Seeking refuge in festival season

Posted by · 4:31 pm · August 17th, 2009

There’s been much prophesying of doom among film journalists lately, with everyone from Roger Ebert to Jeff Wells harping on about an imminent cinematic dark age, brought on by mainstream audiences who prefer “G.I. Joe” to “The Hurt Locker.” If I don’t quite share their alarm, it’s because it’s a cry that is repeated at […]

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9/22 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 10:07 am · September 22nd, 2008

• “Real” men of the screen are a dying breed, according to Peter Bart. [Peter Bart] • Journos keep beating a dead horse about the new “At the Movies” failure. [eFilmCritic] • And again. [The Hot Blog] • Anne Thompson salutes Telluride and New York for steering clear of high profile American cinema, but as […]

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OFF THE CARPET: Looking for quality in the festival world

Posted by · 8:42 am · September 15th, 2008

This year’s Toronto International Film Festival just didn’t cut it for some people.  The talk of Oscar taking a break from the annual September showcase had become tired before films even began screening, and certainly before every major news outlet had chosen the angle as the only story worth telling. For 10 days, the excitement […]

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9/14 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 6:29 am · September 14th, 2008

• Anne Thompson wraps up this year’s Toronto/Telluride corridor. [Thompson on Hollywood] • Jeffrey Wells, meanwhile, recaps the Toronto fest. [Hollywood Elsewhere] • David Poland thinks Toronto’s “car wreck for expectations” might be a good thing. [The Hot Blog] • Peter Scieretta reports on a release date for “The Wrestler”: December 19. [/Film] • James […]

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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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Is ‘Slumdog’ really a slam dunk?

Posted by · 6:33 pm · September 6th, 2008

It’s no secret that Danny Boyle’s “Slumdog Millionaire” is shaping up to be one of the indie darlings of 2008. The film was the uncontested hit of the Telluride festival, bowing to sensational reviews, of which Todd McCarthy’s (key phrases: “a blast;” “fantastic energy;” “a vital piece of work”) represents the consensus. Almost immediately, Oscar […]

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BEST ACTOR WATCH: Jeff Goldblum in ‘Adam Resurrected’

Posted by · 11:03 am · September 5th, 2008

Looking at the latest contenders to muscle in on an already crowded Best Actor field, you could be forgiven for thinking it’s 1986 or something. First, the formerly washed-up Mickey Rourke rebounds with an apparently career-best performance in “The Wrestler” that is generating loud Oscar buzz. Now Rourke’s relative contemporary, Jeff Goldblum, is setting tongues […]

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Patrick Goldstein goes after Variety’s Todd McCarthy

Posted by · 1:54 pm · September 4th, 2008

Here’s another one of those “bloggers and critics are the story” pieces that some people hate so much, but when there’s a dust-up, I like to grab the popcorn and rubberneck like anyone else. This time around it’s Patrick Goldstein of the Los Angeles Times, you know, the guy that hates bloggers but finds himself […]

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9/4 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 6:23 am · September 4th, 2008

• Tom O’Neil responds to the “Milk” trailer. [Gold Derby] • So does Seth Abramowitz. [Defamer] • “Appaloosa” director Ed Harris will receive the 3rd annual Kirk Douglas Award at this year’s Santa Barbara Film Festival. [Variety] • Peter Sciretta wonders whether “Slumdog Millionaire” stole “Happy-Go-Lucky”‘s thunder at Telluride this year. [/Film] • James Rocchi […]

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9/3 Oscarweb Round-up

Posted by · 6:11 am · September 3rd, 2008

• Mark Olsen counts down Toronto’s must sees. It’s an indie dominated list (and fest, really) with more than a few surprises. [The Envelope] • Pete Hammond talks to Tom O’Neil about the Telluride success of “Slumdog Millionaire” and “I’ve Loved You So Long,” as well as the whole “Button” footage dust-up from yesterday. [Gold […]

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Pete Hammond can’t resist sticking it to the blog-o-sphere

Posted by · 1:00 pm · September 2nd, 2008

You know, I kind of, sort of let it pass when Anne Thompson decided to take a mini-stab at bloggers (written as a pejorative, no doubt) who didn’t really like the 20 minutes of footage from “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” shown at Telluride last week. But I can’t help but be irritated at […]

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Another vote of confidence for ‘Button’

Posted by · 4:34 pm · September 1st, 2008

Kris linked earlier to Anne Thompson’s defence of the 20-minute taster of “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” — a riposte to the underwhelmed response from certain corners of the blogosphere. Encouragingly, Thompson’s Variety colleague Todd McCarthy is of the same mind. Saying the footage “pushes all the right buttons,” he elaborates: The footage looked artistically and technically […]

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Cinematical swoons over Scott Thomas

Posted by · 5:18 am · September 1st, 2008

Compared to the drought of previous years, where the five nominees have been all but pre-determined for months in advance, the Best Actress race is looking rather crowded at this point. (It’s certainly the major category that gave me the most pause when I updated my predictions this morning.) What’s gratifying to see is that […]

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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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‘Button’ footage raises concerns at Telluride

Posted by · 1:53 am · August 30th, 2008

Well I was willing to let the first murmurs go by without commentary, but the more I poke around, the more I’m hearing that the footage from David Fincher’s “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” shown last night at the director’s tribute is underwhelming to say the least. This is disconcerting.  As much as I […]

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