Oh, to have been in Ron Shelton‘s shoes in the ’80s and ’90s. The reigning auteur of soulful sports movies. 29 years ago the director of the great Bull Durham (’88) was at the top of the heap, and to have followed this up with the reasonably decent Blaze (’89), White Men Can’t Jump (’92), Cobb (’94) and Tin Cup (’96)….smokin’! Hell, I was even half okay with Hollywood Homicide (’03). But now this…a light-hearted septugenarian thing…a cock-of-the-walk cialis-boner comedy set in the Palm Springs area. Lo, how the mighty have fallen. Morgan Freeman, Tommy Lee Jones, Rene Russo, Joe Pantoliano, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Graham Beckel and the late Glenne Headly. Broad Green’s Just Getting Started pops on 12.8.
From David Rooney’s 9.10.16 Hollywood Reporter review: “Blake Lively might have been better off swimming with that shark in The Shallows than subjecting herself to the gummy toothlessness of Marc Forster‘s wet psychodrama All I See Is You. Whatever is happening onscreen, there’s very little here to engage the mind, making it more tempting to close your eyes and surrender to the blind blur of sleep.
“Had the performances been more interesting, the lame script might not have been such an insurmountable problem. But Lively doesn’t do much to stretch her limited range, while Jason Clarke shows none of the dangerous edge that has made him a distinctive screen presence in other movies. And their chemistry together isn’t exactly cooking.
Here’s a description of one of the most vivid nightmares of my life, which invaded my head when I six or seven: I was inside an old-fashioned jail cell, the kind you see in old western movies. The lighting in the cell was dark, but there was a large gleaming kitchen at the end of a large hallway that was adjacent to the cell. I was a prisoner in the cell, and my imprisonment was part of an instructional TV show about cooking — i.e., how to prepare this or that gourmet meal. I was to be the main course, but instead of Julia Child in the kitchen the hosts were two boxer dogs walking around on their hind legs with white aprons tied around their waists. They were carrying large silver trays covered by large cloth napkins, and all sorts of knives were arranged on top. The show was being narrated by one of the dogs, and I remember that he sounded like an upper-crust butler — like William Powell in My Man Godfrey or Edward Everett Horton in Top Hat. The boxer dog explained very slowly and precisely how I was to be prepared just so. The legs and arms and the meat around the ribs were the tastiest, but the right sauces and spices had to be applied in the right way and the oven had to be pre-heated at a certain temperature, etc. The carving wasn’t part of the dream. The dream was about the dogs following the cook book instructions to the letter. The narrator was speaking in the calmest and most civilized of tones.
In a just, fair-minded world, this photo of James Corden kissing (!) Sean Spicer at the Emmys last night would be processed as the same kind of political faux pas as Jimmy Fallon mussing Donald Trump’s hair. Or, if you will, Sammy Davis, Jr. hugging President Nixon at a 1972 youth rally. Or the big studio chiefs of the early ’30s giving handshakes and back-pats to Georg Gyssling, the Nazi party member and ally of Joseph Goebbels who became the German consul to Los Angeles in 1933. Does Corden seem to be a soul-less, gut-less, unprincipled toady? Yes, he does. If Corden could be transported back to 1975 and flown to Phnom Penh, would he give a backrub to Pol Pot? I see Corden and Spicey singing Queen’s “Bicycle Race” together…no?
Hulu’s The Handmaids Tale won all those Emmys because it sent a message about resisting authoritarian governments. HBO’s Big Little Lies, essentially a series about women resisting and defeating men with cruelly perverse mentalities, won because the metaphor fit the political climate. Sean Spicer rolling onstage and more or less saying “I said some very questionable things and embraced assholery while serving as President Trump’s press spokesperson”…that spoke for itself. Alec Baldwin and Kate McKinnon winning, obviously. HBO’s The Wizard of Lies lost, in part, because despite Barry Levinson‘s obviously negative view of Bernie Madoff‘s widespread malice, there was a collateral ooze factor because Madoff came from the same New York financial culture as Trump.
Incidentally: (1) If eligible I would have never voted for HBO’s The Night Of in any capacity because of (a) the focus on John Turturro‘s problem with foot eczema (i.e., dermatitis), and (b) the writers doubling down by allowing the poor man to find a Chinese herbal cure for this revolting affliction and then bringing the foot eczema back at the very end — unforgivable! (2) I would have voted for Feud up and down, but Ryan Murphy‘s series lacked political resonance. (3) Three cheers for the total snub of HBO’s totally infuriating, puzzleboxing Westworld (“I hate this series with a passion for just layering on the layers, for plotzing, diddly-fucking, detouring, belly-stabbing, meandering and puzzleboxing to its heart’s content”)