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Review: Joaquin Phoenix Is Remarkable in The Master

Joaquin Phoenix Is Remarkable in The Master: Review

Originally posted 09/15/2012 09:30AM

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To say that Naval officer Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix in The Master) survived World War II would be to overstate the matter. While Freddie did not die, the bent, feral man who squints out of his right eye and talks out of the left side of his mouth is far from whole.

Sexually rapacious and a blistering drunk, Freddie is a lost sheep in need of a flock. As it happens, Lancaster Dodd (Philip Seymor Hoffman) is a shepherd. Personable and generous to Freddie when the young man stows away on his boat, Lancaster seems every bit Freddie's opposite.

Lancaster is also the founder of the Cause, a religious movement with clear parallels to Scientology. But this is not a movie about Scientology. Director Paul Thomas Anderson is far more interested in the dynamic between the men than he is in investigating religion. Fortunately, Hoffman and Phoenix know just how to make that dynamic riveting.

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Credit: AKM Images
Joaquin Phoenix & Casey Affleck Catch Up in L.A. | Casey Affleck, Joaquin Phoenix

Joaquin Phoenix & Casey Affleck Catch Up in L.A.

Originally posted 12/31/2010 05:00PM

Credit: AKM Images
Joaquin Phoenix & Casey Affleck Catch Up in L.A. | Casey Affleck, Joaquin Phoenix

Caught in the Act

Joaquin Phoenix & Casey Affleck Catch Up in L.A.

Originally posted 12/31/2010 06:00AM

I'm Still Here schemers Casey Affleck and Joaquin Phoenix met two pals for dinner at Osteria Mozza in Los Angeles. The well-dressed foursome sat in the middle of the dining room, and cordially greeted a few friends who stopped by to say hello.

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Credit: AKM Images
Joaquin Phoenix & Casey Affleck Catch Up in L.A. | Casey Affleck, Joaquin Phoenix

Caught in the Act

Caught in the Act!

Originally posted 12/31/2010 06:00AM

• I'm Still Here schemers Casey Affleck and Joaquin Phoenix met two pals for dinner at Osteria Mozza in Los Angeles. The well-dressed foursome sat in the middle of the dining room, and cordially greeted a few friends who stopped by to say hello.

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Joaquin Phoenix Returns to David Letterman with an Apology

Originally posted 09/22/2010 08:15PM

He's sane and sorry.

More than a year after Joaquin Phoenix's awkward appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman, the actor – clean-shaven and without sunglasses – returned to New York's Ed Sullivan Theater on Wednesday to apologize for his behavior.

"I mean, I think that you've interviewed many, many people and I assumed that you would know the difference between a character and a real person," he says about the now-infamous 2009 interview, in which a gum-chomping, mumbling Phoenix barely answered Letterman's questions. "I hope I didn't offend you in any way."

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Credit: Orlando Garcia/JPI
Casey Affleck: Joaquin Phoenix Documentary Wasn't Real

Casey Affleck: Joaquin Phoenix Documentary Wasn't Real

Originally posted 09/16/2010 08:05PM

Documentary? More like mockumentary.

Joaquin Phoenix's supposed bizarre behavior last year – including an awkward interview with David Letterman – chronicled in the film I'm Still Here was, in fact, all for show, director Casey Affleck reveals.

"It's a terrific performance, it's the performance of his career," Affleck tells The New York Times, finally providing an explanation for Phoenix's partying, impromptu rap performances and unkempt look.

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Credit: Picture Perfect/REX USA; Nicolas Briquet/Abaca
Ben Affleck, Natalie Portman, Joaquin Phoenix Fuel Toronto Film Fest Buzz | Ben Affleck, Natalie Portman

Ben Affleck, Natalie Portman, Joaquin Phoenix Fuel Toronto Film Fest Buzz

Originally posted 09/09/2010 11:20AM

Hoping to get a glimpse of Ben Affleck, shoot the breeze with James Franco, or catch a canoodle between Shia LaBeouf and Carey Mulligan? Then pack your bags for Toronto, because those are just of the few of the glittery names hitting town for the 35th Toronto International Film Festival.

Speaking of The Town, Affleck's heist drama of that name is one of the festival's most hotly anticipated films, along with Mulligan's mesmerizing Never Let Me Go, about children raised to be spare parts for wealthier, luckier humans. Having seen both, we can already declare them more than worthy (and look for Mulligan's name on Best Actress ballots come Oscar time).

Also generating heavy buzz is Franco in 127 Hours, Slumdog Millionaire director Danny Boyle's film about Aron Ralston, the hiker forced to cut off his own arm after being trapped by a boulder, and Natalie Portman in Black Swan, a dark (some say creepy) film about the ballet world. Word is, we should expect to see Portman giving Mulligan some solid competition come awards season.

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Is Joaquin Phoenix's New Documentary Intriguing – or Disturbing?

Originally posted 08/17/2010 11:50AM



For several months last year, a bearded and bizarre Joaquin Phoenix had everyone wondering, "Has he gone insane?"

Now, there's finally an answer – sort of.

The theatrical trailer for I’m Still Here, the Casey Affleck-directed documentary about the actor, 35, has just been released, and it offers a peek into that strange time.

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Credit: Seth Browarnik/Startraks
Casey Affleck Sued for Sexual Harassment – and He'll Sue Back

Casey Affleck Sued for Sexual Harassment – and He'll Sue Back

Originally posted 07/24/2010 06:00AM

Actor Casey Affleck has been slapped with a $2 million sexual harassment lawsuit by a producer of his offbeat documentary about Affleck's brother-in-law Joaquin Phoenix's quest to become a rap star. And Affleck is slapping back.

In papers filed Friday in Los Angeles, Amanda White claims Affleck acted inappropriately while directing I'm Still Here: The Lost Year of Joaquin Phoenix, alleging she encountered "uninvited and unwelcome sexual advances in the workplace" during production, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

In response, Michael Plonsker, a litigator for Affleck and his production company Flemmy Prods., tells the trade paper, "The allegations brought upon our clients are preposterous and without merit. Ms. White was terminated from the production over a year ago. She and her lawyers believe that this maliciously and erroneously filed complaint will cause the producers to succumb to her outrageous and baseless demands. She is mistaken."

Adds Plonsker: "The complaint will be vigorously defended and cross-claims will be filed against her."

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Good Deeds

Joaquin Phoenix Shaves Beard! New Look for Video

Originally posted 01/22/2010 01:30PM



Joaquin Phoenix is back in front of the camera, minus the beard and shades he sported on Late Show with David Letterman last February 2009 – and making fun of his on-air bizarre behavior.

A clean-shaven Phoenix, 35, along with Miley Cyrus and Liv Tyler, appears in a YouTube video for a charity called To Write Love on Her Arms, which is in the running to win an online competition for a $1 million grant to help suicide prevention.

The four-minute video opens with charity founder Jamie Tworkowski and Phoenix sitting in a loft-style space. Tworkowski explains during a music-video shoot with Phoenix's band that the charity's name was initially inspired by Phoenix – and the Magic-Marker scribblings on his arms.

Then the scene appears headed for the same awkwardness that ensued with Letterman. When Tworkowski solicits Phoenix's help with the campaign, he receives a long, uncomfortable pause from the fidgety actor. "Are you scared?" Tworkowski finally asks him – the first sign that, at least this time around, Phoenix is acting weird on purpose.

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