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Films, television, videos, or other visual media that's currently caught my eye ...

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

"The Amazing Race: Family Edition"

I'm watching "The Amazing Race: Family Edition".

Phil, you are quite the trickster (and a genuinely great host).

Lenz siblings, rip it up!

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Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Austin City Limits

Just saw Austin City Limits tonight, with Franz Ferdinand and What Made Milwaukee Famous.

Like 'em both. The latter more than the former.

Can't wait for the The Pixies on November 26.

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Sunday, November 06, 2005

Inside the Actors Studio: Russell Crowe

It's a two-fer ItAS kind of day!

I watched Inside the Actors Studio: Russell Crowe, and I'm impressed -- has this guy really done 25 films in 13 years? I'm amazed and inspired by people in the biz that work this hard.

I think Crowe's got a "Hollywood Bad Boy" monicker, but at least on this ItAS, he was direct, generous, and humble. Maybe he's hated because he's so direct, and cares about working, not being a metaphorical rockstar?

Anyway, particular nuggets of wisdom I got out of the interview included Crowe asserting what I already know -- it's a director's medium. As Crowe said, "It's his gig. It's her gig. You're just lucky enough to be along for the ride."

What made this particularly remarkable to me is this was Crowe's response as to when do you push your ideas for the character or the scene as an actor, and when do you bow to the director's wishes.

I also found it interesting that he advocated not falling in love with the part, because that can keep you from being objective about the character. Crowe made the argument that you need to be able to show the character's flaws, and if you fall in love with the character, you might not be willing to do that. He did say we should fall in love with the job; the acting.

I'm glad that despite his success and marquee status, Crowe's staying humble.

"Wasting time on a film set is not your privilege," he said. "Being on the film set is your privilege."

Bloody brilliant.

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Saturday, November 05, 2005

Inside the Actors Studio: Sissy Spacek

I watched Inside the Actors Studio: Sissy Spacek, this morning.

I think Spacek (Coal Miner's Daughter, Carrie, Badlands) is an amazingly solid actress (and a native Texan), and though I think she's an attractive woman, she's inspirational in her success as a self-labeled "Hollywood ugly duckling". This gives me hope.

Though I like Spacek, this ItAS wasn't all that engaging.

Could have been me, though ...

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Inside the Actors Studio: Robin Williams

I caught up the Inside the Actors Studio with Robin Williams.

The guy is brilliant and amazing, unstructured but rich in continuity ...

"Legalized insanity", he calls it.

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Friday, November 04, 2005


I watched Bewitched tonight.

OK, to put aside a bias real quick -- do we really need to remake these shows? Either it was good, and doesn't need to be redone (Bewitched), or they bit at the time, and shouldn't be redone (*cough* guilty-pleasure-Dukes-of-Hazard).

That said, Bewitched really wasn't bad.

The premise is clever -- it's a movie about trying to remake the 1960s series, and it's done pretty well.

It's a better SNL alumn film than Fever Pitch, which I watched the other night.

Will Ferrell is entertaining. Nicole Kidman is a joy to watch. Michael Caine is an inspiration, Jason Schwartzman is underused as Ritchie. And I'm not sure there could be better casting for Iris Smythson/Endora than Shirley MacLaine.

And though I felt this was a better film than Fever Pitch, it felt like the premise and story would have been better served as an episode (maybe a pilot episode) of a TV series, rather than a movie.

What did strike me about both Bewitched and Fever Pitch is it is SNL alumns joining alumn Adam Sandler, acting along Hollywood leads.

Though it's not one of my explicit acting goals, I think if I had the chance to do a film with Drew Barrymore or Nicole Kidman or Michael Caine, I'd experience a of version of, "Huh. I've sort of arrived."

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Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Fever Pitch

I just saw Fever Pitch on DVD the other night, and am a bit disappointed.

Overall, the flick isn't real strong, and though Jimmy Fallon's performance is pretty solid and believable throughout, I don't know what happened to Drew Barrymore.

This wasn't Never Been Kissed Drew. It wasn't 50 First Dates Drew. It wasn't even Titan A.E. Drew.

It was kind of ... wooden, unconnected Drew.

And I like Drew Barrymore. Just not in this film. Didn't feel like she was having fun. Or had anything to lose.

On the upside, watch Jimmy Fallon for some moments showcasing some neat acting chops for the guy.

And the DVD gag reel is lame, and the deleted scenes hurt to watch.

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