4 items from 2014
Everyone's got an opinion when it comes to the Oscars, unfortunately most people's are negative, censored or ridiculous
Oscars predictions are to Los Angeles what political gossip is to Washington DC, and during the week of the Oscars it's pretty much impossible to walk down the street, let alone open a newspaper, without somebody giving you their tuppence on the matter. As with arseholes and opinions, everyone's got their own prediction but in the final days before the ceremony one verdict was becoming increasingly loud: Gravity will beat 12 Years a Slave to Best Picture. Why? Because a true story about slavery is, well, kind of a downer.
"For many, 12 Years a Slave is too hard to watch," declared a front page headline in the La Times above a story by the paper's film critic, Betsy Sharkey, suggesting audiences have shied away from the movie. But a brief glance at the »
- Hadley Freeman
If you're an Oscar stats geek, you should check out the new blog 1:37:1 which responded to the recent debate about whether or not the number of Oscar-nominated films is shrinking due to the expanded Best Picture field with lots of charts. It's fascinating but requires concentration. Then a follow up specifically looking at the acting categories.
All was lost this year for male actors without Best Picture heatThe most interesting finding in the second article is how enormously rare it is for an acting category to feature only performances from Best Picture nominated films. It's happened only 10 times in Oscar's entire 86 year history and 2 of those times were this year alone including, for the first time ever, in a supporting category. That's a disturbing development if you're of the opinion (and you should be) that great performances can happen anywhere including within movies that aren't otherwise popular or great. »
- NATHANIEL R
Surprise! As a side bar series to Anne Marie's brilliant "A Year With Kate" project, I present to you "Seasons of Bette". Together with Streep, who we talk about a lot, Katharine Hepburn and Bette Davis form the Holy Trinity of Oscar's Best Actress category, with 41 nominations and 9 statuettes between them. Streep is bound to have another big year in 2014 with The Homesman, The Giver and Into the Woods all arriving but we're finally giving the other two their due.
"Seasons of Bette" won't be a comprehensive film-by-film study like Anne Marie's (Bette made 80+ features and a ton of television so, uh, no.) but I will personally be visiting each of Bette's Oscar nominated star turns, as they come up within Kate's timeline. When Anne Marie pitted them against each other in her last episode, I realized that they'd only squared off four times at the Oscars but that I »
- NATHANIEL R
Yesterday’s announcement by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that the The Wizard of Oz will be celebrated at this year’s Oscars was met with widespread enthusiasm. After all, it’s one of Hollywood’s most beloved films, multiple generations have grown up singing its tunes, and it’s celebrating its 75th anniversary.
But The Wizard of Oz wasn’t the only classic movie to come out in 1939. That prolific Hollywood year also boasted Frank Capra’s Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, John Ford’s Stagecoach, Goodbye, Mr. Chips, Ninotchka (“Garbo laughs!”), Gunga Din, William Wyler »
- Jeff Labrecque
4 items from 2014
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