Posts tagged with “ben affleck”
Here’s a quick rundown of 2012′s Best from your friends at Serious Movie Lover:
1-3. We’re going with a 3-way tie for first place.
Saw this movie three times in the theater and loved it every time. Special recognition to Alexandre Desplat for the music.
The Master– Mesmerizing cinematography and acting. A shame that it will not be rewarded in a major way this awards season.
Life of Pi–Amazing in every respect. Kudos to Ang Lee.
4. Bernie–Hilarious! Finally a good feature for Jack Black. Loved the locals featured in this fun flick.
5. Argo-–Nothing over the top here, just solid filmmaking from Ben Affleck.
Lincoln–Too stage-y for us but a tour de force for Daniel Day Lewis.
Pending / Still waiting to see…..
Zero Dark Thirty, Django Unchained, Amour, On the Road
What are your favorites? Be sure to tell us in our comments section.
Thanks and see you in the New Year!
ARGO (2012/IN THEATERS) Talk about timing! Ben Affleck’s third film as director and second as lead actor plus director (the other is The Town) opens with all too familiar scenes of riots in a middle eastern setting, complete with angry mobs protesting in the street, the burning of American flags and chanting of anti-American slogans, and ultimately the invasion of our embassy. It’s not Cairo or Bengazi this time—it’s Tehran. And for those too young to remember, this scene is part of the Iranian revolution of 1979—an ugly affair that left 52 U.S. embassy employees held hostage for 444 days. The president at the time was Jimmy Carter and the “Iran hostage crisis” ultimately cost him his 2nd term—he lost the election to Ronald Reagan in 1980. Many scenes in the film are stark reminders of how little has changed for the U.S., Iran and the Middle East, but don’t be discouraged–there’s a wonderful true story at the heart of this movie, one none of us knew at the time. It starts with 6 embassy employees who were able to escape before capture and were housed in secret by the Canadian ambassador to Iran at his own home. And who knew? The CIA worked with both Canada and the Carter State Department to mount a clever and daring rescue of these individuals, right under the noses of the Iranians. The “cover” for their removal was a fake science fiction film, called Argo, complete with storyboards, script, Variety article, and even a production office in Hollywood. The CIA operative who created this cover was Tony Mendez (Affleck) who is the main character in the movie. He agrees to go to Iran to smuggle out the group of six posing them as a Canadian film crew. Fabulous. Helping from Hollywood are John Chambers (John Goodman), a make-up specialist who was famous for Star Wars type costumes, and the ace Producer Lester Siegel (Alan Arkin) who gave the whole cover store legitimacy. Mendez gets support also from his next up the line, Jack O’Donnell (Brian Cranston) who has his back when he needs it most. The movie is more than solid—clever, with funny moments, and plenty of suspense and tension. It has earned a 95% on Rotten Tomatoes, from all critics, top critics and audiences alike. I’m down with that rating—kudos to Ben Affleck and even bigger congrats to the real life people who inspired and lived this story
THE TOWN (2010/DVD) Ben Affleck’s second directorial effort (his first was Gone Baby Gone) was well received by both critics and audiences when it was released last fall and has accumulated a domestic box office haul of over $92 million, which must be a thrill for all involved. This is a tightly cast, well-scripted crime action flick, set in Boston and the metro area, and specifically in Charlestown (The Town of the title), which is located just north of Boston and is a notorious location for crime. Affleck plays the lead as Doug MacRay, a quiet criminal who no longer drinks (he even goes to one AA meeting in the film) and really is tired and ready to quit. The bank job which opens the picture introduces us to his gang of four, most notably his no.2 Jimmy Coughlin (played by Oscar Supporting nominee Jeremy Renner) who is the very definition of “loose cannon.” As we learn during the movie, Jimmy has already served 9 years in prison and is anxious to make up for lost time. For some unknown reason, he chooses to take Claire Keesey (Rebecca Hall), the bank manager, as a hostage for a short period after the heist. After releasing her, he makes it clear to Doug that he’s going to kill her, so Doug intervenes and lo and behold, falls for her. This sets up a nice plot twist, which is played out, as most of the scenes in this movie are, without a lot of high drama and rather more in a “normal” manner. So we have three strong leads already and add to that Jon Hamm as the determined FBI agent who wants to take this gang down. Also add Chris Cooper as Doug’s dad (excellent as always in his short appearance), Blake Lively as Jimmy’s classically Boston-smutty sister, who’s really strong in her role, and finally Pete Postlethwaite (who died this year) as the ultimate bad-guy Fergie complete with an Irish accent that would not be unusual in Boston. And speaking of Boston, I heard that Affleck was very picky that the accents in the film be realistic, not overdone—they sounded good to me. Also, those car chases down the narrow streets of Boston must have been a real bitch to shoot! Congrats, Ben, on another tight film.
Of note: The movie premiered at The Fenway! Watch the film to learn why…
P.S. Those rubber nun masks in the trailers and the poster are truly creepy.