Posts Tagged ‘Connie Britton’

Transactional Dynamics

Beatriz at Dinner

Director: Miguel Arteta

Cast: Salma Hayek, John Lithgow, Connie Britton, Jay Duplass, Chloe Sevigny, Amy Landecker, David Warshofsky

Puerto Rican director Miguel Arteta directs Oscar nominee Salma Hayek (Frida) in an insightful comedy of manners Beatriz at Dinner which also stars Connie Britton, Chloe Sevigny and John Lithgow.

It is so refreshing to see Salma Hayek take on a more unconventional role in an arthouse film which had its premiere at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival http://www.sundance.org/festivals/sundance-film-festival/

Beatriz is a struggling massage therapist, a Mexican immigrant to a California who also works at a Cancer centre in Santa Monica. Beatriz loves animals and is deeply distressed when her goat dies, supposedly killed by a neighbour. After spending most of the day at the Cancer centre she has one last appointment: at the home of a wealthy woman Kathy’s whose plush and spacious residence in a gated community overlooking the Pacific in Newport Beach, California, which proves to be Beatriz’s emotional untangling.

Connie Britton from the hit TV show Nashville plays sickly sweet Kathy who initially treats Beatriz as one of her special paid friends even though she is essentially her Mexican massage therapist.

Things go haywire when Beatriz’s old car fades on her and she is left stranded at this gorgeous home where Kathy insists she must stay for a very glamorous dinner party. Caterers have been brought in, the Mexican maid is ready to answer the door and the well-heeled guests include ruthless property developer Doug Strutt wonderfully played with that obnoxious temperament by Oscar nominee John Lithgow (Terms of Endearment).

Among the other guests are Alex played by Jay Duplass and his fabulous wife Shannon played with the cool American chic by Oscar nominee Chloe Sevigny (Boys Don’t Cry).

Kathy’s husband Grant is hosting Doug Strutt to celebrate the ground breaking of a massive property development. As the evening progresses, Beatriz, a cat among the pigeons, sets everyone’s affluent artificiality on edge when she begins questioning their extravagant lifestyles and dubious moral choices.

The scenes between Salma Hayek and John Lithgow are particularly illuminating and form the backbone of a razor sharp film about class and socio-political transactional dynamics. About them and us.

About Beatriz realizing that in corporate America, ruled by a Trump presidency, there exists ruthless businessmen who will stop at nothing to obtain obscene wealth despite the environmental impact of building commercial resorts and hotels in poverty-stricken paradises like Guatemala and parts of Mexico, which have absolutely no benefit to the indigenous communities.

Salma Hayek is sensational in Beatriz at Dinner a return to her dazzling ability to portray eccentric characters like she did as the title role of Frida, director Julie Taymor’s colourful film about the acclaimed Mexican artist and revolutionary Frida Kahlo. Salma Hayek definitely needs to make more arthouse films whereby her unique acting abilities can really shine through.

Beatriz at Dinner is a wonderfully poignant film, a gentle reminder that when seated at a dinner table everyone’s true identity is revealed especially after a three course meal coupled with several glasses of Californian chardonnay.

Despite the contrived plot device of a broken down car, Beatriz at Dinner is an insightful portrayal of contemporary America and receives a film rating of 7.5 out of 10.

 

 

Film Directors & Festivals
Reviews and Awards
Review Calender
August 2018
M T W T F S S
« Jul    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  
  • Film Review: ‘Running for Grace’
    It’s difficult to offer a detailed synopsis of “Running for Grace” without making it sound like something adapted from a young adult novel of recent vintage. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, you understand, but this pleasantly well-crafted period drama actually plays more like a throwback to youth-skewing entertainment of an earlier era. Imagine […]
    Joe Leydon
  • Sarajevo Film Review: ‘Love 1. Dog’
    When an isolated forest ranger rescues a mysterious young woman he finds beaten and unconscious, his long-suppressed emotions surge out of control in Romanian multi-hyphenate Florin Şerban’s third feature “Love 1. Dog.” Set in some indeterminate time during the 20th century, this enigmatic but engrossing drama may look completely different from Şerban’s 2010 Berlinale prize-winner, “If […]
    alissasimon
  • Jeffrey Katzenberg on Oscars’ New Popular Film Category Controversy
    Jeffrey Katzenberg is keeping a safe distance from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ recent controversial shakeup of the Oscars. “I’m wishing them well,” the media mogul told Variety on Thursday at the Motion Picture & Television Fund’s NextGen party at Paramount Studios. “I love the Academy. I want it to work out […]
    marcmalkin
  • Fall Movie Preview 2018: ‘Venom,’ ‘A Star Is Born,’ ‘Halloween’
    With a Harry Potter follow-up, a Spider-Man spinoff, and a new take on “Mary Poppins” among the bounty of movies opening in theaters, the rest of 2018 has plenty to offer filmgoers. “A Simple Favor” Release Date: Sept. 14 Stars: Anna Kendrick, Blake Lively, Henry Golding Why we want to see it: The gossip girl […]
    Christi Carras
  • TV News Roundup: Disney Channel Announces ‘Coop & Cami’ Premiere Date
    In today’s roundup, Disney Channel announces October premiere dates for two new shows, and the “Clear the Shelters Day” initiative aims to encourage pet adoption.  DATES Disney Channel is also rolling out the new family sitcom “Coop & Cami Ask the World” on Friday, Oct. 12. at 8:30 p.m. ET/PT. The live-action comedy follows middle-school siblings Coop (Dakota Lotus) and Cami […]
    Rachel Yang
  • Article
    Over the past few years, several low-cost carriers have stepped up to offer competition and cheapest prices to customers looking to cut down their monthly bills. Tags: 2gmhass90