Where Are They Now: BROTHERS & SISTERS

bsIt’s been almost 3 years since we last saw the beloved Walker family. Sarah was walking down the aisle with her new, biological father Nick Brody (who had rekindled an old romantic relationship with Nora). Her marriage to Luc would be a beautiful moment to end the dramatic tale of these Brothers & Sisters (even though the show’s fate was still up in the air). Once we knew that the series was over, we could easily accept the happy endings hinted at for these characters—and easily ignore the health scare that Kitty faced in the finale.
Having just rewatched the entire series (available on Netflix), I am once again at a loss. How to cope without the Walkers in my life yet again? Obviously copious amounts of red wine (in exceedingly large wine glasses) are called for. But during the Oscars telecast I noticed two stars of the series (Sally Field and Calista Flockhart) and began to wonder what all the Walkers were up to now.

SALLY FIELDSally Field earned her third Oscar nomination last year (for Lincoln), and popped up at the Oscars this year as a presentee—and even in one of the hero montages (for her Oscar-winning role in Norma Rae). She doesn’t have much on her roster right now, though. In 2014 you will only find the Walker matriarch in the new Spider-Man sequel (reprising her role as Aunt May).

600full-rachel-griffithsRachel Griffiths has continued to enjoy life on the small screen, albeit far more briefly than her past, more successful series (Six Feet Under, Brothers & Sisters), with NBC’s 2013 summer show Camp (which was not renewed for a second season). She’s now returning to her Aussie roots starring in the TV movie Stalking Julia (an Australian political drama) and joining the cast of House Husbands (an Australian TV series I know absolutely nothing about—but I’ll just wait until the US remakes it). The oldest Walker daughter (and also, technically, the oldest of the Brody brood) can also be seen on the big screen in (briefly) Saving Mr. Banks and, next Friday, in Patrick: Evil Awakens (a film about a murderous boy now in a coma).

CF-calista-flockhart-20576156-2560-1919Calista Flockhart has been nonexistent since getting knocked up by young Seth. (Unless you count a guest voice role on the animated series The Penguins of Madagascar, which I do not.) Instead, she has been spending her time keeping her body in shape (to stave off the ravishments of age) and hanging out with her hubby Harrison Ford (hence why she was at the Oscars).

600full-balthazar-gettyBalthazar Getty may have been (blessedly) written off the show halfway through, but he’s still a Walker (no matter how insufferable he is). Getty has spent his freedom from the show trying to build up a movie career. He starred in one of last year’s film about Jack Kerouac, Big Sur (Kerouac was pretty big last year, huh?). This year he’ll be in the crime drama The Judge (also starring Vera Farmiga, Robert Downey Jr., and Leighton Meester) and is rumored to be in the crime drama A Fall From Grace; and in 2015 he is signed on to be in the film #Horror (with Chloe Sevigny, Natasha Lyonne, and Timothy Hutton). If you can’t wait for his films to be available, you can brave the Showtime series House of Lies this Sunday when Getty makes a guest appearance.

Matthew-Rhys-007Matthew Rhys has made the biggest TV comeback, starring next to the impeccable Keri Russell in the FX series The Americans (which just came back for its second season). Before returning to American TV, however, Rhys spent some time back in his homeland of Britain, working on some films and miniseries adapted from classic literature—The Mysteries of Edwin Drood and The Scapegoat (in which he plays a snobby British aristocrat and his poor doppelganger—it’s streaming on Netflix if you really feel the need to check it out). You can also see the middle Walker brother portray Mr. Darcy in the BBC adaptation of Death Comes to Pemberley (which has already aired across the pond and will air in the US sometime this year).

600full-dave-annableDave Annable has had a harder time establishing himself after saying goodbye to Justin Walker. His bad luck with TV (which started with Reunion in 2005) repeated itself with 666 Park Avenue, getting canceled amidst its first season. His film career seems to be a non-starter as well. I don’t know anyone who saw him star in the Katharine McPhee rom-com You May Not Kiss the Bride (2011) or make a smaller appearance in the Anna Faris rom-com What’s Your Number? (2011).

As far as the other Walkers and those who love them go, you’ll be hard-pressed to find many of them. Deceased Robert McCallister (Rob Lowe), of course, has maintained a high profile, starring in Behind the Candelabra and Parks & Recreation (he’s even tackling Ulyssses S. Grant in the upcoming miniseries To Appomattox). Former Walker Rebecca Harper (Emily VanCamp) has shot to even further pop culture stardom by headlining in her ABC series Revenge (taking over the subway ads that blistering 2011 summer after B&S ended), and she’s even breaking into the Marvel-verse in this year’s Captain America sequel. Sarah’s new spouse Luc (Gilles Marini) is holding his own with a recurring guest stint on 2 Broke Girls (among other random TV appearances). Little, obnoxious Paige (Kerris Dorsey) can be found starring on the Live Schreiber Showtime series Ray Donovan. However, her brother Cooper’s (Maxwell Perry Cotton) biggest role has been playing a young Matt Damon in last year’s Elysium. Everyone else has barely made a blip on the pop culture radar, but you never know when the Walkers will rise again like an unknown illegitimate child.

LUKE MacFARLANE, SALLY FIELD, ROB LOWE, EMILY VanCAMP, CALISTA FLOCKHART, RACHEL GRIFFITHS, DAVE ANNABLE, MATTHEW RHYS, SARAH JANE MORRIS, PATRICIA WETTIG, BALTHAZAR GETTY, RON RIFKIN

Advertisements

“Lincoln” Is More Historical Bore Than Illuminating Biopic

Lincoln-posterReferring to Steven Spielberg’s film Lincoln as a biopic is a bit of a misnomer. The film’s action is centered around the final months of President Abraham Lincoln’s life as he fights to get the anti-slavery amendment passed.  Following the political machinations involved with the amendment, Lincoln feels more like an extended episode of The West Wing than a biopic of Lincoln’s life.

Because it’s a Spielberg film, he’s managed to accrue an all-star cast. Daniel Day-Lewis astutely plays Lincoln, vanishing into the character and easily managing the monologues screenwriter Tony Kushner wrote. Sally Field earnestly plays his wife Mary Todd, and Joseph Gordon-Levitt brings a little depth to his rebellious son Robert. Among the Washington politicos are a variety of names you will most likely recognize: David Strathairn, Hal Holbrook, John Hawkes, Lee Pace, and Tommy Lee Jones (and keep your eyes peeled for a special appearance by Girls’ Adam Driver).

When the politicking doesn’t get too obtuse, the plotting for votes can be somewhat entertaining. The film also highlights some of the family drama that Lincoln was dealing with at the time as well, which has its compelling moments. But, overall, this is a fairly dull film. Kushner’s writing is more suited for a stage adaptation of the material. Monologues—both political and personal—abound; but the cinematography leaves these speeches feeling stagnant. (And wouldn’t we rather see Day-Lewis win a Tony instead of yet another Oscar?)

Even if you can manage to get engaged in the struggle for amendment votes, the big vote occurs around the 2-hour mark of this 150-minute film. That leaves a full 30 minutes to show a ponderous Lincoln, slowly moving to his inevitable assassination (which is as equally anticlimactic as the amendment vote). Lincoln is one of the most over-hyped films of this Awards season, and the one you’re least likely to see. And you might as well keep it that way, unless you’d like to pay $14 for a nap.