Random Thread for December 2015

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The awards season officially kicked off with the ever-idiosynchratic National Board of Review’s Awards (which are older than the Oscars, believe it or not):

Best Film:  Mad Max: Fury Road
Best Director:  Ridley Scott – The Martian
Best Actor:  Matt Damon – The Martian
Best Actress: Brie Larson – Room
Best Supporting Actor:  Sylvester Stallone – Creed
Best Supporting Actress:  Jennifer Jason Leigh – The Hateful Eight
Best Original Screenplay:  Quentin Tarantino – The Hateful Eight
Best Adapted Screenplay:  Drew Goddard – The Martian
Best Animated Feature:  Inside Out
Breakthrough Performance:  Abraham Attah – Beasts of No Nation & Jacob Tremblay – Room
Best Directorial Debut:  Jonas Carpignano – Mediterranea
Best Foreign Language Film:  Son of Saul
Best Documentary:  Amy
William K. Everson Film History Award:  Cecilia De Mille Presley
Best Ensemble:  The Big Short
Spotlight Award:  Sicario, for Outstanding Collaborative Vision
NBR Freedom of Expression Award:  Beasts of No Nation & Mustang

Top Films
Bridge of Spies
Creed
The Hateful Eight
Inside Out
Spotlight
The Martian
Room
Sicario
Straight Outta Compton

Top 5 Foreign Language Films
Goodnight Mommy
Mediterranea
Phoenix
The Second Mother
The Tribe

Top 5 Documentaries
Best of Enemies
The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution
The Diplomat
Listen to Me Marlon
The Look of Silence

Top 10 Independent Films
’71
45 Years
Cop Car
Ex Machina
Grandma
It Follows
James White
Mississippi Grind
Welcome to Me
While We’re Young

For Mad Max fans who are all excited about Oscar prospects, remember that last year the NBR went with A Most Violent Year, which got exactly zero Oscar nominations. They probably even haven’t seen all movies–I doubt they’ve seen Star Wars.

About Jackrabbit Slim

Location: Vegas, Baby! I’m much older than the other whippersnappers here, a baby boomer. I tend to be more snobbish about film, disdaining a lot of the multiplex fare for “cinema.” My favorite films: Woody Allen’s oeuvre (up until about 1990), The Godfather, The Graduate, A Hard Day’s Night, Pulp Fiction. Politics: Well, George McGovern was my political hero. I’m also a prickly atheist. Occupation: Poised to be an English teacher in Las Vegas. For many years I was an editor at Penthouse Magazine. My role on this blog seems to be writing lots of reviews and being the resident Oscar maven.

26 responses »

  1. How did The Hateful Eight win? I thought no one had seen it even at a preview level.

    Stallone seems to be getting a lot of momentum for the Best Supporting Actor Oscar. If he did it would surely create several records; I’m sure no actor has won an Oscar ever playing a character for the 7th time in a film.

  2. Don’t think I’ve mentioned this, but Sicario is probably my favorite film so far this year, alongside Mad Max.

  3. New York Film Critics:

    Best Picture: Carol
    Best Actor: Michael Keaton, Spotlight
    Best Actress: Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn
    Best Director: Todd Haynes, Carol
    Best Screenplay: Carol
    Best Supporting Actor: Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies
    Best Supporting Actress: Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria
    Best Animated Film: Inside Out
    Best Cinematography: Edward Lachman, Carol
    Best First Film: Son of Saul
    Best Foreign Film: Timbuktu
    Best Nonfiction Film: In Jackson Heights
    Special Award: Posthumous award honoring the legacy of William Becker and Janus Films
    Special Award: Ennio Morricone, composer

  4. LA Film Critics:

    Best Film: “Spotlight”
    Runner-up: “Mad Max: Fury Road”
    Best Director: George Miller, “Mad Max: Fury Road”
    Runner-up: Todd Haynes, “Carol”
    Best Actor: Michael Fassbender, “Steve Jobs“
    Runner-up: Geza Rohrig, “Son of Saul”
    Best Actress: Charlotte Rampling, “45 Years”
    Runner-up: Saoirse Ronan, “Brooklyn”
    Best Supporting Actor: Michael Shannon, “99 Homes”
    Runner-up: Mark Rylance, “Bridge of Spies”
    Best Supporting Actress: Alicia Vikander, “Ex Machina”
    Runner-up: Kristen Stewart, “Clouds of Sils Maria”
    Best Documentary: “Amy”
    Runner-up: “The Look of Silence”
    Best Animated Film: “Anomalisa”
    Runner-up: “Inside Out”
    Best Foreign Language Film: “Son of Saul”
    Runner-up: “The Tribe”
    Best Screenplay: Josh Singer and Tom McCarthy, “Spotlight”
    Runner-up: Charlie Kaufman, “Anomalisa”
    Best Cinematography: John Seale, “Mad Max: Fury Road”
    Runner-up: Edward Lachman, “Carol”
    Best Editing: Hank Corwin, “The Big Short”
    Runner-up: Margaret Sixel, “Mad Max: Fury Road”
    Best Musical Score: Carter Burwell, “Anomalisa” and “Carol”
    Runner-up: Ennio Morricone, “The Hateful Eight”
    Best Production Design: Colin Gibson, “Mad Max: Fury Road”
    Runner-up: Judy Becker, “Carol”
    New Generation Award: Ryan Coogler, “Creed”

  5. And their next film will be FINDING DORY, which seems certain to be a huge success and affirmation of the Pixar brand, so it’s not like TGD’s failure is a sign of long-term weakness.

    I will say this for TGD – it’s a better movie than it looked from the trailers. I think that’s all this was about – it just looked lame. And word-of-mouth just wasn’t strong enough to overcome that.

  6. Exactly. If they hadn’t had Inside Out this year, it might be a different story – but having a huge original film helps this to be little more than a bump in the road.

  7. Star Wars has an incredibly high 97% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Because of the dominance of the film franchise in pop culture (insufferable if you’re not interested in it) I do wonder whether some critics are giving it a pass just to conform and go with the flow, but it can’t be denied it’s an impressive figure.

  8. Is anyone going opening weekend? Ordered a ticket for Sunday at 4, IMAX 3D. I don’t like 3D, but movie theaters (at least Sony Loews) no longer take phone calls, so I wanted to make sure it would be in the biggest theater. I can’t believe they don’t even take phone calls. But theaters now have such skeleton crews, they don’t want them answering the phones.

  9. I’ll probably see it next week, but it might be closer to New Years. I’m expecting to have a good time with it theatrically before finding it completely underwhelming on video (like all of JJ’s films).

  10. If I recall though – that includes tickets for next week and the week after, etc. It’s anyone’s guess how many are for this weekend.

  11. Foreign Language Oscar shortlist:

    Nine features will advance to the next round of voting in the Foreign Language Film category for the 88th Academy Awards®. Eighty films had originally been considered in the category.

    The films, listed in alphabetical order by country, are:

    Belgium, “The Brand New Testament,” Jaco Van Dormael, director;

    Colombia, “Embrace of the Serpent,” Ciro Guerra, director;

    Denmark, “A War,” Tobias Lindholm, director;

    Finland, “The Fencer,” Klaus Härö, director;

    France, “Mustang,” Deniz Gamze Ergüven, director;

    Germany, “Labyrinth of Lies,” Giulio Ricciarelli, director;

    Hungary, “Son of Saul,” László Nemes, director;

    Ireland, “Viva,” Paddy Breathnach, director;

    Jordan, “Theeb,” Naji Abu Nowar, director.

    Labyrinth of Lies had a release here but I didn’t see it. Anyone (Rob, Nic) seen any of the others? I imagine Son of Saul is the favorite.

  12. Funny, after seeing Bad Santa against last night I see the news that Bad Santa 2 is getting a November release next year. Everyone is back (even the kid) except for Lauren Graham.

  13. If you’ve seen an animated film in the last 20 years, you’ve already seen The Good Dinosaur. It’s almost shockingly blatant in lifting material.

    It would be a B-/C+ from any other studio, but because it’s Pixar: C-. I’d only put Cars, A Bug’s Life and possibly Cars 2 below it.

    It’s not necessarily unenjoyable, it’s just unoriginal.

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