Like, you know, whatever.
"I don’t care who the father is! I’m the grandfather."
British actor Elba speaks with a sort of closed-teeth diction to emulate Mandela’s speech pattern in Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. While his strange pronunciation can be slightly distracting, he plays Mandela as dashing, determined and convinced of his right cause. Surprisingly though, it’s Harris who impresses the most here. Her Winnie is fierce and beautiful, discovering her grit and her own skill for leadership as her husband is held for decades on Robben Island. Harris shows immense talent and range in her supporting role.
One can’t really view this film as “based on a true story,” because it isn’t. Certainly these characters are based on real people who had real dealings together (well, Disney and Travers anyway). But as perfectly as Thompson plays this version of Travers, the author in Saving Mr. Banks seems a flimsy copy of the real thing. As I watched the film, I recalled a New Yorker article I had read some years ago about Travers and her thoughts on Disney’s musical (get it while it’s free!). We are told nothing here of the author’s adult relationships, and the character demurs when asked about children. The grumpy Travers of the film, we are led to believe, was formed and inspired by the events of her childhood — never mind the years afterward.
No one asked for it, but here you go: my favorite films from 2013.
Top two (that’s why they merit larger squares in the collage): Frances Ha and Before Midnight (my review)
I’m going to do another collage with the other movies I really liked — the honorable mention list is pretty long.
Sombras de Azul moves in quiet meditation, with Maribel’s reflections about her brother spoken over scenes of landscape, cityscape or beach. People in white congregate on the streets for an unnamed sacred event. Maribel sits silently in a graveyard under a tree, the audio of her narration softly spooling out a tall tale Carlos once told her about a snake.
I sincerely hope that 2013 is the break-out year for Chiwetel Ejiofor, when he gets the attention from filmgoers (and filmmakers) he so deserves. With his phenomenal, determined performance as Solomon Northup in Steve McQueen’s film 12 Years a Slave (and his part in the upcoming dramatization of Half of a Yellow Sun), it could happen!
I’m not subtle about my appreciation for Mr. Ejiofor.
"Before “A Conversation with Callie Khouri” began on Sunday morning, I actually saw her in the bathroom. Yes, I stopped myself from asking when Avery and Juliette will finally hook up on Nashville (but inquiring minds want to know!) — and didn’t even ask her about it during the panel itself."
I HOPE YOU ARE PROUD OF ME,