“That’s Chanel, and it only works with leather leggings,” interior decorator Kate de Brienne whispered skeptically to her handler, in reference to a passing demoiselle who had just entered the “Take Home a Nude” benefit at Sotheby’s. Shindigger noticed that Ms. de Brienne had eschewed Chanel—the headlining sponsor of the affair—for look No. 40 from Christian Dior’s autumn 2013 collection.
Actress Maggie Gyllenhaal had spent Tuesday night at the Cinema Society premiere party for her latest film, White House Down, in which she plays an uptight Secret Service agent. The next evening she was on the red carpet again, this time at the West Village’s STK Rooftop, where Gotham Magazine was celebrating their first summer issue with Ms. Gyllenhaal on the cover (and Russian Standard Vodka sponsoring the event). Other attendees included EIC Catherine Sabino, publisher Suzanne Ruffa and Rohan Marley.
Since the premiere of the Channing Tatum/Jamie Foxx flick about saving the president from a group of rogue paramilitary troops happened to coincide with several watershed moments in American politics–everything from the security leaks at the NSA to the Supreme Court’s rulings on gay marriage and the Civil Rights Act–we asked the feather-clad actress if she’d been fielding a lot of questions about her personal politics.
Taking on the school choice issue that has made its way into the headlines via California’s controversial new parent trigger laws, Won’t Back Down faces an uphill climb at the box office. Its heroes are the parents and renegade teachers who risk everything to improve the education of children in failing schools. Its villains are the teachers’ unions that stand between a million rules and restrictions and the chance of a better life for a handful of children. The movie is going to be controversial, depending on how you feel about labor unions. My feeling is that the schoolroom is no place for political agendas, and all that matters is how good a movie it is. And it is pretty good, but flawed for a number of reasons, detailed below. Nevertheless, it’s a film that deserves to be seen, savored, debated and given serious attention.
Won’t Back Down, starring Maggie Gyllenhaal and Viola Davis as a parent and teacher struggling to turn around a failing school, is a movie that clearly wants to say something, even if The Observer had a hard time hearing what they were saying because of chanting protestors.
Hysteria is Jane Austen with a vibrator—a movie about the invention of the scandalous electro-mechanical device that changed women’s lives forever. Set in the Victorian era of scientific ignorance and cultural Puritanism, its style is still more Restoration comedy than Victorian decadence—postcolonial feminism with a temperament more Austen than Bronte. Nothing to snicker about here. Considering the subject, ripe with titillating possibilities, it’s surprisingly about as sexy as a week-old meat loaf. Tastefully directed by Tanya Wexler, it is a total joy from start to finish.
The second half of this year’s Tribeca Film Festival slate was revealed today, with Spotlight screenings of Julie Delpy’s 2 Days in New York (her follow-up to 2 Days in Paris, costarring Chris Rock), Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud’s Chicken With Plums, and Tanya Wexler’s Hysteria (starring Maggie Gyllenhaal in the story of the invention Read More
Maggie Gyllenhaal, whose last big screen role was in Crazy Heart in 2009, is reportedly gravitating towards the planned HBO series adaptation of Jonathan Franzen’s The Corrections. The Daily Mail reports that the series is shaping up towards a planned 40-episode run, with a two-hour pilot directed by Noah Baumbach. As sauerkraut chef Denise, she’d be Read More
Head to Head
It’s that time of year again when we get to marvel at the many things worn at Anna Wintour’s party the Costume Institute gala at the Met. This year’s theme, “The American Woman,” was perhaps a little bit easier for sartorially challenged celebrities to understand and therefore please their red carpet audiences.
After all, the Read More
The iPhone has been gobbling up the smart-phone market once dominated by the BlackBerry—and if it’s made available on the Verizon Wireless network, as rumored, it’ll get another big bite. But which gadget is really better?
Any idiot can use an iPhone—and we know, because we’ve seen it happen. BlackBerry gets a Read More
Running time 111 minutes
Written and directed by Scott Cooper
Starring Jeff Bridges, Maggie Gyllenhaal,
Colin Farrell, Robert Duvall
Jeff Bridges is not aging well, but when he stopped shaving, he started acting. The acting shows in Crazy Heart, an otherwise boring slice of country-fried steak with an exceptional performance by the Read More