The best movie of 2017 isn’t going to win Best Picture at the 90th annual Academy Awards on Sunday. That’s a fact, and it’s fine. I’ve come to terms with it. Sort of. Maybe not.Read More →

Anyone who has seen Call Me By Your Name will understand why Chalamet has been lavished with praise by critics and audiences alike. His instincts and choices are so sharp, so perceptive, and so thorough, as he navigates an astonishing range, from precocious to petty to lusty aggression, that you’re almost a little bitter that anyone so young should be gifted the sort of talent that most actors never achieve in their lifetime. Read More →

Well, what a clusterfuck this award season has become. The best movie of the year, Luca Guadagnino’s sensational Call Me By Your Name, is pretty much out of the game thanks to Sony Pictures Classics glacial theatrical rollout plan (174 theaters after seven weeks? Come on!). Not enough people have seen the movie, which isn’t so surprising for such a specific niche film. It’s only chance at Oscar glory at this point is if enough Academy members rank it first or second on their preferential ballot.Read More →

What a totally strange year for movies. By the time December rolls around, I invariably have a good two or three movies jockeying for the number one spot on my best-of list, and several others elbowing their way into second and third—movies that have somehow moved or inspired me. Visceral films, intense emotional reactions; that sort of thing.Read More →

    It’s that time again! In keeping with my annual tradition, here are my predictions for who will take home Academy Awards in major categories, who should win, and who would’ve been a serious contender had they been nominated. I’m also throwing in a few caveats for possible upsets.  Note: I saw all the movies listed here, but Wolf of Wall Street.  Sorry, Martin Scorsese. Best Picture American Hustle Captain Phillips Dallas Buyers Club Gravity Her Nebraska Philomena 12 Years a Slave The Wolf of Wall Street Will win: 12 Years a Slave Should win: American Hustle Coulda-been: Prisoners or Fruitvale Station Caveat: I’ve beenRead More →

  Now that I’ve dispensed with the best movies of 2013, it’s time for a quick look at those I’ve deemed (through my keen powers of deeming) the worst.  My choice for the number one abomination of 2013 is a movie so wrong-headed, so remarkably awkward and creepy, so catastrophically BAD, that there was really no other place to put it except at the top.  Another Texas Chainsaw Massacre iteration made those that came before it look like The Godfather.  I was a huge fan of the first two Iron Man movies, but someone was asleep at the switch when they produced the unmitigated disaster that was the third inRead More →

  Turns out, it was a good year for movies — and in some cases, a great one.  Two titles in particular left me emotionally devastated (Fruitvale Station and 12 Years a Slave).  I saw a terrific documentary about killer whales in captivity (Blackfish), that subtly turned into a damning indictment of corporate greed.  Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg returned with the third part of their Cornetto trilogy, The World’s End, which made my list not only because it was the best comedy of the year, but because it succeeds as a rather touching portrait of an alcoholic desperate to reconnect with his youth.  AndRead More →

For Halloween this year, I decided to tackle a list of my favorite horror movies.  These are the ones that had an impact on me the first time I saw them.  Some of them fill me with nostalgia.  Some are just damned great movies.  They aren’t all necessarily the best, but they’re mine, and depending on my mood, I might change my mind about them tomorrow.  The number of titles, 15, is completely random; if I’d kept going, this list would have run into the hundreds. You’ll also notice more than half the titles on this list were released in the 1970s, a decade referred toRead More →

Who in the world is Jessica Chastain?  And more importantly, where did she come from?  As if by sleight of hand, she seems to have appeared out of the air, clear and fully formed.  So far this year she has co-starred in five films, several of them critically-acclaimed, including one by legendary director Terrence Malick.  Soon, she will be seen in Coriolanus, where she takes on Shakespeare and Ralph Fiennes. None of this would seem especially notable for a prolific actor.  But Chastain deserves special mention: having only appeared in three films in three years, she is now a part of six in twelve months.Read More →