All this talk with Justine and Cara about the joys of being a redhead (or artificial redhead in Justine’s case) got me thinking about my favorite actresses who share this wonderful hair color of mine. Which then also got me thinking I haven’t done a Fave Five list in far too long, so here we are. There have been many great redheads in cinema, so it’s time to celebrate a few of my favorites. Each and every one of these actresses are both stunningly beautiful and extremely talented. So without further ado, here are my Fave Five redhead actresses.
Honorable Redhead) Emma Stone
I put Emma Stone as an honorable mention redhead because sadly, she’s a natural blonde. However, some of my favorite roles of hers have been with red locks: Superbad, Zombieland, and Easy A, just to name a few. So in that spirit, I’ve included her on this list.
5) Felicia Day
Felicia Day is probably the funniest actress I have ever seen outside of movies. She has numerous web series on her channel as well as Geek and Sundry, including The Guild which she writes, and has appeared on various TV series. She’s huge fan of everything nerdy and a pop culturist (is that a word? it is now). If there is an Aphrodite of Geekdom, it’s Felicia.
4) Alyson Hannigan
I’ve been slowly working my way through How I Met Your Mother, where Alyson Hannigan plays Lily Aldrin, one of the main characters. She is easily one of my favorite characters in the series, and I fully believe it’s because of what Alyson brings to the character. Then of course we can’t forget her role of Michelle in the American Pie series. This one time, at band camp…
3) Jane Levy
Jane Levy may not be in many movies, but she was in the fantastic Suburgatory on ABC, which unfortunately got cancelled after season two. She brought a down-to-Earth element to a town filled with caked make-up and spray tans, really giving off that “girl next door” vibe. I hope she stars in another sitcom soon, because that’s where she really shines.
2) Isla Fisher
As great as Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson were together in Wedding Crashers, Isla Fisher stole every scene she was in. Her deliveries were perfect and I couldn’t stop laughing. Every time I see her name on the cast list, I’m like, “I have to see that.”
1) Amy Adams
Amy Adams can act in just about every type of movie. She’s done drama (The Fighter and American Hustle), comedy (Talladega Nights), children’s (Enchanted), action (Man of Steel) and many, many more. Is there anything she can’t do!?
Who are some of your favorite redheaded actresses?
Fritzi over at Movies Silently is hosting a blogathon that is everything fairy tale. I didn’t hesitate to jump in and review the fairy tale movie I have been wanting to watch for a while: Enchanted. Although it is not a direct adaptation of a specific fairy tale, it contains many of the basic notions of the classics. To read the other entries in this blogathon, head over to Movies Silently by clicking on the Fairy Tale Blogathon banner below. While you’re there, peruse Fritzi’s site a little bit to see someone who appreciates and celebrates silent era of film history.
Giselle (Amy Adams) is on her way to her wedding with Prince Edward (James Marsden) when his evil stepmother, Queen Narissa (Susan Sarandon), transports her from the animated world of Andalasia to New York City in the live-action world. There, she meets Robert Philip (Patrick Dempsey) and his daughter, Morgan (Rachel Convey). After spending some time together, Giselle and Robert begin to change each others view on true love.
Review Enchanted begins in an interesting place. Normally, it would be the end of the fairy tale, when the prince and princess get married. However, here that is just the beginning. It is a good way to get into the mindset of soon-to-be-princess Giselle. So when she gets into the “real world” and meets Robert, there is a clear change between her character in the beginning and her character at the end. Speaking of Giselle, I really like Amy Adams as Giselle. She clearly has a fun time with character and capturing Giselle’s storybook innocence. It is easy to tell this was a Disney movie because it had several tropes from classic Disney fairy tales, including, but not limited to, a poison apple, evil stepmother, and true love’s kiss.
This movie is a stepping stone to where Disney’s more recent movies have been going about the idea of true love. It looks like it will end not how you think, then Disney plays it safe and it ends exactly how you think it will. My favorite part about the film was how out-of-water the characters from Andalasia were in New York City, especially Prince Edward. I had a good time watching Prince Edward try to start singing in the middle of the park, only to get weird looks, exemplifying the difference between our world and theirs. Enchanted is an entertaining romp through a non-traditional Disney fairy tale that parodies the Disney classics.
Cast & Crew
Kevin Lima – Director
Bill Kelly – Writer
Alan Menken – Score Composer
Stephen Schwartz – Lyricist
Amy Adams – Giselle
Patrick Dempsey – Robert Philip
James Marsden – Prince Edward
Timothy Spall – Nathaniel
Idina Menzel – Nancy Tremaine
Rachel Covey – Morgan Philip
Susan Sarandon – Queen Narissa
Julie Andrews – Narrator (voice)
Jeff Bennett – Pip (voice in Andalasia)
Kevin Lima – Pip (voice in New York)
Boxer Micky Ward (Mark Wahlberg) is an up-and-coming boxer who has been living in the shadow of his half-brother, Dicky (Christian Bale), a local boxing hero. With his brother as his trainer, Micky hopes to bounce back from a string of defeats and win a title, a feat his brother was never able to accomplish.
I don’t know what it is about boxer movies, but the last several I have watched have been phenomenal. The Fighter doesn’t break that trend. Easily the strongest part of this movie is its supporting cast. Bale, Amy Adams as Charlene Fleming, and Melissa Leo as Alice Ward were fantastic, Bale especially. I think Bale’s portrayal of Dicky Eklund has been his best performance I have seen. The Fighter‘s message about family and never giving up is powerful and comes across without being sententious. Although this is a movie about boxing, not too much time is spent in the ring, except for the final fight. Any time spent inside the ring is used to progress the relationship, or rift, between Micky and his brother. This lack of time spent on boxing matches allows for a tighter focus on character relationships, driving the movie forward. The Fighter has one of the strongest supporting casts of any movie in recent memory and should not be missed by any movie lover.
The next film in my Original Six is Man of Steel. I wasn’t actually planning on going to see this movie but some co-workers wanted me to organize a company outing after I organized a successful trip to see Iron Man 3. Then after a whole ordeal, the guys who asked me to put the event together didn’t even do. SMH. I’m not real keen on Superman. I think he has a ridiculous powerset and is really hard to relate to. But I tried to go in with an open mind and this was the result.
In order to save their son from Krypton’s imminent destruction, Jor-El (Russell Crowe) and Lara Lor-Van (Ayelet Zurer) send their son, Kal-El (Henry Cavill), to Earth. There, he was found and adopted by the Kents (Kevin Costner and Diane Lane), renamed Clark, and must learn to live in a world who ostracizes and fears him for being different. When General Zod (Michael Shannon), one of the few surviving Kryptonians, threaten Earth, Clark is faced with the choice of protecting his adopted home or siding with his people.
I will get this out of the way up front: I am not a fan of Superman. I don’t particularly care for the character, but I have tried to look at this movie without much bias.
OK, now that I have that out of the way, Man of Steel was rooted much more science-fiction than I was expecting. This made the film more enjoyable for me. Throughout the film, they gave semi-scientific explanations for the why of his powers, without going into too much detail about the how. With the state of superhero films in today’s cinema, it is fairly certain that moviegoers can suspend disbelief and accept a world where people can fly. By not delving too much into the specifics, it allowed the film to keep moving without getting bogged down with the details. But details impeding the story are the least of the film’s story issues.
The pacing of the story felt very wonky to me. Maybe I have come to expect a certain story structure for a hero’s origin movie, but this threw those conventions out the window. The first act was entirely on Krypton, where we learned about why Kal-El was sent to Earth and the events leading up to Krypton’s destruction. This portion was one of my favorites, showing off the sci-fi element of the film and giving the story a better reason for Kal-El sent to Earth besides “Because our planet is about to explode.”
The next act, where we meet a grown up Kal-El who is now know as Clark, is what bothered me most about this film. When I think of an origin story, I expect at some point for the hero to learn how to use their powers while helping people and making mistakes in the meantime. This step was essentially skipped. He was saving people in this part of the film, but only because he was in the right place at the right time. Although it is explained why he isn’t actively helping people, I think this bothers me more because when he finally dons the outfit, he’s just like “BOOM, I know how to do all this perfectly.” Part of what makes origin movies fun for me is the character learning how to use their powers. Personal preference I guess.
Story-wise, I think it was a smart choice to make Zod, a character who can go toe-to-toe with Superman, rather than Lex Luthor, Superman’s most recognizable enemy, the villain of the first film. This allows two things: 1) Shows Superman’s physical strength, and 2) opens the door to have Luthor come into the inevitable sequel and gives Superman the time to show his mental strength as well. Not to mention, with all the destruction at the end, it gives Luthor a primer to turn the people of Earth against Superman, an obstacle he must overcome in the sequel (just spitballing).
It was very evident that Man of Steel was a Zack Snyder film. The fight scenes, particularly the final fight scene, were over-the-top action scenes, very similar to Watchmen or Sucker Punch, but way more grandiose and destructive that could have taken a page from Michael Bay’s playbook. I’m all for outrageous action sequences (part of the reason I enjoy Sucker Punch), but this is too much crazy, even for me.
Henry Cavill does fine as Superman, giving the character the a more serious demeanor than previous incarnations of the character. It is an interesting take on the character because it is so different from past portrayals of Superman. In the comics and previous film appearances, Superman is optimistic and upbeat, but Superman in Man of Steel is almost the complete opposite. He is reluctant to help others, and doing so only if it’s absolutely necessary. I understand they were going for a more “grounded” Superman, but they still could have done so with him still being willing to do what is right, regardless of the situation.
The stand out performances of the movie definitely came from the villains. Shannon was able to portray a certain menacing characteristic that is difficult for many actors. He is also able to make you empathize with him; that Zod’s actions are driven by his desire to do what he feels is in the best interest to ensure the survival of his people. I would have to say my favorite performance, and maybe even the best of the film, was Ayelet Zurer as Faora-Ul. She doesn’t say very much, but her poise and the way she holds herself on screen is enough to convey the strength of her character.
Spoiler alert, Superman wins and Zod loses. Now, as normal as this is for any movie, by all accounts, Zod should not have lost. He was a soldier, bred specifically to be a warrior. Clark, on the other hand, has no fighting experience, going back to my previous point about the origin story. Realistically, Clark should have easily have been beaten when faced with an opponent possessing an identical skill set but has actual fighting experience.
My lack of love for Superman notwithstanding, Man of Steel was a generally enjoyable movie. Despite overly exaggerated action sequences, the heavy science-fiction elements and the great acting by the entire cast added to the entertainment.
Cast & Crew
Zack Snyder – Director
David S. Goyer – Screenplay / Story
Christopher Nolan – Story
Henry Cavill – Clark Kent / Kal-El
Amy Adams – Lois Lane
Michael Shannon – General Zod
Diane Lane – Martha Kent
Russell Crowe – Jor-El
Antje Traue – Faora-Ul
Harry Lennix – General Swanwick
Richard Schiff – Dr. Emil Hamilton
Kevin Costner – Jonathan Kent
Ayelet Zurer – Lara Lor-Van
Laurence Fishburne – Perry White
Dylan Sprayberry – Clark Kent (13 Years)
Cooper Timberline – Clark Kent (9 Years)