FIRST LOOK: David Tennant In Bring The Noise For Sky 1
David Tennant features in the first episode of the UK’s new music-based game show Bring The Noise, coming to Sky 1 next week.
The show is hosted by Kaiser Chiefs frontman Ricky Wilson and David’s fellow guests include Martin Kemp of Spandau Ballet and regular panellists Nicole Scherzinger, Tinie Tempah, Katherine Ryan and Joel Dommett.
Watch Bring The Noise on Thursday 22nd October on Sky 1 from 9pm
Alzner and Alex Ovechkin are the Capitals’ most avid collectors. For
Ovechkin, swaps are simple because his own stick is sought after due to
his elite status and the blade’s unique curve. Ovechkin estimated he has
60 sticks — legends such as Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Brett Hull
represented — displayed along the walls of his home gym….
Alzner laughed that his stick has only been
requested back twice, with one occasion being this season. He asked
Detroit Red Wings rookie Dylan Larkin for a stick as they lined up for a
faceoff, and a flattered Larkin wanted to trade, so Alzner inscribed a
message to the speedy 19-year-old to “slow down.”
That is so damn cute. KING KARL IS GREAT, MORE PEOPLE SHOULD WANT HIS STICKS, I WANT KARL TO GET ALL THE STICKS.
That the practice is considered to be what Ottawa’s Zack Smith called
an “elite players’ ritual” makes some players hesitant to participate.
Smith said he wouldn’t feel comfortable asking for someone’s stick
because of the occasionally abrasive role he plays on the ice.
Washington’s Tom Wilson agreed. “It’s kind of tough when you go out and
hammer a guy and then ask for a stick after,” Wilson said with a shrug.
…Now I feel bad for Tom. Tom deserves sticks as well.
The more unique a stick is, the more desirable. Alzner pines for the
stick of San Jose Sharks center Joe Thornton, in part because he uses so
few a year. It’s in two pieces, so Thornton typically just changes out
the blade. Alzner has tried and failed to get one for three or four
years, but is hopeful former Capitals winger Joel Ward, now with the
Sharks, can help facilitate an acquisition.
The whole article is great, and covers a bunch of different teams and players. Also. Stick swapping as, like, a feature of trying to find your soulmate/soulbond, please discuss.
An impromptu hallway interview with Joel Edgerton and Isla Fisher in 2013 in which they talk about their costumes for “The Great Gatsby” and in which Isla renders Joel momentarily speechless when she jokes that he was wearing a codpiece as Tom Buchanan….
Epic Movie (Re)Watch #151 - The Phantom of the Opera (2004)
Have I seen it before: Yes
Did I like it then: Yes.
Do I remember it: Yes.
Did I see it in theaters: No.
1) The attempt to bring Andrew Lloyd Webber’s iconic stage adaptation of The Phantom of the Opera to the screen started all the way back in 1989. Back then, it was going to star Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman (who originated the roles of The Phantom and Christine, respectively). The project was ready to begin filming in 1990 with a November 1991 release date, but then Lloyd Webber divorced Brightman (they had been married) and production was stalled. In the interim, John Travolta, Heath Ledger, Matthew McConaughey, Meat Loaf, and Antonio Banderas were considered for the role of the titular character (with Bandera specifically training his voice for the role for years, only getting a chance to sing it during a Royal Albert Hall celebration of Andrew Lloyd Webber). At one point it was going to star Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway, but Jackman was busy with Van Helsing and Hathaway had The Princess Diaries 2 to film. Charlotte Church and Kate Winslet were also considered for the role of Christine before Emmy Rossum was cast. Through that time, Joel Schumacher had always been Lloyd Webber’s choice of director because of his work on The Lost Boys. In fact, the screenplay used was written by the pair all the way back in 1989. That means between writing of the screenplay and release, fifteen years went by. Now that I’m done with that fun fact…
2) I think this film improves on the Broadway shows prologue. The use of black and white is a nice touch, as is the decision to age up Patrick Wilson’s Raoul instead of having an elderly actor play the part. It is the first inkling of how the adaptation is able to use the differences between filmmaking and the stage to its advantage.
3) I first saw the stage production of this in August of 2009, then the film a few months afterward. It took me an embarrassingly long time (think years) to figure out that the broken chandelier was lot 666.
4) This adaptation REVELS in the freedoms you have in film versus what you have on stage, mainly through it’s use of three-dimensional space. On stage you have to present all the action in a single location and then orchestrate a scene change. But we get to see how the opera house is as much a character in the film as its titular Phantom of Christine. The film also utilizes the ability to shift POV between characters quite well, as again on stage your POV is stuck with whoever is in front of you. Here we can cut between characters in between scenes and get a fuller view of the picture. All this - as well as its well done use of special effects - gives the film a grander film. It is easy often times for a stage-to-film adaptation to feel stunted, but the team behind Phantom sure as hell knows how to avoid those problems. It’s one of the best parts of the adaptation.
5) Patrick Wilson as Raoul.
So at the risk of offending Phantom purists (something I maybe should have put as a disclaimer on this post), I have always found Raoul to be remarkably bland. No matter how good the performance is, I just have never found him an enticing character. He’s literally just there to be the healthy alternative to The Phantom’s love for Christine. I actually think Wilson does quite well as Raoul, making him the most interesting I’ve ever seen. He is able to make Raoul a bit more aggressive, a bit more strong headed, especially when going after The Phantom. But that’s about it. I think Wilson does admirable and he’s always been a favorite of mine, but I just find Raoul so damn boring.
6) Miranda Richardson as Madame Giry.
Otherwise known as, “The only French character based on a French story in a musical which takes place in French who has a French accent.” Richardson is a talented character actress, as I noted in my Sleepy Hollow recap. She is able to make Giry compelling, interesting, mysterious. You understand that she’s hiding things, but her suspicion never makes her dislikable. To the contrary, the way Richardson plays the part makes Giry all the more fascinating. In my opinion, Giry is as mysterious as The Phantom in this film because of Richardson’s performance.
7) Okay, Firmin (one of the theater owners) making eyes at Christine is weird. Depending on the translation of the novel you read, she’s fifteen. And yes the actress was eighteen at the time of playing her, but still. Creepy. Also when Madame Giry says she’s an orphan this seems to encourage Firmin’s advances and I gag a little.
8) A little wink to another work of Andrew Lloyd Weber’s
Former Theater Owner [on how to deal with Carlotta]: “Grovel. Grovel, grovel.”
(One of the songs from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat was “Grovel Grovel”.)
9) Minnie Driver as Carlotta.
I love Minnie Driver and she is absolutely perfect as Carlotta in this film. She is able to play the conceited diva MARVELOUSLY well (claiming to channel an old neighbor she had in Venice for the part). She totally loses herself in the part. This isn’t Skylar from Good Will Hunting, this isn’t Debi from Gross Pointe Blank, this is someone who is totally new. Driver is phenomenal in the part, although she didn’t do her own signing. She is a singer (contributing her vocals to the end credits song “Learn to Be Lonely”) but not an opera singer, so she had to be dubbed in. Nonetheless, she is an incredible addition to the film.
10) Emmy Rossum as Christine Daaé.
The protagonist of the film (more-so than The Phantom even), this was one of (if not THE) biggest roles the 18 year old had at the time. Rossum is great in the part, abel to capture Christine’s vulnerability without making her weak. Her honesty without making her naive. Christine is a character defined by her massive heart. She has incredible passion for music, a deep connection with her long dead father, incredible sympathy with The Phantom, and a wonderful friendship-turned-romance with Raoul. But she never come across as a damsel or as a fool. I think Rossum’s performance is a big part of that. You’re rooting for Christine and you love that she makes you do so.
11) Christine’s first number is her big performance of “Think of Me” for the opera house. During the neighbor the filmmakers gave her this angelic glow which I find…really distracting. Like it’s weird to me. I get they’re trying to emphasis her purity, but she looks a bit like a ghost.
(GIF source unknown [if this is your GIF please let me know].)
12) I do like the chemistry Rossum and Wilson have as Christine and Raoul. It’s not hot sweats pure passion chemistry, but it is a trust and honesty they have with each other. They’re old friends and that comes through in their performances. You get that they’re the right fit for each other.
13) Gerard Butler as the titular Phantom of the Opera.
The casting of Butler has been a controversial one following the release of the film. He’s not a classically trained singer and at times it shows. When it does show it can be distracting, but that’s not to discredit his performance as a whole. For the most part his singing is top notch, I would say 95% of the time. It is just you can be a little thrown off when there’s that 5% that isn’t what you were expecting.
I personally do not find Butler to be bad in the part. Quite the contrary, I think he’s pretty great. In my recap of The Bounty Hunter I noted he didn’t have the right kind of charisma to play the romantic comedy angle. This is not true here. To start, Butler fills out The Phantom’s physicality very well. Just the look he has in the mask and the cloak is a powerful visual. More than that though, he is able to portray all facets of the Phantom with expertise and grace. His passion, madness, obsession, instability, sorrow, and later heartache all are done with the appearance of ease by the Scottish performer. There are times when he breaks your heart, there are times when you hate him, but you are never bored by him. He always holds your attention and I think that is key in playing such an iconic character. And again, Butler is just great in the role.
14) Nowhere is Andrew Lloyd Weber’s skills as a composer better showcased in this film than the double billing of “The Phantom of the Opera” and “Music of the Night.”
To start with, the titular song is able to be creepy, macabre, invasive, chilling, fascinating, and eerie all at the same time. It perfectly represents just the horror and mystery The Phantom carries with him. Then turn around right into “The Music of the Night”…
This is the song which particularly gives us an amazing glimpse of who The Phantom is as a character. Nowhere in the film is he quite as voluntarily vulnerable as he is right now. His hearts is on his SLEEVES as he sings to Christine of his world, of who he is as a character. Through the seamless transition from the chills of “Phantom of the Opera” into a piece of music which is moving, heartbreaking, gut-wrenching, and just as fascinating, “Music of the Night” is quite possibly the best song in this whole film.
Having said that, it is a song which requires acting to match it. And Butler is at his best during this number. That previously mentioned vulnerability is on full display through Butler’s performance. You can understand his compassion for Christine, not only through his voice but also through his physicality. He plays the heart of the scene incredibly well. Rossum is great here too, showing off her fascination and wonder of The Phantom and his own through no words or song, just movement and expression. They both do a great job of elevating the number as it should be.
15) When listening to “Music of the Night” I believe that The Phantom’s obsession is not exclusively about finding a romantic love with Christine, but more about finding someone to be with him in the night. He is devastatingly lonely and wants a companion with him in the darkness. Who is a more devoted companion than a spouse?
16) The scene where Christine unmasks The Phantom only for him to fly off the handles makes something perfectly clear: the mask is as much for him as it is for everyone else. The Phantom deals with INCREDIBLE amounts of self loathing and metal health issues. He is afraid of being the monster people call him, he is afraid of letting them define him. The mask is an attempt to define himself. As I will explain later, it doesn’t work as well as he would hope.
The double billing of the song begins as a nice peek into the relationship with theater owners Firmin and Andrew and their friendship (romance?). It also begins to illustrate just how deep the conflict between The Phantom and the egotism of the Opera/rules of the world in light run. You begin to see the hinges coming off of The Phantom as he tries ordering around everyone, setting up the drastic lengths he will go to later on.
The “Primadonna” half of the number serves as a fine montage. Showing just how the owners convince Carlotta to participate in the show and what lengths they are willing to go to to keep her. And it continue the film’s use of movement through a three dimensional space to convey sense of scope and plot, something which cannot be done to such an effect on stage. It’s a nice number but - again, at risk of offending Phantom purists - could it have been cut? It works fine on the stage but this film is two-hours-and-twenty-three minutes long. Would it not have been as effective to cut it for the screen and just had a standard scene of dialogue and score to convince Carlotta to stick around? I know it is blasphemy to consider cutting any number from one of the most iconic Broadway musicals of all time, but I can’t help but wonder if the film would have been better off without it.
18) It was during “Primadonna” when I realized something:
Carlotta’s goal is the same as Lina Lamont’s from Singin’ in the Rain.
They are both incredibly popular actresses with annoying voices looking to destroy the careers of an up and coming actress to ensure their own future success.
Now that you can’t unsee that…
19) The duality of Christine’s compassion/sympathy for The Phantom mixed with her fear of him later one creates a nice conflict for her. Something which is interesting to watch and should parallel the audience’s own feelings.
20) “All I Ask of You”
The number serves mostly as a nice moment of trust and honesty between Christine and Raoul. It is here where one would start shipping them, so to say. Yet while in most productions of the stage play you learn that The Phantom was there the entire time AFTER the song is done, you see his reaction to hearing Christine’s and Raoul’s love DURING the song. His constant presence is heartbreaking, an emotion Butler plays so well. It’s not just that Christine is choosing Raoul over him, she’s choosing the light. She’s choosing day instead of night, cementing the Phantom’s loneliness. Making it all the more heartbreaking for him. This was his once chance to not die alone and he just lost it. And it breaks your heart.
This is my favorite number in the film. Largely because it is one of the few light moments in the production, but more than that it ties into The Phantom’s own personal struggles in a way you don’t first understand upon listening. The “heroes” of the day (in a kind of elitist way) are practically gloating at The Phantom’s disappearance in a way which is mocking to his pain. They wear masks for fun, he wears a mask because he has to. Because he has been beaten and torn down because of his face. The lyrics take on a much sadder meaning with the reprise later in the film.
22) How fitting is it that The Phantom shows up to the masquerade dressed as The Mask of The Red Death?
“The Mask of The Red Death” is a short story written by Edgar Allan Poe where wealthy noblemen attempt to hide from a plaque known as the Red Death by hiding in an abbey. There, they host a masquerade ball when a figure disguised as a Red Death victim enters and makes his way through each of the rooms. His presence marks the deaths of every guest by the hands of the same disease they were so desperately trying to avoid. Basically a bunch of elitists try to hide from those beneath them and in their arrogance sign their own death warrants. I like that.
23) Briefly Raoul pursues The Phantom into a secret compartment under the opera house and finds a room full of mirrors, unable to determine which is the reflection and which is the man. This is not an element of the stage play, but an instead of the original novel. The Phantom would lock victims up in this room to drive them mad. I like the nod.
24) I first saw this stage production while it was traveling in 2009, then again when my alma mater put it on just a year after I graduated high school. I don’t remember Madame Giry going so in depth about The Phantom’s origins so much on stage, but I’m sure as hell glad the film has it.
Once again, the movie does an excellent job of utilizing point of view to add elements. Seeing just how terribly The Phantom was treated is devastating. As a child he was beaten, mocked, and treated like an animal for years. Referred to only as “The Devil Child” by his captors he only free himself by killing a man and then being forced to hide in the Opera House ever since he was a boy. No wonder the man went mad. No wonder he hides his face. He’s terrified of being exactly what people said he was, and because of the way he was treated that cruelty he’s afraid of is linked directly to his deformity. By hiding his face, he hides the monster. Or so he thinks.
25) I love this line, because it shows just how much we don’t know about The Phantom.
Giry: “He’s an architect and designer. He’s composure and magician. He’s a genius, mousier.”
If I’m not mistake, in the original novel The Phantom DESIGNED the opera house (as well as a palace for a Persian king). He is portrayed as being the greatest artistic mind of the century and the most mad. All in service of more depth to his character.
26) Again this is probably blasphemy to Phantom purists, but I always tune out during “Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again”. Rossum is great in the song, conveying the sorrow she feels over missing her father, but come on. Do we need a three to five minute number just to understand, “I really miss my dad, I wish he was here with me?”
I must admit the song is a beautiful piece of heartache and sorrow, while also giving us our best peek into Christine’s relationship with her late father, but it just slows down the pacing too much for me personally.
27) Similarly, the action of the following sword fight between The Phantom and Raoul is another thing that on its own I really like. The decision to add a bit more action to the film as well as giving Raoul more to do is something I appreciate. But it just slows down the pacing too much for me, personally.
Christine [after they plan to use Christine as bait to lure out The Phantom]: “Raoul I’m frightened. Don’t make me do this.”
Can I just say I would like Raoul so much more as a character if he said, “Alright, I won’t make you do this. We can run for it. Just you and me.” I would love that, I would love if Christine came to the decision herself as, “No, even if I’m afraid I have to do this.” She sort of does that in the film as is but I would have liked both Raoul and that decision more if Raoul weren’t pressuring her to do it.
29) So the opera is performing The Phantom’s play Don Juan and the actor playing the titular Don steps off stage and The Phantom steps back on in costume as the don.
And I’m just thinking: really? No one immediately notices that the actor’s height, weight, and voice has changed? No one stands up and shouts, “Hey, that’s The Phantom!” and they just shoot him before he gets to close to Christine? They just roll with it? Do they people in the audience actually believe this is the tubby guy from before? Am I overthinking this?
30) Naming a song “The Point of Return” makes it pretty clear what is happening in the musical at this point, but beyond that the composition of the number does an excellent job of conveying its title. You feel the weight in the music more so than the lyrics, and that’s where the power is.
31) So The Phantom is ugly. He wears his mask to hide a hideous deformity that the world has totally shunned him for. It is this deformity which have caused him to be beaten repeatedly, tortured, and called the Devil’s Child as a kid. And then Christine goes to remove his mask and we FINALLY see the blood curling horror which is The Phantom’s face…
(GIF source unknown [if this is your GIF] please let me know.)
I do enjoy this film more than some others do, but come on. This is supposed to be one of the most hideously disfigured characters in all of fiction. He’s not even supposed to be human!
33) The decision to put the chandelier crash at the end of the film instead of the end of the first act I think is a smart change. When you’re doing a Broadway show you need a solid ending to act one, in film you usually want to hide the structure as well as you can. There’s no three acts (or at least there’s not supposed to be), there’s just one story. So it makes sense to have the chandelier at the end.
34) The film’s entire climax is incredibly key to The Phantom as a character, and Butler is absolutely stellar in the scene.
THIS is his madness as its greatest. His desperation and his pain has become total to him. There is nothing else. It is here that it becomes clear that the ugliness of his face has entered his soul. He has come the monster he was said to be as a child not because of any physical deformity but because of the mind crippling loneliness that deformity has brought him. He just doesn’t want to be alone anymore, and it is that decision that drives him to madness. And it is the first sign of companionship which brings him back to some form of reason.
Christine: “God give me courage to show you you are not alone.”
That is all The Phantom ever needed. Something real, something which showed him that he could be loved despite his face. He doesn’t lose Christine because of his scars. He loses her because of his actions. And the kiss shows him that. And he lets them go before listening to the music box singing the lyrics to Masquerade.
Phantom: “Masquerade…paper faces on display. Masquerade, hide your face so the world will never find you.”
35) Okay, ever since seeing the original stage production, this image of Meg finding the Phantom’s mask while dressed the way she is makes me want them to go on swashbuckling international adventures.
I really enjoy this adaptation. I think it conveys the stage musical in an effective and equally macabre way, that it uses the change in format to it’s advantage, and that it is acted remarkably well (even the controversial casting of Gerard Butler I think is pretty great). I just really enjoy this film and the heart it carries with it. If you’re a fan of musicals, horror, Andrew Lloyd Webber, any of the actors involved, or Andrew Lloyd Webber, I recommend giving it a view.
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