The Death of Peter O’Toole

December 19, 2013 § Leave a comment

“I will not be a common man. I will stir the smooth sands of monotony.” 

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Peter O’Toole died 5 days ago…and I’m gutted…

He of “golden voice that lifts, gilds and animates ordinary words, and the light in his eyes as if he’d swallowed the pale blue moon” left this mortal coil at the age of 81.

With those burning blue eyes, no one smouldered on the silver screen like Peter. Even for his time he was considered an edgy antihero who could charm the pants off of Lucifer himself. That voice, that laugh, that quicksilver wit; I fear we shall never see the likes of him again…*sigh*

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When I recall that ‘gilded voice’, I also can hear the echo of his growl, and see the ferocious beast that lurked behind those pale peepers. He was a bad boy after all. A lifelong battle with the drink, best friend to the Burton’s and that devious smile was always a welcomed contrast to his Aryan angelic features.

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Upon deciding who should take the role as King Henry II and Thomas Becket, both Peter & Richard Burton holed themselves in a hotel room, went on a bender and then appeared from the shadows knowing who would be who. Peter played King Henry again in the bitingly savage, The Lion in Winter, alongside the radiant, yet aged Katherine Hepburn as Eleanor of Aquitaine; their vicious banter is the stuff of Virginia Wolf’s wet dreams. Y Peter was denied the Golden statuette, but as the saying goes...”Even King’s don’t get second chances”.

Peter O’Toole possessed a duality and depth of character which made him so desirable and irresistable. He was a silver tongued devil that lashed out insults like a cracking whip, seduce you with the recitation of a Shakespearean sonnet, or tickle your ears awaiting to hear a loud appreciative laugh. The man could be a gentleman, comedian & bastard all at once. And I loved him for it…

It was his breakout role in Lawrence of Arabia that cemented my fandom; David Lean’s epic set upon the desert suns-capes captured my heart.

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We’ve all heard the quote, but it begs repeating, “if you had been any prettier, the film would have been called Florence of Arabia”.

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It was this film that started a fire within me that propelled me to pursue film school; the vibrant and saturated hues of Arabia breathed life into celluloid and I wanted to do the same. My imagination was alight with adventure.

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The scene below is one my favourites; it was unscripted, unrehearsed and absolutely perfect. In that gorgeous white fabric with only a blade to admire oneself, I would have done the exact same thing…

Peter O’Toole was a gem, whose genius was not always recognized in his time, but will be admired by generations to come. He will always be at the pinnacle of acting and remain my #1 in regards to authenticity. He remained as sharp as a bloody tack until his death and always possessed an air of mischief & dignity. Dear Peter, I shall miss you terribly, but will comfort myself in knowing you are free from suffering and will remain immortal.

Rest in Peace: 1932 t0 2013

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2013: And The Winner Is…

February 27, 2013 § 2 Comments

Argo

Argo

Not a total shocker, but come on, Argo? Throw me off the Hollywood Hills if you must, but this was not a strong year for films. We had three, pardon me, ‘America F**k Yeah!” films, an exhausting, overdone musical, a glorified rom com, which left us with only 4 decent films worthy of the title. Argo had incredible pace, that was thrilling until its final act, but it was a perfect example of the Academy’s love for the underdog pulling through. By snubbing Ben in the Best Director category, he & Georgie boy took home the gold baldie for Best Picture. Whatever, its all so mastabatory anyway…

Just for the record, Seth MacFarlane has made it resounding clear that he will not be hosting next year. In all fairness, unlike the snarky, shocking snipes from the trigger happy Ricky Gervais, Seth set the tone from the get go that he was going to cut fast & deep. I appreciated that the comedy writing was certainly in his voice, unlike other puppet hosts of the past (ahem, Hathaway). The whole Captain Kirk bit was tapped from his comedic veins and allowed him to take shots at himself. I’ve had “I Saw Your Boobs” rattling around in my melon for days now.

SNUBS

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Listen, I saw all the Best Pic noms, & then some, and I can honesty say that The Master being snubbed was a terrible oversight. P.T. Anderson keeps those masterpieces coming and trust me, The Masters rich symbolism will be analzyed and agonized in film schools for years. The performances were incredible! Amy’s heavily pregnant, Lady MacBethes-que, Peggy Dodd was the stuff of legend. Same goes for Joaquin who underwent an incredible prosthetic-free transformation into a character that was more animal than man; but he tried so hard to have the ego rule the id.

Although Amour won Best Foreign Film, Emmanuelle Riva’s stroke victim was unbelievably good and truly earned the French actress the golden statuette. Her stutters and steely gaze behind a paralyzed face was chillingly remarkable. Even Naomi’s tsunami survivor was astounding; I was in tears before the 20 minute mark. But alas, as much as I love JLaw this win was premature; a classic Oscar mea culpa for previously snubbing her groundbreaking performance in Winters Bone. Even though he didn’t win for Best Picture, I’m elated that Ang received the win for Best Director. The Ayatollah ain’t got nothing on directing a novice actor (carrying an entire film on his shoulders, mind you), kids, animals, water, multiple locations, continents & languages. And Ang made it look effortless.

“Xie Xie & Namaste”.

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The Dresses; The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Alright, I’ll stop my film school diatribe to give you want you really want; the dirt on who stunned and who was shunned. This was a year of Big Time Bling! Metallic Maidens galore who put on the glitz & glam in La La Land

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Emmanuelle, our French Grand Dame was effortless elegance in Lanvin

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Jennifer Lawrence was chided for her bridal gown look, but with her youthful vibrancy she pulled of this white Dior Haute Couture gown and I adored the subtle sparkle of the Chopard chain flowing down her back

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Halle Berry, do you never age? My God, did she stun everyone stupid in this long-sleeve, stripped Versace gown. I’ve not seen anything like it & loved how the plunge in the front matched that of the back.

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Jessica Chastain was an absolute vision. As a red head, I can imagine that it would be difficult to find an airy tone that didn’t wash her out, but this Art Deco-inspired, gold gown by Armani Privé was perfection. That juicy shade of red lipstick paired with her jewelry by Harry Winston made her shine like a Glamour Goddesses of the Silver Screen era.

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Catherine Zeta, I ask you the same question I posited to Halle; how do you keep it so tight, woman? This dress was metallic sexiness and she reminded me of a Gustav Klimt painting. I know she’s made it on almost every worst dressed list but I think she looked incredible in this gown; the work on the bodice is exquisite and to die for.

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Naomi’s snub aside, she was the High Fashion forward belle in this futuristic metallic Armani Privé column gown. It was a risk that paid off and made her stand out from the crowd. Grace Jones eat your heart out…

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Jane Fonda, is one of my absolute favorite actresses, and its not because she’s smoking hot at age 75 {yes, that’s right, 75 years old}. A former bulimic and anorexic, Jane was able to love herself and now spends her time as a motivational speaker, telling her story so that future generations of woman hopefully won’t suffer like she did. She sang in this canary-yellow corseted Versace gown with strong shoulders and sequin details; she is woman, hear her Roar!

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Oh hello Amanda. I loved this Alexander McQueen gown lace, and totally thought she outshone her Les Mis costars. But I don’t think it loved her; the way she held herself seemed like her corset/spanx were crushing this bird. She honestly looked like she was suffering on the red carpet, but it worked for the paps snaps. I also loved loved loved the red gown she wore in that ensemble musical number. This was a rooky mistake, but with her acting chops, I know she’ll be back.

 

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This woman is supposedly a wrestler. What?! Stacy Keibler obviously had no problems locking Georgie’s arms in taking her down the red carpet in this Naeem Khan killer dress.

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*Sigh*…Charlize, the only woman who can pull off peplum with such fierce elegance. But let’s be real, she could wear a potato sack and stop traffic with a 10 car pile up

The Bad & Urmmmm Ugly

I don’t mean to be horrible, I really don’t, but this is all a lesson for next time, right? For the record, I don’t think any of these ladies are ugly, but uhmm, their choices, well let’s just say require more imagination than I can muster at the moment…

Except for Anne…

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She knows better…And not only that, she has an army of stylists and has designers literally throwing gowns at her. I think she is a fab actress, but I don’t know…my spidey senses are tingling and I find her terribly insincere. When I saw this rosy gown with the perky boob seaming, the image of Audrey Hepburn winning her first Oscar flashed in my mind.

Never will you ever be as grand or iconic as Audrey; sorry.

I’m onto you Hathaway, & no amount of side boob can help you…

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Kristen, you ‘Trampire” {Will Ferrell’s words, not mine}. I don’t think she looks bad, she clearly doesn’t give a f**k.

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Melissa McCarthy unfortunately matched the grey curtains she was presenting in front of; a definite Oscar no-no & you’re people should have been on this. But her make up and hair were dynamite

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Norah had a great performance but terrible red carpet dress; its ill fitting. Poor thing, she should have stuck with the Supremes Sunshine yellow; she nailed that look.

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Helena, I love you, you saucy spazz. And like KStew, you also do not give two flying f**ks.

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I have no idea why this mess has topped many Best Dressed Lists, but from the waist up, those appliques and that belt are ridiculous. I don’t know what Zoe was thinking. The tail is beautifully crafted, but the colours are a drab bore on this dusky beauty.

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This is a frumpy, ill fitting, blight in blue. Reese constantly had to announce her pregnancy as if to say it wasn’t her fault that as a huge Hollywood star she wore a dress that looks likes it about to slip off. Just don’t go shopping with Kim Kardashian, ok?

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Tsk, tsk, tsk…Kelly Rowland this is a disaster. From that bustier that looks like a 2nd graders attempt at origami to that awkward and unflattering slit, I’m just in shock. This is a beautiful woman, one of Destiny’s Children, who has clearly lost her damn mind.

Well that’s all my Happy Howlers! Another Oscars has come & gone; the rest is history now & theres no point crying over spilt Moet!

Because I’m cruel & hate to suffer alone, I leave you with…

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