Awkward

John?

Oh, hi LiveJournal. I know, I haven't posted in a while. What's that? Have I found somebody else? No, it's no like that. Well, I'll let you down easy. There is someone else. No, it's not your fault. Well, it's just that your functionality has been a little subpar lately, and you don't fit my lifestyle. The truth is, there is someone else; her name is tumblr, and she makes me happy. Don't cry. Please. I'm happy with tumblr, and you should be happy for me, too. See, why do you think I looked for other blogs? You never thought about me. Goodbye LJ.

If you could decifer that, you might have figured out that I've ditched LJ for tumblr. I leave this up for a brief transition period, but I'm here now.

Byyyeeee.

2009: The Year Of Matt Damon


He can investigate anyone he fucking wants to!

2009: The Year of the Damon. Only nominated once for an acting Oscar (supporting for Good Will Hunting), he did win (share) the 'scar for Best Original Screenplay (with Ben Affleck). He's unarguably one of the decade's finest 'young' actors, and I hope he enjoys extreme critical acclaim for the next decade as well. Let's take a look on what's on tap for 2009: 
 
Matt Damon in Raging Bull
The Informant
Coming on October 9th (after being rescheduled from March 27th and Sep 18th), Warner Bros. brings us this Steven Soderbergh directed tale of corporate whistleblowing, starring Matt Damon as Mark Whitacre. Mark Brokovich anyone? This has been in the can for a while (hence the original release date 5 days from now), and Damon is being carefully eyed for a lead actor nomination (hence the release date move to Oscar territory). It's also Soderbergh's #2 2009 release; he's got Sundance's The Girlfriend Experience from Magnolia coming in on May 22nd. That's about that high-class hooker/senator thing from last year, though it's real and a real porn star is the lead actress. 

 
Matt Damon at war (real guy for comparison)
Green Zone
This one from Universal is rumored to be coming to us around November or December; I'm calling Thanksgiving week (you heard it here). At this point they've got Nine, Old Dogs, and now The Box has been bumped to H'ween for James McTiegue's Ninja Assassin. What appeared to be dead in the water release (originally scheduled for January) now gets a prime date. That gives The Box it's seventh or so release date move; it was moving closer and closer to Oscar territory (possibly to help Frank Langella's supporting performance get noticed), but this new move is pretty 'aw, fuck it.' Warner Bros. can make so clutch plays, but I say boo to that. Back to Green Zone. It's about the life of solider(s) inside Iraq's demilitarized 'green' zone. No one's heard much because, well, Universal sucks at buzz.
 

Looks cute.
Ponyo On The Cliff By The Sea
This Japanese animated film came out there last summer, and is (probably) eyeing some kind of U.S. release because, well, it's been dubbed by an American voice cast, including Damon and Cate Blanchett, among others. Did you know Damon was the voice of Spirit in Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron?
 

Nice ass Eastwood.
The Human Factor
Directed by Clint Eastwood, this one's coming to us sometime in December. After the massive success of Gran Torino, Warner Bros. quickly added 'Untitled Clint Eastwood Project' for December 2009. Between then and now, it's still widely considered the  'Untitled Clint Eastwood Project,' but the normal title is rumored to be The Human Factor. It's about Nelson Mandela (played by Morgan Freeman) and some guy in short-shorts (Damon). Eastwood wouldn't be my first choice for a film about a South African president, but, well... it'll be good. When I think of Mandela, I always think of Norman Mineta instead, GWB's Transportation secretary. I'm batty! Damon's also being eyed for a supporting statue for this as well.
 
Hi! Do u no wehn r movie coms out??!?1?
Margaret
Originally filmed in 2005 (!), Margaret is rumored to finally be reaching screens this year at the hand of Fox Searchlight (who is also loaded this year). It stars Anna Paquin (whom I detest, but, somehow, like most of her work) as a witness to a bus accident that becomes more, I guess. Matt Damon play her love interest? and Mark Ruffalo's in there somewhere. Colored me pessemistic, but, then again, why wouldn't I see it?

That's it for 2009, but don't discount a cameo appearance in some random movie. He popped up in 2007's Youth Without Youth and 2008's Che without anyone's knowledge. He's so fucking sneaky like that. He's what's on tap for 2010 and beyond...

The Adjustment Bureau
A Philip K. Dick adaptation.

Bourne 4
Some kind of continuation starring Jason Bourne. A prequel? A sequel? It's said to be adapted from a 4th Bourne novel (not written by Ludlum), but not a straight-forward adaptation. Either way, I don't give a care.

It was rumored that he was offered Kirk in the new Star Trek. Good choice? Adrien Brody was supposed to be Spock, too.
 

Apparently Gary Sinise was in the running for whoever that guy is.

So far, he's got 5 movies (maybe) coming out in 2009... that's what Sammy Jackson had in 2008. Except Damon won't be signing any picture deals anytime soon. 
 

A Few Things & Review Revue

I'm combining two fan-favorite entry types into one fantastic super-entry... a Review Revue and A Few Things!

Review Take Three: Synecdoche, New York

  

It's still heartbreaking, terrifying, and incredibly sad; just this time it was in stunning Blu-ray (makes it more sad). I think I understood it less this time, but enjoyed it more. I think I love it so much because I can't understand what's going on. I've upgraded to motion picture.

"Sometimes I fantasicize about Caden dying; behind able to start over guilt free."
"Does that feel terrible, Caden?"
[Caden nods yes, holding back tears]

Rating: Still 5 out of 5 stars
Motion Picture

---


Review: Serpico

  

A very powerful and real picture; the 70s keep getting better. Lumet continues to crank out hits for me, and this is not exception. Pacino blasts into the American conciousness, performing more originally than he did The Godfather the year before. His specific style (yelling, cursing, etc.) becomes evident. The handheld camerawork at 105 different locations really defines this film, as well as it's true life police corruption storyline.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Film

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Review: The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford

  

A beautiful western (in the east) of epic proportions. Roger Deakins's cinematography is exhibit one; just stunning camerawork through the use of 'Deakinizer' lens (which created a blurred look on the edges of the screen), the stark contrast between dark and light, and the utilization of the grandiose set pieces, which is exhibit two. I guess there's still pristine, untouched wilderness in Alberta (where it was filmed). Beautiful pine trees and such. I can go on and on about how the film looks, but the performances were notable as well. Pitt steps into a villainous (albeit misunderstood) role as Jesse James (whom he bears a noticeable resemblance to) and plays perfectly. Casey Affleck (in an Oscar-nominated role) shines as the coward Robert Ford; it's a nuanced performance for the ages. Pretty soon Ben's gonna be Casey's brother. Zooey Deschanel turns up for a few scenes near the end (many of her scenes were cut so the 4-hour running time could be trimmed down to the theatrical 160 minutes). She seriously had like a minute and a half of screen time, but it was her. Ted Levine turns up for a few minutes as well; he's my pick for Best Supporting Actor in 2009, as 'the warden' in Scorsese's Shutter Island. I don't recommend this film; I only admire it selfishly and it's been on my mind since. Also can't get the magical 'Song For Jesse' out of my head (the wonderful score was done by Nick Cave, and it's all on YouTube).

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Film


Beautiful scene.


 
---

Review: Suicide Kings

  

A very shitty movie with an inspired performance from Walken and a laugh-out-loud one from Denis Leary and his stingray boots. Seriously, don't waste your time with this shitflick. It's such a poorly-made movie. 

Rating: 1 out of 5 stars
Flick

<->

A Few Things...

-I'm in progess on The Godfather: Part III. I can feel it's inferiority to parts I & II already, but I must muscle through it. I've heard the tall tales of Sofia Coppola's acting ability, but christ it's bad. It's director-father-puts-his-own-daughter-in-his-foregone-movie-even-though-she-has-no-talent bad.

-This weekend's box office competition will be pretty interesting (the first of 2009). There's a shitty movie, a potentially awesome movie, and a been-there done-that FratPackTM movie. And what they call The Great Buck Howard; a shitty Sundance 2006 (maybe) holdover that's finally getting it's chance to suck to the tune of 50 theaters.


Nic Cage in The Happening II: Knowing

 
-Elegy hit the DVD stores (what are those?) yesterday. It looks like one of those overlooked 2008 films that I wll continue to overlook. It features, according to the DVD material, Oscar winner Dennis Hopper and... Penelope Cruz; whoever the fuck that is. If you not an idiot, you know DH has never won an Oscar (he has, however, been nominated (for Hoosiers and writing Easy Rider)). Penelope Cruz did just win an Oscar, though, in case didn't hear; a fact that didn't care to add.
 

She looks cuter with bangs. He looks cuter without bangs.
 
-Watchmen LEGO guys (take note... set includes Indiana Jones and Batman). Don't worry, these are fan made; not for production. Do check out that, though:


 
I personally enjoy Ozymandius's cat-thing becoming a speaking role.Watch out! (Also not real).
 
-Check out Nic Cage: A Career In (Baffling) Pictures and The Nic Cage Movie Plot Generator, both courtesy of Cracked.

-I deactivated my Facebook account, and it feels great. No more figuring out if people are in a class that sucks, or have to go to work, or just posted a new album of them drinking on (insert weekday) night, or any other fucking thing I don't give a shit about (everything). As much as those updates are important to me, I find that it (life) is much better without them.
 
 
That's my office.
-I recently found out that my high school is offering a Facebook class. Coming from the school that has Fantasy class and AP classes in 10th grade, that's worse.

-I hate celebrity gossip, but these people are hardly 'celebrities:' Did yoy know Michelle Williams and Spike Jonze are dating? I didn't. Who better than to fill Heath Ledger's void (or Williams's void, for that matter (and by void I mean vagina)). Speaking of Jonze, the Where The Wild Things Are poster came out yesterday, and the trailer will be attached to Monsters vs. Aliens on the 27th. I will not be going to see MVA, but instead I will see it like a normal person that day online. For free.

 
You don't carry the diaper bag unless you're in it to win it.

-Stay tuned for Best Movie Music, coming later this week!

Review Revue: A Lot

Some movies, some films, a couple of flicks, some experiences, and an abomination. Here goes...

---

Watchmen



This probably would have deserved it's own review if it had been good. Whether you had high expectations going in, or low expectations, you have to admit; as a reader of the graphic novel, justice was not done. I read the whole in four days four days prior to 369, and I was glad I did. I was able to be way more critical of the film and understand most of the subtle things the film felt it didn't need to explain. One of the novel's strengths was creating the 1980s sense of dread due to the threat of mutually-assured destruction by hand of the Soviets or by our own hand. I never truly understood how close the Cold War was from going into a 'real' war mode until I read Watchmen. Of course, in Watchmen, it takes that level to an extreme (and Nixon's president) (and there are superheroes), but the translation of the national consciousness was just the same. That's the one thing the film didn't translate; that sense of dread. I can disqualify the film on just that level, but I'll go on. I hated 300. It was graphic, violent pornography with no narrative and empty characters. Filmed behind countless greenscreens and filled with the cheesiest slow motion sequences, it was no more than a way for hack Zack Snyder to show off his non-talent. In Watchmen, it's much of the same. There's a few more characters, and the source material is actually important. I could dissect specific scenes, and point on certain elements that made me cringe, but I'll spare the nitpicking and say boo to just the elements I mentioned above. The one thing that stood out, for me, was the marvelous title sequence, set to Dylan's "The Times They Are A Changing" Some say it clique to set a montage of times changing to said song, but I say it was perfect and captured countless pages on the novel in a few minutes of screen time; it gave me chills. From there, it got boring. The placement of Hendrix's "All Along The Watchtower" seemed like a last minute squeeze-in, like 'oh shit we have to put this in here;' it didn't fit with the scene. The ending switcheroo didn't do justice to the squid, but it kind-of accomplished the same effect. All in all, someone had to adapt it; it's just a shame that a gimmicky director like Snyder had to. The Spill crew mentioned David Fincher as someone who could have pulled it off. I agree.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Movie


---

The Untouchables



The Untouchables clocks in at #4 on my Bottom 50. I'll start by saying the De Niro as Al Capone was a joy to watch. I could watch his three or four scenes again and pretend their in a different movie. The rest was the crappiest, ill-conceived, poorly-directed drivle I've ever seen (save number 3, 2, and 1 on my Bottom 50 (Ghost Rider, Cube 2: Hypercube, and Slumdog Millionaire respectively)). Nay-sayers will say 'oh, it's just campy,' and that is worst excuse possible. This was not campy because it was serious. I have lost all respect for Kevin Costner and his fucking terrible performance, and Brian DePalma (it's my first of his movies, so I probably won't be checking out his other shit anytime soon). De Niro is safe. A huge, limp dick, fucked-face disappointment of a movie.

Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
Abomination

---


Annie Hall



Not a fan.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Movie


---

Blindness



Great.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Film

---


sex, lies, and videotape



Ooh.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Film

---


The Promotion



Cute.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Movie

---


War, Inc. 



Fuck.

Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars
Flick

---


Lakeview Terrace



Awesome.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Cinematic Experience

---

Crash (1997)



Sex.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Cinematic Experience

---


W.



Ugh.

Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars
Movie

---


Running With Scissors



No.

Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars
Flick


---

A FEW ADDITIONAL NOTES

> I'm not watching The Truman Show again unless it's Blu-ray.
> I'm in progress on Serpico and The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford
>
After those, I'm settling down with either Synecdoche, New York (take three) on Blu-ray, City Of God (take 1.5 (I'll explain)), or The Graduate)
>
I discovered BitTorrent and downloaded 44 movies whilst on a non-Bryant internet connection
> I'm in possession of 79 movies that I have yet to see... time to get cranking.

Review Revue: Too Many To List II

I lied; I now love two of these, like two, and still hate one... Without further adieu...

  
 
The Contender
Not be confused with the defunct boxing reality show than ran on NBC a few years back and actually made a successful network jump to ESPN for an additional season or two. The Condenter is Rod Lurie liberal bullshit. In additional to Rod Lurie's liberal bullshit, the liberal bullshit of Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, and David Geffen, the then-stakeholders of Dreamworks SKG, demanded editing to make it more liberal, so it could be viewed as pro-Gore propaganda in lieu of the 2000 election a week after the film's release. I'm not exactly sure how the film is pro-Gore, after seeing it, but it sure is pro-Jeff Bridges (he plays President Evan Jackson). I can say fullwell that he's the best fictional president I've seen portrayed on the silver screen. Here's the best part... just two years before Bridges played Jeffrey 'The Dude' Lebowski in Joel & Ethan Coen's masterpiece The Big Lebowski, a film about bowling, among other things. About a third of whole movie takes place in a bowling alley, though we never see The Dude bowl. In Bridge's second scene in The Contender, he's bowling. And, President Jackson's right-hand-man, is played by Sam Elliot, a.k.a The Stranger (and the narrator) from Lebowski. It reminds me of Peter Stormare's characters from Fargo and Lebowski as well. Throughout the entirety of Fargo, Stormare's Gaear keeps asking Buscemi's Carl if they can 'go to pancakes house,' much to Carl's chagrin. In Stormare's first scene in Lebowski, he and his Nihlist buddies are eating at pancakes house. Now that that's out of the way, I can tell you that this is straight-up hippie bullshit, packaged in the most preachy and left-wing form possible. But, that being said, it tells a great story that would be awesome in real life. The mechanisms of the executive branch are butterflyed open for all to see, and it's a doozy to watch. If you like politics, The West Wing, or, yeah, that's pretty much it... then you should check it out. Come to think, it's like The West Wing if all 8 seasons where bottled into two hours. Sound enticing? It is. 

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Movie
    

Meet Joe Black
An absolutely elegant film. I went in this relatively blind, expect for a 'don't buy it, you'll hate it' suggestion, and was shocked to see a 46% rotten Tomatometer and general disdain for the length, premise, and melodrama. Color me just the opposite; this was definitely my cup of tea. Top 50 for sure. Claire Forlani is beautiful; it's a shame she's drifting into the ether in terms of being a actress. He last memorable was opposite Jackie Chan in The Medallion (sarcastic thumbs-up for you, Claire). Any fan of her raw beauty and impeccable timing and ability can relish in her performance her. It's so nuanced and calculated, every fidget, stare, and step is mesmorizing. The same can be said about Pitt as well. He's essentially playing a child inside a, well, Brad Pitt, unaware of his new surroundings. He has to adapt, teaching himself how to eat, sit down, and make sweet, sweet love. Side note: best PG-13 sex scene. Fuck that: best sex scene. Loved it. Everything a sex scene should be, even without nudity. Hopkins play a good guy for once, and does a superb job of it. We are also treated to memorable supporting performances from Marcia Gay Harden, Jake Weber (made we miss watching Medium), and Jeffrey Tambor (I know!). All things considered, Black explores a question nobody thought to ask (except the filmmakers of the original movie this is based on, Death Takes A Holiday); what if God/Death/The Angel Of Death/Some Mythical Being That Created Us/Dr. Manhattan was one of us? And what would he/she/it want to learn? And why it would want to choose a stud-muffin as it's guide? It's just a perfect, perfect film that goes on and on, but then again, I wished it would never end. And... awesome vehicular homicide scene.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Motion Picture

  

What Just Happened?
What
tries to be a satire, but instead, it's just a straight adaptation of life as a Hollywood producer, which, as the movie shows us, doesn't just suck; it's boring. It's fun seeing the mechanics of how a movie is produced, but then again, it's the shadiest and least interesting element of the life of a film. As for comedy? The extent of the film's hilarity comes from 'OMG Bruce Willis has a beard and they can't shoot the movie! Isn't that funny?' Robert De Niro is top-notch excellent, despite the negativity I have. I've never not liked a De Niro performance, and this is no exception. He's the only character with depth, and the only character I cared for. I liked seeing Catherine Keener as a studio head, again, just liked her role in S1M0NE. What a thing to be typecast as, huh? If you've read any review for this, positive or negative, you know it's extremely inside, which basically means 'this is funny because we, the filmmakers, have experienced it; therefore, it is funny to us, and we don't really care.' That being said, it is a good window into the Hollywood mechanism, but what we get to see is bastard-coated bastards with bastard filling. Pretty much. 

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
Flick

  

In The Bedroom
     I'll start by pointing out the excellence of the poster (above). The top half features Matt & Ruth in the last scene of the film, and the bottom half features Frank & Natalie in the first scene of the film. To top it all off, it's quietly brilliant and shows the quadratic dissonance between wife/mother, husband/father, son and son's lover. Going in, I expected a stark commentary and contrast between the sexual relationship of an aging couple and, on the other hand, that of a young couple. Just look at the poster and the title. I was wrong; in fact, 'the bedroom' refers to the inside netting of a lobster trap. When two lobsters enter the bedroom, the begin to turn on each other, illustrating the need to empty the traps often. There's so subtext there that relates to the rest of the film, but I won't get into it. So, it's not all about sex, but it deals a lot with lobsters and a bunch of other things you never see coming.
     The film takes place in and around the Camden/Rockland, Maine area, as well as a brief venture to Old Orchard Beach. I don't believe I've ever visited the former, but as for the latter, I know it well and recognized most of the landmarks gleefully (OMG that's Palace Playland!!!1!). Camden is a beautiful town, and the film perfectly captured the true elegance of the Maine coast and it's small-town charm. It's the first time I've seen a film set in Maine and, afterwards, have been proud to say 'I live there,' and truly feel blessed to live in the land of 'the way life should be.' To me, that was the most moving element for me. Onto the film. Drector Todd Field, no stranger to Maine (the 'cabin' is his personal summer home), and the subilties of what it means to be from Maine shows (I totally just wrote the Poland Spring slogan without even thinking about). For example, there's Oakhurst milk, Hannaford brand products, Route 73 through Camden, Red Sox games on the WEEI Red Sox Radio Network; just to name a few. This is nitpicky, but, during the Old Orchard Beach scene, a refer is made to the airport behind south of OOB, while PWM is north of OOB. Then again, they could have been talking about Logan, so I'll let it slide.
     Nominated for 4 Academy Awards (Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Actor (Wilkinson), Best Actress (Spacek), and Best Supporting Actress (Tomei)), it won none of them; shocking. Then again, getting an Oscar these day doesn't mean shit (SM). Once the story goes where it goes, it investigates emotions so subtlely and deals with the subject mattter so masterfully; it's a dream for the characters and it's a dream to watch. If you live in Maine, it's required viewing. If not, treat yourself to an introspective into the psyches of four deep characters and what drives them to do what they do.
   The film is based on a French short story. The credits and such are in French; it threw me off quite a bit. That's it. Bye. 

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Film
  


Der Krieger und die Kaiserin (The Princess And The Warrior)
I'm almost through with Tom Tykwer's filmography:

- I just tried Winterschlafer a few weeks ago and couldn't get through it.
-The International is begging me to go see itself, but I can't shell out the benjies for what could potentially be a pretty bad movie; i'll wait until a good ripoff comes online.
-He has a short in Paris, je t-aime as well (come to think, so do the Coens, and I've seen all their features).

So far, Lola>Perfume>>>This>Heaven>What I Saw Of Winterschlafer

Through the entirety of the film, I was hung up on Benno Fürmann, the male lead, and who he looked like. Until about thirty seconds ago, I settled on Patrick Wilson, reluctantly, but positive about the situation.



But then it hit me; he's the German doppleganger/male equivalent of VERA FARMIGA.



Eh?
It's not to put Vera down, but only to boost Benno. He's hot! Vera Farmiga hot!

Anyway, Der Krieger und die Kaiserin, or The Princess And The Warrior, or, as it's literally translated, The Warrior And The Empress. I would have liked the latter better; the former makes we think of Xena: Warrior Princess. The film, fortunately, does not feature a warrior or a princess, but as you can guess, you're supposed to assume the two main characters are such in their own light. And I vouch for that. Anyway, it's a glorious film. I could have ended in one of sixteen different places, and I would have been satisfied. Instead of doing that, though, the story dragged on. It was going to a succinct destination the whole time, but the general tension created by the music and the dialogue throughout the last hour created a sense of 'it must be coming to a close within a few minutes' except for the fact that it was like that for a whole hour. Franka Potente is once again mesmorizing, except this time we don't get to see her run as much. It was a very imaginative film that I liked. 

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Film


 

I'm Finished


 
Here's a little mini-review... I just finished Watchmen moments ago, and, it was very good. Not life changing, but intense, prophetic, and epic nonetheless. I'm glad to have it under my belt going into the theater on Friday.

That makes this the fifth book I've read in preparation for a 2009 film, joining the ranks of Shutter Island, The Road, The Lovely Bones, and The Time Traveler's Wife.

It's a different experience going into a film with having 'read the book' beforehand. I can't count The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button, because Eric Roth did a great job of completely changing everything about F. Scott Fitzgerald's short story, save for the loose premise and the name of the protagonist. I'm not saying it was a bad thing, but I would have loved a one-and-a-half to two-hour line-for-line adaptation of it; though, what we got in the end was spectacular. I guess the only other example I can think of is Into The Wild. Not a book I particularly enjoyed or gave a shit about, but having read the source material first made for a more pleasant and revealing cinematic experience. I sure, having not read Watchmen before hand, I would be seriously WTF coming out of the theater. It's a challenging novel; one that challenges the reader's own existence and fragility in a cruel and unstable world. I was able to draw some stark parallels between the alternate-1985 that's been envisioned and the world today. Watchmen describes a desperate man, afraid of nuclear in the U.S., killing his whole family so theywouldn't have to go through it. Fast forward to today; an L.A. man, distraught over losing his job, kills his family. There are others comparisons, but some are a little spoilery. So, I'll leave at that. Color me very anxious for Friday.
 

Review: Cache (Hidden)

  

Another exercise in monotony and pain from director Michael Haneke. If you've seen Funny Games (1997 or 2008), then you know Haneke doesn't make enjoyable or entertaining films; he tries to create the most uncomfortable and unwatchable works of arts possible, complete with 5+ minute interludes of nothingness, meant to extract the viewer from the film through sheer boredom. In Funny Games, it was cool; I had never seen those techniques to create tension and fear, so I enjoyed it... to an extent. Watching this, it's solidified my incling of Haneke being a hack. He's better at making art than anything enjoyable. If you enjoy staring at a Rembrandt for an hour and trying to figure out the meaning, I recommend this. If you enjoy taught, tightly-edited thrillers with real tension and a score, perhaps, I do not recommend this. If you intrigued by the deep gash on the poster, I suggest fast-forwarding to when you see it, and enjoy that scene. I could say some good things, but I won't. You've been warned.

Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars
Film

The Biggest Abomination On Film Wins Film's Top Prize



Every Indian who contributed to the production of this film doesn't yet realize that a movie about how shitty India is is actually a movie about shitty India is. Stop smiling! You are being exploited for the sake of Danny Boyle's career and for America to look better in comparison. If you grow up in the slums of a third-world country, don't worry; you one true love (whom you've know for a few days of your pitiful life) still holds out hope for you, even though your own brother basically sold her to the highest bidder. Don't worry about that, either. He'll kill himself after having a sudden attack of conscience. And yes, money solves everything. She only loves you because, deep down, she's a money-grubbing whore. Either she remembers you from when she was five or she's in it for the cool million you just won. I could go on and on, but I'd rather just break into a precisely choregraphed dance number. I realize that it's inspired by Bollywood films. But, BOLLYWOOD MOVIES SUCK. They are cheap knock-offs of American cinema that should not be recognized by Americans or British filmmakers in any way, shape, or form. Basically, this movie is being recognized for being a double regurgitation of American love/redemption/destiny-type stories that are recognized by the once highly-regarded Academy. The fact that this film even got any nominations is beyond belief. Every element of this film is terribly executed, cheap, and just plain terrible. I stand by declaration of this being the worst film I have ever seen. It is a sad, sad day; I can't believe an abomination such as this has won the hearts of so many shit-headed fuck-faces across the globe. Fuck this movie, fuck everyone associated with it, and fuck anyone who enjoyed even a second of it.

The 81st Annual Academy Awards... And The 1st Annual 'A Film Blog Goes LIVE'

BLINK AND MISSED exclusive never-before-seen footage of Public Enemies, Amelia, 500 Days Of Summer, Whatever Works, Inglourious Basterds, Sherlock Holmes, and more during the credits. I'm glad I stuck around!

I'm done. Thanks for following me on this wondrous and shitty night. Join me next year as Shutter Island wins Best Picture. Thank you!

11:53: Best Picture: Slumdog Millionaire. 12 for 24. Half right. Aww, nuts.

11:52 - God I love movies.

11:46 - I suppose it's better that Penn's up there shaming gay-haters than Rourke taking about his dogs and bangin' girls in the ass. Thanks for recognizing him, though. That was good.

11:44 - Sean Penn just snatched the V-card from Rourke so hardcore. OUCH. OUUCCH. Best Actor: Sean Penn. 11 for 23. I am a commy, homo-loving bastard, Sean. But, wow. That's an upset.

11:37 - What an epic line-up of MEN

11:33 - Best Actress: Kate Winslet, The Reader. 11 for 22. Whoop-de-doo.

11:24 - Alright: Hathaway, Rourke, Slumdog. Let's get it over with.

11:22 - Boyle's a great director, but it's too bad he's being rewarded for crap like Slumdog.

11:21: Best Director: Danny Boyle, Slumdog Millionaire. 11 for 21. 7th for Slumdog. And Boyle's on crack.

11:20 - I love David Fincher more than you.

11:19 - Ooh, Director before Actor/Actress.

11:15 - Not bad... except I hate the Queen.

11:11 - Death montage.

11:08 - At least we get to see non-Indians up there for a second.

11:07 - Best Foreign Film: Departures!!!???! What the fuck!? Ouch for Waltz. 10 for 20.

11:06 - What a random matchup. Neeson and the Slumdog chick?

11:01 - Best Original Song: Jai Ho, Slumdog Millionaire. Biggest crime of the fucking night. Not only did they cut down the fucking category to three nominees, but K-Oed the best songs and then snubbed the only real song for the win. FUCK. 10 for 19.

11:00 - I'm told that's John Legend. Whatever.

10:57 - Sad. Who is that in place of Gabriel? Whomever he is, he's not doing it justice.

10:56 - Boo. Still bitter about this montage thing. And the Bruce snub.

10:54 - Best Score: Slumdog. 10 for 18

10:51 - Pieces from each score... I like that.

10:49 - Is it a big surprise that a little asian girl can work a camera?

10:47 - This won't be over soon.

10:46 - Does PSH have cancer? What's with his nice little wool cap. Oh wait, chemo makes your beard hair fall out, too. I learned that from Sunny.

10:42 - Jerry Lewis gets an award for being funny, I guess. And for being a mega-humanitarian

10:41 - I shudder when I hear Eddie Murphy and nominee in the same phrase.

10:34 - Best Film Editing: Slumdog Millionaire. That one I got. 10 for 17.

10:33 - God, it's just sound. Get off!

10:31 - Best Sound Mixing: Slumdog Millionaire. I mixed 'em up! 9 for 16.

10:30 - OK, they just played fucking Mr. Blue Sky!!!

10:30 - Lemme guess; mixing is next.

10:29 - Best Sound Editing: The Dark Knight. Damn, I tagged it for mixing. 9 for 15.

10:28 - Will is so suave.

10:27 - Best Visual Effects: Button, once again! 3 for 7. Me: 9 for 14.

10:25 - Awesome. Action montages are the best.

10:23 - Now onto post-production awards.

10:22 - Tom Cruise doesn't have a cat.

10:19 - They just played the Cloverfield Anthem!

10:17 - Right on to short subject; they ain't messing around. Best Documentary Short-Subject: Smile Pinki. 8 for 13.

10:16 - I believe in magic, Phillipe!

10:15 - Best Documentary Feature: Man On Wire. 8 for 12.

10:14 - Boo Bill Maher. Your ridiculous movie was crap. Don't try to plug it. Why are you presenting this category?

10:12 - What teeth!

10:11 - Good.

10:08 - The family. Best Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger. 7 for 11.

10:07 - Who's gonna accept?

10:06 - Brothers need the work, says Cuba Gooding Jr. (Boat Trip).

10:04 - Really Alan Arkin? Seymour Philip Hoffman?

9:56 - We can't have Gabriel play all of Down To Earth, but we can have this??

9:46 - Best Live-Action Short Film: Toyland. Four years of his life on a 15 minute film. Wow. 6 for 10.

9:45 - Way to highlight to worst comedies.

9:38 - God, the Mastercard Badger commercials ALWAYS get to me.

9:35 - I just got it. First comes the script, then the costume, makeup, and the filming. They're making a movie. The Oscar's is a movie! I may sound patronizing, but it is cool. Then wait; supporting actress is the first thing that happens?

9:34 - That was great. Best Cinematography: Slumdog Millionaire. 6 for 9.

9:32 - Yes! Joaquin Phoenix blasting!
 
9:30 - So, apparently having a hankering for a Coke is like heroin addiction.

9:25 - Like you know what Wings was, Robert and Amanda. Now for the romance montage. I LOVE these montages... they're like little Matt Shapiro vids all over again.

9:25 - Best speech yet. Just a huge list of names... and New Orleans.

9:24 - Best Makeup: The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button. Good. Button: 2 for 5. Me: 5 for 8.

9:23 - Jesus, they're blasting through this. Now, makeup. Still bitter over no Synecdoche nod.

9:20 - Best Costume Design: The Duchess! My dark horse takes it! 4 for 7.

9:17 - Best Art Direction: The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button. Button: 1 for 3. Me: 3 for 6.

9:15 - I loved Steve Martin and Tina Fey, by the way.

9:09 - Best Animated Short Film: La masion en petit cube. This guy can barely speak engrish. Then, domo arigato, Mr. Roboto. Furthering your own stereotypes. 2 for 5.

9:07 - Jack Black gives the award to the competition. Best Animated Feature. Do I even have to write it? WALL-E! 2 for 4.

9:03 - Boo! Don't reference your screenplay in your speech.

9:01 - Best Adapted Screenplay: Simon Beaufoy for Slumdog. The first of many... blah. 1 for 3.

9:00 - "Sleep me with me." "Absolutely." The best line from Button.

8:57 - This is all very innovative. Best Original Screenplay: Dustin Lance Black for Milk. He's gay! 1 for 2.

8:50 - The Hyundai commercials... that's definitely Jeff Bridges

8:48 - Best Supporting Actress: Penelope Cruz. 1 for 1

8:46 - This IS different. I love it!

8:39 - That was awesome.

8:31 - I can't wait to see Jack Nicholson in his sunglasses.

8:28 - I may be mistaken, but that Cardi's ad might have had a Benjamin Button reference as well.

8:25 - Michael Giacchino is doing the music. Good.

8:02 - Josh Brolin is married to Diane Lane?

8:01 - I'll be back at 8:30.

8:00 - WHAT!? A fucking red carpet special?

7:59 - And here... we... go.

7:58 - HUGH BARBARA LAP DANCE

7:57 - Hugh Jackman gave Barbara Walters a lap dance.

7:41 - An Oscar: "you can't eat it, you can't fuck it, and it won't get you into heaven." Mickey

7:36 - Cardi's Furniture just did their take on The Ram and The Joker. [shudder].

7:32 - Promo for The Soloist... featuring The Killers' 'Human.' Yay! Too bad it's gonna suck. If you disagree, then tell me why it's coming out April 24th.

7:30 - Now Mickey Rourke's with Barbara... and he has his hand down his pants.

7:27 - I'm watching the Concorde disaster Dateline... and I've seen it before.

7:24 - Barbara Walters is overrated. And my ABC sucks. Imagine watching a VHS tape that's being rewound.


[He doesn't look pleased]

Some pre-show highlights:

<> Mickey Rourke won the Best Male Lead award last night at the Independent Spirit Awards. Here's his acceptance in it's entirely. Let's just say it rivals Tracy Morgan:


<> New predictions:

As much as I don't want most of this to happen, here's how it'll go down:

Performance by an actor in a leading role
Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler

Performance by an actor in a supporting role
Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight

Performance by an actress in a leading role
Anne Hathaway in Rachel Getting Married

Performance by an actress in a supporting role
Penélope Cruz in Vicky Cristina Barcelona

Best animated feature film of the year
WALL-E, Andrew Stanton

Achievement in art direction
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Donald Graham Burt, Victor J. Zolfo

Achievement in cinematography
Slumdog Millionaire, Anthony Dod Mantle

Achievement in costume design
The Duchess, Michael O’Connor

Achievement in directing
Slumdog Millionaire, Danny Boyle

Best documentary feature
Man on Wire

Best documentary short subject
The Witness, Adam Pertofsky and Margaret Hyde

Achievement in film editing
Slumdog Millionaire, Chris Dickens

Best foreign language film of the year
Waltz with Bashir (Israel)

Achievement in makeup
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Greg Cannom

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score)
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,Alexandre Desplat

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original song)
“Down to Earth” from WALL-E by Peter Gabriel and Thomas Newman

Best motion picture of the year
Slumdog Millionaire

Best animated short film
Presto, Doug Sweetland

Best live action short film
Manon on the Asphalt, Elizabeth Marre and Olivier Pont

Achievement in sound editing
Slumdog Millionaire, Tom Sayers

Achievement in sound mixing
The Dark Knight, Lora Hirschberg, Gary Rizzo and Ed Novick

Achievement in visual effects
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Eric Barba, Steve Preeg, Burt Dalton and Craig Barron

Adapted screenplay
The Reader, David Hare

Original screenplay
In Bruges, Martin McDonagh

Just a few changes, but most importanty, I changed my hunches so I could conform to trends.

<> Check out the new avatar

A Few Things

<> I'll be live-blogging the Academy Awards tonight (if I can figure what that means and how to do it). Stay tuned for my witty remarks to what will be an interesting and new presentation of America's most prestiguous film award.

"If actors didn't have awards shows, how would they know if they were any good?" Anonymous (probably not)

  

<> Just watched Taking Chance on HBO. It premiered at Sundance last month, and picked up by HBO in lieu of a theatrical release. Kevin Bacon stars as a number-crunching marine who volunteers to transport a KIA to his family in Montana. It was a moving and significant film, one that investigates the effect that one fallen soldier can have on the most random people. The words 'why are we over there?' were only mentioned once, and the whole 'senselessness of war' issue wasn't touched upon, which was refreshing. The moral of the story was a little forgone, but all in all, it was worth it because I can say I saw a film from Sundance. 3.5 out of 5 stars

<> Just picked up the Zodiac Director's Cut on Blu-Ray. Quite worth it. Now, not only do I have it on standard def and Blu-ray, I have the book by Graysmith too. Words can't describe how much I love Zodiac; it's a perfect film that tells an awesome story. Fincher's cut tacks on an additional five minutes, and I was able to pick up on where those bits were added. Bloodier and more violent deaths and an extended 'four years later' montage, for example. And, oh, Blu-ray is so vivid and crisp. So worth it.



And look how awesome the box is