Friday, August 24, 2012

Motor City and the New Super Max Commercial

Two interesting things concerning the Muse happened a few nights ago.  First of all I finished reading a draft of Motor City I'd started earlier in the day. Secondly, before going to bed, I happened on a website that had just posted a link to a new Super Max Commercial featuring a clean shaven, long haired Gerry and several pretty ladies, one them being his much speculated "personal" leading lady.

I found the young lady in question extremely attractive and quite effective in the commercial and the interplay between them was very cute

I found the commercial appealing and pretty much in line with the L'Oreal commercials in the sense that they both dealt with "what it means to be Gerard Butler" or a  "day in the life of Gerard Butler," which,  it seems, includes women reacting in a very positive way (with lots of touching) to the smooth skin on his clean shaven face.

When I watched it the first time, I had to laugh a little because without his scruff, the Muse's nose was more prominent than normal and his face a little pale, probably due to the fact that most of it has not seen the light of day for a good while now.  And, since we've not seen him clean shaven in a long time, there seemed to be less elasticity to his skin than when he was a bit younger and heavier.

Another thing that made the Muse look a little strange was that the lighter hair, which looked great in Mavericks,  was minus the "life of it's own" it usually displays.  It was wetted down and coiffed to perfection, like he'd just stepped out of a salon....and Gerry is not the "perfection" kind of guy.

We did get a little more of the messy look towards the end with a male "bonding over sports," scene.

Aside from these initial reactions and after a second view, I realized I liked the commercial because it took me back to something I've always said about him, that it is the animation of his face and the eyes which lends Gerard Butler his attractiveness...his charm, if you will, and is why a lot of still photographs never do him justice.  The looser skin in his face worked very well in this commercial because the ladies were sure enjoying moving it around and because it allowed him to be very expressive.  And it is that expressiveness and animation that leads me into the second topic, his starring role as John Miller in Motor City.

As most of you will know by now,  Motor City is a movie about revenge, which features little or no dialogue.  The very short script (at least the draft I read) features non stop action from start to finish.   As I was reading it, it reminded me of every other revenge movie I've seen with a little of Scar Face and a scene reminiscent of Godfather thrown in.

Having said that, what makes it "different" from a lot of your run of the mill revenge films is the almost total lack of dialogue.   In my opinion, this "silence" will be the saving grace of the movie because it will be a force the actors to display their talents and tell us the story with their expressions and the use of their bodies in movement or stillness.  They cannot do it in "The Artist,""silent movie"  kind of way, but will be forced to do it in a more dark, understated,  film noir kind of way and say much with eyes and pauses and nervousness, to show hatred and  blind stubbornness and perseverance and rage and anger just with body language.   This is a little bit of the kind of thing I said I wanted to see Gerry do and I hope the filmmakers don't flesh it out too much and lose the few little moments of intimacy of the story or just make it about the cars and the chases and the violence.  If they do that it will lose something in translation to the screen and will have nothing to distinguish it from all the other movies of the type we've seen.

I think the casting will be very important for the supporting roles and I also hope the female cast for the role of Sophia will fit the part.  Although her screen time with the lead may not be all that great, she is the axis around which the pivotal males roles dance.

I am looking forward to seeing how the filmmakers handle this movie, the different looks of the main characters as the storyline encompasses different time periods and goes both backward and forward in time.  I love nothing better than reading a script and then seeing what they do with the final product.  Sometimes it is disappointing and sometimes it's not.  I hope this is one of those times when I will be pleasantly surprised at how well they translate the screenwriter's vision.

And I hope the Muse will show us what he can do, given the chance to act with some of his best tools, his face and his body.

I understand Adrian Brody has signed on to play the main antagonist.  After reading that, I wonder if a certain young lady will read for the part of Sophia.  I certainly could picture her doing it.

Now that would really be interesting casting...if we let our imaginations run wild!

I also wonder if Mickey Rourke wasn't originally cast for the role Savick?   I really couldn't picture him  as Ramirez and think Brody the better choice for that one.

With several more roles to be filled,  it will be interesting to see what further develops with this project.

I guess I will stay tuned in.


Songs out of tune, the words always a little wrong...Canzoni Stonate

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

What a Man Needs

I've been reading all the articles and blogs about the race to the theaters between the Muse's Olympus is Down and the Channing Tatum starred White House Taken and feel the need to comment about it. Some bloggers are asking which movie will be a hit and which one will be the miss and people have been weighing in on both sides.   A few of Gerry's fans are posting in the comments section to support him.

Some of you will forgive me if I step on some toes here, but if I'm going to write anything, I have to be honest about it, so here goes.

It is my opinion that the movie which will be the most successful of the two will very much depend on each actor's releases between now and then.   If the Muse's next two movies are well received and have good box office receipts, chances are Olympus Has Fallen will do well.   If they do not do well, then White House Taken will be the winner.   That is the name of the game.  Winners breed winners in Hollywood and you are only as hot as your last movie.  That is the fact unless you are Meryl Streep or Robert De Niro with a long resume of hits.

As I read the comments in defense of Gerry on some of these blogs, I start to wonder if perhaps his fans might do him a bigger favor by NOT saying how gorgeous he is and how you have been a fan forever, but by saying outright a very unemotional..."My vote is for OIympus is Down and I will be in a seat on opening weekend to support it!"   Because ladies, that is EXACTLY what it will take to make any of Gerry's movies successful...the box office numbers on opening weekend and nothing else.  That is the way it is in moviedom at the moment.   If the numbers are not there the rumble starts that brings a movie down.  Even if the critics don't like it, box office receipts are king in this town.

The trailer for Playing for Keeps was just released today.   It looks like a sweet movie where Gerry gets to play Gerry with some very cute kids and some very pretty co-stars. I'm sure it has more depth to it than that and if it doesn't get a lot of competition on its opening weekend, it is likely to do well.   BUT, if it doesn't get good will disappear quickly.  The same goes for Chasing Mavericks, which I think may do better because it will get the surf enthusiasts who will go just to see the waves and the surfing....but that won't be enough.

Now the thing with the Gerard Butler is that while he has a lot of "fan boys" who loved him in 300, they are not going to go see him in "Playing for Keeps."   They want to see the action adventures where he "kicks ass" and that is what they will go see.  Some of them may show up for Chasing Mavericks but it's a fickle audience and  it could just as well go the other way.

Gerry's female fan base, by and large, is made up of mostly middle aged and older women who think he is adorable.  Adorable and 50 cents will get him nothing though if they do not swarm to the theaters on opening weekend to view his movies.   I don't care how much you love him or how much time you spend on the internet singing his praises or answering negative comments from others....if you wait for his movies to come out in DVD your love and admiration will not do anything for him.  What the man needs is for you to purchase a ticket to see Chasing Maverick and Playing the Field on opening weekend.  Then if the movies pull in enough date night couples and surfers they will have a chance to make decent numbers.  And those decent numbers will dictate if Gerard Butler's movie Olympus is Down will make the box office it needs to beat White House Down.

It's as simple or complicated as that.  It's all in the numbers and if the movies make the numbers they will be in theaters longer and his name will be out there and it will prove he can be a box office draw and that 300 was not just a fluke.  I actually wish he had a decent action adventure movie coming out first, but that is not the case.

So here's what you do, even if you think you will not be able to go to a theater on opening weekend, for whatever reason, or the movies are not playing in your neck of the woods just yet.   First of all, you save your pennies.  Then you go on the internet to or Fandango or ArcLight or whatever theater it is playing near you and buy your opening weekend tickets online.'s like voting by absentee ballot in case you are ill or going on vacation and can't make it to the polls on voting day.   It's a guarantee that your vote will be counted no matter what your situation.   Only for Gerry's movies, you will be voting with your pocketbook.   AND, if you can make it to the theater, all well and good.   But for those of you who can' will have put your money where your mouth is and where your admiration for this actor is...and that is what this particular man needs from you at the moment.

Soooo, if you think Chasing Mavericks and Playing for Keeps look wonderful or adorable or whatever you feel about it...purchase a ticket for opening weekend!  Do your bit.  Just like you would support your favorite candidate for President or your Representative or Senators by making even small donations to their campaigns and feel good that you are doing your part to get these people elected, so it is with your favorite actors.

The Muse needs your vote of confidence, not just your admiration.  The way movies come and go have to support the ones you want to see so that Hollywood will know this is what you want to see more of.  With so many big movies that have flopped lately, executives are rethinking where they will put their money.

If you want to see more of the Muse onscreen, then vote with your dollars.  But it opening weekend!  It still may not be enough, but you will have done your part and voted your taste.

That is all that is in me today.  It's too hot and I'm going to sit outside with a cool drink and my Ipod and daydream a little, looking at the stars.

Hopefully it's clear in Shreveport and the Muse is able to sit outside (slathered with lots of repellent) and enjoy his lake side perch if only for a moment before hitting the sack.  I'm sure he's exhausted from the long hours of filming and the brutal heat...but if he could read this post I absolutely know he would agree with what I've said here.

Goodnight moon.

Songs out of tune, the words always a little wrong...Canzoni Stonate

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Writer's Block and The Muse

I have been very lazy about posting lately and that is NOT a good thing for a person who has a blog.  I'm still suffering from some serious writer's block, not to mention watching another beloved relative dealing with a devastating disease.  It's bad enough seeing my darling Annie forgetting how to cough and struggle for breath, but now a dear brother-in law has been diagnosed with ALS.  You can imagine the specter of that one.  This person has been a member of our family for longer than any of us can remember and watching him deteriorate and come to grips with it is very sad.

A born optimist, I try not to let this kind of thing get me down to the point where I cannot be helpful to those that need me, but for some reason this has struck me fairly hard.  Already suffering from the stupid writer's block, this has added another dimension to the problem, a lingering depression that is hard to shake off despite the smiling, cheerful face I turn to the world.  I can't afford to be down because I am the one that gets everyone up.  It's just that simple.  So if they can struggle to stay alive, then I should be able to get moving and write, right?

Well apparently not so simple because I seem to want to do everything but put my mind to doing the work that I need to do to get past it.  I have read several books that touch on the subject and purchased a CD that gives subliminal messages to line up the right and left brain while listening to heavy rain on pavement. I've listened to part of it once and haven't touched it again.  I'm not sure it will work, but just posting these thoughts on here tonight is a start.  I am suddenly feeling hopeful.

Last night I went out to dinner and took along a script that needs serious revision.  It is not the one I sent out for professional critique (I haven't been able to touch it since I got it back and that's when all the trouble started), but a romance/comedy that I think has possibilities with a good general overhaul. I have all but decided not to write anymore screenplays, but to concentrate on novels/fiction instead,  however I really want to give the ones I have written a chance to survive before I switch, so...

Anyway, the fact I got some work done yesterday has made me very happy and I think it might have been the breakthrough I needed.  It was also very flattering that some guy, who was having dinner on his own (a sometime actor with a sag card) came over and started up a conversation.  He was terribly complimentary but said he was hesitant to ask me out because he felt I would find him too old.   When he told me his age I laughed at the fact I had four years on him and told him so.  I probably shouldn't have...but I'm not a good liar.  He was flabbergasted and told me he thought I was amazing.   We talked for a while longer and shook hands and he left.   Fifteen minutes later he comes back and said he wanted to see me again and asked for my phone number.  I was hesitant to give it to him, but did, thinking he would go home and think about not wanting to date a woman older than he when there are so many young ones out there.  Besides that, he's not really my type, but he did stroke my vanity and in my present state, that is one thing that always picks me up.  I already have an archeologist who is pursuing me and he's not my type what's one more so "not my type" ringing me up?

Now, since I've gotten my feet wet again putting down these few sentences and getting a few things off my chest, I shall turn to the Muse, after all, that is the purpose of this muse about the Muse.

In that vein, I've been reading a little about his current projects and know he is in Shreveport again, filming Olympus is Down.  I do hope they keep that name for the movie.   It's certainly better than White House Taken/Down.  But dumbing down for the masses is so prevalent in Hollywood, they feel  they have to hit you over the head with the titles so that you will understand it's an action adventure.  I think people can be trusted to understand that when they say Olympus...they are talking about the seat of power (as Mt. Olympus was the home of the Gods who ruled ancient Greece) and a good code name for the White House.

What's in a look?  A lot.
I must say I was disappointed to see Gerry cut/darken his hair and shave for this role, but it was to be expected for an ex secret service agent.  He has to play to type.  The problem is that I had gotten used to seeing his longer mane and found the look he employed for Mavericks (yes I know it is now Chasing Mavericks...but rebel that I am I shall still call it Mavericks)...quite good for him, particularly when his hair wasn't sticking out in all directions.  I also like facial hair on him.  He is one of the few men that can get away with it and look good.  I also understand he shaved for a commercial he did for a blade company. Hopefully we will get to see it!

Buttoned Up
I saw the trailers for Mavericks and it looks promising.  I had heard some things about the project that didn't sound too encouraging, but I expect it may give the Muse a chance to display his charms. He certainly provides the physical eye candy for the I hope his acting is  good too!  His watchability quotient is high with me still, so I will go see it opening weekend and hopefully it will prove a person who mentioned it wasn't very good, wrong.  As male egos go in Hollywood, one has to take these kinds of critiques with a grain of salt.  Perhaps this person (who was involved in the project) didn't have a good experience in whatever it was he did for the film.  I didn't ask, as I am a closeted admirer of the Muse and showing undue interest in the conversation going on across the table that afternoon at the Chateau Marmont would have outed me.

With Playing the Field and Mavericks both coming out soon and a slew of new projects on his docket, I think it is safe to say that we will be hearing a lot about Gerard Butler for quite a while.   I am still waiting to see that spark of the "romantic" lead I saw in him years ago come to fruition on some project.  I get that he is good at the action stuff, but in my eyes, until he plays a serious romantic lead, I'm not sure he will live up to the early promise.  I like who he is as a person, but more than that I want to like what he can become on the screen. When I go to see one of his movies,  I want to come away in love with his screen persona again.

Sexy coming through the character?

I thought he was very good in Coriolanus, a little less so in Machine Gun Preacher, though he had some very bright moments and he was a wonderful King Leonidas in 300, but he hasn't made me believe him quite like I did in The Jury and in Dear Frankie, where the look in his eyes was enough to make me believe he was that tall, quiet stranger who could say so much with a look.  I will be looking for that quality to shine through again in each of his movies and hope fame hasn't killed it in him.

He's still one of the sexiest looking actors out there, even among the crop of young actors who are all the rage now, but I want to see a sexiness from him onscreen that doesn't shout it out ... the kind that needs not speak it to be it...the kind that just "is" because it is a part of who he is and it naturally melds with the character he plays.

I know he is keeping a low profile these days and I think that is good for his career.  Like I've said before...maybe he is growing up a little.  Oh, not in the "stiff upper lip" kind of way...but perhaps in the not having to be so "out there" all the time to be famous, kind of way.  I want (and he should want) his fame to come as much from his performances as it does from his persona.

Either way, I'm still here, maybe not to comment so much on his personal life, but always on how"I" react to what he does on the screen (and off) and on his ability to make me "feel" something for the character he is playing.  I actually want him to "be" the character not just to "play" him... and in the end...I want to be cheering for both of them to triumph!

Songs out of tune, the words always a little wrong...Canzoni Stonate