He was a boy that did a shitty thing. Everyone does shitty things. Zach stayed with her when Marcus was a nasty slime ball. She rejected him, and he was hurt. People do shitty and stupid stuff when they’re hurt. As for trying to cover up Bryce, he wasn’t defending his actions. He was a scared boy in high school. Y’all can say all you want that you’d turn Bryce in right away, but Bryce was his friend, and he was a scared teenager. He doesn’t get a pass on his actions, but cut him some slack. HE JUST WANTED TO BE A MARINE BIOLOGIST DAMMIT.
• pairing: jeon jungkook x reader, college! jungkook • genre/warnings: smut, explicit sexual descriptions,
exhibitionist themes, slightly-sub! jungkook, switch themes, oral sex, face sitting • words: 8,460 → summary: jungkook seems to have a little crush on you, and no matter how much you try to ignore it, you seem to be losing your resolve with each passing day…
This may be an unpopular opinion, but… I think that while neurotypicals can certainly find fidget toys to be useful, the way it is becoming increasingly popularized by neurotypicals is kinda trivializing and ignoring the true purpose of these fidget/stim toys? Like if you’re neurotypical or neurodivergent and you use fidget spinners for fidgeting purposes to help you keep calm and concentrate, great, but the way this stuff is being promoted is more as a regular old “toy” than for its intended purpose and I find that to be problematic. The people trivializing fidget toys aren’t all neurotypicals as well; some of them are neurodivergent, but I find it’s a lot more common for neurotypicals to dismiss the purpose of fidget toys and popularize them for an arbitrary purpose rather than neurodivergent people, the people these fidget toys were originally intended for.
1) This film holds a lot of personal significance to me. I first saw it when I was 13 in one of the hardest months of my life. I was sick with pneumonia (diagnosed that day) and my great grandmother had just died, so the whole family was over because the funeral was that week. It was late and someone wanted to put in a movie so my dad pulls out Chicago. My mother was a little bit strangely strict about what PG-13 movies I could and could not see, usually forbidding more sexual stuff than anything else. So this was the most sexual film I had seen at the time and I had felt because of that, and the fact I was watching it with all the adults of my family, that I had been promoted to the adult table in some senses. I was really captivated by the music, the story, the moral ambiguity, it was just so different from anything else I’ve seen. I would not be Just Another Cinemaniac without Chicago. In some ways its as important to my film fan identity as Back to the Future.
2) The film opens with an extreme close up on Roxie’s (Renée Zellweger’s) eye, giving us our first inkling on how this is a musical in Roxie’s mind. But more on that later.
3) Note that we never see Velma Kelly’s (Catherine Zeta Jones’) face until she’s on stage giving a performance. This creates the feeling that Velma is ALWAYS putting on a performance.
4) Catherine Zeta Jones as Velma Kelly.
This film is pretty much perfectly cast, I think. 4 of its actors were nominated for Oscars, with another being nominated for a Golden Globe. Zeta Jones actually won her first (and to date only) Oscar for her role in this film, and for good reason to. She IS Velma Kelly. Zeta Jones is totally lost in the role, being able present all of Velma’s different qualities. Her showmanship, her rare vulnerability, her killer instinct, and it all just WORKS. You never EVER feel like you’re watching an actress. Zeta Jones IS Velma Kelly and as the first character we get a nice long look at, it is a great performance to start the film off with.
5) Hey, it’s Dominic West!
6) Renée Zellweger as Roxie Hart.
Roxie is really the lead of this film, the character who we follow along and see the world through. The writing is really interesting. It would have been easy to start Roxie off as some innocent girl who made a mistake and goes on this big journey, but Roxie - despite whatever facade she puts up - is hardly some innocent girl. She readily and passionately has an affair even though her husband is a pretty nice guy (and not a “nice guy” where the guy acts nice but is really a jerk, but is actually pretty kind), murderers her lover just for being a jerk (there are better reasons to murderer someone), all while putting up this act like she did nothing wrong and is the victim. And I honestly think she believes it.
Renée Zellweger captures all these conflicting parts of Roxie’s character with true mastery. She also is able to handle Roxie’s transformation into a more cutthroat and determined creature with the same expertise. Like with Zeta Jones, you never feel like you’re watching Zellweger just giving a performance. She is - for all intents and purposes - Roxie. Originally Charlize Theron was cast in the part but after a change in directors there was a change in casting, and Zellweger had to learn signing and dancing for the film. It paid off wonderfully, as she was nominated for an Oscar for what is possibly her best role ever.
7) John C. Reilly as Amos.
John C. Reilly was also nominated for an Oscar for his performance in this film, and it is clear why. Amos is the only honestly good character in the film, and even then he is not without his flaws. He is not above losing his temper or being able to say when enough is enough when it comes to Roxie (you know, the woman who cheats on him, tries to have him take the fall for murder, and manipulates him in court just to get off). But - because this is Chicago - he’s the only main(ish) character to come out the other side being totally and utterly screwed over. There are some nice layers to Amos (mainly the loss of temper as mentioned above) and Reilly is just totally sincere in the part. It’s no wonder he was nominated for an Oscar.
8) This film sets itself apart from other movie musicals through the idea that the musical is all in Roxie’s head.
This creates a plausible explanation for why character’s burst into song and dance, allows the film to utilize some unique editing and art direction, and finally gives us a nice peek into Roxie’s head. This element allows us to see just how passionate Roxie is not only for the desire to perform but also the desire for fame. It also lets us know how she sees OTHER characters in the film (namely Billy Flynn, but more on that later). I think it is this key element that set the film up for such critical and artistic success, leading to its best picture win at the Oscars.
9) Danny Elfman provides a few nice instrumental pieces of score for the film which feel totally period Chicago. When you are adapting a popular musical such as Chicago adding extra music could be a challenge, but Elfman’s occasional score blends perfectly with the rest of the film.
10) Queen Latifah as Mama.
Latifah rounds out the quartet of Academy Award nominated performances with her portrayal as Matron Mama Morton. I think it’s Latifah’s best performance. She is able to portray Mama as cooperative and a bit soft spoken, but still someone who deals with no bullshit from her inmates. She is as manipulative as any other character in this film, if not as in big a way. You often hear her tell Roxie and Velma EXACTLY what they want to hear knowing that it will lead to a big pay day for her. It is a crafty role which Latifah plays well, and her introductory song “When You’re Good to Mama” shows off not only this characterization but Roxie’s perception of her quite well. It also allows for Latifah to show off her impressive singing chops.
11) The Cell Block Tango.
Where do I even begin with this number? It is by far the most iconic and best part of the entire film. The filmmakers are able to use the idea of “the musical in Roxie’s mind” to create a visually unique and compelling number which is edited together seamlessly with the “real world” of the Cook County jail Roxie finds herself in. Each of the “murderess mistresses” is given enough time to create a unique character and create a sense of the world Roxie (and the audience) finds herself in at this time. I particularly find the use of ribbons to illustrate blood/murder wildly effective, noting that Hunyak’s ribbon (the girl who constantly claims she is not guilty) is white whereas the others are red. This suggest that she is - in fact - innocent.
It is also worth noting that while the first story starts off very much “I’m guilty, here’s what happened”, that by the time we get to the inmate who claims her husband “ran into her knife” ten times the stories have become more and more claiming of legal innocence. This is a trend which continues through Velma’s story, where she claims she blacked out after seeing her husband & sister having sex and came to with blood on her hands. We as the audience have actually seen NOTHING which contradicts this story, further creating a nice sense of showmanship within the film.
12) Okay, I am all for good female friendships on film and television, but I would be lying if I said the catty relationship between Velma & Roxie was not entertaining. I think this is a byproduct from good writing (with what we know about these characters, how ELSE could their relationship go?) and the wildly captivating chemistry between Zeta Jones and Zellweger. Their relationship is one of the key sources of conflict throughout the film and with those two actresses it just WORKS.
13) Richard Gere as Billy Flynn.
The number in Roxie’s head which introduces us to Flynn - “All I Care About” - is a pitch perfect example of expectations vs. reality. After what she’s heard about Billy (which isn’t much mind you), Roxie expects him to be this honest to goodness lawyer who only wants to save women from dying in by the noose in Chicago. What we get however is the craftiest, most manipulative skeeze ball in the film. So why is he so damn likable? Who is he comparable to the roguish Han Solo? Why do we root for him? I think that is all in Gere’s performance. It would be easily to play him as a disgusting slime ball but there is a charisma that Gere brings which I think elevates the character and the film. Originally offered to Hugh Jackman & John Travolta at different parts, Gere’s chemistry with the rest of the cast is great and although the film didn’t land him an Oscar nomination he did receive a Golden Globe for his work.
14) I think it’s worth noting that Roxie does not take too long to adapt to prison. Again evidence that she’s not as innocent as she wants people to think.
15) “We Both Reached For The Gun”
I can never tell if this or “Razzle Dazzle” is my favorite number in the film, but I think for a visual standpoint it HAS to be this. This is once again where the conceit of “the musical in Roxie’s head” benefits the film GREATLY. The imagery of Roxie being a dummy operated by Billy to sell her story not reflects on their relationship in an incredibly clear way (as well as how Billy is literally using people) but also is just visually fascinating. Zellweger is a lot of fun during the number, and if you ever want to know why this film won the Oscar for best editing the year it was nominated just watch this scene.
16) The song “Roxie” when Roxie is at the top of her game is a great character study. It goes even deeper into Roxie’s desire for fame and admiration, a key quality in her character that drives pretty much all her actions throughout the film. It features gorgeous cinematography with its use of mirrors and presents us with Roxie’s ideal self. This ideal self is not a good person (not necessarily), but someone who is adored by her audience. If that doesn’t speak to who Roxie is as a character I don’t know what does.
17) A film is told in cuts, as in cutting from one moment to the next in as clean and clear a way as possible.
Velma [after Mama suggests she kisses Roxie’s ass to maintain some position]: “Over my dead body.”
[We cut to the mess hall, where Velma is seen smiling at Roxie]
Velma: “Mind if I join you?”
18) “I Can’t Do It Alone”
Up until this point we have not seen Velma truly vulnerable. We have peeked more into who Roxie is as a character than who Velma is. That all changes with this number, which shows us that Velma is just as desperate for the spotlight as Roxie is. She NEEDS to stay relevant, she NEEDS the fame and the admiration, and only when it was too late did she realize that the murder of her sister took away one of the key things that made her so desirable to the world in the first place. This song is a fun number that adds nice depth to Zeta Jones’ character and shows off just how talented she can be with Velma’s vulnerability.
19) My heart broke a little when I saw Velma’s face after Roxie’s rejection of her.
And in that moment and that moment alone, I think I shipped the two of them together.
20) Lucy Liu’s glorified cameo as Kitty, the newest jazz killer in Chicago and the one who threatens to take away Roxie’s fame, is a perfect example of how easily Roxie can fall. But here’s the thing, Roxie is smarter than she appears. And more manipulative. It is her greatest strength that people underestimate her, so when she “faints” and mentions “the baby” everyone - from Velma to Billy - are all surprised by her.
21) I was a naive 13 year old. I didn’t understand that the doctor who said he’d testify that Roxie was pregnant had very clearly slept with her (hence Billy’s remark about his fly being open).
22) “Mister Cellophane”
Somehow this song not only shows us how ROXIE perceives her estranged husband as being someone who’s not worth caring about, but also makes Amos into a sympathetic character. He is not particularly whiny about the fact that he’s oft forgotten, he’s just a little sad about it. Reilly’s performance in the song is filled with soft sorrow and vulnerability we don’t always get to see from the actor, an honesty which carries the entire song on its back. It is a truly worthy number to be included with the rest of the film, with its Chaplin like art style and Reilly’s vocals, and I’m glad it made the cut.
23) In a lot of ways Chicago is a noir comedy musical. I say this for two reasons: Amos being kinda screwed over at the end, and the fact that Hunyak - the only innocent girl in the jail - is the only who is hanged. This also reminds Roxie of the fact that she IS on trial for murder and of the fatal consequences she could face.
24) “Razzle Dazzle”
If “We Both Reached for the Gun” is my favorite number in the film from a stylistic standpoint, then “Razzle Dazzle” is probably my favorite from a thematic one. Gere expresses Flynn’s belief that the courts are just a circus, simply entertainment to be manipulated, in a way which is just that: entertaining. I am always totally taken in by the song through its themes of craftiness, playful melody, and fun visuals. It is just a wonderful number which I love watching again and again.
25) If “Razzle Dazzle” doesn’t tell you how Billy sees the court system than this line will:
Hell, the non-musical court room scenes are in a lot of ways more dramatic than the musical ones.
26) This film had a song which was shot but not included in the final cut, one sung between Mama and Velma called “Class”. Still found on the movie’s soundtrack, “Class” had the pair discuss how the world seems to have gone to shit and how no one has any class. It was cut both for pacing issues and - largely - because it did not fit the theme of “the musical in Roxie’s head”. Roxie was at the court house and these two started singing after hearing about what was going on over the radio. It is a wonderful song but I think the film works better without it featured.
27) It took absolutely no time at all for Roxie not to matter. The press didn’t even want her picture after the verdict was read. Another killer, another star.
28) The final number of the film is a dual thing. The first of which is Roxie singing the song “Nowadays” on her own at an audition. The song is sad, somber, and lacks umph. This causes the directors to pass on Roxie. But when Velma and Kelly work together? When they’re able to work with their heat and chemistry and put on a duet of “Nowadays”? The umph is back and it is a wonderful number to end the film on!
I’m obviously biased through my own personal experience with the film, but I think Chicago is quite possibly the best movie musical of the 21st century (yes, even better than Les Miserables). The acting is incredible across the board, with Catherine Zeta Jones and Renée Zellweger being the obvious standouts. The concept of “the musical in Roxie’s head” allows for a musical which is unique and supports a wonderful art style. The songs are fun, the pacing and editing are great, and it’s a technical spectacle in its subtletly. Just a wonderfully entertaining film I think everyone should watch.
Howdy! Could you write something with Yondu where
the reader owns a bar and he visits a lot and what not. Maybe they fall in love
over time and he kisses her (Maybe some smut if you are comfortable writing it
if not ignore this part!)
Every relationship has its struggles when you travel, especially being an Avenger. When you and your boyfriend have another argument while you’re away for a mission, you decide once you land you’re going to go to the apartment to apologize. When Buck drops you off, something seems off what you find out throws you for a loop and thank God for Bucky Barnes and Tequila. Till you start spouting off about your true feelings to the wrong or would you call it the right person?
—The two of you have acted together on many different shows, beginning with Slayers where to you played Lina and Xellos, and Neon Genesis Evangelion where you were Ayanami Rei and Nagisa Kaworu. How did you feel when you found out that you would be acting together in this show?
Ishida: When I found out that Hayashibara-san would be my counterpart, I was like “Oh boy, what a frightening partner…” In a variety of ways.
Hayashibara: What’s this? Where? And how come? …like this, you mean? (chuckles)
Ishida: Oh, no no (chuckles). As everyone is well aware, you’re an incredible actor, right? Such a person is probably strict with themselves, and also with those acting beside them. At least, that’s what I figured.
Hayashibara: “That’s what I figured”…could you make sure that’s in large, bold font? (chuckles)
Ishida: Like, should I try to fake it, with my level of ability, you’d see right through me. You’d see through me no matter what I did, so I put myself on guard right from the start.
Hayashibara: Say what?!
Ishida: It’s especially true for this anime, but even for the other shows we’ve worked on together, I’ve always thought that you’re someone who makes the people you are acting with rather tense, no matter what the atmosphere of the studio seems like on the surface.
Hayashibara: Is that so…how interesting!
Ishida: “There’s so much pressure just in the fact that I have to do rakugo…and on top of that, I’ll be working with Yamadera (Kouichi)-san and Hayashibara-san, huh? Good heavens…” That’s pretty much what it felt like (chuckles).
Hayashibara: As for me, I was offered the part only after Yamadera-san, Ishida-san and Seki (Tomokazu)-kun had all been confirmed. So somewhere in the back of my mind, I feel that, if it hadn’t been you and Yamadera-san in those roles, then it probably wouldn’t have been me either. I’m not sure what it is, perhaps the balance of our voices, or our mentalities, or perhaps the wavelength we’re on, or our bonds in our previous lives (chuckles), but we just match, somehow. It was the same when I did Cowboy Bebop. Ishizuka (Unshō)-san and Yamadera-san were chosen first, and then I came in as the voice between them.
—After you started recording, could you tell us about what you sensed and took from each other’s acting?
Ishida: It was like Miyokichi was moving the story along at my pace, in a good way. Or perhaps, I felt that it was good that they met when the story was moving along. And just as I was becoming comfortable with the atmosphere of the studio where we were recording Rakugo Shinjuu, Kikuhiko was becoming comfortable with Miyokichi—this is probably something that men tend to do, but it felt a bit like a part of me was standing somewhat above her, looking down on her. I’m really glad that there was such an overlap, where the way that my character became familiar with his partner reflected my own experience in the studio.
Hayashibara: As for me, rather than being able to ‘take from’ Ishida-san’s acting, it was all I could do to try and grasp who Miyokichi was. I’m sure that Ishida-san and Yamadera-san both struggled with and spent a lot of time thinking about their own characters as well, but from my perspective, they were already Kiku-san and Sukeroku through and through. Just how could I slip into the space between them as Miyokichi? I wasted a lot of time during the recordings for the first half of the series trying to figure that out.
____Was Miyokichi a difficult character to play?
Hayashibara: Just the other day, I saw the latest episode on TV, and even then I found myself reflecting a little, like “Oh dear, was this correct…?” Which is really unusual for me (chuckles). There’s a line where Miyokichi says “I’m stupid, so…” but what I took from it was “This girl is no idiot, is she?” How much of that is just her acting out the part, and how much of it is real idiocy? It was pretty difficult treading the fine line between the two. And Kiku-san probably loves that idiocy in the way that a man loves “a woman who is just a little more broken than he is.” Whatever he says, he sees through the way she acts and what he finds on the other side, he loves even more. Or something like that. In playing Miyokichi, I was caught between the two (acting vs. real idiocy). It was in that episode 9 scene with Sukeroku that she finally settled on one side. That line of “Did something happen? I’ll hear you out…”—at first, I was directed to play it more listlessly, as if I’d lost everything. But Kubota Haruko-sensei, the mangaka, was actually at the studio when we recording that episode, and she said: “That line actually represents the point where she starts taking her revenge.” With that, the direction changed again, and I thought to myself “She really is no idiot.” It was then that I finally felt I’d grasped Miyokichi, just a little. Nevertheless, I honestly believe that there are points where her actions are motivated purely because she’s in love, and it’s precisely because she’s a woman who’s almost impossible to grasp that Kiku-san, too, is captivated by her. That’s right, a woman that Kiku-san would really fall in love with—just what kind of woman is that? In pondering that very question, I definitely used parts of my brain that I’d never used before. …hey Kiku-san, what exactly do you love about Miyokichi? (chuckles)
Ishida: (chuckles) Well, if I pick up the thread from what Hayashibara-san has just said, then Kiku has probably never thought that Miyokichi was an idiot. He knows that she’s someone who has used a range of wiles to survive, to get to where she is now. And because he sees her in this way, what he feels for her for her isn’t the kind of romantic love held by the average, modern high schooler who’s in love with his or her classmate. But when she’s there beside him, he finds himself responding to her allure. He’s a pitiful guy, after all. In that way, he lets himself be influenced by her, but at the same time, he’s cooly looking at himself, saying “This isn’t romantic love.” And he probably thinks of himself, of this person looking on so cooly, as “a real slime-ball,” too. But he is simply unable to throw away that feeling of comfort that he gets by being by her side. He’s a weak guy…or rather, an unfair one. In episode 8, he gets angry when he comes back from the regional tour and sees Sukeroku and Miyokichi in an embrace, doesn’t he? Personally, I don’t think he was that angry, not really (chuckles), but I also kind of understand why he was upset. Even though he didn’t regard himself as being in love, he gets irritated at the thought of parting with her. So, I also have to reflect on my performance, just like Hayashibara-san. That scene where Kiku says “I am (being a man). This is the greatest lie of my life”—when we recorded it, I went into the scene taking those words quite literally. But now that I think about it, it’s not like Kikuhiko was prepared to keep their relationship going—that kind of thought was probably in the back of his head, too. Hence, I’m sure that those words that he said to Sukeroku were, at some level, a lie aimed at deceiving himself as well.
Hayashibara: There are so many emotions on the other side of “I love you” that we no longer know which of them are right and which of them are wrong. In particular, in the middle part of the show, I felt like I was waiting for the directors’ guidance with regards to what was coming out of me naturally at that time. But if we think about it, that’s what real romantic love is like. It’s not like you’re reading out a love letter that expresses everything clearly in a set number of words. The attitude your partner takes at any particular point also changes the words you use, and it’s not as if it will play out the way you have planned. In that sense, even those elements of my performance that I thought may have been incorrect, may have been right as far as results go—I’ve been trying to think about it along those lines without trying to justify myself. Beyond that, all that remains is to leave it up to the viewers to decide how they feel about it.
—How do the two of you perceive Sukeroku?
Ishida: He’s someone who is real to the bone, with no artifice.
Hayashibara: Yup, I’m with you there. And that’s why he gets messed up (chuckles). Miyokichi envied him, just because he and Kiku-san got along too well. Something may have happened in Manchuria as well, but she simply has no interest in a guy who foolishly tries to woo her, so openly, too, despite knowing that she’s his master’s mistress (chuckles). In the end, a man like Kiku-san is more appealing to her—someone who fights to restrain himself, thinking “I can’t touch her because she’s my master’s,” but who gradually loses that fight and lays his hands on her. Hence, if Kiku-san hadn’t gotten involved with her, I don’t think she would have taken any interest in Sukeroku.
—And that did not change even after she took him back to her hometown?
Hayashibara: Because this was her revenge. But since Sukeroku just has so much warmth about him, I think that being with him may have felt comfortable to her. In that sense, she may have felt at times that he was causing her to forget (what she wanted). With Kiku-san, he’s so cold that she feels that she has to warm him up, but Sukeroku is just warm, unconditionally warm. Like the stomach of a golden retriever (chuckles). That kind of warm, comfortable feeling.
Ishida: I think that Kikuhiko has always been frustrated and envious of how Sukeroku found success with his completely different way of living, but if you ask me whether he felt something particular when he saw Sukeroku and Miyokichi’s together, then I suspect that he probably didn’t. In fact, given that he was, at that time, thinking that it wouldn’t be a good idea to keep dragging things out with Miyokichi in that way, it was like a godsend to him. Not that he’d say it, but I suspect that he probably felt something along the lines of “Thank you for creating the opportunity for me to break up with her.”
—As for Kikuhiko and Sukeroku, it was like they had a shared fate through rakugo, but it was ripped apart because of Miyokichi. How have you interpreted that aspect of the story?
Ishida: Kiku probably wouldn’t have ever imagined that, as a result of him dumping Miyokichi, that she would move to the countryside with Sukeroku. And there’s no way he would ever have wanted such an outcome.
Hayashibara: But if I look at it not from Miyokichi’s perspective but simply as a viewer, whether Miyokichi had been there or not, I feel that it would have been difficult for Sukeroku to continue doing rakugo in Tokyo. He would probably have distanced himself from Kiku-san, don’t you think?
Ishida: I suspect that Kikuhiko probably didn’t think of such a possibility. Sukeroku was getting a lot of backlash because of what he was doing, what he was aiming for, and a lot of problems were arising as a result. But fans were also full of praise for for his amazing performances. Hence, whilst it would have been best if Sukeroku did not cause any problems, but if he did, then Kikuhiko intended to continue backing him up. And I think there still was quite a way to go before he ran out of patience.
Hayashibara: I see…then Miyo-chan did indeed take Sukeroku away… That girl really is no idiot. The “revenge” that Kumota-sensei spoke about was that very act.