Ambiguous and shifting relationships are at the heart of two otherwise strikingly different new movies by Todd Haynes and William Oldroyd.
"She gives long looks to a particularly lithe and handsome inmate in the yard, despite his booking for stabbing his father to death"
"Despite", Scott? seems like she might think killing a father is an attractive quality in a young man.....
I have been so excited about both of these movies!
I really loved Eileen: The Book and def intrigued to see how it comes across on the screen. Beyond delighted that Shea Whigham is the dad in this - I don't know that there is an actor more suitable to the casting and I can only hope that this opens the door to many well-paying roles as senior grumps (versus middle-aged grumps) for him.
Just caught that May December shows up on NF tomorrow and while I'm sure it'll look grand on a big screen (Haynes has never made a movie that didn't look amazing, even his first few super low-fi things), this movie is gonna get such a wide audience on that platform that I can't see it as anything but a win.
I really loved May December. All the top performances are excellent, but Melton really stands out for being the emotional core of the film. He's already won Supporting Actor at NYFCC and that's probably not going to be his last win.
I also find the end reveal of the film Elizabeth is working on to be a great punchline.
Marin Ireland stole Eileen for me... only 2 scenes (1.5 maybe), but her big scene was the hinge of the film... great actor having a great year (where my Birth/Rebirth heads at!)
Happy that Keith didn't focus so much on May December as "camp" or "funny". Not that it isn't, but to me it's doing so many more interesting things with regards to denial and image. Charles Melton is revelatory, damn near steals the movie and it's because he gives off this in-between "not a boy, not yet a man" type vibe that seems to be barely holding on.
Always a great sign when I find myself chewing over a movie and discovering new things to think about or look at. I've had some great conversations about May December and I'm excited to see more.
I was really looking forward to seeing May December. I tried to find, Keith, what you saw in it, but, alas, I couldn't. I thought it was such a bland, listless piece of work in which all the colors were bled out (literally) and all the blood was colored out (figuratively). It barelly scratched the surafce of any of the characters, using "one can't really know any one" as an excuse for bad writing, yet it felt so self-important. I rarely comment on music in films -- either I love it, like in In the Mood of For Love or Body Heat, or The Mission, or Once Upon a Time in America -- or I don't remember it. But the music in this film was abrasive, screaming out "look at this, we're making a masterpiece!"
Yes, there are good scenes (I counted two): the "lipstick" scene, shamelessly borrowing from Bergman's Persona, and the graduation scene, when Joe watches his kids get their high school dimplomas and tears up helplessly. I think telling the entire story from his point of view would have been much, much more interesting. Anyway, thanks for letting me vent. I hope I didn't spoil anything for anyone or offended anyone. Peace!
Just saw Eileen last night, and it is such an oddball movie. If it wasn't based on a novel, I'd say the screenwriter didn't know how to handle the third act, but I see it's close to how the book goes. The novel is written in the first person, and maybe you need that kind of tunnel-vision/solipsism to make this more sensical, but the movie really falls apart for me when the big turn happens.
However, I absolutely adored the first two acts. McKenzie is so good (been a fan of hers since Leave No Trace), and Hathaway is wonderful in vixen mode. Somewhat surprising, as she was quite frumpy in Armageddon Time and I thought she'd aged out of these types of roles, but good for her -- I thought she was sultry and mysterious.
Marin Ireland's confession is amazing, not only for her performance but the content of that confession. Kudos to the studio for not softening the edges at all.