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Ten Meryl Streep Characters Through a Feminist Gaze

Meryl Streep is a cinema nonpareil whose acting talent and aura seemingly can't be explained. Nominated for a record 18 Academy Awards and winner of three, Streep is up for an Oscar on March 2 for her over-the-top portrayal of a grieving, drug-addicted mother in John Wells' movie version of Tracy Letts' Broadway smash "August: Osage County," although she's not pegged for another win. Critic Karina Longworth zeroes in on ten iconic Streep characters in her new book.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • March 2, 2014 5:11 PM
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'Lone Survivor' Stuns in Wide Release; 'Her' is Weak, 'August: Osage County' Strong

Led by "Lone Survivor," which grossed double its expected amount and looks to be a powerhouse for weeks to come, this weekend continued the steady business of the last few weeks. The Top 10 grossed about $114 million, up a tick from last year, when three new wide releases grossed better than all but one of this year's two new ones.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 12, 2014 1:21 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Friday Box Office: 'Lone Survivor' Does Huge Business, Expanded 'August: Osage County' OK, 'Her' Underwhelms

With a huge $14.4 million Friday debut for their "Lone Survivor" (Universal), director Peter Berg and actor/producer Mark Wahlberg get the last laugh after their qualifying runs failed to impress critics or receive any awards attention for the film about a lone soldier's fight to escape after a devastating attack on his Navy SEAL team.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 11, 2014 1:59 PM
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Arthouse Audit: 'Lone Survivor' and 'August: Osage County' Hold Well as 'Her' Widens

As usual, this first weekend of the new year offered few new movies. The market is packed with awards contenders in varying stages of release, with Oscar-qualifiers that opened last week dominating the action. Most of the awards pictures showed minor drops or even increases. Most of them won't break wide until next weekend's Golden Globes weekend and the Oscar nominations the following Thursday. For these films, their results on this crucial weekend reveal how much further they might go.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 5, 2014 3:57 PM
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Holiday Box Office Top Ten: 'Frozen' and 'Hobbit' Beat Out Newer Films, 'August: Osage County' Opens Flat

´╗┐The post-Christmas weekend can be one of the biggest of the year. And so it was. The top 10 grossed $171 million, up a healthy $17 million from 2012, which nudges the year's totals slightly ahead of 2012. However the strong weekend total comes despite an uneven performance from a wide variety of films. The top three slots went to "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" (at #1 on its third weekend), repeating "The Hobbit"'s three-weekend hold on the top spot, Thanksgiving holdover "Frozen," and "Anchorman 2" in its second weekend.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • December 29, 2013 1:38 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Review and Roundup: 'August: Osage County,' Starring Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts (VIDEO)

Crowdpleaser "August: Osage County" is a messy sprawling dysfunctional family drama that manages to wring some tears by its utterly satisfying conclusion.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 27, 2013 1:53 PM
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  • 1 Comment

What to See and What to Skip in Theaters Over the Long Holiday Weekend

With Christmas comes the big holiday movie weekend, and this year's is no exception with six awards contenders hitting theaters. On December 25, "The Wolf of Wall Street," "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty" and "Lone Survivor" go wide, while "The Invisible Woman" gets a limited release. Friday, "August: Osage County" and "Labor Day" hit NY/LA.
  • By Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio
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  • December 26, 2013 12:42 AM
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Why 'August: Osage County' Is Moving Off Its Christmas Opening

The Weinstein Co. confidently debuted John Wells and Tracy Lett's entertaining no-holds-barred R-rated film adaptation of the Pulitzer and Tony-winning stage hit "August: Osage County" at the Toronto Film Festival. Since then TWC has been working their SAG and Golden Globes magic, but the movie hasn't been getting love from year-end critics groups. (So far it's at 67% on Metacritic.) The Weinsteins already pulled back from a wide to a limited Christmas break and are switching things up again, moving those engagements back two days to December 27. Why?
  • By Anne Thompson and Tom Brueggemann
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  • December 17, 2013 4:35 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Open Up the Best Actress Oscar Race: Five Locks and Eight Must-See Performances

As usual, there are more viable men hustling after a Best Actor slot than women in contention for Best Actress. (My current predictions are here.) 'Twas ever thus, as the myopic film industry continues to chase the male demo and sequester "soft" relationship movies to the indie realm. Which means that many worthy films don't make it to the top of Academy voters' screener piles. How many film panels and Q & As have you seen with a row of men in suits and one woman in a frilly frock and impossibly high heels? Women in film are often a supporting afterthought.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • December 5, 2013 3:40 PM
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  • 9 Comments

Weinsteins Go New Media with 'August: Osage County' as Streep Limits Press Access, Pursue Awards Influencers in New Way (STREEP TALKS VIDEO)

What does the mighty New York Times do when there's no Meryl Streep interview? They do a write-around. Streep was a no-show at the "August: Osage County" unveiling and press conference at the Toronto Film Festival, allowing others to speak for her. (Early press reaction was mixed.) Instead she did the one thing press-shy folks must do: a press conference posted on YouTube (below). And the Weinstein know this movie's most enthusiastic supporters will be actors, so they are courting them in an innovative new way.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • November 27, 2013 1:10 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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