Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Female Friendly Flicks abound in the Fall Movie Trailer Park

It may not be easy to find films with strong female leads and story lines just about any time of year but sometimes, the fall season does offer more opportunities for such movies to make their presence known at the box office.

For example, literary adaptations are very fall friendly and we have at least two of them on the way with solid leading ladies at the helm. Carol, starring Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, is based upon Patricia Highsmith's novel The Price of Salt, which recounts a budding romance between a young department store clerk and an older woman.

Set in New York of the 1950s, director Todd Haynes is practically picture perfect for this film, which has already won two prizes at the Cannes Film Festival, with one going to Rooney Mara for Best Actress. The book is said to semi autobiographical and seeing an adaptation of Highsmith's work that isn't a murder mystery should be interesting. Also, it would be nice to see Blanchett and Mara get a matching pair of Oscar nominations out of this:

Saoirse Ronan is the headliner in Brooklyn, adapted by Nick Hornby from Colm Toibin's award winning novel. She plays Ellis Lacey, an Irish immigrant seeking a better way in that particular borough of New York in the fifties who finds herself having to choose between new loves and old loyalties.

She's backed up by a set of fine supporting players such as Julie Waters and Jim Broadbent , not to mention that this story seems to have the look of a big budget film done with some indie flair.

 I haven't read any of Toibin's work but his reputation is a good one and if this movie is an indication of the quality of his story telling, I won't be the only one seeking Brooklyn out at my local book seller:

 For something a bit more modern day, Julia Roberts stars in Secret In Their Eyes, where she plays Jess a FBI agent stunned by the murder of her daughter and then outraged when the local DA Claire(Nicole Kidman) has to let their best suspect go due to a technicality.

Years later, Jess is estranged from her former partner Ray(Chiwetel Ejiofor), who nevertheless comes back to town with a fresh lead on the case. However, a major secret that involves more than one person could be unleashed with devastating consequences. Jess's only goal,naturally, is to get justice for her child no matter what.

While this is an American remake of an Argentinian film(which won Best Foreign Film at the Oscars in 2010), many people are going to see this with fresh eyes. Comparisons will be undoubtedly made between both films but hopefully, this one stays true to the intent of the source material(the 2005 novel by Argentinian author Eduardo Sacheri) as well as the first film did:

For a laugh, we have another onscreen double team of Amy Poehler and Tina Fey in Sisters, as a pair of dippy siblings who have been summoned to clean out their former childhood bedrooms so that their parents can finally sell the house.

Not thrilled with that idea, the girls decided to throw a farewell party in order to make the best of things. There's quite the cast of comedians here, including Samantha Bee, Maya Rudolph and Rachel Dratch, along side actors like John Leguizamo, Dianne Wiest and James Brolin(who happen to be co-starring in a new TV series called Life in Pieces this fall) and for some damn reason, John Cena shows up, don't ask me why.

Don't get me wrong, I like Amy and Tina but this may be a take it or leave it kind of movie. Might be fun but it would help if the trailer didn't give away so many of the jokes there:

For sheer Oscar bait,however, I do think that Suffragette fits the bill nicely. Carey Mulligan is one of the major stars in this story about the women's rights movement in England during the late 1900s and early 20th century, which was pretty brutal at times.

Meryl Streep is on board as Emmeline Parkhurst, one of the influential leaders of the movement while Helena Bonham Carter plays Edith, one of the more radical members.Turns out that Bonham Carter is a descendant of H.S. Asquith, who was Prime Minister during 1908-16 and a huge opponent of the suffragettes. Nice bit of irony in that.

The movie will be in limited release this October in the US and probably in wider distribution after the Academy Award nominations are out but I hope that we don't have to wait too long for something this awesome looking to be readily available.

Doubts aside, we do have some films on the way that focus on women to look out for at the multiplex and if any or all of them do well with both critics and audiences, our cinematic blessings this season will be great indeed:

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