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It’s an inevitable declaration in any conversation about the Academy Awards: “I hated it when they gave an Oscar to….” (insert undeserving film/director/actor). And why not? The Academy of Motion Picture Arts has shown alarmingly poor taste when it comes to celebrating films. This is, after all, the organization that doled out its highest honor to “Slumdog Millionaire,” Danny Boyle’s… Read more »

15 February 2017 | Features, Other Lists

Roman Polanski’s 1968 film Rosemary’s Baby is a product of a time of not only social upheaval in the United States, but one of massive artistic upheaval as well. Based on the 1967 novel of the same name by Ira Levin, the film came about during a time when American cinema was undergoing a period of modernization marked by a… Read more »

15 February 2017 | Features, Other Lists

This article may contain spoilers. In his twenty years as a film director, Denis Villeneuve has won dozens of awards and been nominated for dozens more. With the eagerly awaited upcoming release of Blade Runner 2049, and having just signed on to direct a new feature film adaptation of Frank Herbert’s classic novel Dune, Villeneuve is poised to enjoy the… Read more »

15 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

Steven Spielberg’s 1998 epic war drama “Saving Private Ryan” is known as a film that shakes its audience by using editing and storytelling in a realistic way. It sucks you into the battlefield with great performances from a stellar cast, yet it also shows you hope within the savagery of war. Written by Robert Rodat, “Saving Private Ryan” details one… Read more »

15 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

If you were to ask someone their definition of an emotionally harrowing film, chances are you’d get some different answers. Many would point out obvious tearjerkers like Broken Circle Breakdown while others would give a shout out to realistic depictions of relationships gone astray like, say, Scenes From a Marriage or Blue Valentine. None of these answers are wrong, really…. Read more »

15 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

As made clear by all the articles and think-pieces on the “Oscar curse”, winning an Academy Award doesn’t guarantee that Hollywood will treat an actor with more respect or opportunities. Most of all, if the actor’s instinct (and agent) doesn’t tend to more prestige roles, they tend to take a steep fall from grace after winning the statuette. The 10… Read more »

14 February 2017 | Features, People Lists

I’m not sure that there is as enjoyable a film genre as the musical, and it’s one that is often derided more than any other, except maybe for horror films. Even when a joyful and technically dazzling pastiche picture like La La Land appears there’s an almost instant backlash from cynical types determined not to enjoy a picture that celebrates… Read more »

14 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

The Oscars have chosen their five picks for the Best Documentary category. While they’re not too shabby, it’s obvious that they left out quite a few stellar choices. It’s not hard to see why. 2016 has graciously gifted us with so many fantastic documentaries. With streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu swooping up as much content as they… Read more »

14 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

Throughout history, filmdom has seen its fair share of horrific on-the-set tragedies. Who could ever forget the fatal accidental shooting of Brandon Lee during The Crow and the litany of deadly stunts gone wrong in films like The Dark Knight and The Expendables II? While some of these mishaps led to long and costly wrongful death trials (a stunt person’s… Read more »

14 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

Maren Ade’s Toni Erdmann is one of those brilliant movies that you have to see for yourself in order to understand where all of the talk about it has been coming from – and once you do, you’ll realise what ‘the fuss’ was all about. On the surface, Toni Erdmann is a relatable story of a retired father, Winfried (Peter… Read more »

14 February 2017 | Features, Other Lists

It is no mean feat to make a movie from start to finish. We’ve all heard stories of Terry Gilliam’s “Don Quixote” or even Stanley Kubrick’s Napoleon project, proving that you can be one of the most admired directors in history and still fall short of putting your vision in front of the cameras. And that’s not to mention the… Read more »

14 February 2017 | Features, People Lists

2017 is filled with Oscar-nominated actors and actresses from a group of high-quality films. But that’s not always the case. While most of the names on this list were at least nominated at some other time during their careers, their nominations in these specific movies seem peculiar. It’s not because they don’t deserve it, but that such performances came within… Read more »

13 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

The late 1960s kickstarted a tidal wave of creativity that splashed into the 70s. With the large shakeup of the old studio system, and radical and fresh material becoming profitable, several exciting new voices emerged from this era with a stunning pedigree. Yet the sharp left turn the film industry took in the 80s with a priority focus on big… Read more »

13 February 2017 | Features, People Lists

Romance films, like any genre, have their own following. While they might not host conventions like the horror and sci-fi crowds, but they are a dedicated lot that go beyond the stereotypical Jennifer Aniston admirer. Love, being the wide-reaching and motley emotion that it is, can’t always be relegated to the same fluffy story involving two or more thirty-something metropolitan dwellers meeting in… Read more »

13 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

Sexual identity is something that is easy for some people to ascertain, but for others it can be a lifelong struggle between societal norms and growing up to be a different person than what we’d anticipated. Confused sexuality is an issue that many people go through, but only a few admit to it. This list presents characters who consciously or… Read more »

13 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists

Foreign language films in 2016 offered stories as diverse as the countries which they originated. Some of these unique films include a horror story from Iran, a comedy from Germany, and a story coinciding with the turbulent political atmosphere in Brazil. The year included two films from arguably the greatest actress of her generation Isabelle Huppert, and films from acclaimed… Read more »

13 February 2017 | Features, Film Lists