1. Sign-up to become a member, and most of the ads you see will disappear. It only takes 30 seconds to sign up, so join the discussion today!
    Dismiss Notice

Fosse/Verdon FX Series

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Matt Hough, Apr 6, 2019.

Tags:
  1. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    I am really looking forward to the Fosse/Verdon miniseries starting up this week on FX. Seeing previews and some clips from it make it look ambitious and well worth doing. Hope the show proves as good as the previews suggest.
     
    PMF, Jimbo64 and Hollywoodaholic like this.
  2. Message #2 of 21 Apr 7, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2019
    Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    2,823
    Likes Received:
    1,749
    Trophy Points:
    4,110
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    I'm on board, but I don't know how they can top a favorite film All That Jazz with those dance numbers. But I hear this is all about setting the record straight about how much Gwen Verdon was essential to Fosse's creative process. I gotta hand it to Rockwell and Williams to tackle these character that don't just require some facial or vocal development, but to try to even remotely assume those dancing skills. These are true artists challenging themselves, not movie stars going through the motions; so to speak.
     
    PMF, usrunnr, Jimbo64 and 3 others like this.
  3. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    The first episode covered the Sweet Charity film and the production of Cabaret in Germany with some backward glances at the young Fosse learning his trade. It's clear Gwen Verdon is going to come out of this with added glimmer to her reputation, the woman behind the successful man who didn't get nearly the credit she deserved for her contributions to his art.

    For someone who has lived and breathed these films and the upcoming Broadway shows and movies from their past that have also become a part of me during my lifetime (and having seen Verdon on stage in Sweet Charity and Chicago), the first episode was a real thrill when those strains of "Hey, Big Spender" and "Mein Heir" began to take shape. The actress playing Liza doesn't have her quirky verve and enthusiasm, but Sam and (especially) Michelle are already inching their way toward Emmys.
     
    PMF and JohnMor like this.
  4. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 1998
    Messages:
    40,682
    Likes Received:
    16,246
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Michigan
    Real Name:
    Robert
  5. Message #5 of 21 Apr 10, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2019
    Jake Lipson

    Jake Lipson Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Messages:
    6,544
    Likes Received:
    3,895
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Real Name:
    Jake Lipson
    You've only missed the first episode, and FX does a number of repeat airings throughout the week so I'm sure you can find it airing again soon to record it and catch up in time to be current for next Tuesday's second episode.

    I liked the opener to an extent, but I felt like it should have been better than it was.

    Rockwell and Williams are great, but I think the writing is all over the place. It seems to be jumping around in time for no reason. According to the preview for next week, we're going to see how they met, so why are we starting with Cabaret exactly? I don't have a problem with nonlinear storytelling if it's executed well, but in this case, it doesn't seem to be benefiting the show. I'm not sure why the creators felt that doing it in a nonlinear fashion was better than just doing it chronologically.

    I also think that the show assumes you know who the people in the scenes are, especially some of the supporting characters, instead of actually introducing them properly like you should do at the beginning of a show. Like when Hal Prince is there for a few minutes and he just says he's busy directing "Steve's new show" about a single guy and his friends. It's an offhand remark and it assumes that the viewer knows this person is Hal Prince and that he's directing Company. Because of that, a lot of it plays as inside baseball and the storytelling is really unclear in spots if you don't know these people's careers already.

    For comparison's sake, I knew less about Bette Davis and Joan Crawford and their work when Feud aired than I do about Fosse and Verdon, and yet I didn't have trouble following that at all, because the characters were introduced properly and it was clear what their motivations were and what the timeline was.

    Of course I'm going to keep watching, but the pilot did not knock me out.
     
    usrunnr likes this.
  6. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 1998
    Messages:
    40,682
    Likes Received:
    16,246
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Michigan
    Real Name:
    Robert
    I know that as I'm no rookie on those things.:)
     
    PMF and Jake Lipson like this.
  7. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    I understand Jake's point about the non-linear storytelling and lack of identification of characters (jumping back and forth in time seems to be a fad right now), but honestly I'm not sure all that many of John Q. Public are going to be interested in the lives of these two legends from another era anyway (the ratings will be interesting for sure). Broadway babies (talking Baby Boomers and the generation following who might have some interest in Fosse as a movie director) are going to be the major audience for this series, and I think they'll figure out who these other people are who are talking about other shows with no difficulty at all.
     
  8. GlennF

    GlennF Second Unit
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2013
    Messages:
    451
    Likes Received:
    341
    Trophy Points:
    110
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Real Name:
    Glenn Frost
    Liked it a lot...didn't love it. I think Williams is great and even gets the tone of Verdon's unique voice by moments. Rockwell I find too sullen and weighs the show down for me. Bob Fosse always came across as more enthusiastic and with a "boyish charm" when you saw him in interviews or movies. They have faithfully recreated the costumes and sets from the musical numbers to a T. The line-up of girls from SWEET CHARITY was almost identical to the movie.
     
  9. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    I just noticed this morning that iTunes offers the premiere episode for free if you want to use that venue to view it.
     
    Robert Crawford likes this.
  10. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 1999
    Messages:
    19,292
    Likes Received:
    1,545
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Gulf Coast
    Real Name:
    Tony D.
    Doesn’t the FX app have this up?
     
  11. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    Episode 2 deals with two basic timelines: the meeting of Fosse and Verdon in the rehearsal hall for Damn Yankees and their choreographing "Whatever Lola Wants" right then and there (and naturally the subsequent working on the show with some highlights from it) and the end of their marriage when Gwen leaves him after the Cabaret shoot.

    Wonderful interplay between the two leads. I am so impressed with their performances. Neither is really a dancer but they are giving marvelous insinuations as dancers.
     
    JohnMor and Hollywoodaholic like this.
  12. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    Episode 3 finds Bob and Gwen struggling in their work apart from one another: Gwen frustrated to act in a straight play Children, Children and Bob burning the candle at both ends as usual trying to be inspired in editing Cabaret and coming up with ideas for an opening number for Pippin. We also got a taste of Gwen's early life of abuse and unfulfillment until her unexpected and stunning success as the featured dancer in Can-Can.

    We're halfway through the limited series now so I hope we're going to get some glimmers of Gwen and Bob's hits New Girl in Town and Redhead.
     
    PMF and JohnMor like this.
  13. Hollywoodaholic

    Hollywoodaholic Edge of Glory?

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2007
    Messages:
    2,823
    Likes Received:
    1,749
    Trophy Points:
    4,110
    Location:
    Somewhere in Florida
    Real Name:
    Wayne
    So did teenage Gwen abandon an early baby boy? That's the gist I got from the flashbacks.
     
  14. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    I believe so, yes.
     
  15. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    Episode 4 focuses on the creation of Pippin and covers Fosse's incredible 1973 where he won an Oscar, two Tonys, and three Emmys, the only director in history to win all three major awards in a single season, only to wind up in a mental ward at the end of all that success. An interesting musical number wraps up the episode based on a medley of songs from Pippin starring several real-life characters in Fosse's life as he spirals into depression.

    The next episode appears to deal with the creation of Chicago which is great but still upsets me that Gwen's major big successes of the 1950s after Damn Yankees are being ignored. I still hope they find some way to note her celebrated turns when Fosse was the lesser lauded member of the team (though he continued to win Tonys right along either with or without Gwen as his star).
     
  16. cinemiracle

    cinemiracle Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    May 1, 2015
    Messages:
    992
    Likes Received:
    375
    Trophy Points:
    610
    Real Name:
    Peter
    Brilliant series.Waiting for episode 4 to screen.
     
    PMF likes this.
  17. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    I have to say Michelle Williams is really channeling Gwen Verdon to perfection.
     
    PMF, Filmgazer and usrunnr like this.
  18. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    Episode 5 covered the brief period after Fosse's psychiatric stay but before he put Lenny into production with Bob and Gwen quarreling over the creation of Chicago which she was desperate to do to give her something in her own wheelhouse. Again, for me Michelle Williams steals the show as the musical star without a musical.

    Judging from the very brief previews for next week's episode, it appeared to be a rehash of the plot for All That Jazz except the REAL names of shows, movies, and personalities aren't obscured in pseudonyms. We'll see. The 1980s were a real trial-by-fire for Fosse, and it would be criminal for it to be given short shrift, but the period after Damn Yankees was horribly ignored so I guess they'll fit in what they can.
     
    usrunnr likes this.
  19. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
    Reviewer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    19,929
    Likes Received:
    9,198
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    Real Name:
    Matt Hough
    The sixth episode, as expected, covered the same time period that Fosse's All That Jazz covered. Since we are dealing with real-life personalities and not fictional counterparts, we were able to see "Chita Rivera" being taught "All That Jazz" for Chicago. The episode turned out to be a real showcase episode for Sam Rockwell's Fosse, likely his Emmy submission.
     
    PMF likes this.
  20. bujaki

    bujaki Producer

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2012
    Messages:
    3,247
    Likes Received:
    2,669
    Trophy Points:
    4,110
    Location:
    Richardson, TX
    Real Name:
    Jose Ortiz-Marrero
    I agree: Rockwell was brilliant. In last week's episode Williams stole the show, particularly when singing Where Am I Going? Talk about ghosts and reincarnation...
     
    Matt Hough and PMF like this.

Share This Page