Hammond on ‘Frost/Nixon’

Posted by · 3:06 am · June 15th, 2008

Apologies for digging up a nearly three-week old article – somehow this escaped my notice until now. Buried in Pete Hammond’s typically thorough Cannes review is this very positive aside about Ron Howard’s much-anticipated “Frost/Nixon:”

Howard could, and probably will, find himself in competition with Eastwood in the directing category. His funny, complicated and fascinating film (we’ve seen it – it’s completed but so far avoiding the fest circuit and bypassing election season) is brilliant, even matching his Oscar-winning “A Beautiful Mind.”

Frank Langella as Nixon and Michael Sheen as David Frost, the man who conducts a series of TV interviews with the former president, are equally superb re-creating their Broadway and West End triumphs. Both are best actor candidates unless the studio decides to try to squeeze one or the other into supporting, which really seems unlikely. 

I wasn’t aware that cat had been let out of the bag on that prospect, but there you go. I admit I’ve been sceptical that Howard was the right man to realize Peter Morgan’s play, but if Hammond’s views are indicative of the critical reception to come, this could be a watershed film for him.

Hammond also echoes Kris’ prediction chart on the issue of category placement for the two leads – though if I were Michael Sheen, I’d find a way to wriggle into supporting, fast. 

→ 8 Comments Tags: , , , | Filed in: Daily

8 responses so far

  • 1 6-15-2008 at 7:50 pm

    Joel said...

    I’m really looking forward to this one. I’ll be home from college for the holidays, and it’s one I plan on seeing. It’ll be great to see a wonderful Ron Howard movie again, considering he was my favorite director for a long time.

    That, and I love Frank Langella.

  • 2 6-15-2008 at 9:37 pm

    Xavi Rodriguez said...

    Maybe it’s like another “Cinderella Man”, with only three nominations three years ago, and the film received decents reviews. I’m sorry but I have no faith to Howard, “A Beautiful Mind” is one of the most overracted Best Picture Winners at Oscars. Maybe I’m wrong… We only know the real answer at the end of the year

  • 3 6-15-2008 at 9:52 pm

    Marvin said...

    If it “matches” A Beautiful Mind then it probably won’t be any good to me. I think I might pass on this one.

  • 4 6-15-2008 at 10:40 pm

    Proman said...

    “If it “matches” A Beautiful Mind then it probably won’t be any good to me. I think I might pass on this one.”


  • 5 6-16-2008 at 1:43 am

    Guy Lodge said...

    Yeah, I’m no great fan of “A Beautiful Mind” either. But this is a very different animal. Peter Morgan’s writing is high on dry wit and low on sentimentality, which is why I was puzzled that Ron Howard chose to direct this. However it turns out, he certainly can’t make this material cuddly.

  • 6 6-16-2008 at 1:49 am

    Jonathan Spuij said...

    Indeed, comparing it to “Mind” is not a good idea, only it is when the acting is equal or better.
    I heard they showed the film around at Uni’s and campus-screenings for students. Complete with the music too, which I am really looking forward too. I mean, isn’t Zimmer like the last person you’d expect for a film such as this?

  • 7 6-16-2008 at 7:21 pm

    Joel said...

    I think it’s genius. Bringing in a bunch of “serious” filmmakers for a comedy? Awesome. I’m there.

    And I LOVED “A Beautiful Mind”. Everything about it.