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(June 2002)

Acting! Singing! Dancing!
Toni ColletteLet us now sing the praises of Toni Collette! Damn, this woman can act. More than just a movie star, which she is, she is an ACTOR! We first saw her, 40 pounds overweight, in Muriel’s Wedding (1994) and we were blown away with her incredibly moving performance. With facial expressions and body language, you felt the bottled inner turmoil this poor young woman suffered with under the oppression of her domineering father. Sadness and joy; the depths of despair and moments of happiness that absolutely transported you. All done in a way that only the most talented of actors can do.

We next noticed her in the terrific ghost story The Sixth Sense (1999). She was the quintessential working mom raising her hyper-sensitive boy alone. She was so “American” that you’d be hard-pressed to admit the woman was from Australia. She received great notices for the solid acting job she did. She grounded the story between her son and the supernatural. All done in a way that only the most talented of actors can do.

Recently we saw Toni Collette in the currently running, suspense-filled character study Changing Lanes. She plays a legal assistant in love with her married and morally-challenged young boss. Again, she’s totally submerged in the role and if you hadn’t seen her name in the credits, you’d hardly know it was her. As the hard-bitten but loyal assistant, you see her almost unrequited love all over her face. It’s a pleasure to watch this actor work and we at The Toast predict big things for her in the future. You watch.

Georges Guétary
Georges GuétaryThis is one of those eternal questions that American movie lovers always ask. Especially lovers of great American musicals. Georges Guétary was a French entertainer of immense talent. Singer, dancer, actor. We most remember him performing the show-stopping song Stairway To Paradise in the 1951 musical An American in Paris. That’s saying something. A show-stopping performance in a movie with Gene Kelly, Leslie Caron and Oscar Levant. The question is: why didn’t this giant of an entertainer make more American movies?

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