The Congress’s imperfections will not go unnoticed. Some of the movie’s more ambitious antics betray the fraying margins of a somewhat unfocused scope — when a film’s principal conquest is to channel the ubiquitous pains of simply being, you’ll have to expect a few loose ends or ruffled patches. Palpable missteps notwithstanding, we never lose view of the heart of the The Congress, a creative masterpiece with one ideological giant of a mission.
On the surface, The Congress is specifically about show business and the vanities inherent therein. Robin Wright plays an alternate version of herself with an ailing son (Kodi Smit-McPhee), ostensibly no House of Cards to speak for (though all of her classics are in check — Forrest Gump and The Princess Bride are cited a handful of times), and a divisive deal on the table from super-studio MiraMount: sell her image for use in whatever productions they might deem a computer generated Robin Wright apropos, thus completely relinquishing her personal likeness to the control of the industry and agreeing never to act again.
One step deeper, and it’s about youth. Vanity, ageism, mortality, and all the ugly facets that play into our culture’s obsession with staying under 40. But in earnest, these (admittedly grand) themes act as courier into the film’s far vaster intentions. After agreeing to the deal in order to fund her son’s cryptic medical expenses, Wright visits a veritable afterlife in the form of a psychedelic cartoon, one designed to effectively “replace” life on Earth.
There, the questions and concerns jump to true majesty. The film tackles the theme of heartache with such bite and dynamism that you’ll happily trudge through its technical dysfunctions or narrative slip-ups in order to be a part of everything it has to say, and of the magnetic world it is building.
It’s hard to identify which aspect of The Congress is more exciting: its colossal essay about the crevices of human sadness or the explosion of visual and conceptual imagination that it builds in Wright’s second act cartoon journey. Thankfully, they work in perfect harmony, rendering The Congress one of the most wonderful, important, and wholly original pieces you’ll see this or any year.
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Today, August 29th, 2014 marks the 21st birthday of Liam Payne. Daddy Direction can legally drink in America! An important thing for us grown-up Directioners. To celebrate the day, we’ve got 21 fun-facts about Liam. Not that boring stuff, like his zodiac sign (Virgo) or his middle name (James, just like his band-mate Niall Horan).
1. He is afraid of spoons. It’s not that weird, it’s kind of cute.
2. Of the band, he’s the only one who comes to work with his hair done. The other band members show up with their hair all over the place, but he won’t leave his house without doing his hair.
3. If he wasn’t a singer, he would make a fabulous journalist:
He might have been drunk, but he actually asked all the questions a fan wanted to know after watching the Brit Awards.
4. His favorite film is the Toy Story trilogy.
5. Liam once told TOTP that he had the best dance moves and he was, “The king of the dance floor!” With his signature 1-2-3 flick. Recognize those moves anywhere?
6. Liam’s dream job, aside from the one he is currently living as a pop-star, is a fire fighter.
7. He once had his underwear stolen (and then later worn) by a fan.
8. If Liam could invent an ice cream flavor, it would be “Krispy Kreme Donut.”
9. He once confessed to owning a pair of pink hair straighteners. We can see the evidence of that here.
10. He has said that Justin Timberlake is one of his biggest inspirations. He also sang “Cry Me A River,” at his 2010 X Factor audition. Good thing too, since look where that got him!
11. Once, he was asked what food he would be, he responded: “I’d be 7 bananas because it’s too much potassium and that’s dangerous.” Gotta love a bad boy.
12. His favorite color is still purple (had to include this because it’s adorable).
13. Liam once had no idea what YOLO and DTF stood for, so he guessed “Yummy Oreos Love Origami” and “Dedicated To Fans.” Better abbreviations, in my honest opinion.
14. Liam wishes he’d written the song “99 Problems,” by Jay Z. We wonder why?
15. All of his band-mates have said he’s got the best abs in the group. We cannot deny this.
16. Liam has a man-crush on Twilight star Taylor Lautner.
17. He has two pet turtles named Boris and Archimedes. He also has an adorable little husky named Loki (with his ex-girlfriend Danielle Peazer).
liam w/ loki is the cutest thing ever #liampayne pic.twitter.com/QM04PgaUru
— Hana (@hana1999hana) August 26, 2014
18. One time Liam was left behind and when the tour bus took off, he started running after it while waving his arms. The rest of the band mistook him for a fan at first.
19. Until he was 19-years-old, Liam suffered from kidney problems (1 scarred and dysfunctional kidney) that kept him from drinking and he had to lead a very careful life. Luckily, he’s all healthy now and can legally drink with his American fans!
20. The one person guaranteed to make him laugh is band-made, Louis Tomlinson! “Even if I’m in a situation where I’m mad at him, the person that can make me smile is Louis. Whatever happens he’ll make me laugh about something.”
21. One of Liam’s tattoos (the feather and lyrics) is dedicated to his Nan.
Happy Birthday Liam! We hope you have an awesome day and get to relax a little, if that's possible to do in the middle of a world tour.
Which is your favorite Liam fact? Tweet us yours along with the hashtag #Happy21stBirthdayLiam!
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Lena Dunham and Kate Mara were stunned when a large cardboard backdrop fell on them during a premiere at the Venice Film Festival on Thursday (28Aug14).
The TV stars were in the Italian city to represent fashion house Miu Miu and its short film series Women's Tales at the festival, and they were posing on the red carpet when the cardboard backdrop fell down and hit them on the head.
Mara joked about the incident on Twitter.com, posting an image of her and the Girls actress giggling as men rushed to restore the poster to its original position. She writes, "Best red carpet ever w/ (with) @lenadunham @MIUMIUofficial when a poster fell on our heads while we tried to be sultry..." and Dunham adds, "Unlike most things, this was truly SHOCKING."
Kirsten Dunst, Dakota Fanning and British actress Felicity Jones were also at the event. The film festival runs until 6 September (14).
Nude photos of 5 Seconds Of Summer bassist Calum Hood have leaked online.
The 18-year-old Australian reportedly took a risque video of himself on his cell phone and sent it to a mystery contact via messaging service Snapchat. The recipient recorded images from the footage and uploaded them onto the Internet.
Hood cannot be identified in the pictures because his head is not featured, but he decided to come clean and joke about the incident on Twitter.com on Thursday (28Aug14), writing, "Least ya know what it looks like now (sic)... I'm still just a teenage kid learning from mistakes."
Rockers Interpol are no longer searching for a full-time bassist because frontman Paul Banks has taken on the role. Bassist and founding member Carlos Dengler left the group in 2010 shortly after they completed their fourth record and his replacement Dave Pajo quit after a year.
Brad Traux has been playing bass during live shows but the band is not looking for a permanent replacement because Banks has taken on the instrument for their upcoming fifth album.
Guitarist Daniel Kessler tells Britain's The Sun newspaper, "We didn't have a discussion about what we were going to do... Then after the second rehearsal Paul was like, 'Maybe I should pick up the bass', cos it helps to anchor the songs... I was like, 'cool', and that was the first time we spoke about what we were going to do about the bass parts.
"By the end of the second or third rehearsal we'd made an incredible start to a couple of new songs... Paul surprised me with how excellent he is on the bass... we just ran with it and didn't have any conversations about it... Once those foundations happened, we found our way and we thought, 'Why would we look to other possibilities when this is working so well?'"
Banks admits they no longer talk to Dengler, telling Britain's The Guardian newspaper, "Yeah I call him an a**hole but I call my friends a**holes. I love Carlos, we all love Carlos. But I don't think he wants to see me."
The band's fifth album, titled El Pintor, is scheduled for release on 9 September (14).
British actress Keira Knightley has shed her squeaky clean image by baring her breasts for a racy magazine photoshoot.
The Pirates of the Caribbean actress stripped off for the provocative image in fashion magazine Interview, wearing only black lace gloves and black trousers while sporting soaking wet hair and a belly button piercing.
The 29 year old was pictured by fashion photographer Patrick Demarchelier for the magazine's September 2014 issue, which also includes risque shoots featuring Nicole Kidman and Naomi Campbell. Knightley is no stranger to baring her breasts on film - she went topless in movies including The Jacket and A Dangerous Method. She also publicly criticised a promo poster for her film King Arthur in 2004 as artists had digitally enhanced the size of her chest.
LMFAO star Redfoo is convinced a nightclub reveller who threw a glass at his head in an unprovoked attack was jealous because the pop star was surrounded by sexy girls.
The rapper, real name Stefan Gordy, received treatment at the scene for a cut to his head following the incident in Australia, but the injury did not require stitches. He had been attacked during a bash in a private area of the Golden Sheaf Hotel in Sydney, and Redfoo is convinced his assailant was envious because he was partying the night away with a group of beautiful women.
Speaking after the incident in the early hours of Wednesday (27Aug14), he says, "We were about to round up the party and take it home to the afterparty. All of a sudden out of nowhere a glass hits me in the head and I look over to see who might have thrown it and I see kind of a dodgy fella trying to flee the scene. "I looked down at my hand and there was blood all over my hand. There's blood on the dance floor... I was appalled. It was unbelievable to me that this would happen. I lost my mind. The whole side of my face was bloody. It was unbelievable, like I'd been hit in the head with an axe... "I can't help it if the girls are gyrating their hips towards me and taking selfies and giggling and laughing and it seems like he might have been upset with that and didn't like what he saw. The first thing I would say to him is 'Bro, I've got to understand why did you do it. I want him to just tell me the truth. If you are a man and jealous, just say it'."
However, Redfoo is adamant he still loves life in Australia, adding, "This isn't the Aussie way, I can guarantee that. This is the most loving country I've been to ever, and by no means am I letting this get to me. I have only positive feelings about Australia and the people."
A 21-year-old man is due in court on 24 September (14) charged with malicious wounding in connection with the incident.
Hugh Jackman's actress wife Deborra-Lee Furness' campaign to overhaul adoption laws in her native Australia will expose some children to a greater risk of abuse and trafficking, according to experts. The Jindabyne star has been a vocal supporter of the Adopt Change organisation, and this week (beg25Aug14) she praised the country's Prime Minister Tony Abbott for holding talks with campaign staff.
However, a group of child protection experts has now warned politicians that a change in the adoption laws could leave the door wide open to abusers.
The panel told an Australian parliamentary committee the proposals will make the adoption process "vulnerable to reduced standards for the protection of children, and greater risks of malpractice".
Jason London and his estranged wife are suing the owners of an Arizona bar where the actor was embroiled in a fight last year (13).
The Dazed and Confused star was charged with assault after he allegedly punched a bouncer inside the venue, but he later struck a plea deal by admitting to a charge of disorderly conduct and attending an alcohol treatment program. He was left battered and bruised in the brawl and had to undergo a number of operations, including facial reconstruction.
His wife Sofia Karstens filed for divorce from the actor in February (14) but they have now teamed up to jointly sue the Martini Ranch bar for the injuries London sustained, claiming the incident destroyed their marriage as London was unable to perform household duties for months, according to TMZ.com. The former couple is suing for unspecified damages.
Comedienne Joan Rivers has reportedly been placed in a medically-induced coma after suffering cardiac and respiratory failure during a medical procedure on Thursday (28Aug14).
Rivers was getting her vocal cords checked at a clinic in New York when she started fighting for breath. She was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital and placed in a coma as members of her family were alerted to her condition.
The New York Daily News reports doctors will take the 81 year old out of the coma this weekend (30-31Aug14) and assess any damage.
Her aide Graham Reed told the Daily News, "She’s not conscious, but she’s stable." Initial reports suggested Rivers was in a critical condition. A spokesman for the hospital has released a brief statement, which reads: "Her family wants to thank everybody for their outpouring of love and support. We will provide an update on her condition as it becomes available."
The comedienne's daughter Melissa has reportedly flown to New York from her home in California to be at her mother's bedside.