Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Specialty Box Office: 'Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck' Primes HBO Pump, Russell Crowe's 'Water Diviner' Is Spotty Specialty Box Office: 'Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck' Primes HBO Pump, Russell Crowe's 'Water Diviner' Is Spotty Friday Box Office: 'Adaline' Bumps 'Furious' for a Day; 'Kurt Cobain' Big in 3 Theaters Friday Box Office: 'Adaline' Bumps 'Furious' for a Day; 'Kurt Cobain' Big in 3 Theaters Remembering Film Critic Richard Corliss (1944-2015) Remembering Film Critic Richard Corliss (1944-2015) Cannes: Denis Villeneuve Says Drug War Film 'Sicario' Is "Very Dark" and "Quite Violent" Cannes: Denis Villeneuve Says Drug War Film 'Sicario' Is "Very Dark" and "Quite Violent" How Do You Solve a Problem Like Erika? Universal Hires Husband to Write 'Fifty Shades Darker' How Do You Solve a Problem Like Erika? Universal Hires Husband to Write 'Fifty Shades Darker' 'Age of Ultron' Director Joss Whedon on Self-Doubt and Why It's His 'Rio Bravo' 'Age of Ultron' Director Joss Whedon on Self-Doubt and Why It's His 'Rio Bravo' Watch: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Tina Fey, Patricia Arquette and Amy Schumer Hilariously Slam Hollywood Sexism (NSFW) Watch: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Tina Fey, Patricia Arquette and Amy Schumer Hilariously Slam Hollywood Sexism (NSFW) CinemaCon: How Tom Cruise Stole the Paramount Show CinemaCon: How Tom Cruise Stole the Paramount Show Meet the Director of 'Tangerines,' the 2015 Dark Horse Oscar Nominee You Missed (Exclusive Video) Meet the Director of 'Tangerines,' the 2015 Dark Horse Oscar Nominee You Missed (Exclusive Video) LA Film Fest Unveils Horror Slate, More World Premieres, Zoe Cassavetes Film LA Film Fest Unveils Horror Slate, More World Premieres, Zoe Cassavetes Film Cannes: Directors' Fortnight Lines Up Vet Auteurs and American Indies Cannes: Directors' Fortnight Lines Up Vet Auteurs and American Indies Joe Wright's 'Pan' Gets Fall Release Date: Good News or Bad News? Joe Wright's 'Pan' Gets Fall Release Date: Good News or Bad News? Seeing Ryan Gosling's 'Lost River' Through Composer Johnny Jewel's Eyes (STREAM SOUNDTRACK) Seeing Ryan Gosling's 'Lost River' Through Composer Johnny Jewel's Eyes (STREAM SOUNDTRACK) 3 Women Genre Directors Get SF Film Society Fellowships 3 Women Genre Directors Get SF Film Society Fellowships Here's Why Jon Stewart Quit 'The Daily Show' Here's Why Jon Stewart Quit 'The Daily Show' Watch: From Tarantino to Cronenberg, Great Directors Talk the Art and Anxiety of Filmmaking Watch: From Tarantino to Cronenberg, Great Directors Talk the Art and Anxiety of Filmmaking Specialty Box Office: 'True Story' and 'Child 44' Flop as 'Ex Machina' Lures Audiences Specialty Box Office: 'True Story' and 'Child 44' Flop as 'Ex Machina' Lures Audiences 10 Films Booed at Cannes That Every Cinephile Should See 10 Films Booed at Cannes That Every Cinephile Should See 5 Things You Didn't Know About Lars von Trier, Who's Going Back to Work 5 Things You Didn't Know About Lars von Trier, Who's Going Back to Work 7 Things to Learn from 'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner About Compelling Storytelling (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO) 7 Things to Learn from 'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner About Compelling Storytelling (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO)

Oscar Watch: Weinsteins Boast One Great Pick-Up, Two Great Performances in Weak Movies

Thompson on Hollywood By Anne Thompson and Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood November 29, 2011 at 3:53PM

It's Oscar season, and Harvey Weinstein is back. He's blogging at HuffPo about how his daughters consider him to be cool, and crowing about "The Artist" in the NYT. Lo and behold, Weinstein's canny pre-Cannes acquisition "The Artist" came out ahead at the New York Film Critics Circle with best picture and director and lead the Indie Spirit field with five nominations, while Meryl Streep won best actress for "The Iron Lady" from the NYFCC and Michelle Williams earned an Indie Spirit actress nod for "My Week with Marilyn."
0
My Week With Marilyn, Eddie Marilyn

It's Oscar season, and Harvey Weinstein is back. He's blogging at HuffPo about how his daughters consider him to be cool, and crowing about "The Artist" in the NYT.  Lo and behold, Weinstein's canny pre-Cannes acquisition "The Artist" came out ahead at the New York Film Critics Circle with best picture and director and lead the Indie Spirit field with five nominations, while Meryl Streep won best actress for "The Iron Lady" from the NYFCC and Michelle Williams earned an Indie Spirit actress nod for "My Week with Marilyn."

TWC welcomed the good news after critics divebombed their upcoming Madonna movie "W.E." at fall film festivals. Finally, Weinstein's editing tweaks on "The Iron Lady" and "My Week with Marilyn" managed to squeak both movies by as showcases for great actresses who rise above weak material. 

While Weinstein showed his girls "Roman Holiday," the inspiration for "Marilyn," comparing them and touting "Marilyn" as "a movie about making movies" reveals the film's flaws. Yes, Williams delivers a dynamic performance--so strong that we don't mind that she doesn't really resemble Monroe. But beyond riveting performances from her as well as Kenneth Branagh, Judi Dench and Eddie Redmayne, the Simon Curtis movie is schmaltzy and drenched in style and an overbearing score. This film about the love of making movies is schizophrenic, trying to achieve two things at once. Williams digs for the truth of what it meant to be Marilyn, while the film chases after the male fantasy of what it was like to sleep with Marilyn.

Phyllida Lloyd's"The Iron Lady," on the other hand, starts off strong as an inspirational feminist biopic about Margaret Thatcher's astonishing rise to power by sheer will, pluck and determination. She had to hold her own in Parliament, which is tough to do for a male politician, much less a female. But the movie's framing device of old Thatcher flashing back to young Thatcher wears thin; the structure becomes repetitive. Still, Streep shines and deserves all the accolades she gets for the latest in a long string of masterful and entertaining roles.

Finally, credit Weinstein for recognizing that "The Artist" would pop and knowing that he had two great actresses and performances, no matter how weak their vehicles were. (Richard Rushfield comments on the strong actor/weak movie trend here.)
 

This article is related to: Awards, Media, Oscars, Headliners, Hollywood, Genres


E-Mail Updates