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Nothing Prepared Them for the BOMBSHELL Returning on Bluray

 

bombshell bluray cover

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray, DVD and Digital from director Jay Roach and Lionsgate comes an explosive story about women and a power they fought against when preparing for the BOMBSHELL.

On the Fox News channel, women like Gretchen Carlson (Nicole Kidman) and Megan Kelly (Charlize Theron) are making a name for themselves. Seeing it for herself is incoming wanna-be Kayla Pospisil (Margot Robbie) who is one of the producers for Carlson’s show and wants more. So much so that Kayla takes a position with Bill O’Reilly which infuriates Carlson.

Luring above all the newsrooms is Roger Ailes (John Lithgow) who made Fox News a sensation and runs a tight ship with the okay from Rupert Murdoch (Malcolm McDowell). No one dare challenge Ailes as he made is very clear that he could make or break a career. That is what

Carlson faced when she begins to suspect that her news days on air are numbered. Seeing legal counsel before that happens, she is told that going directly for Ailes instead of the company would be her best option.

bomb 4

At Kayla’s new position she meets producer Jess Carr (Kate McKinnon) and the two quickly become friends. One day Kayla takes it upon herself to make her way up to Ailes office to introduce herself. Accepting the meeting, Ailes begins calming talking to her about what it is she wants. Once the politeness is done, Ailes claims he needs to get a closer look at Kayla since television is a “visual medium”. She leaves his office knowing what transpired was frightening.

Once out and the Carlson sexual harassment lawsuit filed, Kelly must come to terms with what she knows, but she isn’t the only one. One woman after another comes forward while Kelly remains silent. Telling her husband what is happening doesn’t help her decision on what to do next easier. Kayla also keeps her head down and avoids Ailes office as much as she can but Carr notices something is wrong.

Trying to coax people to help, Ailes wife Beth (Connie Britton) wonders why Kelly isn’t coming out in support of the man who gave her a career. Ailes vehemently denies the accusations against him and cannot fathom why the women would say such things. The bigger the story gets, people begin to take sides and finally Murdoch knows that a decision must be made to safe what is left of Fox News.

Standing together the women realize there is safety in numbers.

Theron as Kelly is ridiculously scary because after a minute of watching her on screen I forgot that I was watching Theron. Her movements and speech are spectacular to the point of being brought into the story with ease. Theron has always been a consummate actress in my book and I have never really found fault in anything she has done but let me say in this film just absolutely blew me away. From start to finish I was riveted by her performance and, although not a huge fan of Kelly herself, do have a healthy dose of respect for her. She can thank Theron for that anytime.

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Kidman as Carlson is a woman who sees the writing on the wall knowing it comes directly from Ailes and his eyes ever watching his news kingdom. The smartest thing for me was her knowing it was coming and did whatever she could to make sure things were ‘documented’. I mean really, did Ailes truly believe he was untouchable? I don’t comprehend that thinking except to chalk it up to an old school mentality where it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt. Kidman gives Carlson stealth and determination in a world that Ailes seem to feel was a gift he gave her with a stipulation of silence.

Robbie as Kayla is a young woman on the move and doesn’t think too much before changing lanes. It seemed that all this character wanted to do was get to the top fast and try not to leave to many high heel marks on the backs of others. Idolizing Carlson and even Kelly, the character of Kayla doesn’t seem to have the maturity to handle what is about to happen to her.

McKinnon as Carr is a woman who is hiding who she is because she wants to keep her job. Knowing the environment around her isn’t kind to everyone, McKinnon brings her own hurting brevity to this character and it makes a hard point. Britton as Beth holds fast to her husband innocence even though I have a gut feeling she knows he’s not so innocent trusting in the ‘that’s just who he is’ line of defense.

Now let’s talk about Lithgow as Ailes because his performance is just so disturbing. Thinking that he should get an award for his portrayal it set my mind ablaze thinking ‘how do you give an award to someone for doing a stellar job without once again giving Ailes airtime’. I know, it’s making a mountain out of a mole hill but – is it? Anyway, Lithgow is riveting, yucky and portraying a man who used his powers in the most unspeakable of ways. This performance is just…wow!

Shout out to Allison Janney as Susan Estrich because she deserves a shout out. McDowell as Murdoch waltzes into a room and shows Ailes how it’s done.

Other cast include Liv Hewson as Lily Balin, Brigette Lundy-Paine as Julia Clarke, Rob Delaney as Gil Norman, Stephen Root as Neil Mullen, Robin Weigert as Nancy Smith, Amy Landecker as Dianne Brandi and Mark Duplass as Doug Brunt.

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Lionsgate is a global leader in motion picture production and distribution for theatres, television, home entertainment and more. Theatre franchises include THE HUNGER GAMES, and DIVERGENT along with JOHN WICK. Now, adding this film to its 16,000 motion picture and television titles you can see everything coming soon as well as available now at http://www.lionsgate.com.

The Bluray and DVD Special Features include No Easy Truths: The Making of Bombshell (7-Part Documentary), Convergence: Genesis of the Film, Quid Pro Quo: Charlize, Nicole, Margot, John, Human Dynamics: The Ensemble Cast, Breaking the Fourth Wall: Visual Design, Layer by Layer: Makeup, Hair & Clothing, A Unique Skill Set: Jay Roach and Catalyst for Change: Parting Thoughts.

BOMBSHELL is a film that gives a look inside the fall from Fox News grace of Roger Ailes but more importantly, what it took for Carlson to take a stand. The film isn’t shy about putting it right out there that Ailes had power of such magnitude that he managed to shut down these women for years and years while up in his tower.

I was impressed with Kidman, Theron and Robbie as the film addresses their story’s individually and I think that’s important. Ailes abuses started early and as he got bolder, so did his ‘requests’ of these women and he talk about them later. As what usually happens when a powerful man is confronted with his misdeeds (by almost everyone’s standards), Ailes thinks he is above it all. That he barks and everyone cowers – well, Carlson decided to cower no more in 2016.

BOMBSHELL is a film that needs to be seen and then discussed. Whether it all happened the way its portrayed on-screen or not, it is a conversation that can stop even a hint of something like this from ever happening again. I don’t care if these women were on Fox News and I’m not a fan of Fox News – no one and I mean no one deserves to live their lives with fear – in family or at a job.

BOMBSHELL also received three Academy Award Nominations including Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress.

In the end – based on a scandal that shook a new empire!

Nothing Prepared Them for the BOMBSHELL

Bomb cover

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres from director Jay Roach and Lionsgate comes an explosive story about women and a power they fought against when preparing for the BOMBSHELL.

On the Fox News channel, women like Gretchen Carlson (Nicole Kidman) and Megan Kelly (Charlize Theron) are making a name for themselves. Seeing it for herself is incoming wanna-be Kayla Pospisil (Margot Robbie) who is one of the producers for Carlson’s show and wants more. So much so that Kayla takes a position with Bill O’Reilly which infuriates Carlson.

Luring above all the newsrooms is Roger Ailes (John Lithgow) who made Fox News a sensation and runs a tight ship with the okay from Rupert Murdoch (Malcolm McDowell). No one dare challenge Ailes as he made is very clear that he could make or break a career. That is what Carlson faced when she begins to suspect that her news days on air are numbered. Seeing legal counsel before that happens, she is told that going directly for Ailes instead of the company would be her best option.

bomb 1

At Kayla’s new position she meets producer Jess Carr (Kate McKinnon) and the two quickly become friends. One day Kayla takes it upon herself to make her way up to Ailes office to introduce herself. Accepting the meeting, Ailes begins calming talking to her about what it is she wants. Once the politeness is done, Ailes claims he needs to get a closer look at Kayla since television is a “visual medium”. She leaves his office knowing what transpired was frightening.

Once out and the Carlson sexual harassment lawsuit filed, Kelly must come to terms with what she knows, but she isn’t the only one. One woman after another comes forward while Kelly remains silent. Telling her husband what is happening doesn’t help her decision on what to do next easier. Kayla also keeps her head down and avoids Ailes office as much as she can but Carr notices something is wrong.

Trying to coax people to help, Ailes wife Beth (Connie Britton) wonders why Kelly isn’t coming out in support of the man who gave her a career. Ailes vehemently denies the accusations against him and cannot fathom why the women would say such things. The bigger the story gets, people begin to take sides and finally Murdoch knows that a decision must be made to safe what is left of Fox News.

Standing together the women realize there is safety in numbers.

bomb 4

Theron as Kelly is ridiculously scary because after a minute of watching her on screen I forgot that I was watching Theron. Her movements and speech are spectacular to the point of being brought into the story with ease. Theron has always been a consummate actress in my book and I have never really found fault in anything she has done but let me say in this film just absolutely blew me away. From start to finish I was riveted by her performance and, although not a huge fan of Kelly herself, do have a healthy dose of respect for her. She can thank Theron for that anytime.

Kidman as Carlson is a woman who sees the writing on the wall knowing it comes directly from Ailes and his eyes ever watching his news kingdom. The smartest thing for me was her knowing it was coming and did whatever she could to make sure things were ‘documented’. I mean really, did Ailes truly believe he was untouchable? I don’t comprehend that thinking except to chalk it up to an old school mentality where it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt. Kidman gives Carlson stealth and determination in a world that Ailes seem to feel was a gift he gave her with a stipulation of silence.

Robbie as Kayla is a young woman on the move and doesn’t think too much before changing lanes. It seemed that all this character wanted to do was get to the top fast and try not to leave to many high heel marks on the backs of others. Idolizing Carlson and even Kelly, the character of Kayla doesn’t seem to have the maturity to handle what is about to happen to her.

bomb 2

McKinnon as Carr is a woman who is hiding who she is because she wants to keep her job. Knowing the environment around her isn’t kind to everyone, McKinnon brings her own hurting brevity to this character and it makes a hard point. Britton as Beth holds fast to her husband innocence even though I have a gut feeling she knows he’s not so innocent trusting in the ‘that’s just who he is’ line of defense.

Now let’s talk about Lithgow as Ailes because his performance is just so disturbing. Thinking that he should get an award for his portrayal it set my mind ablaze thinking ‘how do you give an award to someone for doing a stellar job without once again giving Ailes airtime’. I know, it’s making a mountain out of a mole hill but – is it? Anyway, Lithgow is riveting, yucky and portraying a man who used his powers in the most unspeakable of ways. This performance is just…wow!

Shout out to Allison Janney as Susan Estrich because she deserves a shout out. McDowell as Murdoch waltz’s into a room and shows Ailes how it’s done.

Other cast include Liv Hewson as Lily Balin, Brigette Lundy-Paine as Julia Clarke, Rob Delaney as Gil Norman, Stephen Root as Neil Mullen, Robin Weigert as Nancy Smith, Amy Landecker as Dianne Brandi and Mark Duplass as Doug Brunt.

bomb 3

BOMBSHELL is a film that gives a look inside the fall from Fox News grace of Roger Ailes definitely but more importantly, what it took for Carlson to take a stand. The film isn’t shy about putting it right out there that Ailes had power of such magnitude that he managed to shut down these women for years and years while up in his tower.

I was impressed with Kidman, Theron and Robbie as the film addresses their story’s individually and I think that’s important. Ailes abuses started early and as he got bolder, so did his ‘requests’ of these women and he talk about them later. As what usually happens when a powerful man is confronted with his misdeeds (by almost everyone’s standards), Ailes thinks he is above it all. That he barks and everyone cowers – well, Carlson decided to cower no more in 2016.

BOMBSHELL is definitely a film that needs to be seen and then discussed. Whether it all happened the way its portrayed on screen or not, it is a conversation that can stop even a hint of something like this from ever happening again. I don’t care if these women were on Fox News and I’m not a fan of Fox News – no one and I mean no one deserves to live their lives with fear – in family or at a job.

In the end – based on a scandal that shook a new empire!

It’s Time to Experience HBO’s BIG LITTLE LIES on Bluray

Big little lies

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to Bluray this week from creator David E. Kelley, director Jean-Marc Vallee and HBO Home Entertainment is the unbelievable limited series BIG LITTLE LIES.

The story begins in Monterey when a death occurs on the steps of the local school. Through the investigation, the police speak to Madeline Mckenzie (Reese Witherspoon), a well known Mom who takes no guff from anyone as she raises her elementary school daughter Chloe (Darby Camp) as well as a teenager Abigail (Kathryn Newton).

Also, Celeste (Nicole Kidman) who is a mother of twin boys is a seemingly close friend to Madeline. New to Monterey is Jane (Shailene Woodley) who is raising her son Ziggy (Iain Armitage) all by herself. This is where the stories begin!

Madeline and Jane meet the first day of school when Madeline discovers her teenage daughter is acting out. At a stop sign there is a confrontation and Madeline ends up on the asphalt. Jane stops to help and their friendship begins from there.

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Being new to school, Ziggy is accused by his classmate Amabella (Ivy George) of hurting her. Her mother Renata (Laura Dern) isn’t about to have it and wants something done. Jane meets with the principle and says that Ziggy denies hurting anyone but that’s not good enough for Renata.

If that isn’t bad enough, Madeline is dealing with ex-husband Nathan (James Tupper) who pushes constantly. Part of it is due to his new wife Bonnie (Zoe Kravitz) who doesn’t know her limitations when it comes to Abigail who drives Madeline to distraction. That distraction upsets her husband Ed (Adam Scott) who thinks she spends way to much time worrying about everyone else – except him.

Celeste and her husband Perry (Alexander Skarsgård) are also having issues when he has a problem with not knowing every little thing that goes on in the family. Their relationship is based on physical issues and not always good ones. Perry tends to resolve issues with an angry frightening tone.

Jane’s story is unclear to Madeline and Celeste but they both figure she will tell them in time. Yet Ziggy is coming to the age where he is asking questions about his father and where he might be. Jane continues to say she doesn’t know but Madeline believes there is more that she isn’t telling.

To keep from losing her mind completely, Madeline works with the local theatre on a production of Avenue Q which now the mayor objects to. Not about to give up, she talks Celeste into legal intervention to get city hall of their stage. Perry isn’t happy about this either.

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Celeste and Perry begin therapy with Dr. Reisman (Robin Weigert) and she immediately asks questions that have the couple very uncomfortable. With Perry always traveling out of town, Celeste continues with therapy as she is confronted with the issues that are plaguing her.

Jane finally tells Madeline about Ziggy’s father and a search begins for the man. Jane isn’t sure how to handle all of her feelings as she plays out in her heard what could happen.

Renata is wielding her ugliness towards Jane and Ziggy by not making him welcome to a party. Madeline is furious and decides it is probably best that she put together a little fun of her own to keep Renata at bay. Of course the fact that she has a long arm means that there will be more problems between the two later.

Jane has finally had enough of Renata when she discovers there is a petition to have Ziggy suspended from school. The two come together for a confrontation that could either help or hurt but they are still no closer to the truth about the bullying.

The night of Avenue Q, Madeline is thrilled that everyone has shown up, that is everyone but Celeste and Perry. When Celeste is defending herself, Perry is hurt and a statement he makes later has her realizing that maybe it’s time to leave.

In the meantime Nathan discovers that having Abigail living with him is harder than he could have imagined, especially when he discovers she has found an interesting way to raise money for Amnesty International.

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As with all secrets, there comes a tipping point as Celeste deals with Perry, Madeline has a moment of realization about her life with Ed and Jane learns the truth about the bullying that is more shocking that she could have imagined and in one snap of time everyone’s life will change.

It is a moment that could save them or ruin them all.

Witherspoon as Madeline is a total spit-fire who doesn’t take crap from anyone. She goes from 0 to bitch in a split second but she had me cracking up the entire time. Probably because I recognize some of those qualities in someone I know. Witherspoon is fast talking, fast paced and tries to give this character so much to occupy her mind; it’s easy to see she has real problems that can not be avoided forever. I just loved her in this role.

Kidman as Celeste has the role of a woman torn by a life and a husband that she seems to adore. Being a part of her kid’s life is so important to this character that she is willing to put aside the mounting issues that are a frightening reality that can’t be hidden much longer. Kidman handles this role with elegance, grace and with a manner that puts everyone else’s needs before her own life. An amazing performance!

Woodley as Jane is a woman who is full of secrets and the time is coming where those secrets can’t stay hidden much longer. It served her well for a long time but as her son gets older it becomes clear daily that she needs to face her fears and face the truth of the life she has been hiding behind. Just so well done!

Dern as Renata is a woman who is in dire need of something, anything! This character is that woman who will do anything to make sure that everyone else follows her directions. That form of control is hiding the fear that she really feels and to watch it unravel is truly interesting. Dern has always been a favorite of mine and between BIG LITTLE LIES and her returning role in TWIN PEAKS: The Return, she continues to be high on my list.

Skarsgård as Perry is a nightmare to watch. His presence is loving at times but there are moments where you can see something else, something frightening and that means has Skarsgård done his role proper. Scott as husband Ed has more patience with his wife than I ever could have. Trying to be supportive and understanding, Madeline pushes the boundaries of that until he lets her know things have to change. I applauded when he stood up for himself!

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Kravitz as Bonnie is a yoga-practicing-health-food-eating step-mother to Abigail who drives Madeline to distraction. It is an interesting dynamic that happens in a lot of extended families. Tupper as Nathan is an ex-husband who doesn’t embrace his mistakes because he’s to busy trying to be super dad to make up for them.

Newton as Abigail is a teen character that just drives me nuts. Yes, I raised four teens and I can assure you none of them ever talked to me like that. It might have had something to do consequences because Abigail certainly didn’t seem to have any.

Other cast include Larry Bates as Stu, Larry Sullivan as Oren, Virginia Kull as Ms. Barnes, Merrin Dungey as Detective Quinlan, Hong Chau as Jackie, Santiago Cabrera as Joseph, PJ Byrne as Principal Nippal, Sarah Burns as Gabrielle, Sarah Baker as Thea Cunningham, Jeffrey Nordling as Gordon Klein and Joseph Cross as Tom.

HBO Home Entertainment has an extensive array of critically-acclaimed and groundbreaking programs found on Bluray, DVD and Digital HD. They have provided viewers with some of the most amazing programs with huge fan bases that include the shows True Blood, Sex and the City, The Sopranos, True Detectives, The Wire, Entourage and Game of Thrones. Launched in 1984, HBO is world wide in viewed entertainment in more than 70 territories around the world! For more of what they have to offer please visit www.hbo.com.

The Bluray and Digital HD includes the bonus features of About BIG LITTLE LIES – An extended behind-the-scenes look at the series with never-before-seen cast & crew interviews and Inside the Episodes with director Jean-Marc Vallee and writer David E. Kelley. Included as well is the Digital HD Ultraviolet that allows viewing on iTunes, television, computer, tablet and Smartphone.

BIG LITTLE LIES is an amazing limited series and I couldn’t help but binge watch on Bluray. There was no way I could sleep without knowing what was going to happen next and this cast made it all look so effortless. Witherspoon, Kidman and Woodley gave performances that were both intense, hilarious and stunning.

It is the story of the lives lived behind closed doors and the faces we put on to everyone else. It is about the secrets we keep from one another and the excuses given when the cracks begin to show. Most of all, BIG LITTLE LIES is a coming together when lives are torn apart which is stunningly done by Kelley and director Vallee.

I didn’t know what to expect from this HBO limited series but I can tell you that I would absolutely love if it were continued – at least for another season maybe? There is so much more of their stories to tell and by the end you will want to see more as well.

It’s time to experience BIG LITTLE LIES for yourself! We are giving away copies of the series and to discover how to get yours please visit http://moviemaven.homestead.com.

In the end – a perfect life is a perfect lie!

THE BEGUILED

beguiled

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres this Friday from director Sophia Coppola and Focus Features is a story of love, jealousy and one man in the middle of THE BEGUILED.

It is Virginia at the time of Civil War as head mistress Miss Martha (Nicole Kidman) keeps the students of her girls school hidden away from war. Teacher Miss Edwina (Kirsten Dunst) gives lessons to the young ladies Alicia (Elle Fanning), Amy (Oona Laurence), Jane (Angourie Rice), Marie (Addison Riecke) and Emily (Emma Howard).

Foraging in the woods, Amy finds Confederate Corporal McBurney (Colin Farrell) wounded up against a tree. Instead of alerting the Union soldiers, she takes him back to the school. Alarmed at what Amy has done, Miss Martha still takes the soldier inside being reminded it is the Christian thing to do. Tending to McBurney’s wounds, a decision is made that he will stay until well enough to be turned over to the Union Captain.

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Immediately McBurney’s presence begins to have an impact on the women and girls of the school. McBurney takes a keen interest in Miss Edwina and she shares her desire to be gone of the school. Miss Martha is also affected by his presence but she maintains an air of Southern hospitality and charm. It is Alicia (Elle Fanning) who makes it clear to McBurney that she is smitten with him.

As he begins to heal, McBurney helps around the grounds with gardening and fixing things. The tensions begin to rise when McBurney and Miss Edwina get closer but one slip brings disaster to the entire house. One fateful error brings a group decision that will change everything each of them thought about themselves and each other.

Kidman as Miss Martha is cool, calm and steadfast – even when her own womanly desires kick in. I love when Kidman puts on a corset and tight chignon and makes it clear that no one is going to mess with her, especially a Confederate soldier with an Irish brogue.

Farrell as McBurney is charming, dark and doing what ever it takes to survive. Lets be honest, he smolders on screen whether he wants to or not which adds to the intensity in many scenes. Dunst as Edwina is a woman clearly unhappy with life and feeling trapped inside the school. Her performance gives the faraway wants of this character on point.

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Fanning as Alicia is the teenage temptress who pretends to follow along with the rules but in fact is trying to find ways to break every one of them. Laurence as Amy wants to believe the best about McBurney and convinces everyone else to do the right thing. Rice as Jane is a mini-Miss Martha with Riecke as Marie and Howard as Emily round out the young girls trying to feel safe in the middle of a war.

In 1971 director Don Siegel brought THE BEGUILED to the screen with Clint Eastwood and Geraldine Page and I loved every frame of that storytelling. That’s what makes the 2017 version so difficult for me. Cinematically it is beautiful although I’m not sure how many shots of moss dangling from trees and the sounds of birds I could take over and over again.

The cast is amazing and I wouldn’t have changed a thing about that portion of the film. However, that being said, there is something greatly missing and I can’t even tell you what that is. I want to say it seemed the film just went through the motions but that would be insulting Farrell, Kidman, Dunst and the cast that clearly put their all into the film. It is probably my disappointment in the film being remade when the original stands on its own.

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I am not a fan of remakes, retellings, rethinkings, or reimaginings as anyone who knows me will tell you. I have said it over and over that the creativity seems to have gone out of Hollywood. Instead of presenting movie goers with new and amazing stories, it seems the decision makers believe that no one will complain if they just recycle (oh look, another “re”!) that they can get by.

This version of THE BEGUILED is a Saturday afternoon relaxing in front of the television type film that will lull the senses and for that I’m saddened. The costuming is stunning which adds a dimension of richness to southern sensibilities.

In the end – innocent until betrayed!

 

THE FAMILY FANG is Like No Other

the family fang

 

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres from director Jason Bateman and Starz Digital Media comes a look at a dysfunctional family like none we have seen before because they are THE FAMILY FANG.

This is the story of the Fang family led by Caleb Fang (Christopher Walken), wife Camille (Maryann Punkett), daughter Annie (Nicole Kidman) and son Baxter (Jason Bateman). As the kids were growing up they learned that their parents were not quite the stereotypical Mom and Dad. No, the Fang’s were performance artists who consistently tried to shock and awe the world with their film making.

Years later Annie is now an actress trying to find the roles that would give her some satisfaction but instead made a name for herself as a basket case. Baxter is now a writer and with one successful book and a second not-so-much, he is in the middle of writers block in a very over due manuscript.

fang 1

When Baxter’s agent gives him a chance to do an article, he sees it as a paying gig and does it. During the interview Baxter is injured and ends up in the hospital. Much to his distress the nurse says they called his parents to come and get him. In a panic he calls Annie begging her to rescue him from the clutches of the nutty parental units.

Going home again isn’t easy for either of them and within the first day they are each trying to find a way to run! Trying to make the best of things both Annie and Baxter actually slightly participate in their parent’s wacky new attempt at their art. When the day ends badly, Caleb tells the kids that he and Camille are off to the Berkshires for the weekend.

Thinking they had hit the jackpot, Annie and Baxter are relieved to see them go. One day later they receive a telephone call from the police saying their parent’s car has been found at a rest stop and there are signs of foul play. Annie immediately believes it is another stunt but Baxter isn’t so sure.

Now they both look back to look forward at what has happened to the parents they couldn’t wait to get away from!

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Bateman as Baxter once again performs brilliantly. This actor has the amazing ability to draw an audience in with his straight faced wit and delivery. As Baxter, Bateman portrays a man stuck in the affect the Fang artistry has had on him. Knowing his parents aren’t exactly normal, he doesn’t really know what normal is! It takes stepping back and looking at those family moments that gives him clarity to go forward. The final scene with Walking and Punkett made my jaw drop because in real life someone’s jaw would be dropping and not in a nice way!

Kidman as Annie is a ball of anxiety! Watching this character start out a hot mess means there is no way to go but up and Kidman does just that. She becomes super-sleuth and it consumes her but for reasons she isn’t ready to face. Taking a brother who doesn’t seen that interested in finding his parents on her journey, Kidman spells out every step of her reasoning and isn’t going to let these parents get away with anything. In the same final scene with the parents, I really enjoyed watching Kidman give Annie what she needed to stand up for herself.

Punkett as Camille is a surprising character to watch. Believing in the art, she supports Caleb and the audience will be shaking their heads thinking ‘what is wrong with this woman letting Caleb just run amuck?’ Trust me, that was my thought as well but Punkett is intriguing to watch from start to finish.

Walken as Caleb once again turns in such an amazing performance. The character of Caleb is such a domineering personality in a family that goes-along-to-get-along and never really sees the damage he is causing. Truly believing that he is right in his ideas of art, he doesn’t give much leeway in letting his wife and kids have an opinion about anything. I have always said that Walken has the ability to sell ice to an Eskimo and playing the role of Caleb is no exception. Caleb’s rants are so heartfelt and strong at the time until the dust settles – and it settles all over the family!

Other cast include: Marin Ireland as Suzanne Crosby, Michael Chernus as Kenny, Josh Pais as Freeman, and Linda Emond as Miss Delano.

fang 2

TUBS OF POPCORN: I give THE FAMILY FANG four tubs of popcorn out of five. I truly love this film because it is a mesh of comedy, drama, family dynamics, dysfunction, emotions, lack of emotions and realizations. In the first few frames I was wondering what the heck am I watching? Catching me off guard is a good thing because it only leaves every moment after riveting to watch.

THE FAMILY FANG has put together a cast that pulls off the twists, turns and quirks needed. Bouncing off one another there isn’t any one person that stands out when all four are on the screen and, the same is said when it is Bateman and Kidman on the parental hunt. They all make it work so beautifully and I enjoyed every moment of it.

If you are looking for a film that pushes the norm in family dysfunction yet still resembles your family, then hit the theatres this week to experience THE FAMILY FANG for yourselves. Actually, you might walk away appreciating your own family nuttiness.

In the end – the Fang’s dysfunctionally perform one frame at a time!

GRACE OF MONACO is Elegant on Bluray

 

grace

Jeri Jacquin

Coming to DVD from director Olivier Dahan, The Weinstein Company and Anchor Bay Entertainment is a story of beauty led by GRACE OF MONACO.

In 1956, world renowned actress Grace Kelly (Nicole Kidman) became royalty when she married Prince Rainier III (Tim Roth) of Monaco. Six years later, Grace begins to have difficulty in her marriage. Never quite feeling as if she fit into her new country, Alfred Hitchcock tries to lure her back with a starring role in his film MARNIE.

Monaco is itself in a crisis as Charles de Gaulle has threatened the country from without but there are also secrets and dissention from within. Grace leans on Francis Tucker (Frank Langella) who advises her that it is time to decide where her own heart and loyalty can be found – with Hollywood or Monaco.

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Kidman as Grace gives this beloved character all the charm and grace one would expect not only from Hollywood royalty but royalty of the crown kind. Kidman isn’t the spitting image of Kelly but that isn’t the point for me but instead, how this actress carried herself in the role of Kelly. Her speech at the Red Cross Ball is proving Kidman embraces the emotion needed to believe she is Her Serene Highness, Princess of Monaco.

Roth as Rainier gives the Prince the look of a man who wants the best for his country without the shackles and threats of France. Having spent so much time dealing with Monaco on his own, the slow change is well performed by Roth.

Langella as Tuck has a minor role but one that is important to Grace. Trying to help her adjust to life in Monaco, there comes the eventual realization that it is Grace that needs to decide and then stand behind either Hollywood or Monaco.

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Other cast include: Paz Vega or Maria Callas, Parker Posey as Madge, Milo Ventimiglia as Rupert Allan, Geraldine Somerville as Princess Antoinette, Nicholas Farrell as Jean-Charles Rey, Robert Lindsay as Aristotle Onassis, Derek Jacobi as County Fernando D’Aillieres, and Jeanne Balibar as Countess Baciochi.

The Weinstein Company has brought outstanding films to fans including INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS, THE KING’S SPEECH, THE ARTIST, DJANGO UNCHAINED and THE IMITATION GAME. Coming up in theatres in December is the new release of THE HATEFUL EIGHT.

Anchor Bay brings amazing entertainment to those extending their media library and is also celebrating their 20th Anniversary. From theatrical to home release, Anchor Bay brings STARZ Original series, AMC Network series, The Weinstein Company, Radius, children’s entertainment, fitness, and sports to fans. To discover more of what Anchor Bay Entertainment has to offer, please visit www.anchorbayentertainment.com.

TUBS OF POPCORN: I give GRACE OF MONACO four tubs of popcorn out of five. I truly enjoyed the film and mainly due to the performances of both Kidman and Roth. This is a couple like no other in that a Prince of a country and a Princess of Hollywood must find a middle ground at a time in history that needs them – together.

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Watching them both work their way through those that don’t accept Grace to the ruler of France threatening, Kidman and Roth give everybody a royal what-for! Watching their strong and stern scenes together, these two actors may start out on a bumpy road but not for long.

The costuming is absolutely elegant and lovely which adds so much to the film-era piece. From the gorgeous gowns and accessories to the cars and the palace, I have a secret love of any film that digs in deep using every aspect of storytelling to keep my interest.

GRACE OF MONACO is a 2015 Primetime Emmy Award Nominee for Outstanding Television Movie.

In the end – it is the greatest role she would ever play!

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