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A Beautiful Video Compilation of Every Best Cinematography Winner

Best Cinematography Winner

This is splendid. YouTube channel Burger Fiction has put together a beautiful compilation video of every Best Cinematography winner at the Oscars from 1927 to 2015, when it was award to Emmanuel Lubezki of The Revenant, a back-to-back win after Birdman. For admirers of cinematography, this is a breathtaking and awe-inspiring video. And it just makes me want to watch everything all over again. From Cleopatra, The Thief Of Bagdad, Ben-Hur, Doctor Zhivago, Dance With Wolves, Braveheart, The Aviator, Couching Tiger Hidden Dragon, There Will Be Blood to Inception, there's so many excellent films awarded in this category.

 Posted February 3 in Awards, Feat, To Watch | 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

A Surprise Appearance by Nicolas Cage Made 'C4GED' Unforgettable

C4GED - Nicolas Cage

Nicolas Cage is a unique talent in the acting world. His performances often give us something to talk about regardless of the quality of the film surrounding that performance, and it creates an air of excitement that follows the actor wherever he's seen. This is exactly why, for the past four years, the Alamo Drafthouse has programmed a day of movies in Cage's honor. Entitled CAGED (or "C4GED" for this year's program) the day, usually coordinated by Tough Guy Cinema programmer Greg MacLennan and in honor of Cage's 53rd birthday, treats movie-going fans to five, surprise titles all headlined by a memorable Nicolas Cage performance. Every year MacLennan has invited Cage to attend, and it was for seemingly this final year of CAGED that we were all witness to the biggest surprise of them all. Nicolas Cage actually showed up.

 Posted January 30 in Discuss, Events, Feat | Comments

Watch: Video of The Silhouettes of Cinematographer Roger Deakins

The Silhouettes of Roger Deakins

The use of silhouettes in cinematography can be powerful and evocative. One of the masters of silhouettes is cinematographer Roger Deakins, who has earned 13 Academy Award nominations over three decades (but never actually won one yet). One Perfect Shot video editor H. Perry Horton put together this compilation titled "Paint it Black: The Silhouettes of Roger Deakins" profiling some of his best silhouette shots. There's footage from Skyfall, True Grit, Sicario, Assassination of Jesse James, The Hurricane, Jarhead, Prisoners, The Shawshank Redemption, and even the new Blade Runner (because why not?). Watch below.

 Posted January 29 in Feat, To Watch | Comments

Looking Back: Alex's Top 10 Favorite Films of 2016 - In 'La La' Love

Alex's Top 10 - La La Land

"Without love, what reason is there for anything?" What a year. Admittedly, it's always a challenge for me to put together a Top 10 list, just because there's never enough time to watch (and rewatch) everything. That said, I fell head-over-heels in love with a number of movies in 2016 and it was easy to put them on this list. I learned so much from my Favorite Films of 2016. Paterson taught me to love poetry (and write some of my own). La La Land reminded me that dancing is the key to life, and jazz is awesome. Captain Fantastic taught me to always seek the truth. Pete's Dragon reminded me that sometimes we must believe in magic. I'm invigorated by how much movies often affect me, and the more emotional I get, the more I love them.

 Posted January 18 in Feat, Lists, Looking Back | Comments

Sundance 2017: The 10 Most Anticipated Films We Can't Wait to See

2017 Sundance Film Festival

Back to Sundance we go for another year of discovery. What's on the line-up this year? Out of the 120+ films showing at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival, I've chosen 10 that I'm looking forward to seeing the most. To keep things well balanced, I've chosen 5 feature films and 5 documentaries from the line-up. There are so many films playing at the fest, and so many I'll end up seeing (30+), that this is a quick list to get everyone acquainted with some of the work premiering in 2017 (and why I'm so excited for these). From docs about free speech and doping, to features about life after death. Nothing like watching movies in the mountains.

 Posted January 16 in Documentaries, Feat, Indies, Sundance 17 | Comments

Watch: Video Essay on Scorsese Asks 'Is God Watching in All His Films?'

Scorsese's God Watching in All His Films

Perfectly timed with release of latest religious epic directed by Martin Scorsese, titled Silence, which is slowly expanding to more theaters this month, is a video essay on religious themes in Scorsese's films. Titled "God's Point of View", the video proposes the simple question: "Is God watching in all Marty's films?" There is no narration, instead the video uses footage from almost every single Scorsese film to present the possibility that Scorsese always includes scenes in his film from the point-of-view of God. But how? And why? His focus is on the choice to shoot some scenes looking straight down at characters in times of their greatest struggle, accompanied by the music of Max Richter. A must watch for fans of Scorsese and cinema.

 Posted January 8 in Discuss, Feat, To Watch | Comments

Watch: Movie Rewind 2016 - Another Look Back at This Year's Movies

Movie Rewind 2016 Video

"Who's with me on this?" Another new retrospective video to watch just before we wrap up 2016. This one is from fellow movie blog We Got This Covered, and features footage from most of the big Hollywood movies in 2016. Titled "Movie Rewind 2016", edited by "Whiplash Dynamo", this takes a look back at the year in movies, and some of the important moments from them. More then anything, these video retrospectives are a good way to remind you how many great movies (and not so great) there were. And it's a reminder to catch up on a few of them you still haven't seen yet, or to go back and rewatch the ones you love the most. Enjoy!

 Posted December 28 in Feat, To Watch | Comments

Interview: 'La La Land' Director Damien Chazelle on Making a Musical

Damien Chazelle Interview

"I wanted the movie to be a love letter to not just dreams, but to the kinds of dreams that society often mocks." He's only 31 years old, but has already made two of my favorite movies. Damien Chazelle is the writer/director of Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench, Whiplash (from 2014) and this year's La La Land, an exuberant and exciting musical that is my #1 movie of the year. La La Land premiered to rave reviews at the Venice, Telluride, and Toronto Film Festivals this fall and is now playing in theaters nationwide. I was lucky enough to catch up with Chazelle at the Telluride Film Festival and sit down to talk about making La La Land. I was still on a high from the movie, and was very excited to chat with him about everything - from Ryan Gosling's piano playing, to capturing Los Angeles, to making sure this success doesn't go to his head.

 Posted December 22 in Feat, Interview, Telluride 16 | Comments

Watch: David Ehrlich's 'The 25 Best Films of 2016' Video Countdown

The 25 Best Films of 2016

"City of stars, there's so much that I can't see…" It's here! One of the annual must-see best of the year lists is actually a video countdown made by my colleague David Ehrlich (follow him @davidehrlich). He counts down his 25 best films of the year in a video edited together with footage and music from each of the films. This is such an entertaining way to count down the best cinema of 2016, and it always makes me want to watch each one of these (even the ones I've seen before). There's so many great films on Ehrlich's list this year - from Jackie to La La Land to The Fits to Moonlight, and yes, even Swiss Army Man is superb. Enjoy.

 Posted December 6 in Discuss, Feat, To Watch | Comments

Interview: 'La La Land' Star Emma Stone on the Evolution of Her Acting

Emma Stone

"I feel very excited as of late for what's to come, whether it works or not." I can't say enough how much I adore Damien Chazelle's musical La La Land. It's an exhilarating cinematic experience, full of so much joy and happiness, along with superb dancing and exuberant singing and beautiful sets and gorgeous sunsets. Aside from Ryan Gosling, the other co-star of La La Land is Emma Stone. Her first big break out role was playing Jules in Superbad back in 2007, and over the nearly 10 years since she's earned an Academy Award nomination (for Birdman) and worked with some of the best filmmakers around. I was lucky to spend 15 minutes chatting with Emma about her career and her work on La La Land and it was an absolute delight.

 Posted December 2 in Feat, Interview, Telluride 16 | Comments

Watch: Adam Savage Tours Peter Jackson's Amazing Prop Collection

Peter Jackson's Movie Props

Want to geek out with Adam Savage and Peter Jackson? A video from Adam Savage's website Tested has debuted that involves Savage stepping inside of Peter Jackson's prop warehouse. Guillermo del Toro's massive collection has been in the news the most recently with his exhibition at LACMA, but Jackson has a collection of props and movie items that might rival that one. Savage and Jackson spend most of their time in this video examining the HAL 9000 faceplate from 2001, but there's other cool things hidden around. You can see one of the Ray Harryhausen skeletons from Jason and the Argonauts, and a Vogon from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, too. Jackson says he collects things from films that inspired him as a kid.

 Posted November 25 in Cool Stuff, Feat, To Watch | Comments

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LAST YEAR'S TOP 10

Alex's Top 10 - 2016
1. La La Land
2. Paterson
3. Arrival
4. Captain Fantastic
5. 20th Cent. Women
6. Pete's Dragon
7. Jackie
8. Kubo & Two Strings
9. Everybody Wants
10. Wilderpeople
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Jeremy's Top 10 - 2016
1. Moonlight
2. The Handmaiden
3. High-Rise
4. Elle
5. Arrival
6. Kubo & Two Strings
7. 13th
8. Jackie
9. Toni Erdmann
10. The Witch
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