(This article is part of our Best of the Decade series.)
Narrowing down a top 10 list for one year is hard enough. An entire decade? It’s almost impossible. Almost. I hemmed and hawed my way through this task, debating with myself as to what titles would go where, and what titles would make the list at all. The bottom line: it was a great decade for film, and don’t let anyone claim otherwise. As of this moment, I am happy with this list. But check back in with me in a week – I may have changed my mind by then.
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We’re in the heart of awards season now, and hot on the heels of the 2020 Golden Globes nominations earlier this week, the Screen Actors Guild has announced the nominations for the annual awards honoring the best performances in film and television.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, The Irishman and Bombshell all came out a the top with four nominations a piece. On the television side, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel continues to be an awards sensation with four nominations as well. Read More »
We’re getting closer to the end of 2019, and that means the year-end lists delivering what critics think are the best movies of the year are starting to arrive. It’s a little early, especially since some of the movies appearing on lists haven’t hit theaters yet, but many critics have seen those movies in advance thanks to deadlines for voting bodies to determine their awards nominations. That brings us to film critic David Ehrlich‘s traditional video countdown of the Top 25 Movies of 2019. Did any of your favorites make the cut? Find out below. Read More »
Netflix is cagey when it comes to their viewership numbers, and they’ve previously stated they have no plans to release numbers for The Irishman, their new crime epic from Martin Scorsese. But thanks to ratings service Nielsen, we now have somewhat of an idea about how the movie did during its launch. Per their reporting, at least “17.1 million unique viewers” watched at least some of the film.
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(Welcome to Now Stream This, a column dedicated to the best movies streaming on Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and every other streaming service out there.)
Hello, streamers! The end of the year is almost upon us, and there’s a surprisingly great group of movies available to stream right this second. Since we’re now in full-blown holiday season mode, I included one or two Christmas-themed films to help get you in the spirit. Beyond that, you’ll find three of the best movies of this year, a Disney classic that’s only gotten better with age, some great Greta Gerwig content, and more. These are the best movies streaming right now. Let’s get streaming!
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Martin Scorsese is one of the greatest champions of the cinematic form, but he’s not averse to television. Over the past decade, he’s directed the pilots for and executive produced both Boardwalk Empire and Vinyl for HBO – but in a new interview, he says he never once thought about making The Irishman as a TV series. His new Netflix epic has raised eyebrows with its three-and-a-half-hour runtime, leading some to wonder if the story may have been better served as a limited series. But Scorsese is adamant that it could only have worked as a movie. Read More »
Where do you stream movies? The best possible choice would be a TV, but there are some people out there – lunatics, I call them – who stream movies and TV shows on their phones. The Irishman, Martin Scorsese‘s masterful epic, debuted on Netflix over the Thanksgiving holiday, and since it’s streaming, that means someone, somewhere, probably watched this nearly four-hour movie on their phone. As you might expect, Scorsese – a man who cherishes the cinematic experience – doesn’t love the idea of someone watching his latest movie on their phones. But he’s willing to make some exceptions.
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(Welcome to The Unpopular Opinion, a series where a writer goes to the defense of a much-maligned film or sets their sights on a movie seemingly beloved by all. In this edition: The Irishman is a regression on multiple fronts for director Martin Scorsese.)
In ancient Egypt, pharaohs would be entombed with everything they needed for the next life: all their treasures and their mummified cats and even their living servants. This was before someone had the bright idea that you could just make lifelike models of the servants and not have to bury people alive. Obviously, in this case, the models weren’t CG … but you get the point. The Irishman sees Martin Scorsese, our greatest living filmmaker — the Ramses II of cinema — nesting below his pyramid, snug in his bed of mob movie hits. At this point, Scorsese has nothing left to prove. He’s made his masterpieces. We can look on his mighty works, and rejoice.
In this one instance, I will not rejoice, because— like Peter Griffin assessing The Godfather — “I did not care for” The Irishman.
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Cool Posts From Around the Web:
The Irishman brings together Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, and Joe Pesci with director Martin Scorsese for the first (and probably last?) time, and that’s a big deal. These guys are all legends, and they’re also all well into their twilight years. The prospect of them coming together for one last hurrah is exciting, and it helps that The Irishman is one of the year’s best movies, too. A new The Irishman featurette highlights how crazy and cool it is to have all these actors together in a new Scorsese epic.
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Martin Scorsese’s sprawling new mob epic, The Irishman, opens with a tracking shot through a nursing home. We’re a long way from the Copacabana in Goodfellas, but that nightclub, too, makes an appearance later, and the shot in question here is still soundtracked by a golden oldie. “In the Still of the Night” takes the place of “Then He Kissed Me.” The camera glides past senior citizens with cane walkers to a place where a white-haired old man in tinted glasses sits, looking like a shadow of his former Casino self.
Scorsese’s nine-time feature film collaborator, Robert De Niro, plays Frank Sheeran, a war veteran turned trucker turned labor union official turned nostalgic wheelchair occupant who paints himself as a Mafia assassin in flashbacks. That’s not the only “painting” we’ll see him do, either. “When I was young, I thought house painters painted houses,” Sheeran says at the top of his voiceover. Hearing these words in this context, it’s not hard to think of Henry Hill in Goodfellas, narrating, “As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be a gangster.” In Sheeran’s world, it turns out painting houses entails splattering their walls red with people’s blood.
Without delving into spoilers beyond the opening shot, it’s enough to say that cinephiles versed in the visual language of Scorsese’s films will be able to pinpoint many such callbacks when The Irishman hits Netflix on November 27 (it’s playing in limited theatrical release right now). Among other things, the movie serves as the summation of cinema’s greatest director-and-actor collaboration. Critics have described it in almost oxymoronic terms, calling it “a bold and shattering epic of old age.” Beyond the hype lies a film about human frailty, with one foot in the grave and one foot in the almighty past.
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