7 items from 2010
The Jazz Singer is getting some rock recognition. Neil Diamond—yes, that Neil Diamond—is atop today's list of first-time nominees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, alongside the likes of Bon Jovi and Alice Cooper. We get Bon Jovi, with the '80s hair and riff-driven hits like "Livin' On a Prayer," "You Give Love a Bad Name," and "Wanted Dead or Alive." And Cooper was the original shock-rocker, with his bad mascara and parent-scaring cuts "School's Out" and "No More Mr. Nice Guy." But the guy who sings "Sweet Caroline?" What kind of rock cred does he have? Plenty, it turns out. While Diamond might be best known for his »
Historians of the Oscars will remember the 2010 celebrations as the year that a possible scenario for a screwball Hollywood comedy became actual when a former husband and wife – James Cameron and Kathryn Bigelow – went head to head for the big prize.
However, what will be remembered forever as the cinematic milestone of 2009 is that a week before Christmas an American film called Avatar opened in cinemas from Chicago to China and by the end of January had taken billions of dollars at the box office, becoming the most profitable movie ever made. Moreover, its commercial success established beyond doubt that audiences throughout the world are in thrall to special effects, that they're as ready to accept computer-generated creatures as they are human beings, and that these fantasy figures don't need to speak any known language.
And contrary to the views of superior critics and the advice of concerned oculists, these »
- Philip French
There are the classic films we've never seen (that we confess to on Twitter on #fessupfriday), and then there are the movies we just keep meaning to see and for whatever reason just keep putting off. The former might include titles we never expect to see nor desire to put any effort into seeing. (I'll likely never feel the need to see either Doctor Zhivago in its entirety or The Jazz Singer at all, even for historical purpose.) The latter are those films in our Netflix queue that might remain in a position between #5 and #10 for years, but which will never make it up into the top five due to being sidelined for other more preferred titles (usually new releases).
- Christopher Campbell
AFI's 100 Years...100 Movie QuotesGone with the Wind (1939)
The Godfather (1972)
"I'm going to make him an offer he can't refuse." --Marlon Brando as Don Corleone.
On the Waterfront (1954)
"You don't understand! »
Next month marks the centenary of In Old California, a 17-minute adventure yarn directed by Dw Griffith and the first Hollywood production. Philip French records the changes in film and Us society in the past century, and names the films that defined each decade
1910-1919: The birth of Hollywood
According to Hollywood myth, the first film made there was Cecil B DeMille's The Squaw Man in 1914, after the director decided not to alight in a snowbound Flagstaff, Arizona, but to proceed to Los Angeles. In fact, four years earlier the prolific Dw Griffith had come west to take advantage of the California sunshine, and the 17-minute In Old California, an adventure set in Spanish colonial days, was the first to be filmed in its entirety in the village of Hollywood. Now commemorated by a monument at 1713 Vine Street, it was released on 10 March 1910, one of Griffith's 98 films of that year. »
- Philip French
Now that Avatar is the second-highest-grossing film of all time, 3D is finally confirmed as the future of movies. In a way, it's as if The Jazz Singer hadn't really harked the arrival of talkies and instead it took until Frankenstein arrived four years later to prove converting to sound was truly worth it. Anyway, just as films in production in the late 1920s were quickly turned into talkies, this year we keep hearing word of upcoming blockbusters being turned into 3D releases. For example, The Sunday Times is certain Ridley Scott's Robin Hood will indeed be available, as rumored, in both 3D and 2D versions when it opens this May (Update: Universal says the Times is incorrect in this information).
The Times additionally reports on what we've been expecting for years now, that theatrical favorites like Star Wars and Lord of the Rings will now definitely receive 3D-version re-releases. »
- Christopher Campbell
With vinyl making a comeback and almost every franchise from the 1980s finding its way to remakesville, one has to give credit to Magnet Releasing, the studio behind the sleeper, spookfest of 2009, The House of The Devil. Not only does The House of The Devil look like an '80s film. From the opening credits which have a pulsating soundtrack behind them, to the film's measured pace, to the clothes the characters wear and even the film's one sheet!The House of The Devil doesn't just look like an '80s film... it is an '80s film. Now, to beat the drum for this movie and the decade that spawned it even more... Magnet has seen fit to send us the movie on VHS. Yes, you read that right. So it seems that in this day and age when everything from The Jazz Singer is going to be redone in 3D, »
7 items from 2010
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