2018 DGA Nominees DIscussion

The Director’s Guild Of America awards have already been handed out, giving Guillermo del Toro one of several major victories on his path to potentially (and seemingly likely) winning Best Director at the Academy Awards. But before the awards took place, all of the DGA nominees got together for an extensive conversation about their filmmaking process and more.

At the Director’s Guild of America’s Los Angeles Theater on February 3, 2018, Guillermo del Toro (The Shape of Water), Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird), Martin McDonagh (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), Christopher Nolan (Dunkirk), and Jordan Peele (Get Out) all sat down for a three-hour conversation for the annual Meet the Nominees symposium.

Watch the 2018 DGA nominees discussion below. Read More »

lady bird 3

Lady Bird is a big deal. It’s one of the best-reviewed films of all time, is raking in major awards nominations and wins (like its recent Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Musical/Comedy), has no shortage of famous fans (Stephen Colbert called it one of the best movies he’s ever seen), and has made writer/director Greta Gerwig the figurehead of a movement to better-respect female filmmakers and storytellers. Awards season hype is often prone to hyperbole, but in the case of Lady Bird – a film so soft, quaint, and realized – the praise doesn’t feel like too much. It feels exactly right, if somewhat surprising.

Why is that? I’ve been wondering since I saw the film in early autumn why Lady Bird is so magnetically and universally appealing. Perhaps it’s the relatable aspects: it’s hard to find a woman who doesn’t connect with it in some way, whether it’s through the titular Lady Bird’s idiosyncrasies, her relationship with her mother (played with devastating accuracy by the great Laurie Metcalf), or in Sacramento’s class dynamics. But that’s all surface-level. There are deeper-layer elements of Lady Bird that make a film that, in other years, would be written off as light teenage girl fare rather than a major awards contender.

Here are some of the reasons Lady Bird has transcended its teen genre to become one of the most instantly beloved films in recent years.

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Lady Bird Featurette - Greta Gerwig

Lady Bird is one of the major awards contenders this season, and it will likely end up with a Best Picture nomination when all is said and done. The real question is whether the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will be smart enough to give Greta Gerwig a nomination for Best Director.

So far, plenty of awards programs have left Greta Gerwig out in the wind, with the Directors Guild of America being the only major award outlet to recognize her talent with a nomination. But if there’s any doubt that Gerwig should be included among the likes of other probable nominees like Guillermo del Toro and Christopher Nolan, a new Lady Bird featurette that focuses on what she brought to the table as a director should change anyone’s mind. Read More »

2018 Critics Choice Awards Winners

Even though there appears to be a growing rift between critics and audiences, ridiculously and confusingly perpetuated by Rotten Tomatoes of all places, there are plenty who are still interested in what the critics have to say and understand the value they bring to the entertainment world.

Last night, the critics named what they thought were the crowning achievements in film and television with the 2018 Critics Choice Awards. On the film side, The Shape of Water and Guillermo del Toro came out on top, winning both Best Director and Best Motion Picture Drama. In television, The Handmaid’s Tale was named the Best Drama Series while Amazon made waves again with The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel as Best Comedy Series.

Get the full list of 2018 Critics Choice Awards winners below. Read More »

Lady Bird - 2018 DGA Awards Nominations

Following this week’s announcement of the BAFTA nominations, the Director’s Guild of America is next in line to reveal their nominations for the best achievement in directing from the previous year in cinema for their 70th annual awards ceremony.

The 2018 DGA Awards nominations were announced today, and Lady Bird fans will be happy to see that director Greta Gerwig has finally been given her due diligence by landing a nomination. Furthermore, Get Out director Jordan Peele has landed two nominations, one in the primary outstanding directorial achievement award and one for being a first-time director.

Get the full list of 2018 DGA Awards nominations below. Read More »

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Wonder Woman - 2018 PGA Awards Nominees

Awards season is in full swing, and today we have the Producers Guild of America announcing their nominations for the annual PGA Awards. This is one of those awards that is a good indicator of how the Academy Awards nominations are going to fall when the time comes, so a certain comic book movie getting a nomination is kind of a big deal.

The 2018 PGA nominees include the standard awards season favorites like Get Out, The Post, Lady Bird, and Call Me By Your Name. But due to a tie, the full list also features 11 total nominees, which has allowed Wonder Woman to come away with one of the nominations. Find out the rest of the nominees below. Read More »

2018 WGA nominees

At this point in awards season, we’re starting to see the same few movies pop up over and over again. Films like Call Me By Your Name, Get Out, and Lady Bird have been mainstays on the awards circuit so far, but one of the movies we haven’t seen make much of a splash for voting bodies is Logan, 2017’s superhero swan song for Wolverine. But the Writers Guild of America has taken note and nominated Logan (along with the other films mentioned above, and a handful of others) for the chance to win the best screenplay of 2017. Read the full list of nominees below.
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Dunkirk - 2018 ACE Eddie Award Nominations

Even though we’re now officially into 2018, awards season continues in Hollywood. The Golden Globes are coming up this weekend and now the various guilds and organizations that represent the talented people who work behind the scenes of your favorite movies are putting forth the nominations for their own awards.

Today, it’s the American Cinema Editors announcing the nominees for their 68th ACE Eddie Awards. Like the Golden Globes, the ACE Eddie Awards divide the motion picture categories up into “dramatic” and “comedy,” which means Get Out is again strangely regarded as a comedy. Other nominees across the movie board include Dunkirk, Baby Driver and The LEGO Batman Movie. Meanwhile, television nominees include Portlandia, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Better Call Saul, Game of Thrones and more.

Check out the full list of the 2018 ACE Eddie Award nominations below. Read More »

Hoai-Tran Bui’s Top 10 Movies of 2017

ht top 10 movies of 2017

2017 was a rough year. As British comedian David Mitchell recently put it, the year was “personally adequate and internationally disastrous.” But there was one saving grace for me this year: movies.

And I had quite a catalogue to choose from. 2017 offered one of the richest and most diverse offerings of films we’ve seen in recent years, with blockbusters daring to dream beyond their big-budget formulas and major films going in wildly audacious directions. Some films excited, horrified, and profoundly affected me. But the movies that made my top 10 most sometimes did all three.

Before we dive in, my honorable mentions go to The Breadwinner, Columbus, Good Time, Coco, Logan, It Comes At Night, The Big Sick, The Beguiled, Baby Driver, and Thelma. Now, onto the list.

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2017 character actors

While 2017 has, overall, been a tire fire of a year, it has also been a largely rewarding year for cinema. (It should go without saying, but every year is rewarding for cinema.) Though there have been thematic throughlines in unexpectedly similar films, and unavoidable, sometimes unintentional parallels to real-world events, 2017 in film has been the year of the ubiquitous character actor.

In a strange coincidence (or just a sign of taste from various filmmakers), a handful of character actors have not only appeared in a number of the year’s most notable films, but they’ve each appeared in movies that may well end up with Oscar nominations aplenty next month. Let’s look at four character actors who seemingly showed up in every movie released in 2017: Caleb Landry Jones, Michael Stuhlbarg, Tracy Letts, and Bradley Whitford.

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