Circuit Round-Up (Week Ending 7/8)

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  • Another week has gone by at The Awards Circuit, and we draw closer and closer to that all-important awards season. Having been pleased with the recent string of quality summer films, my “Spidey” sense is tingling that 2012 is going to be a great year for film overall. Getting an exclusive sneak peek at some of the more anticipated films down the line, as well as having the opportunity to get the scoop on television’s hottest shows, is Terence Johnson, who’ll be attending the 2012 Comic-Con International in San Diego in a few short days. Check out his full schedule here, and also be sure to look at what 5 things Terence is most excited to see/cover at the world’s biggest pop culture playground.
  • We had several reviews this week, and one film in particular caused another great divide amongst our staff, though to be fair the film probably won’t be eliciting the same sort of in-depth debate that June’s Prometheus prompted. I alluded to it earlier, but yes…another superhero flick is upon us, and whether its franchise needed to be rebooted or not, the fact of the matter is that The Amazing Spider-Man is here, so please read Joey and Mike’s opposing takes on the web-slingers latest (or should we say earliest?) adventure. John H. Foote offered his take on Sarah Polley’s somewhat polarizing second feature film, Take This Waltz. Other than the beloved E.T., for which Mr. Foote praised to the heavens in his historical circuit review, our resident historian seemed to have his ** rating at the ready, branding Oliver Stone’s latest, Savages, an entertaining disaster. Will the “Stone” crush the “Spider” at the box office this weekend? Hah, this isn’t real life — of course not! Finally, Mr. Magidson wrapped up the reviews for the week with the Duplass Bros. latest film, The Do-Deca-Penthathlon and Fernando Meirelles’ incredibly disappointing 360°
  • Joey Magidson provided us with two hefty articles this week, both fascinating reads to be sure! The first was his annual Highlights and Lowlights of the Year…Thus Far article, where Joey still maintains Cabin in the Woods is the one to beat for his “Top 10 of 2012” list. Please be sure to check out the best and worst 2012 had to offer, and also provide your thoughts on the matter, because I know you all aren’t afraid to share your candid opinions! Secondly, Joey delivered us a piece that discussed the Don Corleone of Hollywood himself, Mr. Harvey Weinstein, who seems “More Powerful Than Ever Before.” Check out both articles, as they are certifiable must-reads.
  • What did Joey select for his weekly DVD-Picks-of-the-Week? It was none other than one of 2012’s early hidden gems of the year, The Hunter. The film stars Willem Dafoe, who has flown a bit under the radar lately but still delivers great work, and it’s not to be missed. I currently have it waiting in the wings on my Netflix queue, so please do yourself a favor and go check out this film! For his vintage selection in honor of Oliver Stone’s Savages, Joey chose his favorite “Stone”-er movie…Talk Radio. I’ve never heard of it until now, and while I’m no expert on Stone, this film certainly seems like as good an introduction as any to the man’s filmography.
  • As we inch closer to the greatest movie of all flippin’ time The Dark Knight Rises, we continued our 30 Days of Batman series with a bunch of insightful articles into the Batverse. First up was Robert Hamer’s detailed inspection of the Caped Crusader’s greatest adversary and, let’s face it, the biggest pain in Batman’s ass — The Joker. I was up next with a chronicling of Gotham’s shining “White Knight” turned villain, the highly complex Two-Face. I passed the baton to Anna Belickis, who then listed the best and worst portrayals of a female in a Batman film. If you don’t agree with Anna’s pick for WORST of the WORST, then you really are Clueless. Best and Worst of Batman continued with Mark Johnson’s look at the highs and lows of men behind the Batcamera, with Terence wrapping things up with his choices of best/worst actors who portrayed “The Dark Knight.” Somewhere out there, Val Kilmer is hiding in fear. If this still wasn’t enough for your spoiled eyes, check out Joey Magidson’s early Chriskwanzakkah present for you guys…a 13-minute sneak preview of The Dark Knight Rises itself!
  • What’s a week at The Awards Circuit without a few trailers? Click to your heart’s content: Quartet, Jack Reacher, and Lawless. Which film sounds the most promising to you based on what was seen in the trailer?
  • Did you guys check out Mark Johnson’s two Circuit 3’s this week? After Mark paid birthday tribute to Sylvester Stallone, he provided a forum for everyone to announce their “Top 3” most anticipated films of 2012 that have yet to be released. No surprise, The Dark Knight Rises and Django Unchained were on many of the lists, but what was shocking was how our excitement for Les Miserables has transcended to you, the readers. Can Tom Hooper make us recant  our negative feelings towards his The King’s Speech victory over David Fincher’s infinitely superior direction (much less film) for The Social Network with this musical retelling of Victor Hugo’s famous novel? Time will tell, but we can all “Dream a Dream,” can’t we?
  • John H. Foote took us back to the Golden Age of Hollywood with his Best of the Decade series, featuring the 1930s. Be sure to view John’s piece, and feel free to share your own top picks for the Great Depression decade that ironically didn’t deprive audiences of incredible films to see.
  • Most importantly, we hope you all had an amazing 4th of July Weekend. Even if you ended up doing nothing but sitting on the couch all day to watch a movie or two, we hope you checked out our Top 10 Films About Independence and used it to inspire some of your film choices in honor of Independence Day. Thank you once again for your loyal readership, and please remember to submit your reader questions for today’s edition of “Power Hour.” Here’s to another excellent movie-filled week!