House Logo
Explore categories +

Jeff Bridges (#110 of 18)

Oscar 2017 Winner Predictions Supporting Actor

Comments Comments (...)

Oscar 2017 Winner Predictions: Supporting Actor

A24

Oscar 2017 Winner Predictions: Supporting Actor

Back in December, around the time that the New York Film Critics Circle awarded its supporting actor prize to Moonlight’s Mahershala Ali, I had a conversation with a fellow member of the group that’s nagged at me ever since. It began with a question: Why Ali and not Trevante Rhodes? Critics seemed to be struggling to figure out how to reward all of Moonlight’s fine male performances, and they didn’t know what category Rhodes, Ashton Sanders, and Alex Hibbert belonged in. There was a sense that it was easiest to honor Ali because his character, Juan, like Janelle Monáe’s Teresa, has the closest thing to a constant in the life of Little, the boy who would become Chiron, the teenager who would become Black. I made a comparison to Patricia Arquette and what her character represents in Boyhood, and my colleague saw Ali performing a hat trick all the way to the Oscar stage.

Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2016 Knight of Cups and The Little Prince

Comments Comments (...)

Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2016: Knight of Cups and The Little Prince

Broad Green Pictures

Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2016: Knight of Cups and The Little Prince

Santa Barbara, with its picturesque movie palaces mere minutes from the beach, feels like an idyllic remnant of Old Hollywood. Fitting, then, that the centerpiece of this year’s Santa Barbara International Film Festival is Terrence Malick’s Knight of Cups, a parable about life’s transience posited as a rumination on Hollywood vainglory. Opening the film with a quotation from John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, Malick makes immediately clear that his relatively plotless narrative about a Hollywood screenwriter’s (Christian Bale) various romantic encounters is, in essence, about humanity’s efforts to regain a lost paradise from which we’ve all been expelled. As allegory, it works on both a literal and metaphorical level, one being meaningless without the other, as it’s precisely that tenuous connection between those two planes that represents Malick’s insistence that only there, in the interstices between the material and the spiritual, does life possess purpose and meaning.

Summer of ‘88: Tucker: The Man and His Dream

Comments Comments (...)

Summer of ‘88: <em>Tucker: The Man and His Dream</em>
Summer of ‘88: <em>Tucker: The Man and His Dream</em>

As you’ve no doubt noticed from the last few entries in this series, the waning days of 1988’s summer didn’t feel quite like the blockbuster season we now see extending all the way up to September. Opening on August 12, 1988, Francis Ford Coppola’s Tucker: The Man and His Dream was the kind of prestige project you’d more likely associate with awards season. For Coppola, it is among his most personal films, not only because it spent the longest time in gestation, but because it’s the closest the filmmaker has ever come to a confessional about the professional betrayals he’d contended with in his career, and the virtues and flaws of mounting a creative collaboration.

As Coppola recounts in the DVD commentary, he had been fascinated with Tucker ever since childhood, when his father had invested in the iconoclast’s auto company. Coppola had conceived of a Tucker musical biopic while still in film school at UCLA. His initial vision was as ambitious as Tucker’s was for his automobile. In the years after the Godfather films, Coppola had attained sufficient clout, enough to invite Gene Kelly to choreograph, and to offer the lead role to actors like Marlon Brando, Jack Nicholson, and even Burt Reynolds. Coppola wanted composer Leonard Bernstein (West Side Story) to score, with Singin’ in the Rain’s Betty Comden and Adolph Green writing the lyrics, and the collaboration produced at least one song. But this iteration of Tucker was ultimately scrapped after the failure of Coppola’s experimental One from the Heart (1982).

15 Famous Beautiful Creatures

Comments Comments (...)

15 Famous Beautiful Creatures
15 Famous Beautiful Creatures

This weekend, the young-adult freight train that kicked off with Twilight and kept a-rollin’ with The Hunger Games makes some room for Beautiful Creatures, a supernatural romance (natch) based on the book by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. Written and directed by Richard LaGravenese, who has some fine scripts under his belt, but is also responsible for the Hilary Swank stankers Freedom Writers and P.S. I Love You, the new film is indeed packed with handsome specimens, like Emmy Rossum, Jeremy Irons, and newcomer Alice Englert. The whole thing got us thinking about beautiful creatures of movies past—characters not quite human, but quite easy on the eyes.

Summer of ’87: Nadine: Love, Bullets and the Blondes of the Blue Bonnet

Comments Comments (...)

Summer of ‘87: <em>Nadine</em>: Love, Bullets and the Blondes of the Blue Bonnet
Summer of ‘87: <em>Nadine</em>: Love, Bullets and the Blondes of the Blue Bonnet

Robert Benton’s romance Nadine grabs your attention early. Beautiful nail salon employee Nadine (Kim Basinger) visits a somewhat shady photographer (Jerry Stiller) for whom she has posed. It’s 1955 in the only sane spot in Texas (Austin, that is), and Mrs. Hightower would like those pictures returned. They’re of the rather naughty variety, taken in the hopes that Hugh Hefner might notice and rocket her to stardom as a model. Now, Mrs. Hightower is having second thoughts—finding out you’re pregnant will do that to a gal—so she pleads to buy back the pictures. Ben Stiller’s dad agrees after some coaxing, but as he is retrieving the Hightower portfolio, he meets the unfriendly end of a butcher knife. Nadine takes the Hightower envelope and Hightails it outta there.

Film Histories Caroline Martel on Industry/Cinema

Comments Comments (...)

Film Histories: Caroline Martel on Industry/Cinema
Film Histories: Caroline Martel on Industry/Cinema

As you walk up the stairway at the Museum of the Moving Image, you’re greeted with a screen. On the left side is a black-and-white, silent, documentary image of young women dancing outdoors; on the right side is a tinted, silent, documentary image of a woman alone, twirling her dress. Perhaps curious, you approach, sit on a bench, and put on a pair of available headphones. The film on the right, Thomas A. Edison’s Annabelle Serpentine Dance, from 1894, you might recognize by face, if not by name. But playing on the left is a lesser-known work that holds equal entertainment and documentary value: the Bell Telephone Company of Canada’s 1920 film How Business Girls Keep Well.

Film canons and best-of lists are consistently built on a fiction, which is that the people building them have actually seen every movie ever made and can select the best accordingly. But a quick look at a list like the British magazine Sight & Sound’s recently released poll among more than 800 critics for the top 50 films of all time, which consists almost entirely of feature-length fiction works from the United States, Japan, Russia, and a few Western European countries, suggests this isn’t the case. The States alone have produced more than 500,000 “ephemeral films” (a term coined by American archivist Rick Prelinger, who also gave the statistic), short works created to advertise, promote, educate, and even entertain, and made both by corporations and by private individuals.

15 Famous Kids with Bikes

Comments Comments (...)

15 Famous Kids with Bikes
15 Famous Kids with Bikes

Pedaling its way into theaters this weekend (and surely a lot of hearts too) is the Dardenne Brothers’ beautiful and poetic The Kid with a Bike, whose red-shirted, redemption-bound lead, Thomas Doret, should be penciled onto your shortlist of Best Actors for 2012. They may not be as common as the boy-and-his-dog tale, but stories about kids and their bikes have long been hitting screens (as evidenced herein, the 1980s, in particular, had a bike-film free-for-all). So before you check out this new can’t-miss slice of cycling cinema, dig into our list, likely the only one to put Nicole Kidman in the company of Lori Loughlin.

15 Famous Movie Ledges

Comments Comments (...)

15 Famous Movie Ledges
15 Famous Movie Ledges

Hitting theaters this week is Man on a Ledge, a rather unsubtly titled thriller that stars Sam Worthington as a guy whose nowhere-left-to-turn predicament has him doing the old wave-down-at-the-masses bit. This isn’t the first time Worthington has flirted with dizzying precipices (his motion-captured doppelgänger braved the floating mountains of Pandora), and it certainly isn’t the first time Hollywood has tormented acrophobics. Movies have long been living on the edge, ever intent on serving up vicarious vertigo. For proof, here’s a list of 15 memorable movie ledges, from cliffs to rooftops to ominous subway platforms. Safety nets not included.

Summer of ‘86: 8 Million Ways to Die

Comments Comments (...)

Summer of ‘86: <em>8 Million Ways to Die</em>
Summer of ‘86: <em>8 Million Ways to Die</em>

Released (dumped) in the early part of the summer of 1986, 8 Million Ways to Die turned out to be the final film of one of the most endearing filmmakers from the New Hollywood era. While guys like Altman, Scorsese, Lucas, Spielberg and DePalma may have made more immediate and galvanizing films during the 1970s, Hal Ashby’s unbroken streak of human-scale masterpieces is pretty much unprecedented. Beginning with 1970’s The Landlord and ending with 1979’s Being There (with Harold and Maude, The Last Detail, Shampoo, Bound for Glory and Coming Home in-between), Ashby represented all that was good about socially conscious studio filmmaking. Then, almost overnight, he was out of fashion with Hollywood. In the 1980s, movies started to be packaged, and Ashby’s modest humanism in films like Second-Hand Hearts and The Slugger’s Wife failed to connect with audiences. His Iconoclast stature got him labeled as “trouble” in the ’80s. By the time Ashby got the job directing 8 Million Ways to Die it was almost seen as a last-ditch effort to make a hit—a fallen master’s attempt at redemption.

Oscar 2011 Winner Predictions: Actor in a Leading Role

Comments Comments (...)

Oscar 2011 Winner Predictions: Actor in a Leading Role
Oscar 2011 Winner Predictions: Actor in a Leading Role

This ought to be chapter three in a series of prediction entries no longer than the amount of time it takes the orchestra to cut off the acceptance speeches of the winners in the short film categories. If you don’t think Colin Firth is taking this one with, if anything, even more ease than Jeff Bridges coasted to his win last year, then you may as well put your money down on Hailee Steinfeld winning this category in a shock upset. Because she has as good a shot as at least two of the nominees that actually have a penis and roles nearly as central as hers. Not that being attached to a penis matters quite so much as being attached to a Best Picture nominee, especially one that recently all but swept the BAFTAs. A number of pundits have already pointed out, in comparing Firth’s easy win here against Annette Bening’s increasingly uphill battle to reach endgame over in Best Actress, how AMPAS continues to think that men age like fine wine and that women spoil faster than leaky, raw chicken breast tenders in a Styrofoam tray. Firth’s emerging worry lines and crow’s feet are as much to account for his easy win as his affected stammer as the emotionally crippled King Bertie, and the presence of a couple of actors whose youth and charisma make Oscar feel all funny in his special area only underline Firth’s win. (For that matter, you might say Firth’s Oscar chances last year weren’t so much dashed by Bridges’s battles with the bottle as they were by Tom Ford’s taste in men, culled from the very same smoldering age bracket Oscar simply can’t stomach.) Jesse Eisenberg managed to ride the coattails of what was once considered an Oscar juggernaut, and James Franco’s extracurricular bid to snatch the title once held by James Brown. But Ryan Gosling and Andrew Garfield learned the hard way that the Academy is truly No Country for Young Twinks, just as Firth will now have to come to terms with the notion that his time as the thinking woman’s sex symbol may not extend much longer beyond the time it takes to say, “I’d like to thank the Academy.”

Will Win: Colin Firth, The King’s Speech

Could Win: Miss LaHonda Watkins, The Miss Black Person USA Beauty Pageant

Should Win: Jeff Bridges, True Grit