(Welcome to 21st Century Spielberg, an ongoing column and podcast that examines the challenging, sometimes misunderstood 21st-century filmography of one of our greatest living filmmakers, Steven Spielberg. In this edition: Bridge of Spies and The Post.)
The Spielbergian hero is someone who not only does the right thing, but goes above and beyond. Someone who risks it all – life, limb, and reputation – for the greater good. And not some wispy, intangible greater good, either – oh, no. It’s not the belief in a better world; it’s the belief that the world we already have is as good as it’s going to get, if only we allow it. Spielbergian America is a place where the power is in the hands of the people, and all the people need do to make the country live up to its lofty goals is to fight for what’s right, no matter how daunting the fight may be. Two of Steven Spielberg‘s 21st-century films personify this perfectly, and, coincidentally enough, both star Tom Hanks: Bridge of Spies and The Post.
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Posted on Monday, February 29th, 2016 by Jacob Hall
In many cases, the 2016 Academy Awards played out as many pundits predicted. Leonardo DiCaprio finally took home an Oscar. Alejandro González Iñárritu won his second Best Director statuette in as many years. The Big Short and Spotlight snatched up the screenplay awards. Brie Larson and Alicia Vikander walked away with acting trophies. If you went to Vegas and put your money where the awards season pros told you to put it, you had a fairly solid night.
But the craziest and most contentious Oscars in years still had its fair share of snubs and surprises. Surefire winners stayed in their seats while dark horses took the stage. Small films came out of nowhere to win awards over gigantic competition. A genuinely bad song managed to win its category over a bunch of other mostly bad songs. The winner of Best Picture only won one other award. And through it all, Mad Max: Fury Road rode shiny and chrome, picking up more honors than any other film.
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Posted on Thursday, February 25th, 2016 by Jacob Hall
The 88th annual Academy Awards are this Sunday and this looks to be one of the most contentious ceremonies in years. There are no clear frontrunners in more than a few categories and many of the major nominees have as many detractors as they do boosters. For those who take an interest in awards season, it’s a rollercoaster. A glorious, insane, and frequently infuriating rollercoaster.
And while we here at /Film are not professional awards prognosticators, we are going to dive into this race head-on like the spirited amateurs that we are. We have put aside what we want to win and and have started focusing on what we think will win (which is easier said than done, because we’re team Mad Mad: Fury Road around these parts). We’re going to predict this year’s winners – and whoever gets the most right is going to win a shiny non-prize.
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For those who follow and obsess over the Hollywood awards season, the British Academy Film Awards are often a breath of fresh air. Or a surprising curveball. A bucket of water to face. Seeing how the film tastes across the Atlantic diverge and converge with American opinions is often fascinating. Plus, the BAFTAs set aside a few categories to focus exclusively on British films and filmmakers, which always allows for some very interesting, very surprising films to step into the spotlight.
And this year’s nominations pretty good! While many of the nominations align with the current Oscar buzz, there are just enough surprises to make this interesting. You can peruse the complete list of the 2016 BAFTA nominations below.
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Posted on Wednesday, January 6th, 2016 by Angie Han
The long, exhausting journey through awards season continues today, as the Writers Guild of America announce their nominations for their 2016 honors. As it turns out, they like a lot of the same things the Producers Guild and the Screen Actors Guild do, namely Spotlight, The Big Short, and Straight Outta Compton. They are, however, the only one of the three guilds to put Trainwreck in the race. Read the list of 2016 WGA Awards nominations after the jump. Read More »
It’s often the case that a year after writing a top 10, I’m sometimes filled with regret. “How did I forget to include that movie?” is a question that’s bound to arise every once in a while. Twelve months after writing one of these lists, you know which movies have genuinely stuck with you. Thankfully, most of of my choices from past “best” lists have over the years.
This year, I’m confident all of these films will not fade with time. 2015 was filled with movies I’ve already had the urge to revisit, and I was delighted to find they haven’t lost their power on repeat viewings. After the jump, help me count down my top 10 movies of 2015.
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Posted on Tuesday, January 5th, 2016 by Angie Han
There are years when the awards race feels all but locked in by early January, when even the most casual Oscar followers can rattle off a list of frontrunners and the ceremonies themselves promise few surprises. This is not one of those years. True, there are a few titles that you can safely bet on making it to the final cut, like Spotlight and The Revenant. But there are a great many films still on the bubble. Some of them got good news today, as the PGA announced their nominations for the 2016 awards, and others just saw their odds get a little bit longer. Read the full PGA Awards nominations 2016 list after the jump. Read More »
Posted on Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015 by Jacob Hall
As we wade deeper and deeper into the 2015 awards season, one thing has become increasingly clear: there are almost no frontrunners in any category. A number of “sure thing” predictions from a few months ago, like Leonardo DiCaprio finally taking home an Oscar statuette for The Revenant, now feel a little more embattled. So far, the early awards from various groups of critics have reflected this. The only movie practically guaranteed to win an Academy Award early next year is Inside Out (and even Pixar has some serious competition).
In the meantime, all we can do is grab our popcorn and watch the accolades land where they land. In the case of the New York Film Critics Circle, most of those accolades have landed on Todd Haynes‘ rapturously reviewed drama, Carol. Hit the jump for the complete list of winners from the 2015 NYFCC awards.
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Thanks to the magic of Thanksgiving, this week is a little shorter than all the rest, leaving us free to stuff our faces full of turkey and enjoy plenty of good movies. And since it’s a holiday weekend, you’ll probably be looking to escape the house for a few hours just so you don’t have to hear your family argue about politics. Or maybe you want to get everyone out of the house so you can enjoy a movie as a family.
Well, we’ve got you covered for a variety of cinematic occasions with a list of 28 movies to watch this Thanksgiving, and some of them you can even enjoy from the comfort of your own home. Read More »
In case you haven’t heard, late last night, Paris was hit hard by a series of coordinated terrorist attacks that have left at least 127 dead. Explosions, shootings and a hostage situation at a concert hall have left the City of Lights shaken, and the aftermath of these events will be felt for a long time.
So out of respect for those mourning and because of the shock from these attacks, the entertainment industry is responding with some cancellations of events that were to take place in Paris over the next few days, including a live U2 concert that was to air on HBO. In addition, major movie theater chains and arthouse cinemas are closing for the day as well. Get all the details below. Read More »