Oscar History

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Entries in Cameron Crowe (6)

Sep 06 2017

Soundtracking: "Almost Famous"

Chris Feil's weekly series looks back at Cameron Crowe's rock opus...

Of everything thatAlmost Famousgets right about our relationship with music,its richest insights come from how it explores the importance of music in adolescence.Cameron Crowe is telling his own story of his teenage music journalism days in the film,but that's not solely why the film feels so personal.It's personal because it's about that time in our life when music is never more personal.

When Crowe stand-in William Miller is gifted a treasure chest of vinyl from his sister Anita she isn't just handing over the greats,she's tasking him to find himself.At that age our musical taste is a vessel to both define ourselves and connect to others,to develop some kind of community or shared experience.It's in the background of every heartbreak and happy memory,even if it just played in our heads.Through music,Crowe makes the intensely personal into something universal.Just like a song.

Click to read more ...亚博足彩app

Jun 03 2015

Review: Aloha's Good Intentions Can't Rescue It

Michael C hereto try to make sense of what I just watched.Cameron Crowe'sAlohais one of the most bewildering cinematic experiences in recent memory.

Gone is the filmmaker behindAlmost FamousandJerry Maguirethat could gracefully execute romantic gestures grand enough to capsize lesser movies.Gone even is the maker of follies likeElizabethtownwho missed the mark by a mile but at least left a coherent mess in his wake.In his place is a guy that can barely scrape together a moment of believable human interaction inAloha's105 minute running time.Crowe is so besotted with his notions of spiritual uplift against a mystical Hawaiian backdrop,so dizzy with big statements about life and love and redemption,that he appears to have lost his bearings completely.Aloha'soutpouring of emotion is fed into the malfunctioning machinery of the screenplay and spat out the other end as gobbledygook.

Bradley Cooper plays Brian Gilcrest,a cynic with a heart of gold in the Jerry Maguire mold.Gilcrest is a soldier coming off a series of vague professional disasters given the cushy task of obtaining a blessing from some native Hawaiians so the army can relocate an ancient burial ground (I think).Returning to Hawaii means seeing the girlfriend he ran out on eighteen years ago (Rachel McAdams) and her new family.Gilcrest is escorted on this mission by spunky young fighter pilot played by Emma Stone.The pairing generates all the romantic sparks of a guy babysitting his rambunctious younger cousin on a weekend road trip.

Click to read more ...亚博足彩app

May 31 2015

Box Office Fault Lines

I didn't see the latest disaster epic this weekend - but maybe you did?How many people did The Rock save with his giant arms and helicopters and diving (the three techniques he used from the trailer - I'm just guessing).San Andreasthe movie may have killed off Californians but it was spectacle enough to attract the nation at large with a $50+ million opening weekend which makes this his biggest opening weekend outside of theMummyandFast & Furiousfranchises.

May 29-31 Weekend
01San AndreasNEW$53.2
02Pitch Perfect 2$14.8 (cum.$147.5)Review
03Tomorrowland$13.8 (cum.$63.1)Review
04Mad Max Fury Road$13.6 (cum.$115.9)Review&Podcast
05Age of Ultron$10.9 (cum.$427)Review&Marathon&Podcast
07Poltergeist$7.8 (cum.$38.2)
08Far From The Madding Crowd$1.4 (cum.$8.3)Review
09Hot Pursuit$1.3 (cum.$32.3)Review
10Home$1.1 (cum.$170.4)

MeanwhileAloha,Cameron Crowe's latest had a dismal $10 million opening (That's a dismal opening when you've got three mostly bankable A list stars) and terrible reviews - many critics calling it his worst yet.I was curious to see it despite the reviews until I heard that Emma Stone was playing a character that was meant to be half Asian American and then I was like...'you know what Hollywood?Just not doing this anymore.ENOUGH.'

In better newsMad MaxandFar From The Madding Crowd(the two we're rooting for at the moment from genre quality and "make more movies like this"concerns) held fairly well in their third and fifth weekends respectively.Fury Road's exorbitant price tag isn't going to make it one of the most profitable films of the year but at least it will eventually make its money back!I had the laziest weekend ever as you probably sensed from the unusually quiet blogging...but I'm hopingyoufound excitement.What did you see?

NYC Readers Take Note:
I will be appearing in a show atUCB in the East Village called "So Into It"on Tuesday night (June 2nd) this week. It's a comic variety show that changes themes each month and this month the topic is 'awards shows'.I'm not totally sure what to expect but I will be interviewed on stage at some point during the show.Please note: I am not the one bringing the comedy -- not a comedian.I'm just being interviewed but I'd appreciate support from anyone reading who is So Into The Film Experience (and also non-judgmental) as I'm terrified of being on stage.亚博主页

May 08 2014


Salon"Dear serial tweet-favoriter: you are a coward"lol.a must read for anyone with a Twitter account
The UncoolCameron Crowe's agonizing search for a title forAlmost Famous(2000)...in notepad form
Film School Rejectstwo members of the staff watched "the 50 best movies of all time"and here are their takeaways from that two year process
Antagony & Ecstasyon King Vidor'sThe Crowd(1928) at the great end of silent filmmaking
Kenneth in the (212)shares a pretty great X-Men related Graham Norton wherein Fassy & McAvoy see gay fan art of themselves

MNPPtries to rekindle his love for George Clooney with his three favorite Clooneys.Good choices
Varietyasks where the kids movies are this summer in the absence of Pixar
The Wire"Zac Efron hits bottom by accepting life advice from Tom Cruise"haha.I'm linking that for the title alone
i09see what your favorite webcomics would look like animated
Cinesnarkterrific examination of why Captain America films are what Superman films have failed to be

news bits
Empirethe ever employed Liam Neeson joinsA Monster Calls...the new feature from the director ofThe Impossible.I can't wait until it's retitled something dull like "Dark River"
Cinema BlendThe Flintstonesgetting a new animated feature because no franchise is allowed to ever die
In ContentionThe Disappearance of Eleanor Rigbywill be released in three different versions.It's a neat experiment but it fills me with horror.Goodbye final cut and "definitive"versions.That's a thing of the past (Malick,Lucas,and Scott have been trying to force that on us for years with their "oh,i'm sorry did i say i was finished i wasn't finished"tinkering so I'm sure they're thrilled.)
GuardianAndrea Arnold to direct first US film,a road trip calledAmerican Honey.I hope she casts professional actors this time.

Aug 07 2012

Burning Questions: Who Is Your Cinematic Avatar?

Hey everybody.Michael C.here. Recently I told my girlfriend she reminds me of Holly Hunter's character inBroadcast News.The comparison was meant as a compliment.To my mind Jane Craig embodies the same qualities of intelligence and moxie that I admire in her.Hopefully,when we she finally watches the movie she will keep that in my mind during the scenes where Hunter's self-described "basket case"is sobbing for no reason and generally making a shambles of her personal life.

In any case it got me to thinking.It doesn't happen often,but every once in a while you meet a film character that makes you think,my God,the filmmakers must have had me in mind when they made this movie. Now in any quality film we can relate to characters with which we have nothing in common,at least on the surface.I couldn't be further away from the charcter of Clarice Starling,for example,but I relate to her every step of the way.But beyond that level,sometimes we meet fictional creations that reflect ourselves back at us in ways that reverberate and linger.

Characters like this could remind us of ourselves physically or in their jobs or in personality tics we frequently find ourselves guilty of. These may even be characters we catch ourselves consciously – or unconsciously – trying to emulate.Like the way a generation of young romantics set out to mimic the laid back,jaded cool of Marcello Mastroianni inLa Dolce Vita,or how many young women in the late 70's attempted to reproduce Annie Hall's devastating mix of flighty neurosis and sexiness.

So I guess what I'm asking this week is...

Who is that character for you?Who is your big screen avatar?I can answer for myself easily...

Click to read more ...亚博足彩app

Sep 14 2011

Yes,No,Maybe So: "We Bought A Zoo"

Perhaps it's my childhood calling but I've been looking forward toWe Bought A Zooall year on account of me likey the wild animals.I even initially thought it might be in the Oscar race on account of inspirational film and comeback possibilities for its director.But that was then...We finally havea trailerfor Cameron Crowe's first movie since everybody decided to shun him (Elizabethtown) just a few short years after everyone decided that they worshipped him (Almost Famous).In the new film Matt Damon plays a widower (I think?It's unclear) struggling to raise his kids from central casting: let's call them Quippy Cute Moppet and Mopey Teenager In Need Of Fathering.The family is sad and needs a fresh start.They buy...wait for it...A ZOO!

Now,let's break it down with our patentedYes,No,Maybe So system.Does the trailer make us eager,eager to avoid or leave us somewhere inbetween?


  • Matt Damon is aging gracefully,still handsome and still a belieavable everyman type.He'll undoubtedly be sympathetic as a widower with needy kids.
  • Wild Animals!Wild animals that don't dream of hanging out at TGIF with Kevin James.If you couldn't picture yourself jumping up and down with glee (ages 8 and under) when you heard that your new house is a zoo just like Quippy Cute Moppet you have grown way too cynical.
  • Damon + Thomas Haden Church +  Elle Fanning +  Scarlett Johansson = solid starry blonde cast.
  • Wait...is Scarlett Johansson playing a real person this time?Likenotan idealized muse but an ordinary woman?


  • Ugh.Turns out that Quippy Cute Moppet is a signatory to Hollywood's Mandatory Dissing of Bald Men Act.Haters gon' hate.
  • Ugh.Turns out that it's yet another movie that buys into America's dullard hatred of Elitist Education and Actual Job Training in favor of Blind Worship of Chutzpah.Just Do It!"You don't need any special knowledge to run a zoo,just a lot of heart"...uhhhhh,don't you needsomespecialized knowledge of how to care for LIVING WILD ANIMALS ?!I'm guessing: yes.Heart won't help you if the animals have a toothache or a pregnancy!
  • The music chosen for the trailer (bonus point to the first person who names it in the comments) is shorthand for Inspirational Underscore.
  • So too is the golden hue and pensive sunlight shorthand for Inspirational Film.
  • So too are the constant inspirational pep talks shorthand for Inspirational Pep Ta...uh,well.
  • Will there be any single beat in this movie that isn't flat and processed and predictably shaped like a slice of American cheese?
  • Is that moment that Matt Damon is all "whoa"with his body when he hears the lion roar,straight out of Amateur Slapstick 101 or is this trailer's editing just completely unforgiving?
  • "I want them to have an authentic American experience."I hope Matt isn't talking about raising his kids within a zoo because I've never met anyone who grew up in a non-figurative one.
  • Let me guess,Mopey Teenager In Need of Fathering falls in love with Elle Fanning?Is this going to be a distracting subplot in order to have something for everyone ala that high school crush thread inCrazy Stupid Love?

Little Known Fact: Excessive Exposure to Bathetic Platitudes and Inspirational Media Causes MigrainesMAYBE SO

  • Though it looks insufferably like a Generic Inspirational Family Film with wild animals as merely decorative distraction,who knows.Trailers are meant to appeal to the widest possible audience.
  • Maybe the bear eats Quippy Cute Moppet?

The "No"column is awfully robust,I fear.

Where do you fall with this one?Or on Cameron Crowe in general actually?Tell me you at least love wild animals.