Eccentricities of Wild Salt (Weekly Links)

Eccentricities of a Blond-Hair Spy

Reviews I wrote for the Herald this week.

Eccentricities of a Blond-Hair Girl (and Cropsey). “Utterly assured, soberly whimsical.”

Salt. “Angelina Jolie seems so unreal anyway, we can accept her in this indestructible role.”

Wild Grass. “An aura of frizzy blood-red hair.”

Agora. “Does not bode well for the rationalists.”

Ramona and Beezus. “Would not be entirely out of place in an episode of ‘Leave It to Beaver.'”

And on KUOW’s “Weekday,” I talk with Steve Scher about how what we know of actors’ (and directors’) offscreen lives affects our ability to watch their movies; listen here. The film bit kicks in at the 15-minute mark.

And new issues of Rotten (and the trade paperback of the first six issues) are about to hit the streets. The new stuff just got a rave from the Ain’t It Cool News crew, here.

Movie Diary 7/21/2010

Salt (Philip Noyce, 2010). Angelina Jolie beating blond chase ledge freeway trucks bomb chase brunette Russians guns punch shoot chase tanker grenades nukes spidervenom chase helicopter Potomac snow Angelina Jolie. (full review 7/23)

Eccentricities of a Blond-Hair Girl (Manoel de Oliveira, 2009). The director’s 101 years old, I think he can get away with making a 60-minute film. And this one is definitive from the first moment to the last, a very droll little offering that nods more than once in the direction of Luis Buñuel. (full review 7/23)

Bell Book and Candle (Richard Quine, 1958). Aside from its general appeal, this has tasty design artifacts from the late Eisenhower era, plus Kim Novak winning the day by underplaying next to the fairly broad clowning by James Stewart, Jack Lemmon, Elsa Lanchester, and Ernie Kovacs. It’s about witches.