Friday, February 28, 2014

My official predictions for the 86th annual Academy Awards.

On Sunday night, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will honor what they feel has represented the best achievements in film of 2013 during their 86th annual Oscars ceremony. The Oscars are always interesting to watch. Even though numerous races are set in stone from the get-go, there will always be the tricky categories to give us pause in predicting what we think the winners will be. This year has been no less perplexing, with support for films flying all over the place from presumed runaway frontrunners, to now several films having a legitimate chance to take the victory.

I wasn’t planning on doing this, but given how good and how hectic the year has been, I decided to toss in my predictions of who is going to win in all 24 categories, and my reasons as to why. I’m not 100 percent sure on all of these predictions, but these are all as finalized and certain as I’m going to get. With that said, let’s get started.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

My top ten most anticipated films of 2014...

 Coming off of the fantastic year in film of 2013, now is the time for me to look ahead to some of my most highly anticipated films of 2014. The year itself has already turned in some titles worthy of notice, even in such a dumping ground as terrible as February (which includes THREE remakes), the fact that we’ve already got a movie as excellent as The Lego Movie (which I recommend everyone go see) is a very encouraging sign. 2014 has potential that it could even best last year, and so, having found some time to sit down and properly put my thoughts together, I give you my list of my top ten most anticipated releases of the year.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Top Ten Best Films of 2013...

Alright, everyone! It’s all come down to this. After spending so much time talking about the worst movies of 2013, it’s finally time to talk about the best that 2013 had to offer. Despite some embarrassingly bad titles tossed around this year, I still maintain that it was a fantastic year for films, with plenty of variety to showcase. It had everything from sci-fi romance to action thrillers, from family dramas to survival thrillers in space, and from Hobbits and dragons to snowmen and reindeer. It seemed to have a little bit of something for everyone, and today, I’m counting it all down in the top ten best movies I saw all year. Please keep in mind that there are still high profile films I haven’t gotten around to like Blue is the Warmest Color, Nebraska, Philomena (or, as it’s now called, PhiloMANIA), and The Wind Rises.

Before moving on to the official top ten, I’d like to hand out some honorable mentions to films that would have been very deserving of placement on here. Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave is a brutal, devastating, and essential portrait of slavery, lifted by Chiwetel Ejiofor’s stunning lead performance. Inside Llewyn Davis from the brothers Coen is among the duo’s best films in years, a tale as timeless and heartbreaking as the folk songs present in the feature. Woody Allen struck a home run with Blue Jasmine, thanks mainly due to the performances of Cate Blanchett and Sally Hawkins as two sisters in a believably bitter situation. Dallas Buyers Club boasted fantastic performances all around, especially from those of the Oscar worthy Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto. Pacific Rim from Guillermo Del Toro is one of the best blockbusters of the year, and is an all around massive, spectacular, and thoroughly entertaining popcorn flick.
One project that I’d like to show due appreciation to (even though it isn’t a movie), is the spectacular survival-horror video game The Last of Us from the creative minds at Naughty Dog. If this qualified as a movie, it would have easily taken my position at number 1. Ever since finishing the game back in June, every image and emotion felt from the experience has stuck with me. From the gritty tone and atmosphere, the frightening sound design, the harrowing script, the inseparable duo of unforgettable lead characters, all the way down to the haunting score, The Last of Us not only proved how well a game can tell a story, but put any and all of the movies released this year to shame. It is perfection, one of the greatest games of all time, and a living testament that video games are high art.

All geeky gamer rambling done, let’s introduce the top ten.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

The Top five worst films of 2013...

With 2013 officially brought to a close, I can now look ahead to the year 2014....

…But not without a couple side stops along the way. In light of the end of the year, I decided to take this time to look back on the year, creating a new feature where I celebrate the best and the worst the year had to offer. To start it off, I present to you the top five worst movies of the year.

I’ve said that 2013 was a fantastic year for movies, but that doesn’t mean we still didn’t get some disastrous titles along the way: After Earth, Diana, Texas Chainsaw 3D… just to name a few. However, I would like to note that I haven’t gotten around to some of these reportedly terrible titles, so this is only relegated to what bad offerings I did end up seeing. Titles that I had hopes for despite their bad reception, or titles I watched because I guess I just felt like I needed to be punished.

First of all, I want to give out some dishonorable mentions before we move on. Barely missing out is Only God Forgives, Nicolas Winding Refn’s take on Dante’s The Divine Comedy, that ends up being a half-baked, garish, discordant purgatory all its own because of its sloppy direction, whether or not that was the intention being irrelevant. How I Live Now starring Saoirse Ronan would have been my worst of the year had it not been for the survival elements in the second half. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 was an obnoxious, unfunny letdown from its highly enjoyable original. The Way, Way Back gets my vote for 2013’s most overrated, a downright unpleasant mixture of uncomfortable comedy and tacky drama lifted mainly by Sam Rockwell. M. Night Shyamalan’s After Earth also gets a mention for its stupid, illogical script, and uninteresting performances. I’d also like to give a shout out to those awful voiceovers from Walking with Dinosaurs. Even though the movie itself isn’t bad, those terrible vocal performances bring it all to a screeching halt.

Anyway, let’s get to the real top five.