Archive for February, 2013


Liz Taylor

Born on the 27th of February, 1932, this bewitching beauty was one of the greatest actresses of her time.

Child Star of the 40’s. Superstar of the 50’s & 60’s. And Style Icon forever.

ELizabeth Taylor 81st Birth Anniversary

One the last of luminaries from the golden era of cinema. With her passing away, almost two years ago, on March 23rd, 2011, it’s an end of an era. See my many critiques of her varied roles and films, from many a lists related to Elizabeth Taylor, I’ve made on IMDB, within the last two years.

See all lists by nuwansdel_02 (Nuwan Sen’s Film Sense) IMDB

Press on the links My Top 10 Cinematic roles of Dame Elizabeth Taylor, Fashion Icons of the past century, The Foxy Fifties, 50-50’s, The Late 60’s (1966-1970) öö, The Essential 60’s (Top 60) and Why I love ….. to see many a tributes I’ve paid to this violet eyed beauty and legendary Oscar winning actress.

Nuwan Sen’s Film Sense

Advertisements

 Yesterday, the 25th of February 2013 ……

– was

Artist, Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s 172nd Birth Anniversary.

Nuwan et Renoir (Oct 2008) # 1

Nuwan et Renoir (Oct 2008) # 1

Nuwan et Renoir (0ct 2OO8) # 2

Nuwan et Renoir (0ct 2OO8) # 2

Pix #1 With Renoir’s The Bathers @ Musée d’Orsay, Paris (Oct 2008) 

Pix #2 With Renoir’s Girls at the Piano @ Musée d’Orsay, Paris (Oct 2008) 

Born on the 25th of February, 1841, Renoir, happens to be one of my favourite artists from the impressionist era. What I love about his work is the unique use of extremely fine (tiny) brush strokes. Especially in The Bathers, the two reclining nudes look as if the two whole figures are covered with tiny little brownish hairs. And his use of warm colours to enhance the natural summery glow of the painting beautifies the work even more. Girls at the Piano too has that summery jubilant feel, but contrasting the society of the two females present in this picture, to that of The Bathers.  

Nuwan et Renoir (Sept 2OO8) # 3

Nuwan et Renoir (Sept 2008) #3

 Pix #3 With Renoir’s Ball at the Moulin de la Galette @ Musée d’Orsay, Paris (Sept 2008) 

Contrasting to the earlier two Renoir’s, the third picture, taken when I visited Musée d’Orsay  a month earlier, this particular painting uses more cooler shades. What I like most about this painting (along with a few others done in a similar style) is the way he depicts the sunny patches falling on the people through the trees. 

– was 

when I got up early in the morning, to catch the Oscars 2013, live telecast on Star Movies, despite a sleepless night. The 85th Annual Academy Awards was held on the 24th February 2013 night, by US time (Western US), which was early morning 25th February 2013, here. 

Oscar Red Carpet 2013

Oscar Red Carpet 2013

Red Carpet style & The Oscars

From all the celebrities, my favourite outfit was that of Anne Hathaway. She had an almost Audrey Hepburn kind of charm, in that simple pink outfit, very clean cut, neat. My kind of style. And her short crop works well with that outfit, making her feel more Hepburn and less Hathaway. Just as I was thinking that she has managed to capture the essence of Audrey Hepburn, Hathaway mentioned that the rocks on her neck were from Tiffany’s. Hathaway @ Tiffany’s!!! Wow!! She won the Best Supporting Actress for Les Miserables (2012). Jessica Chastain & Jennifer Lawrence were the next two best dressed fem fatales of the evening. The main surprise at the ceremony for me was Jennifer Lawrence winning the Oscar for Best Actress, that was a bit unexpected. I’m sure she deserved it, although I can’t judge as I haven’t been able to see any of the films that were nominated this year. Having followed the Oscar buzz, I wasn’t surprised with any other win. Best Film, Argo (2012), Best Actor Daniel Day Lewis et al, won as expected. 

Seth Macfarlane did a superb job hosting the show. The highlights for me were, when he hinted at the Academy for not nominating Ben Affleck, the Captain Von Trapp scene and of course the segment of the ‘Boob’ song referring to all the Kate Winslet movies where she’s bared it all. Winslet by far is the best actress today after Meryl Streep. All in all, loved the show and re-watched most of it when it was re-telecast last night.

NS

Oscar Winners & Show

-was

a full moon day.

While the wolves were howling on one side of the globe, religious activities were being held on this side of the globe. Of course dogs were howling at the moon here as well.

Nuwan Sen’s Film Sense

Nuwan Sen n’ Style

Nuwan Sen’s Artistic Sense

Barney Stinson V/s Neal Caffrey : The two Best dressed men on TV today

February 21, 2013 (23oohrs)

Barney Stinson V/s Neal Caffrey : The two Best dressed men on TV today

What do Barney Stinson (character played by Neil Patrick Harris); from the situation comedy, How I Met Your Mother (2005 till date); & Neal Caffrey; (character played by Matt Bomer) from the lighter genre of crime drama, White Collar (2009 till date); have in common????

                 Barney Stinson & Neal Caffrey

Well, they are both in their 30’s, smart, flirty, are lucky with the ladies, but most of all, they both have a great dress sense. They are always impeccably well dressed in neatly tailored suits to perfectly fit their lean figures. Their perfectionist attire is, be it formal suits or casual chic, so spot on with meticulously detailed precision, that the rest of the cast (who are generally well dressed) comparatively look like shabby hobo’s (just a slight exaggeration there, the rest aren’t that bad, some of the times).        

Neil Patrick Harris

I first got to know NPH, as a teenager back in 1994, when I saw him in an episode of a show called Doogie Howser, M.D. (1989 – 1993), with a few of my peers who were crazy about the show. I never got a chance to watch it again, nor was I interested. As the years went by I happen to catch NPH in many a good, but not great, television movies. The likes of Snowbound: The Jim and Jennifer Stolpa Story (1994), The Man in the Attic (1995), The Christmas Wish (1998) in 90’s; and some years ago The Wedding Dress (2001) to name a few. Added to this I had seen him in some forgettable roles in such big screen ventures like Starship Troopers (1997) and The Next Best Thing (2000).
Then, when I was studying in Sydney, I watched an episode of How I Met Your Mother, back in 2007 (a flatmate of mine was into this show). It seemed pretty good, but I didn’t get to watch it again and wasn’t that interested back then. Most probably ’cause I had more scope for a life at the time than to spend my time watching TV. Not that I didn’t, but being a film buff I always preferred to watch a good movie, and I did watch quite a few back then, both on the big screen and small. And of course I was busy with my course. And I use to socialise with friends and fellow students.  
Anyway now residing in a country, with very little scope in much of anything for me, and getting to watch any good movies out here being an absolute rarity, I was happy when we got cable TV few years ago, with some very good foreign entertainment channels, like Star World and Star Movies from India, and Fox Crime from Malaysia/Hong Kong/Singapore (well one of the three). Thus, since late 2010, I ended up watching quite a few good television shows, be it situation comedies, crime dramas, musical dramas or crime comedies, but rarely good movies.
And I loved watching How I Met Your Mother, since then. Currently am watching re-runs of How I Met Your Mother (season 6), although have seen it before and have watched the 7th season as well. Most of the episodes are really interesting that you can sit through them again. Can’t wait to catch the final (8th) season.

Barney Stinson

Barney Stinson happens to be the most interesting character in the show. Bit eccentric, a playboy that leads an extremely wild promiscuous lifestyle, and at times a total prick. Not a likable character you’d want to associate in real life. But we do tend see a sensitive side of his as well, he could be a really good friend, has a constant insecurity due to absence of a father figure in his life, fear of commitment but deep down he really could actually care for a person he likes and secretly desires to settle down like his friends.
But most of all, the best thing about Stinson, is his highly sophisticated dress sense. He’s a gentleman from appearance though not so much in character.    

Matthew Bomer

Unlike Neil Patrick Harris, Matt Bomer, wasn’t an actor I was that familiar with. When I was residing in England, I use to watch this show called Tru Calling (2003-2004), back in 2004. Bomer played the doomed boyfriend of Eliza Dushku’s character Tru, who gets killed off. I liked the show back then, didn’t know who the actor playing her boyfriend was, and later forgot about it. Much later I watched the movie Flightplan (2005) with Jodie Foster, in which Bomer has a miniscule role as an in-flight steward. He looked familiar, I assumed it was some other good looking TV actor I had seen, and again forgot about it. Then they started showing White Collar on Star World a couple of years back. I was hooked from the start.
More recently I saw, both NPH & Bomer, in two different episodes of Glee (2009 till date) each; and saw Bomer in the recent bummer called In Time (2011), what was he thinking, I watched it because of him, what was I thinking.
Last two nights I watched the first two episode of White Collar (Season 4) on Star World, they started the new series after a successful broadcast of the first two seasons of Homeland (2011 till date), on the same timeslot at 2300hours (11pm) which too I really enjoyed watching. Just why do the best shows have to be so late.

Neal Caffrey

Neal Caffrey happens to the most likable character on TV today. He’s a charming conman, smart, elegant, sophisticated, cool, a bit of a playboy (although nowhere as near as promiscuous as Stinson, Caffrey does manage to find a different girl to warm his bed in every series, except the first when he had girlfriend, of course that didn’t stop him from being a bit of flirt) and happens to be a really good looker.
So many crime shows today happen to have so much of blood and gore, it’s refreshing to see a crime drama in a slightly lighter vein, in the style of white collar crimes such as art forgeries and other classy larceny. It’s an ode to classy conman of classic films. Thus the best thing about this sexy ladies man happens to be, like Stinson, his incredible dress sense that’s a class apart. But unlike Stinson, Caffrey is a true gentleman in both his personality as well as in appearance. He would never use a girl like Stinson, and Caffrey also happens to be a true romantic. While Stinson fools his prey (women) to sleep with him, Caffrey seduces them romantically and doesn’t use them as a one night stand. Caffrey just happens to be a nicer person that you’d love to associate it real life.

Neil Patrick Harris & Matt Bomer

Real Life vs. Reel Life (Compare & Contrast)

Much like the characters they play, in real life, they too seem to have a great dress sense. But that’s where the comparisons stop. They are far from being the promiscuous playboys their characters portray. Both, Neil Patrick Harris and Matt Bomer, are in a committed relationship with their respective partners. And they are both gay. The Best thing is that they can’t be boxed into the stereotypical mould of the clichéd gay persona of what a gay person is suppose to look or behave like. Just because they are gay, doesn’t mean they have to behave like women, nor do they try to be overtly masculine.
Gay men are still men, after all.
Neil Patrick Harris came out years ago, but Bomer only did so recently, this month last year. Kudos to Matt Bomer for doing so.

Here’s to the two best dressed men on TV today.
You are a class apart.

Nuwan Sen n’ Style. Nuwan Sen’s Fashion Sense. Nuwan Sen’s TV Sense.

Note : Barney Stinson V/s Neal Caffrey : The two Best dressed men on TV today 

February 22, 2013 (12oohrs) Noon
I actually wrote this post last night and posted it on my blog last night itself. But the experiment I tried didn’t work. I wanted  to try posting it on another page ‘This & That’, but it got posted under the title as a another sub page. Not what I planned. But it was already 11pm and White Collar had started, plus I was pretty tired by then. So today I decided to re-post it on my ‘Home’ page; with a few minute changes that would be hardly noticeable; as nobody would actually see this post otherwise, unless one tries specifically to locate it. But if anyone wants, you are welcome to check the original under ‘This & That’ , and do a Compare & Contrast.
 

Nuwan Sen n’ Style. Nuwan Sen’s Fashion Sense. Nuwan Sen’s TV Sense.

 

To Sidney, with Love

Happy 86th Birthday Sidney Poitier

To Sidney with Love

Born on the 20th of February, 1927, Poitier was the first black actor (African-American) to receive an Oscar in 1964 for Lilies of the Field (1963). I haven’t seen Lilies of the Field yet. But from the movies starring Poitier that I have watched, two of my favourites happen to be :-

To Sir, with Love (1967)

&

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967)

Nuwan Sen’s Film Sense

On the 16th of February, 1923, the sarcophagus of the Pharaoh Tutankhamun (a.k.a King Tut), were discovered, with his mummified remains inside. 

English archaeologist and Egyptologist, Howard Carter, led the expedition to excavate the ancient tomb of King Tut, funded by the Earl of Carnarvon. Carter and his crew discovered the steps leading to King Tut’s tomb in November 1922.  Lord Carnarvon soon joined the expedition along with his daughter. And finally on 16th February 1923, Carter opened the doorway to the burial chamber where the elaborately carved sarcophagus of one of the most famous teenage Pharaohs of the ancient civilisation was discovered.

 Tutankhamun

Tutankhamun ascended the throne when he was only 9 years old, and married his half-sister Ankhesenamen. They had two daughters both stillborn. King Tut, died aged 19, and Ankhesenamen went on to live till she was about 24.

The curse of King Tutankhamun

There were various mystery deaths post the discovery of King Tut’s tomb. Lord Carnarvon was the first to die. Bitten by a mosquito and accidentally slashing it while shaving, which in turn got it infected, and as a result the earl died of the blood poisoning. 

 Sir Bruce Ingham, who came into possession of a mummified wrist of King Tut’s with a bracelet with  inscription ‘Cursed be he who moves my body. To him shall come fire, water and pestilence‘, his house burnt down soon after he received it.  Six others died after this discovery, but Carter, who survived the curse, died much much later in 1939, aged 64.

Nuwan Sen’s Historical Sense

ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer), the very first modern computer, that was big enough to fill a room, was first commissioned during the second World War, on the 5th of June, 1943. It was finally completed and announced to the public by the 14 of February, 1946. And on the 15th of February, 1946 (exactly 67 years to date), it was formally dedicated at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA.

Computing systems have existed since the 19th century, yet it’s only in the early 20th century (specifically the 1930’s & 40’s), the modern computer era actually began. And ENIAC was the first; Turing-complete, digital, and capable of being reprogrammed; computer. The press at the time called it the ‘Great Brain’. The ENIAC was in operation until October 2nd, 1955; giving way to more advance technology. And today, thanks to this brainchild of John Mauchly and J. Presper Eckert from 67 years ago, we have laptops, tablets, iPads etc etc. You name it. The world today practically lives in Cyberspace.

Today is also the 131st Birth Anniversary of actor John Barrymore (One of the first of the Barrymore’s to brace the big screen, the paternal grandfather of actress Drew Barrymore). He died aged 60, in 1942.  The only movie of his that I have watched and loved so far happens to be the classic comedy, Dinner at Eight (1933), opposite the most famous platinum blonde of that era, Jean Harlow. Am yet to see some of his great performances from movies like, the silent classic based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s novella,  Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1920) , to famed early talkies like Grand Hotel (1932), Rasputin and the Empress (1932) – with all three Barrymore siblings, Night Flight (1933) and Twentieth Century (1934); to name a few.

Actress Jane Seymour turns 62 today. Born in 1951, thus a part of baby boomer generation, she appeared in some interesting movies early in her career, like Richard Attenborough’s Young Winston (1972) for example, which was based on the early years of Winston Churchill’s life. But she most probably gained more popularity for her role of ‘Solitaire’, a Bond girl, in Live and Let Die (1973). It was later in her career when she focused her attention to the small screen that she got more acclaimed roles where she could prove herself as an actress, in television movies and mini-series such as, Obsessed with a Married Woman (1985) and playing the famed real life Opera singer ‘Maria Callas’ in Onassis: The Richest Man in the World (1988), among many others. More recently I saw her in an episode of the TV series Castle (2009).

Nuwan Sen’s Historical Sense, Nuwan Sen’s Film Sense

°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°°

On February 14th, Year 269 A.D, Saint Valentine, a Roman-Catholic, was beheaded, under the rein of Emperor Claudius II (Claudius Gothicus) of Rome, for secretly helping young Christian couples get married. Under Claudius II, helping any Christians in Rome, in any form, was considered a criminal offence.  Thus to commemorate this day, as the death of a martyr who helped young lovers get married, February 14th, is now known as a day for people in love.

Of course today it has been taken completely out of context. Not many a people are into marriage now a days,  for one thing. And it’s not necessarily celebrated as a day of Love anymore. The day for Love & Romance has been now turned into a day for Lust & Sex. Most people don’t even know the true significance of St. Valentine’s Day. What a way of ‘remembrance’ for a Martyr who was killed for helping young innocent lovers (mostly teenagers back then) to get married immaterial of their cast, race or religion.

 St. Valentine’s Day Massacre’s

February 14th, Year 1349 –  Valentine Massacre occurred, where hundred’s of Jews were burnt to death in Strasbourg (Eastern France, bordering Germany).

February 14th, Year 1929 – St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. Famed Chicago gangster of the Roaring 20’s, Al Capone, ordered the massacre of seven associates of his opposing mob. Dressed as cops, Capone’s gang, lined up the seven men, who assumed it was a routine check up, and opened fire. Making it one of the bloodiest blood baths of modern American History.

Today February 14th, Year 2013 – A Valentine’s Day Murder. Six time Paralympics Gold medallist & Olympic star, 26 year old Oscar Pistorius, shot dead his model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, supposedly by accident, in South Africa. It is believed that the girlfriend had come in to surprise him on Valentine’s Day, and assuming she was an intruder, he had shot her. Nothing has been proven yet.

Nuwan Sen’s Historical Sense

The 1950’s

The 1950’s

An era of mischief, fun, rock n’ roll, modernist youth culture, post-modern art, epic films, musicals, romance, tragic dramas, the Cold War, and the era of the Baby Boomers (who interestingly would now be in their 50’s & 60’s).

Films of the 50’s, set in their time, were a reflection of their times, and they beautifully captured the easy going, fun loving, youthful lifestyles of that period. 

50's in Film 

Pix: Left – Jean-Paul Belmondo & Jean Seberg walking around the streets of Paris in, one of the earliest of the French New Wave,  À bout de souffle (1959/60). Top Right – A young Roger Moore in a brief appearance opposite Elizabeth Taylor in, this tragic post ‘Second World War’ romance, The Last Time I Saw Paris (1954). Bottom Right – Audrey Hepburn and Jeremy Brett playing Brother & Sister from a Russian aristocratic family in this epic set during the ‘Napoleonic Wars’ of the early 19th century, in War and Peace (1956).

Chk out my pictorial tribute to the Films of the 50’s, titled  ‘50-50’s‘ on IMDB.

Alain Delon & Nutan in the 50's

Alain Delon & Nutan in the 50’s

Chk out my previous tributes to films & film stars of the 1950’s,on IMDB. Especially the lists titled ‘The Foxy Fifties‘ and ‘These are a Few of my Favourites‘. And many more.

Nuwan Sen’s Film Sense