September 14, 2016 at 10:04 am #1201922272
Why is absolutely no one talking about this movie? It seems to have slipped the minds of everyone, when at Sundance it got very good reviews, with Hall being pretty much universally praised. What happened?September 14, 2016 at 2:42 pm #1201922459
Good question. If this was 2014 (a weak field for Best Actress) she would probably be more in the conversation. But the category is stacked this year, and most of the contenders have distributors with more Oscar campaigning experience than Christine’s The Orchard.September 14, 2016 at 2:55 pm #1201922470
I’ve also been wondering this! I really felt like she would be nominated with high potential to win, playing a dark role like Rosamund Pike in Gone Girl or Brie Larson in Room. Based on a clip, reviews, and her history of being overlooked, I’d really like if she was able to get in and even win (I listed her as my personal choice for this year on a thread somewhere on here, idek why but she’s talented and I love roles like this), but obviously with the way Best Actress looks this year, it’s extremely unlikely.September 18, 2016 at 10:05 am #1201923895
Jackie sucked the air out the room.September 18, 2016 at 1:38 pm #1201923975
I’m very excited to see this, didn’t knew much about the story and it seems Rebecca Hall gives a top notch performance.October 7, 2016 at 2:18 pm #1201933166
Rebecca Hall is fantastic as Christine.
Such a delicately layered performance she is compelling to watch. She manages to convey the vast array of Christine’s psyche with what seems like such ease.
Also, while most/all of the praise is (deservedly) going to Hall – this is a great ensemble film too.
I would definitely recommend seeing this. Admittedly, I haven’t seen any of the MAIN Best Actress contenders – but if Hall is absent from my personal five, it shows that this year is the strongest race in that category in recent memory!October 7, 2016 at 5:47 pm #1201933202
For some reason, I am afraid of seeing this film, knowing the story. The story is super strong and I wouldn’t mind another fresh face taking home the Oscar. She is the real one to watch.October 14, 2016 at 10:24 am #1201935266
Rebecca Hall is one of those thespians whom we realize is very talented, in spite of or because of her films.
I think Antonio has been building up to Christine, which reminds me somewhat of Reservoir Dogs evolving into Pulp Fiction.
I appreciate Rebecca’s work but this is one film I am passing on. Just thinking about it, and knowing the approach it’ll take makes me quite angry, upset, and exasperated.October 15, 2016 at 6:57 am #1201935508
I appreciate Rebecca’s work but this is one film I am passing on. Just thinking about it, and knowing the approach it’ll take makes me quite angry, upset, and exasperated.
How do you know which approach it will take?
History, trajectory, business…..I hope I’m wrong.October 24, 2016 at 10:11 am #1201938811
A number of years back, in college, I composed a paper on the history of safety regulations in the film industry. A key focus of mine was the horrific accident that occurred on the set of Twilight Zone: The Movie in the summer of 1982 – that is, the helicopter crash that ended the lives of veteran actor Vic Morrow and child actors Myca Dinh Le and Renee Shin-Yi Chen.
While researching that event, I came across the now-defunct shock site Ogrish, which specialized in uploading graphic, gory multimedia of accidents, executions and so on, that would never be allowed to grace a mainstream video-sharing website like YouTube. Besides video of the accident itself, there were countless threads on their message boards discussing the Twilight Zone incident. There was even more chatter, however, about another grisly death once captured on film.
That marked the first time I’d ever heard the name Christine Chubbuck, despite at that point having already put in a few years toward my Bachelor’s degree in Journalism. To the Ogrish crowd, Chubbuck was something of a legend, her suicide having been broadcast live on-air over the Sarasota, Florida airwaves in the summer of 1974. That video of this tragedy has never surfaced since its live airing made Chubbuck’s death all the more intriguing to these online chatters.
At the time, I did a bit more digging – beyond the Ogrish crowd, of course – on her life and career but otherwise, in the years since, had not given a thought to Chubbuck.
Now, however, comes Christine, a motion picture focused on the final days of Chubbuck’s life.
With the mesmerizing Rebecca Hall (who was so terrific in last year’s The Gift too) in the title role, the film portrays Chubbuck as an immensely talented and committed journalist. Craving to report on serious issues of substance, even if it’s dry material like zoning laws, she is constantly at odds with her boss (Tracy Letts), who wants juicier, more sensational stories to boost the flailing network’s ratings. She’s a standoffish presence at work but at least has the respect of her other colleagues (Michael C. Hall and Maria Dizzia among them).
Chubbuck, however, does not have much of a life outside the office. She has struggled with depression for years, having attempted suicide several times in the past. After graduating from Boston University’s journalism school, she moved back down to Sarasota to reside with her mother (J. Smith-Cameron) and their relationship is often contentious, especially when her mom brings home a new boyfriend. Chubbuck dreams of moving up in the reporting ranks and starting a family with a wonderful man but several events – over what will prove the final days of her life – make those desires look all the more implausible.
Christine does not break a ton of new ground on the much-explored scene of 1970s journalism and we’ve seen the “serious vs. sensational journalism” debate tackled more compellingly before. The picture also goes on 10 minutes too long, ending on a note that just isn’t very convincing. The look and feel of the time is, however, captured quite nicely, and the film sports a marvelous soundtrack. Beyond the warm and affecting Smith-Cameron, none of the supporting cast leaves much of an impression.
The picture is, however, well-worth a look for one reason, that of course being its leading lady. Hall gives a truly pitch-perfect, lived-in performance as Chubbuck. While Letts grandstands in a hammy turn as the network boss, Hall is brilliantly subtle here and not only heartbreaking but, given Chubbuck’s self-deprecating nature, often very funny too. She particularly amazes during a roller coaster-of-emotions sequence in which Chubbuck is invited out to dinner by the network’s lead anchor.
While pundits these days seem focused almost exclusively on the likes of Emma Stone and Natalie Portman, we should not this awards season overlook the sublime work here from one of Hollywood’s most underappreciated actresses.
OSCAR FLASHBACK: HORROR at the Oscars! Chapter III (1980-1998)
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