Posts tagged ‘The King’s Speech’

November 18, 2010

Life and Times: Helena Bonham Carter

Helena Bonham Carter is opening two movies in two weekends! The girl is busy. First we’ve got the behemoth Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I and then it’s Oscar porn The King’s Speech for which she’s nearly secured a Supporting Actress nomination. All of that makes her the perfect candidate for this weeks Life and Times.

Helena is a Brit through and through. She was born in Golders Green, London which just sounds British on May 26th, 1966. After a turbulent childhood involving a psychotic mother and a semi-paralyzed father, she decided to forgo college to pursue acting. She had a humble acting debut with a television film called A Pattern of Roses. Her first leading roles were all in British period pieces such as Lady Jane or A Room with a View. This gave her the title “The Corset Queen” which I quite like.

Her personal life is a two man show. It started with a five year relationship with one of the leading British male actors (“The Corset King?”), Kenneth Branagh! After dating for 5 years, their relationship ended. In 2001, she and her current beau Tim Burton met on the set of one of the most romantic films of all times – Planet of the Apes. They have been an item ever since (but not married! how quirky and unconventional). Since she and Tim are not married, but they share two children, Billy Ray and Nell, they have a unique (unconventional) living situation. They have 2 houses next door to each other in Belsize Park, London with a door connecting the two houses. ADORABLE!

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November 16, 2010

Gold Diggers: Actress Action

Since last week The Hollywood Reporter hosted an actress roundtable that was a quite enjoyable watch, I thought I would comment on the state of the actress race. THR had 6 actresses chatting at their poorly decorate table: Amy Adams, Annette Bening, Helena Bonham Carter, Nicole Kidman, Natalie Portman, and Hilary Swank. I think they batted 5 for 6 in predicting future nominees… but let’s step into the field and take a look.

I’ll show you how I go through my process. There are 2 strategies and I try and use both. There are certain categories that you can fill and choose actresses that you think will get nominated. Or you can eliminate people by mentioning some aspect of their chances that are polarizing and will ultimately fail.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Here’s the field: Amy Adams (The Fighter), Helena Bonham Carter (The King’s Speech), Marion Cotillard (Inception), Elle Fanning (Somewhere), Barbara Hershey (Black Swan), Mila Kunis (Black Swan), Melissa Leo (The Fighter), Miranda Richardson (Made in Dagenham), Saorise Ronan (The Way Back), Sissy Spacek (Get Low), Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit), Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom), Dianne Wiest (Rabbit Hole)

I’ll be very surprised if someone outside of these 13 names gets a nomination. It’s a very weak field and these are definitely the people with the most buzz. Let’s start with some eliminations. Elle Fanning is probably great, but I think she is the minor with the least buzz. Jacki Weaver has a very strong following, but it’s small. I don’t think many people will see her film, nor do I think her performance is up to snuff.

Mila Kunis is a little too branded as just a pretty face to break through, and I’m not sure the Academy will respond to her being the driving force of lesbianism in an evil way. And I haven’t seen Black Swan yet, but I don’t think Barbara Hershey gets too much to do as the stage mom. Black Swan is Natalie Portman’s show… but we’ll get there later. Marion Cotillard is Inception’s best shot at an acting nomination, but I think the her chances have deteriorated since Inception’s lost steam since the summer. A DVD release might do something, but I bet more for Best Picture win chances as opposed to her nomination chances.

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October 18, 2010

Gold Diggers: The Best of What’s Around

The Oscar season is finally in full swing and week after week more trophy hopefuls will be released to the public for bashing intense adoration. So I’ll tackle a main category and sift through some contenders and interlopers.

BEST PICTURE

Let’s start with the big kahuna, the golden enchilada – best picture. If you don’t live underneath a rock you’ve probably heard the buzz for The Social Network. It certainly does “strike the zeitgeist”, or whatever terminology you want to use that means its of the here-and-now, and it also has a cool factor going for it. Aaron Sorkin? Really cool. Justin Timerblake? Cool. Facebook? Cool.

The King’s Speech is Oscar bait if I’ve ever seen it and I couldn’t be happier. Gentle British biopics are my absolute favorite (see An Education or A Single Man). The whole ensemble including Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, and Helena Bonham Carter are supposed to be as phenomenal as the next and a biopic about a king with a stutter during WWII no less? A surefire hit.

True Grit is one of the only mostly unseen contenders and if it is the Coen Bros. typical standard of film, it will definitely get the nomination. Another outstanding cast, a surely well-written screenplay and that’s about all you need these days for a best picture nomination. Not to mention Roger Deakins… he helps.

127 Hours is my next safe bet, because Danny Boyle is now in the Oscar club and quite cool. This movie is supposed to be a little harrowing and I think it could turn out to be an edgier choice for the Academy. Again, good script, good actor, good cinematograhy = best picture nomination.

This formula, which should also include Film editing, is what will also ensure The Kids Are All Right and Inception, the Summer holdovers, for a nomination. Toy Story 3 has the epic box office, the Pixar Pedigree, and a probably safe slot for animation open in the top 10.

As my guesses get more outlandish, look to my newly found formula of Actors+Screenplay+Editing=Best Picture and when you see two weaknesses, start to worry. Onwards to Another Year (probably sans Editing) but Mike Leigh is well loved and the film has been getting great reviews.

The Fighter may not have the screenplay but certainly has the cast and the editing to push it through. While David O. Russell is extremely unlikeable, he has worked with most everyone who should push him through to a nomination.

I’ll finally go with Black Swan as my number 10 slot. It’s gotten great reviews and certainly has the cast, editing, and screenplay… it just may not have the support. But I think this might be Aronofsky’s time to claim a little bit of Oscar love.

Best Picture (In order of nomination likeliness):

Best Picture:

1. The King’s Speech

2. Inception

3. The Social Network

4. The Kids Are All Right

5. Toy Story 3

6. True Grit

7. 127 Hours

8. Another Year

9. The Fighter

10. Black Swan

 

11. Winter’s Bone

12. The Way Back

13. Blue Valentine

14. Hereafter

15. Made in Dagenham

16. The Town

17. How to Train Your Dragon

18. Rabbit Hole

19. Love & Other Drugs

20. Secretariat