17 items from 2013
Reader Takeover Day! The Reader Spotlight is coming back soon but as a special triple treat a few posts over the next 24 hours written by you, the reader. (Well, not you literally). Here is Lynn Lee -- previously reader spotlighted so you'll want to check that out -- who is currently on a tv/movie binge while on furlough.- Nathaniel
Lynn here, taking Nathaniel up on his kind invitation to recount the...
"Filmgoing Adventures of a Furloughed Federal Employee"
There's no question the ongoing federal government shutdown is a disaster for this country, and it's affected federal workers more directly than most. A good chunk of us, including yours truly, have been indefinitely furloughed. Those who think this just means extra vacation time clearly don't understand that (1) most of us *want* to be at work, but it's against the law for us to work and (2) we currently aren't getting paid! »
- GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
It’s that time of year again. Leaves are turning burnt orange, horror movies are confusingly not being released, and the Gop has threatened to shut down the government because they failed for the 54th time to stop a law that was passed three years ago. Only this time they actually followed through with the threat (go figure), and now none of us can enjoy the leaves at National Parks or watch Nasa launch stuff into orbit. Unsurprisingly, the concept of the government shutting down (or at least this version of a shut down) isn’t well represented in movies because of how breathtakingly uncinematic it is. When we want to see a political crisis on screen, we demand that Harrison Ford punch a terrorist off of Air Force One or Denzel Washington get brainwashed. That doesn’t stop films from tiptoeing around the periphery or taking a central role in this current freeze. Whether »
- Scott Beggs
Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is gearing up to celebrate the Academy Awards® in a very special way next year. As part of TCM’s annual 31 Days of Oscar® showcase in February 2014, the network will present the world premiere of Oscar, a brand-new documentary tracing the history of the Academy Awards. Produced by Telling Pictures, Inc., in association with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (The Academy) and Hollywood Newsreel, this fascinating special will take movie lovers on a journey through Hollywood history as it tells its story of the little statuette that became the industry’s most coveted prize.
Oscar is set to have its world television premiere on TCM Saturday, Feb. 1, the opening night of the 2014 edition of 31 Days of Oscar. With the new documentary as its centerpiece, 31 Days of Oscar will be themed around the history of the Academy Awards.
Featuring more than 300 Oscar-winning and nominated films, »
- Michelle McCue
As part of TCM’s annual 31 Days of Oscar® showcase in February 2014, the network will present the world premiere of Oscar, a brand-new documentary tracing the history of the Academy Awards. Produced by Telling Pictures, Inc., in association with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (The Academy) and Hollywood Newsreel, this fascinating special will take movie lovers on a journey through Hollywood history as it tells its story of the little statuette that became the industry’s most coveted prize. Oscar is set to have its world television premiere on TCM Saturday, Feb. 1, the opening night of the 2014 edition of 31 Days of Oscar. With the new documentary as its centerpiece, 31 Days of Oscar will be themed around the history of the Academy Awards. Featuring more than 300 Oscar-winning and nominated films, the month-long showcase will take a deep look into the world’s oldest, most important and most prestigious film award. »
- THE DEADLINE TEAM
Sometimes calculated, diplomatic, well-thought-out speech is the best way for someone to get a point across. Other moments, however, require yelling, finger-pointing, spittle-projecting and the type of language that would get you 50 Hail Marys in Sunday school.
Indeed, movie history has provided us with hundreds of instances where a character's unstoppable flood of emotions got the best of them. Luckily for you, we've narrowed them down to the fifteen best.
Warning: Most of these rants contain Nsfw language, as you might imagine.
The gist: Donnie was a good bowler, and Vietnam was a bitch.
It's hard to pick just one Walter Sobchak rant from "The Big Lebowski," considering almost every time he speaks is a rant and almost every one of his rants is memorable. But we'll go with the scattering of Donnie's ashes, which starts off as a »
- Adam D'Arpino
July has always been a favorite month for me. June kicks the summer off, but in July you realize you have an entire month of swimming, cookouts, milkshakes and (if you're me) watching summer flicks. It is also the birthday month of our lovely country, which leads me into our theme for this month.
I considered going the route of the "American Hero." I love a good action-hero flick as much as the next person, but I then considered what we really celebrate on the Fourth of July: everyday heroes. We celebrate the working American, those men and women who might not have had the best education but are fighting to earn their living. We think of those who stand for good, not because a job requires them to, but because they believe in what is right. Those who went from rags to riches, who saved every penny they earned, »
- Marcelena Mayhorn
Thomas Edison introduced the first Kinetoscope in 1891, meaning America has been making movies for more than half of its existence as a country. It makes sense, then, that over that time there have been at least a few rousing cinematic celebrations of the U.S. of A., and the 4th of July is as good a time as any to look back on some of Hollywood’s great patriotic panegyrics. Regardless of your thoughts on American exceptionalism, Americans have always been exceptionally good at telling you just how exceptional we think we are.
For example, there’s Bill Murray’s “We’re mutts! »
- Keith Staskiewicz
One of the most famous films that Jimmy Stewart ever had to stand to the point of exhaustion in was Frank Capra’s Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. Made almost a decade before his even more famous yet less senatorial It’s a Wonderful Life, the film tells the story of a small-town man who is appointed as a U.S. Senator to replace one that has suddenly died. Stewart stars as Jefferson Smith, an idealistic man who takes his new job almost too seriously. However, Smith’s wide-eyed wonder at the seat of government is soon rocked by political corruption and dirty dealings. Smith tries to arrange the use of public land for boy rangers in his home state, causing a problem for the building of a dam in the same area — a dam that’s a critical part of a bill being pursued by local tycoon and political heavy Jim Taylor (Edward Arnold) who has »
- Kevin Carr
Serious Film’s Michael C here. With the Fourth of July around the corner it’s a perfect time to examine a classic piece of Americana that has recently re-entered the national conversation.
Last week the movie on the front pages of America's newspapers wasn’t Man of Steel or World War Z. It was a 1939 Capra classic starring Jimmy Stewart. There wasn’t, alas, a nationwide burst of interest in cinema history. Rather, it was the story of Texas state senator Wendy Davis holding the floor in a dramatic 13-hour filibuster in opposition to a bill proposing draconian restrictions on abortion rights. Journalists had to reach back nearly three quarters of a century to the thrilling filibuster climax of Capra’s Mr. Smith Goes to Washington to capture the drama of the incident. Just as Capra's It’s a Wonderful Life is synonymous with sob-inducing Holiday sentiment, so too »
- Michael C.
Let’s establish one fact before we look at the wheels that Sen. John McCain just set in motion with his new bill to end cable channel bundling (read it here). It won’t pass. This isn’t Mr. Smith Goes To Washington. And two things have changed since 2006, the last time the Arizona Republican tried — and failed — to promote a la carte cable pricing. He’s no longer on the Commerce Committee which likely would have to move the legislation forward. What’s more, his new Television Consumer Freedom Act of 2013 has a provision that would strip licenses from broadcasters who move programming to pay TV as Fox, CBS, and Univision have threatened if they lose their court challenge to streaming service Aereo. The provision ensures that the broadcast lobby will join cable to do everything in their power to defeat McCain’s bill. The National Cable & Telecommunications Association has already weighed in. »
- DAVID LIEBERMAN, Executive Editor
The musician and film director, whose The Lords of Salem opens next month (His novelization of the movie is out now), on everything he watched, read, heard, and browsed for seven days. Friday, February 22 Watched: 7 a.m. CBS This Morning. 9:30 a.m. Project Runway. 11 a.m. The Andy Griffith Show. 2 p.m. Game six, first period, 1974 Stanley Cup Finals. “I’m writing a movie about the 1974 Philadelphia Flyers. I’ve been watching the same hockey game nonstop for weeks.” 3:30 p.m. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. “I try to watch a movie a day if possible, as a rule. If I’m watching Turner Classic Movies and they do a little tribute to Jimmy Cagney, next thing I’m watching twenty Jimmy Cagney movies in a row. I don’t know why I do that, but I always do that.” 6 p.m. Judge Judy. 6:30 p.m. Judge Judy. »
- Jennifer Vineyard
As “Oz: The Great and Powerful” becomes the year's first blockbuster, with hopes of making a dent in the upcoming awards race, let’s take a look back at the Oscar history of Hollywood’s most memorable adaptation of Frank L. Baum’s classic tale. -Insertgroups:12- “The Wizard of Oz” is one of the most beloved films of all time. Back in 1939, it was among the greatest lineup of Best Picture nominees ever assembled, contending against “Dark Victory,” “Gone with the Wind,” “Goodbye, Mr. Chips,” “Love Affair,” “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,” “Ninotchka,” “Of Mice and Men,” “Stagecoach” and “Wuthering Heights” for the top prize. In addition to Best Picture, “Oz” was nominated in five other categories: Best Color Cinematography,(Harold Rossen), Best Art Direction (Cedric »
Article by Dan Clark
We all have our good years and we all have our bad years. The same can be said for the Oscars. There are certain years that you look at the films chosen for Best Picture and wonder if they should have just cancelled the show. Then there are the years that are so jam packed with all time greats it’s nearly impossible to go wrong when choosing the winner. Those are the years that this blog will focus on. I looked through all the Best Picture Classes to determine the Best of the Best. Overall quality, influence, and longevity were all taken into account when constructing this list of the Top 10 Best Picture Classes of All Time.
10. Class of 1959
Best Picture Winner: Ben Hur »
Release date: Nov. 16, 2012
DVD release date: March 2013
Run time: 2 hour, 30 mins.
Box office: Opening wide weekend: $21.0 million; Total domestic box office: $173.6 million
Rotten Tomatoes score: 90 percent
Tweetable description: In the final days of the Civil War, Abe Lincoln marshals all his political skills to pass the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery forever.
What Owen said: “Lincoln brilliantly dramatizes the delicacy of politics, along with the raw brutality of it. All that’s pushing the amendment forward is Abe Lincoln’s will, his ability to do »
- Jeff Labrecque
Political films really ought to start coming with warning labels. For every Mr. Smith Goes To Washington or Wag The Dog, there's a Fahrenheit 9/11 or a 2016: Obama's America eager to sully the brand with didacticism, condescension, and a shocking lack of perspective. It is to that latter pile that we must unfortunately add Won't Back Down. Despite an appealing cast (Maggie Gyllenhaal, Viola Davis, Holly Hunter) and a hot-button subject, Back features a story that might be better served by a powerpoint presentation than a narrative film. Even when it's at its most cinematic, it never manages to bring any heat to an issue that could well change the face of American life.
- Anders Nelson
Politics is a dirty, mean-spirited, no-good business, and even the purest of souls who enter come out the other end tainted by the unavoidable compromises necessary to survive the experience. This comes as news to no one of course, least of all the filmmakers behind the new film Knife Fight… but that doesn’t mean they fully agree with it. Paul Turner (Rob Lowe) is a campaign manager happily saddled with the nickname “The Master of Disaster.” When politicians are discovered in bed with a dead girl, a live boy or a quadriplegic orangutang Turner and his assistant Kerstin (Jamie Chung) are the ones they rely on to spin things back in their favor. His current slate includes an infidelity-prone Kentucky governor (Eric McCormack) in a tight re-election race and a California Senator (David Harbour) accused of sexual impropriety during a massage. Also begging for his assistance is a Mission District doctor (Carrie-Ann Moss) who’s decided »
- Rob Hunter
Our countdown is in the home-stretch, with part 28 out of 30 in our list of the 300 Greatest Films Ever Made. These are numbers 30-21.
28) Singing In The Rain (1952) Gene Kelly USA
Numbers 20-11 coming up next.
film cultureClassicslist300 »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Rob Young)
17 items from 2013
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