Archive for the 'Ma' Category

Octavia Spencer’s Best Performances, Ranked

Loved this article talking about the strength of the performances that Octavia gives.

You know who’s a real gem of an actress? Octavia Spencer. It might be unfair to say this, but if acting was basketball, then Octavia Spencer would probably be the industry’s MVP when it comes to assists. That’s because when you typically think of Octavia Spencer movies, you probably think about how she’s often the most shining performance in a supporting role. That’s not to say that she doesn’t take on lead roles, as she had an important one just recently in HBO Max’s The Witches. That said, most of her most memorable performances are usually of her giving a helping hand.

But support is so, so important, and it can make or break a story. That’s likely why Ms. Spencer won a Best Supporting Actress Academy Award for The Help, and was also nominated two other times for Hidden Figures and The Shape of Water. But if there is any one truth about Octavia Spencer, it’s that she’s an impeccable actress and we’re lucky to have her. Now on with the list.

10. Zootopia (Mrs. Otterton)
Voice acting is no easy feat, especially when you’re playing the diminutive Mrs. Otterton in Disney’s hit movie, Zootopia. Emotions run high in this film, and Octavia Spencer’s performance as a woman looking for her missing husband is a shining moment in a movie just brimming with shining moments. It’s such a little role, but Octavia Spencer manages to get us all emotionally invested in the search for her husband, and we’re rooting for Lt. Judy Hopps and Nick Wilde to find him.

But what really makes this performance special is just how well Octavia Spencer’s voice disappears into the character. Sure, if you know it’s her, then you’ll hear her. But if you don’t know it’s her, then you’ll just get fully invested in this character’s plight and sadness and will most likely say, “That was Octavia Spencer?” once you read the closing credits. She’s just too good. Even as an otter.

9. Snowpiercer (Tanya)
With such massive and memorable performances by Tilda Swinton, Ed Harris, and Chris Evans, it’s often easy to forget that Octavia Spencer is even in Bong Joon-ho’s Snowpiercer. But once you watch it again, you’ll remember her since she plays such an important but subtle role as Tanya, a mother who is determined to get her son back from authoritarian forces. She has a voice and she uses it to motivate people, much to great effect.

And while I won’t spoil the movie for you in case you haven’t seen it yet (and if you haven’t, it’s currently on Netflix) what ultimately happens to her will make you pound the armrest of your seat once you get invested in her character. Which is why Snowpiercer is a good movie on your first watch, but a great movie on your second or third viewings. And Octavia Spencer is just one of the reasons why. She’s acting her butt off without you really even noticing it. Because that’s just how great she is.

8. Onward (The Manticore)
I love Onward. In fact, it’s actually my new favorite Pixar movie, despite its lackluster performance at the box office. But as much as I love the overall story of two sons trying to bring back their father, what I love just as much is the characters. And Octavia Spencer comes in the blow us all away again as the once fierce, but now family-friendly, Manticore.

Octavia Spencer is hilarious since she has to withhold the seething, relentless rage that her species is known for, but also keep it all under wraps so that she can run a fantasy-themed restaurant. Of course she can’t hold it all together for too long, nor would we ever want her to.

Ma, Octavia Spencer, and How to Make the Right Kind of Trash

Jun 06, 2019  •  Ali  •  No Comment  •  Articles, Ma

The title of this article made me laugh! Here is Vanity Fair’s review of Ma.

Tate Taylor’s new Blumhouse vehicle is a lesson in why genre movies need style.

There’s a good movie trapped somewhere in Tate Taylor’s Ma. That’s the frustrating part. The film, which opened Friday, stars Octavia Spencer as Sue Ann, a maternal veterinary assistant in a small town whose life takes a turn when a group of underage teenagers ask her to buy them alcohol. One liquor-store run becomes another, and soon the teens are guests at a series of strange, all-night hangouts in Sue Ann’s basement. Soon thereafter things escalate into violence, generational secrets, and outright horror. There’s stalking, manic video messaging, drugging, a fake cancer scare, murder, a fiery climax —the kind of nonsense a good piece of genre trash needs.

Yet Ma never really lives up to its trashy potential, in part because its attention is overly drawn to the less absorbing nooks of its story—and in part because it tiptoes alongside the true dangers at its center, preferring instead to add more backstory, more psychological padding for it to under-explore.

The movie did well at the box office over the weekend, regardless, raking in $21.1 million in global markets, behind heavy hitters like Aladdin and Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Its main story is solid: the teens, played by charismatic young actors Dante Brown, Corey Fogelmanis, Gianni Paolo, McKaley Miller, and Booksmart’s Diana Silvers, bond over being lured and stalked by this increasingly unstable woman, all while hammering out their own burgeoning romances and social anxieties. For much of its run time, Ma seems like it will be a movie about an embittered woman’s misguided attempts to wreak havoc on the lives of a group of random high schoolers.

In truth—without completely spoiling it—Ma is a movie about an embittered woman’s attempts at wreaking havoc on the lives of people her own age: the teenagers’ parents. For my money the adult drama is actually the most satisfying thread here: not the story of the secret housemate living upstairs, or the other story of the secret encounter in a school closet, but rather the insightfully morbid look at a group of adult flameouts (played, alongside Spencer, by the likes of Juliette Lewis and Luke Evans)—who either graduated from high school, left town, tried to make something of themselves, and came back with their tails between their legs; or never left in the first place, playing out their middling adulthoods on the same streets and backroads that defined their upbeat teenage years.

It’s no wonder these adults never get past what happened when they were kids. Ma is to a great degree a movie about the adolescent traumas that never leave us, festering so far into the future that our own offspring are still unknowingly fighting our battles, Hatfield and McCoy-style—or Hatfield and McCoy versus Sue Ann.

That’s the petty drama that makes Ma as entertaining as it is—well, that and Spencer herself, of course. She won an Academy Award for best supporting actress the last time she collaborated with Tate Taylor, for her role as a headstrong maid in his 2011 film, The Help. It’s thanks to Spencer and her younger costars that Ma feels almost critic-proof, the kind of movie that’ll be watchable no matter how few chances it takes to really go there.

Octavia Spencer Shares How She Prepped For “Ma”

May 21, 2019  •  Ali  •  No Comment  •  Events, Interview, Ma, Videos

E!Online spoke with Octavia on the red carpet of the screening for her film Ma about her preparation for the role.

Ma Press Conference

May 21, 2019  •  Ali  •  No Comment  •  Events, Images, Ma

Some new images from the Ma Press Conference.

Gallery Links:
Octavia Spencer Online > 2019 > May 17 | Ma Press Conference In West Hollywood

Special Screening of Ma

May 21, 2019  •  Ali  •  No Comment  •  Events, Images, Ma

This past weekend Octavia and her cast & crew mates attended the special screening held for their new film Ma.

Gallery Links:
Octavia Spencer Online > 2019 > May 16 | Special Screening Of Ma In West Hollywood
Octavia Spencer Online > 2019 > May 16 | Special Screening Of Ma In West Hollywood – After Party

Ma is Octavia Spencer’s bloody revolution against racial stereotypes

May 16, 2019  •  Ali  •  No Comment  •  Ma

All it took for Octavia Spencer to board the Blumhouse thriller Ma (in theaters May 31) was the prospect of reversing an age-old stereotype.

“Black people always die in the first 15 minutes of a horror film,” the actress tells EW, recalling her initial skepticism upon hearing longtime friend and collaborator Tate Taylor’s (The Help) pitch for a disturbing, darkly funny revenge story. “He said, ‘Not only do you not die, you get to kill people!’”

Spencer immediately dove into the psyche of the titular loner who befriends a group of rowdy high schoolers, offering the basement of her isolated home as a safe space for their partying. Teenage debauchery quickly turns to bloody butchery, however, after their concerned parents unexpectedly trigger Ma’s past trauma. “Because certain things happened in her life, there’s a domino effect for her future,” she teases.

Taylor, who revamped the character (originally a sadistic white woman) to suit Spencer, compares Ma’s tone to the “goofiness of Misery” mixed with classic teen movies of the ’80s. But genre tropes weren’t the only thing the duo subverted.

“There are archetypes people only want to see me as,” Spencer adds. (“Wise characters” wearing “period wigs and costumes,” as Taylor explains it.) “So I had to change that for myself [and] the next young woman of color to be able to play every type of role.”

Fittingly, Taylor calls the film a “cautionary tale” about the mistreatment of women. “Don’t brush them under the rug and think there won’t be repercussions,” he teases. “Not with Ma!”


More Images from Ma

May 16, 2019  •  Ali  •  No Comment  •  Images, Ma

As the release date of Ma approaches more images from the film are being released … check out our gallery for the newest additions!

Gallery Links:
Octavia Spencer Online > Films > 2019 | Ma

Official Trailer for Ma

Mar 29, 2019  •  Ali  •  No Comment  •  Ma, Videos

Octavia stars as “Ma” aka Sue Ann in her new film in theaters May 31, 2019. Universal released the trailer recently! Check it out!

Everybody’s welcome at Ma’s. But good luck getting home safe.

Oscar® winner Octavia Spencer stars as Sue Ann, a loner who keeps to herself in her quiet Ohio town. One day, she is asked by Maggie, a new teenager in town (Diana Silvers, Glass), to buy some booze for her and her friends, and Sue Ann sees the chance to make some unsuspecting, if younger, friends of her own.

She offers the kids the chance to avoid drinking and driving by hanging out in the basement of her home. But there are some house rules: One of the kids has to stay sober. Don’t curse. Never go upstairs. And call her “Ma.”

But as Ma’s hospitality starts to curdle into obsession, what began as a teenage dream turns into a terrorizing nightmare, and Ma’s place goes from the best place in town to the worst place on earth.

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