Mulholland Drive : LUSENET : Unk's Troll-free Private Saloon : One Thread

Hi guys -- good to see y'all again.

Has anyone here seen Mulholland Drive? It's the most unforgettable film I've ever seen -- and has IMHO the greatest performance by an actress (Naomi Watts) ever put to celluloid.

Any interpretations are welcome.

(Hope you're doin' well, Cherri)

-- Eve (, December 07, 2001


Welcome back Eve. Thanks for the tip. I haven't deen it but now I will. Has anyone seen the new Coen brothers film? (I can't remember the name)

-- (, December 07, 2001.

Thanks, Lars. Hope all's well with you. The last Coen brothers film I saw was "Brother, Where Art Thou?" -- which was very entertaining and unpredictable -- like most of their stuff. Haven't seen any newer ones, though.

Alas -- it may be too late in most areas to catch Mulholland Drive in the theatres, and coupled with the fact that distribution was limited to begin with, it might be very difficult to find 'till it comes out on video/DVD.

-- Eve (, December 07, 2001.

Latest Coen Bros. movie is The Man Who Wasn't There. It stars Billy Bob Thornton as a barber.

-- Little Nipper (, December 07, 2001.

Yeah, that's the one. I'm a Billy Bob fan as well as a Coen Brothers fan. Have you seen it LN? Anyone? For some reason it's in black and white.

-- (, December 07, 2001.


BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. - The orange food can be explained. The dungeon in the house can be explained. The vials filled with blood can be explained. Even the gift from his loving wife of a cemetery plot can be explained.

In fact, Billy Bob Thornton insists that almost everything weird or crazy that you have read about his life with actress Angelina Jolie can be explained. Not that he feels anything needs to be explained.

"They don't say bad things about us," a laid-back, soft-spoken Thornton said recently in a luxury hotel suite only a few blocks from the Beverly Hills home he shares with his Oscar-winning wife. He made the short jaunt to discuss his role as a barber gone bad in the Coen brothers' film noir "The Man Who Wasn't There," which opens Friday.

"They only write how crazy we are about each other and that we're weirdoes. I don't care if they write that stuff. Personally, I don't think we're weird. I think we're pretty normal people."

For the record, Thornton, 46, said he doesn't eat only orange food. "I happen to eat a papaya each day because it's good for digestion. It's orange, so I guess that's how that got started."

The so-called dungeon, he explained, is a recording studio in the basement. He calls it "The Cave."

The rumor that they dangle vials of each other's blood around their necks is true. "It's a display of eternal love," he said.

And, his wife's gift of a grave plot is not as bizarre as it sounds. "It's next to my brother, who died in 1988," he said. "She knew how much it means to me to be buried next to my brother."

See, it all can be explained. It's not weird at all.

And what about revealing to a television reporter on the red carpet of a nationally televised awards show that he and his wife had just made love in the limousine on the way to the show?

"Oh, I do things like that just to mess with them because they won't shut up," Thornton said with a sly grin. "It's not that big a deal."

Thornton said he is able to be playful with the media because he doesn't take this whole movie star thing so seriously.

"Angie's the famous one," he says with a straight face. "I'm just the actor guy standing next to her. I'm not really in Hollywood. I don't go to Hollywood parties or call Tom Hanks to invite him over to the house for a big dinner party. I hang out with regular people and do regular things. I'd rather go to a record store and search through the bins than go to a premiere."

In some respects, Thornton is a lot like his character Ed Crane in "The Man Who Wasn't There," a quiet and painfully unassuming barber who gets tangled in a twisted murder plot.

Set in 1949 in a small Northern California town and shot intentionally in black and white, the film also stars Frances McDormand and James Gandolfini.

"I think we all feel like Ed Crane sometimes," the actor said. "He's the odd man out. He wonders where he fits in the world and where he's going. Heck, I feel like Ed Crane every day of my life."

Thornton credits his impoverished Arkansas upbringing for giving him the strength and tenacity to keep from quitting show business before his career finally got started in his late 30s.

"We were pretty darn poor, and that not only has made me appreciate my success even more but it lessens the pain when I'm not the guy on the magazine cover or the one who makes the big superstar money. I just feel lucky to wake up every day.

"Besides, by growing up so poor, I was able to stick it out during all those lean years. I never got disenchanted with my career. How could I get disenchanted? What was I going back to? It's not like I could go back to the cushy life that I left. It's not like I would stop starving if I went back to Arkansas. It was either stay here or go back to work for the highway department shoveling asphalt."

Thornton married early, and then got married three more times before meeting wife No.5, Jolie, on the set of "Pushing Tin."

If his marriages weren't going well, his career was going even worse. He played a character named Billy Bob on the TV sitcom "Hearts Afire" and appeared in the forgettable 1989 film "Chopper Chicks in Zombietown."

But he also discovered back then that he could write. With partner Tom Epperson, a childhood friend from Arkansas, he wrote the screenplay for the well-received "One False Move," in which Thornton also starred.

Three years later, in 1996, Thornton finally realized his full Hollywood potential by writing, directing and starring in "Sling Blade," for which he won an Oscar for his screenplay.

He also was nominated for an acting Oscar but lost to Australian Geoffrey Rush for "Shine."

"Yes, I was disappointed that I didn't win for acting," he said. "I didn't realize until later how political it was."

Thornton's acting was singled out again in the 1998 Sam Raimi- directed film "A Simple Plan" (another Oscar nomination), and critics have been searching for new adjectives in his two most recent efforts, "Bandits," in which he plays a motor-mouth hypochondriac, and "The Man Who Wasn't There."

"I do feel the buzz," he said with only the slightest display of ego. "I feel people are starting to notice my acting now. Don't get me wrong; I got good notices in `Sling Blade' and `A Simple Plan,' but they were too spread apart. With these two movies coming so close together, people are realizing that I play very different characters in all my movies.

"I feel I have a lot to offer in acting right now. People think I prefer writing and directing" (he also directed "All the Pretty Horses"), "but quite frankly, I think writing and directing take a secondary role to my acting.

"And the kind of acting I want to do is the kind of acting I did in this new movie. When I look back on my career, I'm not going to regret that I didn't make `Pearl Harbor.' OK, I did make `Armageddon,' but that was the one blemish on my report card. My agent at the time convinced me to do it because he said my career was going into the toilet.

"But I was naive back then. I believed that I had to do my one big action movie, and now I've done my one big action movie. I don't have to do it again. I only want to work in good movies with people like the Coens and Martin Scorsese. I want to be a real actor. I don't care about being a movie star."

-- (thinks billybob's@big.jerk), December 07, 2001.

I forgot ungrateful sore loser, and egomaniac.

I LOVED Armageddon! And so did everyone I know.

-- (billybob's@big.jerk), December 07, 2001.

Haven't yet seen The Man Who Wasn't There. I probably will, now or in video (seeing movies is not a big priority most months). I do like what the Coens produce. I thought The Big Lebowski was mighty funny stuff - better than Fargo, even. I even got most of the "in" jokes about Faulkner and Cliff Odets in Barton Fink, but that doesn't mean everyone would enjoy it the same way.

Judging from the reviews, this latest one is not everyone's cup of tea. I'd guess that if you like everything by the the Coens, you'll like this, too.

-- Little Nipper (, December 07, 2001.

I think William H. Macy's performance in Fargo was a riveting, immensely entertaining piece of controlled insanity -- watching him heading ever more closely to the abyss is always a nerve-racking experience. But I savor his performance (and Steve Buscemi's --love that guy) every time I watch. Fargo's one of the very, very few films that holds up well with me for repeat viewings.

-- Eve (, December 09, 2001.

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