The Great Performances: 2001

Posted by · 6:23 pm · November 20th, 2009

In one of the weakest years in memory, not just for performances but for great films, 2001 saw Denzel Washington and Halle Berry knock “two birds out with one stone,” as the former declared on Oscar night, as two African Americans won the top acting prizes for the first time ever.  And it was difficult […]

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The Great Performances: 2000

Posted by · 7:14 pm · November 13th, 2009

Michael Douglas was robbed. The already Oscar-christened actor gave a career-best performance in 2000 in Curtis Hanson’s “Wonder Boys,” but he got no love from the Academy. Worse, his performance was easily among the five best of the year and won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association Best Actor prize. That having been said, I […]

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The Great Performances: 1997

Posted by · 8:03 am · October 23rd, 2009

1997 was a great year for actors, but a tough year for Oscar; how do you choose when there are so many deserving nominees? It’s that age-old issue that some award-worthy performances are going to be left out, which though unfair and sad, is very much part of the Academy Awards and frankly what makes […]

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WEEKLY WRAP: Foreign contenders and underdogs

Posted by · 6:18 pm · October 2nd, 2009

• The deadline for Best Foreign Language Film entries passed, as Israel and Italy bucked conventional wisdom with their selections. • Among the better-received contenders, however, were major festival prizewinners from Australia and Greece. A full list of submissions here. • As the smaller studios beef up their Oscar prospects, this week’s Off the Carpet […]

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‘Brooklyn’s Finest’ to 2010

Posted by · 8:35 am · September 30th, 2009

I just noticed the fine print on an invite today that stated “Brooklyn’s Finest,” recently acquired by Overture Films after Senator Entertainment had to give it up, has been slated for a Spring 2010 release. The film first landed at Sundance and had its champions there.  In particular, I’ve been hearing a lead actor push […]

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9/14 Web Round-up

Posted by · 7:49 am · September 14th, 2009

• Overture angles for the domestic rights to Antoine Fuqua’s “Brooklyn’s Finest,” perhaps giving a leg up to Ethan Hawke in the Best Actor race. [Variety] • Is Charles Darwin too controversial for American multiplexes? [CHUD] • Christopher Plummer at 80, busy as ever. [The Toronto Star]

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Man down in Venice

Posted by · 9:52 am · September 9th, 2009

Whether due to general festival raggedness or some iffy shrimp, I’ve been decidedly under the weather today, and a day spent in a darkened movie theater was not the obvious solution. So I’m writing to you from a quiet cafe on a canalside terrace near the Biennale site, where a combination of sunshine and pistachio […]

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Under the radar: ‘What Doesn’t Kill You’

Posted by · 5:09 pm · November 27th, 2008

Quite why the Yari Group has chosen the mid-December maelstrom to unload “What Doesn’t Kill You” is something that escapes me. Brian Goodman’s debut film was warmly received at Toronto and then seemingly disappeared from people’s memories altogether, only to resurface now with this rather enticing trailer. But with such a late arrival, it seems […]

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