“Tom Cruise is many things. He is among our greatest living movie stars, in the traditional and best sense of that term, and a pleasure still, all these decades after his Risky Business breakout, to watch on screen.
At 56, he is a marvel of aging, a practical world wonder executing outrageous stunts of escalating danger, year after year (a flash of that dashing, confusingly youthful smile its own veritable human special effect).
He is the star of Mission: ImpossibleFallout, a film being gilded an action masterpiece, with critics straining their vocal chords cheering how it wows, thrills, and even fucks. It comes out this weekend, and it is very good!
Cruise is also a Scientologist. Did we remember that? I mean, of course we remember that. Its arguably the first thing someone thinks of when they think about Cruise at this point: his longtime stature as a high-ranking member and proponent of the Church of Scientology and his close relationship with its leader, David Miscavige. But Im just checking because, as Cruise takes his victory lap on this fawning press tour, the organization seems to be receiving nary a mention.
Listen, a person of Cruises stature and with such controversial baggage is never going to embark on a press tour that consists of anything but puff pieces and softball interviews adhering to warnings about forbidden questions and topics (chiefly: Scientology!). But that doesnt make its erasure any less aggravating, the media complicity in fostering an inaccurate image of an influential member of a reportedly oppressive organization any less irresponsible, and our collective willingness to accept all of this in the name of enjoying a badass movie any less damning.
For example, theres his appearance on Jimmy Fallons Tonight Show, which, I know, is not the venue that is going to interrogate Tom Cruise on the intricacies of Scientologys greatest atrocities, but is, you know, almost laughably endearing. He participated in a Mad Libs Theater bit with Fallon, and as headlines raved, couldnt keep a straight face! He can jump out of planes and save the free world from attackers, but Tom Cruise couldnt seem to hold it together on Mondays episode of The Tonight Show, wrote one recapper.
Then I came upon this weeks People magazine cover, which teases in its headline that it will take me Inside HIS PRIVATE WORLD for a revealing look at the life of Hollywoods most mysterious star. Oh snap! It turns out Cruise was even interviewed for the piece, a piece which opens with the actor saying, Ive wanted to make movies since I was 4 years oldTo be able to entertain an audience, that was my dream. Ohsnap……………..”
Emily Blunt on the pressure of playing Mary Poppins
Mary Poppins is a woman with a talent for putting things back together again.
“Which is why it’s rather apt that after 50 years, she’s returning to our screens at a time when the world is arguably most in need of being put back together.
And, Emily Blunt — who plays Mary Poppins in the upcoming sequel Mary Poppins Returns — is well aware of the impact her character has already had on the lives of those who watched the 1964 movie starring Julie Andrews.
Standing in full Edwardian get-up inside Shepperton Studios, Blunt told Mashable that she has fond memories of watching the film as a child. “The film, for me, and I think for most people, is one of those films that is seared into people’s memory, an emblem of their nostalgia in many ways,” says Blunt…………………………………………………”
How Willem Dafoe Learned to Paint like Van Gogh
Midway through artist-director Julian Schnabel’s new film At Eternity’s Gate, we see Vincent van Gogh, portrayed by actor Willem Dafoe, entirely consumed by the compulsion to paint. In the scene, the Dutch artist opens the door to his yellow-walled apartment in Arles, France, to find his friend, fellow artist Paul Guguin, sketching Madame Ginoux, a local café owner. Instantly compelled by what he sees, Van Gogh lunges into action, assembling his easel and grasping several paintbrushes in his left hand, while using his right to commit bold, feverish brushstrokes to canvas. His passion is enthralling—so much so, we forget that Dafoe is not a real painter at all.
At Eternity’s Gate envisions the final years of Van Gogh’s life, through a series of vignettes that straddle truth and fiction (much, though not all, is based on the trove of letters the artist left behind). We see his plight as an artist in Paris, his infatuation with the light and landscapes of Arles, and his declining mental health—including when he famously cut off his ear. But it’s not a straightforward account. “This isn’t a biopic, it doesn’t explain his life,” Dafoe recently explained at the New York Film Festival. “It’s really about painting.” Indeed, it is, first and foremost, the story of a painter as told by a painter: Schnabel, who is known for an idiosyncratic painting practice ranging from canvases covered in shattered plates to inkjet prints painted with purple-hued goats…………………………….”
Read the rest of the article here: https://www.artsy.net/article/artsy-editorial-willem-dafoe-learned-paint-van-gogh
‘Love Actually’ turns 15: Fun facts about the movie
“Often imitated, but never duplicated, ‘Love Actually’ and its star-filled cast have tugged at movie lovers’ heartstrings for well over a decade.
As we celebrate the 15th anniversary of the release of the film, take a look back at some of the fun stories, trivia tidbits and other notes about the film and its stars.
1. It was Richard Curtis’ directorial debut
The prolific screenwriter went on to direct ‘Pirate Radio,’ ‘About Time’ and the reunion short.
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