Feb 28 2013

101 Greatest Screenplays Revealed!

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 5:55 pm

Here at the blog, we really like movie lists: Best Action Films of the 80s, Top 10 On-Screen Couples,  Greatest Ever One-Liners — they’re always intriguing and never fail to spark an argument with people who disagree with the entries.

Scratch that: we bloody love lists.

But when it  comes to the list of Best Films Ever in the history of cinema, the definitive list that’s always quoted is Sight and Sound’s Greatest Films poll. Taken every ten years from nominations made by esteemed directors and film critics, the list is chocked full of all time classics. The only real problem is that the top ten list rarely changes. And the majority of the entries seem to come from a period of time before most of us was born. Renoir’s 1939 film La Règle du jeu is currently at #4 on their list, but is it really  better than Knocked Up?

Okay, that might be pushing it too far, but you get our point.

But now, the Writers Guild of America have released their own poll of the 101 Greatest Screenplays ever written. Voted on by industry professionals working in American television and cinema, it’s a list that skews heavily towards films made through the Hollywood system but it’s hard to deny that they’ve put together a pretty compelling list.

Like the Sight and Sound poll, a lot of the top places are taken by older film — perhaps influenced by voter nostalgia or maybe in a strange acknowledgment that the craft of screenwriting has slipped in this era when up to 15 writers will work on the script for Spider-Man.

Hitting the top spot is Casablanca, a choice that’s hard to dispute. We challenge you to name another film that has contributed so many famous lines to the cultural consciousness. There are probably kids these days who can quote lines from movie without even knowing its origin.

Following on from that, there’s The Godfather and Chinatown – two films that are still  taught today in film schools around the world. Both of them were also made just years apart by producer Robert Evans, who recounted the experience in his intolerably smug memoir The Kid Stays in the Picture.

But if there’s one person who totally owns the list, it seems to be Billy Wilder who has 4 separate writing credits in the top 30 with Sunset Boulevard (#7), Some Like It Hot (#9), The Apartment (#15) and Double Indemnity (#26). That’s not bad for a man whose first language is German!

Of the younger films on the list, Charlie Kaufman’s script for Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind comes in at #24 closely followed by Groundhog Day at #27. While neither of those films were big hits when they were released, time has been kind to both and they’ve since been acknowledged as modern classics.

The only film that really sticks out in a big way is the screenplay for Tootsie. That 1982 comedy starred Dustin Hoffman as an actor who pretends to be a woman so that he can get a job on a soap opera. Members of the WGA seemed impressed enough with it to place it at #17, beating out On the Waterfront and To Kill a Mockingbird, two films which failed to include enough gay panic jokes to please the voters.

Here’s a run down of the WGA’s Top 50 — are there any miscarriages of justice? Which ones should have been higher? Which ones shouldn’t have been there at all?

1. CASABLANCA
2. THE GODFATHER
3. CHINATOWN
4. CITIZEN KANE
5. ALL ABOUT EVE
6. ANNIE HALL
7. SUNSET BLVD.
8. NETWORK
9. SOME LIKE IT HOT
10. THE GODFATHER II
11. BUTCH CASSIDY AND THE SUNDANCE KID
12. DR. STRANGELOVE
13. THE GRADUATE
14. LAWRENCE OF ARABIA
15. THE APARTMENT
16. PULP FICTION
17. TOOTSIE
18. ON THE WATERFRONT
19. TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD
20. IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE
21. NORTH BY NORTHWEST
22. THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION
23. GONE WITH THE WIND
24. ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND
25. THE WIZARD OF OZ
26. DOUBLE INDEMNITY
27. GROUNDHOG DAY
28. SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE
29. SULLIVAN’S TRAVELS
30. UNFORGIVEN
31. HIS GIRL FRIDAY
32. FARGO
33. THE THIRD MAN
34. THE SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS
35. THE USUAL SUSPECTS
36. MIDNIGHT COWBOY
37. THE PHILADELPHIA STORY
38. AMERICAN BEAUTY
39. THE STING
40. WHEN HARRY MET SALLY
41. GOODFELLAS
42. RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK
43. TAXI DRIVER
44. THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES
45. ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST
46. THE TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE
47. THE MALTESE FALCON
48. THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI
49. SCHINDLER’S LIST
50. THE SIXTH SENSE

 


Feb 28 2013

Steven Spielberg to head Cannes jury

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 9:32 am

Organisers of the Cannes Film Festival have announced that the jury this year will be headed by none other  than director Steven Spielberg.

At first glance, one of the most commercially successful film makers of all time might seem like an ill fit for the festival, which traditionally fetes more cerebral cinematic works than Jurassic Park, say. However, many of Spielberg’s films have been screened at Cannes, dating back to the early 70s, when he won the screenwriting prize for Sugarland Express. Since then, E.T. The Extra Terrestrial and The Color Purple have also seen their European premieres take place near the city’s famous Boulevard de la Croisette.

“The memory of my first Cannes Film Festival, nearly 31 years ago with the debut of E.T., is still one of the most vibrant memories of my career,” Spielberg said in an official press release. “For over six decades, Cannes has served as a platform for extraordinary films to be discovered and introduced to the world for the first time. It is an honor and a privilege to preside over the jury of a festival that proves, again and again, that cinema is the language of the world.”

As the head of the jury, Spielberg will have a hand in awarding films, technicians and performers that are playing in competition. The only prize that everyone has their eyes on, however, is the coveted Palm d’Or.

This is the fourth time in six years that an American has presided over the jury with Robert De Niro, Tim Burton and Sean Penn having been given that honour in recently times.

One of the busiest and most glamorous  events on the showbiz calendar, the Cannes Films Festival will run from from May 15 – 16 this year.

Not that it matters to us. We weren’t invited. *sniff*

 

 


Feb 27 2013

First official pictures of Nicole Kidman as a waxy robot replica of Grace Kelly

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 10:14 am

The first official images have been released from Nicole Kidman’s upcoming film Grace of Monaco. Directed by Olivier Dahan (La Vie en Rose), the movie will see Kidman playing a wax mechanoid clone of Grace Kelly, if this newly release picture is anything to go by.

Having spent the past ten years appearing in both critically-acclaimed (but unseen) works like Margot at the Wedding and big budget flops like Australia, this could very well be the project to catapult Kidman back into the A-List. Presumably telling the story of an android from space that transforms itself into an expressionless approximation of the late Princess of Monaco, Dahan has definitely stated that this is not a biopic of Grace Kelly saying: “I am not a journalist or historian. I am an artist. I have not made a biopic. I hate biopics in general.”

He continues: “I have done, in any subjectivity, a human portrait of a modern woman who wants to reconcile her family, her husband, her career.” But being foreign and not having English as his first language, Dahan likely confused the word ‘woman’ with ‘robot’ in this otherwise empty quote.

Grace Kelly’s children Prince Albert II, Princess Caroline and Princess Stéphanie have criticised the film’s script publicly. A statement from the House of Grimaldi described a series of scenes as “purely fictional”, likely referring to a sequence in which the android princess ends the Cuban Missile Crisis with the help of her rocket-legs.

Grace of Monaco is due in Cinemas next year.

[source: The Guardian]


Feb 26 2013

Coen Brothers sign up to write an Angelina Jolie joint

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 9:58 am

The cinematic collaboration nobody has been clamouring for is finally coming together: Joel and Ethan Coen have signed on to re-write a script that’s to be directed by Angelina Jolie. The as yet untitled film will tell the story of war hero and Olympic athlete Lou Zamperini, who survived 47 without food and water after his plane crashed into the Pacific during WWII.

After Sunday’s Oscar wins for Life of Pi, lifeboat survival movies have become the hottest properties in Hollywood, probably.

This will be the second feature from the director Angelina Jolie, whose first film In the Land of Blood and Honey dealt with the themes of love and religion against the backdrop of the Bosnian War. Critics approached the final product with an apathy normally reserved for auteurs of the highest order, earning the film a 56% fresh rating on the Rotten Tomatoes aggregate site.

Undeterred by this reaction, she will return to her seat behind the camera armed with a screenplay by a pair of writers with 13 Oscar nominations and four Oscar wins between them. And who knows? Maybe armed with her unique perspective as the daughter of a film star, she’ll be able to shed some light on Zamperini’s suffering. After all, no-one knows what it’s like to go for a month without food more than the emaciated star of Wanted.

The Coens are known for directing their own scripts, as with their modern classics The Big Lebowski, Fargo and No Country for Old Men but they have occasionally been known to accept lucrative re-writing assignments — especially when they’re asked to by pretty girls with long eyelashes.

[Source: THR]


Feb 25 2013

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 Sweeps Razzie Awards

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 2:43 pm

The Academy Awards weren’t the only gongs handed out in the Hollywood this past weekend. On the eve of the most glamorous day in show business, the annual Golden Raspberry Awards were handed out in a location slightly less salubrious than the Dolby Theatre. “Celebrating” the worst in mainstream cinema, the Razzies are voted on each year by critics, fans and industry professionals in a strictly non-rigorous process.

This year, in a highly competitive field of critically reviled films, the final installment of the Twilight Saga were the clear winners, receiving Razzies for Worst Picture, Worst Actress (Kristen Stewart), Worst Supporting Actor (Taylor Lautner), Worst Screen Ensemble, Worst Director (Bill Condon), Worst Re-make or Sequel and Worst Screen Couple (Lautner and Mackenzie Foy).

In fact, Breaking Dawn: Part 2s perfect sweep was ruined by That’s My Boy. Leading man Adam Sandler and screenwriter David Caspe were both feted by the Razzie committee, having worked created a film that many punters saw as an early favourite to win the Golden Raspberry.

In very much the same way that Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings: Return of the King took home most of the Oscars in 2003, it’s suspected that Breaking Dawn: Part 2‘s ignominious honours were awarded for the trilogy as a whole — a lifetime achievement diss, if you will.

Sadly the Twilight cast were  indisposed and unable to collect their tiny plastic trophies, preventing a repeat of the time Halle Berry actually turned up to collect her Worst Actress prize for Catwoman. She actually graced the event clutching her Oscar, putting on a display of histrionics to rival her Oscars acceptance speech. It was actually pretty cool of her.

 


Feb 25 2013

Hey, is it just us or were the Oscars pretty good this year?

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 12:11 pm

So, did anyone else stay up to watch the Oscars last night?

For a highly ornate ceremony that has to pander to the vanity of the Hollywood elite while coming under fire from tens of thousands of real-time opinions bombing in from Twitter, it seems to have gone pretty well. Argo won Best Picture, Daniel Day-Lewis won Best Actor for his performance in Lincoln, Ang Lee won his second Oscar as a director; there were actually very few surprises when it came to the big prizes. But that didn’t mean that there weren’t plenty of intriguing things happening at the Dolby Theatre last night.

First of all, Seth MacFarlane turned out to be a reasonable host: many people were expecting his jokes to be off-colour — and of course some of them were. A joke connecting cruel and unusual punishment in Django Unchained to Rihanna and Chris Brown drew a gasp from the crowd but by and large, the gags felt like they were in the wheelhouse of a 60s TV comedian. While this might not necessarily be a bad thing, it wasn’t what everyone was expecting from the edgy creator of Family Guy. There were a few of his trademark retro pop-culture references, but very little that could be seen as taboo.

There was a section at the opening that saw MacFarlane talk to William Shatner on a big screen, no doubt celebrating a film career that includes seven Star Trek films and Miss Congeniality. Then there was a recorded segment that saw the Ted director lampoon Sally Field’s Flying Nun character before turning the bit into a Smokey and the Bandit riff. The jokes he peppered between the awards were functional, and he delivered the sharper barbs with little sense of malice. If anything, he seemed a lot greener than his 39 years and incredible fortune would suggest. He was visibly relieved whenever one of his jokes landed — at heart, it looked like he wanted to please the crowd. We found this eagerness much more acceptable than whatever performance art piece James Franco thought he was sleeping through when he co-hosted a few years back.

The rest of the ceremony was incredibly skewed towards music, with Dame Shirley Bassey and Adele performing two of the most famous 007 themes. Bassey might be well old, but she can still hit these songs hard! Barbra Streisand also sang a tribute to film composer Marvin Hamlisch, a giant of the business who passed away in the last year.

There were also song a dance numbers near the beginning that saw Channing Tatum and Charlize Theron pay homage to greats like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Everyone was surely waiting for a punchline where the Magic Mike star would rip off his trousers to reveal sparkly underwear, but it never came. It was, for the most part, a pretty classy affair.

The only really incongruous numbers were when Catherine Zeta-Jones and Jennifer Hudson performed their signature songs from Chicago and Dreamgirls respectively. You would have thought that in a year when they wanted to celebrate movie musicals, they would have chosen numbers from good films instead of ones that have faded away in public memory. But as it turned out, the ceremony’s producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron were also producers of Chicago, which meant that they awkwardly organised this tribute in honour of themselves.

Of course this being the Oscars, at around the 3 hour mark the host will start to make jokes about how long the show is, a tradition that’s as old as it is unfunny. MacFarlane: “9 year old Quvenzhane Wallis is here tonight.  And 86 year old Emmanuelle Riva, who was nine when this show started.”

In an effort to tighten up the show, the producers chose the Jaws theme to play recipients off when their speeches ran long. While this idea might have seemed funny in concept, they only really used it to run-off an effects supervisor trying to talk about the serious bankruptcy of a large visual FX company. On another occasion, Searching for Sugar Man director Malik Benjelloul was thanking the subject of his documentary when his mic was cut.

This unquestionably irked a lot of folk, as it meant that the Oscars were patently sending out mixed messages: while the presenters were waxing lyrical about the importance of technicians, sound mixers and makeup artists  –at how film is a collaborative medium– the Jaws theme was sending a definite message to all non-celebrities that they should just shut the f*** up and know their place.

Throw in a couple of minor blunders involving the cast of The Avengers ignoring chunks of copy from the auto-cue and a slightly misconceived idea to get Melissa McCarthy and Paul Rudd to do some awkward comedy onstage. Oh yeah, and  there was the small matter of Michelle Obama being beamed in by Satellite to announce Best Picture. These are all the sort of things that make live television events so exciting to watch.

But enough of what we think — what did you make of the Oscars ceremony last night? We didn’t even get into any of the dresses (although honestly, that’s not really our thing). Were any of them complete sartorial disasters? Should the Fashion Police have been alerted? Let us know on the comments boards below!

 


Feb 25 2013

Oscars: Argo Wins Big, But So Does Ang Lee

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 10:41 am

There were very few big surprises at last night’s Oscar ceremony — especially when it came to awarding prizes. Ben Affleck’s Argo won Best Picture and accepted the prize emotionally; Daniel Day-Lewis made sure that no other actor in his category laboured under the impression that they had even a chance — his acceptance speech was characteristically dry and humble; and Anne Hathaway was given the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her work in a single take of Les Misérables.

The only unforeseen triumph of the evening was Ang Lee ‘s Life of Pi, which took home the most prizes of the evening including Director, Cinematography and Visual Effects. In fact, Lee’s film managed to shut Lincoln out of almost every category with the exception of Best Actor. An adaptation of Yann Martel’s record breaking novel, the film was roundly praised for its use of 3D in telling the story of a young Indian man stuck on a lifeboat with a Bengal Tiger. This marks Lee’s second directing Oscar in an eclectic career that included Brokeback Mountain, The Hulk, The Ice Storm and Sense and Sensibility.

If you were to look at it objectively, Life of Pi was a groundbreaking feat of cinematic storytelling. It was the first film in a long time that made 3D feel essential to the picture. Lee made an incredibly human film that just so happened to feature a whole tonne of visual effects. Lincoln,  while incredibly worthy, is not anywhere near one of Steven Spielberg’s better films. In interviews, The Beard claimed that he dialled-back his personal ticks  in order to serve the story but on the contrary, we found his constantly moving camera and over-use of a John Williams score to be very distracting. And if we dare say it: the movie was a little boring as well.

Christoph Waltz also beat out favourite Tommy Lee Jones to bring home his second Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in Django Unchained. To think that four years ago, he was completely unknown in Hollywood. Quentin Tarantino also picked up his second Academy Award for Original Screenplay, managing to keep the self-aggrandizement down to a minimum in his acceptance speech.

Oscars Winners List (Highlights)

Best Picture: Argo
Amour
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Misérables
Life of Pi
Lincoln
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
Hugh Jackman, Les Misérables
Joaquin Phoenix, The Master
Denzel Washington, Flight

Best Actress: Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
Emmanuelle Riva, Amour
Quvenzhane Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild
Naomi Watts, The Impossible

Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
Other nominees:
Alan Arkin, Argo
Robert De Niro, Silver Linings Playbook
Philip Seymour Hoffman, The Master
Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln

Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway, Les Misérables
Other nominees:
Amy Adams, The Master
Sally Field, Lincoln
Helen Hunt, The Sessions
Jacki Weaver, Silver Linings Playbook

Best Director: Ang Lee, Life of Pi
Other nominees:
Michael Haneke, Amour
David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook
Steven Spielberg, Lincoln
Benh Zeitlin, Beasts of the Southern Wild

Best Original Screenplay: Django Unchained, Quentin Tarantino
Other nominees:
Amour, Michael Hanake
Flight, John Gatins
Moonrise Kingdom, Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola
Zero Dark Thirty, Mark Boal

Best Adapted Screenplay: Argo, Chris Terrio
Other nominees:
Beasts of the Southern Wild, Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin,
Life of Pi, David Magee
Lincoln, Tony Kushner
Silver Linings Playbook, David O. Russell

Best Animated Feature: Brave
Other nominees:
Frankenweenie
ParaNorman
The Pirates! Band of Misfits
Wreck-It Ralph

Check out our Award Winning Movies Collection, why not? You got anything better to do?


Feb 25 2013

Home is Where the Horror is: New Releases Monday 25th Feb 2013

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 7:32 am

Paranormal Activity 4Things are about to get even paranormaler with the 4th entry to this incredibly successful horror franchise. It has everything you could possible want and expect from a Paranormal Activity movie: a scene in which someone tenuously sets up video cameras around the house; long stretches of time when we see regular Americans doing regular American things; and some seriously effective moments of terror. So make sure you lay down a plastic sheet and have a fresh pair of underpants before you hit play on this movie.

FrankenweenieTim Burton returns to his roots in animation with this remake of his own short film from 1984. Stricken by grief when his beloved dog is killed in an accident, young Victor Frankenstein finds a way to harness the elements to bring Sparky back to life. Set in a distinct Burton-esque suburbia, the black-and-white visuals and loving references to classic horror films would presumably put off younger viewers. But Burton has in fact delivered his best and most universally appealing film in over a decade. And it also incidentally features neither Johnny Depp nor Helena Bonham Carter. Coincidence? We think not.

Premium RushIn the high-octane chase movie of the year, Joseph Gordon-Levitt stars as… a bicycle courier? That’s right: ol’ JGL plays a cock-sure fixie enthusiast who’s got to keep an envelope from falling into the hands of corrupt cop Michael Shannon (Boardwalk Empire). We don’t know how much preparation went in to the role or whether they used a lot of CGI; but watching this film, we totally believed that Joseph Gordon-Levitt could actually ride a bike!

Hope Springs

Look, none of us want to believe that people over 60 have sex but it’s the truth! In this comedy starring Tommy Lee Jones and Meryl Streep, they play a married couple whose love life has ground to a halt on account of them being so damn old. Enter: marriage counsellor Steve Carell who leads them by the hand into whole new world of physical and emotional satisfaction. If you ever wanted to see Tommy Lee Jones’ craggy face contorted in sexual ecstasy, then this is your chance!

On The RoadOne of the 20th Century’s most celebrated novels finally makes it to the screen in this film adaptation starring Sam Riley, Garrett Hedlund and Kristen Stewart. For fans of Twilight who haven’t read Kerouac’s book, they’ll be glad to know that the story is about 3 vampires who go on a road trip to discover their connection to their feelings and stuff. The only thing is that they never say out loud that they’re vampires. It’s just heavily implied by the subtext.

Rust & BoneMarion Cotillard continues her streak or heartbreaking performances in this French drama from Jacques Audiard, the director of A Prophet. Contrary to early rumours, it’s the story of an unemployed young man who falls in love with a killer whale trainer and not a buddy movie about two cops named Rusty Sinclair and Dr. Bobbi ‘Bones’ Jones. Rust & Bone is an incredibly powerful film that we cannot recommend highly enough. It’s our film of the week! (Just kidding, we love all our films equally)

Reign of AssassinsIn this critically-praised Chinese martial arts film, Michelle Yeoh stars as a retired assassin from the Ming Dynasty who must protect her new husband from her old gang.  Returning to the wuxia genre for the first time since Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, it’s certainly a pleasure to see Yeoh running up walls and dispatching bad guys again. The promotional material claims the film co-directed by John Woo, but apparently his involvement was largely as a producer and an on-set advisor. Sneaky promotional material… try and pull a fast one on us, will you? Still — the action scenes are wonderfully choreographed and the film will prove to be a real treat for casual film fans and Kung-Fu nuts alike.

For A Good Time, CallIt’s The Odd Couple with a sexy twist in this hit Sundance comedy! When an uptight young girl in New York is evicted by her boyfriend, she’s left with no option but to move in with a free-spirited girl she knew in college. But little does she know that her new roommate works as a phone sex operator! Sexy hijinks abound! With supporting turns from Justin Long and Seth Rogen, this glossy comedy isn’t just your standard issue chick flick. Guys — you have nothing to fear from this movie. Check it out, why not?

El GringoThe British martial artist and star of last week’s Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning is back with another action flick this week! Scott Adkins plays a man who’s holed up in a Mexican town with a bag full of money and a lot of bad guys on his tail!  As in all good straight-to-video movies, Christian Slater turns up at some point to remind us that he’s keeping busy! Imagine a violent exploitation version of No Country for Old Men and you’ve got something a lot like El Gringo.

For more of the latest movies, check out our New Release.


Feb 22 2013

‘Blancanieves’ Trailer: Spain makes their own silent movie, flips the bird to France

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 10:11 am

Okay, rewind to about a year ago. Michel Hazanavicius’ The Artist had taken every film award under the sun including the Oscar for Best Picture. It was the talk of the town — a silent film that paid homage to the early days of Hollywood while still telling an incredibly accessible story; it was just the second silent film to win Best Picture and the only French film to win ever Best Picture. It was truly a great day for French cinema.

Cut to: A darkened room filled with clutter and covered in mould. A SMALL TELEVISION flickers in the corner showing images of French people storming the stage at the Academy Awards. In front of this TV is an emaciated, BEARDED FIGURE. His fingernails have grown long and filthy; he is surrounded by jars of his own urine. He seethes with jealousy at the sight of the smiling Frenchies on the telly. This man is the Spanish film industry.

In his mind, he has already started to build a plan… he will find a way to get the best of those French people. He will make his OWN black and white movie that make The Artist look like MICHAEL BAY’S PEARL HARBOUR! It will be DOUBLY SILENT! And it will win TWICE as many Best Picture Oscars as The Artist! And it will be full of wonderful SPANISH THINGS like matadors and it will feature something like FIVE TIMES the number of beautiful women!

And so presumably began the development process on Blancanieves

Now don’t get us wrong, Blancanieves does look to be a beautiful piece of work that puts a twist on a beloved fairy tale ( the title translates to ‘Snow White’ in English). It’s been acclaimed at festivals and by critics and it could be an absolute masterpiece for all we know. But its core conceit is so completely ripped-off from The Artist that it would be impossible to judge it on its own merits.

It would be like us prancing into an Apple store, shouting: “Hey everyone! I’ve invented a new product! It’s called the eyePad! I know you think it’s just like the iPad, but it’s not. It’s better. Because it IS and because it’s SPANISH!”


Feb 21 2013

Ben Affleck’s early film re-surfaces on the web and is understandably terrible

Tag: blinkboxblinkbox @ 10:23 am

Ben Affleck’s Oscar-nominated film Argo is expected to take away the big prize this Sunday. Nominated  as a producer alongside George Clooney and Grant Heslov, this would not be Affleck’s first Oscar: how quickly we forget his prize-winning script for Good Will Hunting, shared with co-star Matt Damon. The very fact that he missed out on a nomination for Best Director is perhaps the biggest story at this year’s awards – after all, Affleck has built a solid reputation behind the camera with Gone Baby Gone, The Town and now Argo.

However, very few people realise that Gone Baby Gone was not in fact his directorial debut.

Ecco: this short film from 1993. Entitled I Killed My Lesbian Wife, Ηung Ηer on a Μeathook & Νow I Have a Three-Picture Deal with Disney, the film — much like Argo– is a satire of Hollywood, apparently. It revolves around a crazed director who pretty much does everything that’s mentioned in the above title.

It’s strange now to think that film-makers of yore were allowed to experiment with short films and learn from their mistakes, free from judgement and derision. But not in the YouTube generation! No, no! Nowadays, all your failures are uploaded straight into The Cloud where they can forever be recalled at the touch of a button and used as a weapon to belittle you. How dare you ever have ambitions that exceed your current level of ability!

The only upside for Affleck is that his work here is not super-terrible. Young Ben has a decent sense of framing and stays away from the film student habit of cutting away every other second. In fact, Affleck’s direction is perhaps the least awful part of this movie –  a back-handed compliment akin to saying that the best thing about having SARS is all the vomiting you get to do.

[source: /Film]