In a year without any movies completely breaking away from the pack as an obvious Best Picture frontrunner, we head into Sunday’s Academy Awards with a sense of mystery surrounding most of the top awards.
It’s a bit of a shame the year’s best picture, The Master, didn’t even warrant a nomination, but such is the way it goes with challenging films from Paul Thomas Anderson. The year’s next best, Django Unchained, will have to be content with getting a nomination, which, given the content of the film, still is a bit surprising to me. Continue reading →
I love Jurassic Park. I feel like I need to get that out there right from the beginning. It’s a fantastic summer blockbuster, filled with an amazing sense of awe that would exist if we lived in a world re-inhabited by dinosaurs. Plus, it’s terribly suspenseful when it needs to be, as director Steven Spielberg revels in scaring his characters (and, by proxy, the audience) through T-Rex and velociraptor attacks.
Its sequel, however, is none of that. In fact, it’s pretty much the exact opposite, mostly in that where Jurassic Park is great, The Lost World: Jurassic Park is terrible. As in perhaps the worst big-budget movie I’ve ever seen. Sure, other films might actually be worse, but they aren’t directed by Spielberg, a living legend, winner of multiple Oscars and the most successfully commercial director of all time.
UPDATED: Dec. 28, 2012
A long time ago (or, actually, two years ago), I would make annual Best Of lists, usually for movies and music, and I loved doing it. I always wanted to include TV shows and books, but I often found myself unable to list 10, and since all good lists come in groups of 10, I would leave them off and be done with it.
Last year, though, I opted for an overarching list that included all things I loved about the year, so I’m now thinking that’s the way to go. Oddly enough, this year, I had a hard time narrowing my TV shows down to 10 – we really are in an amazing era of quality TV. Note: These aren’t necessarily listed in order of favorites or quality.
I tend to argue that they often get it wrong on the Best Picture winners, but even when they mess up, I find myself drawn to the allure of the award. Movies remain America’s grandest form of popular entertainment, making the Oscars, good or bad, a major draw. Continue reading →
When I decide to run for president, I’m running on one campaign platform and only one, mainly because it’s all I will need to destroy my opponent in a Reagan/Mondale-type fashion. My platform? Every five years, Hollywood will produce a new Police Academy movie featuring the top comedic stars of the time. Continue reading →
Toward the end of 2011, I began the process of converting all my existing DVDs into a digital format, partly to have everything available on a computer, mostly to free up space in my house.
I’m at about the halfway point of converting the films, but I’m now faced with a dilemma as I move toward my favorite titles/directors: Do I keep any hard copies of the movies from my favorite directors? There’s something about having the actual DVDs from Scorsese, Eastwood, Anderson (both P.T. and Wes), Tarantino, Spielberg and others that I find comforting.
UPDATED Jan. 17, 2012
I guess I need a better list.
The past few years, I have started January with a list of fun pop-culturey things to do in the following 12 months. The list can range from eating a one-pound hamburger to watching four movies in a theatre in one day (both of which I proudly accomplished).
UPDATED Jan. 4
In sitting down to pick my top movies/albums/etc. of the past year, I realized I would have a difficult time picking 10 in any particular category, which is kind of a key component in any top 10 list.
So, instead of the usual “best of” format, I’m going to borrow from Stephen King (who happens to be on this list) and include the things I loved in 2011. Other than being grouped by category with a No. 1 leading the way for each, they’ll be in no particular order.