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Entries in Best Ensemble (65)

Wednesday
Dec 13 2017

Screen Actors Guild Nominations 2017

By Nathaniel R

Another day,another set of honors to parse.Refresh your screen for updates.The nominations were announced by Olivia Munn and Niecy Nash this morning.Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouriand Big Little Lies led the honors with 4 nominations each.Generally speaking the SAG lineups indicate you have a great shot at also becoming an Oscar nominee,if not a locked shot,so the nominees this morning have a lot to be excited about.SAGs nominations for TV are less relevant in terms of awards prospects since they don't divvy up the categories in quite the same way as the Emmys,nor is their timetable the same.

The nominees are...

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Sunday
Dec 10 2017

You're Tearing Me Apart,Franco!: "The Disaster Artist"

By Spencer Coile

Tommy Wiseau'sThe Roomis a train-wreck.This is not a unique statement to make.Ask anyone who has seen it,and you'll surely be met with a healthy mix of laughter and endless quoting from 2003's "so bad it's good"disasterpiece.For years,fans have flocked to midnight showings at local theaters or gathered with friends around their TV to enjoy the messy writing,acting,and directing -- just three of the many hats Wiseau wore throughout filming.

What many fail to address,however,is thatThe Roomwas not always comedy;it began as a labor of love -- a melodrama with strong connections to Wiseau's personal (but very private) life.Adapted from the memoir byThe Roomco-star Greg Sestero and journalist Tom Bissell,James Franco dramatizes Wiseau's journey from obscurity to cult stardom inThe Disaster Artist.But is his portrayal of Tommy Wiseau given the same loving treatment as Wiseau intended forThe Room...?

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Saturday
Dec 09 2017

SAG Predictions: Outstanding Ensemble

by Nathaniel R

The SAG nominating committe has to turn in their ballots tomorrow (Sunday,December 10th) and we're naturally very curious as to how their votes turned out.We'll find out this coming Wednesday.The bulk of the nominees are usually the obvious set who are carrying a ton of buzz.But that's just the bulk.SAG has been known to throw at least one total wildcard into the mix (remember Naomi Watts forSt Vincent,2014,or Sarah Silverman inI Smile Back,2015,orHustle & Flowfor ensemble in 2005?).

Let's take a look at the truly competitive Outstanding Ensemble category...

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Wednesday
Nov 15 2017

Review: Murder on the Orient Express (2017)

by Eric Blume

The good news is the bad news:  director Kenneth Branagh's new adaptation of Agatha Christie'sMurder on the Orient Expressis exactly what you think it will be.  It's a stylish,corny,enjoyable two hours filled with movie stars and that absurd moustache.  It delivers on romantic glamor and old-school moviemaking,but there's not a surprise to be had.

Out of the gate,Branagh plunges us into a prologue that's both boring and obvious.  He means to establish Hercule Poirot's philosophy and fastidious nature,which sadly serves only as clunky groundwork which you know will circle back by the finale (which it does).  He also tries to bring some levity to the piece with a few lame jokes.  At first Branagh seems to be overplaying his hand...

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Thursday
Nov 09 2017

Blueprints: "Evil Under the Sun"

In anticipation of the release ofMurder on the Orient Expressthis weekend,Jorge Molina takes a look at a lesser known Agatha Christie adaptation to see how a mystery can introduce its suspects before it even begins.

There are few things that give me more comfort in life than murder mysteries.Clues woven cleverly through a narrative,the slow reveal of hidden motivations,the buildup to a clean and logical resolution.Watching one person inevitably emerge a criminal from a large group of eccentric and enigmatic characters.

Agatha Christie is still the undeniable queen of the genre.In her novels she perfected the character archetypes for these stories: the charismatic millionaire,the begrudging femme fatale,the quiet foreign girl,the ambitious older lad...to name but a few.

And when her work started to inevitably get cinematic adaptations,with them came a pool of dramatic flair for actors to dive into...

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Tuesday
Oct 24 2017

"Wonderstruck"and "Mudbound"

Lynn Lee continuing our Middleburg Film Festival adventure

Dee Rees and Mudbound cast earlier this year.© Daniel Bergeron

It's always a little weird to attend a talk with a directorbeforeseeing the film they're being interviewed about.  That's what happened withMudbound,which concluded a day that began with a very engaging conversation between director Dee Rees and Washington Post film critic Ann Hornaday and festival founder Sheila Johnson's presentation of the 2017 "Visionary"award to Rees.  Rees was charming,articulate,and impressively self-possessed,and had many interesting comments on the directorial choices she made inMudbound,which I wasn't sure whether I should keep in mind or set aside while watching the film that night.Rees made clear that she resists being pigeonholed as a director of color,female director,or female director of color,an aversion reflected in her somewhat bland mantra "let excellence be the standard."  At the same time,she agreed that the current system is structurally biasedagainstprioritizing excellence and needs to be opened up...

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