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 Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, unless otherwise noted. twitter | facebook | pinterest | tumblr | instagram | letterboxd | deviantart 

 

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Entries in DGA (16)

Tuesday
Jan122016

The DGA Nominees. Other directors still blind to the genius of Todd Haynes

Weep with me now my fellow people of good taste for the continual shunning of Todd Haynes at awards shows. Save one. Haynes will always have the Independent Spirits as loyal cheering squad. They've miraculously nominated him for his direction on every single one of his feature films.

Yes well before even the bulk of cinephiles realized he was going to be a legendary filmmaker. They nominated him for his strange triptych debut (Poison) and his then quite divisive/confounding but now universally admired sophomore effort ([safe]) and they've been true ever since. I bring this up to quench the tears and prepare for the worst on Thursday in case Carol is barely acknowledged which is what usually happens with Todd Haynes films on Oscar nomination morning. Even Far From Heaven (2002), his biggest hit, got a weak 4 nominations despite having the kind of "Spectacular Spectacular!" craftsmanship that at least nets filmmakers Moulin Rouge! honors (nope - Far From Heaven was stiffed in both Art Direction and Costumes. Hilarious to contemplate but true.) 

The Academy's directing branch is much more exclusive in numbers and arguably more sophisticated than the much larger voting body of the directors guild, but it's best to lower expectations; the world is often a mysteriously cruel place! Nevertheless it's frustrating that an auteur as singular and consistently wondrous as Todd Haynes has trouble getting honors from peers. He's in good company at least. Great artists in every field throughout time have had to decades for people to catch up with their greatness. Sometimes it didn't even happen until after they died. Remember that Alfred Hithcock never won a Directing Oscar and Douglas Sirk, one of of Todd Haynes's greatest influences, was never even nominated for one. Curiously Sirk, who specialized in the melodrama (those are often about women and you know how Oscar feels about women's pictures - Ewww!) was nominated by the DGA once, for Imitation of Life but an Oscar nomination did not follow. Generally Oscar will boot one of the DGA nominees for someone else but since they haven't gone 5/5 for awhile we're probably due for another year of exact crossover. 

We should probably talk about the actual nominees not just one of our all time favorite auteurs. So let's do that after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
May152015

Mad Links on Furiosa's Road

Animals The Film this addiction romantic drama opens today in 8 cities. Go see it!
...David Dastmalchian, who so kindly guest-blogged for us, stars (and wrote it). He'll be doing a Q&A at tonight's screening at Village East 7:45 PM for those of you in NYC.
AV Club Anne Hathaway to star in a sci-fi monster movie called Colossal wherein she'll be psychically linked to the big monster
The Screenblog  Interview with the costume designer on Kate Winslet's The Dressmaker

Weekend Must Read
I know you shouldn't feed the trolls but this article from the MRA blog "Return of Kings" about why you should boycott Mad Max Fury Road because it's feminist is great great comedy. Unintentionally but that hardly matters when there are so many laughs to be had. My favorite part is the whining about ruining this great "piece of American culture" [slaps forehead] D'Oh. It's an Australian franchise, dumbass!

MNPP in a 'Ways Not To Die' post celebrating Mad Max, Jason sneaks in a little 'George Miller always cared about women' message 

Hollywood's Ongoing Diversity Issues
Moviefone More embarrassing news for Hollywood's anti-woman issues. Sam Waterston and Martin Sheen, supporting players on Grace and Frankie, are making the same thing as Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, the star attractions. What the F***?!? 
Heat Vision Fox developing The New Mutants, which was an X-Men spinoff back in the day. I wouldn't expect them to stick with its extremely diverse original lineup, because Lord knows when the X-Men was adapted it got a lot less diverse and way more narrowly obssessed with three alpha (white) males: Wolverine, Professor X, and Magneto
Women in Hollywood The DGA is part of the problem when it comes to underemployment of women
The Guardian Ava DuVernay might direct Marvel's Black Panther. since Marvel is looking for something more "diverse" and that word is apparently an actual quote? She seems like a weird fit since she excels at performance and humanistic drama and surely she has better things to do. Still, just when you hoped you could stop caring about superhero news this comes along. Obviously we'd watch it despite waning interest from the superhero glut.

Mad Men List Mania
Arts.Mic has a "definitive" listing of best characters with Peggy Olson, Don Draper, and Joan Holloway right where they belong in the top 3.
Rolling Stone same concept but with a different order and much love for Roger Sterling and the long departed Sal Romano in the top ten!
Esquire 100 Ways Mad Men might end. It says a lot about the show that with only 1 episode left it still retains its mysteries
Salon the 10 best Mad Men episodes from 'The Other Woman' (Joan showcase) to 'Babylon' (Peggy showcase)

Showtune Hot Song To Go
Matthew Eng reminded me of this. God I love this. Wouldn't it be great to see Maya Rudolph's PRINCE(ss) live?

 

Sunday
Feb082015

Podcast: Jupiter Etcetera

Remember us? It's been a month. How did that happen? Nathaniel, Nick, Katey and Joe are finally reunited. We had intended to talk Oscar nominations but we're so far past Nomination Morning that the conversation has a mind of its own and just goes where it may. Nathaniel keeps trying to bring up Nightcrawler and Ben Affleck, Amy Adams, Magic Mike and Djimon Hounsou's agent work there way into the conversation, too.

[42 Minutes]
00:01 We're back. DGA Awards & Birdman
10:54 Eddie Redmayne vs Michael Keaton vs Bradley Cooper
19:30 Original Song: Selma, The LEGO Movie
23:11 Beyond the Lights & Gugu Mbatha-Raw
27:20 Seventh SonJupiter Ascending 


 

 

REFERENCED IN THIS PODCAST
American Sniper Conversation from the podcast "Fighting in the War Room" 

Please to enjoy and continue the rambling conversation in the comments. You can listen at the bottom of the post or download from iTunes

Jupiter Ascending & More

Sunday
Feb082015

DGA Chooses Birdman. But Who Wins BAFTA?

It's tough to call this a "surprise" exactly, given that Birdman recently took hom both the PGA's top producing honor and SAG's Best Ensemble but now the celebrated intricate metashowbiztragicomedywhatsit has won the DGA. Alejandro González Iñárritu was previously nominated for Babel. But this isn't actually his first DGA win.

More on Birdman's DGA and BAFTA Predictions after the jump

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jan132015

DGA Nominations: Eastwood is Fashionably Late Yet Again

The Directors Guild of America have spoken and raised the Eastwood flag yet again. The 84 year old director cruised to a nomination for his conservative military drama American Sniper. It's his fourth nomination with the DGA. He has won twice before at the DGA and also received a Lifetime Achievement Award. The Academy has nominated him even more often for directing as American Sniper will be his fifth Best Director nomination should it come to pass. Eastwood has a habit of crashing the party late. He did it in 2004 with Million Dollar Baby when everyone was preparing for an Aviator sweep. He did it in 2006 with the tiny grossing nearly black and white foreign language film Letters from Iwo Jima and he looks like he'll do it again on Thursday for American Sniper.


DGA NOMINEES:

Wes Anderson, Grand Budapest Hotel
Clint Eastwood American Sniper
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Birdman
Richard Linklater, Boyhood
Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game

I promised you back when the Globe nominations were first announced that the Academy would never come up with a list that good for Best Director. While we won't know the truth of my prediction until Thursday morning, the DGA choices don't bode well for a happy Thursday morning for many of us. Congratulations to the nominees but, all due respect, Eastwood & Tyldum replacing Duvernay and Fincher is trading down if we're judging by the directing jobs in question and not by legendary reputations and best picture heat respectively.

But here's something to give you hope if you're already grousing about these nominations: In Ye Olden Times (i.e. 1970 through 2008) the DGA was considered the single most predictive precursor. This was not because the DGA lineup was always Oscar's lineup for Best Director. In fact, it rarely matches 5/5 but it was called that because it was the single most predictive of the Best Picture race (not Best Director). That is no longer the case -- or if it is it's lost all meaning since there can be up to 10 nominees for Best Picture now so it's easy to call five of them. But in Ye Olden Times, i.e. up until seven years ago, today's announcement would mean that American Sniper was probably going to edge out another movie we thought was more strongly in the mix like The Theory of Everything or Selma.

Here are some recent history switcheroos from DGA to Oscar

2013 DGA (4/5) Paul Greengrass, Captain Phillips. Oscar replaced with Alexander Payne for Nebraska.
2012 DGA (2/5) Hooper, Affleck, Bigelow. Oscar replaced with Haneke, Zeitiln, and Russell
2011 DGA (4/5) Fincher, Dragon Tattoo. Oscar replaced with Malick for Tree of Life
2010 DGA (4/5) Nolan, Inception. Oscar replaced with the Coen Bros for True Grit
2009 DGA (5/5) 
2008 DGA (4/5) Nolan, Dark Knight. Oscar replaced with Stephen Daldry for The Reader
2007 DGA (4/5) Sean Penn, Into the Wild. Oscar replaced with Jason Reitman for Juno 
2006 DGA (3/5) Dayton/Faris and Condon. Oscar replaced with Greengrass and Eastwood 
2005 DGA (5/5)

There's not much of a pattern though both of the recent years with perfect matches were very much consensus years where it was the same five titles all the time. 2014 is not that kind of year. When Oscar makes a change they trade both up and down... the only throughline, and it has exceptions, is that Oscar's directing branch tends to be a little more artistically inclined than DGA's more populist tastes. So the people who didn't make it today are still in it: James Marsh has a BAFTA nod to recommend him, Ava Duvernay has a critically acclaimed resonant film, Damien Chazelle is a new boy wonder (and they love those since its the old boys club) and David Fincher is, well, David Fincher with a huge hit. One of them could surely still knock one of the DGA contenders out. But who and which?

Final predictions soon. Need some time to think on it. Thoughts?