5 items from 2015
All week long our writers will debate: Which was the greatest film year of the past half century. Click here for a complete list of our essays. How to decide in the grand scheme of things which film year stands above all others? History gives us no clear methodology to unravel this thorny but extremely important question. Is it the year with the highest average score of movies? So a year that averages out to a B + might be the winner over a field strewn with B’s, despite a few A +’s. Or do a few masterpieces lift up a year so far that whatever else happened beyond those three or four films is of no consequence? Both measures are worthy, and the winner by either of those would certainly be a year not to be sneezed at. But I contend the only true measure of a year’s »
- Richard Rushfield
Today, Clive Barker’s wildly imaginative Nightbreed celebrates its 25th anniversary. While that is a remarkable feat in itself, the journey that the film has taken over the years has become the project’s enduring legacy within the horror genre. The recent Director’s Cut release of Nightbreed has been the ultimate vindication for Barker, who saw his vision snapped away decades ago from producers who believed they understood the world of Midian- and all its monsters- better than their creator.
Of course, that wasn’t the case, as Nightbreed received a disastrous response when it arrived in theaters, maligned mostly for its lack of subtlety and nuanced storytelling that was found within the pages of Barker’s original novella, Cabal. When Barker decided to move forward on adapting his work for the big screen, he was quick to rely on his some of his very closest friends to bring »
- Heather Wixson
New York film publicist Marion Billings, who worked with some of the most prominent directors and actors in Hollywood, died Sunday at the Lillian Booth Actors Home in Englewood, N.J. She was 91.
While working with young directors including Martin Scorsese, Oliver Stone and Paul Mazursky, and helping foreign directors like Ingmar Bergman and Milos Forman reach American audiences, Billings publicized films including “Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore,” “Taxi Driver,” “Raging Bull,” “The Last Temptation of Christ,” “Goodfellas,” “Wall Street,” “Born on the Fourth of July,” “Kramer vs. Kramer” and “Fatal Attraction.”
Scorsese said in a statement Wednesday: “Marion Billings was one of the last of the old guard of publicists. It was never just business with Marion. Her clients all adored her, and I’m proud to say that I was one of them for many years. We started working together at the very beginning of my career, »
- Kevin Noonan
Moviegoers can finally enjoy a film with a genuine hero who served his country and fought in a righteous war
The New England Patriots spent this past weekend earning a spot in the Super Bowl. But many more patriots went to the movies and propelled “American Sniper” to a record-setting January box office weekend.
In doing so, they officially declared war against the likes of Michael Moore, Seth Rogen and so many liberal, peace loving, pot-smoking A-listers and Hollywood suits who, since the 1970s, have had an ambivalent, if not disdainful relationship with war movies in general, and American patriotism in particular. »
- Thane Rosenbaum
By Anjelica Oswald
With Michael Keaton winning the Golden Globe for best actor in a musical or comedy and Eddie Redmayne winning for best actor in a drama, both men continue establishing themselves as the frontrunners in this year’s lead actor race at the Oscars.
Though not new to films, Redmayne starred in Oscar-nominated films such as Elizabeth: The Golden Age (2008) and Les Miserables (2012). His performance as Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything, however, propelled him to widespread acclaim and put him on the radar. He is one of four best actor nominees — along with Keaton, Benedict Cumberbatch and Steve Carell — to receive their first nomination this year.
For most of his career, Keaton was known for his comedic roles, such as Mr. Mom (1983) and Beetlejuice (1988), and for his turn as Batman in Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) and Batman Returns (1992). These roles earned Keaton praise and »
- Anjelica Oswald
5 items from 2015
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