Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Oscars 06: Strathairn, a dry, full vintage

Suddenly, we all know who David Strathairn is, or at least what he looks like, that he's a living person, even though we're not sure how to pronounce his name (it's stra-THAY-urn). He's of the John Sayles school, a 25-year vet of movies, has never sought the spotlight, an actor's actor, etcetera, and now he's up for an Oscar for his performance as Ed Murrow in Good Night, and Good Luck. It's a great turn galvanized in one great moment, when Murrow finishes a fluff interview with Liberace. The studio camera cuts away from Murrow, and the fleeting, stifled look of disgust Strathairn evinces is an instant summary of everything about the character -- how he's frustrated at the dumb things a respectable news show must do to retain its viewership, and how the people in charge perpetuate it. Let's turn now to Limbo, a Sayles film released in '99 starring Strathairn and every marquee manager's nightmare, Mary Elizabeth Mastrontonio. This is a great overlooked movie, a wrought, beautifully photographed parable set in the remoteness of Alaska. This is vintage Strathairn -- distant, troubled, vulnerable and mysterious about it all.


is that so wrong? said...

David Strathairn was the dad that saves the day in The River Wild (a guilty pleasure of mine) opposite Meryl Streep. All that turmoil, all that whitewater.... how could we forget that?

J.J. said...

I almost mentioned The River Wild instead of Limbo. D-Strath is at his finicky, awkward best in class-five rapids. Oh, and let's not forget Sneakers, in which he plays the token blind guy who must drive a van during the climax.

Anonymous said...

If you would help me get this news out I would appreciate it, just trying to save an unsuspecting filmmaker some pain, Thanks, Luis



ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA – The director of Rockets Redglare!, a Steve Buscemi produced documentary which screened at Sundance in 2003 featuring Mr. Buscemi, Willem Dafoe, Jim Jarmusch and Matt Dillon, announced today he has filed a $1.75 million lawsuit in Federal Court against the film’s primary distributor.

Luis Fernandez de la Reguera charges that Michael Broder DBA Small Planet Pictures and Undecided Films, based in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, is in breach of contract, failed to pay advance fees and royalties, distributed the film illegally outside of North America, and did not honor marketing commitments. Entertainment lawyer J. Christopher Robbins is handling this case.

In a two-count federal lawsuit, the film’s owners allege that Small Planet Pictures,Undecided Films and its owner, Michael Broder, “obtained gains, profits, and advantages as a result of his wrongful acts.” They seek a court order preventing further unlawful distribution of the film, dissolution of the contract, and damages.

For more information contact:
Catherine Timilty, Esq.
(866) 862-6878

J.J. said...

I'm not sure how this relates to Mr. Strathairn.

Write Or said...

Was he in Newsies?