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And the Oscar Goes to…Julianne Moore

December 19, 2014

 

This year, Oscar’s always-a-bridesmaid, Julianne Moore, goes for her fifth nomination. And among all of this year’s leading ladies, Moore seems to be a lock for her first—and much overdo—win. In fact, hers is one of the few categories that’s nearly a sure thing at this stage of the Oscar season. (Let’s hope I didn’t just jinx it.)

Playing a linguistics professor with early-onset Alzheimer’s, Moore’s performance in Still Alice is ripe for awards consideration, and, indeed, it has received several positive notices and recognition. Among her accolades, Moore has already won Best Actress from the Gotham Awards and National Board of Review, among others, and she counts a Golden Globe nomination (two, actually—the other for Maps to the Stars) and SAG Award nomination among her accolades.

Still Alice also stars Alec Baldwin, Kristen Stewart, and Kate Bosworth, and opens January 16. Oscar nominations will be announced the morning of January 15.

Jennifer Aniston’s “Other” Dramatic Role

December 5, 2014

On the eve of Jennifer Aniston’s dramatic turn in Cake, I thought it would be worth a trip back to 2002 to her previous against-type role in The Good Girl. Aniston plays a depressed, blue-collar, married woman who engages in an affair with a troubled, younger man (Jake Gyllenhaal). This was the first time I had seen Aniston in a dramatic role, and ever since seeing this I “ached” to see her break from her traditional rom-com inclinations and once again prove her versatility in a meaty indie film. We’ll get that later this month with Cake.

In the meantime, here’s a compilation of the scenes between Aniston and Gyllenhaal in The Good Girl.

Oscar Film Season: Movie Watching Checklist

November 21, 2014

Jack O’Connell in UNBROKEN (photo courtesy of Universal Pictures. © 2014. All rights reserved.)

If you’re anything like me, you make a point to watch as many “Oscar films” as possible before the February ceremony. To help me with this, I assemble a checklist of sorts every fall, ordering each film by release date. To that end, listed below are some of this year’s biggest prospects that are either currently in theatres or set to be released in the upcoming weeks. In the event that I’ve seen one of the films listed, I included my rating out of 10.

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Anatomy of a Short Film: Launching a Social Media Campaign

November 7, 2014

My latest entry in the “Anatomy of a Short Film” section of this blog is all about kicking off a social media campaign. This week, my partners and I launched the Facebook and Twitter accounts for our next short film, “In-Kind.” (Read more about our progress throughout all phases of production in “Anatomy of a Short Film.”)

Check out our film on Facebook and Twitter, and be sure to like and follow for regular updates about our progress and for great and easy tips on how you can be kind to others every day (a core theme of the film).

Official Trailer: Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper Reunite in SERENA

October 29, 2014

 

Directed by Oscar-winning Danish filmmaker Susanne Bier (In a Better World, 2010), Serena reunites Silver Linings Playbook players Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper.

Synopsis: North Carolina mountains at the end of the 1920s–George (Cooper) and Serena Pemberton (Lawrence), love-struck newly-weds, begin to build a timber empire. Serena soon proves herself to be equal to any man: overseeing loggers, hunting rattle snakes, even saving a man’s life in the wilderness. With power and influence now in their hands, the Pembertons refuse to let anyone stand in the way of their inflated love and ambitions. However, once Serena discovers George’s hidden past and faces an unchangeable fate of her own, the Pembertons’ passionate marriage begins to unravel, leading toward a dramatic reckoning.

Magnolia Pictures will release Serena on iTunes and VOD on February 26, and in theatres on March 27.

 

BOYHOOD Leads Gotham Independent Film Award Nominations

October 23, 2014

Ellar Coltrane in BOYHOOD

This morning, the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) announced the nominees for its 24th annual Gotham Independent Film Awards, honoring the best in independent cinema. The Gothams are regarded as the first major award show of the awards season. Richard Linklater’s 12-year odyssey, Boyhood, leads the pack with four nominations, including Best Feature.

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New York Film Festival Review: Foxcatcher

October 13, 2014

(Re-posted from LimitéMagazine.com)

Channing Tatum and Steve Carell in FOXCATCHER

Series: Main Slate

Haunting. There’s perhaps no better word to describe the true story of DuPont chemicals heir John E. du Pont and his curious relationship with Olympic champion wrestlers, brothers Mark and David Schultz. In filmmaker Bennett Miller’s third feature, Steve Carell plays against type (superbly) to embody the eccentric—if not mildly psychopathic—du Pont in this 1980s-set true story. To call Foxcatchera “sports movie” is providing it a disservice. Yes, wrestling provides more than just a backdrop for the narrative, but the most compelling aspect of the two-hour-plus drama is the character study it provides, especially among the three leads. These include du Pont, a man who’s perhaps never heard the word no in his life, striving to gain his mother’s approval; Mark (Channing Tatum), a man, who despite his champion status, struggles to step out of his older brother’s shadow; and David (Mark Ruffalo), a family man who must balance what’s best for his wife and children with his brotherly duties.

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