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Ashley Judd, Pulp Queen

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Entries in film critics (177)

Thursday
Nov302017

New York Film Critic Circle's Best of 2017

by Nathaniel R

Founded in 1935 the New York Film Critics Circle remains one of the two most important film critics organizations in the country (the other being the Los Angeles Film Critics Association). They might not have the influencing power they once had when there weren't 30+ similar organizations but people still hear them out each year before the "critics named this the best" accolades start sounding like ambient noise. Last year they were heavy on Oscar frontrunners or presumed runners up in virtually every single category. Will their winners be such Oscar favorites this year. Time will tell.

It was quite a day for A24 with two of their films being the only multiple winners: Lady Bird (Best Picture and Best Actress) and The Florida Project (Best Director and Best Supporting Actor).  Complete list of winners including interesting statistics follow after the jump...

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Wednesday
Nov292017

Call Me With Kindness

by Jason Adams

Call Me By Your Name is turning out to be the sort of success none of us saw coming sixteen months ago when it was first announced that the director of I Am Love was tackling a little gay love story. It just broke the 2017 record for per theater average over the weekend, and its reviews have been unanimously stellar. It won Best Feature at the Gothams Monday night, it topped the Independent Spirit nominations, and it’s expected to stick around racking up such prizes all awards season long.

And yet there’s been one complaint that’s nagged at the movie from a determined bunch of folks (including the film’s own writer, legend James Ivory) since it first screened at Sundance in January – a supposed shyness about nudity and gay sex. Ivory told Variety it’s a “pity” there's no full-frontal nudity in the film, while The Guardian called the movie “coy” and Slate called it out for a “lack of explicit sex.” One shot in particular has rankled these folks the most – a seemingly old-fashioned pan out the window just as the characters finally approach their erotic consummation.

The film’s director Luca Guadagnino, who probably had to look up the word “coy” in the dictionary the first time it was lobbed at him for this, is nonplussed by the reaction – he told Vulture:

“It’s really something I don’t understand. It’s as if you said there are not enough shots of Shanghai. I don’t understand why there has to be Shanghai in this movie.”

I’m inclined to agree with him. Not only because I found the film sexy as hell, erotic in languorous, voyeuristic ways that movies don’t really approach anymore. Its sense of tactility, for sweat and fabric and skin, and its often-prurient stares – up the legs of swimming trunks, for example - are a welcome shock to the system that makes the forbidden seem commonplace, easy...

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Thursday
Nov022017

Links

Village Voice Bilge Elbiri on a film review that changed his live (J Hoberman's 1992 piece on Orson Welles' Othello) - lovely personal piece
Nick Davis Chicago film festival jury picks and his own precise takes on the movies screened including high profile gems like Call Me By Your Name, and several foreign film Oscar submissions
Esquire Bryan Cranston must be seeking to sabotage his Oscar hopes this year with this admission that he's rooting for Trump to succeed
Huffington Post talks to Melissa Leo about Novitiate and becoming a gay icon with those "Consider..." ads

Another Mag amazing photos of the well decorated sets of Call Me By Your Name
EW Moulin Rouge!'s stage musical adaptation sets its debut for next summer in Boston. Which means we're probably looking at a Broadway transfer and contention for the June 2019 Tonys.
SBS an amazing interview with Katya and Trixie whose new series The Trixie & Katya Show starts real soon
Vanity Fair sits down with still-rising Tessa Thompson about her stereotype defying career
Esquire jumps on the "give I, Tonya Oscars" bandwagon. I tell you what dear readers, the ease with which this movie is getting people excited when I though it was genuinely not good (mockumentary stale, politically problematic, and cheap-looking) is going to make this Oscar season a loooong one for me (sigh). Ah well. You can't love everything... or every Oscar season. 

Friday
Jul212017

Brief Notes on Baby Driver and Spider-Man

by Nathaniel R

I'd be remiss if I didn't publicly thank Chris Feil for the extra work he did while I was away. Such a good hire. (Send him your love and follow him on Twitter!) Herewith 150 words each on two movies Chris already reviewed but I wanted to chime in briefly just cuz.

BABY DRIVER
As some of you know I just returned from the National Critics Institute. In one session we read a curated batch of stellar articles and we discussed in fine detail as a group what made them pop and resonate...

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Wednesday
Jul192017

An Ode to Julia for Julia


To get to The Oyster Club in Mystic Connecticut, you take Main Street into Historic Downtown Mystic and turn left on Water Street. If you reach "Mystic Pizza," made famous in the 1988 sleeper hit of the same name that first won Julia Roberts attention, you’ve gone too far. If you start thinking about Julia Roberts on your way to a totally unrelated assignment, your first-ever restaurant review, you’ve also gone too far...

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