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Critiques/reviews

Message  Luce le Jeu 31 Mai 2018 - 7:25

La critique de Variety, le 30 mai 2018 Cool
Spoiler:
The mega-rich deserve just a bit of our sympathy.

At least, that’s the idea underpinning “Succession,” the new drama created by comedy writer Jesse Armstrong (the U.K.’s “Peep Show”) and executive produced by Will Ferrell and Adam McKay (the Oscar-winning writer and director of “The Big Short”). The show assays Logan Roy (Brian Cox), the Scottish-born head of media and entertainment conglomerate Waystar Royco, and his four children, sharp-elbowed beasts, all of whom aren’t content merely with being wealthy. They want a bit of the power that Logan is unwilling to cede, and their inability to wrest it from him is both comic and, in moments, tragic.

Any resemblances to a certain other foreign-born media magnate are likely no coincidence. (Armstrong is the author of an unproduced screenplay titled Murdoch.) But the family dynamic, at least, feels original. Along with a hippie-ish son from a first marriage (Alan Ruck, neglected by his family but given some of the best material by his show), the Roys comprise Kendall (Jeremy Strong), reasserting his birthright as a corporate superstar after having been derailed by addiction; Roman (Kieran Culkin), who hides sharp ambition behind diffident, dissolute wit; and Siobhan (Sarah Snook), striking out on her own as a political consultant but still entangled in the family’s drama. That drama comes fast and furious, as the show transpires largely in the wake of a medical incident that sidelines Logan, even as he remains the head of a corporation that more closely resembles a cult of personality.

The show’s strengths and weaknesses come hand-in-hand; its pulpy willingness to be its silliest self can be great fun, but can also transport a show that often tries to say something real about the hazards of generational wealth into too-easy comedy, or fantasy. I admit I rolled my eyes whenever someone referred to Siobhan by her family nickname, “Shiv.” (It’s too on the nose for a sharp competitor who plays by prison-yard rules.) And Roman is a character of whom we likely see more than we need; his relentless bon mots begin to feel curdled after a while. The point, that a certain kind of blase, seen-it-all rich kid can too easily confuse cruelty for wit, is amply made. But others of the family’s interactions are stilted in a manner that serves the show. That no character seems to understand how to talk to any other makes sense; their discomfort with one another is the result of a climate of mutual suspicion and antipathy.

Generally, though, the show delivers on its promise of soapy interactions between family members for whom money has complicated everything. Kendall holds his siblings — his competitors — at arm’s length, while Siobhan’s impending marriage to a fast-climbing Waystar executive (Matthew Macfadyen, a sleazy standout) is haunted by the question of whether it’s a love match or a mutually beneficial corporate merger. Aspects of the show play a bit like the high-finance camp of Showtime’s “Billions,” but reinterpreted through HBO’s prestige-y filter; the show has the skittering camera movements and the pounding, inescapable score of a show with greater ambitions than just documenting one clan’s ludicrous devotion to making one another unhappy.

“Succession,” indeed, is at its best, and its most purely enjoyable, when it pushes past the temptation to be fun alone. The leonine Cox, for instance, sets a tone of family ferocity that’s engaging because it’s great, not just indulgent. Each family member follows his lead in their own deranged way, particularly Macfadyen, who brings into each scene an aura of menace and the stench of impostor’s flop sweat. This show’s core audience, those who thrill to the misdeeds of the powerful, is likely to find and embrace it, as “Billions'” has. But I wish this season had delivered a bit more nourishment at the banquet. One thread, not yet fully developed, involves Roy’s control of his assets’ political messaging; we see protesters raging against the dissension he sows and a bit of his own hard-right views. I craved a further sense of what it means to have his kind of power — and why the succession matters for all of us, for reasons beyond which character gets to lord over the rest.

What we see of the Roys’ power tends to come through their interactions with functionaries and underlings, whom they boss around and maltreat in ways that bring to mind how thrilling and how wearying “Game of Thrones” would be if it only featured the Lannisters. In the first episode, at a family softball game, Roman offers the gamekeeper’s young son a million-dollar check should he make a home run; once he’s tagged out by the adults, the scion tears the check up in front of him. It’s not easy being rich, sure, but it’s a lot easier than not being rich — or than caring about the travails of the wealthy, spoiled, and ultimately unpleasant.

TV Review: 'Succession' on HBO


Sur Matthew Macfadyen, visiblement remarqué par l'auteur de l'article Very Happy

the show delivers on its promise of soapy interactions between family members for whom money has complicated everything. Kendall holds his siblings — his competitors — at arm’s length, while Siobhan’s impending marriage to a fast-climbing Waystar executive (Matthew Macfadyen, a sleazy standout) is haunted by the question of whether it’s a love match or a mutually beneficial corporate merger.
“Succession,” indeed, is at its best, and its most purely enjoyable, when it pushes past the temptation to be fun alone. The leonine Cox, for instance, sets a tone of family ferocity that’s engaging because it’s great, not just indulgent. Each family member follows his lead in their own deranged way, particularly Macfadyen, who brings into each scene an aura of menace and the stench of impostor’s flop sweat.
Cannot wait ! Wink
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Message  Luce le Ven 1 Juin 2018 - 4:28

La critique de Indiewire (1 juin 2018)
‘Succession’ Review: Adam McKay’s Big Business HBO Drama Steadily Develops Into Black Comedy Gold
Come for the incisive takedown of white collar culture, stay for Matthew Macfadyen's brilliant (and bizarre) comic turn
.
Very Happy

...But the real scene-stealer is Tom, played by the always great Matthew Macfadyen. As Shiv’s longterm partner and an employee at the Roy family company, Macfadyen gets not only a comedic turn, but a bizarre comedic turn. Tom is a different person to everyone. At work, he’s a people pleaser to his bosses, who are also his would-be father- and brothers-in-law. Macfadyen maintains a “I can take anything with a smile” look for such dismissive assaults it’s impressive he can make it convincing — but he does. With those underneath him, mainly a new-hire (and family cousin) named Greg (Nicholas Braun), he’s as cruel and rude as his bosses are to him (the “Chain of Screaming” from “How I Met Your Mother” comes to mind). With his girlfriend, he’s silly and romantic; he’s charming, even.

So, which one is the true Tom? Is he a company climber, only in his relationship for its connections? Or is he a St. Paul simpleton, in love with a woman but corrupted by her family? Or is he a mix of the two? Similar questions can be asked of the series itself: Is it a condemnation of corporate greed and its pervasive destruction of America, or is it an engaging family story about children extricating themselves from a toxic upbringing?

It could be both, and often is. After six episodes, “Succession” stops feeling like chunks of it are working and starts churning out more and more addictive content. Mysteries are building over time, but there are immediate conflicts that work just as well in the show’s present. The humor starts to spring up unexpectedly, enlivening the narrative instead of saving it. So rather than wish for something to be cut down and fit into an old box, delight in watching this witty drama or black comedy grow into something new.

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Message  Luce le Mar 5 Juin 2018 - 13:52

Vulture (NY Mag) (3 juin 2018)

Even characters who seem extraneous develop more and more layers as the series progresses. Shiv’s fiancé, Tom (Matthew Macfadyen), seems at first like a sycophantic bonehead. And he is. But as played by Macfadyen, he also reveals more sinister ways of using people: He’s a coward who can suddenly shock you by turning into a snake, as seen when he worms his way into a bigger title at Waystar Royko.
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Message  Luce le Mer 13 Juin 2018 - 13:56

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Message  Luce le Sam 16 Juin 2018 - 22:15

The Wall Street Journal (31 mai)
‘Succession’ Review: A Family at War
Shiv has her fiancé, Tom, hugely ambitious—he’s been given a job at Waystar—intelligent, and utterly craven in the presence of the illustrious Roy family, including his future wife. Matthew Macfadyen is impeccable as Tom—at once innocent and manipulative, pathetic and vindictive, and the source of some of the show’s most delectable humor as he grovels his way into the bosom of the family.

He feels secure only in the presence of another peripheral character bent on making his way into the Roys’ enterprise.

The New York Times (1 Juin 2018)
Review: In HBO’s ‘Succession,’ the Family That Preys Together
Meanwhile, a second set of performers, in their own connected but distinct plots, provide the comic relief: Alan Ruck as the oldest sibling, son of Roy’s first wife, who makes a show of staying out of the business while sticking his nose in wherever he can; Nicholas Braun as a bumpkin cousin who stumbles into a role at the company; and especially Matthew Macfadyen as the sister’s fiancé, a feckless suck-up out of a Waugh novel who’s Mr. Armstrong’s most original creation.
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Message  Luce le Mer 27 Juin 2018 - 12:54

The Ringer ( 25 juin 2018)

Cousin Greg—Sweet Cousin Greg—Is the Only Non-sociopath in HBO’s ‘Succession’
And now he may have been poisoned
It is impossible to discuss Cousin Greg without dwelling on the peculiar dynamic between Greg and Tom—a relationship so hyperbolic and surreal that it must elicit distress and confusion among viewers. In every encounter, Tom pranks and bullies Greg, and then flatters and encourages him in the same breath. As the cowering subject of Tom’s slapstick psy-ops campaign, Greg clings to Tom if only because his angry cousin’s perverse affection is the only substantial attention the Roy family spares him. The two men, Greg and Tom, are the two primary Succession characters who lack the Roy family name, and their subsequent insecurities bind them as strange opposites in violent coordination. Tom is the sad bastard, and Greg is his punching bag. They’re both worse for the wear.

Vanity Fair (1 juin 2018)

HBO’s Rich-Family-in-Peril Drama Succession Has a Troubling Allure
The series, about a media mogul who is not not Rupert Murdoch, may win you over in spite of yourself.

Siobhan’s got a real weaselly goober of a fiancé, Tom, played with jumpy energy by a terrific Matthew Macfadyen. We may buy neither his nor Snook’s American accents, but their scenes have a layered, thoughtful charge nonetheless.
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Message  Luce le Dim 1 Juil 2018 - 11:41

The Ringer (29 jui, 2018)
The Best Performances of 2018—So Far
Matthew Macfadyen
To begin: Hats off to whoever watched Pride & Prejudice and Howards End and thought, “There he is—that’s my sociopathic new parks director.” Matthew Macfadyen, king of the Joe Wright period piece and our Best Mr. Darcy to Date, has typically been stuck in very English roles, with the waistcoats and the restrained dialogue to match. No more. Succession, the HBO drama about a Murdoch-like media empire, puts Macfadyen in the role of Tom, future son-in-law, corporate cog, and one of several emotionally stunted 30-something men beating their chests at each other for the patriarch’s attention. As Tom, Macfadyen is breathtaking: ambitious, goofy, petty, unstable, with a bonus psychosexual war waged against fellow interloper Cousin Greg. The performance is a testament to Macfadyen’s range, and to the comedic powers of Truly Terrible People Who Have It Coming. If only the real world were so simple. —Amanda Dobbins
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Message  Luce le Mar 3 Juil 2018 - 20:59

IndieWire (3 juillet 2018)
‘Succession’: Matthew Macfadyen Is a Sight to See, No Matter What You Believe About His Mysterious Character
Alternatively charming and cruel, lovable and fucking weird, Macfadyen's Tom Wamsgans —Wamsgans! — is a spellbinding presence in the HBO drama.

... For a man who’s best known for period pieces like “Pride & Prejudice,” “Anna Karenina,” and “Howards End,” his modern-day man is a thing to behold.
Tout l'article est ici :
Spoiler:
[Editor’s Note: The following contains slight spoilers for “Succession” Season 1, through Episode 5, “I Went to Market.”]

You know Tom Wamsgans is a special character when he throws Greg into the death pit. OK, honestly, you probably knew Tom Wamsgans was a special character the second you realized his last name is “Wamsgans,” an unspeakably perfect Midwestern surname, but the death pit — as with all of Tom’s petty interactions with Greg — encapsulates so much of what makes Tom a riveting presence in HBO’s “Succession.”

An upper-level employee of the Roy family’s media conglomerate, Matthew Macfadyen’s character knows he shouldn’t tell anyone his newfound secret, for risk of spreading the company-killing intel he’s acquired, but he can’t resist dropping a load on his recently acquired human punching bag, Greg (played by Nicholas Bruan, who proves to be a gold-level reactions repository). Laughing like a Bond villain while claiming he’s “fucked forever,” Tom proceeds to confess everything to his low-level inferior, inviting disdain, empathy, and fear — all wrapped with a comic bow — in just a three-minute scene.

But it’s more than a strange encounter; Tom is a weird fucking dude. In previous episodes, “Succession” has shown Tom as a fiancé so supportive he’s submissive; he’s a loving, invested, if slightly twisted partner to Shiv (Sarah Snook), and those scenes make this one all the stranger. He’s like two different people depending on who he’s with: Shiv or Greg. Each persona is so strong, it invites the audience to think, “That’s the real Tom.” So what is it that drives Tom? What is he up to? How did we get here, at a place where Macfadyen’s character represents as enticing a secret as anything offered in HBO’s grand upcoming mystery, “Sharp Objects”?

Who is this Tom Wamsgans?
The easy explanation for Tom is he’s a gold digger; he loves the Roy family so much, he’s convinced himself he’s in love with Shiv. His work is his life because he’s made his personal life into his work. Just look at Tom, sitting in the hospital patiently picking at a piece of cake while everyone around him tears themselves apart over Logan’s impending demise. He’s got a thumbs up locked-and-loaded for Roman, who honestly couldn’t care less what Tom’s doing.

But that’s OK. Tom will take a boatload of shit from his current bosses and would-be brothers-in-law and then throw that shit in the face of those underneath him. In the “death pit” episode, “Sad Sack Wasp Trap” (what a title, by the way), Tom is a victim and a monster. He pulls Greg into the pit and then makes Greg thank him for it. “You’re family,” Tom says, when Greg says he “might not like it in the death pit,” and for as much as Tom is using that word as a bullying tactic, he also believes it. He’d just tried to tell Kendall (Jeremy Strong), his boss and future brother-in-law, only to be given a similar, if more distancing, speech on loyalty.

“You know what my dad always said?” Kendall tells Tom. “He’d say he loved all his employees, but he particularly loved the ones who ate the shit for him and he never even knew it.” Tom will eat that shit — with “a knife and a fork and some hollandaise,” apparently. Kendall knows it, and Tom knows it. They both even know that, despite his occasional outbursts, Tom is OK with eating the shit, sauce or no. Tom has his eye on the prize: a long, wealthy life with his bride-to-be and the Roy media empire.

In fact, it’s the level of shit Tom is willing to shovel directly into his mouth that makes it easier to believe his relationship with Shiv is entirely motivated by her family and her family money. If he’s willing to go to such law-breaking extremes at work, why not devote his cold, money-grubbing heart to a woman who can alleviate some of the flow and maybe even boost him above-stream?

That’s where Macfadyen comes in. He and Snook share a comic repartee filled with black edges, but simple joys, as well. When Tom brings Shiv his problem, describing the secrets he knows as “zombies ready to rise up from the dead at any moment and kill me,” Macfadyen is kneeling on the back of a chair in his pink boxer shorts, pleading with his fiancé for help even as her body language makes it clear she couldn’t care less. He’s in a panic, trying to confirm his plan to tell the truth via confessional press conference with the one Roy family member who won’t immediately belittle him for having an idea at all.


But Macfadyen keeps his tone light, his terrifying words puffed up with bits of laughter. He’s selling this idea like one does when they don’t want their partner to get mad, worried, or otherwise concerned. It’s in line with most of his conversations with Shiv; in Episode 5, “I Went to Market,” when Tom recounts his mother’s reaction to his prenuptial agreement as “unconscionable,” Macfadyen puts such a delicate twist on the heated final verdict it sounds damn near cute.

Damning verbiage aside, Macfadyen is often cute. He gets down on his knees and “pays homage” to Shiv’s vagina. He naps with her during car rides. He hugs and kisses and tickles and laughs with her. Macfadyen plays his scenes with Shiv so damn lovingly and his scenes at work with so much toxicity it’s a coin flip whether he’s Machiavellian enough to lie through every romantic moment of his life or he’s a simple Minnesotan businessman who’s trying to please the impossible-to-please family of the woman he loves.


Either way, Macfadyen is bewitching as both versions of Tom, and that’s a tricky feat to pull off. Skewing too far one way or another gives away too much of the character’s secret motives (and he must have secret motives), or it runs the risk of making Tom unbelievable. Macfadyen is so convincing he stabilizes Tom as a whole person; a power-hungry and/or people-pleasing office drone who’s using his fiancé for her elite family status and/or is deeply in love with her to the point of being overtaken by her toxic father and brothers.

No matter what comes of Tom’s overarching story, he’s become a tremendous character in sheer entertainment value alone. Pondering the inner workings of his mind is as rewarding as the giddy laughs springing from Macfadyen’s lively performance. For a man who’s best known for period pieces like “Pride & Prejudice,” “Anna Karenina,” and “Howards End,” his modern-day man is a thing to behold.

Quelle reconnaissance de son travail d'acteur ! Bravo ! Very Happy
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Re: Critiques/reviews

Message  Luce le Mar 24 Juil 2018 - 10:02

Sur Decider (23 juillet 2018)
Everything you need to know about Succession lies in the fact that the youngest Roy, daughter Siobahn (Sarah Snook), is called “Shiv,” which is an incredibly obnoxious shorthand to let you know that she too, despite her beauty, is willing to backstab at will. Shiv works in politics, which puts her at odds with her dad’s business most often, but the best part of her character is that she’s engaged to Tom (Matthew Macfadyen), who is the absolute strangest and most entertaining character on the show. What is Tom’s deal??? Is he being obsequious for show? Is he working Shiv in order to get in with the family? He’s clearly (and hilariously) territorial with anyone newer to the Roy inner circle than he is; he bares his teeth at both cousin Greg (Nicholas Braun) and eldest son Connor Roy’s mistress Willa (Justine Lupe). But he’s also a complete fool and (seemingly) no match for Shiv in any way. He’s a rube, but I’d never turn my back on him, mostly because Macfadyen is so goddamn entertaining in the role.
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Re: Critiques/reviews

Message  Marina le Mar 31 Juil 2018 - 6:01

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Re: Critiques/reviews

Message  Luce le Sam 6 Oct 2018 - 23:26

Les critiques des épisodes par Decider sont positives, sauf pour le 10 ème et dernier épisode.

‘Succession’ Season Finale Recap: Crash and Burn (3 octobre2018)

Spoiler:

...After nine and three-quarters episodes of jokes about rich people’s dicks, Succession suddenly decided it’s about Chappaquiddick instead...

...But who the fuck thought this show could sustain this serious an event?

...How can we titter and chortle about the Roy clan’s latest snafu and faux pas when one of them left the scene of a fatal accident for which he was largely responsible and was blackmailed into continued silence by his father with the implicit threat that it’ll all come out should he step out of line ever again? There’s nothing, nothing about this show that can sustain that level of moral and emotional intensity, and now we’re stuck with it forever! For the duration of the series!

...This is not a weight this show can bear. No amount of great comedic acting by Matthew Macfadyen and Nicholas Braun as Tom and Greg, or entertaining rich-kid schtick by Kieran Culkin, or great acting period by Jeremy Strong, can undo it. Succession failed.
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