Thursday, March 30, 2006

The New is just around the Corner !!!

After a few months of Oscar obsession or just plain dis-interest (and/or other things taking over my life for a while), I AM BACK - or at least soon.

Beginning next week, brand new reviews of such films as Clean, V For Vendetta, Inside Man, Sympathy for Lady Vengeance, The Wayward Cloud, The Proposition, Wordplay, Hard Candy, American Dreamz and many others. Also, my coverage of the Philadelphia Film Festival and the new film by Matthew Barney (starring his wife Bjork - God she is beautiful !!)

Also updates to The Top 10 Project, as well as many other lists on The Cinematheque (my Top Ten Vault included) AND a quick (and early) look at next year's Oscar Race.

So check back next week (after my return from The Pez Convention in Connecticut - yes I said Pez Convention) for a hell of a lot of new things...

Monday, March 20, 2006

Is this a BAD Thing !!???

You Are 80% Evil
You are very evil. And you're too evil to care.Those who love you probably also fear you. A lot.

Monday, March 13, 2006

The Oscar Project is Upon Us !!

There is a hell of a lot going on behind the scenes at The Cinematheque right now. Recently I came across a cinephile who is attempting to see EVERY film ever nominated for Best Picture (which btw, is 453 motion pictures). His lists can be found right here. This has inspired me to do the same (a thing I've wanted to accomplish for a long time now), so I'm going to sit down and see all of them this year. Yes I said this year. So far I have seen 222 [or 49%], but I plan on seeing all 222 of the previously viewed ones over again, leaving out this past year's crop and The Philadelphia Story, Casablanca & Annie Hall, since I've seen all of those recently and can check them off the list. which means I have just 445 to go (450, if I don't finish by January/February of 2007).

Combine this with my desire to rewatch all those canonical films before composing My Greatest Films List (and seeing those never before seen) AND still keeping up on new releases and review duty (a thing that after my usual February-Oscar-Countdown respite, I'll be starting up again very soon), I may have to see 750+ films this year in order to accomplish this feat. And if Ed Gonzalez can do 800+ a year, then so can I dammit (even with a slow start).

You can view my Oscar Project page over at The Cinematheque right now, but it is still under a (wee) bit of construction, so please forgive me (for now). As I alluded to above, new reviews will be coming soon as well, so watch out for those.

Monday, March 06, 2006

It's not that bad guys...

Here is what Ann Coulter - that leggy Right-Wing Skank - said about what some are calling "Black Sunday" (Oscar Night):

the snub of Brokeback and failure to award the suicide bombers' film an Oscar "a strategic retreat" by the left, and something normal Americans should find heartening.

Sure, some of the more conservative fuddy duddy's of The Academy may have voted a "straight" party line ticket, but I honestly do not think Brokeback's loss was due to anti-homosexual feelings in Hollywood. Crash was about L.A. The vast majority of AMPAS members live in and around L.A. Simple as that.

There are those (like the aforementioned Ms. Coulter) that believe Gayness to be a sentient form of evil, and there are those that make a joke out of Brokeback Mountain (even Heath Ledger has guffawed and giggled at the film) when making a joke about films such as Schindler's List and/or Do The Right Thing would have been (rightfully so) construed as racist, and there is a lot of backwards sliding going on after eight years of forward thinking (aka: the Clinton Years), but Crash's victory is most likely nothing more than The Academy having bad taste (although I liked the film, but only mildly). The Oscar rarely goes to the actual best picture. You have to go back to 1978 and The Deer Hunter to find the last time the Oscar went to the film I actually thought was the best of the five nominees.

In conclusion - and then we can all go on to the future - I will say that obvious Homophobia did play a part in Crash's victory (never has such a runaway frontrunner not won), it's not the only factor. Let's all get the fuck over it and move the fuck on !!!

Next up for me? My long-awaited and greatly procrastinated Greatest Films List will find it's way to The Cinematheque this coming Summer, but first I am going back and taking second looks at most of the films I think belong in such a grandiose list, as well as seeing those films I have yet to see (that any self-respecting Cinephile needs to see). All this will be done on my new LCD widescreen TV of course. But not to worry, I will still be doing reviews of the latest releases (a thing I have been sorely lackadaisical about as of late). Also The Top 10 Project keeps going, so join in on that if you so wish, and I'll see you later.

Rocky & Crash: Two Peas in a Pod !!

By the way, Crash becomes the first film since Rocky way back in 1976 to win Best Picture with only three total awards...and at least that took Best Director too.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Crash wins BP !!??


I suppose it's no real surprise to see that a gay love story would not be given Best Picture. But I do always claim I want there to be a surprise at The Oscars and this definately was one (although I came this close to predicting it last week before sticking with BBM) - even Jack Nicholson looked shocked (he mouthed wow after announcing it). In the end Crash, BBM, Geisha and Kong all win three awards apiece (I'm going to have to check the stat books on that one). Highlights of the night include the gay western montage, George Clooney's speech and - of course - Meryl & Lily's introduction to Robert Altman.

Oh yeah, my total predix score? 16 out of 24 [or 67%]. I beat all my competition (as you can read at The Oscar Showdown Page), although Albert H. Muth does invoke some "delusional" rule where I cannot be deemed victor without also picking BP (he got 15 right - including picking Crash) - and he claims victory. I guess we have to count all the hanging chads to have an official victor.

To-morrow night (I have to work an entire eight hour shift to-morrow, unlike my normal five and a half) I will be posting my Year-in-Advance Oscar Predix for 2006/2007. They will be over at The Cinematheque sometime to-morrow night.

Good Night, and Good ... well, you know...

Brokeback Wins Cinematheque Oscar Poll !!!

First off, as expected, Brokeback Mountain takes home our final Oscar Poll with a grand total of 10 votes (or 71%) - the largest margain of victory in any of the five polls. Second place goes to Good Night, and Good Luck. with 2 votes (or 14%). Third was a tie between Capote and Crash, each with a single vote (or 7%). Munich recieved no votes at all.

Secondly, my FINAL PREDIX have been posted over at The Cinematheque (and they are listed at the end of this posting). Also over at The Cinematheque is The Oscar Showdown - the annual battle between myself, my wife and our friend Bert. Right now I am still waiting on my opponents pix, but they will all be up before the show begins, so remember to check back later.

Picture: Brokeback Mountain
Director: Ang Lee, BBM
Actress: Reese Witherspoon, WtL
Actor: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Capote
Supp Actress: Rachel Weisz, Gardener
Supp Actor: George Clooney, GN&GL
O. Screenplay: Crash
A. Screenplay: Brokeback Mountain
Cinematog: Brokeback Mountain
Art Direction: Memoirs of a Geisha
Editing: Crash
Score: Memoirs of a Geisha
Song: Transamerica
Costumes: Memoirs of a Geisha
Make-up: Narnia
Sound: Walk the Line
Sound F/X: King Kong
Visual F/X: King Kong
Foreign: Tsotsi
Docum: March of the Penguins
Animated: Wallace & Gromit
Anim Short: One Man Band
Docum Short: God Sleeps in Rwanda
Live Action Short: Ausreisser

Final Oscar Predix !!!

My final predictions are up over at my site. For the most part these are pretty obvious choices, with only Editing, Song, Score, Sound and Foreign giving my some second thoughts. I wonder though if there will be any real surprises this year (unlike last year's bore-fest) ?? The one that comes right to mind is the possibility of Amy Adams pulling off Supporting Actress. I suppose we'll see to-morrow night (or actually later tonight). I'll be back with the results of the latest Oscar Poll on Sunday afternoon as well as my FINAL FINAL predictions (I still might change a couple) and the predictions of some fellow critics. Anyway, good night for now.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Heath beats out Philip for Best Actor at The Cinematheque Poll !!!

Forget Philip Seymour Hoffman, it's Heath Ledger who takes the Cinematheque Oscar Poll victory, with 10 votes (or 53%) to P.S. Hoffman's 8 votes (or 42%). Although it doesn't look like the Oscar will go that way, Ledger has this to fall back on (and I'm sure he will send a thank you note any day now). Coming in third was David Strathairn with just one vote (or 5%). Joaquin Phoenix and Terrence Howard both end without any votes (or for the math-impaired amongst you, 0%).

And now, lastly, we come to Part 5 of our Oscar Poll - Best Picture !! The poll is up now over at The Cinematheque, and will be posted until Sunday afternoon, whence the final results shall be posted. Also coming Sunday afternoon will be my final predictions for Oscar Night (as well as the predix from my wife, the poet Jeanette Trout, Cinematheque Correspondant Albert H. Muth and Harrisburg Patriot-News Film Critic Li Wang). Monday I'll play armchair quarterback and give my thoughts and analysis on The Oscars. Coming Saturday will be the announcement of the Winners of the Second Annual Cinematheque Awards. Will Ledger pull off a victory there as well (not that his Oscar competition, Mr. Hoffman is even nominated)? Come back Saturday and find out.