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By DP30 david@thehotbuttonl.com

DP/30: Anna Karenina, actor Keira Knightley

7 Responses to “DP/30: Anna Karenina, actor Keira Knightley”

  1. Lex says:

    LOOK AT HER. The world’s most perfect and CHARMING woman.

  2. NightTale says:

    I thought she was frighteningly good in Anna Karenina. It really takes a fearless actress to play such an unlikable/complex character. She deserves praise for playing such a role and I hope AMPAS gives her a second Oscar nomination.

  3. Not David Bordwell says:

    I would like to point out that she played an equally unlikable/complex character without fear in Cronenberg’s A DANGEROUS METHOD without all this effusive praise. She was already astonishing in that film, but now she gets the Oscar buzz? Perplexing.

  4. Actionman says:

    Sooooooo disgusted that AK hasn’t opened in my area. What are they doing with the release of this supposedly groundbreaking adaptation?

    She’s stunningly beautiful, and hugely talented, a rare combo. Have always been a massive fan. Domino POWER.

  5. Lex says:

    Anna Karenina is terrific, big Joe Wright fan, and Keira is one of my absolute favorites (and the only woman for whom I’d maybe take a pass on K-Stew), but quick stylistic question about AK:

    This is a minority opinion, but anyone else think its stylistic “audacity” is being maybe overstated? Reviews both pro- and con talk at length about its formalistic quirks, like the “staged” elements and going backstage, etc. Anyone else feel like those were kind of neither here nor there? Honestly, 95% of the movie seemed to play like a really good, invested, visceral period movie, and then every 25 minutes or so they’d break the fourth wall just a smidge, and you kinda go, “Okay, fine, going with it, whatever,” then it returns to the big epic movie that it is.

    Just everyone talking about how CRA-A-A-AZY Wright’s choice to do that is, but it’s hardly what I remember about the movie, and didn’t seem to add or detract in any real way. Honestly think a lot of casual viewers wouldn’t even notice it.

  6. Mike says:

    Lex, I haven’t seen AK, but I remember bits and pieces of Atonement in a similar way. I remember the weird score–which used the typewriter–and how I thought it was clever at first, but then overused. The same with the long uncut shot on the beach in Dunkirk. His flair for the dramatic feels too calculated sometimes, and adds little to the whole work.

  7. Actionman says:

    That shot at Dunkirk is a fucking marvel of filmmaking, and his one-take-fight with Bana in Hanna was supreme. Joe Wright feels like he came from the same school as Mendes.

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DP/30

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Tsangari: With my next film, White Knuckles, it comes with a budget — it’s going to be a huge new world for me. As always when I enter into a new thing, don’t you wonder how it’s going to be and how much of yourself you are going to have to sacrifice? The ballet of all of this. I’m already imaging the choreography — not of the camera, but the choreography of actually bringing it to life. It is as fascinating as the shooting itself. I find the producing as exciting as the directing. The one informs the other. There is this producer-director hat that I constantly wear. I’ve been thinking about these early auteurs, like Howard Hawks and John Ford and Preston Sturges—all of these guys basically were hired by the studio, and I doubt they had final cut, and somehow they had films that now we can say they had their signatures.  There are different ways of being creative within the parameters and limitations of production. The only thing you cannot negotiate is stupidity.
Filmmaker: And unfortunately, there is an abundance of that in the world.
Tsangari: This is the only big risk: stupidity. Everything else is completely worked out in the end.
~ Chevalier‘s Rachel Athina Tsangari

“The middle-range movies that I was doing have largely either stopped being made, or they’ve moved to television, now that television is a go-to medium for directors who can’t get work in theatricals, because there are so few theatricals being made. But also with the new miniseries concept, you can tell a long story in detail without having to cram it all into 90 minutes. You don’t have to cut the characters and take out the secondary people. You can actually put them all on a big canvas. And it is a big canvas, because people have bigger screens now, so there’s no aesthetic difference between the way you shoot a movie and the way you shoot a TV show.

“Which is all for the good. But what’s happened in the interim is that theatrical movies being a spectacle business are now either giant blockbuster movies that run three hours—even superhero movies run three hours, they used to run like 58 minutes!—and the others, which are dysfunctional family independent movies or the slob comedy or the kiddie movie, and those are all low-budget. So the middle ground of movies that were about things, they’re just gone. Or else they’re on HBO. Like the Bryan Cranston LBJ movie, which years ago would’ve been made for theaters.

“You’ve got people like Paul Schrader and Walter Hill who can’t get their movies theatrically distributed because there’s no market for it. So they end up going to VOD, and VOD is a model from which no one makes any money, because most of the time, as soon as they get on the site, they’re pirated. So the whole model of the system right now is completely broken. And whether or not anybody’s going to try to fix, or if it even can be fixed, I don’t know. But it’s certainly not the same business that I got into in the ’70s.”
~ Joe Dante

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