Abi Morgan

Meryl Streep

By the powers of Athena and all the powerful goddesses who have come before and after her, Meryl Streep, maybe the most righteous female of all, has joined the cast of a film called Suffragette. The film, directed by Sarah Gavron (Brick Lane) and written by Abi Morgan (The Iron Lady, Shame) chronicles, naturally, the beginnings of the  women’s rights movement that blossomed in the late 19th century. Streep will portray British activist Emmeline Pankhurst, a significant figure in the feminist movement and the suffragettes’ battle to get the right to vote. Pankhurst founded the Women’s Social and Political Union and caused a firestorm with her rallying; after one particularly volatile outing, she and her fellow sisters in arms were sent to prison for disturbing the peace, where they then staged a hunger strike to secure themselves better conditions.


The Invisible Woman

*Editor’s note: Our review of The Invisible Woman originally ran during this year’s NYFF, but we’re re-posting it now as the film opens Christmas day in limited theatrical release.* It’s best to assume that when Ralph Fiennes took on the story of Charles Dickens (Fiennes) and his teen lover Ellen “Nelly” Ternan (Felicity Jones) for his The Invisible Woman, he didn’t intend for the film’s big takeaway to be that the beloved British author was basically a big jerk, at least when it came to matters of the heart. And yet, that’s the unexpected result of the apparently fact-based tale, a “romance” devoid of emotion that fails to capture any of the spirit or intelligence of Dickens’ own works. While the film has some very compelling source material, including a book by Claire Tomalin and a script from Abi Morgan (who penned the wonderful Shame and the laughably bad The Iron Lady), it ultimately falls spectacularly flat. Cold, emotionless, and strangely paced, the film thankfully features breathtaking cinematography and one hell of a supporting performance by the real invisible woman in Dickens’ life – his own wife. But this is meant to be a film about a life-changing romance, and it simply doesn’t deliver on that front, no matter how many times Jones wanders a beach with a haunted expression on her face or Fiennes acts out in a horrible way simply because he’s a man in love.



In news that’s so bizarrely in line with two of my greatest cultural interests that it’s frankly eerie, Deadline Hollywood reports that Sony Pictures is currently in negotiations to launch a new Little House On The Prairie feature film that would be helmed by David Gordon Green. The outlet reports that the deal is not done yet, but that it’s currently being working towards. Which is awesome, because Little House On The Prairie is awesome and Laura Ingalls Wilder is so, so awesome that she ranks as both my first female heroine of literature and my favorite female heroine of literature. If you’re not familiar with the Ingalls family –well, first of all, what’s wrong with you? Second of all, they are wonderful. Wilder penned eight books about her life growing up in the 19th century American West, a series that was published between the years of 1932 and 1943. Wilder’s life was rich and fascinating, particularly because she and her family moved so extensively around the burgeoning states, first in Wisconsin and on to Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa, South Dakota, and Missouri, and their trials and tribulations and successes serve as a wonderful microcosm of life during that time period. If there was something to be experienced in the 19th century, the Ingallses experienced it. The Little House books are truly enduring literature.



No, no, it’s not a remake of that Chevy Chase movie with a new female star, and it’s not a reimagining of Ralph Ellison’s seminal novel, but Felicity Jones has snapped up an intriguing role in Ralph Fiennes‘ The Invisible Woman. Baz Bamigboye and The Playlist are reporting that Jones has just signed on for the role of Nelly Ternan in the film, mistress of Charles Dickens, which Fiennes will next direct on the heels of his most recent project, Coriolanus. The film is an adaptation of Claire Tomalin‘s non-fiction book of the same name, with a script by tremendously talented Shame and The Iron Lady screenwriter Abi Morgan. The book centers on the real life romance of young Nelly (who was just eighteen when she took up with Dickens) and the writer (who was forty-five and married). Escandalo! Jones reportedly beat out the latest version of the in-consideration shortlist of up-and-coming young actresses, including Carey Mulligan, Abbie Cornish (who continues to appear on these types of lists, and has yet to land a plum role besides the already critically-maligned W.E., which is a damn shame), and Imogen Poots. While Fiennes was once looking to take on the Dickens role, he has since decided to cast someone else, so that should be the next bit of casting information to hit the ‘net.



When it comes to director/screenwriter Steve McQueen and screenwriter Abi Morgan’s film about living a life of secrets (and what it does to those who carry them), much more is said with their characters’ actions than any of the words that pass through their lips. Even more so when it seems most of the words that are said are unreliable and laced with the feeling that they are not simply lies, but lies each are telling themselves. Shame shows us a complicated and layered world that is both enticing and chilling, begging the question – what kind of music would underscore and accompany these distinctive moments? A mix of score (by composer Harry Escott), piano concertos (as performed by Glenn Gould), jazz (John Coltrane and Chet Baker) and popular music (from Tom Tom Club, Blondie and Chic) come together to create a musical landscape that is both sexy and unsettling while also deeply sad, troubling, and (at times) terrifying. Escott begins the film with an almost mournful-sounding orchestration (aptly titled “Brandon”) as we focus in on our lead, Brandon (Michael Fassbender), lying in bed with a mix of emotions already playing across his face. The piece is driven by an unrelenting ticking which immediately gives you the sense that this is not a place of rest as we begin to realize Brandon’s addiction to nighttime rendezvous may not be the only thing keeping him awake. Brandon never seems able to rest or relax. If he is not out getting his sexual fix, […]

Twitter button
Facebook button
Google+ button
RSS feed

published: 01.29.2015
published: 01.28.2015
published: 01.28.2015
published: 01.28.2015

Some movie websites serve the consumer. Some serve the industry. At Film School Rejects, we serve at the pleasure of the connoisseur. We provide the best reviews, interviews and features to millions of dedicated movie fans who know what they love and love what they know. Because we, like you, simply love the art of the moving picture.
Fantastic Fest 2014
6 Filmmaking Tips: James Gunn
Got a Tip? Send it here:
Neil Miller
Managing Editor:
Scott Beggs
Associate Editors:
Rob Hunter
Kate Erbland
Christopher Campbell
All Rights Reserved © 2006-2014 Reject Media, LLC | Privacy Policy | Design & Development by Face3