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Entries in Spectre (19)

Monday
Feb292016

...About Those Oscar Musical Numbers.

Dancin' Dan here to talk about what used to be my favorite part of the Oscar ceremony.

Remember those giganticoften-confounding production numbers set to the nominees for Best Original Song? They were crazy, ambitious, and compulsively watchable, bring levity to the alternately serious and teary acceptance speeches that usually dominate Oscar ceremonies. Even the times they just had a person stand there and sing, those moments seemed chosen because the songs were sung by a superstar who could easily fill the whole room with just their presence and incredible voice*. Unfortunately, those kinds of performances seem to have fallen out of vogue. Barring the odd actressexual dance party and Lego-fest, the days of crazy musical extravaganzas on the Oscars are long-gone. And I would argue the show as a whole is a less joyous, celebratory affair without them. For proof, look at this year's performances.

Set aside for now the fact that two of the best nominees didn't even get a performance slot, and let's take this year's performances on their merits. They were, for the most part, DULL.  Herewith, a few thoughts on each...

Click to read more ...

Monday
Feb152016

Newish to Watch at Home: Crimson Peak, Trumbo, Grandma, Etc.

Newish on DVD/BluRay

The 33 Antonio Banderas / Chilean miner rescue story
99 Homes the other acclaimed housing crisis movie
Black Mass the gangster movie with Johnny Depp, buried under alien makeup, plays a gangster. Watch out for great performances on the periphery from Peter Sarsgaard and Julianne Nicholson
Crimson Peak from Guillermo Del Toro. Critics were divided or had many reservations but those who loved it really loved it. Here's a rabidly pro piece nicely titled "Ghosts are Movies".

LUNCHTIME POLL:
Would you rather...

- Be seduced by Tom Hiddleston?
- Gain access to all of Mia Wasikowska's money?
- Marry into Jessica Chastain's family?


Girls S4 -I've definitely lost track of this show. Weirdly I quit with an episode I couldn't have loved more (S3E7 "Beach House")
Grandma - Lily Tomlin gets her own well deserved star vehicle and drives it superbly
• Love the Coopers - Diane Keaton earns a paycheck
Spectre  -the first Bond I haven't seen in theaters in some time. It just kind of happened, the skipping of it
Steve Jobs -the intense three act drama starring Michael Fassbender & Kate Winslet
Togetherness S1 the highly undervalued HBO dramedy. Melanie Lynskey and the rest of the cast are just super
Trumbo in case you'd like to discover why it did so well in the precursors

NEW TO STREAMING
Netflix added Dope, The Face of Love (a romantic drama misfire from The Bening), Open Season, and the 2007 Best Picture nominee Atonement (tomorrow) and by the end of the month they'll add Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon: Sword of Destiny which looks terrible *sniffle* despite being something we've looked forward to for so long. Amazon Prime added Solomon Kane a fantasy action film starring James Purefoy, Max von Sydow and Rachel Hurd-Wood that Radius TWC buried in 2009 (never opened in the States but played elsewhere). By the end of the month they'll add Digging For Fire from Joe Swanberg.

Which of these will you be catching up with?

Friday
Jan222016

Ranking All 80 Winners of Best Original Song (Plus Where This Year's Contenders Would Place)

Glenn here with a look at everybody’s favourite category – best original song! Okay, so, sure, even if this year’s roster for best original song doesn’t look like a vintage one for the category, there’s actually some fun to be had when you consider who will win.

  • Will Diane Warren finally win an Oscar on her eighth nomination? And how strange will it be to see her win for a song from a documentary about sexual abuse alongside Lady Gaga rather than one of the chart-busting hit-singles that her first six nominations were for (lest we forget, Beyond the Lights’ “Grateful” didn’t chart because, well, Rita Ora).
  • Will an opera tune win for the first time? No work of opera has ever been nominated if my research is correct, which is kinda neat even though I think the song is dirge (albeit appropriately so for the film).
  • Will all the talk of diversity in cinema this year give us a winner that is either black (The Weeknd), transgender (Antony Hegarty), or gay (Sam Smith)?
  • It’s been 18 years since the last occurrence of a movie winning both a Razzie and an Oscar. Plenty of films have been nominated for both of the awards, but neither has won an award from each since Wall Street in 1988. Could Fifty Shades of Grey break a very unique drought?

Now, naturally because we all love lists so I thought it would be fun to rank every winner of Oscar’s best original song category and see where this year’s contenders would fit in when they take home that golden statue. What could possible go wrong with a completely subjective ranking of over 80 songs?!? Oh dear. You’ve been warned, I guess. Two things to note: I have not included "The Last Time I Saw Paris" from Lady Be Good since even the writer of that 1941 song was angry it was given an award when it wasn't written for the movie (it was subsequently the impetus for the category's rule change). Secondly, I have tried to rank as close to original film versions as possible so some songs that were improved upon in later recordings (like Nat King Cole’s “Mona Lisa”) may not rank as high. And, yes, before you ask, I am the person that hates Mary Poppins and who has never seen much of the appeal of the overtly twee “Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head”.

Go over the rainbow after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Friday
Jan152016

"Perhaps Margot Robbie in a Bubble Bath Could Explain This One To Me"

Now that we've had 24 hours to process the Oscar nominations I polled Team Experience for one last Oscar Nomination reaction roundup. Which nomination did each of our contributors find most mystifying? Here are their answers which amused me so I hope you feel the same. 

Please bear in mind that these items do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the management. We each have our pet peeves and our "achievements" we just can't with. Share your headscratchers with us in the comments. What's still antagonizing you this morning a full 24 hours after getting used to it as an "Academy Award Nominee" 

Individual targets after the jump...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Dec262015

Link Wars Episode ∞: The Blog Awakens

Guardian has a piece on the 7 best financial films for the release of The Big Short. Confession: I'm always surprised when internet lists remember that films existed before 1990. And this list has 4 of them [gasp]
CHUD Have you heard Radiohead's Spectre theme. The studio went with Sam Smith instead for the latest Bond
Variety Tupac Shakur biopic All Eyez On Me is coming your way (and filming already). Given the massive success of Straight Outta Compton expect more hiphop/rap biopics 

Gothamist Oooh. AMC Village 7 has reopened in Manhattan with spiffy new seats and bathrooms. I haven't been there in years but will have to return now. Now if only Film Forum and Village East would get renovations and they'd burn down the Angelika, Cinema Village, and Lincoln Plaza and build new non-tiny, non-crappy, subwayrumble-free arthouse theaters somewhere else... wouldn't that be swell?! 
MNPP the only recap of the recent Tom Hardy junket journalist dustup that you need is right here. Seriously who cares?! Stars cancel or push back interviews ALL THE TIME. 
Comics Alliance prepare for your heart to melt with these photos of Chris Pratt visiting a children's hospital 

Best of '15
Florida Film Critics went with Mad Max Fury Road as best of the year in 4 categories and gave Daisy Ridley Breakthrough for Star War: The Force Awakens
Movie Scene Kyle Turner's top 15 from Appropriate Behavior (yay!) to Mistress America (say what?)
Playbill 10 biggest social media moments for Broadway this year. Naturally Hamilton made the biggest splash
Theater Mania names the 9 best Off Broadway shows... i dont understand this number 9? It has to be 10 or 15 this year. I mean, MATH. SYMMETRY. LIST RULES. 
The Film Stage names 50 "Overlooked" films... though the criteria for overlooked is sligthly murky. Tangerine and James White, for example, didn't get even a tiny percentile of the box office they deserved but they did win spirit and gotham nods and in Tangerine's case a lot of press... which has to count for something. Very happy to see Appropriate Behavior (which you'll remember I loved nearly two years ago at its festival debut) and Victoria on the list though. Hopefully Mustang's inclusion (Team Experience loves it) will look silly after the fact if the Academy nominates it and it proves a late-bloomer at the box office. But for now with only $100,000 in the bank at only 3 theaters, it deserves this list placement.

More Star Wars... The Force Won't Go Back To Sleep
Digital Spy People will post ANYTHING about Star Wars for traffic. Here we consider the possibility of a gay Star Wars romance between Finn & Poe 
Gizmodo award winning interactive fan animations - Love the Grand Prize winner on Tattooine.
Vulture polls several celebrities about the best order to view the 7 Star Wars films in. The correct answer is obviously 4,5,6,7 (ignoring 1,2,3) but there's a lot of variety in the responses
/Film concept designs for BB-8 
American Leather Jacket for only $209 you can try to look at cool as Finn or Poe from Star Wars with the jacket they trade off onscreen
Academy Conversations the filmmaking team talks about production - I haven't watched it in full yet but it's nice to see Michael Kaplan represented there. He's one of the great costume designers and has had ZERO academy attention. That's probably because his best work comes in stylish contemporary film (Fight Club, Burlesque, Flashdance, Mr & Mrs Smith) or genre films (Blade Runner, Star Trek, The Force Awakens) and we know how Oscar feels about both of those kinds of pictures.

And if you haven't checked out the Emo Kylo Ren twitter page, do so. Laugh, you will. Know that it's more fun than a yub-nubbing Ewok treehouse party. This is my favorite but there were many many choices for that honor...

 

 

Monday
Nov162015

Box Office: Bollywood Hoopla

Amir here, with the weekend’s box office report. As predicted last week, the top two films didn’t change at the high end of the pile. Spectre is doing impressive enough business in the US, but its record-breaking haul in China was the real gain. The total worldwide gross of the film surpassed the half billion-dollar mark. There were four new wide releases, three of which landed in the top ten and, embarrassingly, I hadn’t heard of a single one of them before sitting down for this column, so let’s give each a crack.

Love the Coopers, is a family Christmas comedy, and because all mentions of Christmas in November should be banned, we’ll skip over it—it was right behind The Peanuts Movie in third place. The 33, the Antonio Banderas-led film about Chilean miners did as well as a film about such a dark—literally and figuratively—tragedy can do. The real story, however, is India’s Prem Ratan Dhan Payo. It’s an open secret that Bollywood films do really well without significant advertising, but this one is doing even better than usual. Already having the best opening of all time for a Bollywood film in India in the bag, where it opened on the 4-day Diwali weekend, Salman Khan and Sonam Kapoor’s newest venture has the best opening weekend for an Indian film in the UK and one of the top five best in the US.

The Weekend's Top 5
Spectre $35.4m (cum. $130.7m)
The Peanuts Movie $24.2m (cum. $82.4m)
Love the Coopers $8.4m (new)
The Martian $6.7m (cum. $207.4m)
The 33 $5.8m

On the limited side of things, Angelina Jolie’s By the Sea grossed a dismal $9k per screen—it’s a shame; this film looks gorgeous—and James White, one of the under the radar gems at this year’s TIFF fared slightly better, but it’s hard to gauge its success given it’s only playing on one screen.

What did you see this weekend? Are you excited to see Prem Ratan Dhan Payo?