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With 2014 winding down, HitFix has been dabbling in all corners of the "year-in-review" game. Hopefully you've enjoyed the trip down recent memory lane. Now it's time for a thorough assessment of the year in film performances, and for a 12-month stretch marked in some quarters as "weak," there sure was a lot of stand-out work in front of the camera. One curious note on the year's best portrayals, as we see them, is how many of the characters seen on screen this year were broken or damaged, desperate to show a forthright side, or to earn love or respect. Or to just be who they are. As well and otherwise, there are brilliant examples of outward showmanship, and plenty others of internalized drama. The resulting cross-section is as varied as ever. It was tough to narrow it down even to 30, of course, so at the end of the day, great work didn't make the cut. »
- Matt Patches, Kristopher Tapley
2014 was a good year for women in film. Recently, it was revealed that the top ten most searched stars on IMDb this year were all women. This on its own might not mean much, given the off-screen personas of today’s women and the fascination with their personal lives. Coupled with a careful examination of the roles that women, especially young women, have played on screen this year, it’s easy to see that women’s roles in Hollywood may be headed in the right direction.
Emma Stone provided the first indication of this in 2014, with her work in The Amazing Spiderman 2. Though the movie is problematic on many levels, her performance as Gwen Stacy is one of the few things that make it work. Her Gwen is intelligent, ballsy, and determined, unafraid of the dangerous situations she finds herself in and unwilling to simply wait around for Peter Parker. »
- Joseph Allen
2014 was a remarkable year for movies big and small, and in spirit, here are top 10 lists from Thompson on Hollywood staffers and contributors. Anne Thompson: 1. "Birdman" Alejandro González Iñárritu took on the most audacious cinematic feat of the year —and corralled a posse of actors with balls, lead by Michael Keaton, Edward Norton and Emma Stone, to nail his dissection of Hollywood and the fragile balance between ego and id—shot in exhilarating long takes. 2. "Boyhood" Richard Linklater dreamed up the story of a boy growing over 12 years, from six to 18, and cast Ellar Coltrane as the kid and Patricia Arquette and Ethan Hawke as his parents. No one else could have conceived, written and directed this daredevil feat. 3. "Mr. Turner" Mike Leigh took his genius method and applied it to his passion project about the great English painter Jmw Turner, channeled to perfection by Cannes Best Actor winner Timothy. »
While the Sony hack appears to be over for the time being, more information is still coming forward that was leaked from various emails and documents from deep within the studio. By this point, everyone knows that Marvel was working hard to make a deal with Sony to bring Spider-Man into Captain America: Civil War. That deal never happened, but more details on exactly what was to take place have emerged, and they shed some light on the proposed The Amazing Spider-Man reboot that would have seen Marvel and Sony working close together. It is believed that Sony is still ready to reboot the franchise without Andrew Garfield in the lead.
Some of this new information both confirms and contradicts what we've heard in the recent past. It is speculated by Cbm that some of the past information was made up by foreign bloggers looking to cash in on the »
Alejandro González Iñárritu's film was edited to appear as though it was filmed in one continuous shot.
In an interview with The Guardian, Keaton said: "There was a part where Zach Galifianakis and I were saying: 'Why don't we make the movie the normal way? Why are we doing it like this?' Then you see it and … woah.
"At about minute four or 11, you feel that door behind you slowly click shut and you go: 'Ok, now I'm in. There's no getting off.' It might be extreme to say this, but other people have said it too so I'm gonna go ahead...Birdman has kinda…changed things."
The 63-year-old added: "I'm not saying you won't see traditionally made movies any more. But I've had meetings with directors »
2014 brought back some of our absolute favorite movie duos while new fictional pairs made their big-screen debuts.
Classic couples like Gwen Stacy and Peter Parker and Miss Piggy and Kermit reminded us why we fell in love with them in the first place. New romances like Hazel Grace and Augustus Waters shared in The Fault in Our Stars proved that falling in love can be the most magical and heartbreaking experience in the world.
We've compiled a list of our absolute favorite movie couples of the year. Check out the list below and watch the video above to see our beloved characters in action!
The cutest muppet duo starred in this year’s sequel to 2011’s The Muppets and their witty back-and-forth banter about marriage made us laugh, like always. Taking place in Europe, Constantine, a nearly-exact twin to Kermit and criminal mastermind extraordinaire, swaps places »
I guess the Florida Film Critics Circle really wanted their picks represented in the awards coverage space, seeing as I was pinged twice about it on Twitter today. I hardly see what the rush is, though, as it's more of the same. Kudos to them for picking the best film of the year and all, but as usual, we're getting to the point where these regional critics groups need to stop smelling each other's farts a bit and branch out if possible. At least this crowd got a bit adventurous in the foreign film category. Check out the nominees here, the full list of winners below and all the rest at The Circuit. Best Picture "Birdman" (Runner-up: "Boyhood") Best Director Richard Linklater, "Boyhood" (Runner-up: Alejandro González Iñárritu, "Birdman") Best Actor Michael Keaton, "Birdman" (Runner-up: Jake Gyllenhaal, "Nightcrawler") Best Actress Rosamund Pike, "Gone Girl" (Runner-up: Julianne Moore, "Still Alice") Best Supporting Actor J.K. Simmons, »
- Kristopher Tapley
Robert Duvall will be honored with the Icon Award and Alejandro G. Inarritu with the Director of the Year award at the Palm Springs Film Festival Gala on January 3.
Regarding Inarritu, who is receiving the award for the second time, Matzner said, “By creating the illusion that the film was shot in one take and directing award-worthy performances by Michael Keaton, Edward Norton, Emma Stone and a star-studded cast, Inarritu has created a brilliant and original dark comedy in ‘Birdman.'”
Held at the Palm Springs convention center, the gala will also present awards to previously announced honorees Richard Linklater, Julianne Moore, David Oyelowo, Rosamund Pike, Eddie Redmayne, J.K. Simmons, Reese Witherspoon and the cast of “The Imitation Game.” The festival runs January 2-12.
- Pat Saperstein
Palm Springs, CA (December 19, 2014) . The 26th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival(Psiff) will present Academy Award-winning actor Robert Duvall with the Icon Award and Academy Award-nominated director Alejandro G. Iñárritu with the Director of the Year Award for Birdman at its annual Awards Gala. The Gala will also present awards to previously announced honorees Richard Linklater, Julianne Moore, David Oyelowo, Rosamund Pike, Eddie Redmayne, J.K. Simmons, Reese Witherspoon and the cast of The Imitation Game. Presented by Cartier, and hosted by Mary Hart, the Awards Gala will be held Saturday, January 3 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. The Festival runs January 2-12.
.Robert Duvall gives an outstanding and amazingly realistic performance as Judge Joseph Palmer in The Judge,. said Festival Chairman Harold Matzner. .This is sure to be remembered in his long listof iconic character roles, including Tom Hagen in The Godfather films, Gus McCrae in Lonesome Dove, Mac Sledge in Tender Mercies, »
Standing alone against the threat of North Korean cyber terrorism, it’s your weekly movie news show the Movie Newsgasm. In your face, Kim Jong-un.
We’re only kidding. Please don’t hurt us.It’s a super-packed show this week. Super-packed meaning: lots of superhero stuff. Ben Affleck’s Batman suit for Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice has been revealed In Living Colour (although it’s still pretty black and white), plot details for that same movie – specifically how Superman’s Metropolis destruction binge affect the film’s events – have been reported, more bonkers plans for Spider-Man from the Sony email hacks and the directors for Marvel’s two part epic Avengers: Infinity War have been leaked. And it isn’t Joss Whedon *Gasp*!
Fmtv will be back next Friday for our Best Stories Of 2014 Movie Newsgasm Spectacular! Exciting. Subscribe here to be notified first when they are »
- Oli Davis
“This is sure to be remembered in his long list of iconic character roles, including Tom Hagen in The Godfather films, Gus McCrae in Lonesome Dove, Mac Sledge in Tender Mercies, Lt. Colonel Bill Kilgore in Apocalypse Now, The Apostle and so many others.”
“By creating the illusion that the film was shot in one take and directing award-worthy performances by Michael Keaton, Edward Norton, Emma Stone and a star-studded cast, Iñárritu has created a brilliant and original dark comedy in Birdman,” said Matzner »
- email@example.com (Jeremy Kay)
Matthew McConaughey may have had a McConaissance, but Michael Keaton is having a renaissance of his own this year. The actor best known for playing Beetlejuice and Batman won the People Magazine Award for Movie Performance of the Year - Actor for his role in the dark comedy Birdman. "I am extremely appreciative. I can't believe my fans hung in there this long and I am grateful to anyone who has ever given me a helping hand," said Keaton, 63, as he took the stage at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles on Thursday night. "I'm going to buy Jeff »
- Amanda Michelle Steiner, @amandamichl
Jimmy Kimmel's "Celebrities Read Mean Tweets" series is reliably laugh-out-loud funny, with each edition he puts out. From the beginning, the segment has been hilarious, and he's gotten a number of high-profile celebrities to read some really, really terrible things about themselves. Everyone from Emma Stone to John Krasinski to George Clooney has participated, so take a walk down memory lane with some of the funniest burns. »
Director Marc Webb's reboot of the Spider-Man film series has been a surprisingly polarizing topic among comic book fans and movie lovers. While 2012's The Amazing Spider-Man was well received and managed a respectable box office gross, some people were left scratching their heads at the idea of a reboot for a successful franchise happening barely a decade after the original series began. Still, Webb's direction and the solid performances by the film's cast -- with particular praise being leveled at Garfield as Peter Parker and Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy -- led to the inevitable sequel: this year's The Amazing Spider-Man 2. The second film, while featuring vibrant production design and another solid turn from its two leads, was less well...
- Chris Clow
In this fascinating feature, Anne Thompson recaps the making of "Unbroken" and concludes with a compelling Q&A with director Angelina Jolie who admitted, "What could be more fun than retracing the footsteps of somebody you really love and admire, and every day you learn from them? How do we shoot 47 days in a raft and move everybody in the raft? And then you're smiling to yourself thinking, 'How did they do this? Where did they sleep?' What a great challenge." Thompson on Hollywood -Break- Updated: Experts' Oscars predictions in 19 categories The regional critics groups awards announcments are coming in daily now. On Wednesday, the following result was revealed: Phoenix: "Birdman" for Picture, Director (Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu), Actor (Michael Keaton), Supporting Actress (Emma Stone); "Wild" for Actress (Reese Witherspoon); "Whiplash" for Supporting Actor (J.K. Simmons) »
Mike Leigh's J.M.W. Turner biopic, "Mr. Turner," topped the nominations for the London Film Critics Circle. The film about the English Romantic landscape painter, water-colourist, and printmaker played by Timothy Spall received 7 nods followed by Alejandro González Iñárritu's "Birdman" with 6. We'll find out the winners on January 18.
Here's the complete list of London Film Critics Circle nominees:
Film of the Year
"The Grand Budapest Hotel"
Foreign Language Film of the Year
"Norte, The End of History"
"Two Days, One Night"
British Film of the Year
Documentary of the Year
"20,000 Days on Earth"
Actor of the Year
Our resident VOD expert tells you what's new to rent and own this week on the various streaming services such as cable Movies On Demand, Amazon, iTunes, Vudu and, of course, Netflix. Cable Movies On Demand: Same-day-as-disc releases, older titles and pretheatrical exclusives for rent, priced from $3-$10, in 24- or 48-hour periods Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (action sequel; Andy Serkis, Jason Clarke, Gary Oldman, Keri Russell; rated PG-13) Magic in the Moonlight (comedy; Colin Firth, Emma Stone; rated PG-13) Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (action reboot; Megan Fox, Will Arnett; also available in 3D; rated PG-13) This Is Where I Leave You (comedy; Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, Jane Fonda; rated R) Escobar: Paradise Lost (action; Benicio Del Toro, Josh Hutcherson...
- Robert B. DeSalvo
Poor Emma Stone! The effervescent Cabaret star, 26, took a break from the Great White Way to chat with David Letterman in NYC on Monday, Dec. 15, but there was a little snafu in the beauty department. While posing outside the studio for photos, Stone, clad in a Michael Kors coat, modeled her porcelain skin—which was unfortunately smudged with superlight HD makeup on her nose and forehead! Her blushed cheeks and rust lip were undeniably on point, as was her sleek scarlet bob. But it was hard to [...] »
This year's Best Supporting Actress field has more or less firmed up. It seems Patricia Arquette and Meryl Streep are ahead of the pack and have been for weeks. Keira Knightley and Emma Stone are on somewhat solid ground, rounding out the four with the HFPA/Bfca/SAG trifecta. Jessica Chastain is obviously in the mix and we've already written about Tilda Swinton being in the thick of it (as well as about why Minnie Driver deserves to be in the thick of it). Naomi Watts has her SAG nod, but that will probably have to suffice. And so that seems to be the field. But you know who really should be in this conversation? Rene freakin' Russo, that's who. I've delighted in seeing the "Nightcrawler" star pop up on a few critics' nominations lists, and even win. But as Jake Gyllenhaal slowly works on cracking the Best Actor five, »
- Kristopher Tapley
The Houston Film Critics Society has announced nominations, and no surprise, the three-horse race for critical darling of the year led the way: "Birdman" with 10, "Boyhood" with seven and "The Grand Budapest Hotel" with six. They also throw in a Best Poster category and deign to chart the year's worst. Check out the full list of winners below, and remember to follow along at The Circuit. Best Picture "Birdman" "Boyhood" "The Grand Budapest Hotel" "Guardians of the Galaxy" "The Imitation Game" "Inherent Vice" "A Most Violent Year" "Nightcrawler" "Selma" "Whiplash" Best Director Alejandro González Iñárritu, "Birdman" Richard Linklater, "Boyhood" Wes Anderson, "The Grand Budapest Hotel" Paul Thomas Anderson, "Inherent Vice" Damien Chazelle, "Whiplash" Best Actor Benedict Cumberbatch, "The Imitation Game" Eddie Redmayne, "The Theory of Everything" Jake Gyllenhaal, "Nightcrawler" Michael Keaton, "Birdman" Tom Hardy, "Locke" Best Actress Essie Davis, "The Babadook" Felicity Jones, "The Theory of Everything" Julianne Moore, "Still Alice" Marion Cotillard, »
- Kristopher Tapley
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