Circuit Round-Up (Week Ending 9/9)

  • This week at The Awards Circuit was much ado about EVERYTHING. Before I begin recapping the monumental event that is the Toronto Film Festival — where our very own John H. Foote is currently at, sharing with us daily reviews and diary segments about the most promising films that are coming out of TIFF, right on course for Oscar season — I would like to turn our attention to the latest episode of Power Hour. In this most recent episode, the staff ponder how much weight should be given to Argo’s Oscar chances now that the raves from Venice are in. Is it a “Best Picture” contender, and will The Academy finally recognize Ben Affleck’s directorial efforts after ignoring him for both The Town and Gone Baby Gone? Personally, I never found either of those films “Best Picture” worthy — truth be told, I detested Gone Baby Gone for its convoluted story and melodramatic antics — but I have a very good feeling about Argo. Take a listen to the podcast and see what some of the staff have to say about Argo and its potential interaction with the Golden Man. We also reveal our personal favorite performances from the last decade.
  • Speaking of the last decade, ACCA: Best of the Decade is finally open for voting! We’ve gathered your ACCA winners from 2000-2009 and put them up for a vote to find out which film is truly the best of the best in select categories. Think of this like an All-Star edition of your favorite reality show, but this time it’s movies YOU select as your ultimate favorite! Will Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King sweep this awards program like it did at the 74th Academy Awards ceremony? Are controversially snubbed films like Brokeback Mountain and The Dark Knight going to clinch victory? Perhaps everyone will go the cult favorite route and choose Requiem for a Dream. Whatever your choice is, make it and make it fast! We look forward to hearing what you all have decided as being truly THE BEST OF THE BEST between the years 2000-2009, so have at it!
  • Several reviews hit the site this week, including the sexy yet thinly-plotted For a Good Time, Call… the horror flick V/H/S, the meaner Bridesmaids: Bachelorette, Hello I Must Be Going (which our own Joey Magidson hosted a Q & A of after Friday’s screening at New York’s Angelika Film Center), and the poorly written The Words. Trailers for the week included the heavily anticipated Cloud Atlas (which has so far been received with as much division as we expected following its TIFF debut), Emile Hirsh/Penelope Cruz’s hot and heavy Twice Born, and Bette Midler’s return to…holiday movies (?!?!) with Parental Guidance.
  • Another week of new DVD/Blu-Ray releases means another week where Joey Magidson had to decide who was on top, and…who wasn’t on top. DUM DUM DUM!!! For his DVD Pick-of-the-Week, Joey chose The Five Year Engagement, another underrated gem from Jason Segel that virtually no one has seen. Between The Five Year Engagement and Jeff, Who Lives At Home’s dismal box office, you’d think no one had even heard of Segel except as “that dude in The Muppets movie.” We all know that isn’t the case, but those box office numbers sure say otherwise. Hopefully, you’ll now get a chance to seek out this flick that flew in and out of theaters quicker than Sonic the Hedgehog. For his vintage selection, Joey went with The Exploding Girl (no,  it’s not a spinoff featuring Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory‘s Violet Beauregarde). In honor of the upcoming film, For Ellen, Joey thought you might want to check out this Zoe Kazan-starring film that’s sure to wow and surprise a great deal of you. I’ll have to see it for myself to understand why Joey’s been championing it for years!
  • What did Mark Johnson bring to us this week besides the announcement of his presidential campaign? On top of another spin around the globe with Around the Circuit, Mark also unveiled a special edition of Circuit 3 in light of the upcoming football season: Circuit 3: Sports EditionName your favorite sports film…like, you know…EVER! It’s fun to see the range of choices, and it looks like a great many chose ones that somehow inspired them as children, which is always pretty fantastic to see. Mark also challenged some of our assumptions concerning the Best Animated Feature race. He makes a case for Rise of the Guardians, citing its recent Hollywood Animation Award as a huge indicator of its Oscar potential. Personally, I’m shell-shocked that the magnificent The Secret World of Arrietty is no longer on the table as a contender (bloody technicalities!). Here’s to hoping I see something better than the good-not-great animated features I’ve watched thus far (Brave and Pirates!Band of Misfits).
  • Which iconic Hollywood figures are the coveted recipients of this year’s Honorary Oscar Award? Click here to find out!
  • John H. Foote gave us another incredibly difficult task this week: coming up with your top ten 80s films! Yes, in his Best of the Decade: 1980s article, John reveals his own list while challenging us to all to come up with our own honest choices. Am I the only one who hears Simple Mind’s classic song, “Don’t You Forget About Me” (The Breakfast Club) when traveling down 80s cinema memory lane?