1. The Brits are (really) taking over. We are in the middle of another British invasion; did you know? If you’re like me, you noted just how much the Brits are dominating American television, movies, and music, sometimes without us even being really aware (the buggers can do great American accents). From 2013 Golden Globe winners Damien Lewis of Homeland (a show that has a number of British actors playing American) to Daniel Day-Lewis (who is known to take on American historical figures a time or two), they are proving to be a force in Hollywood (and I’m loving it). Let’s not forget GG winner Adele (for the Bond song “Skyfall”) and nominees Ewan McGregor, Emily Blunt, Judi Dench, Clive Owen, Maggie Smith, and others.
2. The duo of Wiig and Ferrell would make awesome 2014 award show hosts. Oh, yeah, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler did a great job hosting the Golden Globes but they weren’t the best duo on stage. That prize went to Kristen Wiig and Will Ferrell who showed up to present the award to the Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy (asking as though they had never been anywhere fancy before). They were determined to prove they had seen all of the nominated performances (they had not) by recapping what the movies were about. You can only imagine what can next. Hopefully the organizers noted this award show standout moment: Wiig and Ferrell ‘14.
In case you haven’t heard (or don’t really care to which you won’t be reading this post anyway), this morning around 8:30 am EST, the nominations for the 85th Academy Awards were announced. I had some big hopes (Leo DiCaprio, who made Django Unchainedso great! Argo, my pick for best film of the year! Anne Hathaway, who sang her heart out in Les Mis! Please, don’t nominate Jennifer Lawrence!). The nominations were announced by the duo of Seth MacFarlene (host for the upcoming award show) and Emma Stone (the resident “It girl” of the moment). Seth MacFarlene, who I never really found all that funny in the past, continues to surprise me (do you know he is a Grammy-winning singer/songwriter and now can add Oscar nominee if you see below) and is definitely growing on me. I found his banter with the always adorably funny Emma Stone to be cute. By the way, if you didn’t get to see the nominees announced live but sill want to see it, you can still watch it here.
I’m looking even more forward to Oscar night. And I started a new tradition last year to see whatever wins Best Film and Best Foreign Film as a double feature after the awards show if I hadn’t already (Last year, it was The Artist & A Separation) so excited to see what will win. Let’s get to my recap of the top nominees, my commentary and predictions as well as some good ol’ fashion Oscar trivia…
Best Motion Picture of the year: Amour | Argo | Beasts of the Southern Wild | Django Unchained | Les Miserables | Lincoln | Life of Pi | Silver Linings Playbook | Zero Dark Thirty
According to the aggregate of critics, the frontrunners are Argo, Amour and Zero Dark Thirty (which just made it in since it entered theaters as a limited release in December). However, more likely than not, Best Film winners also have a best director nom. None for Ben Affleck (Argo) or Kathyrn Bigelow (Zero Dark Thirty) so they may relegate them off of the frontrunner list. My money was on Argo, but now I’m actually thinking Lincoln may sweep in there after it’s strong showing with nominations (the most with 12 noms). I do think it was a great movie, my favorite drama of the year. Or it can be Amour.
An interesting Oscar fact - With the nomination of Argo, GeorgeClooney (who produced with Affleck) has been Oscar nominated in the most categories ever: Actor, Directing, Supporting Actor, Original & Adapted screenplay, and today—Best Picture. Interesting.
Best of 2012/ My best in film list, including (from top to bottom) Argo (best of the year), Lincoln (drama), 21 Jump Street (comedy), Your Sister’s Sister (dramedy), Looper (sci-fi), The Avengers (action/adventure), Chronicle (psychological thriller), The Perks of Being a Wallflower(adaptation), and Django Unchained (social commentary). Read more on why I choose these here.
What’s good for the weekend? I just landed a couple of hours ago in Los Angeles where I will be spending the better part of my weekend for business and pleasure. I have a friend that just moved here so we are probably going to hang out on Saturday night and get into some trouble. ;) I love L.A. I had some really great times here in the past and you never know what movie star or celebrity you’re going to run into. Have a good one, everyone. I’m leaving you with a short list of some film-related posts I came across the web this week…
With TIFF 2012 done (well, at least for me), it’s time to focus on upcoming film releases that I am anticipating the most for the rest of the year. Can’t say that I have been generally impressed with alot of the movies that have been released so far (I’ll be really interested in seeing the Oscar-nominated films for this year) so here’s hoping the next few months will have potential. Here is a list of what I want to see the most:
Hello I Must Be Going: Others may be tired for seeing the exploration of older woman/younger man relationships but I’m not, especially in a potentially great and akward indie comedy.
Arbitrage: I tend to shy away from financial dramas but this one is has been getting some buzz; the story focuses on a man on the brink of losing it all as he tries to hide a massive mistake, starring Richard Gere and new indie darling Brit Marling.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower: Based on the critically-acclaimed (and often school assigned) book, this story truly explores not only what it means to be young but also what it means to embrace the very things about yourself that make you invisible to others. Watch the trailer and read my review from TIFF.
Looper: Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a young Bruce Willis in a Rian Johnson futuristic thriller. Enough said. Anticipate this.
Argo: Some of the best movies teach you about important moments in history that you would have probably never heard about otherwise. This third film from Ben Affleck explores the dark humor of using a pseudo-movie in a rescue mission during the Iranian hostage crisis of the 70s.
Seven Psychopaths: a film with all the makings of a cult classic and Sam Rockwell in all his weirdly dark and quirky glory. Watch the trailer and read my review from TIFF.
Flight: Yep, I think it’s time again for another Denzel Washington movie. This time he plays a pilot hailed as a hero for crash-landing a plane but keeping a secret about just what happened on the plane.
Les Miserables: As a straight up sucker for musicals (life is music and music is life afterall), and this is one I have yet to see/experience. If the trailer is any indication of what is in store for this film, I’m very exited for it to be released.
Zero Dark Thirty: Because I am really curious to learn about some of the story surrounding the hunt for Bin Laden, I am interested in seeing this film from Kathryn Bigelow.
Django Unchained// Quentin Tarantino is back! Here is the first trailer for his upcoming film project that I have been watching and waiting for.
My favorite moments from the trailer:
1. The opening song - “Aint No Grave (Can Hold My Body Down)”/Johnny Cash… Cash songs bring with it a smoothness and swagger that I think is great.
2. The close up on Leo DiCaprio’s face when he is introduced. I think this role will bring a bit of an bad boy playfulness that we haven’t really seen from him before.
3. The tagline - “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of vengence”… so Tarantino it ain’t even funny.
4. “What’s your name? Jango. The D is silent”.. LMAO! I’m not a huge Jamie Foxx fan but I have to admit he does have some great skills in delivery from a comedy perspective. (Update: Thanks to Will from Silver Emulsion for pointing out to me that the guy that Foxx is talking to in this moment is Franco Nero, the original Django made famous by the 1966 spaghetti western of the same name. You can watch this film classic in full here)
The Descendants: So, I guess I’m the only one in the world who thinks this movie is overrated? I will have to say that I had less than zero interest in ever seeing this movie. I decided to possibly watch it if it won Best Picture at the Oscars this year (but luckily it lost to the very worthy The Artist). But I found myself on a long international flights this week with not much of a selection of films on my personal monitor, so… The Descendants. The movie wasn’t a bad one at all; I just found it nothing super special. Yes, it was a solidly good story of a man coming to grips with his wife infidelity when he doesn’t have the benefit of confronting her as she is in a coma. Additionally, he is dealing with a decision about his family land that will affect his future and those around him forever. We witness some really touching moments between him and his kids and the closer he needs with his wife. I just have the impression that if George Clooney wasn’t in this movie, if someone else was in the lead role, this movie would have flown under the radar. Or maybe I’m missing something?
Big Fish: Yeah, it’s true. I had never seen this until this week. Another movie I saw while on an international flight back to the States. As I continue my exploration of Ewan McGregor movies after he stole my heart in last year’s movie Beginners, I just had to watch this one which has been touted as one of his best performances. The story follows a write (Bill Crudup) as he relives the stories, myths and tall tales of his dying father. What an very very odd (not surprising since it is a Tim Burton film) but very very good film. I actually saw alot similarities between Beginners and Big Fish - a moving exploration of a father-son relationship where the son comes to fully understand his father as a person right before he dies. McGregor switches roles between the two movies (playing the son in Beginners and the father at a younger age in Big Fish) but he succeeds in providing much of the heart in both. I’m not ashamed to admit that this movie made me cry.
This week (and the one before it) has been really hectic for me as I’ve been trying to NYC and Europe so this sound is fitting to represent my state of mine for the week. I’m finally home for awhile and can relax so I’m excited about that. Traveling takes alot out of you!
Movie Trailer of the Week:
Gangster Squad: You don’t know this about me but I am currently boycotting any film that Anthony Mackie is in. Why? Well, because he kinda ignored me (twice) when I saw him at Sundance, lol. Well, Mr. Mackie is smart. He jumped in a film of one of the only actors whose movies I can’t deny - Ryan Gosling (I kinda love him). Very smart man, indeed. I love that Ryan Gosling is going gangster. He has the looks for it, the swagger. The trailer has it all - a (scary) sinister Sean Penn, a reunion of Emma Stone and Gosling post-Crazy, Stupid, Love, the romanticism of the gangster era. I’m getting more excited by the minute.
Pop Culture Randomness:
o In perfect casting news, Andre 3000 will be stepping in as Jimi Hendrix in an upcoming biopic though apparently, as of right now, the film can’t use any original Hendrix music o Apparently, Quentin Tarentino is having trouble keeping a cast together for his upcoming film, Django Unchained; Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Kurt Russell, and Sasha Baron Cohen have all dropped out of the project. Knowing QT though, he’ll pull it together o Joss Whedon, the creator behind awesome TV shows like Buffy and Firefly and now the director of the record-breaking Avengers movie, lists his favorite Buffy episodes
Film-Inspired Fashion Moment:
A new photo for the upcoming film Ruby Sparks hit the internet this week and with it, we get to see more what will sure to be a very cute, sweet, and whimsical movie (can’t wait). I’m loving the bright orange dress with the auburn hair on Zoe Kazan; it comes off as very striking and something that I’m sure tells us alot of about Ruby’s character.