Some actresses may feel like they have an uphill battle ahead of them when they decide to head into the entertainment industry, but few will face the same problems that Elizabeth Olsen faced. Some might see the fact that she was the little sister of two of the most famous twins of all time, “Full House” stars Mary-Kate and Ashley, as a step-up into the industry, but true industry insiders would know that was the very thing that could have railroaded her career before it even started. Luckily, this determined young actress had something to make her become a star on her own terms.
Elizabeth Chase Olsen was born on Feb. 16, 1989 in Sherman Oakes, California. Her father, David Olsen, is a mortgage banker and a real estate developer while her mother, Jarnette, was a personal manager. However, when Elizabeth was just six years old her father divorced her mother and remarried.
The entertainment bug bit Olsen at a very young age. She enrolled in singing and ballet classes and was soon appearing in her sister’s videos including “How The West Was Fun” and “The Adventures Of Mary-Kate And Ashley.” However, unlike most young actors Olsen decided not to drop out of school. Instead she attended Campbell Hall School in North Hollywood until graduation and then went to Tisch School Of The Arts, before also attending the Moscow Art Theater School in 2009.
In 2011, Olsen returned to the big screen in the horror film “Silent House” before wowing the world with her portrayal of a cult victim in the haunting “Martha Marcy May Marlene.” The film won Olsen a number of awards and saw her nominated for many more. More important was the fact though that it showed Hollywood that this was an Olsen who could really act.
She backed up that performance with more credible performances in “Peace, Love & Misunderstanding,” “Red Lights” and “Liberal Arts” before starring alongside Dane DeHaan and Daniel Radcliffe in “Kill Your Darlings,” another film which received even more critical success. To cap off 2013, she also appeared in “Very Good Things” and “In Secret” before finishing the year alongside Josh Brolin and Samuel L. Jackson in Spike Lee’s “Oldboy.”
Unlike her sisters, Elizabeth Olsen has always been somebody who likes to shy away from the public spotlight. Nothing at all is known about her relationship status; however, it is known that she was so worried about Mary-Kate’s eating disorder and the media frenzy that it caused that she considered turning her back on her acting career.
Despite her young age (Olsen is still only twenty-four) Elizabeth Olsen has fast become one of Hollywood’s most sought after actresses as throughout her short acting career she has constantly shown that she is able to pull off any film role that she attempts, normally with dazzling results. The next project that she is attempting, however, will win her a whole new batch of fans as she is set to star in “Godzilla” alongside Bryan Cranston before then playing Scarlet Witch in “The Avengers: Age Of Ultron.” Yes, Elizabeth Olsen may be an award winner but now she is also about to become a box office winner.
This week on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Adam, Dave, Nick and Greg take a look at new release films ‘The Zero Theorem’, ‘The Broken Circle Breakdown’, ‘Godzilla’, ‘Last Paradise’ and ‘Child’s Pose’. This episode also sees Dave give a mini review of X-Men: Days Of Future Past.
Also make sure you listen for your chance to win a double pass to see The Babadook.
To listen to the show you can download it for free from our Podcast Channel – Listen/Download here
Summary: The world’s most famous monster is pitted against malevolent creatures who, bolstered by humanity’s scientific arrogance, threaten our very existence.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 15th May, 2014
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Country: USA, Japan
Director: Gareth Edwards
Screenwriter: Max Borenstein, Dave Callaham (story)
Cast: CJ Adams (Young Ford), Juliette Binoche (Sandra Brody), Carson Bolde (Sam Brody), Garry Chalk (Stan Walsh), Bryan Cranston (Joe Brody), Jake Cunanan (Akio), James D. Dever (Captain Freeman), Catherine Lough Haggquist (PO #1 Martinez), Sally Hawkins (Vivienne Graham), Richard T. Jones (Captain Russell Hampton), Hiro Kanagawa (Hayato), Eric Keenleyside (Boyd), Anthony Konechny (Thach), Brian Markinson (Whelan), Gardiner Millar (Fitzgerald), Elizabeth Olsen (Elle Brody), Ty Olsson (Jainway), Victor Rasuk (Sergeant Tre Morales), Patrick Sabongui (Lieutenant Commander Marcus Waltz), Al Sapienza (Huddleston), David Strathairn (Admiral William Stenz), Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Ford Brody), Ken Watanabe (Dr. Ichiro Serizawa), Ken Yamamura (Takashi)
Runtime: 123 mins
Adam Ross: You can check out Adam’s Godzilla review on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #79
Nick Gardener: You can check out Nick’s Godzilla review on The Good The Bad The Ugly Film Show Ep #79
Fans of Godzilla films want and deserve a good Godzilla film, after all the poor suffering souls have nothing but a bad taste in their mouth after the 1998 Matthew Broderick led disaster. Well now comes the 2014 update and on the surface it seems that in a rare oddity Hollywood has finally picked the right director to be at the helm of a major project. Anyone that can remember just how good Monsters was will attest to the fact that Gareth Edwards knows how to make a damn fine ‘monster flick.’
This time around we find Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston – Get A Job, Cold Comes The Night) alarmed at the seismic activity going on around the Japanese nuclear power plant where he works. To his surprise nobody seems to take him seriously and the result is a catastrophe that results in the death of many other workers including his wife.
Flash-forward to fifteen years later and Joe’s son Ford (Aaron Taylor-Johnson – Kick-Ass 2, Anna Karenina) is now a bomb expert in the military. He is also married to emergency room nurse, Elle (Elizabeth Olsen – Oldboy, In Secret) and has a young son that his military service takes him away from far to often. It is therefore understandable that he is frustrated when on a rare time at home he receives a call from Japanese authorities informing him that Joe has been arrested entering into a quarantined zone.
After bailing his father out Ford learns that his father believes that the authorities are keeping something secret inside the ‘zone’ and he wants to get inside to find his old data and to see what is going on. Reluctantly Ford follows his father and soon learns that experts, including Vivienne Graham (Sally Hawkins – The Double, Blue Jasmine) and Dr. Ichiro Serizawa (Ken Watanabe – Unforgiven, Inception) have been keeping a very large secret that is about to unleash itself onto the world.
It is easy to see Edwards’ handy work all over Godzilla. His monster sequences are well worth the price of admission, especially the ‘monster fights’ and at times he isn’t afraid to pull the focus away from these battles to show what the humans such as Ford are doing at that time. However while these sequences do look impressive as a whole Godzilla is held back from becoming a great film because of several reasons.
One of the major flaws of Godzilla is the characterisation. While you hardly go into a ‘monster flick’ expecting an epic back story for each character it is disappointing to find that a lot of the characters here in Godzilla are dangerously one dimensional. For example Dr. Serizawa is one of the more interesting characters although very little is learnt about him, then there is the massive under use of Elle, which results in the crime of seeing an award winning actress like Elizabeth Olsen become little more than scenery as she simple watches monsters go by with her mouth open like a Laughing Clown. The lack of characterization causes a problem later on in the film when the audience begins to realise that they really don’t care whether some characters survive the slaughter or not.
Of course though one of the most important things for a film like Godzilla however is what do the monsters actually look? Well Godzilla himself looks fine, Edwards’ team has actually done a pretty good throw back to the Godzilla of old. The same however cannot be said for the other Kaiju monsters that appear in the film, call me an old-fogey but somehow they seem just a little bit too metallic and robotic like for me. Their look makes them look very fake while on the other hand Godzilla’s natural look makes it almost believable that such creatures do live somewhere out there under the sea.
The decent storyline however does allow some of the actors to show their worth though. Bryan Cranston is given some moments to show his dramatic range, a welcome relief after the teaser footage they showed us a couple of months ago made it look like he might have been going for a comedic portrayal of his character, while Aaron Taylor-Johnson pulls on a serious face and actually shows that he may have what it takes to become an action hero in the future. As previously mentioned though some of the cast – especially Elizabeth Olsen and Ken Watanabe – are completely wasted in their one dimensional roles.
Godzilla is certainly far from a bad film. The good storyline and decent action sequences make it a worthy watch and Gareth Edwards should be congratulated for that, but sadly some elements of the script will still leave some serious film lovers wanting more.
Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Godzilla′: Nil
A few of us from Subculture Media were lucky enough to attend a special screening of some of the footage from the forthcoming film Godzilla from the very talented director Gareth Edwards. The screening itself was really a bit of a teaser as it baited us just enough for us to really want to have a look at this film.
The fact that Godzilla is directed by Gareth Edwards the man who delivered the very fine Monsters back in 2010 is obvious. For those that saw Monsters you will quickly remember that this was a monster film that was more about characterisation and drama than the monsters at hand. He also showed a great talent for dramatic action sequences and while the sequences they showed us of Godzilla wasn’t really enough for us to make up our minds on too much of the film it was enough to suggest that this film is going to be a lot better than the one that surfaced in 1998 and starred Matthew Broderick.
From what we saw Edwards has gone for a Battle: Los Angeles feel to this film, realistic looking battle sequences from the military’s point of view that looks so real you could be excused for thinking that it’s actual footage. There also seems to be a main plot thread that follows Joe Brody (Bryan Cranstan) a scientist that works at a nuclear power plant that is hit by a series of earthquakes. With his wife dying in the disaster and the fact he doesn’t believe it was an earthquake he returns to the scene of the accident and soon learns that things aren’t what they seem.
We were shown the scenes of Joe trying frantically to rescue his wife and while they were suspenseful there was a bit of a concern that perhaps Cranston may be more like he was in Total Recall than Breaking Bad. Still it wasn’t enough to make a fair judgement on, and to be honest the scenes of him returning to the scene-of-the-crime and the footage of the destruction of capital cities with tsunamis etc did actually look bloody good.
We’d love to be able to tell you what Godzilla himself looked like, but sadly just like Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen we didn’t see much of him. Just a quick glance that actually made him look pretty fearsome, certainly no cute looking dinosaur creature here.
To sum up Godzilla looks like a disaster film with the brute force that only Gareth Edwards can bring to a film. The ideas of military and Government conspiracies does look like it brings a nice edge to it… so I guess now we just wait and see how Godzilla turns out when we get a chance to review the full the thing.
If you’re a fan of Elizabeth Olsen then you may want to check out the Elizabeth Olsen biography that Dave Griffiths has written for Entertainment Scene. 360. You can view the article on Entertainment Scene 360 here.