Posts tagged “2021

94th Academy Awards Recap

Well, there’s a lot to talk about from that show, almost none of which involves the actual awards. And since I want absolutely no part of the discourse outside the awards, I’ll only mention this — they decided to cut eight categories from the live broadcast and pre-tape them and the show still went 40 minutes long. And the editing for those categories was the type of editing usually reserved only for Bruce Willis paycheck movies to try to make it seem like he’s on set with the rest of the cast. The whole decision was most glaring when they included those ‘fan favorite’ moments and it was just the most batshit insane list of stuff (which is why you never let the internet vote on anything) and was so glaringly out of place with the rest of the show, because that’s not at all what the show has ever been about and they don’t realize they can never bridge that gap, despite the call of the ratings siren. Someone fucked up, and someone fucked up bad. I hope ratings are terrible (update: they are), because they brought this on themselves, and they deserve every single ounce of it.

But for my purposes, while nice stuff did happen in terms of results, it was one of the most cookie-cutter ceremonies ever in terms of predicting. The only category I would moderately term a ‘surprise’, which you can’t even call that because of the category itself (it’s more a ‘deviation from the expected outcome’) is Animated Short. Otherwise I could have told you the winner of every single one of these categories days ago (and did. Hope all you people that called me about ballots won, because I gave you straight winners, homies). (more…)


The B+ Oscar Ballot: Guide to the 94th Academy Awards

It’s that time again. You know what this is and you know how it works. My goal is, as always, to dissect the ballot and give you as complete a picture of what I think’s gonna happen as I can so you can make smart, informed decisions when picking your ballot. My success is ancillary. I just want you to do well and the analysis to be sound.

I’m not looking to overthink anything, so everything’s gonna be really straightforward this year. If you thought last year was me cutting back, wait until you see this year. (more…)


2021: The Lists

Okay, here they are, finally. All those lists I usually post sporadically throughout December, January (and maybe February) in between Oscar stuff. I said I’d get around to it in some form. This is that form. Most of it was done by January 1st, save a couple of performances that took me a bit longer to watch. Really the delay has just been waiting to try to work through all the scores.

I’ve consolidated my lists into what I feel are the essentials, which are: hidden gems from the year, the films that disappointed me/surprised me, favorite performances, favorite documentaries, favorite posters, and of course, favorite scores. They’ll all be presented without comment, because I just don’t feel the need (or have the time and energy) to come up with stuff to say. I liked it all, and I hope you’ll find my opinion trustworthy enough to go watch and/or listen to this stuff yourself if you haven’t already. Plus, odds are you can probably find everything you need in terms of me talking up how much I liked most of these films in my Top Ten list. I think everyone gets the idea by now.

So, without further ado, here’s a bunch of lists of stuff I really liked from this year: (more…)


Mike’s Top Ten of 2021

2021 is like the flood after a storm. With the crazy year 2020 was, so much stuff was pushed in the hopes of finding an audience not fully burdened with the possible fall of democracy and a global pandemic and, as the year went on, they figured out how to keep working safely and things got back to being filmed. So we had not only all the stuff that was shot throughout the pandemic but also the stuff that was supposed to be released last year, which ended up giving us a real smorgasbord of films to pick from. And, for a change, I definitely didn’t feel worried I wasn’t gonna have enough stuff to put in my top ten.

One thing that will be interesting to look back on in regard to this year (much like last year) is what films people end up gravitating toward and/or discovering over time. Because with the shifting release schedule (most films this year either went day-and-date or went to streaming 30 or 45 days from their theatrical release date, as opposed to the 90 it used to be) and the already-present overabundance of content for people to watch, I haven’t gotten the sense that most people are aware of the a lot of these films. In the latter part of this year, I found myself as the only person in a theater to watch some of these choices. Which means that people either don’t know, don’t care or are waiting for the films to go streaming to see them (which is dicey for some of them because unless it’s a major title, it’s so easy to lose something in the shuffle). Which opens up a whole can of worms of questions in and of itself. But for my purposes here, I am curious to see what films end up later becoming hits when people actually get around to seeing them. And hopefully will do my part to get some people to watch a few of these.

One trend, though, that I think will be fairly uniform across the board for 2021: most people seem to be agreeing on the same crop of films as the best ones. Pandemic or no pandemic, the best filmmakers are still making the best films. (more…)


2021: The Year in Reviews (Wrap-Up)

I guess this is more like “The Site in Reviews,” since this is gonna be the last one and we’re gonna wrap-up 11 years’ worth of reviews.

You know how this works — I guessed ratings back in January and now I see how close I was with everything. Though now, rather than being focused with personal goals like guessing everything either exactly or within a half-star, I’m curious to see what kind of site-long data trends come about.

So let’s wrap this shit up and see what we find. (more…)


2021: The Year in Reviews

8-Bit Christmas — * * * (3 stars)

12 Mighty Orphans — * * * (3 stars)

About Endlessness — * * * ½ (3.5 stars)

The Addams Family 2 — * * ½ (2.5 stars)

Afterlife of the Party — * * * (3 stars)

America: The Motion Picture — * * * ½ (3.5 stars) (more…)