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Aniston: 10 films later

Aniston of the week began ten films ago with Tiffanie DeBartolo’s 1996 comedy Dream for An Insomniac. So, what have we learned? According to the Aniston Role Matrix (which I just mocked up today), we’ve seen performances over three decades: five of Aniston’s nineties and early noughties Friends era movies, two in the late noughties and three from this decade. Aniston has played two health … Continue reading Aniston: 10 films later

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Sex, beauty and role play at IFFR 2016

Last year, I participated in International Film Festival Rotterdam’s Trainee Programme for Young Film Critics. It was my first visit to a film festival outside the UK and it opened up a world of cinema I’d yet to see at that point. Going back this year has been a very different experience, not least of all for navigating the programme without the structure of jury … Continue reading Sex, beauty and role play at IFFR 2016

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Aniston of the week: Management

This week, we approached another miss-matched couple with trepidation, but we were delighted to see Aniston playing football! Not only that, producing and starring in a flawed but endearing film. FILM: Management YEAR: 2008 DIRECTOR: Stephen Belber CHARACTER NAME AND PROFESSION: Sue, commercial art dealer PLOT SUMMARY: On a work trip to present to potential clients, Sue stays at a motel owned by Trish (Margo … Continue reading Aniston of the week: Management

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Aniston of the week: Along Came Polly

Still wading through those rom-coms, this week we take a look at Aniston’s pairing with ‘everyman’ Ben Stiller. FILM: Along Came Polly DIRECTOR: John Hamburg YEAR: 2004 CHARACTER NAME AND PROFESSION: Polly Prince, waitress and aspiring illustrator PLOT SUMMARY: A man name Reuben Feffer (Ben Stiller) who is a risk-assessment analyst (non-spoiler – his job matches exactly his personality) gets married, but his wife Lisa … Continue reading Aniston of the week: Along Came Polly

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My week in film: Beyond the Lights, Brooklyn and Joy

Viewed this week, three films about female lives that in different ways present the difficulties of balancing a personal and professional life. Gina Prince-Blythewood’s Beyond the Lights went without a cinema release in the UK last year, despite its excellent cast (Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Minnie Driver, Danny Glover) and pertinent plot – it concerns a young R&B singer struggling with fame and self-perception – and critics … Continue reading My week in film: Beyond the Lights, Brooklyn and Joy

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Aniston of the week: Rock Star

In the week that David Bowie and Alan Rickman died and lacking a film in which either starred with Aniston*, what serves as adequately appropriate within our subject’s portfolio is her part in a film that celebrated and parodied rock-star fandom, albeit with mixed results. In love with an LA-based British hair-rock band (based loosely on the story of Judas Priest) a far cry from … Continue reading Aniston of the week: Rock Star

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My Year in Film: 2015 in 21 memorable moments

There’s been more than enough pieces written on the best films of 2015, including two lists (which include Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight, pictured above) to which I already contributed – Sight & Sound and CineVue – so here at Cinematic Investigations, we’ll refrain from adding further to what was considered ‘best’* last year. Instead, this annual review will focus on the complete year’s viewing, including television, films … Continue reading My Year in Film: 2015 in 21 memorable moments

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Aniston of the Week: Wanderlust

After last week’s exploration of perhaps Aniston’s most dramatic role, and in the spirit of the season of jollity, we look at a film that reunites the central duo of The Object of My Affection. A film that teaches us how not to live, in so many ways. Happy Holidays! FILM: Wanderlust DIRECTOR: David Wain YEAR: 2012 CHARACTER NAME AND PROFESSION: Linda Gergenblatt, filmmaker (among … Continue reading Aniston of the Week: Wanderlust

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My week in film: Melissa McCarthy twice plus Tangerine

Pretty soon the viewing habits of this writer will all feature the sight of a Christmas tree, tinsel, presents and/or snow, but for the last week before the festive holidays commence proper, there’s been time to catch some of the year’s lauded comedies and acclaimed dramas. Sean Baker’s Tangerine has been widely praised and discussed since its world premiere at Sundance in January. Shot using … Continue reading My week in film: Melissa McCarthy twice plus Tangerine

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Aniston of the Week: Cake

2015 saw the release of a film that showcased what might be thought of as Jennifer Aniston’s most revealing and dramatic role. Ignoring the middling reviews allows an engagement with an understated and powerful performance and a chance for Aniston to take centre stage. FILM: Cake DIRECTOR: Daniel Barnz YEAR: 2014 CHARACTER NAME AND PROFESSION: Claire Bennett, former lawyer PLOT SUMMARY: Claire is recovering from … Continue reading Aniston of the Week: Cake