THE COMMUTE: I don't feel at Home in this world anymore & Feud

4:33:00 AM

This is what I watched on the train this:


Feud

The first installment of the anthology series " Feud" focuses on the escalation of Joan Crawford and Bette Davis rivalry during the making of ' Whatever happened to Baby Jane." 
In 1961 Joan Crawford had the demented idea to make a horror movie with her frenemy Betty Davis. It was the same old story, awesome actress gets old, the roles dry up, the studio heads are morons, your last fuckable days have long past. But when the going gets tough, the broads get going. So in a fiction/real life mash up, Betty Davis and Joan Crawford starred in What ever happened to Baby Jane, about, two washed up actresses. It was a smart move professionally, Baby Jane was a succes, but also a masochist one. 
Hollywood always enjoyed pitting women against each other, and only these last few years actress have started to fight back. Times have changed, because opportunities have, Jessica Lange, who plays Crawford, and Susan Sarandon, as Davis,  have plenty of choices, they obviously agreed to do Feud because the script and Ryan Murphy are great, not out of desperation to cling to something, anything to earn that one spot in the limelight.  
What ever happened to Baby Jane, is about two sisters, both actresses, one out to destroy the other out of jealousy. Feud is about two actresses out to destroy each other out of jealousy. Whenever they will film the making of Feud, do you think we will see a cat fight between Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon? I think not. I think those two get along just fine, and that is progress baby. 
I initially wasn't sure about Feud, imagine it to be like Baby Jane, fun but campy. I was wrong. Ryan Murphy has that ability to make real life events crisp, snazzy, not retro in that nostalgic stiff way, but extremely lively. 
I loved the pilot so much that I watched it twice. I live for the decors, every one of Joan's outfits is perfectly matched with the her many rooms, a subtle nod to Joan Crawford's reputation as an control freak.  Bette's style has more swing, humble and funky. Sarandon doesn't have to stretch much to arrive at Davis scratchy skepticism, she is a true heir of that badass woman.
Lange is amazing, instead of making Crawford harsh, she lends her a gentleness and vulnerability that somehow descends in desperation, and true manipulative behaviour.  
The dialogue is very All about Eve, cutting and outrageous. I liked it a lot that Hedda Hopper (Judy Davis) and Jack Warner (Stanley Tucci) who were egoistical crazy makers using blackmail and as much pressure as possible to get what they wanted, still get a chance, we get to understand  the reasons from where they operated from. Ryan Murphy did the same in The people versus O.J. Simpson with Johnny Cochran, showing him using the frustration of the black community to get his very rich client off, without making him seem outright sketchy. So Feud is not cheesy, camp, but fresh, empathic and FUN!
Bring it on, can't wait for more, and that Saul Bass-like ttitle sequence rocks.



I don't feel at home in this world anymore

I could watch Melanie Lynskey movies all day. My favorite is Hello, I must be going. She is adorable, vulnerable, and yet mighty, foul mouthed and tough. It seemed like she hasn't changed since she did Heavenly Creatures, she still has great taste for roles, and she still slays in that quiet, girlie way. In I don't feel at home in this world anymore ( On Netflix now, after winning the Grand Jury Price at Sundance) she is told, "You have these beautiful black little eyes", and that must be it, Melanie has these innocent Bambi eyes, that reflect a very dark world. 

I get why it won at Sundance, I don't feel at home in this world anymore is the perfect movies for these times. If you look around and think: where did all the assholes come from? this is the movie for you. That is how Ruth, a nurse in a post-op facility feels. All day she is confronted by nasty, arrogant, narcissistic folks,  and it gets her way down, even makes her question the meaning of her life. 
The last straw is when Ruth gets home after a awful day at work only to find she has been burglarized. Police won't help. So, having reached a breaking point, she pushes back. Aided by a weird neighbor, Tony (Elijah Wood in another weird great role,) ( the meet cute is something to behold here, you'll see) these two vigilantes go all Michael Douglas on the town, if Falling Down were a funny movie. This one is. I laughed out loud on my train ride. 
But pushing back comes with his own risks, and the violence arrives suddenly, is scary but still comical. 
The answer Ruth finally gets to the her existential question is an oldie but goodie.
See this movie, it's the kind of movie that is impossible not to like. (My husband  didn't, but he doesn't like movies with : "Dumb criminals". Fargo anyone?)

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