Around the Circuit: September 8th – 14th


It’s time to visit the week that was via our Around the Circuit piece, where we look back at articles that we feel are worth your time covering the Oscar race, new releases, or really just anything film related.

Link(s) of the week:

Dave Karger of Entertainment Weekly attended the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and over the weekend delivered a rundown of the films he had seen and what their chances were of being recognized during the awards season. He calls Ben Affleck’s Argo the “most awards-friendly film of the festival,” and from what we heard from Telluride last week, this only backs up the high expectations for Affleck’s third film.  He followed his weekend post with another one on Monday, proclaiming David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook to be right there with Argo as the biggest players in the race thus far. He breaks down the awards race for the rest of the films he was privy to at TIFF as well.

Along with Karger’s praise for Harvey Weinstein’s latest Oscar gem came hefty acclamations from Deadline’s Pete Hammond, calling Silver Linings Playbook a “strikingly original and human film.” While Steve Pond at The Wrap stated it is “a perfectly calibrated comedy that is also deeply moving.”

Despite its seemingly mixed reviews around the web, Hammond feels that Joe Wright’s adaptation of Anna Karenina will be a major awards player across the board, including being an “instant contender” for Picture, Director, Screenplay, Actress (Keira Knightley), Cinematography, Production Design, Costumes, Score, and possibly even Supporting Actor (Jude Law) (Hammond also dishes on the awards hopes of The Master and Argo, after having screened all of the forementioned films at TIFF). Scott Feinberg at The Hollywood Reporter agrees with Hammond about Anna Karenina’s chances at receiving noms in the craft/tech fields, but feels it will be more of a longshot in the major categories.

After its debut screening at TIFF, it appears that Cloud Atlas could be the most divisive film of the year. Brad Brevet at Rope of Silicon can’t denyhow ambitious the new Wachowski siblings film is, and while he felt the film ran overly long, still believes it was “energetic, entertaining and provocative.” Solvej Schou of Entertainment Weekly reports a standing ovation for the cast and film, and calls Cloud Atlasepic, and referred to Hanks performance as Oscar-worthy. First Showing’s Alex Billington seemed the most excited and moved by the film, bestowing enormous praise on the film by calling it a “true cinematic revelation.” And while he admits that he might not yet understand every scene, its emotional impact on him was deep and profound. Kevin Jagernauth at The Playlist, however, goes the opposite route, calling Cloud Atlas unimaginative, sagacious, dull, and repetitive, though he agrees that technically the film is an accomplishment.

Sasha Stone at Awards Daily breaks down the Lead Actress race, focusing on newly cited front runner Jennifer Lawrence (Silver Linings Playbook). After the praise Lawrence received at TIFF, it is becoming harder and harder not to move Lawrence into the winner spot on my predictions (especially when considering the absence of a second legitimate front runner), so I shall.

Scott Feinberg at The Hollywood Reporter gives us his latest assessment on the awards race following the early September festivals, and it sounds like he currently sits in the Argo camp.

What do you think?

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Written by Mark Johnson

Lover of all things film and Oscar. Fantasy sports’ equivalent of George Steinbrenner. Your very own Han Solo, making friends all over the movie-loving galaxy in spite of himself. When he’s not ranking just about everything or dominating boardgames, Mark is breaking down the Oscar race 24/7 with Rain Man-like stats and knowledge. In his downtime, you can find him commiserating with other Northeast Ohio sports fans because a hero isn’t complete without a little heartbreak. If Game of Thrones, Lost, Breaking Bad, Mad Men, and Survivor are your style, then congratulations, you have something in common with this inglourious basterd.


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