Saturday, February 6, 2016
Last night I went to see Hail, Caesar! the new Coen Brothers' film. It's story revolves around Old Hollywood in the early 1950's. We follow Eddie Mannix, head of fictional Capitol Pictures Studios, through his day of putting out fires and stopping any and all embarrassment for the studio. In reality, Eddie Mannix was MGM's "Fixer" who worked closely with heads Louis B. Mayer and publicist Howard Strickling to make sure every scandal involving the studio~ and those working within~ was kept as hushed up as possible at any cost.
George Clooney, Josh Brolin, Channing Tatum, Scarlett Johansson and Tilda Swinton star, as well as many other familiar faces! While Eddie Mannix was a real person, the rest of the cast were fictional characters based on real stars. For those who are familiar with classic films you'll easily recognize the people or persons combined that were portrayed. Wonderful, entertaining and definitely quirky performances by all! My only disappointment was that it was short. I would have loved to have seen more!
This film is one of very few modern films such as Trumbo, The Artist and Hollywoodland to deal with the Golden Age film industry. It was charming and period correct in all aspects; costumes, hair and makeup, cars, language and film equipment. Of course the studio lots and soundstages look exactly the same today, including the well worn mattresses that adorn the walls used for soundproofing. I am absolutely fascinated with the old movie studios and their operations. We're peeking behind the curtain to see what drives the fantasy glamour machine! This film shows the viewer exactly how tight of control management had over their stars, crew and publicity. No matter how creative the industry is, it is still a business, bottom line. I hope you get a chance to see it and would love to know what you think! xo