Tuesday, 27 November 2012

2013 Independent Spirit Awards-Nominees

So ,here is the full list of the nominees of the 2013 Independent Spirit Awards.Both Silver Linings Playbook and Moonrise Kingdom each leads the nomination with 5 each and Matthew McConaughey being the only actor with more than one nomination this year for his amazing year playing distinct roles giving some of the best of his career with films like Killer Joe,Mud,Magic Mike and the Paperboy.I'm glad both Mary Elizabeth Winstead(Smashed) and Ann Dowd(Compliance) got a nod in their respective category for their amazing performances this year especially the unknown Ann Dowd.If things go well,she might be getting more nods this year and the most anticipated Oscars.Check it out.

Best Feature
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Keep the Lights On
Moonrise Kingdom
Silver Linings Playbook

Best Director
Wes Anderson, Moonrise Kingdom
Julia Loktev, The Loneliest Planet
David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook
Ira Sachs, Keep the Lights On
Benh Zeitlin, Beasts of the Southern Wild

Best Screenplay
Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola, Moonrise Kingdom
Zoe Kazan, Ruby Sparks
Martin McDonagh, Seven Psychopaths
David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook
Ira Sachs and Mauricio Zacharias, Keep the Lights On

Best Female Lead
Linda Cardellini, Return
Emayatzy Corinealdi, Middle of Nowhere
Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Quvenzhané Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild
Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Smashed

Best Male Lead
Jack Black, Bernie
Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
John Hawkes, The Sessions
Thure Lindhardt, Keep the Lights On
Matthew McConaughey, Killer Joe
Wendell Pierce, Four

Best Supporting Female
Rosemarie DeWitt, Your Sister's Sister
Ann Dowd, Compliance
Helen Hunt, The Sessions
Brit Marling, Sound of My Voice
Lorraine Toussaint, Middle of Nowhere

Best Supporting Male
Matthew McConaughey, Magic Mike
David Oyelowo, Middle of Nowhere
Michael Péna, End of Watch
Sam Rockwell, Seven Psychopaths
Bruce Willis, Moonrise Kingdom

Best First Feature
Fill the Void
Gimme the Loot
Safety Not Guaranteed
Sound of My Voice
The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Best First Screenplay
Rama Burshtein, Fill the Void
Derek Connolly, Safety Not Guaranteed
Christopher Ford, Robot & Frank
Rashida Jones and Will McCormack, Celeste and Jesse Forever
Jonathan Lisecki, Gayby

John Cassavetes Award (for feature made for under $500,000)
Breakfast with Curtis
Middle of Nowhere
Mosquita y Mari
The Color Wheel

Best Cinematography
Yoni Brook, Valley of Saints
Lol Crawley, Here
Ben Richardson, Beasts of the Southern Wild
Roman Vasyanov, End of Watch
Robert Yeoman, Moonrise Kingdom

Best Documentary
How to Survive a Plague
Marina Abramović: The Artist Is Present
The Central Park Five
The Invisible War
The Waiting Room

Best International Film
Amour (France)
Once Upon a Time in Anatolia (Turkey)
Rust and Bone (France/Belgium)
Sister (Switzerland)
War Witch (Democratic Republic of Congo)

16th Annual Piaget Producers Award
Nobody Walks
Prince Avalanche
Stones in the Sun

19th Annual Someone to Watch Award
Gimme the Loot
Electrick Children

Stella Artois Truer Than Fiction Award
The Waiting Room
Only the Young

Robert Altman Award

Friday, 16 November 2012

The Host, The Mortal Instruments,Oz :The Great and Powerful-trailer

Based on Stephanie Meyer's novel of the same name,The Host which will be directed by Andrew Niccol(Gattaca) with Saoirse Ronan playing the lead  Melanie Stryder and Wanda with Dianne Krueger as the antagonist Seeker.It does looks like a romantic film with some sci-fi element.From the trailer, I'm  a little glad that Melanie Stryder will be the complete opposite of Bella Swan when the I saw the scene where Melanie decides to die rather than being controlled by the souls.I would probably give it a chance mainly for Saoirse Ronan.Have a look on the trailer and it's not that bad.
Another teaser of the  the Twilight wannabe The Mortal Instrument staring Lilly Collins,Jamie Campbell Bower,Lena Headey and Jonathan Rhys Meyers which is the story of Clary Fray who discovers of her superpowers and roots when her mother is kidnapped by a man called Valentine(JRS).
Lastly,something really good,the trailer of  Oz:The Great and Powerful staring James Franco,Rachel Weisz,Mila Kunis,Michelle Williams and the film will be directed by Spiderman's Sam Raimi.The beautiful visuals instantly reminds  the visuals of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland and the costume looks gorgeous.Mila Kunis in another dark sensual role and its always pure enjoyment to see Rachel Weisz onscreen.It definitely promises to be a visual delight.Have a look!

Thursday, 15 November 2012

A Royal Affair-review

Directed by Nikolaj Arcel(the screenplay writer of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) with Mads Mikkelsen,Alicia Vikander and Mikkel Boe Folsgaard,this Danish film is about the England's Caroline Matilde who gets married to a Danish King at a young age only to find him to be mentally ill.Caroline Matilde,who has different views on life  and longs for a no-traditional female life ,find herself trapped in a loveless marriage when she finds out her new husband is sick and only wants to play.She soon finds out the the  political system of Denmark when most of her books were shipped back to England due to the censorship.Longing for freedom,desire for love,she finds herself attracted to the royal psychian ,Johann Struensee who  shares her views in enlightenment.Together they try to change the outdated system of Denmark which is based on religion and rules by manipulating the mentally ill king who is greatly attached to both of them.

The script is the backbone of this film.Though focusing on the forbidden love between Caroline and Johann,it does attempt to educate the viewers with information on politics of Denmark,the reformation  and the Enlightenment theories and its quite interesting for a history lover like me.I also enjoyed the fact that more attention is focused on building and portraying the relationship between King Christian and Johann Struensee.The only negative thing about the script is it does gets a bit dragging in the middle and rushed in the end.

Mads Mikkelsen as the reformist  Johann Friedrich Struensee gives a steady performance  throughout the film but it was during the last 20 minutes of the film where he shines. I'm so used to see him playing the bad guy but seeing him getting vulnerable at the end was so fresh.The scenes where he realises he will not be pardoned as promised and screaming in disappointment towards the citizens who are afraid of change even though its for the greater good is so heart wrenching.As for his chemistry with his co-stars,i found his chemistry with Mikkel Boe Folsgaard more convincing than his chemistry with Alicia Vikander ,though its not a big problem.

Alicia Vikander as the young queen Caroline from England delivers a solid performance.Despite being a swede actress,she narrates the film in Danish and manages to give a a strong performance at par with the other tow actors.She nails both side of the character the lonely neglected wife who longs for love  and the forward thinking queen  who really cares of her citizens brilliantly.Keira Knightley surely has a stiff competition from this upcoming actress as she seems to be born  just to act in these period films.She has another meaty role in this year's most anticipated costume drama Anna Karenina as the innocent Kitty opposite Keira herself.

However its newcomer Mikkel Boe Folsgard that steals the show as the loony King Christian.His superb performance of 'Mr Bean meets I am Sam meets The King Speech' is a delight to watch.Despite playing a mentally ill character he gives a range of performance.He was annoying and funny during the first half,impressive and sympathetic when his character becomes submissive to Johann.He brilliantly shifts from a childish mentally ill guy to a stern king  with ease and like stated above his chemistry with Mikkelsen was so good that it make me to question the sexuality of King Christian.He is definitely one to watch.

This is a  film where everything  is detail oriented and a feast to the eyes.The costumes in the film is immaculate.The hair and make up in the film also looks great.Its probably this year's best dressed film. As 90% of the film takes place in the castle,the sets are crucial to bring this period piece alive and the art direction team doesn't disappoint.Just as its costumes,the interior designs are gorgeous.

The cinematography is another plus in this film.All the scenes are beautifully captured .I was in awe with two particular scenes; where Johann and Caroline decides to take shelter from the rain under a tree and the scene where Caroline says farewell to her lady in waiting in the backdrop of falling snow.There are many others scene but I really loved those scenes.

In conclusion,A Royal Affair is a detail oriented period custom dram filled with beautiful costumes,imagery's,intense performances for the three lead and a proof that historical film can be interesting too without lavish battles and blood spill.

Possible  Oscar contender  for the following categories:

Best Foreign Film-Denmark
Best Supporting Actor-Mikkel Boe Folsgaard
Best Supporting Actress-Alicia Vikander
Best Costume Design
Best Art Direction
Best Cinematography


Friday, 9 November 2012

Les Miserables,Lincoln,World War Z-trailers

This new trailer of Tom Hooper's Les Miserables features the whole cast singing their respective songs with Anne Hathaway's I dreamed a dream' and Amanda Seyfried's duet with Eddie Redmayne being the highlight.There's also glimpses of Helena Bonham Carter as Madam Thenardier.Check it out

I also included the  international trailer of the Oscar bait  film Lincoln.With Steven Spielberg heading the project and Daniel Day Lewis playing the titular character,Lincoln is definitely a film that could change the race.This particular trailer has a longer look on Sally Field playing  Lincoln's wife and a look on their relationship.

Finally,the trailer of the Zombie apocalypse World War Z based on the novel of the same name staring Brad Pitt.Have a look it does look really good!

Friday, 2 November 2012

The Perks Of Being A Wallflower-review

Once in a while, you watch a film that touched you and leave an impact .That's what The Perks of Being a Wallflower did to me.Directed by the author himself,Stephen Chbosky, the film has  Logan Lerman,Emma Watson,Ezra Miller,Mae Whitman,Paul Rudd and Johnny Simmons as its main cast.

This is movie  about a shy,naive anti-social freshman Charlie who is just about to start his schooling  year and wants this year to be different as he wishes to be more participating  than standing aside.He manages to befriend two of the most outspoken seniors of the school and they introduces Charlie to this new world .As Charlie begins to come out his shell,the fact that his new found friends will be leaving to college worsens his panic attack and brings out a suppressed memory that is the core of his anti-social attitude.

Let me start of by saying I had read the book and its at the top of my favourite book list as it spoke to me in many levels.I have to admit that Stephen Chbosky manages to adapt his novel beautifully into this film.Yes,its a tamer version of the book but  the spirit of the novel is  is present throughout the novel.The only thing I'm disappointed is the decision of Chbosky  made to trim Charlie's relationship with his family members especially his sister from the script.The relationship of Charlie and Candace(Nina Dobrev) is probably one of touching sibling relationship that I've read in a book or watch in a film and its a sad thing he decided to cut it out.However I do understand his decision to cut it off as it deals on more controversial themes like abortion in a movie that is already saturated with sex,drugs and alcohol.

Having a plot that is character driven,the casting  is crucial.That's where Stephen Chbosky strikes gold.The casting in this movie is absolutely perfect starting from  the protagonist Logan Lerman  who plays the shy Charlie to  the smallest role of Melanie Lynskey as Aunt Helen.
Logan Lerman gives a charming,honest performance as Charlie  who wants to be more social this schooling year.He charms the audience with his innocent  and naive looks and deliver a brilliant performance with the right amount of awkwardness and sweetness.He doesn't speak much but he captivates us and make us to root for him.His chemistry with Emma Watson and Ezra Miller is believable.

Ezra Miller coming  fresh from his creepy turn in We Need to Talk about Kevin is the standout of the cast as Patrick,the flamboyant(not that campy),quirky with the over the top personality with a dark painful secret.This character definitely showcases his talent and  how versatile he is as an actor as the character Patrick has two different sides .He really excels in showing vulnerable side of Patrick during the second half and steals the show with nailing the emotional scenes like the post-breakup scene.

Emma Watson as Sam with the tainted past gives a strong performance too.Her matured turn of the sexy Sam who  is trying to be more than her bad reputation definitely leaves Hermione  back in Hogwarts and emerge into a promising star.I do find her American accent quite convincing and its because of her and Lerman's chemistry that their romantic subplot doesn't feels cliched.Its one of those  pure love story  where one only expect nothing but the partner  itself,not even sex.The love story between Sam and Charlie is beautifully portrayed.

Paul Rudd as Charlie's teacher,Mae Whitman as the talkative Mary Elizabeth and Melanie Lynskey as Aunt Helen all gives a good performance with their limited screen time.I have said this before and I'm going to repeat it again.Mae Whitman is definitely one  of the young actress to watch as she is handles both the dramatic and comedic department with ease.In this film she plays Mary Elizabeth ,the chatterbox feminist with a insecure side.

I'm very sure the musical score will be nostalgic to those who grew up in the 90s and there were some beautiful songs that were featured in the film.My favourite would be Asleep by the Smiths.Andrew Dunn the cinematographer had beautifully captured  the beauty of Pittsburgh especially the skyline and its buildings in the night.The scenes in the tunnels are among those visual delights.

I realise that most of the negative reviews of this film tend to focus the fact that the kids in the film speaks like an adult but we have to realise that this film is set during the 90s,pre Internet and pre mobile phones,the  time where kids spend their free times with reading actual books,listening to musics in the radio and poetry.Generally kids at that time are more put together than the kids nowadays.

In conclusion,The Perks of Being a Wallflower is definitely a gem of a film.It has many moments that  is touching and on his way to become a classic and a cult film like its novel.Its definitely moving to my all time favourite  lists of films.

Possible contenders for the following category:
Best Picture
Best Director-Stephen Chbosky
Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay-Stephen Chbosky
Best Actor-Logan Lerman
Best Supporting Actor-Ezra Miller
Best Original Score-Michael Brooks
Best Cinematography-Andrew Dunn