Leave it to Kate Winslet’s warmth, intelligence and sincerity to bring us out of the winter doldrums of January leftovers with Jason Reitman’s nuanced, keenly observed romantic drama Labor Day.
Spring Arts Preview
It’s time for the Golden Globe nominations, and with some of the more satellite awards pulling for early frontrunners (Gotham, Film Critics from New York, LA and Boston, etc.,) we’re starting to see some movie trends confirmed. Everyone loved 12 Years a Slave! Unsurprisingly! And Breaking Bad and Girls and Nebraska and American Hustle and Spike Jonze and Martin Scorcese movies that aren’t even out yet!
But there are some surprises…Brooklyn Nine-Nine, anyone? Rush? The Butler gets no love? Greta Gerwig for Frances Ha? That movie was great and all, but Lena Dunham is already representing the affected Brooklyn 20-something constituents with her Girls nominations, are you telling us that the portrayal of overly self-involved young women trying to “make it” in New York is going to start being a thing? Is already a thing?
See the full list of nominees below.
The Hunger Games (Gary Ross) March 23
Your children have been refreshing Fandango daily to see if tickets are available yet for the movie based on Suzanne Collins’ kiddie novels—think of them as Twilight, except with actual murder instead of benign vampirism. Games promises a chaste love triangle and lots of angst for the tween Read More
Roman Polanski’s Carnage, a brisk, 79-minute adaptation of the wildly successful play God of Carnage by Yasmina Reza, is a case of the right film by the wrong director. This one-set, four-character theater piece that kept audiences in stitches for long runs in London, Paris and on Broadway, is a giddy war of words and modern manners between a quartet of highly sophisticated, unspeakably duplicitous New Yorkers who thrust and parry on the front lines of the domestic battlefield to see who can draw more blood with the sharpest teeth and most insincere smile. It’s a slight but highly entertaining little morsel that leaves you laughing and thinking about how rotten apples never fall far from the tree, and it needs a director who knows how to move four people nimbly through a single living room in Brooklyn without claustrophobia. Mr. Polanski is a gimlet-eyed master craftsman, but comedy is not his forte.
It is often predicted that the world will no longer end with the whimper of a long, boring war, but with the scream of a fatal, incurable and fast-moving plague. Addressing that theme in time to scare the living daylights out of everybody, Contagion is a star-studded, apocalyptic wake-up call to the horrors that await mankind in a test tube. We’ve made so much progress in terms of immunology, technology, scientific research and medical miracles that the planet considers itself immune to everything from small pox to swine flu. But there’s still no cure for cancer or AIDS, and the canvas of new viruses gets broader every year. So the topicality in Contagion is dark and unquestionable, if not creepy and off-putting.
After lavishing Kate Winslet with praise and noting how adorably “edible” his tiniest cast member is, director Todd Haynes got emotional.
“This is a movie… about a mother,” Haynes said while introducing his new miniseries, Mildred Pierce (to debut on HBO March 27) at the Ziegfeld Theatre, “and tonight isn’t quite the same for me Read More
One of the very best films to come out in the last couple of years hits DVD today and you haven’t seen it. Why Revolutionary Road, Sam Mendes’ tragically beautiful adaptation of Richard Yates’ novel, failed to connect with moviegoers is a question that has many answers: In an era of hope, it was too Read More
Okay, yeaaah, the Oscars! It’s going to take us at least a few more days to really be able to digest all the absolute batsh*t craziness that went down during Sunday night’s telecast. Can we all just start by agreeing that that show was truly bonkersville? We know there will be plenty of ink shed Read More
My choice for Best Picture would be The Reader. I think it’s a magnificent film about little people with big experiences. It’s a movie that, at a time when movies are not about much of anything, is a very important Read More