New Yorker semi-reviews ‘Julie & Julia,’ exalts Streep

Posted by · 3:48 am · July 4th, 2009

As far as I know, Nora Ephron’s “Julie & Julia” is still under a reviewing embargo, but the New Yorker’s Ariel Levy has sneakily buried a brief, incisive critique of the film at the tail of a substantial profile of Ephron. (Thanks to Jeff Wells for pointing it out.) You’ll need a subscription to read […]

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You were right, I was wrong: Guy’s final predictions

Posted by · 1:24 pm · February 21st, 2009

(Expanded thoughts and reasonings on yesterday’s list of predictions.) It’s years like 2008 when I throw my hands up and admit (albeit with great reluctance) that my family and friends have been right for the last two decades. Carla, Tom, Kim, Auntie Mavis: I give up. I am insane to care as much as I […]

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THE LISTS: Top 10 pet peeves of the 2008-2009 Oscar season

Posted by · 9:41 am · February 17th, 2009

The season is winding down this week.  The slow President’s Day holiday yesterday seemed to be more of a harbinger than a lull in the excitement.  This time next week, we’ll probably be over the fallout of the circuit and on to debating the contenders we’re likely to see a year from now. It’s a […]

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Is Amy Adams a threat after all?

Posted by · 8:43 am · February 11th, 2009

Tariq Khan thinks so. Tom O’Neil reports that the Fox News pundit is predicting a major upset by the “Doubt” star, largely on the basis of what he perceives as “soft support” for frontrunner Penelope Cruz. Before you dismiss his ideas completely, it’s worth pointing out that his track record is pretty strong — he […]

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2/11 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 5:45 am · February 11th, 2009

• The first Oscar promo pic of Hugh Jackman. [Just Jared] • David Steinberg writes up Johnny Carson’s Oscar hosting legacy. [Los Angeles Times Magazine] • David Carr ponders the lead actress race. [The Carpetbagger] • Tom O’Neil conveys a case for Amy Adams in “Doubt.” [Gold Derby] • Dave Karger needs Oscar campaigns to […]

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Pretty brave

Posted by · 1:40 pm · February 9th, 2009

Most people seem to be going along with the assumption Kate Winslet has this year’s lead actress Oscar in the bag for “The Reader.” But if anyone is nipping at her heels, it has to be Meryl Streep, whose performance in “Doubt” (however off the rails it went) has been right there, waiting to upset […]

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SANTA BARBARA: Virtuosos on the march

Posted by · 11:55 pm · January 28th, 2009

Unfortunately, “Happy-Go-Lucky” star couldn’t make it to tonight’s presentation of the Virtuoso Awards at the Lobero Theatre due to surgery recovery, but Viola Davis, Richard Jenkins, Rosemarie DeWitt, Melissa Leo and Michael Shannon were on hand to talk their roles in five of the most critically acclaimed films of the year.  James Cromwell did the […]

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Did Harvey Weinstein cost Kate the Oscar?

Posted by · 8:15 am · January 28th, 2009

For all his marketing and campaigning genius, Harvey Weinstein’s tactics have become — well, have been — a bit thuggish. In Peter Biskind’s extraordinary book “Down and Dirty Pictures,” a stunning look at the independent film world in the late 1980s and all through the 1990s, we are made privy to many of Harvey’s tantrums, eyewitness […]

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‘Slumdog,’ Penn, Streep triumph at SAG Awards

Posted by · 7:33 pm · January 25th, 2009

A list of the winners in the film categories. For more commentary and discussion, check out my live-blog here. Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture: “Slumdog Millionaire” Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role: Sean Penn, “Milk” Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role: Meryl Streep, […]

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Will SAG continue the ‘Slumdog’ sweep?

Posted by · 11:04 am · January 25th, 2009

As I anticipated, “Slumdog Millionaire” walked off with the Producers Guild of America Award last night, confirming its status as the unstoppable underdog-turned-juggernaut of this year’s Oscar race. It’s highly significant that Danny Boyle’s film managed to claim this gong, in particular; as Kris pointed out yesterday, of all voting bodies, it’s the PGA that […]

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Guessing the weekend’s guilds

Posted by · 12:13 pm · January 24th, 2009

I’ve been giving my picks out to various aggregators this weekend but haven’t bothered with a post of my own.  Go figure. I feel like the only sure thing at the SAG is Heath Ledger’s victory in the Best Supporting Actor category, but while everyone else is banking on Sean Penn and Kate Winslet in […]

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It’s the second movie

Posted by · 5:29 pm · January 21st, 2009

When Sid Ganis and Forest Whitaker step up to the podium tomorrow morning to read the list of this year’s Best Picture nominees, I think we’re all going to be listening hard to the second movie announced.  Assuming “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” is locked in (which some might argue that point believe it […]

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1/21 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 8:31 am · January 21st, 2009

• Sasha Stone chimes in with her final predictions. [Awards Daily] • As do the guys at Vulture, who are remaining loyal to “WALL-E” to the end. [Vulture] • Meanwhile, T.L. Stanley finally gives up on “Doubt.” [Gold Rush] • The venerable David Thomson plays the “will be/should be” game, with some curiously disconnected predictions. […]

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POLL: Can a Best Picture nomination for ‘The Dark Knight’ help the Oscar telecast ratings?

Posted by · 12:53 pm · January 19th, 2009

After a healthy one-week run, the majority of the readership seems to think “WALL-E” has the best show at upsetting the agreed-upon five for a Best Picture bid. “The Wrestler” and “Doubt” filled out the top three. But this week, running on the assumption that the caped Crusader will slide in after all, I thought […]

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OFF THE CARPET: Enough foreplay

Posted by · 9:59 am · January 19th, 2009

What else is there to say?  Tomorrow we’ll have a new president and the last eight years will, hopefully, start to fade away.  In four days we’ll have a fresh slate of Oscar nominees and the last four months of awards speculation will suddenly be a distant memory.  The big wheel keeps on turning. I […]

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Best Actress: a tough call

Posted by · 9:27 am · January 17th, 2009

Rarely does the lead actress category provide more suspense than leading gentlemen and rarely is it as packed with fine performances as it is this year.  I can remember years when it was a struggle to come up with five nominees for best actress, 1975 and 1992 springing to mind.  It might have less to […]

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‘Slumdog,’ ‘Button’ lead BAFTA pack with 11 nods each

Posted by · 12:20 am · January 15th, 2009

Each year, the BAFTAs never fail to find new and frustrating ways to surprise me. It wasn’t hard to guess that “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” and “Slumdog Millionaire” would come out on top here — though even as a fan of the latter film, I do wonder whether nominations for Best Production Design […]

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INTERVIEW: Amy Adams

Posted by · 11:42 am · January 14th, 2009

Amy Adams has arrived.  No “doubt” about it. Sunday she was sitting at a table with Meryl Streep, Viola Davis and John Patrick Shanley at the Hollywood Foriegn Press Association’s Golden Globe Awards where she was nominated for Best Supporting Actress, one of five nods the film received. Surrounded by major artists such as Ron […]

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