Posts Tagged ‘Richard Armitage’

I don’t see many movies in the theater, unless Richard Armitage is in the cast. I watch most movies online. However, I’m writing a novel with a hero with a southern accent and I thought a few hours of Matthew McConaughey would be useful, so I went to see Interstellar.

Wow. This was a fun movie and definitely worth watching in IMAX. There were about five minutes in the middle when I was getting bored with Anne Hathaway making faces behind an astronaut mask and the spaceship spinning, but then the plot picked up and I was fine. There were interesting family relationships and interactions and a hint of romance, which nicely balanced the space travel/adventure/fighting scenes. I liked the music, too. Sometimes it is nice to escape into a different, exciting world. And after seeing this movie, I no longer think my house is dusty.

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Here’s my review of Into the Storm, with SPOILERS. Read at your own risk.

I thoroughly enjoyed Into the Storm – it was a lot of fun – but somewhere in the final editing, they lost two important lines:

At the end, when Gary is standing with his sons, talking about how important family is, and how glad they are to still be alive, Trey is supposed to say, “And Dad, what about you and that hot meteorologist?”

Then Gary is supposed to make an exasperated/embarrassed face and say roughly, “I’ll think about it.”

That’s it. Those are the two lines that in the excitement of making the tornados look fantastic didn’t survive. Two lines that would have changed a good movie into a much better movie.

Why? Because there is nothing more romantic than someone saving your life.

From RichardArmitageNet.com

From RichardArmitageNet.com

Now, I appreciate the fact that Todd Garner and Steven Quale didn’t turn Into the Storm into one of those cheesy films where a wise-cracking macho hero manages to save the world and make out with a woman he just met an hour before when in real life people would merely be trying to stay alive. (Not that I don’t watch those movies – I do, and I often like them, but I don’t consider them realistic) That’s one thing I liked about Into the Storm – the naturalness and normality of the characters. I’m married to a high school Calculus teacher and Richard Armitage got the overworked, exasperated dad just right. Sometimes he was painfully awkward, like a real person.

However, if they had added a hint of romance at the end, it would have made me much happier. Just as a pinch of salt can improve a meal. I think in real life, after the storm ended, and everyone was cleaning up the mess, both those single parents would think, “Wow, he/she was great” and at some point, they would think, “Hey, I wonder if . . .” Because as much as love for their children was their primary motivation, sometimes they are going to feel lonely and think about finding a life partner. And who better than someone brave and resourceful that you can count on in times of trouble?

Script-wise, it would have worked to have Trey bring it up, because he was already playing matchmaker for his brother.

And with a hint of romance, the film would have appealed to a broader audience – the teenagers got the young love hope with Donnie and Kaitlyn, and the older generation would have gotten a more mature love hope with Gary and Allison.

It would have increased the percentage of women who would watch the movie multiple times, trying to analyze if and when the characters were possibly attracted to each other. Fan sites would spend days arguing whether the relationship would work.

I’ve only seen the movie once so far, but I plan to watch it again to see if I missed any other lines – such as – Did Allison ever thank Gary for saving her life when they first met?

And at the end, was there any acknowledgement between the two of them that they survived and that they both helped each other, or did she just run off to talk to her daughter on the phone? It happened so fast, I don’t remember. I expected something, even if it was just a significant look of “Wow. Thank God.” I understand her desire to talk to her daughter, but her daughter was safe and it seemed a little rude that there wasn’t an acknowledgment of what they’ll all just gone through. I’ll admit, I felt a little emotionally cheated at the time, but then there were other interesting things on screen, so I didn’t think about it until later.

And if the producer/director didn’t want it to be in the film itself, those two lines could have been an extra scene put in the credits, like an outtake. Something that Trey was filming. Like a week later when Gary was eating breakfast or cleaning up debris. “Hey, Dad . . . .” And Gary could put his hand over the lens. Or even better, have Gary running the camera (a first), trying to interview Trey . . .

However, this is my editor-brain kicking into overdrive. Since I’m a writer, I often mentally rewrite and edit books I read and movies I watch. Sometime I’ll pontificate about my ideas for a fourth Mad Max film, what was wrong with Star Wars episode 6, and where I’d trim Avatar. And why the titanium wedding ring saved the Abyss. Ah, Ed Harris with a blue hand throughout the film. It worked.

Bottom line? I liked Into the Storm. I smiled and gasped and had a great time. It was definitely worth the cost of admission rather than waiting to see it on DVD or Netflix.

But I would have liked it more with a pinch of romance.

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I’m looking forward to Into the Storm this week, and one thing lead to another in my YouTube viewing. I had forgotten some of my favorite parts of BBC Robin Hood. I have never been drawn to the bad boy. Thematically, I prefer geeky professors, guys next door and powerful business men. But Guy of Gisborne may be an exception.

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From richardarmitagenet.com

From richardarmitagenet.com

I’m a woman who likes brooding men in cravats, so it’s not surprising that I enjoyed North and South, but I really really liked it  – to the point that it rivaled my passion for the 1995 Pride and Prejudice.

I watched all four hours of North and South four times in the first week.   I remember sneaking it in while I was folding laundry, etc., hoping that no one else in the family would realize how often I was watching it.   I couldn’t get enough – and the main reason was Richard Armitage and his portrayal of John Thornton.

Richard Armitage is an attractive man, but I didn’t think he was all that handsome until episode 3, when he told his mother that Margaret refused his marriage proposal.  At that moment, he became fascinatingly beautiful to me, and he has remained fascinating for eight years.  But why do I still like him so much?

I’ve thought about that this past week as others have posted their “I Saw Something Fine” posts on the Richard Armitage Flash Fan Event.

He is fascinating because his portrayal of male thought and emotion is so complex.  With his micro expressions, he makes his characters seem real.  He makes me feel their pain, their fear, their joy.  The good characters have hints of bad, and the bad characters have hints of good.  I find myself caring about them, even when I don’t always like them or the choices they make. (I still don’t understand the end of Robin Hood Season 2.  Personally I think Gisborne should have drugged Marion and forced her to marry him.  That would have made an interesting Season 3, but since I write quirky sweet romances rather than fanfic, I don’t think it’s going to show up as a subplot.)

But it isn’t just his technical skills that make Richard so compelling.  I have admired the acting style of other actors and not followed their careers so closely.  With Richard, I read and watched his interviews and found I liked the man behind the roles.  He cares about his craft and takes his work seriously.  Over time, I’ve enjoyed his cheerful good humor, his politeness and respect for others.  He seems like the kind of guy who would be fun to work with, a good friend, and ultimately, good to fall in love with.  (As a very happily married woman, I wish him all the best in that department).

In some ways, he reminds me of Jimmy Stewart.  Whenever I see a photograph of Jimmy Stewart, I smile because I like the man and the actor.  It’s the same with Richard Armitage.  I hope he has a long and happy career, making many more movies and television shows.

And if he could narrate a few more books, I’d appreciate that, too.  I could write another essay on “I Heard Something Fine.”

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My favorite living actor wrote a Christmas letter again to his followers.DOS1-02.jpg

Screencap source:  richardarmitagenet.com

Thank you for the warm sentiments and good wishes.  I also believe that happiness comes from helping others.

Thank you for the hours of enjoyment your work has given me.

Merry Christmas.


Link to Richard Armitage’s Christmas message:  richardarmitageonline.com

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For some reason I’m quoting Little John from the BBC Robin Hood series.

I just listened to Ed Sheeran‘s song that is going to be at the end of the second Hobbit movie:  The Desolation of Smaug.  Wow.  I like it.  A lot.  I liked the music in the first movie, but I really like this song.  Of course, I also like the clips from the movie, too.  Enjoy.

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Recently Richard Armitage spoke about the creative process of acting with PopcornTaxi here.   Some of his comments rang true to me because his acting process appears similar to my writing process.

“RA: We were always told, ‘don’t bring the character to you, go to the character’. I always preferred leaving lots of myself outside the room and exploring the world through the eyes and the body and the mind of a different person who is ultimately better than you are. Even if they’re a mass murderer, they’re infinitely more interesting than you are. People talk about The Method, or whatever. I don’t think I’m a Method actor. I have a method but I don’t believe you have to be a mass murderer to play a mass murderer.

“I don’t believe I have to be a dwarf who gets dragon sickness to play Thorin Oakenshield. But I’m fascinated to see what his world looks like or what the world looks like through his eyes.”

from richardarmitagenet.com

from richardarmitagenet.com

I often joke that all my characters are just different versions of myself.  But that’s not accurate.  They are how my life might be if I were someone else and certain things happened.

What if I were  the single parent of quintuplet babies?  The Baby Tree

What if my ex-husband came back into my life when I was engaged to someone else?   Her Ex Next Door

What if I were pregnant and couldn’t remember ever sleeping with anyone?  Forgotten Honeymoon

Like Richard Armitage, I am fascinated by what the world looks like through these characters’ eyes.

Recently some friends read The M-word and I was  invited to speak at their book club.  One reader said archly, “After reading this, don’t you feel that you know Beverly and her husband a whole lot better?”  Everyone laughed.  I don’t think they believed me when I said that my husband was NOT Marius.

Granted, there may be bits of my life experience in my writing — I don’t know how to avoid that completely.  But ultimately my writing is a creative process based on my imagination and my interpretation of human nature — good and bad.   I find the entire process exhilarating.

Which brings me back to Richard Armitage.

The continuation of his earlier statement is this:

“RA:  And it does give you courage to do that because you get given a bunch of lines to say that I would never say. It’s liberating. And then you take it off at the end of the day and I slump around the streets with my shoulders hunched, back to boring old me. It’s great!”

It is great.

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