maggie gyllenhaal & crazy heart

confession:  as my ex said years ago in reference to penelope cruz, “i would watch her knit.”  this is how i feel about maggie gyllenhaal.  first saw her in donnie darko, playing against her brother jake but ultimately saved by him, then came secretary, the subversive mary gaitskill (love) short story adaptation with james spader before he got old and fat (now, i’m jealous), then adaptation, casa de los babys, mona lisa smile (wry but heart of gold, best role in the movie), criminal, happy endings (singing), sherry baby (rough), stranger than fiction (the baker) , the dark knight–the love interest who reassures batman she’s ok as she waits to die….she’s an interesting cookie.  real life, married to peter sarsgaard (also cool), living in brooklyn with their daughter ramona, did the miu miu ad campaign as her star was rising and the agent provocateur one after she had her daughter (exceptions to my no more celebrities in fashion, please, rule) and today i’m going to go see her in crazy heart playing opposite jeff bridges.  as a rule, i am not a fan of country music but that is not what the film is about, jeff bridges has only gotten increasingly compelling as an actor, and once i saw t. bone burnett’s name attached to the project–the texan musician and music producer behind projects such as “o brother, where art thou” and “walk the line”– it was guaranteed i’d be going.  i think all of us have these star affinities–like, yea, she’s be someone with whom i’d like to grab some drinks.  she takes risks in her roles, candid shots show her running around new york in flats looking a little messy and normal, moved here as a teenager and has officially set up camp now in my own hood with her little indie family.  i just get it.  she’s not a classically pretty girl, seems to smirk as much as smile, and talks about books more than designers in interviews.  apparently, people are making a fuss about the age difference in the film and while i’m as tired as anyone of seeing the young woman with the old, paunchy man, again, this is not what the story is about. for more on the backstory with t. bone burnett and the film, see this article from the nytimes, the village voice review, or maggie talking about life in brooklyn recently in nymag.  all photos copyright original ownership

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