Saturday, February 28, 2015

From Screen to Stage


Following is a list of Out Movie Guide films that have been adapted for the stage in one form or another, in some cases more than once:


Musicals:

Plays:

Operas:

The compilation of this list is ongoing. Applicable future Out Movie Guide entries will be added when they are posted.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Carrington



1995 British/French Feature

Cast: Emma Thompson, Jonathan Pryce, Steven Waddington, Samuel West, Rufus Sewell, Penelope Wilton, Janet McTeer, Jeremy Northam and Alex Kingston
Writer/Director: Christopher Hampton, based on Lytton Strachey: A Critical Biography by Michael Holroyd

Synopsis:
Talented painter Dora Carrington forges a deep, complex bond with shy writer Lytton Strachey against the backdrop of the bohemian scene of London's Bloomsbury Group.

Links:

Ratings:
  • Internet Movie Database: 6.8/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 50% / Audience: 75%

Buy/Rent:
  • DVD: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available
  • Book: Available



Trailer:


Awards:
  • BAFTA Award nominations for Best British Film and Actor (Pryce).
  • Cannes Film Festival Award for Best Actor (Pryce) and Special Jury Prize.
  • GLAAD Media Award nomination for Outstanding Film.
  • National Board of Review Award for Best Actress (Thompson).

Notes/Trivia:
  • Michael Holroyd's Lytton Strachey: A Critical Biography was published in two volumes in 1967 and 1968.
  • Potential Director: Mike Newell.
  • Christopher Hampton's directorial debut.
  • In addition to Dora Carrington and Lytton Strachey, other artists and notables from the period that appear in the film as characters include painter Vanessa Bell, writer Gerald Brenan, painter Mark Gertler, patron Lady Ottoline Morrell, writer Frances Partridge and her husband Ralph Partridge.

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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Pillow Talk



1959 American Feature

Cast: Rock Hudson, Doris Day, Tony Randall, Thelma Ritter, Nick Adams, Marcel Dalio, Julia Meade, Allen Jenkins and Lee Patrick
Director: Michael Gordon
Writer: Stanley Shapiro and Maurice Richlin (screenplay); Russell Rouse and Clarence Greene (story)

Synopsis:
A womanizing songwriter spends hours on the phone wooing his many women. Problem is, he shares a party line with a prim interior decorator, who's miffed because she can't get any of her calls. But then he spots she and it's love at first sight.

Links:

Ratings:
  • Internet Movie Database: 7.5/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 92% / Audience: 87%
  • OMG rating: 7/10

Buy/Rent:
  • DVD/Blu-ray: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available



Trailer:


Awards:
  • Academy Award for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay - Written Directly for the Screen; also nominated for Best Actress (Day), Supporting Actress (Ritter), Color Art Direction and Music, Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture.
  • Golden Globe Award nominations for Best Motion Picture - Comedy, Actress - Comedy (Day) and Supporting Actor (Randall).
  • Writers Guild of America nomination for Best Written American Comedy.

Notes/Trivia:
  • Rock Hudson turned down the film three times, believing the script to be "too risqué". Before he finally agreed, he insisted that his friend Nick Adams be given a part.
  • First of three films to showcase the trio of Doris Day, Rock Hudson and Tony Randall, followed by Lover Come Back (1961) and Send Me No Flowers (1964).
  • Upon its release, Pillow Talk brought in a then staggering domestic box-office gross of $18,750,000 and gave Rock Hudson's career a comeback after the failure of A Farewell to Arms earlier that year.
  • In 2002, Pillow Talk was ranked #99 on the American Film Institute's "100 Years, 100 Passions" list.
  • The 2003 film Down with Love, starring Renée Zellweger, Ewan McGregor, Sarah Paulson and David Hyde Pierce, was an homage to Pillow Talk, highlighted by a cameo appearance by Tony Randall.
  • In 2009, Pillow Talk was inducted into the National Film Registry.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Laura



1944 American Feature

Cast: Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews, Clifton Webb, Vincent Price, Judith Anderson and Dorothy Adams
Director: Otto Preminger
Writer: Jay Dratler, Samuel Hoffenstein, Betty Reinhardt and Ring Lardner Jr. (uncredited), based on the novel by Vera Caspary

Synopsis:
New York City Police Detective Mark McPherson becomes obsessed with Laura Hunt, a beautiful Park Avenue socialite whose brutal murder he is investigating.

Links:

Ratings:
  • Internet Movie Database: 8.1/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 100% / Audience: 91%
  • OMG rating: 9/10

Buy/Rent:
  • DVD/Blu-ray: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available
  • Book: Available



Trailer:


Awards:
  • Academy Award for Best Black and White Cinematography; also nominated for Best Director, Supporting Actor (Webb), Screenplay and Black and White Art Direction.

Notes/Trivia:
  • Vera Caspary's Laura began as a play titled Ring Twice for Laura. She adapted it into a novel which first ran as a seven-part serial in Collier's magazine in 1942. It was published in book form the following year, and the stage play eventually premiered on Broadway in 1946 with a cast that included Otto Kruger and Hugh Marlowe.
  • Casting Call: John Hodiak, Jennifer Jones, Hedy Lamarr, Rosalind Russell and George Sanders.
  • 20th Century Fox studio head Darryl F. Zanuck was opposed to casting Clifton Webb as the effete Waldo Lydecker because of Webb's well-known (in Hollywood at least) homosexuality, but Otto Preminger prevailed and the 54-year-old Webb, making his first screen appearance since 1925, was nominated for an Oscar for his iconic performance and continued in motion pictures for another 18 years.
  • The film was originally to be directed by Rouben Mamoulian, but following creative differences with Otto Preminger, who initiated the project as producer, Mamoulian was fired and Preminger took over the direction, scrapping all of Mamoulian's footage.
  • David Raksin's haunting "Laura's Theme" was originally entitled "Judy" in honor of Judy Garland. Lyrics by Johnny Mercer were added later, and the song was recorded by several singers, including Nat King Cole, Dick Haymes and Frank Sinatra.
  • The novel Laura was subsequently adapted three times for television, first as an episode of the anthology series The 20th Century-Fox Hour in 1955 starring George Sanders and Robert Stack. Following a 1962 German adaptation, Sanders and Stack returned for a 1968 remake that also starred Arlene Francis and Farley Granger and featured a script co-written by Truman Capote.
  • In 1999, Laura was inducted into the National Film Registry.
  • In 2001, Laura was ranked #73 on the American Film Institute's "100 Years, 100 Thrills" list.
  • In 2005, Laura was ranked #7 on the American Film Institute's "100 Years of Film Scores" list.
  • In 2008, Laura was ranked the #4 Mystery on the American Film Institute's "10 Top 10s" list.

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Monday, February 16, 2015

The Handmaid's Tale



1990 American Feature

Cast: Natasha Richardson, Faye Dunaway, Aidan Quinn, Elizabeth McGovern, Victoria Tennant, Robert Duvall, Blanche Baker and Traci Lind
Director: Volker Schlöndorff
Writer: Harold Pinter, based on the novel by Margaret Atwood

Synopsis:
In a dystopian future polluted by right wing religious tyranny, a young woman is put into sexual slavery on account of her now rare fertility.

Links:

Ratings:
  • Internet Movie Database: 6.0/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 23% / Audience: 44%

Buy/Rent:
  • DVD: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available
  • Book: Available



Trailer:


Awards:
  • GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Film.

Notes/Trivia:
  • Margaret Atwood's award-winning novel The Handmaid's Tale was first published in 1985. The title was inspired by Geoffrey Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales, which is a series of similarly-titled connected stories ("The Merchant's Tale", "The Parson's Tale", etc.).
  • Although he is credited as screenwriter, Harold Pinter has said that most of what ended up on screen wasn't from his screenplay, which to date he has refused to publish.
  • In addition to the film, The Handmaid's Tale has been adapted into several mediums, including a radio drama, an opera, a stage play and a ballet.

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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit



1989 British Television Mini-Series

Cast: Charlotte Coleman, Geraldine McEwan, Emily Aston, Cathryn Bradshaw, Kenneth Cranham, Freda Dowie, Pam Ferris, Richard Henders, Barbara Hicks, Celia Imrie, Katy Murphy, Elizabeth Spriggs and David Thewlis
Director: Beeban Kidron
Writer: Jeanette Winterson, based on her novel

Synopsis:
Jess, a girl growing up in a Pentecostal evangelical household in Lancashire, England, develops an "unnatural" relationship with her friend Melanie.

Links:

Ratings:

Buy/Rent:
  • DVD: Available
  • Book: Available



Video clip:


Awards:
  • BAFTA Award for Best Drama Series/Serial, Actress (McEwan) and Film Sound; also nominated for Best Actress (Aston, Coleman), Film Cameraman, Costume Design and Television Music.
  • GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding TV Movie.
  • San Francisco International Lesbian & Gay Film Festival Audience Award for Best Feature.

Notes/Trivia:
  • Jeanette Winterson's award-winning, semi-autobiographical first novel Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit was first published in 1985. Winterson also penned a non-fiction account of her life at this time in her 2011 memoir Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?.
  • The allegorical fairy tales that are woven into the novel as well as some of the sex scenes were not included in the screen adaptation. Even with these cuts the series caused controversy when it originally aired due to the remaining lesbian sex scenes and its portrayal of the Elim Pentecostal faith.
  • Originally aired in three parts on the BBC.
  • The book was released as an audiobook in 1990. It was read by Charlotte Coleman, who played Jess in the television adaptation.

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Sunday, February 8, 2015

The Trials of Oscar Wilde



1960 British Feature
Alternate Titles: The Man with the Green Carnation / The Green Carnation

Cast: Peter Finch, Yvonne Mitchell, James Mason, Nigel Patrick, Lionel Jeffries, John Fraser, Sonia Dresdel, Maxine Audley and James Booth
Director: Ken Hughes
Writers: Ken Hughes and Montgomery Hyde, based on the play The Stringed Lute: An Evocation in Dialogue of Oscar Wilde by John Furnell

Synopsis:
At the height of his fame, Oscar Wilde angers the Lord Queensbury by having a romantic relationship with his son, Lord Alfred Douglas. When Queensbury slanders Wilde, the celebrated writer decides to take the matter to court, leading to his own downfall.

Links:

Ratings:

Buy/Rent:
  • DVD: Available
  • Book: Available



Video clip:


Awards:
  • BAFTA Award for Best British Actor (Finch); also nominated for Best Film from Any Source, British Film, British Actor (Fraser) and British Screenplay.
  • Golden Globe Samuel Goldwyn Award for Best English-Language Foreign Film.

Notes/Trivia:
  • The Stringed Lute: An Evocation in Dialogue of Oscar Wilde by John Furnell was published in 1955. 
  • John Gielgud said that he was originally offered the role of Oscar Wilde. He turned the film down, saying, "no one could look less like Wilde than I do, not even Peter Finch".
  • This was one of two British films about Oscar Wilde released in 1960, the other being Oscar Wilde, starring Robert Morley.

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Sunday, February 1, 2015

Silkwood



1983 American Feature

Cast: Meryl Streep, Kurt Russell, Cher, Craig T. Nelson, Diana Scarwid, Fred Ward, Ron Silver, David Strathairn and M. Emmet Walsh
Director: Mike Nichols
Writers: Nora Ephron and Alice Arlen

Synopsis:
The story of Karen Silkwood, a worker at a plutonium processing plant who fought to expose blatant worker safety violations at the plant.

Links:

Ratings:
  • Internet Movie Database: 7.2/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 71% / Audience: 78%
  • Metacritic - Critics: 64% / Audience: 8.4%
  • OMG rating: 8/10

Buy/Rent:
  • DVD: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available



Trailer:


Awards:
  • Academy Award nominations for Best Director, Actress (Streep), Supporting Actress (Cher), Original Screenplay and Film Editing.
  • BAFTA Award nominations for Best Actress (Streep) and Supporting Actress (Cher).
  • Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress (Cher); Best Motion Picture - Drama, Director, Actress - Drama (Streep) and Supporting Actor (Russell).
  • Writers Guild of America Award nomination for Best Original Drama.

Notes/Trivia:

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Rate Silkwood below and add your own reviews in the comments section.

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