cartoon track. Is Helen Foley’s last name part of the gag?
6. Mike Tyson as Herman Cain
I wish that was the whole video. The rest are okay, but nothing's better than Mike Tyson portraying famous people, especially ones crazier than him.
7. Snow White was real
All those new film versions of "Snow White" in the works? They could probably include the "Based on a true story" pitch since the old Grimm fairy tale is thought to be inspired by a real German woman. The only problem is there's disagreement over which real woman. Was she Margarete von Waldeck, who hung out with child miners, or was she Maria Sophia Margaretha Catharina von Erthal, who lived in a Disney-esque castle in Lohr (now a museum)? Mental_floss examines the two.
8. Movie reenactments with a baby
Many cinephiles are loving the new blog Arthur Recreates Scenes from Classic Movies, which feature the eponymous baby in photos reenacting famous scenes from "The Seventh Seal" (above), "The Godfather," "The Shawshank Redemption," "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" and more. I now have another reason to have a kid, even if the idea's been done already. [via Criterion Corner]
9. "Bring It On" the Musical
Want to see a bunch of cheerleaders singing and dancing on Broadway? Sorry, "But I'm a Cheerleader" isn't returning to the stage for the big time. But the latest movie turned musical is "Bring It On," which debuts in Los Angeles this Friday before going on a national tour. Not Broadway just yet, but after Lestat and Spider-Man have made it there, why not something else associated with a Kirsten Dunst film? By the way, I can't wait for the "Melancholia" musical. As for "Bring It On," I doubt my favorite part, the intimately silent tooth-brushing scene, will translate well to the theatre.
10. Brett Ratner resigns as producer of the Oscars
Who hasn't heard by now? If you want to look back at the outcry and some debate that led to Brett Ranter's public resignation letter, I rounded up calls for his firing here Monday night and then continued The Converation at Movies.com yesterday. Here's the popular video of "Happy Endings" actor Adam Pally spoofing Ratner's apology: