Saving Mr. Banks

cinema theoretica
Saving Mr. Banks
Saving Mr. Banks Trailer
Notations by Jennifer Kiley
Created 23rd January 2014
Posted On Friday 31st January 2014
CINEMA THEORETICA

movies-saving-mr-banks-poster

The books and the film are different. We are talking about Mary Poppins. Most adaptations end up going into changes. Different mediums. Learn to allow the transition into your purview. When very young, I read P.L. Travers books written about Mary Poppins.

savings mr banks  the real mary poppins

The real Mary Poppins played by Rachel Griffith in Mary Poppins

When the movie came out, I never really connected the books to the film. Same name, Mary Poppins, but not the character I remember in anyway. I love them both but differently. They were the good moments I remember being a child. Reading and seeing movies.

saving mr banks p.l at desk walt talking to her

Saving Mr Banks Emma Thompson as P.L. Travers and Tom Hanks as Walt Disney

Movies were on the TV, not in the cinema. Not until I was at least approaching the age to babysit. Then I went to see the Beatles and Mary Poppins and two other Julie Andrews films she had released during that same time period.

saving-mr-banks walt & travers at disneyland

Saving Mr Banks Walt Disney and P.L. Travers at Disneyland

I was hooked on Mary Poppins from the books. But then it transferred over to being Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins, and I adored her. There was always adventure in the books and of course in the movie, overflowing in abundance.

saving-mr-banks carousel p.l. & walt

Saving Mr Banks P.L. Travers on Carousal. Walt Disney won his bet to get her on a ride.

P.L Travers felt Walt Disney took the darker side of Mary Poppins out of her character. At the beginning of the film, Saving Mr. Banks, precedes Walt Disney even having the rights to use P.L. Travers’ Mary Poppins. From all the talk, it seems Mr. Disney took advantage of P.L. Travers need for money. She had little power to negotiate but did it for real and really didn’t want to have to give. Disney knew somehow he would get what he wanted even though it seemed at time, P.L Travers was going to reject any deal. This was in her heart to do, to refuse. Plus a great deal was riding on Walt Disney sealing the deal. He promised his daughters he would make their favorite children’s story of Mary Poppins into a film. It took 20 years.

saving mr banks p.l. not happy with disney take on m.p.

Saving Mr Banks Emma Thompson as P.L. Travers not happy with Walt Disney’s take on Mary Poppins

I am looking forward with excitement, to see Saving Mr. Banks. Emma Thompson as P.L. Travers seems a real hoot. My three favorite things that came out of all this. That would be Emma Thompson, Mary Poppins and her creator P.L. Travers, and Julie Andrews. Julie Andrews being a nanny saved my childhood. She played my favorite nannies, Mary Poppins and Maria in The Sound of Music. For myself as a child, I would have loved having a nanny over my parents any day. No questions.

saving mr banks walt disney

Saving Mr Banks Tom Hanks as Walt Disney

The story of the take over of Mary Poppins by the Powerful and Famous Walt Disney.

SAVING MR. BANKS TRAILER

Saving Mr. Banks Trailer

saving-mr.-banks pl travers

Saving Mr Banks Emma Thompson as P.L. Travers

PG-13, 2 hr.

Drama, Comedy

Emma Thompson …………P.L. Travers

Tom Hanks …………….Walt Disney

Colin Farrell …………Robert Goff Travers

Bradley Whitford ………Don DaGradi

Paul Giamatti …………Ralph

Jason Schwartzman ……..Richard Morton Sherman

Ruth Wilson …………..Margaret Goff

B.J. Novak ……………Robert Sherman

Kathy Baker …………..Tommie

Rachel Griffiths ………Aunt Ellie

Annie Rose Buckley …….Ginty

Original Photo of the Walt Disney film Mary Poppins

Original Photo from the Walt Disney Film Mary Poppins with Julie Andrews & Dick Van Dyke during Step In Time number.

The Best Offer

cinema theoretica
The Best Offer
Research by Jk the secret keeper
Written by Jennifer Kiley
Created 15th January 2014
Posted Friday 17th January 2014
CINEMA THEORETICA

The Best Offer Trailer w/ Geoffrey Rush & Donald Sutherland

the best offer  in restaurant b4 birth day

I was able to watch 10 minutes of this film on a Preview Clip. It is not available yet outside of the theatre on DVD. It is on SAME DAY AS THEATRE for $8.00 HD. For the view into the elements of “The Best Offer,” I was intrigued just watching Geoffrey Rush in the opening moments, alone, sitting properly at a table, in a restaurant of a high reputation, I am sure, in England. Just watching him sit is a curious moment. We discover an important fact regarding his inner life and outer as well. It is his birthday the next day but the wait staff bring him a superbly made dessert with one candle already lit. He watches as the candle burns down. He must leave before Midnight but is sure to inform the wait staff to let the dessert staff know how pleased he is with the cake.

FADE OUT

the best offer poster

He walks into his office. It is his birthday. It has circulated he cannot abide Mobile Phones. So, he received only one in his packages this year.

The phone rings. He answers but pretends to be his assistant. A woman is urgent to speak with him. Her father highly recommended him as the one to handle their estate antiques and art work. She is frantic to have him accept the request. He is intrigued but doesn’t reveal his identity nor does he commit himself to meeting with her.

FADE OUT

the best offer   his portrait room

Auction. He is taking the bids on an antique from the time of Galileo. It brings in over a $Million Euros. The next item is a portrait of a young lady, in her lower teen years. She looks innocent. The bidding starts. This is when Donald Sutherland gets in on the proceedings. D.S. wins the bid for $10,000 Euros. After all is finished, D.S. meets with Him, G.R., in his rooms. He is examining the painting. At first, I thought maybe there was a famous painting under this young lady. But now I am not sure. He gives D.S. a handful of money. I deduct from them both that D.S.’s character is a painter. It gets a bit vague as the scene ends.

FADE OUT

the best offer   geoffrey rush & woman co star

He, G.R., is sitting in a room. As the camera scans and he follows the eye of the camera, we are seeing walls filled with portraits of women of all ages and eras. The curiosity mounts when you view the scan of the immensity of all the portraits. I wondered whether he came upon them in a manner not suiting his position.

There is a sense of mystery in this film. It has me wanting to see this as soon as it becomes available in the way in which I like to watch my cinema.

Out of curiosity, it is my kind of film with a touch of film noir, a woman who is withdrawn from the world who his seeking Him, G.R., out. He eventually, does become interested in the mystery. It has all the elements of a film I would choose to want to see.

Since I have only seen a small length of “The Best Offer,” I can only cast a “cinema theoretica” guess. I would want to see this film. I will when I am able and give an addition to this review. Until then, if you want to see “The Best Offer,” it is suppose to be in theatres and it is available with Xfinity On Demand for a FEE. [Xfinity is Comcast].

[BEST IS FIVE - 5 - ! ! ! ! ! ]

Good Movie Watching . :-)
By Jennifer Kiley

Sliding Doors

[Original Written for Expats Post. Will Be Published Early Monday 30th December 2013]

Sliding-Doors-1998-poster

Sliding Doors
Film Review by Jennifer Kiley
Created on 26th December 2013
Posted on Friday 27th December 2013
FILM FRIDAY

“No one expects the Spanish Inquisition” — Monty Python

What if your life split into two timelines? In one timeline, you make your morning train, the other, someone mugs you, smashes your head into a tree, a kind British taxi driver takes you to the hospital. The split completely alters the experiences of your two lives, two different synchronicities. In one reality, you get fired, in the other, you don’t make it to work. You come home early, the other, you don’t make it home until the correct amount of time later. After things at home have time to move into a different moment, creating an alternate future, causing two parallel realities.

gwynnie sliding doors blond short hair

The film, Sliding Doors, involves Helen [Gwyneth Paltrow] meeting a new man, while still living with Gerry [John Lynch], One timeline remains with Gerry, a novelist, she is supporting. He is supposed to be writing his novel. In the other timeline, things come to an abrupt conclusion.

It’s a brilliantly conceived realistic fantasy, totally believable. How it all turns out, is well worth the time put in to watching, as the two realities evolve. Ultimately, turning out an ending with a twist. The whole film is one twisted curve. The story is enchanted. You make your choices. It’s was easy for me. It makes my best and favorites list. What is not to crave and love?

Sliding Doors after helen and james meet on train

The complexity, a brilliantly written screenplay, superb acting by a fine cast. Gwyneth Paltrow [Helen] and John Hannah [James] are in top form. John Hannah is someone with whom to fall in love. He is a genuinely fine and sensitive actor. His first film that appeared outside the UK was Four Weddings and a Funeral. His reading of W.H. Auden’s Funeral Blues was an especially painful, yet tender moment.

sliding doors james in diner

John Lynch and Jeanne Tripplehorn play the jesters, though irritating characters, carry off their roles sadly, pathetically, yet comically. It is impossible not to feel these two are not exactly on your favorite characters list. But there is always a need for antagonists. And most times you don’t like them, yet can appreciate their need in the film, or where would be the negative for the positive to repel? .

Lydia [Jeanne Tripplehorn] is a tremendous pain and cruel to boot. Gerry [John Lynch], the man Helen lives with is a ball-less, unfaithful, pathetic jerk. These are my truthful prejudices.

Sliding-Doors-john-hannah gwyneth

In the timeline, where Helen gets to know James life and becomes an integral part. This is the life I enjoy watching develop the most. If you decide to watch the film Sliding Doors, and I highly recommend it, you will be following a journey through regrouping and beginning your life from the start again. The alternate timelines are living inside of a blindness to what is happening around them.

sliding-doors helen james in diner h having milkshake

Movie Connections: Sliding Doors — John Hannah [James]

Altering time is fascinating. Watching new possibilities grow, while you are living your life as it was given to you. At the same exact time being given a new life while the old life continues in an almost similar direction, just arriving separately.

The ending, I won’t even go anywhere near what happens there. I do recommend “you start at the beginning until you come to the end, then stop.” —Lewis Carroll. It is well worth the journey. Without telling you the culmination of the story, I will say it is imaginative.

Sliding Doors is fascinating to watch. Curious how it makes you feel. You will route for Helen all the way, but which one? What will you think of James? He has his secrets as well. There are secrets everywhere. Characters you just don’t like. Maybe I am being too judgmental but some behaviors are really not honorable.

sliding doors james helen sitting on train first meeting

Sliding Doors is definitely about love. Real love. I am not sure if Gerry knows what he feels. You, as the audience, decide that conclusion. I am not enamored of him. Where my allegiances lie, I haven’t hidden. But my letting that out will not give you any idea what this story is trying to share. Feeling love and caring and knowing when you see it and feel it.

I keep returning to the ending. It surprised me the first time I watched Sliding Doors. It may surprise everyone who watches it. The creativity of the mind who created this story, must be very fertile. I love when someone writes something so different. Something one has not seen in a film before. An original concept, playing with time, in the way Sliding Doors plays it through.

slidingdoors helen at closed train doors

Anyone who likes imagination, thinking, going with the possibilities, being able to expect the unusual and to be able to accept the unique, will love Sliding Doors.

It is a film one can watch more than once. Why? Some films create such ponderings in the mind one needs a dose of their originality to sooth the soul and to believe in the genius of originality. It still truly exists in a world of film on the edge of losing its ability to create plenty of room for new ideas. They sneak in here or there.

Sliding Doors is made for the romantic as well as the psychologically prone individual. The interaction between Helen and James is an invitation to see how feelings slowly develop within a natural growth. The depth of love and feelings are real and should not chase away the male viewer. It is a thinking person’s film. Don’t be afraid of the romance.sliding doors helen short blond hair looking in from the sidewalk

The other side of the film is either funny or irritating but in a way that holds the viewer’s attention. For me, I just want to slap some sense into Lydia and Gerry. He is an ass and she is not much higher on the evolutionary ladder.

I prize this film. Obviously, the parts that are irritating would accentuate after you’ve watched this film often enough. Even so, the rest of the film is well worth viewing as often as possible.

The two Helens are reacting so differently and anyone near her lives are different, also. Everyone has to change their perspective on what is real. Keeping them organized is not complicated, instead it is a curious experience to see the different performances.

One more film on my list of films I watch whenever I find the time. It is, to me, like looking into a great work of art, each view you see more deeply into what your senses are perceiving. Each perception brings on different feelings and reactions on other sense levels. Losing myself in the art is a love affair. Losing may not be the most accurate word, pleasure is more succinct. There is emotional pleasure and an indescribable response in experiencing art.

james holding helen

For me, film can most assuredly be considered art. It has such an availability of ranges, in which to explore the mind, the imagination, to express emotions, thoughts, concepts, ideas, non-sense, and a letting go of creativity. To develop a conversation, acting out a concept, to see where it will lead in opening one’s mind to something deeper or new.

Sliding Doors is this film. It is art. It creates a possibility of fantasy, which could hold a particle of truth within its idea of playing with time.

sliding_doors_helen 1st reality

“Always look on the bright side of life.” I love the mentions of Monty Python. What they say and do in their work, mostly non-sense, is filled with humor and ridiculosity.

Sliding Doors asks you to suspend your concept of reality, step into a moment of fantasy and allow that to have possibilities. Go with where it takes you. Accept its consequences.

“No one expects the Spanish Inquisition” — Monty Python

Sliding Doors Trailer

Sliding Doors
Cast:
Helen: Gwyneth Paltrow
James: John Hannah
Gerry: John Lynch
Lydia: Jeanne Tripplehorn

Directed & Written by Peter Howitt [Antitrust with Ryan Philippe, Tim Robbins, and Rachel Leigh Cook. An extreme thriller in the intrigue of super-computers, programmers, inventive ideas, murder, and an exciting film to watch. Edge of the seat philosophy film-making. One I shall watch again really soon & highly recommend for the film viewer who wants excitement with their popcorn. Eat slowly so you don’t choke. Available Free through Redbox Subscription using Roku. Will review in near Future].

Year: [1998]
99m R
Available Presently [26th Dec. 2013]
Amazon Instant Video or Purchase Amazon.com

THE END

Dead Again

dead-again-dvd-cover-great poster also roman & margaret
Dead Again
Film Review by Jennifer Kiley
Illustrated by j. kiley
Created Thursday 12th Dec. 2013
Posted On Friday 13th Dec. 2013
FILM FRIDAY
5 stars
dedicated to roger ebert film fridayDead Again

[Life after love. Love after life.]

After the title “Dead Again,” the film opens with the word MURDER. Followed by headlines of the murder mixed amongst the opening credits. Headline: STRAUSS ARRESTED. TRIAL OPENS TODAY. STRAUSS FOUND GUILTY December 10th 1949. STRAUSS GETS DEATH. Strauss begins singing a lament in the background toward the end of the credits. Fade In to Roman Strauss [Kenneth Branagh] getting a haircut. He is visited by one member of the press Mr. Gray Baker [Andy Garcia].

Roman Strauss wants a favor from Mr. Baker. After all he has been writing all about his arrest, trial, guilty verdict and his death sentence. Mr. Gray Baker owed Roman Strauss to print his request of an exact quote, “I loved my wife and that I love her forever.”

Roman continues to talk when Mr. Baker asks him, “You truly believe you are lucky to die?”

Roman looks intently at Mr. Baker. His response is, “This is all far from over.”

“But you still killed her?” Mr. Gray Baker asks Roman. Strauss gives Mr. Baker a kiss behind the ear. Gray Baker is an important character to follow.

Roman Strauss is then taken away.

Kenneth-Branagh-dead again w scissors

There is commotion as Strauss walks down the hall to face his death. At the end of the hall, Roman raises his hand. As he brings it down, he shouts, “These are for you.”

roman w scissors these are for you

The past is very Film Noir and Gothic, [In opening, an inside joke, the date 12/10/49, it is Kenneth Branagh’s birthday]. The film has the influences such as Laura by Preminger, Wells, and Hitchcock’s Rebecca. The ideas of hypnosis, regression and reincarnation scared other directors away from making this film. With the script by Scott Frank [later to write the screenplay for "Get Shorty," "Minority Report," "Marley & Me," "The Wolverine," plus others], in the “Dead Again” script, there is an undercurrent of humor, and a flow into the dark side.

dead again mike take emma'c chr to asylum til she is claimed by someone

When we enter the present, a woman wakes up screaming. Camera switches to the classic Gothic gates, a la Citizen Kane, with a large G-Clef in the center where the iron gates close. [Remember the G-clef]. She is staying at a Catholic Orphanage. The priest wants her out. The kind nun caring for her argues she has no place to go. He gives her the name Mike Church. Tells her to contact him. He owes the priest favors. An good, honest name for a P.I. whose haunt is LA, he drives a red, convertible sports car. His main focus is missing persons. He accepts the case of the mysterious screaming woman [Emma Thompson]. First thing he discovers is she has amnesia and is unable to speak.

Dead Again

A stranger shows up at Mike’s door the day he has placed an ad hoping someone will know who the screaming woman is. He is a hypnotist who wants to help Mike discover her identity. He tries some hypnosis, to Mike’s objections, but almost immediately gets some results. She screams out some words, then reverts back to being unable to speak.

dead again emma b4 her voice comes back

The hypnotist, Franklyn Madson, [Derek Jacobi], offers his assistance. Mike brings his mystery woman to the “Laughing Duke,” an antique shop where Madson hypnotizes his clients to locate antiques while he has them under. Mike wants to see if he will be able to help solve the mystery of her amnesia, her inability to speak, and what exactly are her nightmares.

dead again antique shop meet psychic derek j seance takes place

While under hypnosis she begins having what appear to be flashbacks. She is taken to taken to the past where she begins remembering Roman Strauss with his wife Margaret. It is as if she were actually there with him. Her descriptions come from the effects of the hypnosis. She talks of Roman and Margaret’s wedding and of their careers. Margaret’s is flourishing while Roman’s struggling with his career in the US. He tries to compose his own music but it isn’t coming and offers to score films aren’t successful either. His music is too good. He had to leave his homeland in Europe. He was ill and his wife died. His personal housekeeper, Inga and her son, Frankie, were able to get him to the States successfully.

dead-again seance

At the reception, Margaret has a talk with Inga and Frankie. She reminded them they were to have moved their living quarters to another part of the mansion before the wedding. Inga questions her, saying that Mr. Strauss had not asked them to. Margaret made it clear she was now Roman’s wife and it made no difference, they must listen to her.

dead again seance derek mike candle dont see emma

Roman is madly in love with Margaret. For their marriage, he gives her a special gift, an anklet. Moments later, Madson brings her out of the trance. While he is talking to Mike, she speaks, asking for a glass of water. All are thrilled. Madson is all excited about what came out of the trance. He shows them a Life magazine with photos of the marriage of Roman Strauss and to his wife Margaret. The mystery woman looks a great deal like Margaret. Her amnesia is still very much intact and is confused by it all.

dead-again-1991 emma w roman conducting orchestra roman not in shot

The hypnosis continues with Mike joining in by going under, both are bringing up effective results, and some revelations are very unusual. The strongest memory coming from the screams in her nightmares. They involve the murder of a pianist, Margaret, by her husband Roman Strauss in late 1948. After this result, when the session is finished for the day, Madson calls out to a voice, saying, “In a moment, mother.”

dead-again-garcia

Mike takes her to see Cozy Carlisle [Robin Williams], a former psychiatrist, but lost his license. After Mike explains the session she just had, the Doc tells them it sounds like past life regression. “Sometimes a trauma in a past life can lead you to a trauma in a present life.” “Karma. You burn someone in a past life they turn around and burn you in this life.”

Dead-again- mike church  & emma

Some simple memories return to her, but nothing substantial. Mike gets some help from his friend, Pete [Wayne Knight] at the newspaper, who placed the first ad. And Mike starts looking into the story of Roman Strauss through old copies of newspapers, specifically the articles, which there are a plethora, written by Mr. Gray Baker [Andy Garcia]. She says “Hello” to Pete. He thinks her voice is great.

dead again mike emma consult w robin he is a psychiatrist lost license

Mike takes her out to eat at a beach café, where they start to bond. He pretends to read the tea leaves for her. This is a fun scene, and when he christens her “Grace.” Rain starts shortly there after, and a romantic moment unfolds.

dead-again mike & emma in rain when out for meal

Weirdos keep coming out of the woodwork, trying to confuse “Grace’s” recovery. But the work with Madson, the hypnotist continues. Time to travel back in time to Roman and Margaret. The excitement keeps building from frame to frame, scene to scene, and reel to reel. The past is just as enthralling as the present.

dead-again- roman & margaret toasting

Fitting the pieces together in the past of Roman and Margaret, leads back into the present with Mike and “Grace.” What do they have to do with the other? Is there any connection between Margaret and “Grace?” And what about Mike Church? How does he fit into any of this?

Dead-Again roman & margaret

It is a finely designed film, with heightened emotions building up as piece by piece everything eventually falls together. You need to allow the tension to build and the mind to be free of any preconceived notions of what you think is real and possible. Do not forget any characters. The script is so tightly written and played out, every nuance is important to remember. I have seen the film “Dead Again” multiple times. It holds me spellbound every time.

DeadAgain  psychi giving emma's char small pistol to protect herself

Keep the past fresh in your mind as you watch the present unfolding. Watch out for the danger. Trust no one. Suspect everyone. There is a scene, I promise, I won’t give it away. I will just say you will make a face and go, “Wwwwhhhhhoooooaaaaa!!!” Not sure if that is the exact sound everyone will make.

dead again emma's chrs home on top

My favorite line of the film is: “Well, I, for one am very interested in seeing what is going to happen next.”

Emma Thompson is magnificently strong as Margaret and brilliantly delicate, blowing the audience away as “Grace.” It was my first Emma Thompson experience. I didn’t know her at all. I fell in love at first site and continue to love her today. She is an exceptional actor and screenwriter.

dead-again-1991 emma trying to call for help

Kenneth Branagh is exceptionally tender, plus scary as Roman Strauss and gently forceful, as well as a persistent protector as Mike Church. Kenneth had another extremely important role, he is the Director of “Dead Again.” So, he played a German composer, an American P.I., directed the film “Dead Again,” and he is excellent in all the parts he undertook.

dead-again emma's character in danger

A very dynamic duo, Emma Thompson and Kenneth Branagh. Where were the Awards? There should have been awards. Plus they are British doing the roles of three Americans and one German.

These were my theatre days, when I just picked out a film that sounded good. Choosing “Dead Again,” what a perfect decision. It didn’t just sound good, it is a fantastic film. Edge of the seat from the first scene until the very last moment. I give this 5***** stars out five.

This movie is from the 1990’s. Every aspect is excellent from the script, its direction, performances, music, editing, it grabs hold of you and lifts you up into the ride of your life. Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson, [when “Dead Again” was made, Kenneth and Emma were husband and wife], played two roles in the past and two roles in the present. Past and present required separate clothing designs, hairstyles, and British accents turned into American for both and one character in German for Kenneth. The jewel on top was their parts were of two people in love and destined to be together forever.

I love “Dead Again” from the second the projector starts rolling the very first time. Every second of it a ride through a thriller, love story, character development, and a lasting treasure.

Dead Again — Trailer — Emma Thompson-Kenneth Branagh-Derek Jacobi

Directed by Kenneth Branagh

Kenneth Branagh as Roman Strauss / Mike Church
Emma Thompson as Grace / Margaret Strauss
Andy Garcia as Gray Baker
Derek Jacobi as Franklyn Madson
Wayne Knight as ‘Piccolo’ Pete Dugan
Hanna Schygulla as Inga
Campbell Scott as Doug
Robin Williams as Doctor Cozy Carlisle

Mystery/Thriller
Rated R
English
1991
107 min

Best Film of All Time #6 — Casablanca

casablanca poster

Best Film of All Time #6 — Casablanca
Review Written by Jennifer Kiley
Posted Created On 15th January
Posted On Friday 6th December 2013
FILM FRIDAY

SPOILERS SPRINKLED THROUGH REVIEW BUT ENDING NOT GIVEN AWAY

5 stars dedicated to roger ebert film friday

“Here’s looking at you kid.”

There are so many memorable lines and scenes in the film Casablanca.

Casablanca (1942) – Directed by Michael Curtiz

Starring: Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine, Ingrid Bergman as Ilsa Lund, Peter Lorre as Ugarte, Claude Raines as Louie – (Head of Police/Rick’s Friend), Paul Henreid as Victor Laszlo, Sydney Greenstreet as Ferrari – Proprietor of the night club The Blue Parrot.

Just one of the fifty films a studio would make each year back in the day. Casablanca was just one of those films thrown into that collection. Who knew it would spring forth and become the success that it is. Today, it is considered one of the top romantic films of all time.

Won for Best Picture Oscar 1942. One of the most universally admired films ever made. On most lists of the greatest films of all times. Even people who don’t like old films or black and white films love Casablanca. Roger Ebert said he doesn’t think he’s heard of any negative reviews of this film ever. All the characters are all good except the Nazis. Vichy are the French who collaborate with the Nazis.

Rick’s Cafe Americain in Casablanca in French Morocco, where everyone went for entertainment or to hang out for a drink or to go to the back room where there is gambling going on. Here, in Casablanca, some may obtain exit visas but others may wait and wait and wait. At the beginning of the film, you find out that some couriers were killed in the desert and robbed of exit visas. Officials wanting to see a man’s papers, causes the man to freak out, his papers are not in order, so he runs and is shot and killed because he didn’t halt when ordered to.

Life is meaningless in Casablanca.

When Louie, the head of the police, is asked by Major Strasser, what is being done about the murder of the couriers, his answer is: “We’ve rounded up the usual suspects.” No one likes Nazis and the head of the Nazis in this movie doesn’t make them any more popular and maybe makes them even less popular. The Marseillaise is the present day French National Anthem. Remember that when you watch Casablanca.

Ugarte shows up and talks to Rick. Wants to have a drink with Rick but as a rule he doesn’t drink with any of the guests of his night club. Ugarte likes to brag to Rick. He just is looking for Rick’s approval but knows that Rick despises him but he is the only person that Ugarte trusts. Rick does finally seem impressed with him. You’ll have to watch the movie to find out why.

Ferrari wants Rick’s place. He is always trying to buy it. It’s the best place in town. Sasha hangs out there and is sort of Rick’s girl friend and is a bit of an alcoholic. It’s understandable she wants to drink the times are during the 2nd World War and it is making everyone edgy and the French are being ruled by the Germans.

Louie and Rick get involved in a conversation and Louie asks why Rick came to such a God Forsaken place like Casablanca. Rick’s a smart ass and says: “It’s for the water.” But, of course, it is a desert. Rick’s is permitted to stay open because he just doesn’t want to get involved. But he has in his hands something that a lot of people are looking for but no one has any idea what that is. Louie tells Rick there is a famous patriot of the war headed for Casablanca. A member of the Gestapo, Major Strasser, is expected at the club. He is a thoroughly disagreeable Nazis but then what Nazi isn’t. That I may say often.

A major happening occurs at Rick’s but he reassures everyone to settle down and get back into enjoying themselves. Rick actually sits down with the Nazis. The Nazis make mention about invading New York. Rick warns them about staying away from certain sections of New York. They may not be safe. They start in talking about Victor Lazslo being on his way. Rick assuring them that he doesn’t plan on getting involved.

Victor Laszlo and Ilsa Lund eventually show up as expected and walk through the cafe and take a seat in the night club. Expect that many will be approaching Victor fairly often because of his importance and how nervous they make the Nazis. Ilsa starts asking about the piano player and who owns the Night Club. Louie tells her it is a man named Rick. Major Strasser is introduced and acts like the ass that he is. Starts applying his power over Laszlo.

It is evident that Ilsa and Victor are close but at this time we know nothing of their relationship other then they are traveling together. Victor leaves her at table to meet a man at the bar and finds out about Ugarte.

Ilsa wants to speak to the piano player. His name is Sam and she asks him to play some of the old songs. There is a sadness between Sam regarding Rick. She wants him to play a the song “As Time Goes By.” Sam sings the song for her. Out comes Rick telling Sam he’s not suppose to play that song. Rick sees Ilsa sitting at her table. The last time Rick saw Ilsa was in Paris when the Germans marched in to take over the city. He was unnerved seeing her again. He was so not himself that he actually had a drink with all at the table breaking his precedent of not drinking with guests of the night club The Americain.

Later back in his rooms, Rick has a bottle, and tells Sam he is not planning on going to bed. He thinks Ilsa is going to show up. Sam isn’t going to leave his boss alone. He starts getting maudlin. “Of all the gin joints in all the world, she walks into mine.” He wants Sam to play “As Time Goes By.” Sam doesn’t want to open the wounds.

Flashback: Paris with Rick and Ilsa driving around in a convertible. then down by the Seine. In the hotel drinking champagne. “Who are you really and what were you before and what did you think?” Ricks asks. Ilsa’s response: “We said no questions.” All the best lines in these scenes. So many to write down and remember. She reveals an answer without the question. Watch the movie to find out what she told Rick.

Outside, newspapers are being passed around. The Germans are coming I believe are the headlines and what they are saying in French over the microphones. There is a lot of action going on out in the streets.

The most famous line is spoken by Rick toasting champagne with Sam and Ilsa: “Here’s looking at you kid.” Everything is falling apart. “Where were you ten years ago?” Rick said he was looking for a job. For some reason there is a price on Rick’s head but no one knows why. It’s time for everyone to leave Paris. Their suppose to meet at the train station from where they will be leaving. Ilsa loves him so much and the war, she hates that in just the opposite emotion. She thinks that they will be taken apart. “Kiss me as if it is the last time.”

It’s raining at the train station. With three minutes until last train leaves. No Ilsa but Sam and Rick are waiting. There is a note from the Hotel. Fade Out Paris Train Station as you watch the rain wash the ink off of the note in Rick’s hand.

Fade In: Rick’s Rooms enter Ilsa. She wants to talk to him, to tell him a story. It’s about a girl who meets a man, a very courageous man. She looked up to him. She thought it was love. Who did she leave him for? Laszlo or others in between?

Victor and Ilsa meet Strasser at Police station. Strasser guarantees Laszlo will never receive an exit visa. His only way to leave is to be a traitor to his people. Do you really think he is the type of man to be a traitor. Nazis have no sense of integrity so they do not understand an enigma like Victor Laszlo. An important person to their leaving has been reported to be dead.

Rick visits The Blue Parrot and talks with Ferrari, who wants the letters of transit. He tells Rick he thinks he knows where the letters are. Rick purposely left his club so the police would have a chance to ransack it. Louie’s men were impressively destructive at Rick’s Place in order to win points with Major Strasser. Louie blows with the wind. He is with the Vichy. The Vichy being the French who go along with the Nazis and reluctantly support the French. The French who are loyal to their own country feel betrayed by the Vichy.

A young woman comes to Rick to plead for some help. She will have to sleep with Louie if her husband doesn’t win enough money so they can afford a visa. If they use only the money they have there would be nothing left. Louise fully expects her to have sex with him if the money isn’t won. Louie sees that the young woman and Rick are being obvious about conspiring. They are all in the backroom where the gambling goes on. Louie is an odd duck. Louie accuses Rick of being a rank sentimentalist.

Victor has a visit with Rick. The Underground tell Victor all sorts of very impressive things about activities that Rick was involved in during the war.

In Rick’s Cafe, the Nazis are singing about the Fatherland. It is so despicable to the French in the club that they have a singing competition. Guess who wins. Strasser is not very satisfied. He tells Louie to find an excuse to close Rick’s. He tells Rick the reason is because he is shocked that gambling is going on in his club.

Strasser just keeps getting creepier when he threatens Ilsa.

Later Ilsa and Victor speak about the letters of transit and what Rick said about asking his wife why he won’t give up the letters.

Ilsa goes to Rick’s rooms and tries to get letters from him. She wants to tell him what really happened in Paris. The feelings between them, have they been buried or are they gone? The truth comes out. She had no hope that Victor was alive when she was in Paris with Rick.

Victor and Rick talk. They are not that far apart in what they believe.

Louie and Rick talk about letters. Louie doesn’t like Strasser.

Approaching the final few scenes of the film. Cafe Americain is still closed by order of the Prefect of Police. Ferrari has taken over the Cafe. Louie thinks he is at Cafe to arrest Laszlo but Rick surprises him and makes him call the airport to tell them that there is to be no trouble about two letters of transit. Everything is building up to the excitement of what is all going to culminate in some of the biggest surprises yet in the film.

Best closing scenes in any movie and best closing lines. Memorable til the final line.

For the rest of the film and to fill in all the spaces that I have left out, you will need to find a copy of this film on DVD or streaming from online or whatever source you are able to find to watch the whole thing and to see how it ends. It is a thoroughly amazing film to watch. It seems the perfect film in detail, dialogue, scenes, settings, storyline, acting and durability. It has all the perfect elements and the best acting. Filled with sentiment and sacrifice. I first saw this film when I was in my 20s. It was such a surprise that I did not see it when I was a kid. It is understandable for older children and a fascinating film for all adults.

The following videos do have SPOILERS so watch them if you have seen the film already or if you don’t mind seeing scenes before seeing the film. I am sure a great many of you have watched this film. But if you haven’t, it should be on everyone’s’ film list as a must see. The sheer acting alone and the love story and the screenplay is brilliant. The cast is to die for. Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman play the leads. They are two of the finest actors of all times. Worthy of anyone’s time to find out how great they are in Casablanca.

No one had any idea what a remarkable film this was going to turn out to be. The special benefit of this film is you get to hate the Nazis and you get to curse them out without impunity. It has the most classic lines of almost any film ever made. Enjoy the videos and seriously consider locating this film if you haven’t seen it and find it so you can watch it again. “Here’s Looking At You Kid.” —Written by Jennifer Kiley

Tribute To Casablanca
Filled With Spoilers

Casablanca La Marseillaise

All About the Classic Movie “Casablanca”

Best Film Ever #9: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Cat-on-a-Hot-Tin-Roof-Poster
Best Film Ever #9: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Film Review by Don Kaye [Rotten Tomatoes]
Post Create by Jk the secret keeper
Illustrated by j. kiley
Post Created on Thursday 7th November 2013
Posted On Friday 8th November 2013
FILM FRIDAY

5 stars

dedicated to roger ebert film friday

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) elizabeth in gold bed

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Adapted from Tennessee Williams Play

This dynamic and commanding adaptation of Tennessee Williams’ Pulitzer Prize-winning play focuses on a troubled Southern family and the discord over their dying father’s millions.

Cat-on-a-hot-tin-roof elizabeth holding gold bed frame

Wealthy plantation owner Big Daddy Pollitt (Burl Ives), celebrating his 65th birthday, is visited by his sons, Brick (Paul Newman) and Gooper (Jack Carson).

cat paul & elizabeth in slip & robe

He has cancer, but a doctor has deliberately and falsely declared it in remission. Seemingly perfect son Gooper and his wife, Mae (Madeleine Sherwood), have several children and are anxiously expecting to inherit Daddy’s millions.

cat elizabeth yelling at paul

By contrast, Big Daddy’s “favorite,” Brick, is a has-been football star who’s taken to drinking his days away since the suicide of his “best friend” a year earlier.

Archives: Elizabeth Taylor in United States on April 04th, 1998.

He resents his wife, Maggie (Elizabeth Taylor), because he believes that she had an affair with his deceased friend. As a result, he refuses to sleep with her, although she remains devoted to him.

cat paul w glass in hand sitting on floor

Since Brick and Maggie have failed to produce any grandchildren, Big Daddy is inclined to leave his estate to Gooper, but Maggie attempts to prevent that by telling him that she is pregnant.

Cat on a Hot Tine Roof [Elizabeth Taylor & Paul Newman talking]

Big Daddy knows better, yet he recognizes that Maggie loves Brick so much that she would be willing to do anything for him.

CatTinRoof_paul w glass elizabeth talking

Although Brick is self-destructive and resentful, unable to come to terms with his losses, it takes Big Daddy’s recognition of his own mortality to make Brick change his perspective.

NewmanCatOnTinRoof taylor b&w

Brick’s struggle with his sexual identity, and the nature of his relationship with his “friend,” had to be toned down for mass consumption, although this intelligently written and acted film covers such topics as infertility, adultery, and alcoholism that were still considered taboo in the 1950s.

paul & elizabeth closeup

Newman brings depth and feeling to the role as Brick, while Taylor succeeds brilliantly in portraying Maggie as a passionate and understanding woman despite her own real-life emotional turmoil over the death of her husband, at the time, producer Mike Todd. [He died in a plane crash. Elizabeth Taylor was devastated. note by Jk.]

cat-on-a-hot-tin-roof paul newman

Camille Paglia wrote on Elizabeth Taylor

“She wields the sexual power that feminism cannot explain and has tried to destroy. Through stars like Taylor, we sense the world-disordering impact of legendary women like Delilah, Salome, and Helen of Troy. Feminism has tried to dismiss the femme fatale as a misogynist libel, a hoary cliche. But the femme fatale expresses women’s ancient and eternal control of the sexual realm.

cat-on-a-hot-tin-roof-burl-ives-elizabeth-taylor-paul-newman-1958 big daddy

Exactly. At that time, you have to realize, Elizabeth Taylor was still being underestimated as an actress. No one took her seriously — she would even make jokes about it in public. And when I wrote that piece, Meryl Streep was constantly being touted as the greatest actress who ever lived. I was in total revolt against that and launched this protest because I think that Elizabeth Taylor is actually a greater actress than Meryl Streep [I love Meryl Streep but I must agree, I love Elizabeth Taylor and she is a magnificent Actress], despite Streep’s command of a certain kind of technical skill.

cat-on-a-hot-tin-roof-paul bg & elizabeth fg

To me, Elizabeth Taylor’s importance as an actress was that she represented a kind of womanliness that is now completely impossible to find on the U.S. or U.K. screen. It was rooted in hormonal reality — the vitality of nature. She was single-handedly a living rebuke to postmodernism and post-structuralism, which maintain that gender is merely a social construct. Let me give you an example. Lisa Cholodenko’s “The Kids Are All Right” is a truly wonderful film, but Julianne Moore and Annette Bening — who is fabulous in it and should have won the Oscar for her portrayal of a prototypical contemporary American career woman — were painfully scrawny to look at on the screen. This is the standard starvation look that is now projected by Hollywood women stars — a skeletal, Pilates-honed, anorexic silhouette, which has nothing to do with females as most of the world understands them. There’s something almost android about the depictions of women currently being projected by Hollywood.

cat-on-a-hot-tin-roof-paul w elizabeth behind him 1958

Elizabeth Taylor has been a colossal pagan goddess…my sensibility as a culture critic and as a feminist was deeply formed by her. In the U.S. in the 1950s, blondes were the ultimate Aryan ideal…And then there was Elizabeth Taylor with that gorgeous, brunette, ethnic look. She looked Jewish, Italian, Spanish, even Moorish! She was truly transcultural — it was a radical resistance to the dominance of the blond sorority queens and cheerleaders. And then her open sexuality in that puritanical period! It was so daring…

Paul-Newman-in-Cat-on-a-Hot-Tin-Roof

There was a long feminist attack on the Hollywood sex symbol as a sex object, a commodified thing, passive to the male gaze, and it’s such a crock! …There’s that incredible moment in the bar [Elizabeth Taylor in the film "Butterfield 8] where she’s wearing a svelte black dress and she and Laurence Harvey are fighting. He grabs her by the arm, and she grinds her stiletto heel into his elegant shoe. It’s male vs. female — a ferocious equal match. He’s strong, but she’s strong too! That scene shows the power and intensity of heterosexuality, with all its tensions and conflicts. It also shows how terrible current Hollywood filmmaking is — how false and manufactured sex has become. There’s no real eroticism anymore.

* * * * * * *

Taylor’s acting has been resurrected by Turner Classic Movies, which is exposing new generations to her films, minus the off-screen publicity — scandals, illnesses, tragedies and melodramas — that accompanied her for her entire life.

…if you want to see what the Taylor legend is really about, some of my favorites are: “A Place in the Sun” (George Stevens, 1951), “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” (Richard Brooks, 1958), “Suddenly, Last Summer” (Joseph L. Mankiewicz, 1959), “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” (Mike Nichols, 1960 — for which Taylor won her second Oscar for best actress) — all but the first of which, oddly, are based on stage plays. — Modified by Jennifer Kiley

big_daddy_brick paul in cat sitting in rain

Cat on a Hot Tine Roof Trailer [1958]

cat_on_a_hot_tin_roof poster

Benedict Cumberbatch: [The Fifth Estate] Answers Assange

special edition day anyBenedict Cumberbatch: [The Fifth Estate] Answers Assange
Post Created by Jk the secret keeper
Illustrated by j. kiley
Post Created on Saturday 12th October 2013
Posted On Saturday 12th October 2013
SPECIAL EDITION

Actor Benedict Cumberbatch

the-fifth-estate-uk-posterBenedict Cumberbatch: [The Fifth Estate] Answers Assange’s Open Letter

Benedict Cumberbatch participated in a Reddit Ask Me Anything session on Friday in support of his new film, “The Fifth Estate,” and he was asked about Julian Assange’s open letter to the actor. In a missive dated Jan. 15, 2013, Assange admonished Cumberbatch for participating in the new film, which tracks the rise of WikiLeaks.

“I believe that you should reconsider your involvement in this enterprise,” Assange wrote, before then adding that he wouldn’t meet with Cumberbatch, a request the 37-year-old actor made before the film’s production began. “By meeting with you, I would validate this wretched film, and endorse the talented, but debauched, performance that the script will force you to give.”

Cumberbatch said the letter did give him pause, but also emboldened him into taking the role. His detailed response is below:

He accuses me of being a ‘hired gun’ as if I am an easily bought cypher for right wing propaganda. Not only do I NOT operate in a moral vacuum but this was not a pay day for me at all. I’ve worked far less hard for more financial reward.

This project was important to me because of the integrity I wanted to bring to provocative difficult but ultimately timely and a truly important figure of our modern times. The idea of making a movie about someone who so far removed from my likeness or situation who brought about an ideal through personal sacrifice that has changed the way we view both social media, the power of the individual to have a voice in that space, and be able to question both the hypocrisies and wrongdoings of organizations and bodies of powerful people that rule our lives. …

This resonated deeply with my beliefs in civil liberty, a healthy democracy, and the human rights of both communities and individuals to question those in authority.

I believe that the film, quite clearly, illuminates the great successes of wikileaks and its extraordinary founder Julians Assange. As well as, examining the personalities involved and what became a dysfunctional relationship within that organization. While the legacy of his actions and the organizations continue to evolve and only history will be the true judge of where this is leading us.

‘The Fifth Estate’ is a powerful, if dramatized, entry point for a discussion about this extraordinary lurch forward in our society. I wanted to create a three dimensional portrait of a man far more maligned in the tabloid press than he is in our film to remind people that he is not just the weird, white haired Australian dude wanted in Sweden, hiding in an embassy behind Harrods. But a true force to be reckoned with, achieved the realization of the great ideal.

I’m proud to be involved in tackling such a contentious character and script. There is only personal truth in my opinion, and the film should provoke debate and not consensus. It should be enjoyable and ultimately empowering to realize that Julian has spearheaded a movement that is the foundations stone of ‘The Fifth Estate,’ people journalism and what that is capable of including finding out the ‘truth’ for yourself.

The Fifth Estate [Official Trailer]