Nothing Is Invisible

……….Cultural Kaleidoscopy………..

Posts Tagged ‘Academy Awards’

* The Constant Gardener – Starring Ralph Fiennes & Rachel Weisz

Posted by the editors on Tuesday, 31 January 2012

The Constant Gardener (2005) Directed by Fernando Meirelles ( City of God (2002)), starring Ralph Fiennes  (The English Patient (1996)) and  Rachel Weisz (The Lovely Bones (2009), The Bourne Legacy (2012, filming)), with Danny Huston (Children of Men (2006))Bill Nighy (Love Actually (2003), Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007)) and others.  This outstanding, award-winning dramatic thriller, a condemnation of corruption in government and the pharmaceutical industry, follows a soft-spoken and sensitive low level British diplomat, Justin Quayle, played to perfection by Ralph Fiennes, as he investigates the circumstances surrounding his wife’s death.  Quayle’s wife, Tessa, a passionate and, at times, overbearing activist, is portrayed by an excellent Rachel Weisz, who won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her efforts.  Danny Huston, son of legendary director John Huston and half-brother of actress Anjelica Huston, is also very good as Justin Quayle’s (Fiennes) deceitful immediate supervisor, as is Bill Nighy, as the corrupt head of the Africa Desk for the British Foreign Office.  Magnificently filmed, from the vast and spectacular plains of Africa, to the squalor of the slums of Nairobi, Kenya, to the intimacy of a loving couple with an excellent screenplay by Jeffrey Caine based on the eponymous novel by John le Carré, and superb music by Alberto Iglesias, The Constant Gardener is, in both a large scale and personal manner, a critical look at Western liberal conscience, ethical and moral responsibility, personal virtue, courage and devotion, as well as being a finely honed, complex adult thriller.  Definitely a must-see film. (PR)

See our posts of the films Sunshine, starring both Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Weisz, and Spider, starring Ralph Fiennes, directed by David Cronenberg.

We recommend that you buy your DVDs.  Have a great personal film library..  Here are links to (Amazon Instant Video, DVDs and Blu-ray Disks, in that order, when available):

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The Wolfman – Starring Benicio del Toro & Anthony Hopkins

Posted by the editors on Friday, 20 January 2012

The Wolfman (2010) Directed by Joe Johnston (Jumanji (1995), Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)), starring  Benicio del Toro (21 Grams (2003), Che (2008))Anthony Hopkins (The Silence of the Lambs (1991), The Remains of the Day (1993), Meet Joe Black (1998))Emily Blunt (The Devil Wears Prada (2006), The Adjustment Bureau (2011)) and Hugo Weaving (The Matrix (1999), The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)), with Geraldine Chaplin.  In this remake of the 1941 Lon Chaney classic The Wolfman, Benicio del Toro, all gloomy sorrow, portrays an actor, who, when investigating his brother’s brutal death, is bitten by a dreadful beast, a werewolf, of course, who has been marauding around the wonderfully gothic dark and foggy moors.  In his turn, naturally enough, del Toro himself becomes a werewolf and rampages through the countryside, and London, wreaking havoc.  Anthony Hopkins, portraying del Toro’s father, is coldly malevolent and himself a werewolf as well.  The make-up, as one might expect, plays a crucial role, and in fact won the Academy Award for Best Makeup, though some may prefer the more snout-y appearance of the werewolf in the film An American Werewolf in London directed by John Landis, which also won an Academy Award for Outstanding Achievement in Makeup.  Benicio del Toro, does make a rather good wolfman, though, frankly, his portrayal of the famous stage actor, in a production of Hamlet, no less, is honestly cringe-worthy, and his accent throughout the film is shaky at best.  Nevertheless, The Wolfman will most likely please those who enjoy gothic horror. (PR)

See our posts on the films Traffic and The Pledge, both with Benicio del Toro.

We recommend that you buy your DVDs and Blu-ray Disks.  Have a great personal film library..  Here are links to (Amazon Instant Video, DVDs, and Blu-ray Disks, in that order, when available):

top image: Wikipedia

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Traffic – Directed by Steven Soderbergh, Starring Benicio del Toro, Michael Douglas (Oscars for Best Director, Best Supporting Actor and more)

Posted by the editors on Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Traffic (2000)   Directed by Steven Soderbergh (Erin Brockovich (2000), Solaris (2002), The Informant! (2009) and many others), starring Benicio del Toro, Michael Douglas, Don Cheadle, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Dennis Quaid, and others.  Traffic, a multi-Oscar-winning crime drama about the drug trade in Mexico and the U.S. in which multiple interconnected story lines are woven together is a tension-filled tour de force characterised by the excellent directing of Soderbergh, some excellent writing, by Stephen Gaghan, and superb, understated acting on the part of Benicio del Toro.  The four stories which make up the film consist of 1)in Tijuana, Mexico, the struggle between the corrupt army, the federal police and two important drug cartels, in which del Toro excels; 2)in Washington, D.C. and elsewhere, the story of a newly-nominated U.S. “Drug Czar” with a 16-year old addict daughter; 3)in San Diego, California, the efforts of the DEA (U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration) to arrest and prosecute a major drug trafficker and protect a key witness in his drug trial and, 4)also in San Diego, the efforts on the part of the wife of the arrested trafficker to maintain their business.  The ensemble of the cast is really quite good: Michael Douglas and Amy Irving in the Washington “Drug Czar” story-line; Don Cheadle and Luis Guzmán in the DEA story-line; Catherine Zeta-Jones and Dennis Quaid in the San Diego drug trafficker story-line, and, of course Benicio del Toro in the Mexican story-line.  Soderbergh not only directed the film, but also shot it, with distinctive color-based atmospheres for each story-line.  The end result is an excellent, unsentimental drama, full of tension, that is a must-see. (PR)

Traffic won the following Academy AwardsBest DirectorBest Supporting Actor (del Toro), Best Film Editing (Stephen Mirrione), and Best Adapted Screenplay; it was also nominated for Best Picture, but lost to Gladiator, by Ridley Scott.  Traffic, and Benicio del Toro won numerous other awards, as well.

See our posts on the films Syriana, The Informant! and Solaris, directed by Steven Soderbergh, and also the films, The Pledge, with Benicio del Toro, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps and The Game, starring Michael Douglas, and Vantage Point, starring Dennis Quaid.

We recommend that you buy your DVDs and Blu-ray Disks.  Have a great personal film library…  Here are links to (Amazon Instant Video, DVDs and Blu-ray Disks, in that order, when available):

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State of Play

Posted by the editors on Sunday, 2 October 2011

State of Play (2009)(DVD)  Directed by Kevin Macdonald (One Day in September (2000), The Last King of Scotland (2006)), starring Russell Crowe (Academy Award for Best Actor for Gladiator in 2001, A Beautiful Mind  (2001), American Gangster (2007))Ben Affleck (Good Will Hunting (1997), Pearl Harbor (2001))Rachel McAdams (Midnight in Paris (2011))Helen Mirren (Elizabeth I (2005), Arthur (2011))Jason Bateman (Juno (2007), Hancock (2008))Robin Wright Penn (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011, to be released)) and others.  State of Play, a relatively believable political thriller based on a BBC TV mini-series, offers Crowe as an old-hand, old-school, altruistic journalist, and Affleck as a, at least initially, seemingly altruistic Congressman.  Easily watchable, political, yes, thriller, well, relatively speaking…  Initially cast with Brad Pitt and Edward Norton in the starring roles. (PR)

We recommend that you buy your DVDs and Blu-ray disks.  Have a wonderful personal film library..

top image: Wikipedia

Posted in Blu-ray Disks, DVDs, film, Film Reviews, Movies, Nothing Is Invisible, nothingisinvisible | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

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