And you thought the awards season was over? The MTV Movie Awards have announced their nominations and FINALLY existing (somewhat) in a post-Twilight world, the same group that made edgy choices back in the 90s like awarding Menace II Society (1993) and Se7en (1995) their top award can start looking at some of the cool, ecletic group of pictures and give them their proper citations.
2012 went in the blink of an eye. By July of last year, I was fearful of how the year would turn out for film. At that point my top two films, Beasts of the Southern Wild and Moonrise Kingdom were very good but nothing that I wanted to be in the top-tier of my annual top ten list since neither received a top-notch review from myself. September rolled around and film after film was blowing audiences, critics, and prognosticators away. There’s always a narrative a critic and blogger tries to write for the year. Is it the year of action films? Is it the year of big studios? While large studios definitely stepped up their games, it was documentaries that pushed the boundaries of storytelling and bringing enigmatic issues to the surface. I can only hope a worthy documentary manages to get their due in the future and hit the cultural zeitgeist that will “allow” Oscar to recognize.
As I unveil my personal ballot over the next few days, looking over the citations as a whole make me very proud of what filmmakers, performers, and studios are choosing to do with their narrative techniques. Of course, our beloved readership will have a different top ten, criticize choices, and scream anarchy for glowing omissions, but that’s what the Awards Circuit is about. Make your choices known not only in the comment section but also in the Awards Circuit Community Awards which are currently underway.
They are who we thought they were. Coach Green’s famous rant about the Chicago Bears football team can be applied to the Writers Guild Award nominees, as there were just about zero surprises. With scripts from films like Django Unchained, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Les Mis, and Amour being ruled ineligible, it cut the group of deserving nominees down considerably. So while The Perks of Being a Wallflower and Looper seem like surprise nominees, they were, in fact, not. Have a look at the full list of noms after the jump.
The precursor award season is about to kick off on Monday with the New York Film Critics naming their best of the year. This is when all the speculation, hope, and despair is laid to rest for many contenders and films but as performances like Tommy Lee Jones in In the Valley of Elah or films like The Blind Side and Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close will tell you, it’s not over until the President and guest read your name off the teleprompter.
This month brings the following announcement schedule:
Monday, 12/3 – New York Film Critics
Wednesday, 12/5 – National Board of Review
Friday, 12/7 – Los Angeles Film Critics
Sunday, 12/9 – New York Film Critics Online & Boston Film Critics
Tuesday, 12/11 – Broadcast Film Critics Association Announces Nominees!!!
It’s always great to get to interact with filmmakers and pick their minds about their craft. But rare is it that you have the chance to talk to someone who wrote and directed the screenplay from their own best-selling novel. A day after being blown away by The Perks of Being a Wallflower (my favorite film of the year so far), I had the opportunity to attend a press junket with writer/director Stephen Chboksy to pick his brain about his wonderful novel and film. We also had the added experience of having a group of high school journalists from St. Agnes School here in Houston, which brought an interesting youth perspective to the proceedings. Stephen had some great stories to tell about the cast, why he chose to shoot the film the way he did, and other great insights about how the film can affect all ages. Check out audio of the junket after the jump!
A story of the pain and pleasure of the high school experience, there are a lot of things to like about the teen drama ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower’. There are also a few issues as well, namely a tonal inconsistency and some odd choices on the part of writer/director (and author of the novel of the same name that was adapted here) Stephen Chbosky, but besides that this is mostly a very strong film. Featuring solid performances from Logan Lerman and Emma Watson alongside a scene stealing supporting turn from Ezra Miller, the movie succeeds due to its acting, emotional honestly, and nostalgia that it’s likely to bring out in both fans of the young adult novel and those who think back to their teenage years spent in the formative halls of a high school. Despite its flaws, I anticipate this being a popular film, if not in theaters than on DVD later this year/next year. I’m not sure that any Oscar love is headed the movie’s way, but it’s better than I was expecting and is the sort of flick that rarely gets made by a studio these days, so that’s certainly something to applaud. I’d be happy if Miller gets some precursor love, but I won’t hold my breath.
As we barrel towards the fall movie season, more information is coming out regarding highly anticipated titles. Knowing that Summit Entertainment has released tons of new stills for two of its biggest films, The Perks of Being A Wallflower and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn-Part 2. Whether by shear coincidence or manufactured circumstances, these photos are arriving during a strange period of high public discussion about the stars of the movie, with Kristen Stewart’s dalliance with a director or Ezra Miller’s coming out. In either circumstance, these pics are a welcome look at movies that will surely be discussed a lot in the following months. Take a gander at the photos after the jump!
The second half of the year is upon us. The race is about to heat up with big Oscar hopefuls coming down the pike. Our John Foote will be in attendance at the Toronto International Film Festival and many films will be unveiling themselves to critics alike. There is a very unclear yet still feasible shape to the race looking from ten thousand feet.
There are internet jitters building for Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master starring Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman. With the trailers released and now the film being pushed up to September, it looks as though we may be in store for a master class in filmmaking. Phoenix also looks to be a lead contender for his first Oscar after delivering in his previous nominated works, Gladiator (2000) and Walk the Line (2005). Phoenix does have tough competition ahead of him including what looks to be a critical darling-type performance coming from John Hawkes in Ben Lewin’s The Sessions. Early word is very positive for the film and the turns by Hawkes along with co-stars Helen Hunt and William H. Macy. Since Hawkes’ initial nomination two years ago for Winter’s Bone, he hasn’t shown any signs of letting up. He was arguably left off last year in Sean Durkin’s Martha Marcy May Marlene and will be seen later this year in Julia Dyer’s The Playroom and Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln. There seems to be a tremendous following and support for him in his current state. Speaking of Spielberg, we’re still awaiting some type of marketing material for his upcoming Lincoln biopic. No poster or trailer has been released with very few stills leaked online. One starts to think if it will even be ready in time.