My picks for the 10 WORST films of the year

Posted by · 1:55 pm · December 30th, 2008

As always, this list was no trouble to write.  There is always an abundance of bad films in a given year.  I tend to go for the films that should have been stronger, that had a good director or fine actors, but still came out smelling like sewage.  There’s no excuse for that. 1. “88 […]

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LONDON: ‘Three Blind Mice,’ ‘Nights and Weekends,’ ‘Lazy Days,’ ‘Kala’

Posted by · 6:00 pm · October 16th, 2008

So today was the first full day of London Film Festival action, after last night’s premiere of “Frost/Nixon” kicked off proceedings. With a raft of fair-to-respectable reviews (as you know, I was firmly in the “meh” camp), Howard’s film didn’t land with quite the bang I’m sure the festival organisers were hoping for, but it […]

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9/29 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 5:39 am · September 29th, 2008

• A happy ending of sorts for Matilda Rose in the wake of Heath Ledger’s death. [Agence France-Presse] • Kenneth Branagh is in talks to direct “Thor.”  Weird, but badass. [Variety] • Tom O’Neil traces Paul Newman’s frustrating quest for Oscars. [Gold Derby] • James Rocchi talks to “Miracle at St. Anna” director Spike Lee. […]

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9/25 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 5:42 am · September 25th, 2008

• Jeffrey Wells talks with legendary Oscar-winning lenser Gordon Willis about “The Godfather Restoration.” [Hollywood Elsewhere] • Talia Shire discusses same with Alex Simon and Terry Keefe. [The Hollywood Interview] • Nikki Finke shits herself with weird fury over the Condon/Mark Oscar news from yesterday, finally admits she has testicles. [Deadline Hollywood Daily] • Patrick […]

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9/24 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 5:57 am · September 24th, 2008

• David Poland adds a nice perspective to yesterday’s nothing “news” about Weinstein vs. Rudin. [The Hot Blog] • Patrick Goldstein sticks his toe in the scuffle as well. [The Big Picture] • Ditto Brad Brevet. [Rope of Silicon] • 10 things you need to know about “The Wrestler.” [Vulture] • Jeffrey Wells thinks “Miracle […]

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‘Miracle at St. Anna’ added to London fest lineup

Posted by · 2:45 am · September 24th, 2008

Just, you know, FYI. Curiously, the addition of Spike Lee’s film means they’re bumping “Rachel Getting Married” into a slightly less high-profile slot. Weird, since we all know which film has more heat in the wake of the festivals. Though I’m not very excited about “Miracle,” any expansion of the programme is encouraging to see. […]

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MySpace is now a Spike Lee joint

Posted by · 8:19 am · September 21st, 2008

Filmmaker Spike Lee is hoofing it online to get his new film “Miracle at St. Anna” out to the masses, “by any means necessary.”  He’s launched a brand new MySpace page that has the trailer for the film and a few clips as well.  Ah well, despite the movie, I gotta add him as a […]

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9/10 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 6:12 am · September 10th, 2008

• Journos continue to catch up with the two-week-old narrative: Toronto isn’t an Oscar playground this year.  [Entertainment Weekly] • Anthony Breznican, thankfully, tries to come at it from a slightly different perspective. [USA Today] • James Rocchi sits down with Darren Aronofsky for some choice words in Toronto. [Cinematical] • Jeffrey Wells is in […]

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“An Oscar-less Toronto” — but not for Searchlight

Posted by · 3:58 am · September 10th, 2008

Anybody who’s kept even half an eye on film news recently knows by now that, compared to previous years, the consecutive Venice and Toronto festivals have done little to illuminate the Oscar race. (Unless, I suppose, you were one of those predicting major glory for “Miracle at St. Anna.”) The Hollywood Reporter adds their verdict […]

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Top 10 F-bombs of all time

Posted by · 10:14 am · September 8th, 2008

Andre Rivas has posted a great new top 10 list over at Rope of Silicon: The top 10 F-Bomb movie moments.  It’s impossible to argue with the #1 position, of course, but with all the Spike Lee talk lately due to “Miracle at St. Anna,” I took a minute to play the “25th Hour” sequence. […]

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OFF THE CARPET: Indies on the march

Posted by · 7:39 am · September 8th, 2008

Maybe mid-way through the Toronto Film Festival, two things are strikingly clear: Darren Aronofsky has the goods with “The Wrestler” and Danny Boyle’s streak of successful versatility at the helm continues with “Slumdog Millionaire.” Both films, which enjoy pre-Toronto success at Venice and Telluride respectfully, are also evidence that surprises will happen this time of […]

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TORONTO: ‘Burn After Reading,’ ‘Appaloosa,’ ‘Miracle at St. Anna’

Posted by · 11:55 am · September 6th, 2008

Rough day on the legs yesterday, a lot of walking.  Five films. One of them I will watch on DVD in the luxury of my room tonight, so four that I am running to, but hey, these are films I want to see, which always helps, right? I scanned the local papers for reaction to […]

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REVIEW: “Miracle at St. Anna” (**)

Posted by · 8:06 am · September 6th, 2008

Spike Lee knows how to mount a natural tension behind the camera. He knows how to create powerful scenes. He knows how to weave theme and yes, even subtext into his narratives. But more often than not he fails to put these gifts together in a successful piece that gets out of its own way […]

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OFF THE CARPET: Make way for the little guys…or not

Posted by · 1:51 am · September 1st, 2008

It may be Labor Day, but the work at hand is breathing down our necks. So it is that we come to the first weekly Oscar column of the new awards season. Though to be frank with you, I’m beginning to wonder whether we’ll be able to keep the conversation going, much less interesting on […]

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POLL: Which recently off-his-game director do you expect to hit paydirt this Oscar season?

Posted by · 2:14 pm · August 4th, 2008

It’s been a couple of weeks since we introduced a new sidebar poll — tons going on, apologies. But suffice it to say, “The Dark Knight” beat out eight other highly regarded comic book films to be the readers’ choice for best all-time in the genre. No shock there, though it took more votes than […]

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Wells joins the guessing game

Posted by · 1:55 am · July 14th, 2008

In response to Tom O’Neil’s contender shortlist that I discussed yesterday, Jeff Wells at Hollywood Elsewhere has come up with his own list of Best Picture frontrunners – and predicted also-rans. (O’Neil has since significantly amended his list, by the way – wisely removing “Blindness” and “Synecdoche, New York” from Best Picture consideration, and adding […]

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‘Miracle’ headed to Toronto

Posted by · 4:59 am · July 3rd, 2008

This flew under my radar yesterday, but the Toronto International Film Festival has added a few more films to its Septmber line-up, including Spike Lee’s “Miracle at St. Anna.”  The press release has more.

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‘Miracle’ trailer — a week late, I know…

Posted by · 5:41 am · June 22nd, 2008

I finally watched this trailer for Spike Lee’s upcoming “Miracle at St. Anna” over the weekend. It’s been out and about for at least a week now, but I decided to wait a bit as I am in the middle of James McBride’s novel at the moment. Sometimes one prefers the imagination. I knew once […]

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