Posts Tagged ‘Christian Bale’

Two Blondes Countdown to the Oscars: Best Supporting Actor

February 21, 2011

The Nominees:

Christian Bale The Fighter

John Hawkes Winter’s Bone

Jeremy Renner The Town

Mark Ruffalo The Kids Are All Right

Geoffrey Rush The King’s Speech

WHO WE THINK WILL WIN

Jessica:  Geoffrey Rush The King’s Speech

Alison:  Geoffrey Rush The King’s Speech

WHO WE WANT TO WIN

Jessica:  I have seen all of these movies and think each of these men gave great performances, truly.  If I had to pick a favorite, I guess it would be Jeremy Renner in The Town (I had to sit and think about that for about 10 minutes before making a decision).  My first instinct was to pick Christian Bale.  He was great in The Fighter, but in the end, I opted for Mr. Renner.  He was so believable as the thuggish best friend and bank robbing boss that I think I just kind of assumed that was close to what Jeremy Renner, himself, must be like.  Then I remembered that I’ve seen him in interviews where he seems perfectly charming and not at all like he might have kidnapped someone.  If you haven’t seen The Town, rent it.  It’s the most underrated film of the year.

Alison:  My first reaction was “Oh definitely Christian Bale in The Fighter.” He disappeared into that role, like he does with pretty much every role. He’s got to be one of the most intense and dedicated actors in Hollywood. But then my memory started working (my brain is slow sometimes) and I remembered watching Geoffrey Rush’s excellent performance in The King’s Speech. And then I couldn’t decide, so I’m calling a tie, because I really loved both performances equally.

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Two Blondes Go to a Movie: Public Enemies

July 13, 2009

Today we are featuring a guest ‘blonde,’ Amy Rosenbloom, and her review of Public Enemies.

AMY SAYS:

While cat-sitting for my cousin, my boyfriend and I had the itch to see a movie at the nearby, very cheap Highland Theaters. Our choices were Transformers 2: Revenge of the Nausea-Inducing Dialogue, The Proposal (of a Predictable Rom-Com Plotline), and Public Enemies. A 1930’s shoot-‘em-up with Johnny Depp, Christian Bale, and Marion Cotillard based on the true story of a larger-than-life gangster? What’s not to like?

You’d be surprised.

I tried to like this movie. I really did. It’s fun to watch Johnny Depp breeze through bank robberies and prison breaks with more confidence than you could shake a stick (or shoot a Tommy gun) at. It’s fun to see Christian Bale lose himself in the persona of a freshly minted FBI agent who just wants to do what’s right. And it’s fun to watch Marion Cotillard fall in love with John Dillinger, the anti-hero of the Great Depression, and the promise of both sweeping romance and extravagant riches.

But, eh.

About an hour in, I was bored. Some scenes are too long and/or unnecessary. I didn’t even know who some people were supposed to be. Baby Face Nelson shows up, and no one acknowledges who he is until two or three scenes later. Giovanni Ribisi appears as…some guy with glasses? I guess?

And as picky film/TV nerds, my boyfriend and I giggled at the harsh lighting during the night scenes (the many, many night scenes):

Me: I didn’t know they had 1Ks in the woods back then.

Boyfriend: Eh, maybe 5Ks with filters to cut them down.

End nerdy snark.

There is also an epic shootout in the woods outside John Dillinger’s Wisconsin log cabin hideout, but I couldn’t tell who was shot. (By the way, I found out the shootout was in Wisconsin from Wikipedia because the movie doesn’t provide nearly enough historical context.) For a moment, a guy with Dillinger’s haircut falls down from a gunshot wound, and the only reason I knew it wasn’t Dillinger was that the movie had about an hour to go. The writers wouldn’t kill him off that early; there’s no way.

Another big aspect of the movie I didn’t like was that I didn’t know if I was supposed to root for the FBI or against them. They are just kind of…there. At times, they appear to be virtuous men who desire to deliver justice, and at others, they are simply bumbling oafs who make the bad guys look downright intelligent. Should I cheer for the dashing bad guy, even though the good guys win in the end? (Sorry for the slight spoiler, but you could find that out just by Googling Dillinger*.) If I don’t know who the hero is, how am I supposed to invest my emotions in this movie?

That being said, every negative review of this movie has put in a good word about Michael Mann, since he is capable of producing/directing/writing better than this. I’m adding my review to that list.

LA Viewers: You can definitely wait until this shows up on HBO or basic cable, but if you need to go to a movie theater right now and can’t find a proper alternative to Transformers 2: Revenge of Shia The Beef, then find a super cheap theater like Highland Theaters in Highland Park, The Vista in Silver Lake, or The Los Feliz 3 in…Los Feliz.

Translation for non-LA viewers: Same deal, only I’m sure you won’t have as much difficulty finding a cheap movie theater.

*Googling Dillinger is my new quirky indie flick about a girl who, after constantly surfing the web in search of stories about her hero, John Dillinger, is surprised to find him in her bedroom after a freak electrical storm brings him out of the 1930s and into the 21st century. Coming to a theater near you in 2012.

**Here is the lovely, Ms. Rosenbloom.  Note, she is not an actual blonde, but she does like movies.

Amy Rosenbloom

Amy Rosenbloom

Two Blondes Go To A Movie: The Dark Knight

September 6, 2008

Two blondes review movies and ramble a lot about themselves.

JESSICA SAYS:

Warning:  This review is going to sound like Andy Rooney, but…

Has anyone else noticed that movies have gotten really, really loud in the last couple of years?  Alison and I went to a double feature yesterday, Pineapple Express and The Dark Knight.  I was fine in Pineapple Express, but man, The Dark Knight was literally painful.  I had to plug my ears during any action sequence (which is approx. 96% of the movie).  Even after plugging my ears, I left the theatre slightly shouting everything I said.  I had the same problem a couple of years ago at one of the Bourne movies.  Is it just me?

You know it’s bad when you walk into Forever 21 and think, “Yes, this music seems to be playing at a reasonable volume,” as I did after the movies.  On a related note, on the way into the movie I told Alison I had made my first purchase at Forever 21 just a couple days prior.  She asked why that was my first.  Me:  “Because that store gives me an aneurysm.  The music is too loud, it’s messy, and there are teenagers everywhere.”  Her:  “OK, grandma.”  So maybe it is just me.

I recommend seeing this movie in the theatre, but bring industrial-strength earplugs and don’t sit on the aisle under a speaker.

ALISON SAYS:

As someone who wanted to be a super hero, but was deterred by bad arches and a fear of heights, it was fun to live the life of one for 150 minutes. I saw The Dark Knight twice in the theater and both times thought it was awesome. During my second viewing, I felt bad for Jessica as she held her right ear and winced at the impressive surround sound provided by Pacific 15 at the Grove. But despite her discomfort, I loved the music, explosions, action and awesomeness.

However, in the land of two blondes, there is no perfect review. I was really distracted by Two Face. Rather than looking like a guy who’d been burned, he looks like half a zombie. Also, in any moments where I lost my suspension of disbelief, I was a little thrown by the way Batman talked. It was so guttural, almost to the point of being silly. I think this YouTube video sums it up perfectly: 

LA Viewers: This movie is worth paying full price at Arclight.
Translation for non-LA Natives: Go to the theater to see this movie, but if you’re concerned with hearing loss, don’t sit near the speakers.