Back in May, there was something magical brewing an hour and a half outside Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Namely: director Richard LaGravenese's big screen adaptation of the first in a serious of beloved young adult novels, ‘Beautiful Creatures.’ And we were there on set, braving the 90-degree heat to bring you all the juicy details! Trust us, we may've come for the cast list (Jeremy Irons! Emmy Rossum!) but we stayed for the catering (mac and cheese, fried chicken and corn bread were considered nothing more than a pithy midday snack around those parts).
Back in May, we were lucky enough to visit the Louisiana set of director Richard LaGravenese's latest film 'Beautiful Creatures,' and we're thrilled to give you a first glimpse at it's two talented young stars Alden Ehrenreich and Alice Englert, as well as some hints of more details and interviews to come!
I hatched the idea to screen 'Say Anything' for our next Sibling Revivalry column last month while Lindsay and I were driving back to New York City from our cousin’s Newport wedding. Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” came on the radio, and we both sighed. “I love this song,” Lindsay said. “'Say Anything,'” I responded. “Uh… anything?” she replied.
This, of course, opened the screeching floodgates of, “You don’t know?!” and “I can’t believe you haven’t seen!” and “But… but… LLOYD DOBLER!” exclamations that resulted in a bleeding heartfelt description of every possible merit surrounding director Cameron Crowe’s painfully great 1989 debut. I’m not sure which of my fervent re-quotes or euphoric utterances convinced her, but she agreed – right there in that rental car, while listening to the dulcet tones of Mr. Gabriel – to give the flick a shot.
I think I’ve made it pretty clear that my sister loathes the in-theater experience. Which is why I was shocked at her reaction after I showed her the ‘Magic Mike’ trailer last month. “I want to see that one opening night!” she squealed. I decided right there that I’d do her one better – I’d take her with me to an advanced screening and we’d write about it. That was the moment, folks, when a very special episode of Sibling Revivalry was born.
I’ll say this much: any future screening that Lindsay attends will have a lot to live up to. She was all giggles and gapes despite having to wait in line for 20 minutes before checking in – the amount of hunky, muscle-bound men (more than a few of them strippers accompanying journalists for perspective pieces) outnumbered women three to one. Though, at one point, she did demand to be served Cosmopolitans. I think she has a much more glamorous perception of my life as a film writer than I’ve earned.
Once we were comfortably seated in the balcony, Lindsay set forth scouting the fresh meat on all sides – having imaginary conversations with beautiful couples (“Love me! Your boyfriend can join!”), fanning herself, and generally acting more ornery than I’ve seen her in years. We couldn’t stop giggling. When projector problems caused the film to begin on the wrong scene – coincidentally, one that flashes Channing Tatum’s bare butt – Lindsay shrieked, “You’re giving it away! Fix it!” As the problem was righted, she mused her concern that the film would never be able to live up to the attractiveness of its audience.
Luckily, Steven Soderbergh’s latest did, in fact, meet – nay, exceed – her expectations. Here’s the conversation we had after screening ‘Magic Mike’ together – let this one live in infamy as the first transcription that almost caused me to suffocate with laughter.
I’ve been a little desperate to show Lindsay a romantic comedy that won’t make her completely barfy, so it’s serendipitous that director Woody Allen’s latest film, ‘To Rome with Love,’ is releasing this Friday, June 22 – it gave us a chance to revisit one of his greatest for our latest Sibling Revivalry screening.
‘Annie Hall’ (1977) is undoubtedly Allen’s most beloved film, and I had high hopes that its authentic (albeit somewhat neurotic) characters and central relationship would resonate with Lindsay on an authentic level.
Turns out, I was right. In fact, Lindsay found something of a surrogate sister in Diane Keaton’s character Annie (I’m frankly a little jealous!). She also learned a thing or two – specifically, regarding the fact that P. Diddy didn’t coin the term "lurve," style icons existed prior to Carrie Bradshaw, and tears shed over insects of unusual size are, "Never about the bug." As an added bonus, I’m pretty sure the film inspired her to come up with a business idea that could earn her millions. Here’s our chat about ‘Annie Hall’ 35 years after the film’s release.
Lindsay, as always, was apprehensive (say the word sci-fi around her and she wrinkles her nose), but – thanks to one furry orange feline – she was pulled into the story (she even narrated some tense scenes to hilarious effect). I, admittedly, cannot watch ‘Alien’ without hiding my face or jumping, so there were moments when I inadvertently gave her cues to the impending action on screen. I chalk it up as a testament to Scott’s work – to this day, ‘Alien’ remains one of the most tense, exciting and imaginative movies I’ve ever seen.
So, after hashing out the fact that Sigourney Weaver was still gorgeous despite her mullet, Lindsay delved into how she’d re-name the film’s monsters, acidic blood as a plot point, Lambert’s inability to give decent directions, and what she’d bring along with her in an escape shuttle. Here’s our discussion about ‘Alien,’ 33 years after its release.
Quite ironically, while countless folks descended to beaches for the unofficial start to the summer season, Lindsay and I watched our next "Sibling Revivalry" film - the ultimate ocean-going horror movie: ‘Jaws.’
Steven Spielberg’s 1975 classic gives me goose bumps to this day, but – unsurprisingly – Lindsay wasn’t nearly as affected. Chalk it up to her lack of patience with the film’s slow burn premise, or the fact that she couldn’t get Jim Carrey parodies out of her head – ‘Jaws’ made her laugh and yawn more than it made her scream.
But, for the record, it did make her scream. Once! We discuss which scenes she found effective, Lindsay’s new use for John Williams’ iconic score, her favorite kill, Hooper’s stupid decisions, and – yes – she manages to find a way to bring Tom Cruise into the conversation, yet again. Here’s our discussion after Lindsay watched ‘Jaws’ for the first time…37 years after its release.
Lindsay, at first, asked that I officially relay that she was "very displeased" with the pick. But, as is becoming a happy trend, she was eventually endeared to the material. (Or perhaps it's the fact that Michael J. Fox is "really cute" – though don't even think about comparing him to Tom Cruise.)
Either way, she was willing to see beyond the "dated" special effects and wardrobe to appreciate the authenticity of the film's relationships and themes. Not that she'll be clamoring to watch the second or third films in the franchise. Here's what we talked about after my little sister's first viewing of 'Back to the Future'…27 years after its release.
In this installment of Sibling Revivalry, Lindsay and I tackle reader Alex’s suggestion – the beloved 1986 Tony Scott classic ‘Top Gun.’
Lindsay was far less trepidatious about this one. Probably because it stars a hunky cast, most notably: young and spritely versions of Tom Cruise, Val Kilmer and Anthony Edwards.
Turns out, she didn’t just see past the film’s “cheesy” exterior, hunky pilots and Iceman’s “Jersey Shore blowout” to enjoy some of its underlying themes, she also dropped some major knowledge on me regarding the way films affected her adolescence. Without further ado, here’s our conversation after my little sister’s first viewing of ‘Top Gun’…26 years after its release.
After forcing my movie-avoiding little sister to watch ‘Titanic’ for the first time recently, it seemed only natural to continue leading her down the path of enlightenment. Which is why I’ll be holding her captive regularly to watch classic films for the first time; the start of a new column titled "Sibling Revivalry."
In this first installment, we tackle ‘Star Wars: A New Hope.’ I have no idea how Lindsay grew up with me and never saw this movie – I was obsessed with it as a kid. One hint is that she’s vehemently opposed to just about everything of the sci-fi persuasion. Case in point: when I emailed her our assignment to watch George Lucas’ famed 1977 space opera, she replied, “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! I am so upset!”
But she made it through all 121 minutes, despite her misgivings. Turns out, she knew more about the ‘Star Wars’ universe than she thought – thanks, apparently, to Mel Brooks and ‘Friends.’ I had to throw out a few modern explanations for some of the plot points (describing Mos Eisley as the Port Authority of Tatooine, for example, or using yoga terminology when talking about The Force), but – for the most part – she followed along.
And here’s what she had to say about watching 'Star Wars' for the first time, 34 years after it hit theaters.