Posts tagged “2012

Mike’s Top Ten of 2012

2012 is the first (and perhaps only) year from this decade where the top ten list I posted at the time exactly matches my top ten now. I knew immediately what my ten favorite movies were that year, and that hasn’t changed. And, in all likelihood, that won’t change. These ten are pretty much my ten. My goal in writing up the list each year is to try to best guess what films are not only my favorite films at the moment, but also which ones are going to continue being my favorite films over time. Some years turn out better than others. And as it stands, this might be the only one of the decade where I ended up being completely right all the way through.

Which is impressive to me, because there are two choices on this list that are not mainstream choices for top ten films. I don’t think you’ll see those on most people’s lists. And if you do, chances are they won’t be around a lot of the other stuff I’ve also chosen. But I love them, and would 100% call them two of the top movies of the year.

I’m a big fan of this list. (more…)


A Pictorial History of the Movies: 2012 – The Avengers

At this point, pretty much any movie that cracks the top five all-time box office upon initial release is most likely going to be considered the film that defines its year. Though, in this particular case, it actually represents a larger trend that I’ve been discussing, which is superhero movies (Spider-Man, then The Dark Knight).

Starting with Harry Potter, franchises became the major form of big budget movie for Hollywood, and they haven’t turned back since. The trend has only taken even more of a stranglehold on the marketplace since then. Now, everything that comes out has a subtitle, designed to spawn a series of films. Movies can’t be one-offs anymore.

But The Avengers actually represents a very specific twist in the superhero genre, one that will define the next ten years of Hollywood, which is the trend of world building. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today. (more…)


Mike’s Top Ten of 2012 (REMIX)

I had the idea to do this for last year’s top ten, and then that branched out to doing last year, this year, and the year before last — because that’s what happens with me.

I came up with the list three months ago, so there aren’t too many changes — but I have certainly updated my feelings about the films. I definitely have a better handle on stuff right now, and I have to say — sometimes I worry that I do a bad job of picking my list and that some films are gonna fall off. One, maybe two is acceptable over time. Three or more is not. And now, three months after I came up with the list — if I’m changing my top ten around, that’s not good.

So my hope in doing this was that I still felt the same way about all of the films, and that was my reason for doing this — making sure I’m still making my top ten lists the right way, which is with an eye for the long run, and not putting stuff on there because it’s trendy but rather because I think I’ll still love it as a favorite film of the year in five or ten years.

That in mind, here’s my (REMIXED) Top Ten list of 2012: (more…)


Oscars 2012 Recap

Another year is in the books, and so is another Oscar ceremony. The 85th Academy Awards were handed out last night, and we have our winners. This was an even better year than the last two years were, and I liked the last two years. I thought 2012 was a better year for movies and a better year for Oscar movies than the previous ones. Which is always a nice thing to be able to say.

Overall, I think the show was terrific. It clocked in at something like 3 hours and 35 minutes, which is terrific. Nothing really slowed it down, and they did a lot of things right. So I’m a fan of that. I kind of wish they did a bit more with MacFarlane as host. It felt like they went broad with a lot of the jokes, and some of them were a bit too… childish. Like the song about boobs. But whatever. I love that it was a tribute to musicals.

Anyway, let’s just get into the recap, that’s what we care about here anyway: (more…)


85th Academy Awards Results

The winners at the Oscars tonight were (in the order they were give out):

Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained

Best Animated Short: Paperman

Best Animated Feature: Brave

Best Cinematography: Life of Pi

Best Visual Effects: Life of Pi (more…)


Oscars 2012: The Quick Picks

In case you wanted something easier to reference than my 2012 Oscar Picks article.

This is just a (mostly) abbreviated list of all my predictions for the Oscars (which are happening within the next hour, hour and a half).

The way this works is, I’m going through each category, listing my personal choices for each one, listing what I think you should take on your ballot (as well as an alternative choice of what’s most likely to win if not the one I’m telling you to take), listing what I’m taking on my ballot, actually saying what will win if my pick doesn’t (just to show you that even if I’m wrong, I’m usually right there on every category but the real shockers), and then giving you very brief (compared to the other article) analysis of the category so you can fill out your ballot and such and not have to refer to the clusterfuck that is that predictions article.

So here they are. Good luck, everyone (go beat all those fucks you’re watching with): (more…)


Oscars 2012: Picks, Votes, Analysis, Rankings

Oscar night is upon us.

I must say, I am proud of myself this year. I went through this season without reading much of anything other than who won the precursors. I only started checking the Oscar blogs and such after I finalized these picks, and I have to say — I’m glad I didn’t read them. People get bitter real quick and start campaigning for shit. The whole thing is littered with subjectivity and negativity. It’s disgusting.

Anyway, what I’m gonna do here is what I do every year — try to get as close to 24/24 as I can. My average is around 16-18, depending on the year. If I get at least 16, then I consider myself as having been successful in picking. I’ll go through every category, list my personal preferences (like I did in all my Oscar Quest articles), then talk about which nominee I think is most likely to win, which is that film’s main competition, and which film has the potential to upset and win the category. Then I’ll finish by telling you what is the smart choice, what I think you should have on your ballot (if you want to win your Oscar pool. From 2006-2010, I had a contest with my friends, telling them that if any of them outguessed me, I would buy them dinner. I never paid for one dinner. You’re free to do what you want, and I assume we’ll have at least a few differences of opinion anyway, which is why I’m only suggesting what the smartest course of action is), and what I have on my ballot. (I’ll also, just before the show, post a Quick Picks version of this article for reference purposes.) I also color-code everything, to make it as easy to read (and as colorful) as possible.

So let’s get right into it: (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Zero Dark Thirty

We complete our articles today with Zero Dark Thirty.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Zero Dark Thirty:

Zero Dark Thirty - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Silver Linings Playbook

Our next Best Picture nominee is Silver Linings Playbook.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Silver Linings Playbook:

Silver Linings Playbook - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Lincoln

Our next Best Picture nominee is Lincoln.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Lincoln:

Lincoln - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Life of Pi

Our next Best Picture nominee is Life of Pi.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Life of Pi:

Life of Pi - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Les Misérables

Our next Best Picture nominee is Les Misérables.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Les Misérables:

Les Misérables - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Django Unchained

Our next Best Picture nominee is Django Unchained.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Django Unchained:

Django Unchained - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Beasts of the Southern Wild

Our next Best Picture nominee is Beasts of the Southern Wild.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Beasts of the Southern Wild:

Beasts of the Southern Wild - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Argo

Our next Best Picture nominee is Argo.

What I’m doing is posting my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

Here are my favorite moments from Argo:

Argo - Title Card (more…)


My Favorite Moments in the 2012 Best Picture Nominees: Amour

Every hour, for the next 9 hours, I’m going to post my five favorite moments from each of the Best Picture nominees. It’s a nice way to take a break from all the Oscar stuff to remind myself (and all of us) that once you take away all the competition and the awards, what we’re left with is great cinema. That’s what it’s about.

We’re starting with Amour:

Amour - Title Card (more…)


Oscars 2012 Update: Costume Designers Guild Awards

The Costume Designers Guild announced their awards last night. Two of the nominees won.

Anna Karenina won for Period Film.

Mirror Mirror won for Fantasy Film.

Skyfall won for Contemporary Film.

None of these wins are surprising at all. And I think we all agree Anna Karenina is a huge favorite to win the Oscar category. So, no surprises at all.

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2012 Oscars Update: MPSE Awards

The Motion Picture Sound Editors announced their winners last night. This one’s gonna be light on analysis, since my Sound Mixing and Sound Editing article is coming up soon, and I’ll talk about what the wins here mean in that article. But, for now, we have winners.

In the category of Sound Effects and Foley in a Feature Film, with a shitload of nominees (Argo, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, The Avengers, Prometheus, Skyfall, Dark Knight Rises and The Hobbit, which contains 4/5 of your Oscar category, sans Zero Dark Thirty), the winner was Skyfall.

In the category of Dialogue and ADR in a Feature Film (which featured Argo, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Moonrise Kingdom, Silver Linings Playbook, Skyfall and The Hobbit as its nominees), the winner was Life of Pi, which is pretty interesting.

In the category of Music in a Feature Film (nominees being Argo, Cabin in the Woods, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Skyfall, Dark Knight Rises, and The Hobbit), Life of Pi won again, which I wager says a lot about where Best Original Score is gonna end up.

In the category of Music in a Musical Feature Film, I don’t have to bother with the nominees, since Les Misérables obviously won. And also, to save time, Rust and Bone won for Foreign Language, Last Call at the Oasis won for Documentary, and Wreck-It Ralph won for Animation, as it absolutely should have.

So those are your Sound Editors Guild winners. The Costume Designers announce tonight, and I think they’re the last guild leading up to the awards. So at this point it’s all figuring out predictions for Sunday.

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2012 Oscars Update: WGA Awards

The WGA Awards were announced tonight.

Argo won for Adapted Screenplay. It pretty much has that in the bag. Especially considering 4/5 of that category is the Oscar category

Zero Dark Thirty won for Original Screenplay. This means a little less, since the presumed frontrunners for the Oscar, Django and Amour weren’t nominated/ineligible. So that was a pretty expected outcome. I still say this is no more than an upset winner at the Oscars.

And Searching for Sugar Man won for Documentary. That pretty much has it in the bag.

That’s it. Quick update. Basically set more things in stone. Looking like Argo has at least three Oscars in the bag at this point.

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Oscars 2012 Update: ACE Eddie Awards & Cinema Audio Society Awards

Two guilds announced tonight. First, The American Cinema Editors. As a reminder, only 14 times did one of the winners for the Eddie Award NOT go on to win Best Editing.

The Eddie Awards for Dramatic and Comedy Film went to, respectively, Argo and Silver Linings Playbook.  That pretty much seals the deal for Argo as Best Picture and makes it a huge favorite to win Best Editing too. (Hey, remember when I said it was probably gonna end up with Picture, Editing and Screenplay?)

Oh, and Brave won for Animated Film, which makes an upset seem very probable, given that it also won the BAFTA and that Wreck-It Ralph might not have the older contingent going for it. Searching for Sugar Man won for Documentary, which pretty much means we’re all taking that until it loses. And, on a personal note, The Newsroom won one too. I love that shot.

The Cinema Audio Society also announced their awards tonight. That’s for sound mixing. We’ll get into what that actually is if you don’t know when that article goes up soon. But basically, know that the winner of the CAS Awards will impact what happens in the Best Sound Mixing (aka Best Sound, as they seem to like calling it) category. And the winner of the CAS Award this year was Les Misérables. Which, honestly, pretty much means it has that category all but won. They love voting for musicals there when they can. Oh, and Brave won for Animated Film. I see an upset coming…

Oh, so yeah, that’s where we’re at. More categories tomorrow.

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2012 Oscars Update: BAFTA Awards

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts announced their awards yesterday.

Here’s what happened.

We’re just gonna get right into it.

Best Film

Argo

Les Misérables

Life of Pi

Lincoln

Zero Dark Thirty

Your winner after the jump: (more…)


Oscars 2012 Update: ASC Awards

The American Society of Cinematographers gave out their awards tonight.

Roger Deakins won for Skyfall.

You’d think this matters, but the man has won this award countless times and still doesn’t have an Oscar.

I still say they’re gonna fuck him over on Oscar night. I can just see Life of Pi winning.

But anyway, he has this. So that’s something.

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Oscars 2012 Update: BAFTA Predictions

The BAFTA Awards are starting now over in the UK. Which works out quite nicely, since I needed an article to fill today.

I have to remind myself each year just how much the BAFTAs actually matter in terms of the Oscars. I keep thinking it’s “Not at all,” but I’m never sure enough to just say that. Usually I think the BAFTAs as either going entirely British, like awarding The Queen all the way through or something like that, or they just piggy back on what the Oscar trend is. Like when they jump all over The Artist or something. But, we’ll see. I’ll go over past winners for each category, so we’ll see just how much it actually seems to mean anything. Mostly I just look at the BAFTA section of the branches and how that might affect voting, but typically, I feel like not many of their decisions actually have Oscar consequences. Like, if they suddenly gave Best Film to Life of Pi, I don’t think there will be many articles about, “Oh man, does that have a chance now?” There will be obligatory ones, but I don’t think people will actually take that seriously. If Les Mis wins, people will still not think it has a chance. Usually they only confirm stuff.

But anyway, they are the BAFTAs, and they are a big deal across the pond, and they are an awards show, so here are my predictions for them, the 66th BAFTA awards: (more…)


Oscars 2012 Update: Visual Effects Society Awards

The VFX Awards were announced yesterday.

Life of Pi won most of the awards. It won Outstanding Visual Effects in a Visual Effects-Driven Feature Motion Picture, Outstanding Animated Character in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture (Richard Parker), Outstanding FX and Simulation Animation in a Live Action Feature Motion Picture (the Storm of God), and Outstanding Composting in a Feature Motion Picture (the Storm of God).

Brave won four awards too. Animation in an Animated Feature, Character in Animated Feature (Merida), Created Environment in Animated Feature (the forest) and FX and Simulation Animation in Animation.

The Impossible won Supporting Effects in a Feature (YES!) and The Avengers won for the Midtown created environment and the Helicarrier model, and The Hobbit won for Virtual Cinematography.

But, none of this really matters, since a film nominated for Best Picture has never lost Best Visual Effects. Ever. (Unless two Best Picture nominees were nominated for Effects. Then obviously one list.) You’d have to be an idiot to vote for anything other than Life of Pi in this category for the Oscars. (more…)