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Oct 4th
02:01 pm
Woodstock Film Festival 09 - twitters, pics, reviews  
I'm going to go ahead and wrap up as much of the Woodstock Film Festival coverage that's out there now and I'll post ccmskatechick's review/details as soon as I can :)

Times Herald Record Coverage

A couple of pics from the Maverick Award Ceremony, full gallery





The Inside Scoop on finding Orson Welles

by Deborah Medenbach

Maverick Award winner Richard Linklater immediately optioned Robert Kaplow’s “Me and Orson Welles” book with his own money, already envisioning the kind of film it could turn out to be.

“But I wasn’t going to make it unless I could find a perfect Orson Welles,” Linklater said. Fate has a way of bringing things to our doorstep and it wasn’t long before word got to him about a one man show called “Rosebud” showing for a short run in a 50-seat theater in New York. The actor, Christian McKay, had all the nuances of Welles’ persona down pat.

“We flew him to LA for screen tests in traditional 1930s clothing,” producer John Sloss said. Afterward, McKay said “I guess you’ll be getting a big star for this role.”

“I put my arm around his shoulders very Cecile B. DeMille and said ‘We could find a big star, or we could make a big star.’ I think I scared the wits out of him,” Sloss said.

McKay turns in a performance Welles himself would be proud of.

“Me and Orson Wells” is based on the early life of actor Arthur Anderson of New York, who performed with Welles in a 1937 production of Ceasar. Anderson and Norman Lloyd are the only members of the original theater company still living.

Did the young Anderson continue with his theater career after his encounter with Welles and subsequent drubbing by his mentor?

Yes. He became the voice of the Lucky Charms Leprechaun. Magically delicious.

source


recordonline.com review:





A few other reviews/twitters



From imdb maow boards:





Keither @ fredflare.com
Note: start with the left column...



source




These two are actually from a UK screening I believe, but I hadn't posted them yet...



imdb user-submitted review: motta80-2

Orson Welles is alive and well and residing in the body of British actor Christian McKay! McKay is simply stunning here as Welles - the look, the eye-brow, the mannerisms, the bounce, the voice - never have i seen Welles, as a character, better done. Many have tried few have succeeded (although i have a soft spot for Vincent D'Onofrio's Welles-cameo in Ed Wood.

The same can be said in general for Richard Linklater's film in terms of featuring Welles and using the whole "putting on a show" theatrical device. I didn't like Oliver Parker's Fade To Black with Danny Huston hamming Welles. RKO 281 was solid and Tim Robbins' Cradle Will Rock was a noble, if unsatisfyingly drear effort. Aided by McKay's towering achievement, a (mostly) superb supporting cast and a deft lightness Linklater has delivered his best film in years.

To my mind he can be hit (Dazed & Confused, Before Sunrise) and miss (A Scanner Darkly, Fast Food Nation), but this is firmly in the hit category.

Other non-Welles films, such as Kenneth Branagh's In The Bleak Mid-Winter, have failed in their attempts to have fun at "putting on a show" format because they are too in love with moments that have that "you just had to be there" element. Christopher Guest made a go of it in Waiting For Guffman, but then he was mocking the pretensions so many others embrace as part of the scene. Somehow McKay's (as Welles) enormous personality and Linklater's breezy "makes it look so easy" style make you feel like you are there in Me & Orson Welles and it works to great effect - tantalising the viewer with moments and flashes of the play to come without giving it to you until the right time. The 'Me' of the title really becomes the viewer. You are swept along me both filmmaker and Orson (and it really does feel like Orson. After a few moments i never doubted the Linklater had somehow resurrected Welles and saddled him with Zac Efron!) And this brings me the film's one real problem (and surely a marketing nightmare for the distributors!) Now i'm no Efron hater, i haven't seen any of the HSM movies, but he was fine in both Hairspray and 17 Again but here he has to register in a fantastic ensemble of actors and he simply doesn't. Admittedly he is hamstrung a little by the role. Since the story and Linklater's direction make the viewer feel like 'Me' observing Welles as he creates his legendary production of Julius Caesar and the Mercury theatre company it is easy to kind of forget about Efron's Richard, or at least to dismiss him as Welles so often does. He just makes no impression at all. He's not bad he's just not really significant.

This leads to the inevitable problem that as we reach the films final act, once the play is done and Welles is off screen you feel like the movie is over. You've seen everything there is to see here, it is time to move along. But no, because Efron's story is unresolved so we get another 10 minutes of him and his ending. But you simply don't care. Once McKay/Welles had gone off with his supporting cast the movie was over, it just didn't know it! Amongst the supporting cast Claire Danes continues in display as easy charm, effortlessly likable and curiously beautiful in her quirky angular way. Zoe Kazan (last seen in Revolutionary Road) is a delight as the underused other woman in Efron's life (although if she'd been used more it would have meant more Efron, less Welles so maybe that's a blessing in disguise). James Tupper is excellent as Joseph Cotten, a great match for McKay's Welles. If they ever (God forbid) remake The Third Man they have the cast! Ben Chaplin is also marvellous as George Couloris. I'm constantly impressed by Chaplin and have no idea why he isn't a bigger name. Kelly Reilly doesn't have much to do but look gorgeous, which, naturally, she does with ease. Eddie Marsan seems miscast as John Houseman. I like Marsan but he didn't fit the bill for me here.

Ultimately this is McKay's show. He gives an electrifying performance at the center of a movie that while it is about Welles efforts to put on Julius Caesar is a charming, funny and swift-paced joy; but unfortunately it also has to make space for Zac Efron and his own storyline and there-in lie the flaws.

How you market this i don't know! I can't imagine Efron fans getting excited about a film set in the 1930s about the creation of an historic theatrical production staged by a man who's been dead for 25 years! And on the flipside i nearly didn't see it because i dismissed it, on first awareness, as a Zac Efron movie and so not for me. Only on a second invitation did i notice it was directed by Linklater (always interesting, if not always successful) which charged my want to see it.

Ultimately though if you want to see it because you're an Efron fan, well go see it because your guy's in it and because you'll get to see something a bit different from what you're used it. And maybe you'll like it. If you're not an Efron fan, never fear, you can all but forget he's there and just enjoy Linklater at his breezy best and the best performance of Welles on screen since the great man departed this earth (and took possession of McKay!)

source

ETA (10/5 AM): One more twitter from WFF:

 
 
Mood: busybusy
16 16 comments Comment
 
 
zaccy23zaccy23 on October 4th, 2009 08:42 pm (UTC)
Way harsh motta80-2:(

But still so excited to hear all the other positive reviews. To hear that Linklater optioned this movie with his own money and believed in Zac to pull off this role is just so wow!!
bettybaby63bettybaby63 on October 4th, 2009 09:20 pm (UTC)
IA, ouch regarding everything written about zac.....

i'm believing that his opinion will be in the minority at least.

It's Audrey not Aubreyaudrey_za on October 4th, 2009 09:44 pm (UTC)
I didn't see a problem with the IMDB/motta80-2 review, and it was because of this sentence; " He's not bad he's just not really significant." Fair enough. I didn't see a blatant (unmerited) 'attack'/backhanded compliments toward Zac's inovlvement. He/she seemed to be stating that McKay's talent and the Orson Welles story- which was thoroughly enjoyed, were 'interrupted' to finish out Richard/Zac's story-line. I can understand as a non-Zac Efron fan how one may prefer more screen time dedicated to their performer of choice.

That, and I wonder myself how this film is going to be marketed once the promo tour, however short/long it may be, really gets going.

The little bit about Anderson/the voice of the Lucky Charms Leprechaun was a fun random fact of the day!
It's Audrey not Aubreyaudrey_za on October 4th, 2009 10:03 pm (UTC)
*involvement
bettybaby63bettybaby63 on October 4th, 2009 10:05 pm (UTC)
idk, to me the tone was very critical to say

"He just makes no impression at all. He's not bad he's just not really significant...Ultimately this is McKay's show. He gives an electrifying performance at the center of a movie that while it is about Welles efforts to put on Julius Caesar is a charming, funny and swift-paced joy; but unfortunately it also has to make space for Zac Efron and his own storyline and there-in lie the flaws....And on the flipside i nearly didn't see it because i dismissed it, on first awareness, as a Zac Efron movie and so not for me.If you're not an Efron fan, never fear, you can all but forget he's there and just enjoy Linklater at his breezy best and the best performance of Welles on screen since the great man departed this earth (and took possession of McKay!)"


i mean he's basically saying the role is irrelevant, and would have been better off without it/him.

but maybe that's just me feeling protective LOL
It's Audrey not Aubreyaudrey_za on October 4th, 2009 10:21 pm (UTC)
But they did not say the role was irrelevant. They said it's not signifigant, which I took to mean- this movie goer did not walk away w/a memorable impression left by Zac's performance.

Believe me, I'm well aware my views will most likely be bias- since I like Zac too, but I looked at this as merely one review that was neither glowing nor bad. I noticed they did not take to name-calling/personal attacks to get their point across that they simply were not affected by his portrayal, which seemed like a fair outlook, to me.

When so often we have seen the snide comments and (unfair) comparsions to other actors, it was a change of pace to see one articulate why they didn't like Zac in a role without those usual claws at the ready.
bettybaby63bettybaby63 on October 4th, 2009 10:41 pm (UTC)
yes its only one review and i don't even know how significant it is considering the source. and you make a very valid point about the fact that he doesn't resort to bashing or name calling.....

but i only want good reviews LOL

and truth be told, i'm really starting to get excited about potential oscar buzz!
It's Audrey not Aubrey: Cherry blossomsaudrey_za on October 4th, 2009 10:55 pm (UTC)
I won't be remembering this review when I'm in theaters next month watching MAOW, haha. :)

I want to hear what Zac has to say about the film! I'm not expecting the kind of promo we got for "17 Again" but I hope there's a few shows he might be a guest on (*coughConancoughcough*).

The early Oscar buzz is just amazing, and SO exciting!
bettybaby63bettybaby63 on October 4th, 2009 11:14 pm (UTC)
LOL yea, this review (or any others i don't like :P) won't be lingering while i'm watching either !!!!!!

the promo will be interesting i think. i would imagine that given its an independent film along with a limited release, it might not get much promo at all?????

and i just maybe as excited for this year's oscars as i was for last years ;)
jessica3311: Zeo kingsjessica3311 on October 5th, 2009 12:01 am (UTC)
Thanks for all the info C! I like that James Tupper got 2 mentions :) I <3 him! :) Also that Zoey got a mention too. Another one that worked with Leo & Zac *pouts* LOL
boy, why are you crying?ashe_frost on October 5th, 2009 12:19 am (UTC)
Wow, you really can't review film if you have a biased against genres and actors. (Like people who don't like indie film who review inner-conflict indie film and get upset because there's no ending. IT'S NOT SUPPOSED TO HAVE AN ENDING! THE ENTIRE POINT IS THAT THERE IS NO ENDING!)

Anyway. I'm glad it's getting good reviews and I'm so pleased for Zac and all involved that it's doing well. And for the rest of the cast and crew. They all seem to be really dedicated and to really believe in this film. I can't wait to see it.

boy, why are you crying?ashe_frost on October 5th, 2009 12:20 am (UTC)
biased = bias
.
IceGoddess: why so serious dirty little secretccmskatechick on October 5th, 2009 01:24 am (UTC)
Hey guys - just made it back from upstate New York :) Finally home and was able to login at a real keyboard for the first time since Friday morning.

I'm hopeful to get something banged out tonight, if not definitely by tomorrow morning (including pictures - unfortunately none of the pictures I tried to sneak during the actual movie came out) and I need to flip through the official program from the festival and take some shots of the MAOW parts in there.

You probably all saw my initial reactions on twitter. But in all honesty, I had somewhat high expectations on this movie and I was blown out of the water. More to come (with full detail) shortly :D
hunny miss (aka lets fead him to the gators)ehs_wildcats on October 5th, 2009 01:34 am (UTC)
sweet :)
Troll St. Trollglamour_addict on October 5th, 2009 01:54 am (UTC)
awwesome. looking forward to it.
bettybaby63bettybaby63 on October 5th, 2009 03:29 am (UTC)
yay!

your earlier comments certainly have me excited. can't wait to hear all about it! glad you had fun.