2/24 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Hanks to present two off the bat, Elton John on Best Actress, Twitter Best Pic reviews

Posted by · 9:07 am · February 24th, 2011

• Pete Hammond reports that Tom Hanks will present Best Art Direction and Best Cinematography to start the show, so we’ll know very quickly if a sweep for “The King’s Speech” is afoot. [Deadline] • Glenn Kenny talks up the underrated “Shutter Island” a year after its release. [The Film Talk] • It’s been a […]

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The top 10 shots of 2010: part one

Posted by · 11:06 am · February 22nd, 2011

I have to admit, I procrastinated this column quite a bit this year. It has become a favorite staple for me, and, I’m happy to see, for our readers. But something was holding me back from pulling the trigger on getting the list together this time around. It’s a lot of work, of course. So […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Analyzing the nominees

Posted by · 11:53 am · January 28th, 2011

So the 83rd Annual Academy Award nominations were finally announced this week, and I did fairly well in handicapping the nominees. Outside of Best Sound Mixing, I never missed more than one nominee in a category. Unfortunately, there were no categories where I scored 100% (apart from Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay). Oh well. […]

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‘King’s Speech’ leads the pack with 12 Oscar nominations

Posted by · 6:22 am · January 25th, 2011

On the face of it, the nominees for the 83rd annual Academy Awards seemed fairly unremarkable. Aside from the deafening nature of not hearing Christopher Nolan’s name in the line-up for Best Director (the only true shock of the major categories), everything seemed to be within the expected parameters (even Javier Bardem sliding in, which […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Final analysis, part two

Posted by · 9:48 am · January 21st, 2011

Yesterday I began a final look at the crafts categories. Today, a look at the four remaining fields: Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design and Best Film Editing. BEST ART DIRECTION The precursors of the BFCA, BAFTA and Art Directors Guild have been fairly consistent in citing four titles in this category. Last […]

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TECH SUPPORT: Final analysis, part one

Posted by · 8:57 am · January 20th, 2011

It seems hard to believe that it’s been more than six months since I wrote this year’s introductory Tech Support column ( a dissection of the art direction race). Much has changed since then, naturally, as we are less than a week away from the big day when we find out the nominees for the […]

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FIRST-HALF FYC: Below-the-line standouts

Posted by · 11:45 am · January 11th, 2011

For the penultimate installment in our reflection on the most Oscar-worthy achievements from the largely forgotten first half of 2010’s release calendar, I’m backtracking away from the major categories to the place I should perhaps have started: the technical sphere. Had I thought to start this column 20-odd weeks in advance of nomination day, I […]

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Predict the ASC nominees

Posted by · 9:32 am · January 10th, 2011

Now that the DGA has spoken, something to pass the time.  Tomorrow the crafts guilds continue to roll out the season as the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) offers its picks for the best work behind the camera in 2010.  This is perhaps my favorite of the below-the-line categories, so I thought I’d offer up […]

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‘Shutter Island,’ ‘Social Network’ surprise with Cinema Audio Society, ‘TRON’ snubbed

Posted by · 5:30 am · January 6th, 2011

The immediately striking thing about this year’s slate of nominees from the Cinema Audio Society (which honors sound mixing) is the appearance of “Shutter Island.” This is the film’s second below-the-line guild citation in as many days (following an Art Directors Guild nomination yesterday). If it had managed a PGA nomination earlier this week, I’d […]

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Predict the PGA nominees

Posted by · 10:06 am · January 3rd, 2011

Tomorrow the guild circuit launches with the WGA (separate post coming) and PGA nominations.  The critics’ circuit was well and good but this is where crossover memberships begin to give us a tangible view of how the race will fill out. Last year the PGA (Producers Guild of America) piggy-backed the Academy’s plan to expand […]

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INTERVIEW: ‘Shutter Island’ director Martin Scorsese

Posted by · 11:54 am · December 29th, 2010

Martin Scorsese’s “Shutter Island” did just fine with audiences this year, bringing in nearly $300 million worldwide and ultimately proving to be the biggest box office hit of his career to date.  However, the film didn’t quite ring the bell of a number of critics who struggled to comprehend its specifically rendered formalism and opted […]

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12/24 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Coen mustache history, year’s most overlooked, Cronenweth on ‘Social’

Posted by · 6:12 am · December 24th, 2010

• The 15 greatest mustaches in Coen brothers history. [Vulture] • The Gurus o’ Gold get their last licks in before the new year. [Movie City News] • Betsy Sharkey writes up the 10 most overlooked films of 2010, and yes, it’s a valid point to put the nearly $300 million worldwide grosser “Shutter Island” […]

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Forbes names DiCaprio 2010’s highest-grossing star

Posted by · 7:07 am · December 21st, 2010

In last week’s year-in-review superlatives column, I closed things up as I always do by offering up my choice for “entertainer of the year.”  It generally goes to an individual or organization I think made the most significant popular and/or creative impact on cinema in a given year, kind of a tip of the hat […]

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OFF THE CARPET: Macro/micro

Posted by · 11:25 am · December 20th, 2010

I decided to update the Contenders section this week by addressing things (mostly) as they seem to stand in the wake of the critics’ awards circuit of the last two weeks.  Save for this or that personal hunch (like buying into Guy’s shrewd proposition that the BAFTA contingent could help Lesley Manville over the hump, […]

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Best in show 2010: the year in superlatives

Posted by · 10:07 am · December 17th, 2010

The week, and with it, the bulk of my 2010 coverage, draws to a close today with a look at the best of the best. I’m offering up a personal list of superlatives, including most Oscar categories and some other fun fields thrown in for good measure. A tradition at this point. There will be […]

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If I had a ballot

Posted by · 8:56 am · December 15th, 2010

The year is winding down.  Today, as part of the week’s on-going year-in-review specials, I’m offering up my annual “if I had a ballot” post. In years past I’ve tended to defer to studio campaigns for category placement, but this year I figured, “Screw it.”  After all, if I actually had a ballot I could […]

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Likability: the best films of 2010

Posted by · 11:51 am · December 13th, 2010

I don’t quite know how to peg 2010. On one hand it has felt like a weak year. On the other hand, I’ve enjoyed quite a few films. Maybe the story lies in that sentence: “enjoyed.” There were precious few films that really rocked me, but plenty that were a nice enough experience. If you […]

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Visual effects race whittled down to 15

Posted by · 3:43 pm · December 10th, 2010

This is the first year the race for Best Visual Effects will feature five nominees.  So take a third of these lucky semi-finalists and there we are.  The five I think most are expecting to show up are still in the mix. The most surprising omission for me is “Black Swan,” which used digital wizardry […]

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