JACK OF ALL TRADES: Jack O’Connell, ’71 and Unbroken


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Warning: SPOILERS
starred upI think I’m glad I wasn’t at Jack O’Connell’s home for the holidays this season.
What an amazing year he’s had. He first became well known in the U.S. for his stirring and starring role as the juvenile who is sent to an adult correctional facility in the prison drama Starred Up.
He followed this with the thriller ’71, about a British soldier who gets left behind by his troupe after a riot in Belfast during the Troubles and has to make his way back to safety.
And now he stars in Unbroken, the based on the true story of Louis Zamperini biopic, an Olympic medalist who was imprisoned in a Japanese POW camp during WWII and was treated particularly cruelly by the commanding officer.
It’s an astonishing series of performances to have so close together. Continue reading

SHE DID IT FOR SOME GUY…SOME GUY: Angelina Jolie and Maleficent


Ever wonder what a reader for a contest or agency thinks of your screenplay? Check out my new e-book published on Amazon: Rantings and Ravings of a Screenplay Reader, including my series of essays, What I Learned Reading for Contests This Year, and my film reviews of 2013. Only $2.99. http://ow.ly/xN31r
maleficentIn one episode of Daria, the MTV animated series about a loner misfit at a new high school, the title character goes out with her best friend’s brother (someone she has a crush on) to buy her friend a birthday present, and ends up getting her belly button pierced. All because of said crush on said brother.
When she shows her friends, they all tell her it’s neat, as long as she didn’t do it for some guy. At first she doth protest too much, but then realizes, very embarrassed and ashamed, that she did indeed do it for some guy. SOME GUY.
I thought of that episode while watching Maleficent, the new post modern cinematic take with an attempt at modern sensibilities on the old Charles Perrault fairy tale, Sleeping Beauty. Continue reading