Tag Archives: Johnny Depp

Feed your head

I didn’t see Johnny Depp and Mia Wasikowska’s first Alice in Wonderland movie, and doubt that I will see the sequel, although its trailers are lighting up movie theaters all over the country.

alice_through_the_looking_glass_character_poster-1

But my doubt has doubt…for two reasons.

First, the late, great Alan Rickman voices the Blue Caterpillar in Alice Through the Looking Glass, and the chance to listen to his dulcet tones is reason enough to endure the rest of the film.

Secondly, the trailer has “White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane as its soundtrack, and I could listen to that on a loop as well.

In fact, let’s do that now. Together.

Cold justice

I was lucky enough to catch Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind on HBO over dinner tonight.

eternal sunshine

Such a wonderfully inventive story, and perhaps Jim Carrey’s most powerful and controlled performance.

As I watched, I questioned yet again why he didn’t win an Oscar…or even get nominated.  So I used the Google machine to remind me — who did take the prize in 2005?

The Oscar nominees for Best Actor in a Leading Role were:

  • Don Cheadle in “Hotel Rwanda”
  • Johnny Depp in “Finding Neverland”
  • Leonardo DiCaprio in “The Aviator”
  • Clint Eastwood in “Million Dollar Baby”
  • Jamie Foxx in “Ray”

Foxx took home the prize; it was no shock.  His portrayal of the musical legend was spot-on. He sang and played the piano, too.  I wasn’t a fan of the film, but of him, yes.

I concede defeat.

But I would argue that Carrey’s performance deserves to be on that list as much if not more than Leo.  Or Johnny.  In fact, the list would be stronger for it.

Isn’t it funny how quickly you can become bitter about something that happened 10 years ago?

(Imagine how Jim must feel.)

Do what you love

Casting directors and agents in New York City often advise wannabe actors to create their own projects.

That way, they can do the kind of work that they want to be doing.

fading gigoloJust ask John Turturro.

He wrote, directed and stars in Fading Gigolo, the story of a guy with money problems who, with the encouragement and salesmanship of a good friend — portrayed by Woody Allen — finds himself the hired lover of a group of lonely middle-aged women.

It’s a great cast:  Sharon Stone, Sofia Vergara, Liev Schreiber, and in a star-making turn, Vanessa Paradis (better known as Johnny Depp’s long-time-but-not-so-much-anymore girlfriend).

The movie was very funny at times, and at other times, very serious and soulful.  The changes in pacing and tone were unexpected and unexplained.  I felt like I was watching two movies that didn’t quite gel, and there were jokes that flew over my goyish head that cracked up the rest of the art house crowd.

That being said, I enjoyed the individual performances and getting glimpses of my Upper West Side businesses and doorways in this very New York City film.

What a trip

Shia LeBeouf — of Transformers fame —  is out to prove he’s a serious actor.  And his methods are making headlines.

He’s grown out his ‘do a la Johnny Depp, obviously.  But his decision to take acid on the set of the movie The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman is perhaps a bit hairier.

His choice was inspired by the work of Sean Penn, who supposedly sat in the electric chair when filming Dead Man Walking.

Interesting.

So acting like you are on acid isn’t a choice for a serious actor?  You actually take acid instead?

Where’s the acting in that?

Contrast that decision to the recent experience of Isla Fisher, who stars in the movie Bachelorette, which opens next Friday.

When she appeared on Conan last night, she discussed how to play someone who was constantly drunk and high on cocaine…when she had never used the stuff.

She — and all the actresses in the film — would spin in place until right before action was caused.  When the camera began to roll, they were dizzy and off balance, which simulated the feeling of being high.

Wow — it was like they were acting like drunks…instead of simply getting trashed during filming.  Someone should tell Shia.

Although…there goes his excuse to drop acid.

Scare me, please

When I was but a wee lass, I watched Dark Shadows every afternoon after school.

It scared the bejeezers out of me.

Barnabas Collins, the vampire who ‘lived’ at the Collinwood estate, made me jump out of my skin.  More than once, I had to walk outside into the bright sunshine because I was too spooked to watch what happened next.

So I was particularly excited to see what horrors Tim Burton’s remake would hold, especially with his favorite lead Johnny Depp occupying the role of Barnabas.

Then I saw the trailer this weekend on television and quickly discovered…

The new Dark Shadows is a comedy.

Depp is sporting white makeup a la Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and the script appears to be one deadpan zinger after another.

True, it’s a dark comedy, and I can appreciate their sense of humor.  I’ll no doubt go see it out of curiosity at the very least.

But I’m sad to say that Depp’s version of Barnabas will never elicit a single gasp of fear or horror.

Except, perhaps, at the 70’s clothing.

Star baby

Like many of you, I loved watching the Golden Globes last night, and look forward to the many award shows yet to come.

SAG Awards.  BAFTAs.  Independent Spirit Awards.  And of course, the almighty Oscars.

But a part of the process I don’t enjoy that much is the red carpet coverage.  Sure, it’s fun to see the array of fashion do’s and don’ts, but the inane interviews make even the most beautiful gowns painful to behold.

I read a book last night instead.  (You can see the dresses during the ceremony, right?)

Perhaps if I had a red carpet history like Tyler Sercombe, I’d feel differently.

At the ripe ol’ age of one, Tyler has already been photographed with more than 130 celebrities, including Meryl Streep, George Clooney, and Johnny Depp.

Her mom Donna started taking her to premieres when she was a month old. They have been to about 60 so far.

Yep.  I’d put my book down for that.

Ah ha

Remember this year’s Golden Globe Awards?

Hard to believe they were less than a month ago.  Modern Family, Boardwalk Empire and The Social Network were the big winners, and Ricky Gervais — with his mean-spirited, low blow jokes — was the biggest loser.

Memories.

My ‘ah ha’ moment — or maybe it was more of a ‘say wha?’ — was Paul Giamatti’s win for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy for a little-known movie called Barney’s Version (He beat out Kevin Spacey, Jake Gyllenhaal and two Johnny Depp nods in the process.)

So I decided to give it a look.

Here’s one thing the Hollywood Foreign Press got right.  Giamatti is brilliant as Barney in a movie that spans four decades of his life, three marriages, and literally dozens of bad decisions.  Whoever cast Dustin Hoffman as Barney’s father must be feeling pretty smug, too, because it was nothing short of inspired.

You can make fun of the Globes all day long and be perfectly justified.  But that award alone, and the light it shone on this funny, sad, twisted, lovely film, atones for a multitude of sins.

If Barney’s Version hadn’t won a Globe, it would have no doubt languished on a couple of screens in New York and Los Angeles before calling it a day. Thanks to the Globes, you may get a chance to see it at a ‘theater near you.’

Everybody wins.