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Topic subjectCareer Trajectory Misgivings (Kate Beckinsale) -
Topic URLhttp://board.okayplayer.com/okp.php?az=show_topic&forum=23&topic_id=7354
7354, Career Trajectory Misgivings (Kate Beckinsale) -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Thu Sep-18-03 12:46 PM
So I have BET on in the background and they do an extended segment on Beckinsale's new cinematic vehicle, "Underworld"...

My reaction - WTF - the continuing saga of a once-promising actress (who went up to Oxford to read French and Russian Literature before leaving to focus on her acting career) stuck in the vapid assembly line production of Hollywood...

Now, having first seen her in the John Schlesinger-directed "Cold Comfort Farm" and in Branagh's "Much Ado About Nothing," I thought that she'd carry on in the vaunted tradition of smart British actresses (reference Helen Mirren and Charlotte Rampling)... Instead, she's become moreso like Elizabeth Hurley... You'd think that the Oxford experience would've given her pause to be selective about scripts... Apparently not, from "Pearl Harbor" ('nuff said) to the insipid "Brokedown Palace," her lone somewhat memorable performance since those aforementioned early roles was in Stillman's "The Last Days of Disco," which I tend to ascribe to Stillman's talent rather than hers at this juncture...

The question here is - is Hollywood's siren song so seductive that people w/ ability are willing to take on dumb and dumber roles? Monica Belluci balances out tripe like "Tears of the Sun" w/ roles such as "Irreversible" - regardless of how gratuitous that film was, it was at least food for thought and unsettling and sure to inspire both derision and praise into the future...

There are enough hacks such as Charlize Theron who survive strictly on looks alone (and there's definitely a place at the table for this) - Beckinsale wasn't one of 'em when she started, but she sure looks to be part of that legion now... And to become just another footnote in a long line of undistinguished actors and actresses w/ less-than-stellar credits to his/her name...
7355, Exhibit A (c) AnaStezia
Posted by REDeye, Thu Sep-18-03 01:00 PM
http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000295/

Aviator, The (2004) (filming) .... Ava Gardner
Van Helsing (2004) (post-production) .... Anna
Tiptoes (2003) (completed)


Underworld (2003) .... Selene
Laurel Canyon (2002) .... Alex
Serendipity (2001) .... Sara Thomas
Pearl Harbor (2001) .... Nurse Lt. Evelyn Johnson
... aka Pearl Harbour (2001) (UK: promotional title)
Golden Bowl, The (2000) .... Maggie Verver
... aka Coupe d'or, La (2000) (France)
Ladies & Gentlemen: The Best of George Michael (1999) (V) .... Girl ('Waltz Away Dreaming' video)
Brokedown Palace (1999) .... Darlene Davis
Alice Through the Looking Glass (1998) (TV) .... Alice
Last Days of Disco, The (1998) .... Charlotte Pingress
Shooting Fish (1997) .... Georgie
Emma (1997) (TV) .... Emma Woodhouse
Haunted (1995) .... Christina Mariell
Marie-Louise ou la permission (1995) .... Marie-Louise
Cold Comfort Farm (1995) (TV) .... Flora Poste
Uncovered (1994) .... Julia
... aka Tabla de Flandes, La (1994) (Spain)
Prince of Jutland (1994) .... Ethel
... aka Amled, prinsen af Jylland (1994) (Denmark)
... aka Prinsen af Jylland (1994) (Denmark: video title)
... aka Royal Deceit (1994) (USA)
Much Ado About Nothing (1993) .... Hero
Rachel's Dream (1992) (TV) .... Rachel
One Against the Wind (1991) (TV) .... Barbe Lindell
"Devices and Desires" (1991) (mini) TV Series (voice) .... Young Alice Mair


Not the worst resume in the world, but not terrible noteworthy. I didn't have her targeted for the same thing you did. I first noticed her in Last Days of Disco. (I'd seen Much Ado but didn't notice her.) I thought she was set to become the new indie queen, maybe a better looking Lily Taylor, a less annoying Parker Posey.

Which she was doing for a minute, still skirts that world. But man, those big paychecks are enticing. How can you not go after a couple of them? It's all about picking the right projects though. You just know lots of people, in front of as well as behind the camera, went into Pearl Harbor thinking it was the next Titanic. That people wanted the next Titanic shows you where heads were at.

But I think Underworld was a smart move for her. Give her a little edge, a little darkness, instead of just trying for all the pretty face roles in Hollywood. If the movie does well, it she will be the next Carrie-Anne Moss. Which ain't too bad. There are only a handful of them.

RED
Ora et labora
7356, post more often
Posted by ricky_BUTLER, Thu Sep-18-03 01:07 PM
you're striking gold.

>The question here is - is Hollywood's siren song so
>seductive that people w/ ability are willing to take on dumb
>and dumber roles? Monica Belluci balances out tripe like
>"Tears of the Sun" w/ roles such as "Irreversible" -
>regardless of how gratuitous that film was, it was at least
>food for thought and unsettling and sure to inspire both
>derision and praise into the future...

two "c"s in "bellucci", but that's a minor complaint.

why?

i wish it seemed like something more than universal appeal and money, but shit, even i'm a weak person. if you offered me universal recognition and cash, i'd be on the first flight out to hollywood to costar with josh hartnett and david spade in whatever mcg was directing.

beskinsale was on the daily show, i believe last week, and mentioned that recently she moved out to los angeles.

for starters, it seems ironic that i find out she went to oxford, because i figured she was just another "dumb attractive" type, but carried herself quite well in the conversation. she spoke of hollywood from her (and other's) perspective as being this selling of the soul, whose slightest mention conjures shrieks.

she seems to be aware of any "sacrafices" she's making. but as to why?

dj shadow told you: it's the money.

now granted it would appear actors/actresses are more comfortable finacially than those in the music business, but when you can catch eyes, you get offered certain roles, sometimes possibly exclusively, and you gotta jump a couple times.

i figure if she's doing "pearl harbor" and "underworld", what is she turning down?
7357, RE: Career Trajectory Misgivings (Kate Beckinsale) -
Posted by King_Friday, Thu Sep-18-03 01:41 PM
It's an ever growing trend.

Like we discussed before, think how few actors make the leap that Dirk Bogarde did. . . he started out with a commercial career but traded it all in for more artistic pursuits.

Now you have actors doing the exact opposite! It's so strange. Actors you see in small american films or certain foreign films are popping up in the most bizarre hollywood/commercial projects.

Even a formerly talented "indie" director like Soderbergh has gone in the direction of the dollar. (Ocean's Twelve is on the way).

But it can't be just the dollar, or *just* the hollywood meat-grinder can it?

Think of other actors from the past who existed in that atmosphere but gave great performances in hollywood films: Marlene Dietrich, Marlon Brando, James Stewart, or even people like Robert Ryan and John Garfield (two of my favorites).

Think of Douglas Sirk who got all those potentially ridiculous soap-opera scripts dumped on him, but turned them into incredible works of art, human and political.

There seems to be a general artistic weakness going around today. Something is missing. There doesn't seem to be much direction. Even american "independent" filmmakers define their "independence" only in financial terms and not on artistic or political grounds.

Consider this too: some of the best performances in acting today are done by total amateurs, all those first-time actors in Iranian films for instance. Consider also their background--many of them living in poverty and under an oppressive and corrupt government like no other.

Compare that to America's "best and brightest": Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Josh Hartnett, the blonde guy from Fast And The Furious, and more.

There's something there I think. It's worth exploring.


7358, sarah polley
Posted by ricky_BUTLER, Thu Sep-18-03 02:09 PM
>It's an ever growing trend.

>Now you have actors doing the exact opposite! It's so
>strange. Actors you see in small american films or certain
>foreign films are popping up in the most bizarre
>hollywood/commercial projects.

sarah polley.

i always like to throw her name out there in these discussions. you could argue "go" was some sort of "infraction", but she was begged by the director and hasn't really stepped that south since.

>Even a formerly talented "indie" director like Soderbergh
>has gone in the direction of the dollar.

yeah, but "solaris" wasn't a money-maker or didn't have the potential to be one.

>But it can't be just the dollar, or *just* the hollywood
>meat-grinder can it?

>There seems to be a general artistic weakness going around
>today. Something is missing.

maybe we need a strong studio system again, so that people can (honestly) independently find some artistic expression and something to creatively rebel against.

maybe it's like quest's hiphop crack take-maybe times for the artist need to be tough before art can be better again.

political environment?
what does harry lime say in "the third man":

In Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, bloodshed - they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love, 500 years of democracy and peace and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.
7359, sarah polley
Posted by DrNO, Thu Sep-18-03 09:06 PM
damn straight. Plus shes Canadian. Her latest one looks pretty cliche though.
7360, RE: inexperienced actors
Posted by Mynoriti, Thu Sep-18-03 02:41 PM
>Consider this too: some of the best performances in acting
>today are done by total amateurs

So true. Keisha Castle Hughes who was 12 years old with no acting experience out acted 95% of Hollywood in Whale Rider. City of God had only one professional actor, and I believe that the entire cast of Raising Victor Vargas had virtually no acting experience (minus one film short). Amazing performances all around.

You know I'm not a big fan of Taste of Cherry but I can't front on the awsome performances in that either.
7361, RE: Career Trajectory Misgivings (Kate Beckinsale) -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Thu Sep-18-03 03:55 PM
>There's something there I think. It's worth exploring.

I was mulling this over during an evening stroll after posting - I think the subtlety lies in that somewhere along the way, film in Hollywood went from a dichotomy of entertainment AND art to strictly entertainment...

Moving beyond the tried-and-true position of commerce versus art, I kinda feel that if you're an artisan, part of you would still want to make a mark, an impression that outlasts you and is a defining watermark of your talent and execution...

W/ regards to Bellucci (and, yes, RB - it was a slip from typing while thinkin') - I threw her in the mix b/c of the fact that she seems to be an intelligent sort, completing (or coming very close to) her law studies before embarking on an acting career... "Tears of the Sun" is payin' the bills - "Irreversible" is not - neither is "The Apartment" whereas "Malena" straddles the line... It's not mutually exclusive and Bellucci strikes me as wanting to leave a body of work that's got greatness attached to certain performances...

Emmanuelle Beart also comes to mind - her roles haven't all been great, but "Manon of the Spring," "Un coeur en hiver," "La belle Nicoise," etc. confirm her as a viable and credible actress w/ talent who's also attractive and likely to succeed Denueve eventually as the definitive Gallic feminine icon...
7362, its what people want
Posted by DrNO, Thu Sep-18-03 09:03 PM
hollywood is a business because for some reason movies cost money to make and they try and give the public what they want to obtain that money. This is the way hollywood has worked for nearly 100 years. So you pretty much get a lot of shit and some stuff that will endure. The actors you named undoubtedly turned out some hot garbage in their time and probably knew it was going in. And remember when you praise the state of film in other countries that only the cream of the crop makes it over here. Its likely they have the same hit to miss ratio as we do. Unexperienced actors also tend not to have any range beyond roles that resemble their own lives.
Plus even an actor you named as bad, Matt Damon, has made some pretty ambitious films. Take a look at "Gerry". As for Soderbergh the money he made from oceans 11 was used to produce a film called "Far From Heaven".
7363, RE: its what people want
Posted by bignick, Thu Sep-18-03 10:29 PM

>Plus even an actor you named as bad, Matt Damon, has made
>some pretty ambitious films. Take a look at "Gerry".
i'll take that a step further. it's disrespectful to even lump him in with those other guys. Damon is a hell of an actor and he's proven it time and time again in movies like School Ties, The Talented Mr. Ripley, Good Will Hunting, Courage Under Fire, Chasing Amy, Saving Private Ryan, etc.
please don't compare him to Paul Walker.
7364, RE: its what people want
Posted by King_Friday, Fri Sep-19-03 03:39 AM

>i'll take that a step further. it's disrespectful to even
>lump him in with those other guys. Damon is a hell of an
>actor

I disagree. I don't think he's a very good actor. I think most of his performances have been pretty dry and not very moving.

>and he's proven it time and time again in movies like
>School Ties, The Talented Mr. Ripley, Good Will Hunting,
>Courage Under Fire, Chasing Amy, Saving Private Ryan, etc.

I don't like a single one of those movies.

>please don't compare him to Paul Walker.

That's the blonde guy from Fast And The Furious? Well. . . I'm not going to compare Damon to Sterling Hayden or John Garfield, so Paul Walker will have to do.

7365, nobody deserves
Posted by DrNO, Fri Sep-19-03 03:52 AM
to be compared with paul walker.
7366, except maybe Keanu
Posted by Mynoriti, Fri Sep-19-03 04:40 AM
who Paul seems to have modeled his acting style after

...and sure Damon isn't DeNiro but he's a solid actor
7367, RE: Well...
Posted by jigga, Fri Sep-19-03 04:51 AM
>to be compared with paul walker.

How bout Vin Diesel, Keanu Reeves & Freddie Prinze Jr. Josh Harnett aint much of a stretch either.
7368, they all blow him out of the water
Posted by DrNO, Fri Sep-19-03 06:25 AM
Keanu isn't great, but hes been in a few good movies. Vin has been in some good stuff, certainly not lately though. hartnett was alright in black hawk down, he might just be chosing shitty roles. Okay Freddie prinze Jr is in Paul Walkers league.
7369, RE: they all blow him out of the water
Posted by jigga, Fri Sep-19-03 09:56 AM
>Keanu isn't great, but hes been in a few good movies.

Been in a few good movies but has he been good in them? Other than I Love U 2 Death, I'd say no.

Vin
>has been in some good stuff, certainly not lately though.

True dat. He was aiiight in Boiler Room & Savin Private Ryan but other than that...BLAH

>hartnett was alright in black hawk down, he might just be
>chosing shitty roles.

I thought he was horribly miscast in Black Hawk Down. He was decent in the shiddy Pearl Harbor but Black Hawk Down proved 2 me that he's a hack.


Okay Freddie prinze Jr is in Paul
>Walkers league.

Glad 2 see there was no argument there:)
7370, RE: its what people want
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 07:10 AM
you are certainly entitled to your opinion, but i think that the vast majority of critics and fans will tell you that he was very good in at least a few of those movies. and, i think that there is some middle ground between legendary screen icon and no-talent heartthrob.
7371, *applause*
Posted by kurlyswirl, Fri Sep-19-03 11:23 AM
n/m ks

7372, RE: its what people want
Posted by King_Friday, Fri Sep-19-03 01:50 PM
> but i think that
>the vast majority of critics and fans will tell you that he
>was very good in at least a few of those movies.

But I don't care what a vast majority of critics and fans think. Popular opinion doesn't matter to me.

Look, I'm only judging Damon by what I've seen. And I don't like it. His performances have never moved me and neither have any of his films as a whole.

>and, i
>think that there is some middle ground between legendary
>screen icon and no-talent heartthrob.

Sure, but Damon doesn't exist on the middle ground. He's strictly lower level.

7373, RE: its what people want
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 01:55 PM
>But I don't care what a vast majority of critics and fans
>think. Popular opinion doesn't matter to me.
it doesn't have to matter to you. the point is that there are tons of people who think he's talented. so you can't just lump him in with a bunch of clowns and think people are gonna take it as gospel.

>Sure, but Damon doesn't exist on the middle ground. He's
>strictly lower level.
you're right, he doesn't exist on the middle ground. he's clearly proven himself to be one of the finer young actors working today.


7374, :
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 02:18 PM
>it doesn't have to matter to you. the point is that there
>are tons of people who think he's talented. so you can't
>just lump him in with a bunch of clowns and think people are
>gonna take it as gospel.

So popular opinion defines what's good or what's bad as opposed to deriving your own judgment of affairs?

>you're right, he doesn't exist on the middle ground. he's
>clearly proven himself to be one of the finer young actors
>working today.

In a subpar Hollywood of this day and age, you're right, but he's still a pretty sorry excuse for an actor if we're takin' in the context of cinema, especially if we factor in international cinema... He's definitely no Daniel Auteil... Or Tony Leung for that matter...
7375, RE: :
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 02:46 PM

>So popular opinion defines what's good or what's bad as
>opposed to deriving your own judgment of affairs?
like i said. you can have your own judgement, but dont' expect people to sit back and take it as gospel.


>In a subpar Hollywood of this day and age, you're right, but
>he's still a pretty sorry excuse for an actor if we're
>takin' in the context of cinema, especially if we factor in
>international cinema... He's definitely no Daniel Auteil...
> Or Tony Leung for that matter...
disagree. he's a damn fine actor. in any generation, internatioal talent included.


7376, RE: :
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 03:02 PM
>like i said. you can have your own judgement, but dont'
>expect people to sit back and take it as gospel.

Nor yours...

>disagree. he's a damn fine actor. in any generation,
>internatioal talent included.

This comin' from someone who thinks so much of a virtual message board that he's part of some Okaysports hall-of-fame? Right... That's an ad hominem counterpoint, by the point... You prolly got Okayplayer t-shirts up the yin-yang as well, right?
7377, she gotta pay rent
Posted by soundsop, Thu Sep-18-03 02:08 PM

7378, RE: Career Trajectory Misgivings (Kate Beckinsale) -
Posted by actualfact, Thu Sep-18-03 02:22 PM
The question here is - is Hollywood's siren song so seductive that people w/ ability are willing to take on dumb and dumber roles?

Shit look at what we did to the greats of Hong Kong Cinema? Chow-Yun Fat, Jet Li, Jackie Chan, shit, John Woo?

Their careers have all gone to SHIT since they migrated. They have taken shitty roles in even shittier movies and people wonder what the big fucking deal is about these cats because most people know them from schlock like BulletProof Monk, From the Cradle 2 The Grave, The Shanghai series and Windtalkers...

So it's no surprise that hollywood is chewing up other folks. i think an actress like Belucci will do far better in a cross over because the sense I get from her is that of being grounded and strong. She has presence and i believe it is linked to her own strength that's why she gets the roles she does and does so well in them.

Kate Beckinsale doesn't give me that feeling. not that i studied her work but the little bit i have seen of her makes me think she might not cut it. no loss in my mind


7379, the shanghai movies are great
Posted by DrNO, Thu Sep-18-03 08:47 PM
cant say the same for rush hour (jackie even admits he dislikes them) and the tuxedo and the medallion. But the Shanghai films are damn good.
7380, RE: Career Trajectory Misgivings (Kate Beckinsale) -
Posted by jigga, Fri Sep-19-03 04:53 AM
>The question here is - is Hollywood's siren song so
>seductive that people w/ ability are willing to take on dumb
>and dumber roles?
>
>Shit look at what we did to the greats of Hong Kong Cinema?
>Chow-Yun Fat, Jet Li, Jackie Chan, shit, John Woo?

What "we" did? They've got no one 2 blame but themselves. They select the roles.

7381, Gerard Depardieu
Posted by raool, Thu Sep-18-03 04:31 PM
I don't believe he has ever done a decent English-speaking movie even if he's arguably the mot well-known French actor of the past 20 years.
7382, yeah. my father the hero
Posted by ricky_BUTLER, Thu Sep-18-03 04:36 PM
>I don't believe he has ever done a decent English-speaking
>movie even if he's arguably the mot well-known French actor
>of the past 20 years.

i know it was a remake of a supposedly better film, but that was my first exposure to the man and it scarred me.
7383, In defense of Kate Beckinsale
Posted by bignick, Thu Sep-18-03 07:29 PM
think of it this way. you do a couple two three movies (Cold Comfort Farm, The Last Days of Disco) , all of a sudden you are a Hollywood It girl. you're making some cash. you have to strike while the iron is hot. you do a standard romantic comedy (Serendipity) and a big budget blockbuster (Pearl Harbor) because you have to do those movies if you're offered them. they stink and you get no heat from them. so, you come back with a smaller, artier movie like Laurel Canyon (which was totally indie and "adult" even though i thought it was pretty blah. Francis McDormand was great, but what else is new?) and that doesn't really get you any heat either. so now you get a chance to be the star of a cool, action movie where you get to wear Matrix outfits, do stunts and shoot werewolves. oh, and the writer/director is your fiance.
who's gonna say no to that?
her next movie, Tiptoes, has Gary Oldman in it, so it automatically gets the benefit of the doubt from me. and she's currently filming a Scorsese movie about Howard Hughes with Leo, Cate Blanchett, and Gwen Stefani.
looks like she's doing alright to me.
7384, Retort -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 04:23 AM
>think of it this way. you do a couple two three movies
>(Cold Comfort Farm, The Last Days of Disco) , all of a
>sudden you are a Hollywood It girl. you're making some
>cash. you have to strike while the iron is hot. you do a
>standard romantic comedy (Serendipity) and a big budget
>blockbuster (Pearl Harbor) because you have to do those
>movies if you're offered them. they stink and you get no
>heat from them. so, you come back with a smaller, artier
>movie like Laurel Canyon (which was totally indie and
>"adult" even though i thought it was pretty blah. Francis
>McDormand was great, but what else is new?) and that doesn't
>really get you any heat either. so now you get a chance to
>be the star of a cool, action movie where you get to wear
>Matrix outfits, do stunts and shoot werewolves. oh, and the
>writer/director is your fiance.
>who's gonna say no to that?

She and Wiseman became romantically involved DURING the filming of "Underworld," NOT before so she took on the project w/o any personal factors coming into play... "Laurel Canyon" is what you do when your last couple of vehicles tank - not necessarily in a fiscal manner, but on a critical level...

>her next movie, Tiptoes, has Gary Oldman in it, so it
>automatically gets the benefit of the doubt from me. and
>she's currently filming a Scorsese movie about Howard Hughes
>with Leo, Cate Blanchett, and Gwen Stefani.
>looks like she's doing alright to me.

Here's why I think this is suspect - both Oldman and Blanchett remind me of Dietrich in that they don't mail in performances, BUT do feature in movies that are subpar - who's to say that Beckinsale can deliver despite lackluster material? I'm not so sure - Stefani's not a ringing endorsement w/ regards to producing a standard of excellence from my vantage point...
7385, Addendum
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 04:26 AM
Her role in "Laurel..." is for all intents and purposes a minor supporting role - nothin' major and definitely not a command performance...
7386, RE: Addendum
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 07:16 AM
it was not a minor role. she and Christian Bale were basically both second leads after Francis McDormand.
7387, RE: Addendum
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 09:27 AM
>it was not a minor role. she and Christian Bale were
>basically both second leads after Francis McDormand.

No, the entire movie was and is Frances McDormand - everybody else is just window dressing - it could've been someone else other than Beckinsale and it wouldn't have made a difference...
7388, RE: Retort -
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 07:14 AM

>She and Wiseman became romantically involved DURING the
>filming of "Underworld," NOT before so she took on the
>project w/o any personal factors coming into play...
so what? it's still a chance to be the star, kick ass, look cool etc.

>"Laurel Canyon" is what you do when your last couple of
>vehicles tank - not necessarily in a fiscal manner, but on a
>critical level...
which is exactly my point.


>Here's why I think this is suspect - both Oldman and
>Blanchett remind me of Dietrich in that they don't mail in
>performances, BUT do feature in movies that are subpar -
but they've also both been in way more movies that have higher aspirations than just your run of the mill mutliplex fare.

>who's to say that Beckinsale can deliver despite lackluster
>material? I'm not so sure - Stefani's not a ringing
>endorsement w/ regards to producing a standard of excellence
>from my vantage point...
i love how you convienently igonred those other names. Scorsese and DiCaprio. i'm not saying that this movie is gonna be Goodfellas, but it's clear that it won't be Varsity Blues either.

7389, RE: Retort -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 09:25 AM
>so what? it's still a chance to be the star, kick ass, look
>cool etc.

But the manner in which you phrased it made it seem that b/c Wiseman is her fiance that it would've been incumbent upon her to take the role whereas there was NO involvement whatsoever prior to shooting...

>which is exactly my point.

B/c you're not bein' offered A-list roles nor anything as interesting as McDormand (in this instance)...

>but they've also both been in way more movies that have
>higher aspirations than just your run of the mill mutliplex
>fare.

I'm not disputing their talent - they've also been in stinkers nevertheless...

>i love how you convienently igonred those other names.
>Scorsese and DiCaprio. i'm not saying that this movie is
>gonna be Goodfellas, but it's clear that it won't be Varsity
>Blues either.

I ignored them simply b/c of this - DiCaprio I think has talent, but he's coasting these days - his name alone won't suffice in drawing me to see a film - same for Scorsese - he's better off as a film historian at this juncture of his career as evident w/ his exploration of Italian and American cinema... They're at this point - *whatever* - I gave 'em a pass b/c of what what they had accomplished 5 years prior, not now...
7390, RE: Retort -
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 12:13 PM
>But the manner in which you phrased it made it seem that b/c
>Wiseman is her fiance that it would've been incumbent upon
>her to take the role whereas there was NO involvement
>whatsoever prior to shooting...
so that point is moot. but there were still plenty of other reasons for her to make the movie.

>I'm not disputing their talent - they've also been in
>stinkers nevertheless...
who hasn't? if you make movies long enough, you will make several bad ones. it's like death and taxes.


>I ignored them simply b/c of this - DiCaprio I think has
>talent, but he's coasting these days - his name alone won't
>suffice in drawing me to see a film - same for Scorsese -
>he's better off as a film historian at this juncture of his
>career as evident w/ his exploration of Italian and American
>cinema... They're at this point - *whatever* - I gave 'em a
>pass b/c of what what they had accomplished 5 years prior,
>not now...
give them a break. so they haven't made a great movie in a couple of years. they still have a proven track record of at least trying to do quality work, which is the only thing that we are debating. maybe Kate Beckinsale isn't Meryl Streep. but it's not like she's doing Friday After Next. you can't deny that she is at least trying to do good work when possible.

7391, RE: Retort -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 01:30 PM
>so that point is moot. but there were still plenty of other
>reasons for her to make the movie.

You bring it up - you answer for it - takin' you to task, but I didn't pull the card in the 1st place...

>give them a break.

Why should anyone? 'Cause they're *DiCaprio* and *Scorsese*? Give me a break...

>so they haven't made a great movie in a
>couple of years. they still have a proven track record of
>at least trying to do quality work, which is the only thing
>that we are debating. maybe Kate Beckinsale isn't Meryl
>Streep. but it's not like she's doing Friday After Next. you
>can't deny that she is at least trying to do good work when
>possible.

Not evident in the case of DiCaprio nor Beckinsale - Scorsese still may be tryin', but methinks the creative and excellence quota is maxed out in his case...

Demonstrate that you're actually aspiring to do good work by BEING in good work...
7392, RE: Retort -
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 01:47 PM
>You bring it up - you answer for it - takin' you to task,
>but I didn't pull the card in the 1st place...
taking me to task? relax. they met while filming the movie. the point is moot. like i said, there were still plenty of reasons for her to do the film

>>give them a break.
>
>Why should anyone? 'Cause they're *DiCaprio* and
>*Scorsese*? Give me a break...
becuase it's impossible to do great movie after great movie. a lot of people really liked Gangs of New York, a lot of people really liked Catch me if you Can. sorry if they don't live up to your standards of cinematic excellence, but that doesn't nullify them as quality attempts at cinema.

>>so they haven't made a great movie in a
>>couple of years. they still have a proven track record of
>>at least trying to do quality work, which is the only thing
>>that we are debating. maybe Kate Beckinsale isn't Meryl
>>Streep. but it's not like she's doing Friday After Next. you
>>can't deny that she is at least trying to do good work when
>>possible.
>
>Not evident in the case of DiCaprio nor Beckinsale -
so i guess Leo making a movie with Speilberg and Tom Hanks isn't good enough for you? and her working with the likes of Scorsese, McDormand, Oldman, etc isn't good enough either? now you're just talking out of your ass.

>Scorsese still may be tryin', but methinks the creative and
>excellence quota is maxed out in his case...
methinks you thinks a lot of yourself to be second guessing Martin Scorsese.

>Demonstrate that you're actually aspiring to do good work by
>BEING in good work...
anyone who knows anything about art knows that you aren't always rewarded by the best intentions. you don't think everyone involved in AI, Eyes Wide Shut, or Kundun wasn't trying to make the best movie they could? besides the fact that no matter how good you are as an actor, you can't elevate a film if the script is shit, the other actors are bad, or the director is bad. you tried to make an example out of her and to me, it just doesn't hold water. anyone who's worked with the people that she has is clearly trying to do good work. you can't really blame her just because she hasn't been in Citizen Kane.

7393, RE: Retort -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 01:59 PM
>becuase it's impossible to do great movie after great movie.
> a lot of people really liked Gangs of New York, a lot of
>people really liked Catch me if you Can. sorry if they
>don't live up to your standards of cinematic excellence, but
>that doesn't nullify them as quality attempts at cinema.

Yeah, especially when they've been firing blanks the last 5 years or so... Uneven is somethin' that's not a problem, devoid is a whole 'nother matter...

>so i guess Leo making a movie with Speilberg and Tom Hanks
>isn't good enough for you? and her working with the likes
>of Scorsese, McDormand, Oldman, etc isn't good enough
>either? now you're just talking out of your ass.

Spielberg, Hanks - KF and Mynoriti both know how I feel about both - and to give you a notion, I'm not a Hollywood apologist - Hanks is and always was overrated - despite his best attempts, he ain't ever gonna fill Jimmy Stewart's shoes... Talkin' out-of-turn - bring on the entire pantheon of cinema from the Lumiere brothers on and we'll get deep as opposed to citin' less-than-convincing Hollywood pablum...

>methinks you thinks a lot of yourself to be second guessing
>Martin Scorsese.

And methinks you're too engrossed in Hollywood's factory assembly line to realize that's it's all here today, gone today crap...

>anyone who knows anything about art knows that you aren't
>always rewarded by the best intentions. you don't think
>everyone involved in AI, Eyes Wide Shut, or Kundun wasn't
>trying to make the best movie they could? besides the fact
>that no matter how good you are as an actor, you can't
>elevate a film if the script is shit, the other actors are
>bad, or the director is bad. you tried to make an example
>out of her and to me, it just doesn't hold water. anyone
>who's worked with the people that she has is clearly trying
>to do good work. you can't really blame her just because
>she hasn't been in Citizen Kane.

And this goes back to what I said about Dietrich - you can deliver a performance DESPITE the underwhelming calibre of material - Beckinsale can't and her selection of roles decisively points to her never bein' able to realize whatever rhetoric escapes her lips...
7394, RE: Retort -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 02:01 PM
>>methinks you thinks a lot of yourself to be second guessing
>>Martin Scorsese.

Tell me why Scorsese struggled to make "Gangs..." - not 'cause he's a perfectionist, but b/c he just doesn't have it any longer - nothin' wrong in statin' that - and I completely back his efforts at film restoration/revivals/etc. - I just don't think he's a good filmmaker anymore...
7395, RE: Retort -
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 02:54 PM
>Tell me why Scorsese struggled to make "Gangs..." - not
>'cause he's a perfectionist, but b/c he just doesn't have it
>any longer - nothin' wrong in statin' that - and I
>completely back his efforts at film
>restoration/revivals/etc. - I just don't think he's a good
>filmmaker anymore...
you don't have to think he's a good filmaker anymore. the point is that no one in the film industry is going to think any less of anyone who decides to work with him. in fact, i think that being cast in a Scrosese film still elevates any actor or actress in most people's minds.
7396, RE: Retort -
Posted by bignick, Fri Sep-19-03 02:53 PM
>Yeah, especially when they've been firing blanks the last 5
>years or so... Uneven is somethin' that's not a problem,
>devoid is a whole 'nother matter...
like i said. just because you don't like it, doesn't mean he wasn't trying to do quality work.


>Spielberg, Hanks - KF and Mynoriti both know how I feel
>about both - and to give you a notion, I'm not a Hollywood
>apologist - Hanks is and always was overrated - despite his
>best attempts, he ain't ever gonna fill Jimmy Stewart's
>shoes... Talkin' out-of-turn - bring on the entire pantheon
>of cinema from the Lumiere brothers on and we'll get deep as
>opposed to citin' less-than-convincing Hollywood pablum...
he doesn't have to fill Jimmy Stewart's shoes. he's done enough good work to stand on his own. and when it's all said and done, you can bet your ass that he's gonna be remembered in the same breat as all the legendear leading men. like it or not.


>And methinks you're too engrossed in Hollywood's factory
>assembly line to realize that's it's all here today, gone
>today crap...
no, i just have my head on straight enough to realize that there are alays been shitty movies, and there will always be shitty movies. if you would start living in the now, you'd see that there are plenty of good movies being made in Hollywood's assmebly line.

>And this goes back to what I said about Dietrich - you can
>deliver a performance DESPITE the underwhelming calibre of
>material - Beckinsale can't and her selection of roles
>decisively points to her never bein' able to realize
>whatever rhetoric escapes her lips...

and i still go back to what i said. you want to criticize her acting ability..fine. i'm not going to defend that. but i don't see how you can say that she's not at least trying to do good work.
all of this from someone who started their post. "So I have BET on in the background..."
hilarious.

7397, RE: Retort -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 02:58 PM
>>opposed to citin' less-than-convincing Hollywood pablum...
>he doesn't have to fill Jimmy Stewart's shoes. he's done
>enough good work to stand on his own. and when it's all said
>and done, you can bet your ass that he's gonna be remembered
>in the same breat as all the legendear leading men. like it
>or not.

Convenient that you elected to ignore other actors cited, especially international ones or aren't you familiar w/ 'em?

>no, i just have my head on straight enough to realize that
>there are alays been shitty movies, and there will always be
>shitty movies. if you would start living in the now, you'd
>see that there are plenty of good movies being made in
>Hollywood's assmebly line.

No, there's a complete division b/w when Hollywood was churning out entertainment AND art and now, when it's just entertainment...

>and i still go back to what i said. you want to criticize
>her acting ability..fine. i'm not going to defend that. but
>i don't see how you can say that she's not at least trying
>to do good work.

She's not - it's evident to anyone w/ who knows film apart from Hollywood...

>all of this from someone who started their post. "So I have
>BET on in the background..."
>hilarious.

Ad hominem argument gets you nowhere - especially since it's also a non-sequitur... Get it? Good - now go study up on cinema from 1860 or so...
7398, RE: Retort -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 02:10 PM
Here's another name I raised earlier -

Emmanuelle Beart

Who easily could be considered eye candy, has starred in 1 Hollywood vehicle, but continues to choose work such as Ruiz's homage to Proust, "Time Regained"...

You don't ever see Beckinsale's name attached to low profile British productions anymore and whatever you advocate by claimin' that she's seekin' good work by workin' w/ name actors doesn't dispel from the fact that she hasn't been makin' great choices w/ regards to script and looks to be just blowin' hot air about creatin' great art... Now if I was mistaken in believing that she potentially could've been a good actress on the strength of "Cold Comfort Farm" and "Much Ado...," so be it... At this point, she's just mediocre...
7399, What would you do?
Posted by cantball, Thu Sep-18-03 07:47 PM
I'd take the cash NOW,and do the art later.
7400, and look at how
Posted by DrNO, Thu Sep-18-03 08:50 PM
hollywood discards any woman over 30. If she wants to live well she needs to go for it while she can.
7401, Dichotomy -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 04:19 AM
>I'd take the cash NOW,and do the art later.

Doesn't have to be mutually exclusive as exemplified by Bellucci...
7402, you know, I'm not seeing how
Posted by REDeye, Fri Sep-19-03 06:02 AM
Bellucci's career illustrates your point.

She was a model, not an Oxford student. She wasn't trained on the Shakespearean stage. She's from Italy. She made more high-minded European movies because, well, that's what they make over there. Even still, she managed to show up in Brotherhood of the Wolf, which is part of this recent movement of European and Asian filmmakers to try to mimic Hollywood-style films (Shiri from Korea, France's With a Friend Like Harry, Crimson Rivers, and others.) So she's made Europe's version of the crap you're blasting Beckinsale for, and she's now catching up on her share of Hollywood crap too. Perhaps she would have done Irreversible if it wasn't her husband's film, but I doubt it. Not that it isn't in her to do, but she would have had no impetus to do something so dangerous.

I'm not completely familiar with her earliest work, but it looks to me like I can say the same thing about her that you said about Beckinsale. Basically, she started out dong small stuff until she had a chance to do larger, more commercial stuff. She worked on tiny projects, little seen foreign productions, and now she's trying to get paid just like the rest of them. I don't think she set out to be an actress just to get paid, but the point Beckinsale's defenders seem to be making is that once presented with a chance to get paid, why turn it down? Not saying that's right or wrong, but I think Bellucci is part of that same trend.

RED
Ora et labora
7403, Hmmm -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 07:14 AM
>Bellucci's career illustrates your point.
>She was a model, not an Oxford student. She wasn't trained
>on the Shakespearean stage. She's from Italy. She made more
>high-minded European movies because, well, that's what they
>make over there. Even still, she managed to show up in
>Brotherhood of the Wolf, which is part of this recent
>movement of European and Asian filmmakers to try to mimic
>Hollywood-style films (Shiri from Korea, France's With a
>Friend Like Harry, Crimson Rivers, and others.) So she's
>made Europe's version of the crap you're blasting Beckinsale
>for, and she's now catching up on her share of Hollywood
>crap too. Perhaps she would have done Irreversible if it
>wasn't her husband's film, but I doubt it. Not that it isn't
>in her to do, but she would have had no impetus to do
>something so dangerous.

Point taken RE - but she was a law student prior and did modelling gigs on the side... And I'm not painting her in strictly an untainted light - the second "Asterix" movie for instance - but I do believe that she will take on projects that are infused w/ more gravitas to balance out what she's currently doin' - and she was doin' this prior to hitchin' up w/ Cassel... Instead of just paying lip service to bein' engaged in the art of film (like Beckinsale in print and television interviews), Bellucci's decisions actually have demonstrated conviction...

>I'm not completely familiar with her earliest work, but it
>looks to me like I can say the same thing about her that you
>said about Beckinsale. Basically, she started out dong small
>stuff until she had a chance to do larger, more commercial
>stuff. She worked on tiny projects, little seen foreign
>productions, and now she's trying to get paid just like the
>rest of them. I don't think she set out to be an actress
>just to get paid, but the point Beckinsale's defenders seem
>to be making is that once presented with a chance to get
>paid, why turn it down? Not saying that's right or wrong,
>but I think Bellucci is part of that same trend.

I think the litmus test will be to see the career arc of both into the future - my $'s on Bellucci continuing to do roles that are gloss as well as substantial whereas I think thet Beckinsale will agree to a string of mediocre projects ad infinitum w/ the odd, but especially infrequent surprise here and there...
7404, I just don't think it's a fair comparison
Posted by REDeye, Fri Sep-19-03 08:20 AM
Monica Bellucci, for better or worse, is seen in Hollywood as an exotic. You know, just as Penelope Cruz has been tapped to play Brazilian, Italian, Greek (ugh!) and whatever else, Hollywood filmmakers only see her in terms of filling whatever exotic roles they might have in scripts. Which aren't many. Your standard hollywood filmmaker doesn't know what to do with her. So while she may not be actively pursuing dumbass paycheck roles in movies such as Pearl Harbor, it's probably moot since those aren't really going to be offered to her. She's a fine actress and will be able to work in European cinema for a long time. Therefore, over time, her resume will be filled with a lot more Irreversibles than Matrices or Tears of Suns. Probably no way to know for sure, but I think her appearance in such tribe as Tears of the Sun demonstrates a willingness to do that stuff, but I don't think she even gets considered for most of that stuff.

Beckinsale, on the other hand, is not exotic at all. Even if she were to stick to the stage or try to only do British films, there's nothing about her that stands out. She's a decent actress, but there's not enough work in British film to sustain just a group of indistiguisible actress. If she wants to do any kind of substantial work, she needs to "go Hollywood."

Remember, though, it's not that I disagree with you about the point you're making about KB, or about Hollywood's siren call. I just think it applies to Monica as well. I won't go so far as to say "she would sell out if she could," but I think she's very receptive to siren call, but the call isn't really directed at her.

Incidentally, I have different expectations for Underworld. Not that it's going to be a great movie, but it looks like good clean fun. And I think it will be a boost for KB's career.

RED
Ora et labora
7405, Not so sure -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 09:36 AM
>Beckinsale, on the other hand, is not exotic at all. Even if
>she were to stick to the stage or try to only do British
>films, there's nothing about her that stands out. She's a
>decent actress, but there's not enough work in British film
>to sustain just a group of indistiguisible actress. If she
>wants to do any kind of substantial work, she needs to "go
>Hollywood."

I do concur that the British film industry isn't in the best shape presently, but to go back to an earlier reference in Charlotte Rampling - you think Beckinsale would take on a role like "The Night Porter" right now? I think that the platitudes she heaps on about aspiring to great performances will be dictated by the material (of which there's considerably more - not good, however - in Hollywood) - and she hasn't convinced me that she's willing to adhere to what she claims to believe (her selections of roles anyway)...

>Incidentally, I have different expectations for Underworld.
>Not that it's going to be a great movie, but it looks like
>good clean fun. And I think it will be a boost for KB's
>career.

Maybe RE - most reviews I've seen are pretty dismissive and I just view it as another entry of entertainment (for which there's a time and place), but definitely nothing more than that... It may embellish her career, but towards roles like the aforementioned "Night Porter," methinks not...
7406, maybe not
Posted by REDeye, Fri Sep-19-03 11:01 AM
You know, I hadn't heard her comments about things she wanted to do with her career. It's not unusual for young(ish) actors to speak of lofty, idealistic goals towards "serious" work. Some of them are even being honest when they say it. But that goes back to your question about how strong is the pull of Hollywood's money. It takes a strong will (and maybe a stronger bank account) to withstand the lure of all that money out here.

>I do concur that the British film industry isn't in the best
>shape presently, but to go back to an earlier reference in
>Charlotte Rampling - you think Beckinsale would take on a
>role like "The Night Porter" right now?

In a word, no. But maybe I'm just seeing her in the wrong light. It's not even worth mentioning her in the same breath as Rampling. Nowhere near the same class. Obviously, you might say. But the kind of filmmakers who would make The Night Porter or anything as risky as that, they also see it. I can't imagine Beckinsale getting offered those kinds of roles even if she wanted to do them. Not because she isn't a good actress, certainly not because she isn't attractive. But she has no edge. No "dark side" lurking beneath the surface.

This is why I think Underworld is a good move for her. First off, I don't know what kind of mojo her agent was working, but it's the first time her name has appeared above the title. Wasn't going to happen in any larger movies, but having it happen on a smaller on like this, even if it's just a glorified B movie, it makes people in this town take notice. They see her jumping off buildings and "dealing death" in the commercials -- never mind in the movie -- and they say, "hey, different look for her" and "wow, I didn't know she could do that sort of material." Then, if the movie actually perform (and who knows, but it should at least open at #1), then all of a sudden this cutesy little love interest chick can play dark AND open a movie. The world would be her oyster.

What she does with her career at after that is up to her. But she won't have anymore excuses.

RED
Ora et labora
7407, Wrap -
Posted by Sight and Sound, Fri Sep-19-03 01:39 PM
>What she does with her career at after that is up to her.
>But she won't have anymore excuses.

Thanks for the tete-a-tete, RE - good points all around and you're dead-on in this assessment/conclusion - there shouldn't be a litany of excuses forthcoming if her career does continue to meander aimlessly after this vehicle...
7408, Exhibit B (c) AnaStezia
Posted by epluribusunum, Fri Sep-19-03 07:20 AM
http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0936482/
7409, RE: Exhibit B (c) AnaStezia
Posted by gusto, Fri Sep-19-03 09:44 AM
Trivia
June 2003: Engaged to actress Kate Beckinsale

nuff said