The One – Oscar Winner Matthew McConaughey

Matthew McConaughey

Matthew McConaughey most certainly is the One (‘…and only true gentlemen’- in the words of Dolce and Gabbana) this year. With his incredible performance in Jean Marc Vallee’s Dallas Buyers club, an incredible award season has followed and rightly so. Having already won the Golden Globe’s Best Actor, the SAG and Critic’s Choice Award for his portrayal of character Ron Woodroof, the sexy southern actor is now the proud owner of that ultimate gold statue.

Last night Matthew McConaughey won an Oscar for Actor in a Leading Role, in a very tough category, up against the likes of Wolf of Wall Street’s Leonardo di Caprio, American Hustle’s Christian Bale, 12 Year’s a Slave’s Chiwetol Eljifior and Nebraska’s Bruce Dern. And of course, the Dolce and Gabbana gentlemen accepted his Oscar dressed head to toe in Dolce and Gabbana, from the New Bond Street Dolce and Gabbana boutique concept store in London. This was McConaughey’s first Oscar nomination and his first win, but no doubt this is the start of many more to come.

Admittedly, I have a soft spot for Matthew McConaughey and have a commitment to watching the films he features in, like I have to watching the films starring Robert DeNiro and Denzel Washington. Of course McConaughey doesn’t quite have the universal status that DeNiro or Denzel has – yet. But there is something about him that does it for me, that has drawn me in and kept me watching his films over and over again, even when the themes haven’t been that deep – possibly the exact same something that does it for Dolce and Gabbana.

I first fell for the Texas born actor in A Time to Kill, a film I watched everyday for six weeks during my summer holidays many a years ago. Of course this was a very serious film and McConaughey played the fair and just lawyer, Jake Bragance. It could have been the moral and ethics of the character McConaughey played that made me develop a weak spot for him, but I think his perfect body, his sexy southern drawl and his spectacular looks at least had a little something to do with it.

Then I went on to enjoy him in romantic comedies like The Wedding Planner alongside Jennifer Lopez,  How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days alongside Jennifer Hudson, Failure to Launch with Sarah Jessica Parker and Fool’s Gold with Jennifer Hudson again. I even loved watching him in Surfer Dude, him being shirtless for ninety minutes will definitely have everything to do with that.

In recent years I have been taken away by his performance – and that accent again, in films outside of the Rom Com genre, especially the super sexy Magic Mike, the sad and touching Mud, the strange and slightly disturbing Killer Joe (that chicken scene),  his brilliance in the Wolf of Wall Street as Mark Hanna and now, last but by no means least, in his immense award winning performance in Dallas Buyer’s Club.

When I began this article Matthew McConaughey had 50, 600 social mentions, according to the Oscars Social Mentions counter – at the time of completion, he now has 64,964 and it’s rising by the second. I just had to be one of the thousands talking about Matthew McConaughey online today. So, to Matthew McConaughey, I salute you and am so looking forward to seeing what happens next!

Matthew McConaughey in A Time to Kill
Matthew McConaughey in A Time to Kill
Matthew McConaughey Surfer Dude
Matthew McConaughey Surfer Dude
Matthew McConaughey in Magic Mike
Matthew McConaughey in Magic Mike
Matthew McConaughey in Killer Joe
Matthew McConaughey in Killer Joe

Joining the Club: Matthew and his co-star looked delighted after scooping the prestigious paperweights

Touching moment: Perennial loser Leonardo DiCaprio embraced his rival following his win

Matthew McConaughey with wife and mother at Oscars 2014
Matthew McConaughey with wife and mother at Oscars 2014

Backstage romance: The affection was obvious as he met with his other half after collecting his award

Be Charmed, Stay Inspired! x

A New Realm of The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby, a love story made extraordinary by the sad yet perfectly characterised Jay Gatsby…

Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby
Jay Gatsby himself, ‘Old Sport!’

Last night F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby overwhelmed me once again, this time in a totally new realm. I have seen the 1974 Great Gatsby film, directed by Jack Clayton starring Robert Redford, watched those electric party scenes over and over again with complete awe – wishing myself there, reliving the novel I became enchanted by the first time I picked it up. And I’ve read the novel countless times, falling more and more in love with Fitzgerald and the world he penned so perfectly. Nevertheless,  that doesn’t take away from how special I found watching The Great Gatsby on the big screen last night.

No matter how many times I have read The Great Gatsby or, in fact, any of Fitzgerald’s novels, long or short, without fail I am guaranteed to be ignited by his acute characterisations, his ability to materialise the human condition so tenderly on paper and his faultlessly captivating descriptive writing that paints with clarity a very rich and colourful picture of the Roaring Twenties. To any writer, aspiring writer, literature enthusiast or lover of a good narrative, I have no doubt that Fitzgerald or his definitive novel The Great Gatsby will mean something to them too, for me Fitzgerald is the only writer I have come across thus far that inspires me to write and intimidates my writing on a daily basis. He is the writer that sets the bar and leaves that antagonising voice in the back of my head that says, ‘You’ll never write anything nearly as good as this.’

Watching Baz Lurhmann‘s The Great Gatsby last night was overwhelming and spectacular, of course for all my admiration and respect for Fitzgerald and the novel, but also because it would be the first time I would see this great American Classic come to life in my lifetime, with actors I am familiar with, fashion designers that I covet, fashion eras that I have studied and the Roaring Twenties, an epoch that I have fallen in love with, studied and written because of my admiration for Fitzgerald. The Great Gatsby, the 1920s, literature and fashion all mean so much more to me now than it did when I first read the novel, because since then I have had plenty of time to cultivate my understanding for each of these elements and neither of them has ever failed to keep my intrigue.

 After reading reviews that claimed that the 2013 film rendition of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s defining American Modern Classic was all style no substance, my heart plummeted, I wanted nothing more than for Baz Luhrmann and Leonardo Di Caprio to raise goosebumps across the world. The promotion had been nothing but alluring, the trailer was magnetic, the press was sending out the buzz accordingly, designers were creating Flapper inspired collections, features on Fitzgerald and Zelda filled the pages of the Fashion glossies for months before its release and in the lead up to the premiere The Great Gatsby and all things associated had gone viral on Social Media. It was a move that was truly ‘highly anticipated’ and had been set on a pedestal to be brilliant and I wanted nothing more than it to be so.

Admittedly I was apprehensive when I when I sat down to watch it, for it to be disappointing would have been heartbreaking. It takes moments to recognise the film is highly stylised, but with it it’s visually stunning and what of the novel can’t be conveyed  in film has been translated into a symbolism that evokes the senses that film calls upon. Gatsby was noisy, opulent and colourful hence you hear the music, because you’re familiar with it, you see the colour because it’s almost cartoonish and emphasised and you feel the opulence, because the entire film is exactly so – opulent at all angles. That’s the style, now the substance; I could argue that the style in itself has already offered up a pretty good foundation in itself, but  if that’s all a little too floaty, then Toby Maguire and Leonardo DiCaprio’s rendition of Nick Carraway and Jay Gatsby most certainly brought the film back down to earth with their weight and substance. Of course I expected Leonardo Di Caprio to be nothing short of impressive, for me he is up there with the greats of our time, and his performance was unsurprisingly superb. However,what I hadn’t expected was, to be so moved by Toby Maguire’s rendition of Nick Carraway. I suppose I have always been so fascinated by Fitzgerald’s creation of the character Jay Gatsby, that I hadn’t given much thought to what I might expect of Nick Carraway’s characterisation in the film. Toby Maguire evoked such a sympathy for Nick Carraway that it brought to the screen a character that was just as discernible and as moving as Jay Gatsby.

In my humble opinion, if you are going to watch Baz Luhrmann’s Great Gatsby this spring, don’t go expecting to see a perfect imitation of the pages you read in the book on screen – The Help was very successful at this achievement, as was Sam Mendes’ film adaptation of Nick Yates’ Revolutionary Road. Nevertheless, what you will see is a film director that has celebrated his visual medium by recreating the tale of The Great Gatsby in a way that is entirely exclusive to film and what you should appreciate is the chance to experience the novel in a whole new dimension.

I’ll put my hands up and say, I am no film writer and that I am writing this on account of the fact that any chance I get to talk about, read about or write about Fitzgerald I will do so, but what I will say is, I wasn’t disappointed. Half way through the film I took a moment to appreciate how immersed and possessed I was by this visual marvel. The hairs on my arms were raised, my senses were stirred and there I was again, like when I read the novel, wishing myself at those parties, guessing Gatsby, growing angry at Daisy Buchanan, tingled by Carraway’s observations, hating Tom Buchanan, loving Gatsby, then feeling sorry for him, then empathising with him…. For me, watching the film was just another way I could run in the playground of the world that was F. Scott Fitzgerald and again, I was ignited. 

Leonardo DiCaprio - Gatsby
The Great Gatsby – Daisy comes for tea
Toby Maguire - The Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby party scene
The Great Gatsby Flappers
Great-Gatsby-Flappers at the party scene
Daisy, Nick, Jay Gatsby and Tom
Daisy, Nick, Jay Gatsby and Tom party scene at Gatsby’s
The Great Gatsby party scene
The Great Gatsby party scene – exquisite!

Be charmed, stay inspired! x      

L’Odyssee de Cartier – Cartier Commercial

Cartier…Connoisseurs of class…

Allow your eyes to wonder into the world of Cartier, captured by director Bruno Aveillan.

I think the words that instantly come to mind are enchanting and beautifully haunting.

What a masterpiece.

Be Charmed, Stay Inspired x

Google Chrome: Dear Sophie

Google Chrome: Dear Sophie, an Advert by Google 2011.

Because I love this advert just as much as I love Google Chrome!

You almost can’t help but shed a tear.

Be charmed, stay inspired. x

Analyze This

Analyze This 1999, starring Robert De Niro, directed by Harold Ramis….

I have spent the day recovering from my New Years Eve celebration watching films back to back. It started with Mr Magorium’s Wonder Emporium, Richie Rich, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Ratatouille and now, one of the films I can never watch too many times, with the actor who never tires, Robert De Niro in Analyze This. Because I absolutely adore this film, and am always amused by De Niro’s right hand man Jelly, I just had to make a note of this quote.

Analyze This

Jelly: I’m gonna get a bite to eat. You wanna sandwich or somethin’?

Guard: What kind of sandwich ain’t too fattening?

Jelly: A half a sandwich.

Lady Gaga – Marry the Night

“For example, those nurses, they’re wearing next season Calvin Klein and so am I. And the shoes? Custom Giuseppe Zanotti. I tipped their gauze hats to the side like Parisian berets because I think it’s romantic and I also believe that mint will be very big in fashion next spring.”

Lady Gaga’s official music video hit YouTube on the 2nd of December 2011 and as it stands today, has accumulated a colossal 15, 562, 509 viewers. The thirteen minute long self directed music film,  in typical Lady Gaga manner, is a feast of creativity – the mental institution scenes appearing to have taken inspiration from the 1999 film, Girl Interrupted, starring Angelina Jolie and Winona Ryder.  

For those who are particularly enthused by Lady Gaga for her unique and odd-ball fashion choices, this film is brimming with fashion references and visuals that make Lady Gaga’s aesthetic choices a combination of design that is interesting to look at, fused with a sharp fashion knowledge and a desire to be alternative. 

Naturally we expect Gaga to sport household designers such as Chanel, Calvin Klein, Giuseppe Zanotti and Christian Louboutin. The denim ensemble she wears, claiming to have ‘wreaked havoc on an old pair of jeans with her BeDazzler’, is a custom made Versace ensemble. But her fashion savoire-faire is demonstrated in  a chic ivory jacket with contrast black trim and emphasised shoulders taken from Moschino‘s spring summer 1993 collection.  The plaform, heel-less shoes and the black sculpted crop top and short suit, which she wears with thigh high Christian Louboutin boots, demonstrates Lady Gaga’s abilty to go to extra lengths for individual style and design. The heel-less sparkly silver platform shoe and the eccentric ballet pointe shoe she wears whilst dancing on the ballet bar are designed by Noritaka Tatehana. The cripling shoes have seen Gaga papped tumbling to the floor. The sculpted crop top and shorts ensemble is designed by visual artist Leeroy New, famed for designing the sculpted muscle dress.   

“Even though the fashion’s important, for the first time, it didn’t dictate every single moment,” Gaga told MTV USA, “the aesthetic was more driven by the emotion of the song and the feeling of New York City. It was more cinema, art-house inspired.”

Enjoy…x

Related articles

We Love Films About Infidelity

Top 5 Films About Infidelity…

A scene from Eyes Wide Shut

It is probably apt, to save myself from being shunned by society like Hester Prynne, to point out that the subject of this particular blog post was inspired a conversation I once had with a friend. I am not having an afair, nor am I planning to have one at this juncture – albeit, if I was, it would hardly be declared on the world wide web. Anyhow, I digress. My friend and I were at the Eric Roberson concert at the Indig-o2, and as much as I adore Eric Roberson and as much as I loved the concert, I was slightly disappointed by the fact that he didn’t perform my favourite song off his Music Fan First album, titled A Tale of Two. The song is about cheating, which got my friend and I talking on the topic of songs concerned about being unfaithful. ‘Have you noticed that the best songs are about cheating?’ I asked her. Well, have you noticed?

My partner and I came home from a night at McQueen last Saturday, both falling asleep in the taxi home. We got in and switched on the TV to our delight to find Adrian Lyne‘s Unfaithful on. Regardless of how many times we have both seen the film and regardless of how tired we both were, Unfaithful kept us up, watching the entire film and then discussing it after it had finished.

The world cannot deny it, we Adore a Love Story just as much as we Lust after a tale debauchery and affairs. There is something unmistakably fantastic and brave, but mostly, disturbingly interesting about those who have no qualms with honouring their carnal desires. Particularly when it causes one to throw all caution to the wind and compromise the ‘harmonious unity’ they have created with a significant other, to enter a world which is often unstable, turbulent and created off the back of hurt and betrayal. Films, novels and songs concerned with lust and infedility are interesting because, as though by natural reflex, they instantaneously engage us and they instantly force us on this trail of thought, which probably resembles something like this… ‘What a terrible woman’ ‘Men are all dogs’ ‘See, that’s why you can’t trust anybody’ ‘If so and so ever did that to me they wouldn’t live to tell the tale’ ‘How can they live with themselves’ ‘That’s so hot’ ‘Good for HER, HE deserved it’ ‘What would I do in that situation?’ ‘Could I ever do that?’ ‘I wish I was brave enough to do that’ ‘It’s not worth the risk’.

Some may argue that art forms that cash in on such cheap emotion are indeed cheap. It doesn’t cost much to move someone when concerning matters of the heart, so indeed, it is all about the artistry that surrounds it.

My favourite films about or involving infidelity…and the songs that inspired this post:

Stanley Kubrick‘s Eyes Wide Shut 1999 starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman

Eyes Wide Shut Movie Poster
Eyes Wide Shut directed by Stanley Kubrick, starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman

I have to start with Stanley Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut 1999, starring Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman. I could go on forever about this film…but that’s for another post. Tom Cruise plays New York city doctor Bill Harford married to Nicole Kidman who plays Alice Harford. Jealousy causes Alice to reveal to her husband that she was once on the verge of being unfaithful. This fuels Bill to traul the streets of New York to embark on his own sexual expedition, an expedition which includes an encounter with a prostitute and a quasi-religious sexual ceremony which involves cloaked and masked men having orgies with beautiful women in a mansion in a secret location.

Fatal Attraction 1987: Directed by Adrian Lyne starring Michael Douglas and Glenn Close.

Fatal Attraction Movie Poster
Fatal Attraction 1987: Directed by Adrian Lyne starring Michael Douglas and Glenn Close.

Tag Line: On the other side of drinks, dinner and a one night stand, lies a terrifying love story.

Michael Douglas plays happily married lawyer Dan Gallagher. However, Dan decides to embark on some extra curriculur activity with his colleague Alex Forrest, played by Glenn Close, while his wife and children are away for the weekend. It’s the one night stand from hell.

Unfaithful 2002: directed by Adrian Lyne, starring Richard Gere, Diane Lane and Olivier Martinez

Unfaithful Movie Poster

Tag Line: If you had the opportunity, would you?

Unfaithful 2002: Yet another adulterous film directed by Adrian Lyne, starring Richard Gere, Diane Lane and Olivier Martinez. This is a simple tale of a woman who has it all, a beautiful home, a family and a loving husband, but it just doesn’t seem to be enough. She begins an affair, but the guilt soon becomes too much for her to handle.

Non ti Muovere – Don’t Move 2002: directed by Sergio Castellitto, starring Sergio Castellitto and Penelope Cruz

Non ti Muovere, Don't Move Movie Poster
Non ti Muovere – Don’t Move 2002: directed by Sergio Castellitto, starring Sergio Castellitto and Penelope Cruz.

Non ti Muovere – Don’t Move 2002: directed by Sergio Castellitto, starring Sergio Castellitto and Penelope Cruz. This italian film sees the upper-crust doctor, Timoteo, played by Sergio Castellitto, replay the memories of his affair with a depleted and impoverished woman named Italia, played by Penelope Cruz, who falls pregnant for him.

Vicky, Cristina Barcelona 2008: directed by Woody Allen, starring Scarelet Johansson, Penelope Crus, Javier Bardem and Rebecca Hall

Vicky Cristina Barcelona Movie Poster
Vicky, Cristina Barcelona 2008: directed by Woody Allen, starring Scarelet Johansson, Penelope Crus, Javier Bardem and Rebecca Hall.

 Tag Line: Life is the ultimate work of art…

Vicky, Cristina Barcelona 2008: directed by Woody Allen, starring Scarelet Johansson, Penelope Crus, Javier Bardem and Rebecca Hall. Cristina, played by Johansson and Vicky, played by Hall, both fall for Juan Antonio, played by Bardem. The only problem is, Vicky is engaged to be married. The girls spend a weekend spent with Juan Antonio, which leads Vicky and Juan Antonio sleeping together. While Vicky can’t get the memories of her time with Juan Antonio out of her mind, he begins a relationship with single and free spirited Cristina. Naturally Vicky never tells Cristina off their fling, nor of the jealousy that is grown inside of her since watching her friend with Juan. Cristina and Juan Antonio’s relationship takes unconvential shape when Juan’s ex-girlfriend, Cruz, enters the picture.

A list of other films on the subject:

Match Point 2005: Directed by Woody Allen, starring Scarlet Johansson, Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Emily Morimer.

Lemmings 2005: Directed by Dominik Moll, starring Charlotte Gainsbourg, Charlotte Rampling and Laurent Lucas.

Derailed movieposter

Derailed 2005: Directed by Michael Hafstrom, starring Clive Owen and Jennifer Aniston

Indecent Proposal 1993: Directed by Adrian Lyne (starting to see a pattern?) starring Woody Harrelson, Demi Moore and Robert Redford.

Jungle Fever 1993: Directed by Spike Leee, starring Wesley Snipes and Annabella Sciorra

What Lies Beneath 2000: Directed by Robert Zemckis, starring Michelle Pfeifer and Harrison Ford

This blog post was inspired by these songs:

Eric Roberson A Tale of Two

John Legend She Don’t Have to Know

Dwele – Cheating on my Girl

 

The Roots ft Musiq Soulchild Break You Off

Jennifer Aniston Films Worth Watching

 Jennifer Aniston Films with a little less Hollywood and far more worth watching…

At large, a film starring Jennifer Aniston is usually a pretty  nondescript one. As an audience we generally don’t expect a film featuring the ex-Friends actress to venture outside of the Rom-Com, Chick Flick genres. Very few of her films are particularly notable and, barring  the most recently, Horrible Bosses, The Break Up, in which she stars alongside one of my favourite comedy actors Vince Vaughn and Derailed alongside Clive Owen, as likeable as she is and as amazing as her body is, her films don’t tend to be particularly memorable.

It would appear that Jennifer Aniston is the go to girl for lighthearted undemanding mediocrity. And for that very reason, in preparation for my Saturday night in alone, alongside my pizza and Ben and Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Brownie purchase yesterday, I also bought myself  a film in which Jennifer Aniston starred in – Friends With Money

Aside from seeking lighthearted entertainment, I suppose like the aforementioned films The Break Up and Horrible Bosses, I was also drawn to Friends With Money because of Jennifer Aniston’s co-stars, namely Frances McDormand. I discovered McDormand in one of her many appearances in the Coen brothers‘ films Fargo, and have ever since considered her a credible actress.

Friends With Money 

I found Friends With Money to be pleasantly surprising. Although the cast is pretty Hollywood, there’s a nice indie tone to the film. Jennifer Aniston plays Olivia, an ex-teacher currently working as a maid, who hasn’t figured out what she really wants to do with her life just yet. Unlike her friends, Aniston has no children, no money or husband and has to circulate beauty halls to blag herself samples of Lancome and Chanel face creams, that she otherwise cannot afford to buy.

However, what makes this film particularly notable to me are the issues residing in Aniston’s friends and their marriages. McDormand is tired of life and always angry, Catherine Keener is growing intolerable of her clearly loveless marriage and both McDormand and Keener believe the richest couple of the group, Joan Cussack and Greg Germann, are in a sexless marriage. Of course, only those behind closed doors know what’s going on behind closed doors and we soon learn that Cussack and Germann are not only very rich and very happy, but they do very much have sex.

…It’s not an epic film, nor is it majorly profound – but it is a film that holds a little more weight than most Aniston films and a film that I really quite enjoyed enough to want to add it to my Charms of a Dandizette film list.

The Good Girl

Another Aniston film that may be a little less Hollywood and more obscure is her role in The Good Girl 2002. Aniston stars alongside Jake Gylenhaal and John C Reily, both known for their appearances in indie films; Gylenhaal in Donnie Darko and John C Reily most recently in Cyrus.  It is to be noted that I have a distinct love for art house film, so The Good Girl being an independent film is by far my favourite Jennifer Aniston film.

In the film Aniston plays thirty year old Justine. She works as a shop assistant in a parodied Wal – Mart supermarket called Retail Rodeo and lives a mundane life in a small town, married to her procrastinating husband played by John C Reily. As a means of escape,  Aniston, bored and trapped in her life, ends up having an affair with her new co-worker played by Gyllenhaal. For those, like myself, that are fans  of J.D Sallinger or are at least fans of The Catcher in the Rye, this film is a particular treat. Gyllenhaal amusingly believes that he is Holden Caulfield and doesn’t seem to be able to tear himself away from a copy of the novel. Holden and Justine eventually fall in love with each other, leading Justine to seriously start questioning her marriage, her happiness and the life that she has been trapped in.

For those who prefer their films with a little less Hollywood, Friends with Money and The Good Girl are definitely worth a watch…

Julia Leigh’s Sleeping Beauty

Julia Leigh’s Sleeping Beauty 2011

Emily Browning sleeping Beauty
Lucy, the Sleeping Beauty, drugged and awaiting a male customer

Advised by October’s  UK Elle Magazine, I watched Julia Leigh’s Sleeping Beauty, starring Emily Browning and Rachel Blake.

What I found particularly captivating about this film is it’s ability to haunt and disturb. Emily Browning plays Lucy, a young, evidently promiscuous girl, struggling to pay her rent and working a number of jobs to make ends meet. She stumbles upon a job in the papers, working as an Escort.  This is then preceded by the first of many sexual and particularly unnerving scenes. I won’t reveal too much about the scenes, as I am guessing there are many still yet to watch this film. But it’s tone sits somewhere in between Stanley Kubrick‘s Eyes Wide Shut, with Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman and Steven Shainberg‘s The Secretary starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and James Spader.

What’s magnificent about this film, is its ability to push boundaries. It pushes our own personal boundaries and our boundaries as a collective society. I personally think that the old men in this film that desire to lay in bed next to Lucy, a young woman who has consented to being drugged so that men can manipulate her body, are disgusting and I’m pretty sure that society would agree. However, regardless of  how dangerous many of the situations Lucy puts herself in and regardless of how hypocritical this may be, there are definitely  moments that I found her to be empowering as a woman. And these are my own personal boundaries.

I found Julia Leigh’s portrayal of this young girl unbelievably authentic and acute. Lucy is shockingly a very prominent type of young girl that I believe exists in today’s society.  She’s numbed to the dangers of sex, the unkown, vulnerability, and consequently, unashamedly self confident – to the point it’s almost scary. We hear a lot about women with body issues  and we see how damaging such issues can be combined with low self esteem and low confidence levels. Is Lucy the extreme oposite? Powerful,confident and not afraid to put herself out there because she’s beautiful? She uses her body and her beauty as currency, but not because she has to. Her character throughout the film reveals that she is inclined to this behaviour. She appears to enjoy promiscuity, however, it is debatable that she hasn’t even considered herself as promiscuous. Which then leaves me to conclude, that she merely enjoys the powers of her beauty.

Whether this film celebrates or demeans feminism, I’ll leave that for you to decide.

Inspired by: Robert De Niro

Inspired by Robert De Niro

Robert De Niro is the likely star player in the world’s selection of films that we’ll watch as a collective, till the day we die.

Robert De Niro in Taxi Driver
Robert De Niro in Taxi Driver...You Talkin' to Me?

There are many actors and directors whose back catalogue I would like to purchase someday, perhaps when I decide to stop devoting my entire pay cheque to my wardrobe. If any of my friends are reading, Tom Cruise and Martin Scorsese are way up there at the top. But, naturally, at the very tip of the top sits Robert De Niro. Anyone who truly knows me will know that I have a special affection for Robert De Niro… then again, who doesn’t? He is sheer brilliance. The best actor of his time.

Robert De Niro is the star player of my collection of films that I’ll watch till the day I die. You know those films that you’ll watch every three months, and even though you have the film on DVD, you’ll still watch it every time it’s aired on TV and it never ever gets tired. In fact, the familiarity of the film is exciting and learning all of the lines is an achievement.

 Of course there are other actors and films that feature in this list that have nothing to do with De Niro, but De Niro dominates. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’ve watched Analyze This and Analyze That, starring De Niro alongside Billy Crystal. Of course, I’ll always enjoy watching the Meet the Fockers’ trilogy. Yes, including the third one, that didn’t particularly receive rave reviews. Naturally, The Godfather’s One and Two, Goodfellas and Casino – are films the world will watch as a collective forever. It’s needless to say that A Bronx Tale is placed firmly on this list. My partner and I have joked that this particular film will play on a loop, projected on a screen at our wedding – corny I know, but that tale is ours. (Possibly before I had watched Leon: The Professional, A Bronx Tale may have been my favourite film of all time).

There are a few actors that I can say I have watched most of their films, or that I would even want to. I have found myself enjoying most of the films that Tom Cruise stars in, barring Knight and Day, from Risky Business and Top Gun to Tropic Thunder and the Mission Impossibles. (Mission Impossible 4 rapidly approaching!) It could be possible that the only Tom Cruise film I haven’t seen is Valkyerie, which I have little interest in seeing anyhow.  Eventually, I would like to say that I have watched every single Robert De Niro film…and so far I’m not doing too badly.

Until last week, the most recent films I had watched De Niro perform in were; Limitless, alongside Bradley Cooper. Everyone’s Fine, in which he plays a touching role – a father worried about his adult children, whose hectic lives have left him shut out of their worlds. And of course, the infamous Jack Burns in Meet the Little Fockers!

Last week I watched Cape Fear, starring De Niro alongside Nick Nolte, for the first time. ‘What’s it about?’ I asked my partner. He explained De Niro as a disturbed ex-con and I was immediately excited. There’s something great about films that question people’s sanity or simply displays their insanity – Tom Hardy in Bronson, Brad Pitt in Twelve Monkeys and Fight Club, Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, The Shining and As Good as it Gets and finally, Javier Camara in Almodovar’s Hable Con Ella.

I have always taken a particular pleasure in watching De Niro play those marginal psychotic characters he played in the earlier stages of his career; Rupert Pupkin in Martin Scorsese’s The King of Comedy 1983, alongside Jerry Lewis and Diane Abbott. And Tavis Bickle in another Scorsesee film, Taxi Driver 1976, alongside Jodie Foster and Cybill Shepherd.  In Cape Fear De Niro plays Max Cadey, a convicted rapist seeking revenge on the lawyer, Nick Nolte, who defended him. Indeed, De Niro plays another slightly deranged character.  However, unlike many of the films that De Niro stars in, this is not one of them that I can add to my list of films that I’ll continue to watch intermittently till the day I die.

Nevertheless, like Tom Cruise in Knight and Day, I am more than happy to add Cape Fear to my list of De Niro films.