Annette Bening (born 29.5.1958)
Annette Bening is an American actress, well-known for her roles in Bugsy and American Beauty.
Childhood & Early Acting Career: Annette Bening was born in Topeka, Kansas, to Shirley and Arnett Grant Bening. Her mother was a church singer and her father was an insurance salesman. The family later moved to Wichita and then San Diego.
Annette began acting at junior high school, where she played the lead role in The Sound of Music. She went on to study drama at Patrick Henry High School.
After graduating from high school, Bening attended San Diego Mesa College before undertaking a degree in theatre arts at San Francisco State University. She then joined the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco. It was here that she laid the groundwork for her reputation as a talented stage actress.
Acting Career: After leaving San Francisco, Annette Bening moved to New York, where her stage debut came off-Broadway with the Second Stage Theatre, playing Holly Dancer in Coastal Disturbances, alongside Tim Daly. Despite having gained herself a formidable reputation for her stage acting, it took some time for her film career to develop.
In 1986, Bening made her TV debut in the TV movie, Manhunt for Claude Dallas. Two years later, her film debut came with an appearance in The Great Outdoors, starring Dan Aykroyd and John Candy. The next year, she starred in Valmont with Colin Firth.
Annette Bening started off the 1990s with a role in The Grifters. The film was directed by Stephen Frears and starred Angelica Houston and John Cusack. Her performance was highly revered and led to her landing a role in Bugsy, with Warren Beatty, Harvey Keitel and Ben Kingsley.
Originally, Annette Bening was selected to play the role of Catwoman in Batman Returns but had to relinquish the role to Michelle Pfeiffer.
In 1994, Bening starred opposite Katharine Hepburn in Love Affair. She then received $3 million to play the role of Elise Kraft/Sharon Bridger in The Siege, alongside Bruce Willis and Denzel Washington.
One of Bening's key roles was in 1999's American Beauty. The film starred Kevin Spacey, Mena Suvari and Thora Birch. Directed by Sam Mendes, American Beauty was a hit with critics and cinema-goers alike and won five Academy Awards.
Mike Nichols has cast Annette Bening in three of his movies: Postcards From the Edge (written by Carrie Fisher and starring Shirley MacLaine and Dennis Quaid), Regarding Henry (with Harrison Ford) and What Planet Are You From? (with John Goodman, Garry Shandling and Greg Kinnear).
In 2006, Annette Bening starred in Running with Scissors, alongside Ryan Murphy and Joseph Fiennes.
Regaining the critical acclaim that she achieved for American Beauty, Bening wowed the critics with her performance in 2010's The Kids Are All Right. The film, a comedy-drama, also starred Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo.
Personal Life: Following the breakdown of her first marriage to the choreographer J. Steven White, Annette Bening married the actor Warren Beatty, with whom she has four children.
Based on a true story, this stylishly produced British drama centres around two superbly involving characters whose real-life journey doesn't fit neatly into the usual formula. So the film continually surprises us with little details as it recounts a series of events over the course of about three years. Director Paul McGuigan (Sherlock) and writer Matt Greenhalgh (Nowhere Boy) cleverly keep the tone light with big emotional moments all along the way. And it's also a fascinating look at one of Hollywood's more uncomfortable truths.
It opens in 1981 Liverpool, when Oscar-winning actress Gloria Grahame (Annette Bening) collapses while preparing to perform in a play. In need of a place to recuperate, she reaches out to her much younger ex Peter (Jamie Bell), and asks to move in with his parents (Julie Walters and Kenneth Cranham). Seeing Gloria again, Peter takes a trip through his memories of their romance over the previous three years. They met in London when he was an aspiring actor, and he followed her to New York and Los Angeles before their relationship hit the rocks. He always wondered why she dumped him, but now he's starting to understand.
The way the flashbacks are woven into the main narrative is ingenious, as Peter literally walks into the past. This offers some powerful glimpses of the interconnections between them. It's not quite so necessary to eventually cut to Gloria's side of the story, although at least that offers a strikingly emotional final piece to the puzzle. Bening enjoyably makes Gloria a vain diva whose underlying insecurity makes her very likeable. Since she refuses to act her age, the gap between her and Peter never feels like an issue. And Bening develops terrific chemistry with Bell, who brings a beautifully understated rawness to Peter that's strikingly truthful. Bell gives a riveting performance that's never remotely obvious. And it's also terrific to see him reunite with Walters 17 years after Billy Elliot.
Continue reading: Film Stars Don't Die In Liverpool Review
Annette Bening and Warren Beatty seen at the New York Stage and Film Winter Gala, this year the gala honoured Annette Bening and David Rockwell. Held at The Plaza Hotel, New York, United States - Sunday 4th December 2016
Annette Bening seen alone and with Warren Beatty at a Screening Of A24's '20th Century Women', the event was also a tribute to Annette held at TCL Chinese Theatre, Hollywood, California, United States - Thursday 17th November 2016
Annette Bening posing alone and with Elle Fanning, Mike Mills and Warren Beatty at the 54th New York Film Festival premiere of '20th Century Women', New York, United States - Saturday 8th October 2016
Annette Bening poses alone and with husband Warren Beatty at the San Diego International Film Festival's Night of the Stars Tribute sponsored by Variety held at La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, California, United States - Thursday 29th September 2016
Middle-aged romances are rare on the big screen, so it's frustrating that this one is so badly compromised by a series of contrived plot points. One gimmick wasn't enough for director-cowriter Arie Posin, who continually twists and turns the events in ways that are both bizarre and melodramatic. Within this, Annette Bening and Ed Harris still manage to create intriguing characters, but it becomes increasingly difficult to care when the screenwriters clearly have trouble on their minds.
It opens as Nikki (Bening) is flooded with memories of her husband Garret (Harris), who died five years ago while they were vacationing in Mexico. Now that their daughter (Jess Weixler) is moving away from home in Los Angeles to attend college in Seattle, Nikki has time to think. Although she wants to remain friends and nothing more with her lusty widowed neighbour Roger (Robin Williams), an old friend of Garret's. Then Nikki meets a man who looks uncannily like Garret and begins stalking him. Tom (Harris again) is an art professor, and when Nikki gets up the nerve to talk to him, she knows she's going to a very odd place.
The film is like a variation on Vertigo, as Posin plays up the freaky doppelganger storyline to add a heightened sense of dangerous tension. But it's not so easy for the audience to accept such a set-up, when one honest conversation would solve everything. Instead, Nikki lies to everyone she knows, hides Tom from them and then lies to Tom as well. It's difficult to take a romance seriously when it has such a fraudulent foundation. Thankfully, Bening gives Nikki a fragility that makes her sympathetic, and her interaction with Harris bristles with unexpected connections because they are experiencing their blossoming relationship in such strikingly different ways. Both of them add layers of interest to their characters that make them engaging between the lines. Sadly, Williams' character never gets a chance to evolve.
Continue reading: The Face Of Love Review
Michel Hazanavicius' 'The Search' failed to hit the spot at Cannes.
In many ways, Michel Hazanavicius always had a tough job creating the follow-up to his Oscar conquering movie The Artist, though it's been 2 years since the silent movie dominated the field at the Hollywood and Highland Center Theatre in Los Angeles and the Frenchman has had plenty of time to plot his comeback.
Michel Hazanavicius [L] and his wife Berenice Bejo [R]
That return was marked this week at Cannes with The Search, a drama starring his wife Berenice Bejo and the talented Annette Bening.
Gwyneth Paltrow's underwear will be the most talked about moment from the 'Thanks for Sharing' trailer - though the film could turn out to be pretty decent.
Ok so this happened. Gywneth's Paltrow's underwear, well, lingerie, is on full show in the trailer for her new movie 'Thanks for Sharing,' about three people who undergo a 12-step treatment to cure sex addiction. The 40-year-old wife of Coldplay's Chris Martin strips down to her smalls in the new clip which rolled out online on Wednesday (June 26, 2013).
Gywneth Paltrow At The Iron Man 3 Premiere - She Plays Pepper Potts In The Movies
Obviously you may have better things to do than watching Paltrow parading about in lingerie, but just in case you don't, the trailer's below. The comedy-drama also stars Tim Robbins (Shawshank Redemption), Josh Gad (Book of Mormon), Mark Ruffalo (Zodiac) Joely Richardson (Nip/Tuck), Carol Kane (Annie Hall) and the pop-star Pink.
Ginger and Rosa are teenage girls in the '60s and have vowed to always be the very best of friends. Together they skip school, do each other's hair and talk about everything from politics to the latest teen magazine articles. Both of them lead difficult home lives, with Rosa struggling without a father figure in her life and Ginger's mother tied to the four walls of their home while her activist father fights against the Cold War. Both are wishing to rebel against their dull lives in search of adventure and fulfilling their dreams. However, as the threat of a nuclear apocalypse draws near, the girls are divided by the paths they choose to take; Ginger wants to follow in her father's footsteps and protest against the bomb threat, determined to stay alive, while Rosa just wants to spend time with boys and live the life she has now rather than worry about the furture. Unfortunately, it's Ginger's father Roland that she takes an interest in which only looks to cause more problems. As Ginger seeks the help and guidance from two gay men (both named Mark) and an American poet named Bella, plenty of relationships look set to fall apart and the conflict closest to home becomes the biggest threat in their lives.
'Ginger and Rosa' is a coming-of-age drama about the opportunity ridden world of the sixties directed and written by Sally Potter ('The Man Who Cried', 'The Tango Lesson', 'Orlando').
Starring: Elle Fanning, Christina Hendricks, Alice Englert, Annette Bening, Timothy Spall, Oliver Platt, Alessandro Nivola, Jodhi May, Oliver Milburn, Greg Bennett, Andrew Hawley, Richard Strange, Matt Hookings, Marcus Shakesheff,
Director: Sally Potter
An extraordinary cast lifts this grim British drama into something watchable, even if the script ultimately gives up trying to make any sense. The main problem is that the story is very badly fragmented, but it still captures a vivid sense of how it felt to grow up in 1962 Britain. And the actors give performances that bring the characters to life even in scenes that are somewhat melodramatic.
Ginger and Rosa (Fanning and Englert) are inseparable 16-year-olds who were born in the same hospital on the same day. As they both ponder the horrific possibilities of the Cold War, their reactions begin to diverge, perhaps their first disagreement ever. Ginger's parents (Hendricks and Nivola) are liberal-minded and about to separate yet again, so she takes a militant approach to stopping nuclear annihilation. Rosa lives with her deeply religious single mother (May) and believes that the only thing to do is pray about it. But the thing that drives a real wedge between the girls is Ginger's suspicion that her dad might be having an affair with Rosa.
In the early scenes, Potter establishes the girls as imaginative friends with free spirits who do everything together. Then the plot begins to take increasingly dark twists and turns, leading to a series of awkward or downright horrible confrontations that are freaky and emotional but also thoroughly mawkish. There's a lot of glowering and weeping on display from everyone on-screen. Fortunately Fanning and newcomer Englert maintain a loose honesty in their performances that helps carry us through the difficult moments. And the starry supporting cast is terrific.
Continue reading: Ginger And Rosa Review
A romantic comedy with a dark twist, this film gets under the skin as it knowingly explores both the writing process and the nature of relationships. It also gives its cast a lot to play with in scenes that feature both broad slapstick and much more serious drama.
Paul Dano stars as Calvin, a writer who struck lightning with his first novel at age 19 and hasn't been able to write anything since. His brother (Messina) teases him about his future, his agent (Mandvi) is pushing him to write a new novel, and his therapist (Gould) just wants him to write something, anything. So he starts typing up a story about the girl (Kazan) who appears in his dreams. Then there she is, Ruby Sparks, in his kitchen! Sure he's officially losing his mind, he's shocked to discover that others can see her too. So he brings her into his life as his girlfriend, even introducing her to his hippie mother and stepdad (Benning and Banderas).
The film starts out as a breezy comedy, and Dano plays these scenes for laughs, including several broadly silly set-pieces as Calvin first meets Ruby. But the undertone very quickly starts turning serious, as we begin to understand the central themes about how we relate to our partners. Would we control their behaviour if we could? Get rid of annoying habits? Make them be more like our idea of the perfect spouse? But of course, that would cause a whole new set of problems.
Continue reading: Ruby Sparks Review
Ruby Sparks tells the story of a successful young novelist who starts to suffer from writer's block. Eventually, though, Calvin makes a huge development and invents Ruby Sparks; a beautiful, red-headed female character who he begins to fall madly in love with - despite her being a figment his imagination. or so he thinks. A week later he finds her casually sprawled on his couch and although Calvin tries to pass her off as the hallucinations of an over-active imagination, it soon becomes clear that his words have manifested themselves into a real-life person. More accurately, a real-life love interest.
Continue: Ruby Sparks Trailer
Fortunately writer-director Garcia is very careful to avoid wallowing in sentimentality.
Elizabeth (Watts) is a shark-like lawyer who easily seduces her new boss Paul (Jackson). She's had a difficult emotional life, and prefers to keep things under control, managing her friendships and relationships with icy distance.
Continue reading: Mother And Child Review
Continue reading: In Dreams Review
Date of birth
29th May, 1958
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