Went to a test screening last night of The Butler...
And though it isn't perfect, it's far from an "instant camp classic" as described in another thread.
I trust Dick Morris more than this bitch.
How many Oscars will it win?
Oprah crap fest. Would rather hear about Jake Gylenhaal and Chris Pine joining Depp and Streep in Into the Woods.
The Forrest Gump of racism.
The Weinsteins must have other Oscar bait on their shelves because I read that they are dumping this in August.
The test screening was held last night at a theater in Union Square.
I won't go overboard in my praise about this one although many of you seem to have gotten a kick out of it when I've done it in the past. This, however, is a beautifully directed film with an absolutely great cast from top to bottom. This will be THE film to beat for the SAG Awards for Best Cast of a Motion Picture. It will be remembered at Oscar time. It has flaws but no major ones. It's an intense emotional film which takes one man through decades serving US presidents. Forest Whitaker is wonderful as Cecil, a damaged soul whose childhood abruptly endedwhen his father was shot in the head in front of him. After a redemption scene a la Les Miserables (yes, I had to bring that one up) he works in a fancy hotel before becoming a member of the White House staff as a butler. He serves from the Eisenhower administration straight on through the Reagan administration. Throughout this time the civil rights movement is moving forward and his son Lewis is caught up in
it to an extraordinary degree, even being one of the passengers on the Freedom Bus which was torched by
the KKK. The relationship between Cecil and his wife Gloria (Oprah Winfrey) becomes affected both by his job and their son's involvement in the movement. Gloria has a drinking problem and ends up in an affair with a married neighbor (Terence Howard). The father and son become deeply estranged when Lewis joins the Black Panthers. The family relationships are the true core of this story, not his service in the White House.
There are many, many terrific performances in this. Whitaker is a tower of strength with an underlying rage which threatens to bubble up but rarely does due to the nature of his work. I was certainly not a fan of her work in The Color Purple but Oprah Winfrey is very affective as
Gloria. She's beautifully directed by Lee Daniels. Is it an Oscar winning performance? Probably not. There is a long scene with her and the Terence Howard character which seems partly improvised which I could have done without. David Oyewolo is perfect as the son. It's actually astonishing how convincing he is as the teenage Lewis when Oyewolo is in his 30s. He ends up in his 60s by the end of the movie. Cuba Gooding Jr is excellent as a colleague at the White House (probable Oscar nomination for him). Lenny Kravitz is incredibly handsome, sweet and funny as another colleague. Among the presidents James Marsden is the real surprise as JFK. All the actors who
play the presidents have very small roles but Marsden brings something very special and human to Jack. John Cusack is very good as Nixon-you easily understand why Cecil doesn't like him from when Tricky Dick was Eisenhower's VP.
I could have done without some of Whitaker's voice overs in the film. I don't think we need to know that that his heart was captured by the Kennedys. And although slavery was obviously a heinous system of persecution I just didn't care for Cecil equating plantations with concentration camps. There, I said it. Flame away.
The release date has been pushed forward from October to August. Good move. The Help, with which this film bears a certain resemblance, was also released in August. Both movies are sprawling, episodic stories of struggle and oppression. This one, I feel, is the stronger one in many ways. I think it will click with audiences and will serve to educate many about a very ugly chapter in our nation's history. The director Lee Daniels has delivered a knock-out of a movie and I'd be very surprised if it isn't appreciated and honored.
Rumor has it that Oprah will win Best Actress. Heard that from Harvey Weinstein.
Oh bless the lovely Lynn Stairmaster. I knew it would be her.
I want to know what those new Marion films are like so fill us in when you can!
Yuck. Oprah improvising with Terrence Howard? You had me at goodbye. Pass. Nothing about Jane Fonda?
[quote]This will be THE film to beat for the SAG Awards for Best Cast of a Motion Picture. It will be remembered at Oscar time.
Could we expect anything less from Lynn Stairmaster?
Remember: she told us not only that "les Miserables" would win at least fifteen Oscars, but that [bold]the child who played Gavroche[/bold]--!!!!!--would be nominated for an Oscar.
Oh Lynn, you suck up harder than Nicole Kidman at Cannes. Did they give you the 75 dollars in a bag to post this?
You see why movie publicists keep inviting Lynn Stairmaster to these advance screenings: she immediately gets on the Internet afterwards and predicst that everyone in the film is going to be nominated for an Oscar.
Lynn, you are truly the movie publicist's #1 friend.
If Oprah is the main selling point, this could bomb.
LS, who plays Jackie HO? How was Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan?
What is Marion Cotillard going to win an Oscar for this year, Lynn?
Oh, how predictable some of you turned out to be right out of the starting gate. I actually think your boiling rage pointed at my direction might have something to do with the fact that I've happened to have had the opportunity to see the likes of W.E., Les Miserables and now this one months before the rest of you.
Oprah does a good job in the role, not a great job. She's effective. She doesn't tear your heart out the way that Viola Davis would have. But Daniels directs her extremely well. He's an amazing actor's director. I doubt Mo'Nique would have been as brilliant as she was in Precious without someone like Daniels guiding her. Winfrey is a non-actor but her lack of natural ability doesn't stick out as awkwardly as it could and I'd give most of the credit to Daniels. She doesn't even deserve an Oscar nomination for her work in this but she might if there isn't a heavy competitive field. If she gets a slot over Marion Cotillard for The Immigrant or Blood Ties I will not be happy.. Hee hee, hah hah.
Someone I forgot to mention is the young man who plays the couple's younger son Charlie. We didn't get a cast crawl so I don't know what his name was but he was sensational. He brings humor (along with Cuba Gooding Jr) to the film which is desperately needed. He's only in two scenes but both of them are showstoppers.
Does Jane Fonda open the goddamn door?
Jane Fonda is in only one small scene as Nancy Reagan, she asks Cecil to attend a state dinner with Gloria. We're meant to see it as a kind gesture at first yet we soon find out the Reagans only did it for show.
Melissa Leo (Mamie Eisenhower) has been cut from the film altogether.
Minka Kelly as Jacqueline Kenned has a few words to say but that's it. Jackie's quiet refusal to take off her blood-ostained clothing following her husband's assassination is a very good moment, though. I don't think a scene with Cecil reading a story to little Caroline was terribly necessary.
Robin Williams is just OK as Eisenhower, he has maybe two small scenes. Same with Alan Rickman as Reagan. The only ones who have relatively strong moments are Marsters as JFK, Cusack as Nixon and Liev Schreiber as LBJ. They skip Jimmy Carter although his portrait can be prominently seen at one point.
Thanks Lynn - I'll look for this at WalMart.
Lynne, I love your advance screening reports...even if you're more generous than Jeffrey Lyons in your critiques.
Heh heh, thanks, R20.
I apologize for the typos above.
If I was a PR shill which some of you accuse me of being why would I criticize Winfrey's performance? I wouldn't. Harvey might get her a nomination (and it should be for Best Supporting Actress) but she won't win. No way.
Mariah Carey plays Cecil's mother who is raped by Thomas, the plantation owner at the beginning of the film. He is played by the impossibly gorgeous Alex Pettyfer. Carey never says a word, her character is catatonic following the rape. Vanessa Redgrave has a few good moments as Thomas' mother who teaches little Cecil to read but is not exactly a warm and fuzzy grandmotherly type.
It must be stressed that the scenes of young Lewis participating in the civil rights movement are harrowing. There's a particularly difficult to watch sequence in which a group of black students sit at the counter of a diner and are attacked for not sitting in the Negro section. But these sequences are expertly directed and not excessive.. I shudder to think what Spike Lee would have done with this material.
[quote]I actually think your boiling rage pointed at my direction
More like mild and bemused disdain.
[quote]might have something to do with the fact that I've happened to have had the opportunity to see the likes of W.E., Les Miserables and now this one months before the rest of you
BWAH HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA HAHAHAHAHAHA!
*wipes tears of joy away from eye*
Oh yeah, we all wanted to see "W.E." so desperately!!!
Uhhh, yeah, you did, R22, because it was directed by Madonna.
There is a very famous casting director called Lynn Stalmaster (a man, not a woman) -- maybe some of you here knew that, but it was news to me when I happened to read something about him the other day. I always wondered why DL's Gene Shalit referred to him/herself as Lynn Stairmaster...
How would Mariah Carey and Alex Pettyfer have a child that looks like Forest Whitaker? Hell, MC and Nick Cannon didn't have children that look like FW. Or is it just a random rape scene and not Cecil's conception?
[quote]Uhhh, yeah, you did, [R22], because it was directed by Madonna.
Oh, honey, [italic]no.[/italic] Not even the slightest bit.
This sounds like a terrible t.v. movie! Oprah is not getting my $12.
Is Oprah a lead or a supporting?
R25, Thomas the plantation owner isn't Cecil's dad. His father is shot dead by Thomas.
Sorry to disappoint but Pettyfer doesn't show any skin in this. I sure wish Lenny Kravitz did because that is one beautiful man.
Did Lee Daniels get to fuck Alex Pettyfer? That's the only way that no-talent can get cast these days.
please answer my question!!
Lynn, I HATE your taste in film. You are so off on every single one of your reviews, at least to me. But I LOVE your pluck! You just keep on coming here and begging to be picked. I would so want to have a drink with you, just not see a movie after.
[quote]Carey never says a word, her character is catatonic following the rape.
Ugh! Who'd want to even have consensual sex with Mariah, let alone rape her? Couldn't they find someone a little more attractive for the role?
[quote]He's an amazing actor's director. I doubt Mo'Nique would have been as brilliant as she was in Precious without someone like Daniels guiding her.
Holy shit, apparently you haven't seen "Shadowboxer" or the embarrassing performances of "The Paperboy". Mo'Nique's performance was courtesy of Mo'Nique.
MELISSA LEO - CUT FROM FILM?
That was a performance I was looking forward to seeing.
I laughed at r17 - but isn't that Mary Fisher (She-Devil)?
R32, you sound like someone I'd want to have a drink with, too. I don't know if it's "pluck" that brings me back here to express my views on films I've seen at test screenings, though. I really do enjoy the attacks on some level, they can be quite amusing.
M, you have nothing to worry about re: Oprah. I haven't seen August: Osage County yet but I sense your performance in it will blow everybody else away, including my beloved Marion.
R34, your post makes no sense.
Good catch, R24. Lynn Stalmaster was THE casting director back in the day.
Back to The Butler-another performance to single out is Yaya Alafia (sp?) as Carol Hammie, the love interest of Lewis. Carol's exquisitely pretty but also has intelligence and, uhh, pluck. She endures several hideous experiences while participating in civil rights exercises and ends up being radicalized. She looks like Angela Davis if she was hot. There is a FABULOUS scene where Oprah's character Gloria calls her a low-class bitch for belching at the dinner table. And Gloria then smacks her son Lewis for calling Sidney Poitier an Uncle Tom. That is one great scene.
Yes, Mary Fisher.
Oprah is getting the Oscar, I just have that feeling.
Wait, wait, wait...MINKA KELLY is playing JACKIE O?!??!
I can't fucking wait to see this. If it's anything less than the new Showgirls, I'll be bitterly disappointed.
Not when I have Grace of Monaco out Dec. 27. I am the only one of Kevin's Angels who actually blows Harvey. Kisses from Cannes, Nicole
I heard from someone close to the production that the film has been scoring through the roof at these test screenings. And that Oprah is amazing in it.
With Harvey steering the ship, I bet she gets an Oscar nom.
Oprah and Meryl are winning the Oscars. You can call it in June.
Will this be released in 3-D? Since Oprah is in it.
Viola IS getting The Oscar for Never Back Down...
I forgot to mention the wonderful performance of Clarence Williams III in this. The role is comparatively tiny but his character is enormously touching. The sequence in which this old man shows kindness and forgiveness to the young version of the protagonist is somewhat reminiscent of Les Miserables-you'll know what I mean when you see it.
Lynn, are you really trying to lord it over us, bragging that you get to see crapfests like W.E. and Les Miserables months before most of us never see them? You couldn't pay me enough.
Surely there are more dignified ways to make a living?
Oh, dear, R47. I hope you get some rest tonight. You clearly need it.
Oprah looks like a fat slug these days. She could barely fit in her seat the other night at THE TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL.
I fucking HATE movies like this...bloated, hamfisted OBVIOUS tear jerking morality play smug self important DRECK.
Shit like this, or that STOOOPID piece of shit with Halle Berry and Tom Hanks, or whatever fucking overblown bullshit with the trailer that features all these HUUUGE stars (usually turning their heads to the camera in a montage with swelling strings wringing every last bit of schmaltz out of the room) and that guy with the deep voice saying something pithy like "In a world where white folks run things, this stoic black guy shows all the shallow white people what real depth and meaning is, and makes all the white people realize how shitty they are...from the producers of other bloated horrible shit comes a story of redemption, renewal and REGURGITATED FUCKING SAME OLD SAME OLD FROM LAST FUCKING YEAR AND EVERY GODDAMN DRIVING MISS DAISY CORA CORA THE HELP somebody had to give Oprah her OSCAR CRAP movie that NO ONE wants to see because it's so FUCKING DEPRESSING and boring and EARNEST.
Lynn, so would you say Mariah Carey isn't very good in this movie? I'm shocked to hear that she gets raped in the movie. Do you see that scene?
From what I've seen in the trailer, The Butler looks extremely trite. JFK is portrayed in a heroic light while Richard Nixon is the devil incarnate.
This thread would be pathetically hilarious if it weren't so tragic.
Mariah Carey is only in the first five minutes or so. Her character gets dragged into a shack by Alex Pettyfer's character and raped. The rape apparently renders her mute. Her husband protests and he gets shot in the head. The son leaves the plantation and we never see her or even hear about her again. She had a far more significant role in Daniels' Precious. I'm sure she just did this cameo as a favor to him.
Oh my god, that rape scene with Mariah sounds horrible!
Ugh, I hope she at least did a decent job with a scene like that. Actors who don't pull off rape scenes well can just RUIN a traumatic scene like that
Sorry, Creshal, the rape scene occurs off-screen.
Damn, and I was going to replay that scene over and over, like Goldie Hawn replaying Meryl's death scene in "Death Becomes Her".
Sounds like a crappy OWN or Lifetime movie.
It's not crappy.
I was at the premiere tonight.
Oprah will be remembered at Oscar time.
And Lynn Stairmaster is right: the actor plays Charlie steals his scenes.
And although slavery was obviously a heinous system of persecution I just didn't care for Cecil equating plantations with concentration camps.
Slavery was completely horrible but please! people in concentration camps in the Holocaust saw their babies being thrown into the air, and used as target practice, they used the hair of the dead for stuffing for pillows, made soap from the fat of the skin of the bodies,etc. One of those who are in charge of the camps in World War 2 requested skin with tattoos on them because his wife collected them and made lamp shades out of them. A lady who they called the Bitch of Buchwald was a wife of one of the generals who ran a concentration camp. She was extremely ruthless to the point that she had fingers from dead bodies to be used as light switches.And she rode on her horse to see who looked in her direction so she could send that person to his or her death. she love to see people tortured.
The camps in Eastern Europe in the 90s the people were tortured with mind boggling ways.
Again, I am fully aware the slaves went through a lot, and I have read a lot on American slavery and it's truly awful,but there is no comparison to the concentration camps of World War 2 and many others. I'm getting so tired of movies which there is a constant message how rotten white people are. Oprah is a billionaire, Forrest Whittaker is a successful actor, we have the first black president in the White House, we have many African American congress men and women,and in the president's cabinet, and the list goes on and on. White people did play a big role making these people successful, and placed in power positions, good grief!
BTW, I think it is over the top Forrest Whittaker hair is done like Obama's when Forrest is playing someone who worked in the White House through the 50s to the 80s.
NO! I'm not a Repub! No I'm not a Frau.
I disagree re: Oprah, R59, but nice to see we agree re: the young man who plays Charlie. He really is exceptional in this.
so is Melissa Leo as Mamie Eisenhower in the movie or was she cut out?
and if so was Oprah scared Melissa might win another OSCAR?
i for one am only going to watch The Butler
for Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan
Went to a Bafta screening last week. Very good. Not perfect, but enjoyable. It'll be a best picture contender. Oprah was terrific. So was Forest Whitaker. Great ensemble cast and fun cameos for the presidents and wives. Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan. Genius.
I'd recommend it.
hey R63 was Melissa Leo as Mamie Eisenhower in the movie?
she would of had scenes with Robin Williams as Dwight Eisenhower
i looked up her IMDb page and she is no longer listed as having appeared in The Butler
[quote]And Lynn Stairmaster is right: the actor plays Charlie steals his scenes.
You're aware that's not a good thing, aren't you?
So how did Lynn like "August: Osage County"
I just can't believe that anyone would think this affected persona was witty, funny, or captivating in any way. You sound like a fucking idiot. The end.
so was Melissa Leo cut from the movie?
anyone who saw it know?
please. thank you.
Rave review in the New York Times.
Can't believe anybody gave Daniels money to make a movie after the debacle of "The Paperboy". I like campy/bad films, but this one was so poorly made I couldn't even get through it.
Though some of the blame could be put on the casting. Kidman dusts off her "To Die For" character 20 yeas later and adds a suthun accent. McConnaughey does the same character he always does. Efron, despite a gym body and a handsome face, is always oddly unsexy (risque' scenes are squirmy- you just want them to end).
I hope this movie tanks big time because there are nothing but complete assholes who are in this cast. besides, they said it is loosely based on this butler's story. Rent, Backstairs at the White House. It is a true story of a black maid who worked at the White House practically her whole life. Also, the cast is phenomenal and there are no agenda's behind this story. It is told like it was period. I plan to buy a copy of this miniseries.
Big Woo R71, NY Times is so PC that they don't even report what they really think about the film because it's about an African American and a large part of the cast are African American.
[quote]Melissa Leo (Mamie Eisenhower) has been cut from the film altogether.
That's got to be a plus. I can't even begin to imagine her in that role.
R6, thank you very much. Yours is one of the best posts I've read on DL, ANYwhere. Thanks for summarizing the film very well; I especially appreciate 'cause I won't be able to see (health;transportation; long story) until someday on video (I realize is quicker than I think! -yes, I'm old.)
I have perhaps a BIT of a problem off the bat with, "...Oprah...affair...Terence Howard..."(??!! does she look especially good in this film??)
And wow, I'M surprised to picture James Marsden as JFK??! (have to get "Hop" - which I actually liked - out of my mind, hee-hee!)
Okay - no one has mentioned that just maybe the prevailing mood/subconcious of the country/filmgoers is going to be ramped up a bit, seeing this film, by the Trayvon Martin killing/murdered getting off free? Anyone???
[quote]Ms. Winfrey, meanwhile, demonstrates that, in addition to being the most famous and powerful woman in the world, she is a fine character actor.)
P.S. that is how those of us in the film business say someone is fat....."character actor"
It just sounds like audience repellent.
True dat, r73. NYT wouldn't dare criticize it.
It seems that "The Butler" will win every Oscar award.
[quote]every Oscar award.
English is not r80's first language
I will look for it on my next flight.
Oprah's corset to win Best Visual Effects!!!!!
The Washington Post gives The Butler 2 stars, this doesn't look good.
The film critic for NPR's "Morning Edition" wasn't impressed by The Butler. Though he didn't say "Don't go," he got close to saying that.
I think it's tragic that Jimmy Carter was skipped over! But I do understand it in light of the terrible casting conflict that arose. I have it on good authority, Jimmy insisted Jeff Bridges play him, and then Rosalyn got very mean and insisted that she would play herself opposite Jeff Bridges, and then Jeff Bridges said he was busy playing with Ryan Reynolds and was unavailable.
At one point, Rosalyn threatened to divorce Jimmy, but they increased the dosage on her meds and she's doing fine. Jimmy, of course is still hurt and disappointed. He refused to comment when they found him at the airport heading out to Dafur to build houses. Without Rosalyn. There'll be more on this item later...
I was very underwhelmed. The script and direction are very choppy as the movie bumps along from big event to big event; yes, there are a couple of good moments -- I loved the crosscutting between a White House dinner and a Woolworth's protest -- but they are few and far between. Forest Whitaker is good, David Oyelowo is terrific as the rebellious son, but Oprah Winfrey is laughably bad -- more Razzie-worthy than Oscar-worthy. Though, as far as bad acting goes, she gets a run for her money with John Cusack's hilariously awful Richard Nixon.
R88, our opinions could hardly be more different. I enjoyed the movie in spite of myself. I really didn't want to see it, but my partner did... so I went.
I'm surprised how moving it was. I was bawling at the end. And Oprah is really good -- much better than in Color Purple. And I hated the crosscutting between the state dinner and the lunch counter -- just too heavy handed. My favorite scenes were the intimate family stuff -- black middle class social life. The parties, the food, the music. They were authentic and fresh. All the black actors are great. The white actors... eh... not so much. Jane Fonda is perfect. Vanessa Redgrave delivers. But the rest are pretty bad, some laughably so. There's a young black actor named Elijah Kelley who plays the younger son. He's amazing. Just a couple scenes, but he really is good and very memorable.
It's a good history lesson too. Most of it I knew from Garrow's MLKing autobiography, but it's always good to be reminded.
I still remember those two main scenes in which Elijah Kelley appears. Damn, he's talented. You really do find yourself sitting up and thinking "Who the hell is he?" Talk about a scene-stealer.
I root for Lee Daniels. How many gays and/or blacks ever earn a platform as he has?
But, his movies are often terrible, often after the fact. He tackles such high minded issues and topics that the movies sometimes initially seem good or "important" but after a while (sometimes months down the road), you realize how much the movie sucked. Also, there's usually some genuinely great performances (often among laughably bad performances) which detracts from how bad the movie is.
Hated this movie with a passion.
The only thing I liked was the torture of Mariah Carey in the first 5 minutes. Someone should do that to her in real life and get her off her high horse. And she gets third billing. Give me a break.
If a white director made this movie, Spike Lee would have decried the glossing over of black history for the highlights that is by now just buzzwords.
Four Historians Take On 'The Butler's' Racist Depiction of Reagan
By: Courtney Coren
Four Ronald Reagan historians have slammed the portrayal of former President Reagan in the movie "The Butler," saying that the 40th president's "attitudes toward race" as shown in the movie are inaccurate.
They begin the article, "What 'The Butler' gets wrong about Ronald Reagan and race," published in The Washington Post, by recounting instances in Reagan's life when he decried racism and took a stand for the African-American community.
While serving as president of the Screen Actors Guild, for example, "Ronald Reagan called upon the entertainment industry to provide greater employment for black actors." That position was controversial at the time.
When giving his infamous "evil empire" speech in March 1983 against the Soviet Union, Reagan also attacked the "the resurgence of some hate groups preaching bigotry and prejudice" in America.
These examples came after the historians recount the time when young Reagan brought two African American football teammates home from college to spend the night with his family.
That is hardly the "sense" of Reagan that one gets from the Lee Daniels film the historians explain.
The four historians, who have more than a dozen Reagan biographies between them, are Stephen F. Hayward, whose books include "The Age of Reagan"; Paul Kengor, author of 2007's "The Crusader"; Craig Shirley, who wrote last year's "Rendezvous With Destiny" and the 2005 book "Reagan's Revolution"; and Kiron K. Skinner who has compiled several books on Reagan's life including "Reagan's Path to Victory."
They say they are concerned "by the movie's portrayal of Reagan's attitudes toward race."
"We are especially concerned because many Americans readily accept Hollywood depictions of history as factual," they add.
"The Butler" is loosely based on the life of Eugene Allen, an African American who worked as a butler in the White House under eight presidents and resigned during Reagan's tenure. Allen's character is named Cecil Gaines in the movie.
The quartet of historians are mainly concerned about two instances they say are inaccurately portrayed in the movie, which has topped the box office ratings for the past two weeks.
The first is when Gaines, played by Forest Whitaker, is given a personal invitation to attend a state dinner, but he is seen feeling very uncomfortable because "he feels he's being used as a political tool, a prop, a token African American."
It is not long after this that he resigns from his position at the White House because of "supposed humiliation" at the event.
However, the Religion News Service said Allen "was especially fond of the Reagans," and a fellow member of Allen's church said that the butler "often talked about how nice they were to him." The historians point out while it is true that Allen left his position during the Reagan presidency, but it was on good terms and "he received a 'sweet note' from the president and a hug from the first lady."
The other instance takes place when Reagan promises to "veto any sanctions against South Africa." The Republican congresswoman meeting with him pleads with him over the matter saying that it is right thing to do and congressional Republicans are in agreement. The supposed reason for Reagan's refusal to support sanctions against the racist government is that he is "apparently unsympathetic to black suffering."
"While accurate in depicting Reagan's opposition to sanctions against South Africa, 'The Butler' does not explain why he opposed them," the historians write. "Reagan saw sanctions as harmful to the poorest of South Africans: millions of blacks living in dire poverty. He also feared that the apartheid regime could be replaced by a Marxist government allied with the Soviet Union and Cuba and that communism would spread throughout the continent.
"South African blacks were denied rights under apartheid
With all these year end lists and critics group, The Butler seems to get lost in the shuffle. Oprah's Oscar chances are falling away to a young black woman more talented than her.
I wouldn't count O down for the count just yet. Plus she (and the movie) have Harvey behind her.
Hoping that Oprah is finished.
Guess we'll get some idea of what might happen at the SAG awards.
By rights Lupita should have a straight shot at a nomination and eventual win, but 12 Years a Slave seems to be losing a bit of steam. The recent critics awards overlooked it. I think everything is a toss up at this point.
I think 12 years a Slave was overpraised because The Butler made it look better than it actually is. I wasn't impressed with Fruitvale Station or Blue is the Warmest Color either...
Butler is completely out of the running. Lynn Faildisaster flops again.
No, it's not, R101.
SAG nominations are tomorrow, right? And Golden Globe nominations Thursday? The Butler will definitely score nominations this week from both.
And it will probably win the SAG Award for Best Cast of a Motion Picture.
I really liked it. IMO, it's simply more than the sum of it's parts. For some reason it works. The president characters are fairly bad. The eldest son's story is pretty ridiculous in terms of being conveniently the exact opposite of the father's situation - proud civil rights activist vs. demure Butler hardly questions the establishment.
But, again, it works. Good film. Really wondering if it will get Oscars. I think it's great, but not sure it's Oscar-caliber when you break it down. But, should you break it down, or just take it as a whole?
The only SAG nomination it will get will be for Oprah, and she won't win. The Best Ensemble award will go to American Huistle, not 12 Years a Slave.
The Golden Globes may be nicer to the Butler since they have 10 lead acting and Pictures nominees.
No r102. Not happening anywhere other than your fantasy world. The Butler is forgotten.
It was re-released this past Friday in a few theaters, including two in Manhattan and several in the boroughs and suburbs.
I'm glad they did that, because I got to see it for myself and think it was very good -- not the best picture of the year but in the top ten.
I also liked the wide scope of the movie -- from the 1920's to the 1980's and I thought the message was delivered with appropriate weight but didn't sledgehammer it over our heads.
We have seen massive changes in this nation over the decades of the 20th century and the movie ably portrayed them.
R105, the SAG Award is for Best Cast of a Motion Picture, not Ensemble. And I'll be very surprised if The Butler's wonderful, diverse cast isn't nominated tomorrow.
Told ya so. And it will probably win the SAG Award for Outstanding Cast, too. Whitaker doesn't have a chance.
Oprah has to get nominated, I'm betting big bucks on it!
She did, R110, but she won't win. The cast has an excellent chance of winning. It will be interesting to see how many of them will show up at the awards. Will Jane Fonda? She only has one line in the movie.
"All my life I had to fight. I had to fight my daddy. I had to fight my uncles. I had to fight my brothers. A girl child ain't safe in a family of men, but I ain't never thought I'd have to fight in my own house!"
The snub of Oprah is perfectly appropriate. She gives a good performance in The Butler but hardly an outstanding one.
And I continue to think her performance in The Color Purple was downright bad. Sofia's "rise from the dead" scene at the dinner table is wince-inducing.
Finally watched this via a SAG-AFTRA DVD screener. I will definitely be voting for this for Best Cast of a Motion Picture. I was pleasantly surprised by Winfrey-I thought she was better than just good this time and I suspect it's to do with the editing. In the DVD extras Daniels tells Winfrey to stop moving her shoulders in a scene, to remain completely motionless. So I believe her "improved" performance from test screening to final release is primarily a result of good direction and editing.
I remember making a comment in the form we filled out at the test screening back in April regarding Howard, the adulterous neighbor played by Terence Howard. In one scene there was a mention of a local guy who'd been shot to death after being caught in bed with someone's wife. I'd assumed it was Howard but then he turned up for at least one more scene afterward. In the finished film it IS Howard who ended up being shot to death. I somehow doubt I was the only one to bring up the confusion I felt.
I finally saw this tonight, and I wasn't terribly impressed. I was relieved to learn that the main character was only very loosely based on a real White House butler (by a different name), because there was just way too much credibility-straining going on. His oldest son just happens to be in virtually EVERY situation important to African-American history during the 1960s (including being in Martin Luther King's Memphis motel room when he was killed, and having just seen Malcolm X speak before he was killed)? Also, it was a mistake using well-known actors to play the Presidents.
As for Oprah, the only reason people talked about the possibility of her getting an Oscar nomination was name recognition. If the role had been played exactly the same way by an unknown actor, there's no way there would be awards talk. The character as written seemed to be supposed to be a force of nature, but Oprah played her as fairly mousy. I saw that as a lack of confidence in her acting. She wasn't nearly big enough.
"Oh my God. I'm back. I'm home. All the time, it was... We finally really did it ... You Maniacs! You blew it up! Ah, damn you! God damn you all to hell!"
We are switching to the new platform for The DataLounge this weekend. All of our mobile users have been using it for over a week and all first time users have been using it for about a month - which adds up to well over one million users. So we're ready to end this phase of the testing and move everybody to the new site. (more)
And yes, we've changed the look and some of how it operates.
Yes, we know you just *hate* it in well in advance.
Yes, we know we suck.
Yes, we are the biggest suckers that ever sucked.
But it was time for a change and with the huge shift to mobile it was long overdue. We've taken this opportunity not only to update the look but also make major changes under the hood (or "bonnet" if you're either British or pretentious or both). And we have to prepare for 2016 - a presidential election year where we can normally expect to see a 60% jump in traffic (yes, we've seen 5 presidential elections so far…Christ we're old).
The site has a bunch - nay, plethora - of new features which will make the site more usable: better search, the ability to ignore posters and threads, see link previews, to pick up a thread where you left off, spam and malware filtering and more.
If you want you can go explore and see for yourself, Click here.
And while running the tests we've noticed two interesting reactions to the new system - people are spending more time on the site and more people that come stay around longer and look at more stuff. Both good things. Yay!
Possibly we've not slain all the dragons and there will be issues that come up during the switchover. There's a help button in the lower right hand corner of the page which you can use to send us bug reports.
Please include as much information about the hardware (PC, Mac, Tablet, Phone etc), operating system (Windows, Mac OS, Android, iOS etc) and browser (Chrome, Safari, Opera, Internet Explorer etc) that you are using as possible to help us replicate and fix the problem.
Please note that complaints about colors, fonts, icons and the like are not "bugs" - they are design choices that we've made and we expect one or two cases of world-class bitching. But they won't actually cause headaches, scurvy, heart attacks, Restless Leg Syndrome, Morgellon's Disease or the vapors (but have your smelling salts at hand just in case).
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