Posts Tagged ‘movies’

Movies Are Dead; TV Is Where At It’s. Wait A Minute! 2013, Edition

March 3, 2014

Sing it with me:  It’s a wonderful night for…  Ellen.  (Hold on; that’s not how it goes.  Though it’s possibly better than, say, I saw your boobs!).

Television is better than it’s even been, but movies– well, movies are back. (As if they ever went away.) And kids, we’ve revived the blog for one night only (seriously, what the heck is an egress?!) to bring you my year in movie-going, 2013-edition.  In a feet of accomplishment that you can only attempt if you too get to be 35 ish, single and without children, I have seen every nominated film– via cinemas, multiplexes, art-houses, screeners, VOD, iTunes, Netflix and Amazon Prime, oh my!– in the major categories (and then some), so here is my completely biased and subjective guide to the only major season in L.A.:  Awards Season.  In other words, it’s Oscar time!  So cue up the Best. Soundtrack. Ever. and get ready to stock your Netflix queue, because it’s Wally’s 2013 Year in Movie-Going!



Fruitvale Station I saw this amazing Ryan Coogler debut twice in the theater, and how it– and Michael B. Jordan– were overlooked is beyond me. Top of the queue, please!

The Way, Way Back A small, funny, delightful coming-of-age film from Faxon & Rash that you ought to watch right after.

Before Midnight Let’s face it, this trilogy is nothing short of a cinematic miracle.

Enough Said Beautiful performances, a funny and well-observed script– hey, a comedy for adults.

Saving Mr. Banks Too schmazltzy? Then you ought to go rent Mary Poppins. An incredible film about film, magic, and– yes– business, with two truly remarkable performances (seriously, he played Walt. Disney.) that were overlooked.

MY OTHER FAVORITES 12 Years A Slave Okay, so it’s excruciating (but rewarding) and I wasn’t thrilled by the ending (Latin spoiler alert: Deus ex machina!) but it’s a remarkable film. And Chiwetel Ejiofor was amazing.

American Hustle The best Scorsese film of the year. Terrific ensemble and a blast.

The Wolf of Wall Street Controversial? You bet. But I don’t go to the movies for morals. And DiCaprio’s never been better.

Captain Phillips They don’t make ’em like they used to? Yeah, right. So good that Mr. Tom Hanks makes it look too easy.

Mud What if the year’s best entry in the McConnaissance was a little Southern indie? Guess what— it is. Netflix now, please!

The Dallas Buyers Club For my money, one of the year’s two most difficult to watch is also filled with true beauty, and two indelible performances.

The Spectacular Now Maybe it’s not a pitch-perfect adaption, but worth seeing for two emerging performances (Shaliene Woodley and the spectacular Miles Teller), as well as an excellent portrayal of addiction.

Nebraska No one but Alexander Payne could’ve made this movie, with no one but Bruce Dern starring. It sneaks up on you and packs a punch.

Frances Ha Real-life couple Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach made the year’s most delightful art-house, NYC, black-and-white pic. Take heed, CBS!

Star Trek: Into Darkness Most fun of the summer. Thank you, Team Enterprise.

DIDN’T THINK I’D LIKE IT, BUT REALLY GOOD World War Z Who would’ve thought there’s more left in zombie tales?

This Is the End A hilarious blast, and a great flick to catch at The ArcLight, in L.A.


All Is Lost Especially after I loved Margin Call. Can’t wait! Monsters University Because I don’t think Pixar makes bad movies.

DON’T RENT Even in a year of fantastic film-going, there are going to be some clunkers. You can skip these, and thank me later: The Great Gatsby; Elysium

BEST PICTURE  For the first time in a long time, no one seems to know who’s going to win! For my money there were a ton of terrific films this year (last year too), and while this is a tough call, no one film, to me, was more awesomely impressive and enjoyable– and cinematic, as I saw it in IMAX 3-D– than Gravity. I actually think it’ll win, too…  but I could be wrong. WILL Gravity SHOULD Gravity OVERLOOKED Fruitvale Station, Saving Mr. Banks, The Way, Way Back

BEST ACTOR Will McConaughey Should Too many: McConaughey, Ejofor, Dern, DiCaprio— an embarrassment of riches Overlooked Um, a young man named Tom Hanks. And Robert Redford. And certainly Michael B. Jordan, for Fruitvale Station

BEST ACTRESS Will Blanchett Should Blanchett— my goodness, what a singular performance Overlooked Did the Academy think Emma Thompson as P.L. Travers just made the acting look too easy?

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR Will Leto Should Leto— as in, he hasn’t acted in a movie in six years, and he’s heartbreaking. But also, Jonah Hill was unrecognizably good, and a revelation as an actor Overlooked Again, that young upstart Tommy Hanks pulled off the overlooked feat of the year, by playing some guy named ‘Walt Disney’ who graced your TV for years.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS Will Lawrence I think she’s gonna edge. Should June Squibb I love Lawrence as much as the next guy, but how about the balls on this brassy dame?

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY Will Her Should The trio that finished Before Midnight Overlooked Kelly Marcel’s Blacklist story, Saving Mr. Banks

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY Will 12 Years A Slave Should Yes, John Ridley’s 12 Years A Slave

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE Will Frozen Let it go, The Croods Should Saw Frozen with two kiddos. Hard to say who was more captivated. Tip of the icicle to soon-to-be-youngest-EGOT winner evah, Mr. Robert Lopez.

Enjoy the loveable, danceable, enjoyable Ellen, but let’s end on a note of remembrance:

The movies lost two real giants this year: Philip Seymour Hoffman and Roger Egbert. Godspeed.