EDITORIALS

Cannes 2017: Accepting the Challenge of Viewing Provocative Cinema

The Square Cannes

Challenge accepted. What kind of world would we live in if there were not any art, or books, or discussions that made us question our own beliefs. This kind of intelligent provocation is how we grow, and learn, and progress, and step forward together as people from different countries and different cultures all over the world. Over the last few days at the Cannes Film Festival, cinephiles and critics have been treated to a few unique films that challenge the audience. These are the kind of films that are designed to deliberately challenge viewers, to make them feel uncomfortable, or upset, or angry, or frustrated. Great artists know that it's possible to create work that challenges us in just the right ways, that makes us think and question ourselves as a process of learning, and critiquing who we are. And it's refreshing to come across these films.

 Posted May 25 in Cannes 17, Editorial | Comments

Watching Films Now? Why We Still Care About the Cannes Film Festival

Cannes Film Festival

"The most amazing thing is that every single person who sees a movie, not necessarily one of my movies, brings a whole set of unique experiences. Now, through careful manipulation and good storytelling, you can get everybody to clap at the same time, to hopefully laugh at the same time, and to be afraid at the same time." (–Steven Spielberg) With the world the way it is right now, why should we care about movies? Why does anyone want to hear about cinema when there's so much bad happening all around, when there's so much else to worry about? As I make my way to the 70th Cannes Film Festival, I have an answer to this question that has been on my mind for a few weeks ever since a quote first popped up on Twitter. And it's a vital reminder of how important it is to still give time to cinema, art, & entertainment no matter what.

 Posted May 17 in Cannes 17, Editorial | Comments

Rebooting 'The Matrix' Furthers Hollywood's Obsession with Nostalgia

The Matrix

Everything old is new again. It was revealed this week that Warner Bros is currently considering rebooting The Matrix and making a new series of movies. Keanu Reeves had hinted at the possibility of returning for a fourth Matrix for some time. However, WB appears to be interested in forging a new path. In a world full of endless remakes, sequels and reinterpretations, a Matrix re-imagining seems wholly unnecessary. So let's explore why The Matrix needs to be revisited, but not rebooted. It shouldn't come as much of a surprise that a film as revered and respected as The Matrix would get a reboot. Even a film as treasured as The Lion King is getting a live-action do-over. So let's explore why The Matrix needs to be revisited, but not rebooted.

 Posted March 16 in Discuss, Editorial, Sci-Fi | Comments

Hugh Jackman's Final Wolverine Movie Explores 'Logan' for First Time

Hugh Jackman as Logan

"Nature made me a freak. Man made me a weapon. And God made it last too long." Hugh Jackman has made nine appearances as the Wolverine over seventeen years. In that time, I don't think we've really ever gotten to know who Wolverine is until Logan this year. It is Jackman's definitive, and coincidentally final, performance as the feral mutant. It's hard to realize that it took nine movies and nearly two decades to finally understand what drives this hulking, angry loner. However, let's examine how Logan, even though it marks Hugh Jackman's final time playing Wolverine, actually feels like the first real Wolverine movie yet.

 Posted March 5 in Discuss, Editorial, Marvel | Comments

Berlinale 2017: Exploring Berlin's Many Movie Palaces Around the City

Berlinale 2017

I love movie theaters. Every time I walk into one, I get the feeling I'm at home again. They are my places of worship, they are my cathedrals, they are my palaces. Every last city in the world has their own unique set of movie theaters, usually with an extensive and interesting history behind each one. Over the last 10 days of the 2017 Berlin Film Festival (aka "Berlinale") I was able to explore a number of different venues for screenings all over the city. I really love Berlin, and it's now my home where I live, but I'm still exploring and still going to places I've never been before. Looking back over this year's festival, I wanted to highlight a few of the gorgeous movie palaces I visited and share some photos of these places, since they're all so lovely.

 Posted February 20 in Berlinale, Editorial, Feat | Comments

Back-to-Back Festivals - Kicking Off Berlinale Weeks After Sundance

Berlinale 2017

From the very snowy streets of Park City, to the freezing streets of Berlin. Kicking off this week is the 67th Berlin Film Festival, better known as Berlinale. This is my 4th year in a row covering the Berlin Film Festival, this time as a local resident of Berlin, but it's still just as exciting. Taking place only two weeks after Sundance, this picks up where that left off and continues the enthusiasm and excitement for new cinema by offering a fine selection of European films. This year's biggest world premiere is perhaps James Mangold's Logan, at the very end of the festival, though there are plenty of other films showing over the next 10 days. I may not be recovered from Sundance yet, but that doesn't mean I'm not excited to jump into another fest.

 Posted February 8 in Berlinale, Editorial | Comments

Sundance 2017: Alex's 7 Favorite Films - The Best of This Year's Festival

Sundance 2017 - Call Me By Your Name

The 2017 Sundance Film Festival has finally come to an end and to put a wrap on things and finalize our nearly two weeks of coverage, it's time to present our Best of the Fest list. I was able to see a total of 36 films across 10 days, but I couldn't catch everything and missed a few films getting lots of buzz (Novitiate, Where is Kyra?, Thoroughbred). I saw a total of 8 documentaries, so instead of separating docs and features this year, I decided to present one big list of my 7 favorite films (in honor of it being 2017). My #1 by a mile is Luca Guadagnino's Call Me By Your Name, I love this film so much. It will likely end up on my Top 10 of the year, but many other films from this fest are worth seeing when they come your way. Let's get into it.

 Posted January 31 in Editorial, Feat, Sundance 17 | Comments

The Top 7 Directors Who Could Replace Ben Affleck on 'The Batman'

The Batman

The trades were predicting it for a few weeks. Ben Affleck was even hinting at it for a while. Now it's official. Warner Bros and Ben Affleck announced together on Monday night that Ben Affleck will not be directing The Batman movie as previously planned. Affleck will remain on the project as a producer and star. With Affleck no longer directing the film, there's already a long list of possible candidates who could replace him. Variety reports that Warner Bros already has a shortlist, and there's going to be immense speculation as to who will be on that list. So we decided to put together our own dream list of directors who could replace Affleck on The Batman and make a kick ass, dark, yet different movie about the World's Greatest Detective.

 Posted January 31 in DC Movies, Discuss, Editorial | Comments

Sundance Blog: Another 34 Films in 2017 - Dancing Through Cinema

Sundance 2017

Another 34 films screened. Lots of tacos (hat tip to El Chubasco). Tons and tons of snow. Good friends. Fun interviews. One blogger party. I love Sundance so much. I just wrapped up my 11th year at the Sundance Film Festival, Robert Redford's snowy film festival in Park City, Utah. January is a tough month for most people. After the joys of the holidays in December, the first month of the year is so cold and quiet and depressing. But I'm lucky to be able to attend Sundance, which helps me get through January quickly. I get to watch some of the best films made by some of the most passionate, dedicated, ingenious filmmakers, and spend 10 days romping through the snow, catching up with some of my best friends and freezing my ass off.

 Posted January 30 in Editorial, Indies, Sundance 17 | Comments

Sundance Blog: 2017 is the Snowiest Year at Sundance in a Long Time

Sundance 2017

The snow first started falling in Park City on Thursday, and it didn't stop until Tuesday. I was hoping for a snowy Sundance this year, but not this much snow. The 2017 Sundance Film Festival has been one of the snowiest Sundances in a long time. I've been attending for 11 years, and I can't remember it being as snowy and wet and cold as this year. Everyone is talking about it, even Sundance Director John Cooper, and pretty much every last attendee who has to trudge through the piles of snow and slippery sidewalks to get to screenings around Park City, Utah. But, of course, it's the snow that makes this a magical festival unlike any other and no matter what, the show must go on. So we bundle up, throw on some boots, and head back out.

 Posted January 27 in Editorial, Sundance 17 | Comments

Looking Back: Jeremy Picks the 10 Best Soundtracks/Scores of 2016

10 Best Soundtracks / Scores of 2016

More often than not a good soundtrack in a movie can be just as captivating as the visuals in which it accompanies. We live within the world of that film as we experience watching it, but a good soundtrack – composed score or curated list of songs – can allow us to reengage with the film on a purely auditory level sometimes even offering up an entirely new perspective. It's why this list is always such a joy to put together at the end of any year (review my previous soundtrack picks for the Best of 2014 and Best of 2013). Listed below are my Top 10 Soundtracks/Scores of 2016, and, as always, it's a fun list to put together. These are the scores and song lists I will surely be listening to in the coming months, the soundtracks that are every bit as memorable as the films themselves. (You can also find my Top 10 Films of 2016 here.) Enjoy!

 Posted January 13 in Discuss, Editorial, Looking Back | Comments

Editorial: Warner Bros Needs to Expand the DCEU Beyond Batman

Ben Affleck - Batman

At the climax of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Superman has literally fallen into the arms of his love, Lois Lane. The ending is far from romantic, however, as Batman and Wonder Woman stand beside the slain hero, heads bowed mournfully. Who knew this downer of an ending would signify more than just defeated heroes, it also acts as an analogy for the entire trajectory of DC Comics on film. By the time Suicide Squad rolled around, you could argue the DC Extended Universe had been put on suicide watch. For Ben Affleck, what started as a co-starring role has morphed into possibly being the DCEU's only saving grace.

 Posted January 10 in DC Movies, Discuss, Editorial | Comments

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