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Entries in Captain America (33)

Sunday
Mar242013

Link Be a Lady Tonight

Film.com Excellent piece on the online coverage of Lynne Ramsay's no-show on Jane Got a Gun. There's just so much default anti-woman rhetoric online. Crazy that this rarely ever improves.
Slant Magazine Our friend Kurt recently visited Las Vegas and its glorious gawdy movie memories came with
AV Club Might HBO let people buy HBO Go without a cable subscription? That's such a good idea. A ton of people I know have dropped cable (too expensive) altogether since they use their computers more than their TVs. I would if I could, too.
Film.com strong list of 50 best opening sequences in movies ever. Love the inclusion of Cabaret, La Dolce Vita, and Manhattan. Bonus points: you don't have to click 50 times or even 5 to see the whole list.

MovieLine the opening credits of Oz: The Great and Powerful. I knew these would show up soon. Best part of the movie, easily showcasing charm, creativity, and wit.
CHUD "Hey girl... NO GIRL, PUT DOWN THE GUN!" Ryan Gosling is quitting acting for awhile
Empire Robert Redford could join the Marvel Universe starting with Captain America 2. (He would'a made such a great Captain America back in the 60s)
Timothy Brayton adss another toughtful thumbs up review to No's increasingly large critical pile. Seriously, what are you waiting for? Best movie of 2013 thus far. 
Coming Soon Wentworth Miller conitnues on as a screenwriter post Stoker. He'll adapt the thriller novel Scare Me

Art & Toons
Wimp.com a really amazing video about early animation process at Fleischer Studios. It's so crazy how much factory like manpower and technical innovation went in to things that are so computerized now.
i09 a neat very short animated cartoon on Marvel iconography from X-Men to Captain America

And... How webcomix make money, illustrated with 8 bit animation - thanks to Drawn for pointing it out

Saturday
May052012

Review: "The Avengers"

This review was originally published in my column at Towleroad...

If Agent Natasha Romanoff can interrupt an espionage interrogation to attend...

If Thor can find a way back to Earth without his rainbow bridge...

If Tony Stark can stop erecting enormous arguably phallic odes to himself for a moment...

If Captain America can get back in shape now that he's out of deep freeze...

And if Dr Bruce Banner can come out of self-imposed exile to join Marvel's THE AVENGERS, than I really ought to be able to review some movies again. Let's go.

 

After roughly four years of movie-length commercials for The Avengers (formerly known as: Iron Man 2, Thor, and Captain America: The First Avenger) "Earth's Mightiest Heroes" have finally assembled. To fans of the superhero genre, this probably feels like an impossible dream realized. To non-fans of the superhero genre this might play like the perfect time for a showstopping climax -take a bow and give mere mortals some movies again! The latter group should brace themselves. This particular blockbuster is lively enough to greenlight an even bigger movie family of men (and hopefully some women) in tights. MORE AFTER THE JUMP...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Apr092012

Captain the Second (and Hugo Awards. No, Not That Hugo)

The Hugo Awards for science fiction were announced over the weekend. While they mostly focus on literature, they do have one film prize. And the nominees are...

Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form)
Captain America: The First Avenger, screenplay by Christopher Markus and Stephan McFeely, directed by Joe Johnston (Marvel)
Game of Thrones (Season 1), created by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss; written by David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Bryan Cogman, Jane Espenson, and George R. R. Martin; directed by Brian Kirk, Daniel Minahan, Tim van Patten, and Alan Taylor (HBO)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, screenplay by Steve Kloves; directed by David Yates (Warner Bros.)
Hugo, screenplay by John Logan; directed by Martin Scorsese (Paramount)
Source Code, screenplay by Ben Ripley; directed by Duncan Jones (Vendome Pictures)

Here's a full list of the nominees if you're looking for reading suggestions. 

The Captain America nomination reminded me that another Captain America film was announced for April 4th, 2014 in case you plan two years in advance for your ticket purchases. Titling this one could be challenging. Imagine it: Captain America: The First Avenger... Two!  Captain America: The Second Avenger? I kid. Obviously they'll just go with Captain America 2... because the Marvel Cinematic Universe doesn't get all Batman/DC creative with their titles.

What excuse will they come up with to get the good Captain's shirt off this time? He doesn't have to do any more super serum transformation. Pity. Bonus points to whoever comes up with the best plot point for disrobal in the comments.

Summer 2013 believes in the intricate body suit

While we're on the future blockbuster topic, after the jump is the summer calendar for 2013 and beyond...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Mar262012

May the Links Be Ever In Your Favor

The House Next Door Poster Lab: Cosmopolis "a tame puppy to the preview's rabid dog"
The Mary Sue a Captain America surprise for soldier and son. Awwww 
24 Frames the Genesis Awards, honoring animal friendly media, were handed out. Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Born to be Wild won best feature and best documentary respectively.
The Hairpin why 1995 was the best year for movies

The Wrap Frank Langella's new memoir dishes about other famous actors, including affairs with Rita Hayworth and La Liz.
The Sheila Variations anatomy of two pratfalls by physical actors Elvis Presley and Cary Grant.
The Wrap interesting. The great X-Men writer Chris Claremont also wanted Angela Bassett to play Storm when he first imagined his team on movie screens. And he wanted Kathryn Bigelow to direct. 

Hunger Links
Serious Film Michael's review of The Hunger Games 
Cinema Blend 10 differences between The Hunger Games books and movies. 
The Wrap the breakdown of the audience for this massive opening. Not the usual kind.  

Wednesday
Jan252012

Farewell Oscar Hopeful! (Snubs That Hurt Us)

Last night at 4 AM this was the only image my brain would settle on...

I don't normally spend time in the middle of the night thinking of Fassbender lying naked in bed (Shush!). It's just that I had the worst insomnia I'd had in months. As I stared down at this still image in my state of delirious sleep deprivation I'm reasonably certain that he stared back, his eyes shifting just a little. He must have seen a mirror image of his vacant orbs and haunted zombie expressionless. Only with less handsomeness.

Brandon's addiction was sex and mine is the Oscars but either way we are powerless against our disease. Perhaps it was all the Oscar Morn Excitement catching up to me? Fassy's frozen image reminded me that I forgot to offer my condolescences to the Oscar Forgotten yesterday. Some people and cinematic contributions you'd be really happy to spend another 32 days celebrating but the time has come to say goodbye. [sniffle]

Farewell Oscar Hopeful. Better Luck Next Time
8 Snubs/Omissions That Hurt The Most

08 Melancholia Best Anything
Given that mad Dane Lars von Trier's sole nomination is in songwriting (find a more hilarious Oscar statistic, I dare you!) we never suspected that this would be an Oscar film. But the tiny scattered awards crumbs for his dreamy apocalyptic depression metaphor, arguably his best film in a decade, allowed us to pretend in a feverish bipolar sort of way that miracles would occur and it would wake up as the nomination leader. No, not really. But it's a shame that that masterful Cinematography and Kirsten Dunst's spooky narcoleptic bride won so little traction.

Click for 7 more

Click to read more ...

Monday
Dec192011

39 Original Songs Aim To Have Oscar Singing Along...

If you've ever read Inside Oscar, you'll know that the Best Original Song category at the Oscars has been infuriating people since time immemorial. They regularly snub instant classics and even when a great movie song is nominated it will usually lose. The music branch gets far less flak from the media than other controversial Academy subcategories like the Documentary group or the Foreign Language Film nominating committee but that's only because everyone knows that songwriting has very little to do with the actual art of cinema ... unless you're writing an original musical. Brett McKenzie's work on The Muppets aside, that really only happens once a decade or so.

Four other quirks to know. 

  1. The music branch HATES Madonna as a songwriter (the list of classic songs snubbed is alarming and her W.E. song "Masterpiece" has already been jettisoned) but likes her as a singer (both times she has sung other people's material -- Evita and Dick Tracy -- wins followed).
  2. They actually have an average point system to determine nominations rather than a  hierarchal ballot like most categories so you can theoretically torpedo someone you don't like by giving them a bad score.
  3. Three, a maximum of two songs from any movie can be nominated so if you are the only person who wrote an original musical that year, you can't hog the category even though you did more work than anyone else.
  4. They can't even be trusted to let the original performers perform them on the ceremony (Hi Beyoncé!) so don't get too excited about seeing Robbie Williams, Elton John, Zooey Deschanel, Lady Gaga, Jordin Sparks, Melissa Manchester, or any of the other celebs who sang this year's eligible tunes.

 

I'm rooting for Captain America's "Star Spangled Man" because it's a) awesome and b) actually used for narrative purpose rather than end credit pleasantries. Both are so rare in this category! So watch it get shut out.

Here's the eligibility list with as many music videos as I could find after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Dec102011

Oscar's FX Semi-Finalists: Superheroes, Aliens, Dinosaurs, Mermaids

Wouldn't it be weird if Oscar had finalist rounds for all categories and not just a few of them? Can you imagine a runway elimination for Costume Design or a Supporting Actress pre-nom bake-off? But, bringing us back to reality, few categories do this. The effects branch does and after having a looksie at this year's showiest films, they've narrowed the Oscar posssibilities for "Best Achievement in Visual Effects"  to 15. We're not sure why there are so many steps in the process but they'll narrow it down again in early January to 10 before 5 are named at the end of January on Oscar Nomination Morning (Or what Nathaniel calls Christmas Eve... Christmas being Oscar Night, his favorite holiday!)

The semi-finalist list bring us a few dinosaurs, a handful of mythical creatures, several aliens, a dozen colorful superheroes, a scary school (herd? pack? fleet?) of mermaids, and many robots from small to super sized.

Captain America: The First Avenger 
Cowboys & Aliens 
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 
Hugo 
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Real Steel
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Sucker Punch

Super 8
Thor
Transformers: Dark of the Moon
The Tree of Life
X-Men: First Class

DINOSAURS! There's no award for Best Supporting Visual Effects but I always root for that film even though it's rarely nominated. I mean how are you going to ignore the visual effects of Eternal Sunshine back in its day. But they did.  So this year's I'm really pulling for the audacious creation of the earth segment from The Tree of Life since we obviously can't have the destruction of the earth in Melancholia. Together they're a Double Scoop of Circle of Life Awesome.

OMISSIONS! Effects work that didn't make it to the finals include Tarsem's warring god boytoys in The Immortals, the elaborate visual wows of The Adventures of Tintin, the apocalyptic beauty of Melancholia's opening/closing segments, and the yellow clouds enlarged craniums alient whatnots and gooey green CGI messes of Green Lantern -- someone mop that up!

FOUR NOMINEES... BUT THEY ARE LEGION

On Oscar nomination morning five films will be left standing and four lucky craftsmen will reap the benefits for each film, their names to be determined by the producers. It's interesting to note how many people work on a movie's effects sequences versus how many are nominated for what the teams deliver unto us. Let's take Captain America for an example. The Special Effects department which does models, pyrotechnics, explosives, snow, molds and other sundries and whatnots numbers 40. The Visual Effects department, which does ... uh... everything else [marvel at my intricate knowledge of the process! *snort*] numbers nearly 800 (!!!). Generally speaking one assumes the producers merely pick department heads because most of the job descriptions of those nominated are simply  "visual effects supervisor" though sometimes you'll get a "special effects supervisor" from the sister department. And occassionally something a lot more specific like last year's nomination for Michael Owens on Hereafter whose job title reads "designer: tsunami sequence, visual effects supervisor".

Beyond possibly previously Oscared Craig Barron (2 noms / 1 win) I'm not sure who would get Captain America's nomination (should it receive one) since there are several visual effects supervisors most of whom would be first time nominees. But I think the producers ought to think outside the box hyperbaric chamber and consider Simon Waterson, Chris Evans' trainer because this here was the movie's single greatest visual effect...

 

I rest my case.

If they need further convincing -- perhaps even towards an honorary Oscar --  please to note that Simon Waterson was also responsible for Daniel Craig's Casino Royale body. You owe Simon Waterson, moviegoer, even if you don't know it!

Which 33% of the semi-finalists do you think will call themselves Oscar Nominees come January's end?

Oscar Predictions -Visual Categories