HUGO Blu-ray Review

by     Posted 2 years, 48 days ago

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Martin Scorsese loves movies. You don’t even have to watch Scorsese’s films to know that he’s as movie mad as they come, it’s part of what defines him as a human being. Where Quentin Tarantino has made himself the king of cinema from 1970 on, Scorsese’s love seems to cover the entirety of cinema. And to enjoy Hugo, his love letter to early cinema, it probably helps to be a little movie mad yourself. Asa Butterfield, Ben Kingsley, Chloe Grace Moretz, and Sacha Baron Cohen star in Hugo, and our review of the Blu-ray follows after the jump.

Saturn Award Nominations Announced; HUGO and HARRY POTTER Lead with 10 Nominations Each

by     Posted 2 years, 53 days ago

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Now that the Oscars are finally over, the Saturn Awards have come along and graced with nominations that are actually fun/infuriating-in-their-own-way.  There’s some cross-over between Oscars and Saturn Awards this year with Hugo racking up 10 nominations.  But since the Academy doesn’t want to recognize genre movies, they ignored Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2.  The Saturns are giving Mr. Potter his due, and the final chapter of the saga also nabbed 10 nominations.  Also doing well on the film side were Super 8 (8 nominations), Captain America: The First Avenger (7 nominations), The Adventures of Tintin and Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (6 nominations each).  As for TV, Breaking Bad led with six nominations.  I can live with all of these (although eight nominations for Super 8 is pushing it).

Wait.  I just saw that there were no nominations for Drive.  Never mind.  The Saturn Awards are sham.  Hit the jump for the full list of nominees.  Winners will be announced on June 20th (a long ways off, but meant to hit in the heart of the summer movie season).

Winners of the 84th Academy Awards; THE ARTIST Wins 5 Including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor

by     Posted 2 years, 56 days ago

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The Oscars are finally over.  The front-runner, The Artist, won the awards race by picking up Best Picture, Best Director (Michael Hazanavicius), Best Actor (Jean Dujardin), Best Costume Design, and Best Score.  There were also some big upsets as “locks” like The Tree of Life for Best Cinematography and Rise of the Planet of the Apes for Best Visual Effects were no match for Hugo, which ended up taking those categories and three more (Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, and Art Direction).  As for nice surprises…not really (unless you loved Hugo).

It was a forgettable year for the Oscars, and Billy Crystal, turning in his safe, predictable, and family-friendly routine was the perfect fit for a year that screamed “Don’t rock the boat!”  Last year’s Oscars took a chance on pairing Anne Hathaway and James Franco, and the show was a mess.  This year, they played it safe and the ceremony was still dull.  Quite simply, there was no films to root for and the “upsets” were for the establishment.  It was also funny to have the show and actors celebrate the theater when audiences are moving to OnDemand services, and studios are trying to make the theatrical release window even shorter.   Hit the jump for a full list of the winners, click here for mine and Adam Chitwood’s Oscar predictions (he did way better than me), and click here for my live-blog of the ceremony.

Mondo Kicks Off Academy Awards Series with Posters for HUGO and RANGO

by     Posted 2 years, 65 days ago

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We cover Mondo quite a bit here at Collider, the reason being that they create really, really, really cool posters, and today the collectible boutique arm of the Alamo Drafthouse announced a series of posters to coincide with this year’s Academy Awards. Mondo will be releasing limited prints of four of their favorite nominated films from 2011, and they’re kicking things off with Martin Scorsese’s lovely ode to cinema, Hugo and Gore Verbinski’s stellar and quirky Rango. I’m a huge fan of both movies, and these Mondo posters capture the essence of each film perfectly. The two other posters in the series will be announced next week, but today you can take a look at Hugo by artist Kevin Tong and Rango by artist Tom Whalen.

Hit the jump to check out the posters for Best Picture Nominee Hugo and Best Animated Feature nominee Rango. All four posters will go on sale during the Academy Awards on Sunday, February 26th. As always, follow @MondoNews for on sale announcements.

THE ARTIST Takes Homes Seven BAFTAs Including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actor

by     Posted 2 years, 70 days ago

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I’m really hoping for some surprises on Oscar night if only to make things interesting, but it’s looking less likely every day. Last night The Artist nearly swept the British Academy Film Awards (essentially the British Oscars), taking home the prizes for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Original Screenplay, Best Music, Best Cinematography, and Best Costume Design. Meryl Streep was named Best Actress for The Iron Lady, while Octavia Spencer and Christopher Plummer won Best Supporting Actress and Actor. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy wasn’t sent home empty-handed, as the spy thriller won Best British Film and Best Adapted Screenplay. I was happy to see Senna get some well-deserved recognition, as the Formula 1 doc chronicling the life of driver Ayrton Senna was named Best Documentary.

While George Clooney seemed the favorite in the Best Actor Oscar race for his magnificent turn in The Descendants, The Artist’s Jean Dujardin could easily prove the spoiler. With the SAG Award in hand and now the BAFTA, the French comedian may very well step up to the podium come Oscar night. Hit the jump to see the full list of BAFTA winners. The Academy Awards will be handed out on February 26th.

New Featurette Goes Behind the Scenes of “The Magic of HUGO”

by     Posted 2 years, 76 days ago

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If I had a say in the Best Picture race, my vote would go to Hugo.  Though the The Tree of Life was just as gorgeous, and The Descendants matched the emotional satisfaction, no other nominee brought together all the cinematic elements with such exquisite skill.  Paramount has released a new featurette that highlights all the work that went into crafting Hugo, discussing the importance of the story, sets, visual effects, score, makeup, costumes, lighting, and especially the historical inspiration in a brisk 6 minutes.  The featurette is appropriately titled “The Magic of Hugo,” and features interview clips with director Martin Scorsese, his longtime editor Thelma Schoonmaker, screenwriter John Logan, producer Graham King, and star Ben Kingsley.  Hit the jump to watch, especially if you are an Oscar voter.

2012 Oscar Nominations Announced; HUGO and THE ARTIST Lead the Pack

by     Posted 2 years, 89 days ago

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The nominations for the 84th Annual Academy Awards have finally been unveiled. Many of the categories have fallen in line just as most have predicted (I fared alright with my predictions, but not great), with Hugo scoring 11 nods, followed closely by The Artist with 10. The biggest surprises are War Horse and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close getting in for Best Picture, the exclusion of The Adventures of Tintin from Best Animated Feature, and The Tree of Life nabbing Best Picture and Best Director nods (hooray!). On the snub side of things, despite landing the most precursor critics awards of any other actor in the race thus far, Albert Brooks was denied a Best Supporting Actor nod for his stellar work in Drive (boo). Additionally, Tilda Swinton was overlooked for giving the best performance of the year in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and AMPAS has no love for Michael Fassbender‘s haunting work in Shame.

There’s still plenty to be happy about, as Gary Oldman has his first ever Oscar Nomination (yes, that’s right) and Melissa McCarthy is a Best Supporting Actress nominee. Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominees. The 84th Academy Awards will be presented by Billy Crystal on February 26th.

Oscars 2012: Adam Predicts the Nominees

by     Posted 2 years, 92 days ago

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As I’ve been covering awards season pretty extensively here on the site over the past few months, I figured it would be appropriate to (foolishly) try to predict the upcoming Oscar nominations. It’s been a fairly tame year, as a few frontrunners were singled out early in the race and have held their ground throughout the grueling awards season. We haven’t been without a few surprises, as Steven Spielberg’s War Horse took a massive tumble following snubs from most of the major guilds, and David Fincher has surged back into the race bringing his adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo with him.

Though there are plenty of safe bets when it comes to the 2012 Oscar nominations, there are still a few wildcards and tricky categories. I’ve put on my prognosticating cap (those interested can purchase one of these nifty hats at your local Target) and compiled a list of who and what I think will make the cut. Hit the jump to see how I think the nods will stack up when they’re announced on January 24th.

X-MEN: FIRST CLASS, THOR, and HUGO Among Costume Designers Guild Nominees

by     Posted 2 years, 94 days ago

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Though many are busy finalizing their predictions for the Best Actor and Best Picture Oscar categories, the Costume Designers Guild today announced nominees for excellence in wardrobe. The nods are split into three categories: contemporary, fantasy, and period. Among the films singled out are superhero fare like X-Men: First Class and Thor, blockbusters franchises Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, and dramatic critical favorites like Drive and The Descendants. Personally, I’m thrilled to see the excellent work in X-Men: First Class singled out, and I’m still waiting for a reasonably priced way to own Ryan Gosling’s ridiculously cool jacket from Drive.

Hit the jump to see the full list of nominees. The winners will be announced on February 21st, and the nominees for the upcoming 84th Annual Academy Awards will be revealed this coming Tuesday, January 24th.

TINKER TAILOR SOLDIER SPY, HUGO, and THE ARTIST Lead 2012 BAFTA Nominations

by     Posted 2 years, 96 days ago

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If you’re in a position to give out prestigious awards, chances are you’re partial to The Artist.  The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) handed out their nominations for 2011′s best films, and leading the pack was Michael Hazanavicius‘ silent film with 12 nominations.  Close behind were Tomas Alfredson‘s spy-thriller Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (11 nominations), and Martin Scorsese‘s Hugo (9 nominations).  However, Hugo is not in the race for Best Film.  The Artist and Tinker Tailor will competed against The Help (boo), The Descendants (expected), and Drive (yay!).  Drive also netted nominations for Best Director (Nicolas Winding Refn), Best Supporting Actress (Carey Mulligan), and Best Editing (Mat Newman), but strangely no nomination for Albert Brooks for Best Supporting Actor.

There are some fun nominations scattered around the BAFTA nods, so hit the jump to check out the full list.  The 2012 BAFTA Awards will be handed out on February 12th.

HUGO, DRAGON TATTOO, and THE ARTIST Among ACE Nominees for Excellence in Editing

by     Posted 2 years, 97 days ago

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The American Cinema Editors have announced their list of nominees for the 62nd Annual Eddie Awards. Before you brush editing off as an insignificant category, take note that no film has won the Best Picture Oscar without at least a Best Editing Eddie nomination in 20 years. Martin Scorsese’s longtime collaborator Thelma Schoonmaker was nominated for her work on Hugo, as were last year’s Oscar winners Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Other films singled out include The Artist, The Descendants, Midnight in Paris, Moneyball, and Young Adult.

On the television side of things, Breaking Bad, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Friday Night Lights, and Game of Thrones all landed nods. Hit the jump to see the full list of nominees. ACE’s 62nd awards ceremony, hosted by Patton Oswalt, will be held February 18th.

2012 Golden Globe Winners Announced; THE ARTIST and THE DESCENDANTS Take Top Prizes

by     Posted 2 years, 98 days ago

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I’ve just spent the past three hours watching and live-blogging the 2012 Golden Globe Awards.  My brain feels mushy.  After the jump and presented without comment is a list of this year’s winners. If you don’t even want to hit the jump, The Artist and The Descendants won Best Comedy/Musical and Best Drama, respectively.  If you want to awards prognosticate, I’ll save you the trouble: both were nominated for a Best Picture Oscar.  Those nominations haven’t been announced yet, but they were nominated.  Trust me.  I’m a professional.

Also, feel free to sound off on the winners and losers.  Lord knows I’ve been doing it for the past three hours.

THE ARTIST Wins Top Prize at Critics Choice Awards; George Clooney Named Best Actor

by     Posted 2 years, 101 days ago

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With each passing awards ceremony, it’s looking more and more likely that we’re in for a fairly boring/predictable Oscars this year. The Artist continues to dominate the precursor ceremonies as it took home the Best Picture and Best Director prize at the Critics Choice Awards. On the acting side of things, George Clooney was named Best Actor for his work in The Descendants, and Viola Davis won Best Actress for The Help. The Artist is our clear frontrunner headed towards Oscar night, and I don’t really think anything else will be able to take it down. I can’t really complain about any of the acting wins, though for what it’s worth I think Brad Pitt gave the best performance of the year in Moneyball.

Elsewhere, Drive won Best Action Movie (though it’s really a drama) Bridesmaids won Best Comedy, and Rango was named Best Animated Feature. Hit the jump to see the full list of winners.

American Society of Cinematographers Announce 2011 Nominees; WAR HORSE Snubbed

by     Posted 2 years, 102 days ago

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Today, the American Society of Cinematographers (ASC) announced their nominees for Best Cinematography of 2011.  Nominations went to Guillaume Schiffman, (The Artist), Jeff Cronenweth (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Robert Richardson (Hugo), Hoyte van Hoytema (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), and Emmanuel Lubezki (The Tree of Life).  The most notable snub is leaving out Janusz Kaminski for War Horse, and it looks like Steven Spielberg‘s movie is just about finished in the Oscar race after having also missed nominations from the Directors Guild and Writers Guild.  I would also say the ASC snubbed Roger Deakins for Rango, but I never really expected them to be open-minded enough to acknowledge an animated movie for Best Cinematography.

The ASC winner will be announced February 12th.  The ASC victor usually lines up with the Oscar winner. [Correction: /Film's Russ Fischer informs me that Kaminski couldn't have been nominated because he resigned from the society years ago.]

Directors Guild Nominations Announced; Contenders Include Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, and David Fincher

by     Posted 2 years, 104 days ago

As we move ever closer to the Academy Awards, the director’s guild has just announced the five nominees who will contend for the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Feature Film for 2011. The DGA’s are a major prognosticator for the Best Director award at the Oscars, as only six times has the DGA winner not gone on to win Best Director. This year’s nominees include Martin Scorsese for Hugo, Woody Allen for Midnight in Paris, Michel Hazanavicious for The Artist, Alexander Payne for The Descendants, and David Fincher for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Hit the jump for more, including my thoughts on the nominees.

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