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Top 5 favorite films

25 Jun

Oh how I love films! Doesn’t everybody? (At least everybody who is cool, anyway.) I have so many that I lovelovelove that earlier today I was trying to figure out what my top 5 favorite films would be.  I thought 5 was a good number because 3 is too few and 10 is far too many and 8 is just stupid. I decided on two criteria: 1.) Would I want to watch this film over and over? (Not in a row of course, nobody wants to watch the same film over and over no matter how good it is, unless you are 5 or younger). But like after a reasonable amount of time has passed. 2.) Would I recommend this film to just about anyone? If both of these criteria were met and I ABSOLUTELY LOVED the film, then it made the list.

5. Intermission

Starring: Cillian Murphy, Colin Farrell, Kelly MacDonald

Dir. John Crowley

2003

“A variety of losers in Dublin have harrowingly farcical intersecting stories of love, greed and violence.”

Oh this film is great. Just funny and interesting and different. Cillian Murphy is wonderful! (And it’s pronounced “Kill-ee-ann” every single male I have ever had a conversation with about him!)

4. Primal Fear

Starring: Richard Gere, Edward Norton, Laura Linney

Dir. Gregory Hoblit

1996

“An alter boy is accused of murdering a priest, and the truth is buried several layers deep.”

If you have not seen this movie, you absolutely must! Edward Norton is so amazing he was nominated for an Oscar (and this was his first role). This is one of those movies that will stick with you for a long time.

3. Heathers

Starring: Winona Ryder, Christian Slater, Shannen Doherty

Dir. Michael Lehmann

1988

“A girl who half-heartedly tries to be a part of the in-crowd of her high school meets a rebel who teaches her a more devious way to maneuver high school politics.”

“I love my dead gay son!”

2. Secretary

Starring: Maggie Gyllenhaal, James Spader

Dir. Steven Shainberg

2002

“A young woman recently released from a mental hospital gets a job as a secretary from a demanding and eccentric lawyer.”

This one barely passed my criteria #2, only because I would not recommend this to my parents, or grandparents, or anyone who is uptight about sex. But to everyone else, this movie is so great and a really lovely love story even though it is about S&M.

1. Buffalo ’66

Starring: Vincent Gallo, Christina Ricci, Anjelica Houston

Dir. Vincent Gallo

1998

“After spending 5 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, Billy is released only to kidnap a girl and force her to pose as his girlfriend in order to impress his parents.”

This movie is the best ever. I love it to pieces. The end.

Honorable Mention: Ed Wood

Starring: Johnny Depp, Martin Landau, Sarah Jessica Parker

Dir. Tim Burton

1994

“The mostly true story of the legendary director of awful movies and his strange group of friends and actors.”

So I lied. Top six.

Anybody want to share your top 5 favorite films? Or top 6? Or top 3? Or top whatever? I’d love some suggestions!

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What did Sam Worthington ever do to you, magazine industry?

2 Apr

Clash of the Titans opens today, so naturally Sam Worthington’s manly face is going to be everywhere for awhile. Here’s two examples:

Notice anything slightly hilarious? Details was nice enough to use Mr. Worthington’s name in reference to a mentally challenged fictional character from a film with a 34% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and Entertainment Weekly billed him as “The guy from Avatar.” I’m sure Sam Worthington was like, “Oh, yeah, I figure that’s what everbody calls me anyway, may as well just change my name to it. EW was nice enough to help me out in getting those few people who know my real name to forget it completely. Thanks EW, you’re a real mate.”

Look, The Guy From Avatar in glasses!

Hello, just a quick thing

14 Mar

I made a tumblr for all the films I see, not just in theatres, but older ones too. Just maybe a photo or two, and a quick synopsis, and a quick word, and how I rate it. You can see it here if you want.

Oscar Oscar Oscar!

7 Mar

THE HURT LOCKER:

Best Picture.

Best Director.

Original Screenplay.

Sound mixing, sound editing and film editing.

You deserve it.

Thank you Oscars, for reaffirming how irrelevent the Golden Globes are by awarding the films that truely deserve it.

I thought the ceremony was pretty well done and as entertaining as it could be. It was extremely long, but it always is, so there isn’t really any point complaining about that. I liked that they decided not to perform the nominees for Original Song; that was always the most boring part of the show, and I think getting to hear the Original Score nominees instead (set to break dancing!) was much more interesting.

How hilarious was it when Colin Farrell, Julianne Moore, Tim Robbins etc. came out to talk about how great the Best Actor nominees are at acting (and life), and when it was Colin’s turn to talk about Jeremy Renner, his reference film was S.W.A.T. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. S.W.A.T.! “We all knew Jeremy was destined for an Oscar nomination when we saw the masterful way he portrayed a run-of-the-mill cop in a run-of-the-mill action movie. Good job,” said Colin Farrell. Christ. You could tell both Colin and Jeremy were very confused. They were both like “I erased that film from my memory five years ago.” They could have at least had a co-star from North Country or Dahmer. Those films weren’t magnificent by any means, but Jeremy was good in them, and at least they weren’t S.W.A.T. (And in the case of North Country, they could have had Charlize Theron do the honors. Her little anecdote could have been about how Jeremy christened her with the nick-name Ass-Nuts!)

Dear Sean Penn: Just shut up and tell us who won Best Actress (Sandra Bullock). Thank You.

Oh, and Rachel McAdams, your dress was beautiful.

All in all, a pretty successful night, I think. Just 364 days until the 83rd Annual Academy Awards.

p.s.: I guessed 19 out of 24 winners correctly in my Oscar predictions! Whoohoo! (Apparently there were no surprises!)

Oscar 2010 predictions

5 Mar

I’m a pretty opinionated person. This is why I have a blog, duh. I am especially opinionated when it comes to films. I worked at a video store for over 2 years and have so much movie trivia floating around in my brain it’s a wonder I’m able to fit anything else in there. Working at a video store is also probably why I am so cyincal toward the average American. You know, the average American who tries to return Pan’s Labrynith because it has subtitles. “If I wanted to read, I’d open a book.” That is what the average American says. I can’t tell you how many people tried to return movies with subtitles, who then rented Transformers and liked it.

Anyway, what I’m saying is, every year I like to guess what Oscar films are going to win (I think that is what I am trying to say). Because when I am right, I am happy. I haven’t seen all the films nominated (who has?), so some of my guesses are based on absolutely nothing, other than ‘that one sounds good.’ 

Who I think will win is in bold, who I wish would win is in italics, and if who I wish would win is the same as who I think will win, it is in bolded italics.

Best Picture
Avatar
The Blind Side
District 9
An Education
The Hurt Locker
Inglourious Basterds
Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire
A Serious Man
Up
Up in the Air

Best Director
Kathryn Bigelow – The Hurt Locker
James Cameron – Avatar
Lee Daniels – Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire
Jason Reitman – Up in the Air
Quentin Tarantino – Inglourious Basterds

Best Actor
Jeff Bridges – Crazy Heart
George Clooney – Up in the Air
Colin Firth – A Single Man
Morgan Freeman – Invictus
Jeremy Renner – The Hurt Locker

Best Actress
Sandra Bullock – The Blind Side
Helen Mirren – The Last Station
Carey Mulligan – An Education
Gabourey Sidibe – Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire
Meryl Streep – Julie & Julia

Best Supporting Actor
Matt Damon – Invictus
Woody Harrelson – The Messenger
Christopher Plummer – The Last Station
Stanley Tucci – The Lovely Bones
Christoph Waltz – Inglourious Basterds

Best Supporting Actress
Penélope Cruz – Nine
Vera Farmiga – Up in the Air
Maggie Gyllenhaal – Crazy Heart
Anna Kendrick – Up in the Air
Mo’Nique – Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire

Best Original Screenplay
The Hurt Locker – Mark Boal
Inglourious Basterds – Quentin Tarantino
The Messenger – Alessandro Camon and Oren Moverman
A Serious Man – Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
Up – Tom McCarthy, Bob Peterson and Pete Docter

Best Adapted Screenplay
An Education – Nick Hornby from An Education by Lynn Barber
District 9 – Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell from Alive in Joburg by Blomkamp
In the Loop – Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci and Tony Roche from The Thick of It created by Iannucci
Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire – Geoffrey Fletcher from Push by Sapphire
Up in the Air – Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner from Up in the Air by Walter Kirn

Best Animated Feature
Coraline – Henry Selick
Fantastic Mr. Fox – Wes Anderson
The Princess and the Frog – Ron Clements and John Musker
The Secret of Kells – Tomm Moore
Up – Pete Docter

Best Foreign Language Film
Ajami (Israel) in Arabic and Hebrew – Scandar Copti and Yaron Shani
El Secreto de Sus Ojos (Argentina) in Spanish – Juan José Campanella
The Milk of Sorrow (Peru) in Spanish and Quechua – Claudia Llosa
Un Prophète (France) in French, Corsican and Arabic – Jacques Audiard
The White Ribbon (Germany) in German – Michael Haneke

Best Documentary Feature
Burma VJ – Anders Østergaard and Lise Lense-Møller
The Cove – Louie Psihoyos and Fisher Stevens
Food, Inc. – Robert Kenner and Elise Pearlstein
The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers – Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith
Which Way Home – Rebecca Cammisa

Best Documentary Short
China’s Unnatural Disaster: The Tears of Sichuan Province – Jon Alpert and Matthew O’Neill
The Last Campaign of Governor Booth Gardner – Daniel Junge and Henry Ansbacher
The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant – Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert
Music by Prudence – Roger Ross Williams and Elinor Burkett
Rabbit à la Berlin – Bartosz Konopka and Anna Wydra

Best Live Action Short
The Door – Juanita Wilson and James Flynn
Instead of Abracadabra – Patrik Eklund and Mathias Fjellström
Kavi – Gregg Helvey
Miracle Fish – Luke Doolan and Drew Bailey
The New Tenants – Joachim Back and Tivi Magnusson

Best Animated Short
French Roast – Fabrice O. Joubert
Granny O’Grimm’s Sleeping Beauty – Nicky Phelan and Darragh O’Connell
The Lady and the Reaper – Javier Recio Gracia
Logorama – Nicolas Schmerkin
A Matter of Loaf and Death – Nick Park

Best Original Score
Avatar – James Horner
Fantastic Mr. Fox – Alexandre Desplat
The Hurt Locker – Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders
Sherlock Holmes – Hans Zimmer
Up – Michael Giacchino

Best Original Song
“Almost There” from The Princess and the Frog – Randy Newman
“Down in New Orleans” from The Princess and the Frog – Randy Newman
“Loin de Paname” from Paris 36 – Reinhardt Wagner and Frank Thomas
“Take it All” from Nine – Maury Yeston
“The Weary Kind (Theme from Crazy Heart)” from Crazy Heart – Ryan Bingham and T-Bone Burnett

Best Sound Editing
Avatar – Christopher Boyes and Gwendolyn Yates Whittle
The Hurt Locker – Paul N.J. Ottosson
Inglourious Basterds – Wylie Stateman
Star Trek – Mark Stoeckinger and Alan Rankin
Up – Michael Silvers and Tom Myers

Best Sound Mixing
Avatar – Christopher Boyes, Gary Summers, Andy Nelson and Tony Johnson
The Hurt Locker – Paul N.J. Ottosson and Ray Beckett
Inglourious Basterds – Michael Minkler, Tony Lamberti and Mark Ulano
Star Trek – Anna Behlmer, Andy Nelson and Peter J. Devlin
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen – Greg P. Russell, Gary Summers and Geoffrey Patterson

Best Art Direction
Avatar – Art Direction: Rick Carter and Robert Stromberg; Set Decoration: Kim Sinclair
The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus – Art Direction: Dave Warren and Anastasia Masaro; Set Decoration: Caroline Smith
Nine – Art Direction: John Myhre; Set Decoration: Gordon Sim
Sherlock Holmes – Art Direction: Sarah Greenwood; Set Decoration: Katie Spencer
The Young Victoria – Art Direction: Patrice Vermette; Set Decoration: Maggie Gray

Best Cinematography
Avatar – Mauro Fiore
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – Bruno Delbonnel
The Hurt Locker – Barry Ackroyd
Inglourious Basterds – Robert Richardson
The White Ribbon – Christian Berger

Best Makeup
Il Divo – Aldo Signoretti and Vittorio Sodano
Star Trek – Barney Burman, Mindy Hall and Joel Harlow
The Young Victoria – Jon Henry Gordon and Jenny Shircore

Best Costume Design
Bright Star – Janet Patterson
Coco Before Chanel – Catherine Leterrier
The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus – Monique Prudhomme
Nine – Colleen Atwood
The Young Victoria – Sandy Powell

Best Film Editing
Avatar – James Cameron, John Refoua and Stephen E. Rivkin
District 9 – Julian Clarke
The Hurt Locker – Chris Innis and Bob Murawski
Inglourious Basterds – Sally Menke
Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire – Joe Klotz

Best Visual Effects
Avatar – Joe Letteri, Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham and Andrew R. Jones
District 9 – Dan Kaufman, Peter Muyzers, Robert Habros, and Matt Aitken
Star Trek – Roger Guyett, Russell Earl, Paul Kavanagh and Burt Dalton

The BAFTAs got it right

22 Feb

Last night I watched the BAFTAs on BBC America. For those of you who don’t know what a BAFTA is, it’s basically the Brititsh equivalent of the Oscars. I believe BAFTA stands for British Academy of (mainly American) Film and (a few British) Actors. Or I could be making that up. Either way, even though it is a British award, there were a lot of American winners, because let’s face it, we make the best movies.

I only saw the last hour, or as I like to call it, the part where the most important awards are given out. The Hurt Locker took home best original screenplay (Mark Boal), director (Kathryn Bigelow) and picture. BECAUSE IT DESERVED IT. Avatar won technical awards, as it should, but nothing else (Oscars, take note).

Oh, and this made me happy:

Here’s the complete BAFTA awards 2010 winners list:

Best Film: The Hurt Locker
Leading Actor: Colin Firth, A Single Man
Leading Actress: Carey Mulligan, An Education
Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds
Supporting Actress: Mo’Nique, Precious
Director: Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
Original Screenplay: Mark Boal, The Hurt Locker
Adapted Screenplay: Jason Reitman & Sheldon Turner, Up In the Air
Film Not in the English Language: A Prophet (France)
Animated Film: Up
Outstanding British Film: Fish Tank
Outstanding Debut By a British Writer, Director or Producer: Duncan Jones, Moon (director)
Music: Michael Giacchino, Up
Cinematography: The Hurt Locker
Editing: The Hurt Locker
Production Design: Avatar
Costume Design: The Young Victoria
Sound: The Hurt Locker
Special Visual Effects: Avatar
Makeup & Hair: The Young Victoria
Short Animation: Mother of Many
The Orange Rising Star Award: Kristen Stewart
Academy Fellowship: Vanessa Redgrave

James Cameron is writing Avatar: The Novel

18 Feb

According to The Guardian:

Avatar fans desperate for a deeper insight into the world of the Na’vi are set for a treat after director James Cameron revealed he is planning to write a novel based on the box office hit.

Obviously this is a good idea because the best thing about Avatar is the plot and the dialouge, no doy. Like, I’m 100% sure if it wasn’t in 3D and set in such a visually lush world it would totally still be getting nominated for an Oscar. Remember that scene where Jake Sully was like “I have only been in Pandora for a month but I’m really getting the hang of the Na’vi ways and in fact I am the best at being a Na’vi”? I remember that. I was like, I haven’t seen a story like this since Dances With Wolves when it was EXACTLY THE SAME, but that movie totally came out 20 years ago so it doesn’t count. Oh, and also when it was called Pocahontas.

I’m sure a lot of people are really looking forward to this though, like mainly all the people who have never seen Dances With Wolves or Pocahontas.

These guys are like, "I would dye my skin blue for reals to read a book written by James Cameron!!!!"

I think ‘I guy 1 jar’s comment on the Entertainment Weekly comment board basically sums up the argument for people who think when it comes to Avatar James Cameron can do no wrong:

James Cameron is the answer to Quetin Toronto

You know, I never thought of it that way, ‘I guy 1 jar’. When a person presents an argument that strong sometimes it’s just hard not to reconsider your stance on the matter and just admit that Avatar: The Novel is a good idea and that yes, James Cameron is the answer to Quetin Toronto.