To celebrate the last decade 2010-2019 we are counting down the best actresses and discussing some of their most notable and memorable performances of the last decade. With the help of Film Twitter, the ITOL team have selected 30 actresses. Entry No. 15 is Carey Mulligan, and writer Tom Moore discusses Mulligan’s career over the last decade.
With his feature debut, “Les Miserables”, writer/director Ladj Ly creates narrative that’s boiling with tension as it displays the slow rise of rebellion and anarchy in a French city. Now, I know what you’re thinking, is this another adaptation of the iconic novel by Victor Hugo or the musical – it’s not. Ly’s film is more of a modern take on the rebellious nature of the story and is inspired by 2005 riots that took place in Paris suburbs and across France. It has viewers follow the perspective of Stephane Ruiz (Damien Bonnard), a new officer that comes from a small province and transfers to a suburb of Paris called Montfermeil.
Last year was probably one of the best years for film in quite some time. Throughout the entire fall, week after week, it felt like the phrase “oh, this is going to be in my top ten for sure” became incredibly common. From Bong-Ho Joon’s enthralling and mind-blowing depiction of class with “Parasite” to the box-office smashing end of the Infinity Saga with the Russo Brothers’ “Avengers: Endgame”, there were so many new kinds of stories and visions that constantly pushed genre boundaries. 2019 was especially a great year for female filmmakers as there was an onslaught of incredible films from both new and already established women in film.
With awards season in full swing and director Marielle Heller’s newest film “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood” being a big name in all the awards buzz, it’s the perfect time to look back to last year when she brought the story of author Lee Israel to life with “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”. There wasn’t a film that I backed as hard last year to win any and every award possible as much as this film because I truly think it’s perfect. It tells the fascinating and true story of Israel (Melissa McCarthy) falling out of touch with the modern world of literature and turning her talent for being factual into a forgery.
Director Virginie Gourmel’s feature debut, “Cavale”, has the performances, the visual look, and the concept to be a great film, but it is ultimately thwarted by being an experience that’s all too simple and hollow. The film follows Kathy (Lisa Viance), a young girl who is thrown into a psychiatric facility by her father after her mother dies. Feeling trapped inside this new “prison” and being angry at her father for sending her away, Kathy decides to escape when a prime opportunity arises. However, she doesn’t leave alone as her two roommates, the wild Nabila (Yamina Zaghouani) and the shy Carole (Noa Pellizari), quickly follow her out of the door. Even with Nabila and Carole sidetracking her with their drug-fueled antics and abrasive personalities, Kathy is on a mission to confront her father and deal with their unresolved feelings.
Last year, audiences were asked a simple question from a documentary about an iconic symbol of goodness – Won't you be my neighbor? Ah, yes, I’m talking about the heartfelt documentary about Fred Rogers from director Morgan Neville that won the hearts of critics and audiences, but oddly didn’t enough love to earn, or even be nominated for, many major awards. It was actually one of the most talked about and head scratching snubs of last year, however, it seems like Mr. Rogers will find another chance for award recognition this year as director Marielle Heller crafts a heart-warming and heartfelt film that displays the raw power of good that comes from the iconic figure with “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood”.
While the idea of seemingly everything getting a reboot nowadays is starting to become a total drag, there was an odd amount of intrigue I still had for the “Charlies Angels” reboot/sequel/whatever it is. Maybe it was because I liked enjoyed the casting of the new trio of angels or maybe it was because I liked of seeing Elizabeth Banks behind the camera again after “Pitch Perfect 2”. Maybe it’s also because I kind of have a soft spot for franchise and I remember plenty of times that I’d catch “Full Throttle” on TV and always enjoy watching it. So, I had fair expectations going in that the film ultimately meets and exceeds at times, but also falls short of in the same breath.
Seeing that Naoko Yamada’s “A Silent Voice” made our list for the Top 50 Films of the Decade was an absolute treat. Not only because it’s always nice to have some anime appreciation, but it’s also great because the film isn’t talked about as much as it should. Yamada’s adaptation of Yoshitoki Oima’s manga of the same name is easily one of my favorite anime films as it pulls no punches in delivering a timeless story about redemption, understanding others, and finding your voice.
There hasn’t been a stronger or more talked about example childhood fame leading to a destructive transition into adulthood than the story of Shia LaBeouf. After becoming an absolute hit on Disney’s “Even Stevens” and other small movie roles, LaBeouf reached new heights in starring in “Disturbia” and the “Transformers” franchise – that is until people started to talk about something else with LaBeouf. With his countless run-ins with the law, the story of him sitting in a theater watching all of his films, and him telling everyone to “just do it” turning him into a living meme, he basically became the butt of the internet’s jokes.