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Showing posts from February, 2011

Animation and the Academy

The academy's relationship with the animated field has been a neglectful one. As of 2011 only three films have been nominated for Best Picture. That figure would be four had the Academy exhibited better judgment in their selection of films in 2009 (WALL-E should have easily slipped by The Reader). With the addition of the ten slots rule an animated film has made it to the big dance two years in a row.
Whether or not more nominations will yield a win is yet to be seen, but this year seemed like the best opportunity for an animated film to take the prize. Toy Story 3 was met with almost-universal acclaim and - up until the inclusion of The Social Network and The King's Speech - was many critic's number one film.
UP was my favorite film of last year and had I an ballot I would have placed it firmly at #1. Another deserving candidate would have been Beauty and the Beast, but Silence of the Lambs had everything all but sealed early on. For many animated films are easy to discri…

'Inception' and 'King's Speech' Clean Up Oscars

While the big talk may have been about whether or not The Social Network would beat The King's Speech, or whether Annette Bening would finally get that Best Actress Oscar, Alice in Wonderland's bizarre wins (Costume, Art Direction), Inception cleaned up at the 83rd Academy Awards taking four of the eight awards (cinematography, visual effects, sound mixing, sound editing) it was nominated for.
The King's Speech also had four wins, next was The Social Network with 3 wins, and The Fighter had two as well as Alice in Wonderland.
Best Film The King's Speech
Best Actor Colin Firth
Best Actress Natalie Portman
Best Supporting Actor Christian Bale
Best Supporting Actress Melissa Leo
Best Director Tom Hooper
Animated Film Toy Story 3
Foreign Film In a Better World
Adapted Screenplay Aaron Sorkin - The Social Network
Original Screenplay David Seidler - The King's Speech
Documentary Feature Inside Job
Make-up The Wolfman
Original Score Trent Reznor - The Social Network
Original Song Randy…

The Vault: The Blob (1958)

Yes, it’s The Blob, another one of those B grade, underfunded, science fiction movies that came out during the Cold War Era. Cheesy? Incredibly. But when you watch it, you’re getting exactly what you asked for; cherry-pie filling monster and all.

Steve Andrews (played by Steve McQueen, billed for the only time as “Steven McQueen”) is out watching the night sky with his girlfriend Jane (Aneta Corsaut) when they see what they think is either a meteor or a shooting star, the latter being the more romantic of the two. Thinking that whatever it is may be close, Steve and Jane jump in the car to investigate.

Flash to a different scene: An old man living in his rural mountain shack hears a loud noise from outside. He goes to check it out, and finds a circular object. After poking it most wisely with a stick, the circular meteor object opens, revealing a clear, sticky, jello-like substance. The old man accidentally touches the blob, and… well, guess.

Flash back to Steve and Jane: They’re drivi…

Due Date Dash Day Three

This is the third day of Warner Bros. Due Date giveaway and three of the top slots have been taken but free rentals of the film are still available.

This is the last set of clues being given for Due Date Dash. To enter leave your answer regarding who my "companion" blog is in the comments below.

Malick's Untitled Romance

It seems odd that just recently we got a first look at Tree of Life a few months ago (that took years in the making) and now we get a look at Malick's next film - released in 2012 supposedly - that has only been in production for a few months. Odd man that Terrence Malick.
Not very revealing, but another dazzling shot from Malick. Pictured are Ben Affleck and Rachel McAdams, the rest of the cast includes: Javier Bardem, Rachel Weisz and Barry Pepper.
(Courtesy: The Hollywood Reporter)

Due Date Dash Day Two

It's day number two of Due Date Dash and the guessing game for my "companion" blog continues. Two more clues will be given today and the next two will be given Thursday.

Remember, to enter all you have to do is leave your answer as to who my matching blog is in the comments below. No one has ventured a guess yet, so all six prize slots are still available.

Due Date Dash

Warner Bros. is hosting a Due Date prize giveaway and, like Robert Downey Jr. and Zach Galifinakis, Nevermind Pop Film has been teamed up with another blog for Due Date Dash. In order to win you simply have to guess what other film blog NPF has partnered up with and leave your answer in the comment section below.

10 Words or Less: Memento (2000)

Leonard can't remember a thing to save his life.

Guillermo Del-Toro to Produce "Darker" Pinocchio

Guillermo Del-Toro is a busy, busy man. Luckily, he has taken time to develop and produce a stop-motion Pinocchio for Universal pictures, Deadline reports. The project is based on the 2002 book by Gris Grimly, which aimed for an older audience. Del Toro knows his craft by now (Pan's Labyrinth, Hellboy and The Devil's Backbone) and I can't see how this could possibly be bad.
If that weren't enough to stoke your fires Nick Cave has signed on to be the musical consultant and the puppets and 3D will be done by the UK company McKinnon and Saunders who also did the puppets for Fantastic Mr. Fox, and Corpse Bride.

Shane Black to Direct Iron Man 3

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang scribe Shane Black, according to Deadline, is in final negotiations to direct the third Iron Man film. Black is known best for writing the Lethal Weapon 1 and 2 films as well as The Last Boy Scout. This seems like an excellent choice as Iron Man 2 was missing most of that spunky fun that the original Iron Man had in spades. And Black knows how to write a witty actioner.
Black has a good relationship with Downey as he re-launched his career in 2005 with the cult-hit Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and seeing how Favreau left Marvel in the dust this project could certainly use all the good will it can muster.

Review: Un Prophète

Prison is viewed as the last resort for the dregs of society. Criminals will either spend their time recounting and repenting their misdeeds that brought them there, or something more sinister occurs. Occupants with negligible offenses seek safety in the arms of prison elders. Young men are trained by the old about the inner, delicate linings of a criminal enterprise. Now, they are smarter, more sophisticated offenders. What is left is the evolution of a criminal.
Malik (Tahar Rahim) is a low-level head-buster. Despite only being nineteen, Malik is going to serve the next six years of his life in prison. If he wants to cling to survival, he needs to find a group to attach himself to.

Luciani (Neils Arestrup) is connected and he also serves as the unofficial head of the prison that Malik inhabits. When Luciani makes a proposal to Malik, suddenly he has to make a choice that never faced him before: kill the new witness for the state, or become just another figurehead in the national f…

The Vault: Gone Baby Gone (2007)

Amanda McCready is missing and Patrick (Casey Affleck) and Angie (Michelle Monaghan) are hired to assist in bringing her back home. Patrick is a life-long Beantowner, this city made him. Subsequently, he knows this city's dark alleys better than any law enforcement. If there is a chance that Amanda can be found, it rest in these dark alleys.
Boston is a city that wears its blue collar proudly, the people don't gossip, and they answer questions even less often. Police inquiries are dusted off and no answers are had. This is a problem because in missing child cases 50% of the children die within 78 hours and the window is closing. No one is more aware of that than Chief of Police Jack Doyle (Morgan Freeman), whose own child died after being abducted. The police are utilizing every available resource looking for the child, but Patrick is sure something is amiss and it starts with Amanda's mother, Bea (Amy Ryan).
She does coke, screws around, and deals, but she never finds th…

Spider-man Reboot Titled 'Amazing Spider-man'

Sony announced today that the new name of the latest Spider-man film starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone will be The Amazing Spider-man. The title alludes to the comic book series where Gwen Stacy was the main love interest, Pete's web-shooters are his own invention, and high-school angst will feature more prominently.
The 3D reboot will be released July 3rd, 2012

10 Words or Less: I Love You, Man (2009)

Not your traditional love story.

Join Our Oscar Pool

Oscar season has begun and NMPF is looking for competitors to compete for Oscar gold of your own over at Picktainment.

Ryan Reynolds vs. James Franco

One tale features a man buried alive, the other, features a man trapped by his own appendage. One is receiving awards play, the other is barely talked about. So why the difference?
Paul's (Ryan Reynolds) encounter with death is a far different take than Aron Ralston's (James Franco). Granted, both are initially frantic but there is a zen-like quality to Ralston's that never appears in Buried. And for good reason. Ralston's predicament is - and Ralston admits as much himself - his own fault. Had he deemed it a good idea to tell anyone of his location his journey could have ended with both arms intact. Paul Conroy wakes up six feet under at an undisclosed region of the desert armed with only his phone, writing and a lighter. He has a timetable for his escape whereas Ralston had as much time as his supplies allotted.
We are a nation of the insured, so it comes to no one's surprise when Aron Ralston comes along, throws caution to the wind and ends up captivating the …

Review: Made in Dagenham (****)

I was lucky enough to catch Made in Dagenham last night at the local rep cinema. I consider myself lucky because I'd never heard of the film, and I consider it to be one of the best of 2010.
The movie tells the story of a strike in the upholstery shop, staffed solely by women, at the Ford Motors plant in Dagenham, England. Initially a strike about being classified as unskilled labour, the cause quickly morphs into a demand for equal pay for women. It's quite an inspiring tale.

Sally Hawkins (Happy Go-Lucky) turns in a tremendous performance as the (fictional) strike leader Rita O'Grady.

Movies like this really deserve more attention. It wasn't a ground breaking work of cinema, but it was a more solid film than a lot of the dreck that's being thrown around for the "Best of 2010" honours.

'Win Win' Trailer

Paul Flaherty (Paul Giamatti) moonlights as a bad wrestling coach, and his day job includes taking custody of an elderly man. His grandson (Alex Shaffer) shows up and could change everything. A gifted athlete with a troubled past he could also lose everything when his mother re-appears in their lives.

10 Words or Less: The American (2010)

He cares about his craft, and nothing else.