I say every year, this one is the biggest crap shoot of them all.
Most of the categories I can reasonably talk my way through. This one — no idea. I can probably, maybe, get you down to a 50/50 choice, but some years, you have no idea how it’s going to turn out. It’s really hard to figure sometimes.
The last two years, I got it right, fortunately. But the two years before that — no dice. So, we’ll likely stumble our way through another year of this category, and hope everything turns out okay.
Here is your shortlist for Best Live-Action Short: (more…)
The movie poster is a lost art.
That is always the first thing I say when I start talking about my favorite posters of the year. I started this feature back in 2011, when I saw the poster for The Ides of March and thought, “That’s one of the most original poster designs I’ve ever seen.” And it made me realize just how lazy advertising departments are now, regurgitating the same twelve poster designs, trying to remind you of all the other movies like that one that you saw, rather than doing something that sticks out and is unique, and makes you want to see the movie purely on its poster design. How often now do you see a poster and go, “Man, what is that movie?”
At this point so many different variations of a poster get released (teaser posters, first poster, second poster, character posters, DVD cover art), it’s hard to even keep track of them. So rarely are we left with a singular image from a film. It’s because the marketing team only cares about trying to make money for a film and not about truly selling the film. You’ll see more and more that what end up being the best posters of the year are films with a deliberate voice behind them, which either means that the director is very hands on and cares about their product, all the way down to the marketing, or because the voice of the filmmaker is so strong, it bleeds over into the marketing.
The point is — even though the art of movie poster making is a dying one, I’m still going to celebrating the good that is left. I look for posters that are simple, memorable, and tell you exactly what a movie is about in a single image. Or, sometimes things are just cool. It’ll be pretty obvious as we go.
So here are my favorite posters of 2014: (more…)