REVIEW: “Frost/Nixon” (**)

Posted by · 9:17 am · October 15th, 2008

London Film Festival For director Ron Howard and screenwriter Peter Morgan, “Frost/Nixon” was always going to be a tricky beast to handle. A film adaptation of Morgan’s own stage play that was itself very much about the powers of television, the relationship between text, medium and audience has shifted in ways I’m not sure the […]

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10/9 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 5:41 am · October 9th, 2008

• Dave Karger not only thinks Ralph Fiennes is in the supporting actor race for “The Duchess,” he thinks he is Heath Ledger’s main competition. [Oscar Watch] • Eight documentary shorts have been short-listed by AMPAS. [Oscars.org] • Jeffrey Wells reports that Lionsgate Films is pissing off Portland area critics by not screening “W.” for […]

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Bloggers dish ‘Changeling,’ O’Neil surprised by Sheen’s lead push

Posted by · 12:08 pm · October 6th, 2008

Gold Derby’s Tom O’Neil corralled a bunch of Oscar bloggers over the weekend to discuss his topic of choice: Angelina Jolie’s Oscar chances for “Changeling” after an AMPAS funk for the last few years. I decided to abstain, since I won’t be seeing the film until next week and would prefer not to spin my […]

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Best Actor race looking tight as always — expect surprises

Posted by · 11:37 am · September 17th, 2008

The Best Actor category tends to be one of the more crowded categories come Oscar time, and 2008 looks to be no exception. To be sure, there are a handful of frontrunners as usual, but hovering behind them are another group, more than eight who could easily sneak in and nab a nomination. Last year […]

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Can Ron Howard give ‘Frost/Nixon’ the edge it needs?

Posted by · 11:32 am · September 2nd, 2008

In 2000 I remember reading a post on Ain’t It Cool News by Harry Knowles.  Having seen an unfinished cut of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” the Ron Howard film based on the beloved Dr. Suess story and animated program, Knowles believed that the film would redefine Howard as a filmmkaer, elevate him to a […]

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Beyond the biopic

Posted by · 6:10 pm · August 24th, 2008

Halfway through watching the recently uncovered trailer for Ron Howard’s “Frost/Nixon,” I felt my stomach sinking with involuntary dread, and it took me a beat or two to figure out why. The problem didn’t appear to be the film itself; in fact, the relatively zippy trailer promises something somewhat tighter and wittier than I’ve been […]

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Movie stingers: do they work?

Posted by · 4:39 am · July 8th, 2008

If you saw “Hancock” over the weekend, you probably noticed a brief scene in the middle of the closing credits sequence featuring Mike Epps and meant as a funny punch for your theater exiting pleasure. It got me thinking about inter- and post-credit sequences — called “stingers” — and whether they ought to be eliminated altogether.  I ask this despite […]

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Hammond on ‘Frost/Nixon’

Posted by · 3:06 am · June 15th, 2008

Apologies for digging up a nearly three-week old article – somehow this escaped my notice until now. Buried in Pete Hammond’s typically thorough Cannes review is this very positive aside about Ron Howard’s much-anticipated “Frost/Nixon:” Howard could, and probably will, find himself in competition with Eastwood in the directing category. His funny, complicated and fascinating film […]

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Best actor contenders join an eclectic list of recent winners

Posted by · 7:16 am · May 6th, 2008

Sean Penn, Benicio Del Toro and Frank Langella seem to be the names bandied about for Oscar consideration this year, which would place them in some impressive company of nominees and winners these last 20 years. Of course, that said, there have also been some bizarre choices for the Best Actor award, which has often […]

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Woah…I think we have a real makeup contender

Posted by · 12:24 pm · April 3rd, 2008

Putting together a list of makeup contenders was a little difficult for the year-in-advance column this year. I ultimately settled on “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” (a film that will be integrating plenty of effects, makeup key among them), “The Other Boleyn Girl” (eh…I know) and “The Dark Knight” (maybe voters will be impressed […]

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REVIEW: “Superman Returns” (***)

Posted by · 5:09 pm · June 27th, 2006

When he was appointed to bring one of the most socially complex comic book series to the screen in the form of 2000’s “X-Men,” director Bryan Singer had in front of him the opportunity to usher realism and tangibility into the genre. While that first installment in a franchise that has this year gone terribly […]

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