Category Archives: Thought

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Thought – 2019 Oscar Preview

Category : Thought

Of course it’s too early to make Oscar predictions; the nominees are months away from being announced.  Some of what may be the best films of the year haven’t even come out yet.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about it anyway and make guesses based on almost nothing.  At the very least, here is a list of movies that deserve a watch, as they might be in the Oscar conversation soon.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. A Star is Born
  2. If Beale Street Could Talk
  3. Roma
  4. The Favourite
  5. Beautiful Boy
  6. Green Book
  7. First Man
  8. BlacKkKlansman
  9. The Front Runner
  10. Capernaum
  11. Black Panther
  12. Boy Erased
  13. Backseat
  14. Destroyer
  15. Mary Queen of Scots
  16. Widows
  17. Can You Ever Forgive Me?
  18. Peterloo
  19. The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
  20. Ad Astra
  21. Eighth Grade
  22. The Happy Prince
  23. At Eternity’s Gate
  24. Mary Poppins Returns
  25. Bohemian Rhapsody
  26. The Old Man & the Gun
  27. On the Basis of Sex
  28. Crazy Rich Asians
  29. Wildlife
  30. A Quiet Place

Snubbed: Private Life, Goldstone, Mary and the Witch’s Flower, Avengers: Infinity War, Mission: Impossible – Fallout, Leave No Trace, Game Night, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Solo, A Futile and Stupid Gesture, The Polka King, Annihilation, Lean on Pete, 7 Days in Entebbe, Don’t Worry He Won’t Get Far on Foot, Incredibles 2.

 


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Thought – How Will The New Category Change The Oscars?

Category : Thought

The Academy made major news this summer with the announcement of a brand new category for the future of the Oscars. The ceremony widely viewed as the most prestigious in the cinematic world will now recognize “Outstanding Achievement in Popular Film”, which is being boiled down to “Most Popular Film” across the internet. It’s the biggest change made regarding the show in years, and while reactions have been largely negative, it’s going to shake things up in interesting ways.

A Bigger Audience

It would seem that the entire point of the shake-up of the Oscars is to bring in a bigger audience for TV viewership. Despite some compelling film lineups and excellent hosting performances by Jimmy Kimmel, ratings have been down in recent years. And one logical explanation as to why is that not that many people have seen the award contenders, relative to more “popular” films. That is, more people tend to watch spring and summer superhero movies, sequels, and comedies than films like The Shape Of Water and Moonlight (the two most recent Best Picture winners) – to say nothing of past winners like Birdman and The Artist. It just stands to reason that if more popular films are being recognized, there are more potential audience members.

A More Active Betting Market

If you don’t personally like to wager you may not realize it, but the Oscars actually make for a relatively active betting market. Because of the prevalence of opportunity online, betting sites offer strategy and tips for a range of activities that fall outside the bounds of traditional sports, and include things like the Oscars (or, you know, what color hat a celebrity might wear at a Royal Wedding, etc.). Betting seems to be what draws some people to the Oscars to begin with, but as with the above points about a bigger audience, there figure to be more people wagering if there are movies being recognized that more people have seen. It should add some extra buzz to the proceedings.

More Attention For Popular Movies

Maybe this seems blindingly obvious, but the point here isn’t just that popular movies will get a category of their own. It’s that in all likelihood this one category will elevate the films in additional ways. For instance, let’s say Creed had been nominated for Most Popular Film a few years ago. Might Sylvester Stallone have had a better shot at the Best Supporting Actor nomination people felt he deserved? Might we just have seen more clips from the movie, or presenters related to it, throughout the night? Major nominees get attention in more ways than one, and that will be the case for the movies in this category as well.

More Obscure Best Picture Selections

The Academy has made it clear that Most Popular and Best Picture aren’t mutually exclusive, meaning a film can be nominated to both categories. If we assume this is somewhat unlikely to happen often, however, there’s a chance that as more popular films split off into their own category, more obscure or “artsy” films could flood Best Picture. Looking at last year’s nominees for instance, imagine that Dunkirk, Get Out, and The Post had been nominated for “Most Popular” and not for “Best Picture”. That would leave three spots open for more films to join what would at that point be a fairly obscure lineup – relatively speaking – of candidates. This is something that may well happen as a sort of unintended consequence of the new category.

More Competitive Acting Categories

This goes hand-in-hand with the idea mentioned above about more attention being given to popular movies, even beyond the new category itself. There’s a lot of great acting that happens in popular, but not “Oscar-y” movies. And there’s a chance that more consideration of popular projects could force Academy voters to weight such performances more heavily. We could see more examples like Johnny Depp earning a Best Actor nomination for Pirates Of The Caribbean, which at the time was something of an aberration (and, for the record, a thoroughly deserving nomination).


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Thought – 2018 Oscar Picks

Category : Thought

Sunday March 4th, 2018, the Academy Awards!  I’ve very excited about this year’s Oscars; there are a ton of excellent films represented, as well as the annual snubs left out.  It should be a great show, with Jimmy Kimmel hosting, and I’m sure I’ll be reacting live during the event on Twitter (@OlieCoen).  You can check out my Oscars page for a complete listing of the nominees in the six major categories, but here are both my predictions and my picks for the best films of 2017:

Best Actor

Best Supporting Actor

Best Actress

Best Supporting Actress

Best Director

Best Picture

 


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Thought – 2018 Oscar Update

Category : Thought

Three months ago I posted a list of 30 potential Best Picture Oscar contenders, plus a list of snubbed films that deserved consideration.  Since then, I’ve updated the list with reviews as I’ve seen the movies, including any personal favorites that hadn’t previously made the list.  As the Academy Awards draw closer, let’s take a look at an updated watchlist, a list that has taken into consideration those undervalued films that have risen up the ranks and those over-hyped movies that have taken a tumble.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. The Post
  2. Dunkirk
  3. Lady Bird
  4. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
  5. The Shape of Water
  6. Call Me By Your Name
  7. Mudbound
  8. Darkest Hour
  9. Phantom Thread
  10. The Florida Project
  11. Blade Runner 2049
  12. I, Tonya
  13. Get Out
  14. Last Flag Flying
  15. Detroit
  16. Battle of the Sexes
  17. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  18. Coco
  19. Molly’s Game
  20. Downsizing
  21. Stronger
  22. Wonderstruck
  23. Mother!
  24. Victoria and Abdul
  25. The Beguiled
  26. Logan
  27. The Greatest Showman
  28. All the Money in the World
  29. Wind River
  30. Wonder Wheel
  31. The Big Sick
  32. Hostiles
  33. Wonder Woman
  34. War for the Planet of the Apes
  35. The Disaster Artist
  36. Novitiate
  37. The Meyerowitz Stories
  38. Beauty and the Beast
  39. Breathe
  40. First They Killed My Father

Snubbed: The Current War, Frantz, Split, A Cure for Wellness, The Killing of a Sacred Deer, Good Time, The Square, Brad’s Status, BPM, A Ghost Story, Cars 3, Wakefield, The Glass Castle, From the Land of the Moon, Jane, It Comes at Night, Okja, The Little Hours, The Lovers, The Foreigner, Thor:Ragnarok, Betting on Zero, Take Me, The Lost City of Z, Berlin Syndrome, Crown Heights, Lucky, Baby Driver, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Graduation, Win It All, The Trip to Spain, War Machine, Life (2017), The Boss Baby.

Bumped Off: Suburbicon, Goodbye Christopher Robin, Mary Magdalene, Murder on the Orient Express.

 


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Thought – 2018 Oscar Preview

Category : Thought

Of course it’s too early to make Oscar predictions; the nominees are months away from being announced.  Some of what may be the best films of the year haven’t even come out yet.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about it anyway and make guesses based on almost nothing.  At the very least, here is a list of movies that deserve a watch, as they might be in the Oscar conversation soon.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com

ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. The Post
  2. Downsizing
  3. Darkest Hour
  4. Mudbound
  5. Dunkirk
  6. Phantom Thread
  7. Blade Runner 2049
  8. Last Flag Flying
  9. Battle of the Sexes
  10. Call Me By Your Name
  11. Detroit
  12. Suburbicon
  13. The Shape of Water
  14. Wonderstruck
  15. Goodbye Christopher Robin
  16. Coco
  17. Mother!
  18. The Greatest Showman
  19. Wonder Wheel
  20. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
  21. The Beguiled
  22. The Florida Project
  23. Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  24. Molly’s Game
  25. Victoria and Abdul
  26. Wind River
  27. War for the Planet of the Apes
  28. Logan
  29. Mary Magdalene
  30. Murder on the Orient Express

Snubbed: The Current War, Lady Bird, Get Out, Frantz, Split, A Cure for Wellness, The Killing of a Sacred Deer, The Meyerowitz Stories, I, Tonya, Good Time, The Square, Brad’s Status, BPM, A Ghost Story, Cars 3, Wakefield, The Glass Castle, From the Land of the Moon, Jane, It Comes at Night, Okja, The Little Hours, The Lovers, The Foreigner, Hostiles, Thor:Ragnarok, The Big Sick, The Disaster Artist, Betting on Zero, Take Me, The Lost City of Z, Berlin Syndrome, Crown Heights, Lucky, Baby Driver, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Wonder Woman, Graduation, Win It All, The Trip to Spain, War Machine, Beauty and the Beast (2017), Life (2017), Boss Baby.


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Thought – Republican Hero

Category : Thought

A Republican in Congress needs to step up and save our country.  That they are reluctant to do so is mind-boggling, or perhaps shows their level of fear that their constituency has not yet arrived at the place presently occupied by a majority of the country, a place of understanding that Donald Trump is the worst possible President.  He is both an erratic man and a horrendous representative of the core values that our nation is supposed to honor, a strange and dangerous combination that is exemplified every time he opens his mouth.  Most of us understand this, his approval rating reflects that, but Congressional Republicans continue to work alongside him and for his agenda, a move I quite simply can’t understand.

And then there’s Russia, which is a toxic subject at best and a treasonous one at worst.  You & I have no idea what has happened, who colluded with who, which shape the investigation into all this will take, all we can do it bob along as the lawmakers and executives of our country stumble through the briar patch and hope not to get blinded.  But something smells rotten, anyone with a functional, political nose can tell you that, and it only further convinces most of us that the man running the show needs to be replaced as soon as is humanly possible.

I consider myself a Stolid Democrat, not a Bleeding Heart Liberal by any means.  I am level-headed, I vote unemotionally, but this past year’s election was a horse of a different color.  Donald Trump is a terrible person and a threat to our world.  His lunacy and his egotism make him an unstable leader; this was clear in the primaries, the debates, and is all the more crystal now.  His immediate removal from office should be of the highest concern to us all, Democrat or Republican, and differences need to be set aside until we find the legal means with which to do so.

All we need now is a high-ranking official to take a stand.  It can’t be someone who has been fighting the GOP all along, a person with bias who could be said to be tasting sour grapes.  We need a Republican with the balls to speak out and the ability to convince Trump supporters that the man they wanted as President because he could shake up the common order has become much more than a liability, has begun to vibrate with the dark powers of racism, nationalism, and despotism.

The closest we’ve come are John Kasich’s comments and John McCain’s wagging finger, but neither is enough to veer our juvenile President from his current path, to demand accountability for his actions, to uncover the truth behind the election.  What we need is a strong Republican to plant his or her feet and to say that the charade is over.  It’s not melodramatic to say that this person could go down as a hero who saved our country from disaster, who called out loudly when others were being silent, who risked losing rural votes, who did what was right.  As a Democrat, even I would applaud this person, I would follow them if they seemed to know the way, and I think many others would too.  It seems so simple and so advantageous, I don’t understand what they’re waiting for, and I won’t believe that the majority of Republicans actually think Donald Trump is both innocent of all crimes and mentally fit for office.  It’s time for someone to be daring, it’s time for Trump’s base to open their eyes, it’s time for Democrats to help if they can instead of looking forward to 2020; it’s time for a new President.

 


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Thought – 2017 Oscar Picks

Category : Thought

Sunday February 26th, 2017, the Academy Awards!  I’ve very excited about this year’s Oscars; there are a ton of excellent films represented, as well as the annual snubs left out.  It should be a great show, with Jimmy Kimmel hosting, and I’m sure I’ll be reacting live during the event on Twitter (@OlieCoen).  You can check out my Oscars page for a complete listing of the nominees in the six major categories, but here are both my predictions and my picks for the best films of 2016:

Best Actor

Best Supporting Actor

Best Actress

  • Winner – Natalie Portman – Jackie
  • Runner-up – Ruth NeggaLoving
  • My choiceNatalie Portman – Jackie

Best Supporting Actress

Best Director

Best Picture

 


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Thought – 2017 Oscar Update

Category : Thought

Three months ago I posted a list of 30 potential Best Picture Oscar contenders, plus a list of snubbed films that deserved consideration.  Since then, I’ve updated the list with reviews as I’ve seen the movies, including any personal favorites that hadn’t previously made the list.  As the Academy Awards draw closer, let’s take a look at an updated watchlist, a list that has taken into consideration those undervalued films that have risen up the ranks and those overhyped movies that have taken a tumble.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. La La Land
  2. Moonlight
  3. Silence
  4. Fences
  5. Manchester by the Sea
  6. Lion
  7. Arrival
  8. Loving
  9. Hacksaw Ridge
  10. Sully
  11. Hell or High Water
  12. 20th Century Woman
  13. Hidden Figures
  14. Jackie
  15. Florence Foster Jenkins
  16. Patriots Day
  17. Passengers
  18. The Jungle Book
  19. Live By Night
  20. Rogue One
  21. Miss Sloane
  22. Rules Don’t Apply
  23. Toni Erdmann
  24. The Birth of a Nation
  25. Nocturnal Animals
  26. 13th
  27. Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk
  28. The Lobster
  29. Denial
  30. Collateral Beauty

Snubbed: Gold, Bleed For This, Deepwater Horizon, Certain Women, American Honey, Hunt for the Wilderpeople, A Man Called Ove, The Handmaiden, The Dresser, Captain Fantastic, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Swiss Army Man, Kubo and the Two Strings, Finding Dory, Captain America: Civil War, Paterson, The Nice Guys, Complete Unknown, Elvis & Nixon, Indignation, The Neon Demon, Disorder, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, Anthropoid, The Shallows, ARQ, Christine, Last Days in the Desert, Tale of Tales, Star Trek Beyond, Tallulah, Hail Caesar, Deadpool, The Fundamentals of Caring, The BFG, Equals, Come What May, The Invitation, Sausage Party, The Edge of Seventeen, Life Animated, My King, Green Room, Hello My Name is Doris.

Bumped offThe Girl on the Train, Allied, Love & Friendship, Moana, Zootopia, American Pastoral, The Light Between Oceans, All Eyez on Me, The Founder.


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Thought – President Trump

Category : Thought

I truly hope that President Trump is very different from Nominee Trump, that much of what he said on the campaign trail and the way in which he so flippantly insulted so many was just something to rile the crowds, was just over-the-top, doesn’t necessarily represent the kind of leader he will be.

But I refuse to forget his insults, his accusations, and his lies.  Republicans want us to stop whining, to support a fairly elected President, to come together to make America great again? Fuck that.  We aren’t going to forget what happened along the way.

And this is just a sampling, just a few clips from a long line of abuse directed at so many.  This doesn’t even begin to approach the laws that might come into effect under a Trump presidency, or the laws that might be overturned.  Our health insurance deleted, marriage equality removed, Planned Parenthood scrapped, Muslim neighborhoods policed, Mexican families split apart, and an entire government laid at the feet of one party with barely a check.

I for one will not be quiet, admit defeat, and give my support to a man who I have no respect for.  I will show him the same courtesy he showed to so many along the way in order to win, whether or not he attempts to backtrack, change course, wave a Pride flag, and take anti-Muslim talking points off his website.

Too many Democrats & Independents stayed home this election; not me.  Too many Republicans were duped by this man; not me.  And too many people are now calling for us all to stand together, solve problems together, and move on as a country, but I won’t do that.  I can’t forget so quickly what Donald Trump represents, how his supporters feel about those who are different from them, and the enormous step back we will now be taking from the ultimate goal of equal rights & treatment for all.

This person does not represent me, he is not my voice, and no matter how he swivels, I won’t forget this last year.

 


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Thought – 2017 Oscar Preview

Category : Thought

Of course it’s too early to make Oscar predictions; the nominees are months away from being announced.  Some of what may be the best films of the year haven’t even come out yet.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t talk about it anyway and make guesses based on almost nothing.  At the very least, here is a list of movies that deserve a watch, as they might be in the Oscar conversation soon.

This is the AwardsCircuit.com ranking of top possible Academy Award contenders:

  1. Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk
  2. Fences
  3. Loving
  4. La La Land
  5. Manchester by the Sea
  6. Moonlight
  7. The Birth of a Nation
  8. Lion
  9. Arrival
  10. Hidden Figures
  11. Silence
  12. Passengers
  13. 20th Century Woman
  14. American Pastoral
  15. Nocturnal Animals
  16. Florence Foster Jenkins
  17. Sully
  18. The Girl on the Train
  19. The Lobster
  20. Allied
  21. Hell or High Water
  22. Love & Friendship
  23. Miss Sloane
  24. Moana
  25. Zootopia
  26. Patriots Day
  27. The Light Between Oceans
  28. All Eyez on Me
  29. The Founder
  30. Denial

Snubbed: Gold, Rules Don’t Apply, Collateral Beauty, Bleed For This, Rogue One, Deepwater Horizon, Certain Women, The 13th, Hacksaw Ridge, American Honey, Hunt for the Wilderpeople, A Man Called Ove, The Handmaiden, The Dresser, Captain Fantastic, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Swiss Army Man, Jackie, Kubo and the Two Strings, Finding Dory, Captain America: Civil War, Paterson, The Nice Guys, Complete Unknown, Elvis & Nixon, Indignation, The Neon Demon, Disorder, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, Anthropoid, The Shallows, ARQ, Christine, Last Days in the Desert, Tale of Tales, Star Trek Beyond, Tallulah, Hail Caesar, Deadpool, The Fundamentals of Caring, The BFG, Equals, Come What May, The Invitation, Sausage Party, The Edge of Seventeen, Life Animated, My King, Green Room, Hello My Name is Doris.