Posts Tagged ‘Juno Temple’

blackmassheader2It has been a while since the last time I did a Based On A Truesday Story (a play on the words Tuesday and True Story), but I had to bring it back for a special movie. This past Friday, Black Mass, the film about one of South Boston’s most notorious gangsters in James “Whitey” Bulger was released into theaters. The film stars Johnny Depp (Donnie Brasco) stars as the notorious gangster himself as it looks at how Whitey got the push he needed in the game thanks to corrupt FBI agent John Connolly (Joel Edgerton).  It takes you deep into South Boston as Bulger goes on a rampage as he becomes one of the most powerful gangsters and second on the list of the FBI’s most wanted men behind Osama Bin Laden. The film is based on the book of the same name by former Boston Globe writers Dick Lehr and Gerard O’Neill and it looks at what Kevin Weeks, Steve Flemmi, and John Martorano had to say about Bulger. The film also stars Dakota Johnson (50 Shades Of Grey) as Lindsey Cyr, Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game) as Billy Bulger, Kevin Bacon (Footloose) as Charles McGuire, Peter Sarsgaard (Jarhead) as Brian Halloran, Rory Cochrane (Dazed And Confused) as Steve Flemmi, David Harbour (The Equalizer) as John Morris, Adam Scott (Step Brothers) as FBI Agent Robert Fitzpatrick, Corey Stroll (This Is Where I Leave You) as Fred Wyshak, Julianne Nicholson (August: Osage County) as Marianne Connolly, W. Earl Brown (Scream) as John Martorano, Jesse Plemons (Observe And Report) as Kevin Weeks, Juno Temple (Killer Joe) as Deborah Hussey, and the film was directed by Scott Cooper (Out Of The Furnace).

black massAs with every film that is based on a true story, there are always those who doubt how true each event is and whether or not Hollywood expressed their creative liberty with some of the film. Kevin Weeks, one of the men depicted in the film recently spoke out on the film calling it fiction. He commented on Johnny Depp’s performance of Bulger and how it was written saying, “The only resemblance to Whitey’s character was the hairline. The funny thing is, Whitey’s look didn’t really change at all, just his clothes. It’s like we were stuck in a time warp. And the mannerisms—the way that Whitey talked to us—he never swore at us. In all the years I was with that man, he never swore at me once.” He later commented on a scene in the film that was depicted in Miami when a deal was being made to take out an important figure. Weeks says, “That never happened. In fact, I didn’t know about Roger Wheeler’s death until the Callahan murder. So just by having me be there giving Halloran the money, they have involved me in a conspiracy to kill Roger Wheeler. I’ve been libeled. I wasn’t involved in that at all, so I have a big problem with that. I just don’t know where they get the right to put events in there that did not happen.” There is also a very cool article from Time Magazine that describes what was fact or fiction about some important events in the film. In the film, they claim that the violence increased once Bulger’s son died. While it’s true that his son did die, they claim that he had ordered several hits before then with Weeks telling The Daily Beast, “Whitey was violent long before his son’s death.” Nevertheless, I thought Johnny Depp’s performance was masterful and that he was the best part of the film. I do feel that they made Flemmi and Weeks minor characters in the film than what they probably were in real life. The film itself was good, but Edgerton and Depp absolutely steal the show. One of my favorite elements of the film was the cinematography because they take some amazing shots of the city of Boston and Southie. Overall, my final grade for the film is a B=+

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Dirty GirlI am starting to figure out that I am a huge fan of Juno Temple and her work whether it be Killer Joe, Horns, Maleficent, or in the film that I chose for today’s Filmfest Friday flick. The film I chose for today is 2010’s Dirty Girl which pins Juno Temple as the overly sexual, fatherless, and lost girl Danielle. Danielle is lost because she is doing all the wrong things that end up finding her being sent down to a special classroom with the “special kids” or as it would be called Study Skills in some states.There she is forced to partner with Clarke (Jeremy Dozier) who is a boy just screaming to come out of the closet, but is scared to be himself for fear of what his father may do. With the help of Clarke, Danielle finally discovers who her real father is and the two will set out on a road trip to California so that Danielle can reunite with her father. Hopefully on the trip, Clarke can find what he is looking for as well because he is also on a personal journey. The film also stars Milla Jovovich (Dazed And Confused) as Danielle’s mother Sue Ann, Mary Steenburgen (What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?) as Clarke’s mother Peggy, Dwight Yoakam (Sling Blade) as Clarke’s father Joseph, Brent Briscoe (The Dark Knight Rises) as Officer Perry, William H. Macy (Boogie Nights) as Ray, Nicholas D’Agosto (Fired Up) as Joel, Tim McGraw (The Blind Side) as Danny, and the film was directed by Abe Sylvia (Nurse Jackie). 

dirty girl 2When watching this film, you have to remember what times must have been like in Norman, Oklahoma circa 1987 and it all makes sense that someone would treat Clarke the way his father treats him. Fathers must have believed that it was a mental disease that could be cured and hence is the reason our society was so backwards for such a long time. Even though Danielle is on a journey to find her father, she is also on a journey to self discovery because Clarke is the most enlightened one of the duo. Clarke is the one that is most accepting of people while Danielle is much like her society, but she is willing to accept him because she feels they are misfits. Throughout this whole journey, Danielle wakes up and grows up right before your eyes, but she couldn’t have done it without Clarke as he is the agent of change much like John Candy’s character in Planes, Trains, and Automobiles is to Steve Martin’s character hence the reason it’s a coming of age story. This is an amazing film that every one should check out because it’s well written and well acted and it features a great cast as well. The film debuted back in September of 2010 at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) and it’s available to watch on Netflix as we speak. I am going to give the film an A for a final grade because it was enjoyable to watch.

hornsI wanted to save this film for Eddie’s 31 Days Of Halloween 2015, but then again I saw a perfect opportunity to review a great independent film for Filmfest Fridays. All of us are used to seeing Daniel Radcliffe as the wizard Harry Potter, but in Horns he plays a different character. Radcliffe plays Ig Perish, a kid who seems to have it all Seattle until his beautiful girlfriend and love of his life Merrin (Juno Temple) is murdered. Everyone in the town believes that Ig committed the murder, but he is trying to prove his innocence. One day after saying something in frustration, Ig starts to grow horns on his head and everyone in the town is acting weird around him as they start confessing how they really feel to him. Will Ig find out the truth behind Merrin’s murder or will the towns people be right about him? The film also stars Max Minghella (The Internship) as Lee, Joe Anderson (The Crazies) as Terry Perish, Kelli Garner (Lars And The Real Girl) as Glenna, James Remar (Pineapple Express) as Derrick Perish, Kathleen Quinlan (Apollo 13) as Lydia Perish, David Morse (The Hurt Locker) as Dale, Heather Graham (Boogie Nights) as Veronica, and the film was directed by Alexandre Aja (High Tension).

IGOne of the things you’ll notice about the film is the constant imagery and symbolism that is thrown in your face from the constant sightings of a snake  which appear everywhere that Ig appears. It’s the battle between good and evil in the film and Ig is the catalyst as people confess their deepest desires to him or at least the ones with bad intentions. This is definitely one of Daniel Radcliffe’s best performances and it proves that he can act beyond Harry Potter and I have to say that everyone in the film is masterful as well. As always, I truly enjoyed Juno Temple’s performance in this film and just about everything she is in these days. I love the contrast in styles in this film where the film gets pretty dark at times, but then it can switch and give you some humor and at other times it feels like a horror film. That is all because of excellent writing from the book it was adapted from to the pages of the script. I love the cinematography as well because they get some really amazing shots of Washington state and where IG lives besides capturing all the dark imagery. Overall, it was an excellent film in my opinion and one that I can watch time and time again. It’s available to watch on Netflix and any other VOD service. I am giving the film an A for a final grade.