Monday, April 26, 2010

Miranda Otto

I think I've seen Miranda Otto's name recently....in some filmography. But I've forgotten where I've seen her.

Well, I shall go find out who she is....

Lord Wiki says she's yet another Lord of the Rings actor. And plus she's been in a bunch of other stuff.

Baby Miranda was born in Brisbane, on 16 December 1967. She's five months younger than Tim.

Both of Otto's parents were actors. Her mom stopped acting when her daughter was born. Her father Barry Otto still does acting. He's been in a few movies that I heard of: Strictly Ballroom, Oscar and Lucinda, 9.99, and Australia.

Lord Wiki says that Otto grew up in both Newcastle and Brisbane. Then she also spent some time in Hong Kong. This was around 1973, when her parents had separated. She would have been about six then.

Daddy Otto took care of Miranda on weekends and holidays. Lord Wiki says it was during this time with him, that Miranda developed an interest in acting.

Otto also had talent and interest in ballet. She had to give it up though, because she had a minor case of scoliosis.

She did theatre, and she did film. I'll get to the career stuff when I go to IMDb.

Otto is married to an actor named Peter O'Brien. Before that she dated another actor named Richard Roxburgh, who Lord Wiki says is known for playing villains. For some reason, that relationship received a lot of media attention. Otto didn't much enjoy being in that type of limelight.

O'Brien and Otto have a daughter named Darcey. That's the name of one of my nieces, although they spell it differently.

All right. Now I'm moving on over to IMDb.

It looks like Otto lucked out with her first role. She got the title role in a movie; Emma's War. It's about World War II; a mother takes her children from Sydney to live in the bush.

Is Emma the mother, or one of the kids? I'm trying to figure that out. Well, Otto would have been about nineteen when she made the movie. Was the movie about a young mother, or a mother with older teens?

Well, a IMDb user answers my question. He says Emma is the daughter.

In 1987, Otto did a movie called Initiation. It's an Australian film about an American teen who comes to live in the outback with his father. Then the father gets involved in the drug trade.

Here's some scenes from the movie. I was worried Otto wouldn't be in them, but she appears right away.

The American wants to see an initiation ceremony. Otto's character is trying to convince him that it's sacred, secretive, and not something they should intrude upon.

Well, there's supernatural elements in the film. Or at least there seems to be some.

In 1988, Otto appeared in a four part episode of A Country Practice. This Australian TV website says that Otto played a girl who was out of touch with the modern world.

Also in 1988, Otto was in The 13th Floor. It's a horror movie about a woman haunted by the boy that her father killed. I thought the title sounded familar to me, but I was probably thinking of the 13th Warrior.

It doesn't look like Otto played the woman. I think she was played by Lisa Hensley.

Some of the movie was filmed in Hyde Park. That's cool. Hyde Park is one of my favorite places in Australia.

A blurb in the New York Times says that Otto played the friend of the protagonist.

It looks like Otto took a break from the screen for a few years. Maybe she did more theatre?

In 1991, she was in the movie The Girl Who Came Late. An IMDb user says it's a romance involving horses. Andres Salama says the movie is often played on Argentinian television.

For the movie, Otto received an AFI nomination.

Also in 1991, Otto did another World War II movie. This was the one featuring Simon Burke; Heroes II: The Return.

In 1992, Otto was in a Gillian Armstrong movie: The Last Days of Chez Nous. It's based on a book by Helen Garner. Have I written about it before? I'm not sure. The title sounds familar, but the plot doesn't.

It's a sisterly story....family stuff. One sister has just finished a love affair in Italy. The other sister is in a marriage of convenience. I don't think Otto plays either of the sisters. Maybe she's a friend. Or maybe she's a third sister?

Otto received another AFI nomination for the film. Oh, and part of this movie was filmed in Hyde Park too.

Lord Wiki says that in the movie, the French husband of convenience falls for the other sister. Well, that's not very convenient.

Maybe it's not a husband of convenience. Lord Wiki doesn't mention that, and IMDb says it's something of a marriage of convenience. I was picturing something more official; like someone using someone to get a green card. And both parties understand it's a sham. But it might be more about people imagining they love each other, but they're truly marrying for other reasons. Someone might convince themselves they're in love, but deep down they're happy to find a guy with a wealthy family.

In 1993, Otto stared with Noah Taylor in The Nostradamus Kid. I just wrote about this the other day. Who was in it that I wrote about recently?

Ah. John Noble.

Here's a scene. We get to see Otto being all naked.

In 1995, Otto was in Sex is a Four Letter Word. It's about a dinner party where people talk about personal stuff.

Here's a video. I guess it's like a trailer. I think that's Otto at 1:06. You know, she kind of reminds me of Mia Wasikowska.

There's a lot of sex words here. I guess it's good for vocabulary building.

In 1996, Otto was in Love Serenade. Jessica Napier, from McLeod's Daughters was in it. You know, I've always thought of Napier as a Kiwi, so I figured I shouldn't write about her on this blog. But IMDb says she moved to Australia when she was nine. I think she'd probably count as an Australian.

Yeah. I think she totally counts. I'm adding her to my list.

Anyway, in Love Serenade, Otto plays a woman who works at a Chinese restaurant in a small town. A DJ moves to the town and gets involved with some of the women there.

I couldn't find a video from the movie, but I did find a song called "Love Serenade" by the Waifs. I wonder if they played the song in the movie.

In 1997, Otto was in The Well. The plot sounds confusing to me. I don't quite get it. I'll just say that Otto plays a woman living on a farm.

It's based on a book by Elizabeth Jolley. Here's a review of the book. It sounds pretty interesting; it involves an older woman obsessed and possessive of a younger woman. The story reminds me a of a book that HappyOrganist was telling me about. I think they also both involved maids. Maybe it's the same book?

No, I don't think so. They don't sound exactly the same. I think they just have a similar theme and mood.

Otto earned an AFI nomination for the film.

The next movie on the list has Sayid from Lost. This is True Love and Chaos. Hugo Weaving is in the movie, so I might have written about it when I researched him. I don't remember it.

Noah Taylor is in it too.

It sounds like a road trip type movie, one involving drugs. I doubt I'd like it.

Here's a scene from the movie. We get to see Otto singing. She sings good....if that's really her singing. She's cute.

Naveen Andrews is beautiful.

I find Hugo Weaving to be quite attractive. I think out of all the Australian actors, I find him to be the sexiest. But I don't have a crush on him. It's the kind of attraction that fades as soon as the film clip ends.

Here's Weaving singing in the movie. And it looks like Noah Taylor's character is doing heroin.

Otto was in Doing Time for Patsy Cline. I thought it was a bio-pic, but instead it's about a woman named after Patsy Cline. Otto's ex-boyfriend was in the movie. I wonder if this is where they met.

Some of the movie was filmed in Griffith, New South Wales. I wrote about that place recently, and I think I said I felt I should know it. When I saw it just now, I got a feeling again. There was this little twinge. I have no idea what it means. It could be nothing. It could be something exciting and supernatural. Maybe in an alternate universe, I live in Griffith. I hope my alternate self is happy there.

Lord Wiki says the Patsy Cline movie has flash-forwards and flashbacks. It's like Lost! And if I'm understanding things right, it sounds like it might actually have an alternate universe plot. The movie shows two possible paths/outcomes.

Here's a clip from the movie. It looks kind of cute. What interests me is they say the name Tyrone. We have an Australian friend with that name, and they pronounce the name VERY different from the way we pronounce it in America. But in this movie, it's pronounced the way Americans pronounce it. Although the movie partly takes place in Nashville. Maybe it's an American Tyrone.

In 1998, Otto was in Dead Letter Office. Otto plays a woman whose father left when she was a child. She shares her life with him via her letters. But later she finds out he never received them. I guess she tries to track him down via the dead letter department of the post office.

It reminds me of a certain popular movie that's based on a certain popular book. In the movie, the girl is dumped by her boyfriend, and his whole family moves away. We get insight into the girl's feelings as she writes emails to the ex-boyfriend's sister. Now in the book, the two have a friendship going on. So if you see the movie after reading the book, it doesn't seem too strange. But I imagine if you didn't read the book, the girl seems a bit weird. Who would write all these emails to their ex-boyfriend's sister? I asked Tim if he thought it was strange. He's seen the movies, but hasn't read the books. He said it did seem a bit odd.

According to this Aussie film website, Dead Letter Office also involves a romance. This is between Otto's character and a reclusive guy who works at the post office.

Also in 1998, Otto was in the horror movie In the Winter Dark. It involves livestock animals being killed. Once again, Otto was in a movie with her ex-boyfriend. Although back then, he wasn't an ex.

The Aussie film website says Otto plays a pregnant woman who was recently abandoned by her boyfriend.

Oh. It's based on a Tim Winton book. I don't think I've heard of this one.

Here's the trailer. It's BEAUTIFUL. I love the music in the beginning. It looks less like a horror movie, and more of a drama. Maybe it's a drama with elements of horror.

Here's a scene in the movie. It looks very sad. From what I've seen and read, I think a part of the plot deals with the older woman losing her baby to SIDS. I guess she's haunted by those memories.

The Thin Red Line was Otto's first American movie....at least from what I can see.

It's another World War II movie. Otto's not on the first page of credits, so her role might have been small.

The movie was filmed in Australia, so Otto probably didn't need to travel too far.

Here's the trailer. Maybe Otto will be in it.

Is that her at :34?

It looked like there was an Aboriginal man in the movie, so I was wondering if it took place partly in Australia. Lord Wiki says no. It takes place in Melanesia, islands in the South Pacific. There are also scenes of Melanesian children. They look less Aboriginal to me, but I could be wrong. Part of the movie was filmed on the Solomon islands. They might have gotten actors from there.

In 1999, Otto was in an American movie called The Jack Bull. It was written by John Cusack's father, and John starred in it.

It's a western. Otto's character has the same last name as Cusack's character. Maybe she played his wife? Sister?

I was thinking the movie was filmed in Australia, but it wasn't. It was filmed in Canada.

Here's the trailer. It's not the type of movie I imagine Cusack to be in.

In 2000, Otto was in Kin. It's an interracial love story. She plays a conservationist who goes to Africa, and falls in love with a black lawyer.

Here's a scene from the movie. It looks fun.

Also in 2000, Otto was in the American movie What Lies Beneath. Tim and I saw this together. I don't think either of us liked it. Well, I know I didn't like it. I'm pretty sure Tim didn't either.

I'm guessing Otto played the woman with whom Harrison Ford was having an affair.

Here's the trailer. Is that Otto at :46. If that is, I guess she's not the one that Ford is having an affair with.

The movie looks confusing. I forgot what the twist was. Maybe Lord Wiki will tell me.

He says Otto plays the neighbor. Michelle Pfeiffer's character suspects that something bad has happened to her.

Lord Wiki makes the story seem better than I remembered. I like the ending he's described.

In 2001, Otto was in an Italian movie La Volpe a Tre Zampe. It's about a boy in the 1950's, who thinks he's friends with a movie star.

Here's the trailer. I think Otto might play the movie star.

It makes me think of the Bicycle Thief....I guess because they're both Italian movies?

Otto was in a movie called Human Nature. I don't remember this movie, but it sounds good. It's written by Charlie Kaufman. I like him....or at least some of his movies. Sometimes he reminds me of myself...or at least his movies do.

Human Nature is about scientist people interested in a man raised by apes. Patricia Arquette is one of the stars. I like her. And the ape guy is from Notting Hill. I was looking at Rhys Ifan's filmography, and thought he's one of the few British actors not in a Harry Potter movie. But then I kept looking, and saw that he's going to be in part 1 of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. He's going to be Luna Lovegood's Daddy. Cool.

Otto is not on the first page of Human Nature credits. Her role might be small. Here's the trailer.

Well, Otto is in the trailer. She's even mentioned by name. So I guess her role isn't that small after all.

I personally don't think it looks as good as the other Charlie Kaufman films I've seen.

Lord Wiki says that Otto played an Australian in the film. But I guess she didn't use her Australian accent much. She played a woman who was pretending to be French.

Otto did a British miniseries called The Way We Live Now. I think it's a financial scandal type of film.

Here's a scene with Otto. I expected her to be playing a British character, but it sounds like she's from the  America's south. Her voice/accent reminds me of Lorena on True Blood.

Otto was in Lord of the Rings. In the first movie, her part is uncredited. I wonder why. She played Eowyn. I'm trying to get a handle on who she is, but Lord Wiki is just confusing me.

Here's a fan video. Maybe it will give me a clue. I just heard this song recently in another fan video. Was it a Claudia Black thing? I guess it's a popular song for YouTube montages.

I just realized that Otto looks like one of my Internet friends.

Here's a scene from an extended version of one of the movies. It has Otto and David Wenham.

In 2002, Otto was in a British horror movie called Doctor Sleep. It involves a hypnotherapist who has some kind of psychic vision.

Here's the trailer. The hypnotherapist is the guy from ER. I don't see Otto, but that other girl is the one who does the voice of Moaning Myrtle in the Harry Potter movies.

Also in 2002, Otto was in Julie Walking Home. It's about a woman who seeks out a healer to save her son from cancer.

Agnieszka Holland is the director. I know I've seen her name before. What has she done?

Europa Europa! I remember that movie I liked it.

Here's a scene from Julie Walking Home. It looks like a beautiful movie, and thought-provoking. The healer asks Miranda's character if she loves him for himself, or for the fact that he can heal her son. Sometimes love is complicated, and it's hard to know if what we feel is genuine. We're often attracted to people for specific reasons. We may be intrigued by their religion or occupation. They might have a talent that intrigues us. We might like their family. We might be attracted to their ethnicity or accent. If we're drawn in because of these things, does that mean the love isn't real? But then these are not just trivial aspects of a person. Sometimes they make up a large part of who someone is. It's all very complicated. I was going to write some deep thing about how we can distinguish real love from interest-based attraction....but I don't think it's possible. I think there's no true definition of real love. It's all tangled up into the fake stuff, and it's quite hard to untangle.

In 2002 and 2003, we had the sequels to Lord of the Rings. It looks like in these, Otto was in the credits. I'm not going to go into it too much. I think I've had enough of that movie for now. Plus, I'm sure I'll soon run into another Australian who is in those movies.

In 2003, Otto was in Danny Deckchair. It's about a guy who uses helium balloons to float away in his lawn chair. Maybe this is where the balloon boy's family got their inspiration.

Rhys Ifans and Otto are reunited for this movie. I guess Ifans plays an Australian here.

Here's a fan video for the movie.

Lord Wiki says the movie was inspired by an American named Larry Walters. In 1982, he floated a bit around California with weather balloons. Here's a news report about it. It's eerily sad because before the Walters clip, they talk about the Challenger's upcoming launch in January. The other sad thing is Walters eventually commited suicide. I wonder why. Well, I hope he's at peace now.

In 2004, Otto was in In My Father's Den. It's about a war journalist who befriends a teenager, and things become messy when she disappears. It sounds very thought-provoking. I guess instead of dealing with forbidden love, this one deals with forbidden friendship. A grown man is friends with a teenage girl, and it's hard to have that type of friendship without people getting suspicious.

Here's the trailer for the movie. And I just read Lord Wiki's description of the plot. It sounds really good, but sad. Otto doesn't play a very sympathetic character in this...at least from what I read.

Otto was in a miniseries about Lindy Chamberlain; Through My Eyes. I'm guessing it was based on Chamberlain's book.

Otto won a Silver Logie for the movie.

I want to read Chamberlain's book. Her story fascinates me. How many times have people joked about her baby going missing? Her tragedy has become part of pop culture.

From what I've read, the general consensus these days is that she's innocent. But I won't go too much into it. I think I have her on the list. I'll blab on and on about it then.

Here's a scene from the miniseries. I'm really liking it so far. I love what Chamberlain says regarding the truth and innocence. It means nothing in terms of public opinion, so why worry about what people think of you?

This is very sad.

The world of guilt and innocence is such a scary one. How many innocent people are in prison right now....blamed for the death of someone they loved and would never hurt. And how many guilty people are walking around free?

Otto was in Flight of the Phoenix with Dennis Quaid. It's about people who have a plane crash, and land in the desert. They realize their only chance of survival is rebuilding the plane.

Here's the trailer. Uh...the sound is totally off on that one. I'm going to try and find another.

Here's another. It has some annotations added by the guy who uploaded it. But I guess that's okay.

Wow. That looks action-packed. I wonder if I'd like it.

The movie is a remake of a 1965 movie.

One of Otto's co-stars in the movie is Giovanni Ribisi. He's a Scientologist. I wonder if he made any attempts to recruit Otto. Then after that movie, Otto worked with Tom Cruise in War of the Worlds. Did he ever try to convince her to join the club?

The trivia page says Otto was pregnant when she offered the part. She turned it down at first, but Spielberg convinced her to stay. He had her pregnancy written into the movie. That's cool.

Here's the trailer. Well, it LOOKS pretty good. Was it? Did any of you see it? I don't think I did, but I kind of remember maybe watching a little bit of it. I may be thinking of another movie.

In 2007, Otto worked on the TV show The Starter Wife. I remember hearing of that. I didn't realize it was an Australian-American production.

There are some other Australians on the show: Judy Davis, Gigi Edgley, Bethany Whitmore, Trilby Glover, and probably more.

Stephen Moyer from True Blood was in it! Awesome.

The show was filmed in Queensland.

Lord Wiki is saying that The Starter Wife was a miniseries, and then a TV show. Otto was in the miniseries, but not the TV show.

For some reason, I thought the show was about sports. Isn't there a term starter in baseball? Maybe not.

Anyway, it's not about baseball. It's about Hollywood. A woman gets dumped by her husband when he finds a younger woman.

It sounds like a fairly good show.

Here's a scene with Otto. And I need to watch a scene with Stephen Moyer.

It looks like a really great show. It's too bad it's not still on, especially since it was nominated for a bunch of Emmy's. I guess that's life. We can have something really great on our hands, yet we still lose.

Otto did another TV series in 2008. This was Cashmere Mafia. It's about four female friends in NYC. I guess it's Sex and the City recycled.

Here's a scene.

It doesn't much appeal to me.

In 2009, Otto was in a TV movie called A Marriage. I bet it was about a marriage.

She was in In Her Skin with Guy Pearce. The last time I wrote about this movie, it hadn't been released yet. At least I don't think it had. It's similar to another Otto movie; In My Father's Den. Both involve a missing teenager.

Then we have Blessed. It's another thing about lost children....runaway teens.

Here's the trailer. It makes me want to cry. It looks so beautiful, but incredibly sad.

Otto has two upcoming movies.

One is South Solitary, an Australian movie about a lighthouse. It makes me think of Pete's Dragon.

Then there's Get it at Goode's, which is about a salon at a Sydney department store.

Now I'm going to read the trivia page on IMDb about Otto.

They say Otto gave up a medical career to pursue acting.

She learned sword fighting and horseback riding for Lord of the Rings. I think it would be awesome to learn sword fighting.

In the quote section, Otto talks about how people say you should take a photograph of yourself when pregnant. She says she has a whole movie. In some ways, her daughter was in the movie. That's cute.

Here's an interview with Otto regarding Blessed. I couldn't find anything on YouTube, but the MSN site has something. She looks so much like my internet friend. It's kind of scary.

Otto is asked whether motherhood has taught her stuff that she brings to her roles. She says yes, but for Blessed, it's out of her league, because the movie is about teens. I think that's an important point.

Childless people can be incredibly annoying when they judge parents, especially when they think they understand more about parenting and kids than parents do. You can't truly understand parenting unless you have children of your own. At least I don't think so. Maybe one day I'll find a parent who says they knew as much about parenting before the kid was born.

Anyway, I think the same blindness occurs when you don't have children of a certain age. I can relate to being pregnant, having a baby, dealing with the toddler years, and all the years up to about age eight. I have no earthly idea what it's like to have a teen. I can guess what it's like. I can make plans. I can judge parents of teens regarding their choices. But I really would be talking out of my ass.

They talk about Otto's daughter. Otto is asked if her daughter thinks it's strange that her mom does this acting stuff. Does she think all adults do it. I like Otto's answer. The kid doesn't think acting is strange because that's what kids do. They play. They act.

Oh, and I love this. They talk about how Otto's daughter participates in acting workshops. She supports her daughter being an actress, just as her own father supported her. I was wondering though....what if the kid doesn't want to be an actor? Otto says that even if the child doesn't choose it as a career, she can use the creative skills for other stuff.

Anyway, I'm tired. I think I'm going to go to sleep soon. Good night.

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