Oscar History

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Review:The Lion King

"You get a medal for sitting through this cynical film."-Mark

"Can you feel the hate tonight."-Brookesboy

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Entries in Mark Harris (5)

Oct 21 2017

Meet the Panelists for forthcoming Smackdown '44

The Next Supporting Actress Smackdownis in two weeks time-get your votes in by Nov 3rd please. Please only vote on the performances you've seen.Your host has been backstage doing the difficult (but exciting) work of wrangling up critics,artists,and writers to discuss these Oscar years with you.

Here's this month's batch of critics,artists,and writers that we've wrangeld for the event as we finish up our screenings.

First Time Smackdowners

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Apr 04 2017

Doc Corner: Is 'Five Came Back' Netflix's Oscar Moment?

by Glenn Dunks

It can sometimes feel like we've seen WWII from so many perspectives that there can't possibly be new ways to convey the weight of its tragedy.ThatFive Came Back,a new three-part mini-docu-series on Netflix,manages to succeed at doing this is just one of its many virtues.Adapted from Mark Harris' book of the same name by Harris himself and directed by Laurent Bouzereau,this is a three-hour documentary about the work of five of Hollywood's biggest directorial names of the 1930s who enlisted to support the American war effort the only way that they knew how: through film,and the personal battles they fought in order to do so.

They were Frank Capra,John Huston,George Stevens,William Wyler and John Ford – the latter of whom gets the biggest laugh labelling documentaries in the 1930s as "silly things that rich kooks made"– each of whom left behind successful careers without the promise of anything when they came back.

If they came back at all.The series charts their early efforts before America's entering the war after Pearl Harbour in 1941 before digging more deeply in the works that they produced from the front lines on the ground and in the skies....

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Oct 09 2014

Stage Door: "You Can't Take It With You"& "From Here To Eternity"

The Best Picture winners of 1938 and 1953,which were based on hit plays and best selling novels respectively,have moved to the stage.Let's take a look...

Annaleigh Ashford dances up a comic storm in "You Can't Take It With You"

For this Broadway revival of the classic 30s comedy,famously moviefied by Frank Capra back in the day,they've gone all star: James Earl Jones plays the tax-avoiding follow-your-dreams grandfather,Broadway vet and A+ comic actress Christine Nielsen (recently Tony nominated forVanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike) is the easily distracted mother of a large brood,Rose Byrne her gorgeous daughter (essentially the 'Marilyn Munster' of this band of eccentrics),Fran Krantz fromDollhouseandCabin in the Woodsher rich would-be fiancee and Annaleigh Ashford,who has been on such a brilliant role these past couple of years with her ex-hooker lesbian receptionist onMasters of Sexand as a factory girl in Broadway'sKinky Boots,is the dance-crazed busybody.

If you've boned up on your 1930s Best Picture winners you'll know that those are the roles once inhabited by Lionel Barrymore,Spring Byington (Oscar-nominated),Jean Arthur,Jimmy Stewart and Ann Miller;tough acts to follow all.

As it turns out the theatrical and farcical antics of this family play better on stage...

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Aug 27 2014

Linkman & Emmywoman

First Things First: at Movie City News the "Gurus of Gold"have begun (yes,I'm a part of it again) andas David Polandpoints out there are seven films that made almost every list:Birdman,Gone Girl,Boyhood,andUnbrokentied at 1st place withFoxcatcher,Selma,andInterstellarjust behind them.Most pundits are feeling these as Best Picture threats.Look at the whole chart though to see how everything fared.The highest ranking films that were not on my list (we were asked to submit 15 films) areWildandInherent Vice.

Early rave reviews at the Venice Film Festival fromThe Telegraph,VarietyandTHRand a couple positive but not ecstatic reviews fromThe GuardianandThe Film Stageare up and surely bode well for the film.  I'm holding off on reading them as I want the movie fresh when I see it.But others may want to dive right in.

Anger Making
Yahootalks to Tyler Perry.TheMadeafranchise star/director claims he didn't know who David Fincher was when he signed on toGone Girland he wouldn't have done it if he knew how "mainstream"he was.What the F'in hell?Yes,Tyler Perry a bastion of "edgy"cinema.He's also been a voting member of the Director's branch of the Academy since 2009 which means he's been asked to judge and vote on Fincher's work twice.Way to be a conscientous voter!

Other Linkage
The Playlist10 overlooked greats from the 1970s.I gladly support the inclusion ofGirlfriends(1978) but I haven't seen the others
HitFixDeborah Ann Woll talks about moving on toDaredeviland the difficulty of leavingTrue Blood's Jessica behind
PajibaRidley Scott is 76 years-old but his plate is super full.How many more films is he planning to make exactly?
Cinematically Insanewill layoffs and monetization at Turner Broadcasting affect TCM?
My New Plaid PantsSuperman takes the ice bucket challenge
The DissolveMike D'Angelo looks back at "Best Actress"of 1989 -- we all know that shoulda been Michelle Pfeiffer but others are discussed,too.
VFNeil Marshall (The Descent) wants to direct a Black Widow movie.Also talksGame of Thrones

Emmy Hangover
The NibLiza Donnelly's caricatures from the evening
Pajiba's liveblog with Courtney Enlow icymi
We Recycle Movie's "lateblog"with Anne Marie and Margaret
Towleroadicymi it on Emmy night,Billy on the Street's Emmy dash was the most hilarious of few hilarious things that night
Showtrackerwonders ifGame of Thronescan rise in Emmy estimation withBreaking Badmoving out of the way
Salonwhat the Emmys revealed about the broadcast vs cable war on television

VultureMark Harris has a long read on "The Making of Foxcatcher"- so much Mark Harris to read.(I'm reading "Five Came Back"very slowly because I am learning so much about late 30s/early 40s Hollywood on every page.)
Funny Or DieMark Duplass and Ted Danson go to couples therapy over Prince's Purple Rain suit

Fun Interview
Assignment Xtalks to one of our favorite British thespians,Olivia Williams about her new series,films (very briefly),makes fun of her own accent work and this,my favorite part,on her stellar role in Joss Whedon'sDollhouse:

Joss legendarily starts to adapt your character as the series goes on to how you really are,and I started off as sort of a calculating bitch and ended up being rather motherly and a bit of an alcoholic,and I can't think where he got that from.


Feb 20 2014


The New RepublicMark Harris interviewed on the politics of movies and Oscar races
GuardianMeryl Streep joins the period dramaSuffragetteas feminist iconEmmeline Pankhurst.The film stars Carey Mulligan with Helena Bonham-Carter and Romola Garai in the supporting cast (but it sounds like Streep's got a glorified cameo)
Dissolvea graphic designer looks atHer

Gurus of Goldif you haven't checked out the charts lately,you should.David Poland has posted "if we could sway the Academy and there's not much time left to do so.
Daily BeastMichael Musto talks to an Oscar voter about how friendliness at luncheons affects his vote and how scandals don't
MNPPon the bad wigs in Bryan Singer movies.Ugh.Quicksilver,one of my favorite characters,looks just atrocious
Twitteran account sharingTop Gunscene by scene...almost frame by frame.LOL
TFEhave you voted on our recent polls?Bette Midler?Beauty vs.Beast:Hustle?Who you want to win the pic & acting Oscars?亚博主页
Josh Cooleya Pixar artist does really fun cartoons of R rated movies,like this one fromPsycho...

Moving Picture Blogclassy low-key Oscar campaigning from Jeremy Irons circa 1991.An SNL classic
First Showingtalks to Matthew McConaughey about the ambitions ofInterstellar
Slategreat piece on that makeover moment at the tale end ofFrozen's "Let it Go"-- that's the only part I don't like myself and this is exactly why!

Exit Vids
The Onion nails it again while talking Netflix.This is exactly what I use Netflix for though I pay a lot more than $5 a month!Also the "Kid Oscars"...亚博主页I think the Captain Phillips one is best because methinks it's funnier when kids adlib rather than read dialogue.