My Favourite Film of 1975.



Film There's a weird moment right at the end of The Adjustment Bureau which I'm about to spoil, so here's a trailer for The Brother's McMullen to cover the gap between you getting to the end of this sentence and allowing your eyes to look somewhere else for long enough to close this page or click somewhere else or whatever it is that you need to do.



If you're a film fan and watching The Adjustment Bureau and you've been paying attention you'll notice that actress Jennifer Ehle from Pride and Prejudice as well as a great many other things plays a bar person who interacts meaningfully with Matt Damon's political candidate figure. As the film spins towards its climax and there's much talk of a chairman and the Matt and Emily Blunt, his dancing love interest burst onto the roof of the said bureau, you fully expect Ehle to burst wander through. Instead, Anthony Mackie brings the news they'd hoped for and says that the chairman isn't who they might expect and that it's different for everybody.  People have been a bit sniffy about the film but I find it enchanting, clever and witty, and a lot of it has to do with this climax.

Apparently there was originally a chairperson who was supposed to be in the film, but it was decided, either by George Nolfi or the producers, reports differ, not to pin down a single figure in case audience members had conjured their own ideas.  Except Ehle wasn't that either - actress Shohreh Aghdashloo actually shot scenes including a version of this one, before being dropped during reshoots.  Yet, by having an actress as prominent as Ehle in that role, however small, and in conjunction with Mackie's character's line, we still can assume that she is the chairperson especially since she's a conduit of communication between Mackie and Damon (the note).  There's nothing in the film to say she is just as there's nothing to say that she isn't.

There are plenty of other similar one or two scene cameos or jolting appearances by prominent performers in films either because they've had a whole sub-plot cut or they were doing a jokey favour for the director ripe for filling in such blanks.  Elizabeth Perkins has a close-up on the final press conference scene in The American President and having asked in two different forums over the years (rec.arts.movies.past-films and AskMefi), no one has a clue why.  In my mind she has a whole hidden subplot as a journalist trying to discover the truth of the romance between Annette Benning and President Michael Douglas and some of the things he's referring to in that final speech are because of her attempted reporting and what we're watching is seeing her being won over.


Oh erm. There are plenty of other similar one or two scene cameos or jolting appearances by extras who look like prominent performers in films such as the woman who isn't in any way Elizabeth Perkins who has a close-up on the final press conference scene in The American President and having asked in two different forums over the years (rec.arts.movies.past-films and AskMefi), no one has a clue why.  Presumably because it wasn't her. Though seriously, look at this picture. It's not just me is it? I mean there are people on those forums who saw this person and agreed that it must be her.



Anyway, in my mind she has a whole hidden subplot as a journalist trying to discover the truth of the romance between Annette Benning and President Michael Douglas and some of the things he's referring to in that final speech are because of her attempted reporting and what we're watching is seeing her being won over. But it's not Elizabeth Perkins.  Except look at this photo from Moonlight and Valentino in 1995:



They're not that different. are they? I mean the eyebrows perhaps.  The nose.  The mouth.  Yes, alright she also looks a bit like Melanie Lynsky, but Melanie Lynskey wouldn't have been old enough.  She was only eighteen.  But that woman's older than eighteen.  Anyway, it's not either of them so let's move on.

Then there are the films in which actors were entirely cut out but you can sort of feel their presence.  Andy Garcia was in Dangerous Minds as Michelle Pfeiffer's love interest.  There are apparently a multitude of actors in the trimmings on Love Actually including David Morrissey (presumably playing another character seducing his employee so no great loss).  The always brilliant Sienna Miller has just been cut from Black Mass (Johnny Depp's apparent comeback for people who didn't understand Transcendence)  Terrance Malik is habitual about this enough that there's a listicle.   None of which explains why Merlin isn't in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.  Tim the Enchanter?  Oh purlees.

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