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View Full Version : The 6th Annual Academy Award Challenge (1/26 - 2/26)


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The Monkees
01-14-12, 01:50 AM
The 6th Annual Academy Award Movie Challenge

http://i231.photobucket.com/albums/ee51/ShadowMark-182/AcademyAward.jpg

Official Rules

-ANY movie that has been NOMINATED or WON an Academy Award counts

-There is NO time limit, meaning it doesn't matter how long or short the item in question is, as long as it has been nominated or won an Academy Award

-You can watch a movie once then count it again if you watch the same film with a commentary

-There WILL BE a separate thread for LISTS ONLY created shortly before the challenge begins.

-You can count the actual Academy Awards Ceremony to be televised on Sunday February 26, 2012 as an entry if you'd like.

-There will be an "In Memoriam" Wild Card option. You can select up to 10 films to watch featuring a celebrity that died during 2011. But only ONE movie per celebrity. For example: You can watch "The Princess Bride" to honor Peter Falk but you cannot watch another Peter Falk movie unless another celebrity that died during 2011 is in it. If that makes sense... The celebrity has to have died in 2011.

-The challenge begins on Thursday January 26, 2012 at 12:00am CST and will end at 11:59pm on Sunday February 26, 2012

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, REMEMBER TO NUMBER YOUR LISTS

***LISTS THREAD*** (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/598360-6th-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-lists-thread.html)

Past Challenges

2011 Rules & Discussion Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/584543-5th-annual-academy-award-challenge-1-27-2-27-a.html)
2011 Lists Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/584992-5th-annual-academy-award-challenge-lists-thread.html)
2010 Rules & Discussion Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/567579-4th-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-2-7-3-7-a.html)
2010 Lists Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/569055-4th-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-lists-thread.html)
2009 Rules & Discussion Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/547216-3rd-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-1-22-2-22-a.html)
2009 Lists Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/548230-3rd-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-lists-go-here.html)
2008 Rules & Discussion Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/522493-2nd-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-1-24-2-24-a.html)
2008 Lists Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/523368-2nd-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-lists-go-here.html#post8450699)
2007 Rules & Discussion Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/movie-talk/488264-1st-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-january-25-2007-february-25-2007-a.html)
2007 Lists Thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/movie-talk/490524-1st-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-lists-go-here.html)

External Links

TCM's 31 Days of Oscar Schedule (http://www.tcm.com/2011/31Days/index.jsp)
Academy Award Database (http://awardsdatabase.oscars.org/ampas_awards/BasicSearchInput.jsp;jsessionid=BDAA7A3A03EBD0087F1B1C2D1249359B.squash) ---> To check if a movie has been nominated or won an Award
2010 In Memoriam List (http://www.oscars.org/academy/members/memoriam.html) ---> To See Who Died During 2010


Checklist

Watch a Film Winner From the Following Decades:

--- 1920:
--- 1930:
--- 1940:
--- 1950:
--- 1960:
--- 1970:
--- 1980:
--- 1990:
--- 2000:

Watch a Winner from the Following Categories:

--- Best Picture:
--- Best Actor:
--- Best Actress:
--- Best Supporting Actor:
--- Best Supporting Actress:
--- Best Director:
--- Best Original Screenplay:
--- Best Adapted Screenplay:
--- Best Art Direction:
--- Best Film Editing:
--- Best Costume Design:
--- Best Original Score:
--- Best Original Song:
--- Best Makeup:
--- Best Foriegn Language Film:
--- Best Animated Film:
--- Best Animated Short:
--- Best Live Action Short:
--- Best Cinematography:
--- Best Sound:
--- Best Sound Effects Editing (or Best Sound Editing):
--- Best Visual Effects:
--- Best Documentary Feature:
--- Best Documentary (Short Subject):

Watch a Movie with the Following Rating:

--- G:
--- PG:
--- PG-13:
--- R:
--- Not Rated

Mao
01-14-12, 02:42 AM
:D

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Thanks for hosting this again...really looking forward to this challenge!

lisadoris
01-14-12, 07:23 AM
I'm already creating my to-watch list!

orlmac
01-14-12, 08:46 AM
I've been working on my to-watch list also. Hoping to watch a lot of the 60's and 70's movies this go round. If anyone knows of a trick to get a list of the academy award winners on netflix streaming I would appreciate it!

shadokitty
01-14-12, 09:14 AM
Looking forward to this challenge. Will create my to watch list as well.

InnocentBlood
01-14-12, 09:31 AM
I don't know why but I missed last year's challenge. So I'm gonna be in for this year's one :)

Indy24LA
01-14-12, 09:50 AM
I have picked up some movies throughout the year for this challenge, can't wait to finally watch them.

davidh777
01-14-12, 09:58 AM
Looking forward to overlapping this with the TV challenge! Well, maybe not, but looking forward to seeing some great movies.

Cardsfan111
01-14-12, 12:42 PM
I've got plenty of options ready to go. Looking forward to it!

Regulus
01-16-12, 09:05 AM
Tonight I'll be watching the film that gave us the winning song for 1947! :D

JerryKILL
01-16-12, 10:00 AM
I always thought the start/stop dates for this challenge were kind of awkward. Why not just make it the entire month of February?

The Monkees
01-16-12, 12:31 PM
I always thought the start/stop dates for this challenge were kind of awkward. Why not just make it the entire month of February?

2 reasons, because I wanted it to end with the Academy Awards ceremony so it's always a month before the ceremony and because February is the shortest month so you wouldn't get as many days as any other challenge.

CardiffGiant
01-21-12, 08:33 PM
Looking forward to it. Been away from the conversations around here for a little bit, but I've always anticipated this challenge. Thanks again for hosting.

darkhawk
01-22-12, 07:38 AM
I'm ready. Little harder to watch as many this year, because I finally found a job after 2 years of searching. But with 3 kids, I know I'll get all the animated and kids movies in.

Trevor
01-22-12, 08:42 AM
Looking forward to this as well. I own all of the winners through ~2009, watched them all chronologically one year for this, and plan to revisit a handful of favorites this year. Still not organized from the move, so only watch a few hours of TV a week, but hope to get in at least 10 films.

Mondo Kane
01-22-12, 04:36 PM
Completed seeing all Best Picture winners in last year's challenge. I guess I'll move on to Nominated Pictures now.

davidh777
01-22-12, 05:10 PM
I'm ready. Little harder to watch as many this year, because I finally found a job after 2 years of searching. But with 3 kids, I know I'll get all the animated and kids movies in.

Congrats :up:

HollywoodLights
01-22-12, 08:02 PM
I'm a total n00b. Could someone explain to me what exactly this is?

Mao
01-22-12, 08:50 PM
Welcome!

First post should explain it all....it's all about watching movies!!!! :D

HollywoodLights
01-22-12, 09:26 PM
So basically you just watch one movie for each category and check em off as you go?

BobO'Link
01-22-12, 10:22 PM
^You simply watch films which were nominated for or won an Academy Award. Any category. Watch as many as you can. Have fun and discuss the films you watched with others. Use of the checklist is *not* required - it's there as a secondary challenge and to possibly help you expand your watching enjoyment.

jmsmath
01-23-12, 01:00 AM
Always one of my favorite challenges of the year, but I've got such a busy February planned, I'll be lucky to get to 20 this year.

CardiffGiant
01-23-12, 03:46 AM
So basically you just watch one movie for each category and check em off as you go?

Check out those links to the Discussion and List Threads from previous years, especially, and that should give you a pretty good idea. There's a general consensus that participation is just about all that is encouraged. Completion of the checklist is optional, the real reward, in my opinion, is getting to discuss some of these films with other people and learning a bit more about what won Academy Awards during which time periods.

Ash Ketchum
01-23-12, 06:24 AM
I'm a total n00b. Could someone explain to me what exactly this is?

Recommended movies you should start with, if you haven't seen them already:

All Quiet on the Western Front (1930 Best Picture winner)
It Happened One Night (winner of the five top awards of 1934, including Best Picture)
Mutiny on the Bounty (1935 Best Picture winner)
Gone with the Wind (1939 Best Picture winner)
Casablanca (1943 Best Picture winner)
The Best Years of Our Lives (1946 Best Picture winner)
Ben-Hur (1959 Best Picture winner)
The Apartment (1960 Best Picture winner)
West Side Story (1961 Best Picture winner)
Lawrence of Arabia (1962 Best Picture winner)
The French Connection (1971 Best Picture winner)

HollywoodLights
01-23-12, 10:54 AM
Thanks for that list. I'll have to check those films out, especially since the only one I've seen is West Side Story.

Giles
01-23-12, 10:58 AM
so this is the discussion not the actual 'list' thread right?

Indy24LA
01-23-12, 04:39 PM
I think I am going to start with The Sound of Music since I have never seen it.

HollywoodLights
01-23-12, 04:41 PM
I think I am going to start with The Sound of Music since I have never seen it.

You've never seen the sound of music? How...what....who......wow. I think that left me utterly speechless. Have you at least seen the Wizard of Oz

davidh777
01-23-12, 08:11 PM
^You simply watch films which were nominated for or won an Academy Award. Any category. Watch as many as you can. Have fun and discuss the films you watched with others. Use of the checklist is *not* required - it's there as a secondary challenge and to possibly help you expand your watching enjoyment.

Check out those links to the Discussion and List Threads from previous years, especially, and that should give you a pretty good idea. There's a general consensus that participation is just about all that is encouraged. Completion of the checklist is optional, the real reward, in my opinion, is getting to discuss some of these films with other people and learning a bit more about what won Academy Awards during which time periods.

Yeah, really the only obligation is to watch eligible movies that you want to watch. Watch as few or as many as you want. A lot of us use the opportunity to finally see things we've always heard about, but we also rewatch the movies we love just because we love 'em.

Also, you can find more info about all the Challenges in the "Official" DVDTalk Challenges Compendium (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/557368-official-dvdtalk-challenges-compendium.html).

And damn, I just saw The Descendants today, too early to count it :sad:

Indy24LA
01-23-12, 08:22 PM
You've never seen the sound of music? How...what....who......wow. I think that left me utterly speechless. Have you at least seen the Wizard of Oz

I've been getting that A LOT :) And yup, I've seen the Wizard of Oz.

HollywoodLights
01-23-12, 08:34 PM
Davidh777: thanks for that link. Took a quick look through, really helped me understand the concept better (and knowing upcoming challenges I'll be able to build the smaller portions of my collection where i feel I'm lacking).

Indy24LA: then I can't be totally let down that you haven't seen the sound of music (I admit I only partially like the film, but it's still a classic that everyone's expected to see at least once. I'm known for letting people down with the list of films I havent seen yet, myself.

Giles
01-23-12, 08:53 PM
And damn, I just saw The Descendants today, too early to count it :sad:

it's been hard trying not to see 'The Artist' prior to next month. My friend keeps bailing on me to see Mission Impossible 4 - maybe by the time he doesn't have work obligations it WILL be February and the movie will have been nominated for editing, sound design or cinematography or something.

Trevor
01-24-12, 08:13 AM
Also, you can find more info about all the Challenges in the "Official" DVDTalk Challenges Compendium (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/557368-official-dvdtalk-challenges-compendium.html).
Thanks for the prod to update the first post a bit. I also really need to finish the tables for all the other Challenges....
And damn, I just saw The Descendants today, too early to count it :sad:
How was it? I haven't seen any of the Oscar-type films this past year. :(

davidh777
01-24-12, 08:35 AM
Davidh777: thanks for that link. Took a quick look through, really helped me understand the concept better (and knowing upcoming challenges I'll be able to build the smaller portions of my collection where i feel I'm lacking).

You're welcome, but I'm glad Trevor just checked in because he really deserves the credit as master of that thread. Guys like him and MinLShaw helped get me past the intimidation factor of people who watch a lot of stuff--it's really not a competition; as already mentioned, it's just about participation and conversation.

it's been hard trying not to see 'The Artist' prior to next month. My friend keeps bailing on me to see Mission Impossible 4 - maybe by the time he doesn't have work obligations it WILL be February and the movie will have been nominated for editing, sound design or cinematography or something.

Both of those are next on my to-see list so I might hold out till we start. :)

Thanks for the prod to update the first post a bit. I also really need to finish the tables for all the other Challenges....

Sorry, didn't mean to trigger the OCD :)

How was it? I haven't seen any of the Oscar-type films this past year. :(

I freaking loved it. I admit I was initially interested by the Hawaiian eye candy (including Shailene Woodley in a bikini), but it was a completely involving character study. Have been meaning to dig up that thread to pitch in.

MrTerrific
01-24-12, 09:30 AM
Disappointed that Andy Serkis didn't get nominated for Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Also kinda stunned that Michael Fassbender and Albert Brooks were snubbed.

Ready to start the Oscar Challenge. Always love this one.

HollywoodLights
01-24-12, 09:51 AM
I'm almost amazed that Real Steel got nominated for something. It's been my belief since day one that that film is essentially rock em sock em robots, the movie. I could be wrong though.

That being said, seeing the list of nominated films I've seen like one of them. I really gOtta catch up lol

gp1086
01-24-12, 09:52 AM
Thinking about doing this - although this month could be pretty busy at work, so not sure how many I'll be able to watch.

I'm guessing the "Lists" thread will be created in the next day or two?

Ash Ketchum
01-24-12, 10:54 AM
Here's a link to the list of this year's nominees, which were announced this morning:
http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118049085/

The only horses I have in this race are DRAGON TATTOO, BRIDESMAIDS, and TRANSFORMERS 3.

davidh777
01-24-12, 12:03 PM
Now I have incentive to see Bridesmaids, I guess

Indy24LA
01-24-12, 05:00 PM
I really wish this challenge started today, what with the nominations being released.

davidh777
01-24-12, 06:25 PM
I'm almost amazed that Real Steel got nominated for something. It's been my belief since day one that that film is essentially rock em sock em robots, the movie. I could be wrong though.


That's what I thought from the trailer but the reviews have been good. Still haven't seen it, though.

I really wish this challenge started today, what with the nominations being released.

I actually thought it was timed from the nominations to the ceremony, but I guess it's a month backward from the ceremony.

The Monkees
01-25-12, 01:46 AM
Lists thread (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/dvd-talk/598360-6th-annual-academy-award-movie-challenge-lists-thread.html) is up!

HollywoodLights
01-25-12, 02:08 AM
What does it mean when people are putting posts in the lists thread that says "Reseved"? Is that just do lists will be higher up?

Cardsfan111
01-25-12, 08:25 AM
What does it mean when people are putting posts in the lists thread that says "Reseved"? Is that just do lists will be higher up?

Everyone who wants to participate posts in the list thread, reserving that spot. As you watch films, you add to your list there. You do so by editing that "reserved" post and updating your list/total.

Trevor
01-25-12, 08:34 AM
What does it mean when people are putting posts in the lists thread that says "Reseved"? Is that just do lists will be higher up?
People joke about making it to the "first page" of a thread (up to 40 posts per page depending on your settings); but no one really cares about the order.

It's just to start a post for later editing of your list.

Many of us bookmark the individual webpage of our list thread post, and/or add it to our signatures, to make adding to our list throughout the month easier.

indiephantom
01-25-12, 11:28 PM
Wow, this challenge starts tonight and I'm in the mood for some late night viewing. I'm still working on my tv challenge list, but I want to get a feature in tonight.

I want to see as many of the remaining new nominees as I can, while checking out lots of older stuff I just haven't gotten around to or want to revisit.

Personal goal: 83 films (including shorts and IN MEMORIAM wildcards) in celebration of the 83rd Annual Academy Awards.

HollywoodLights
01-26-12, 12:06 AM
I'll be asleep by the time the challenge starts. Oh why oh why must I be ESt and not CSt

lisadoris
01-26-12, 08:28 AM
Started the Challenge off by watching Lilies of the Field for the first time. I like Poitier's performance in In The Heat of the Night better but actor's don't always win Oscars for their best performances. Lilies was a good film though. Hopefully I can get King Solomon's Mines done before class this afternoon (another film I've never seen).

HollywoodLights
01-26-12, 09:15 PM
Definetly starting tonight but not sure where I should start. Pulp Fiction is a personal favorite but Wizard of Oz is a classic....then theres a pile of a billion movies i haven't popped in yet. any ideas how to pick that crucial first film?

The Monkees
01-26-12, 11:43 PM
I have a spot reserved for my list, however I'm not sure I'll be participating this year, haven't felt it to start yet. We'll see. :)

HollywoodLights
01-26-12, 11:49 PM
Pulp Fiction won out for the crucial first view. I love this film I really do. Quentin Tarantino uses some interesting storytelling methods, and even managed to scoop up and award for best screenplay. The real holograph for me though is the entire first sequence from the at ride conversation all the way to the end of the apartment scene. Brilliant.

mrcellophane
01-27-12, 01:02 AM
I went to see Beauty and the Beast when I realized that my local theater had one 2D showing. Then I switched gears with The Divorcee which was a great little drama that definitely poked at the gender double standards of the day. Not quite sure how I feel about the ending. Time will tell.

gp1086
01-27-12, 01:31 AM
First watch for me, a MAJOR classic I have never seen until now - The Godfather.

indiephantom
01-27-12, 01:47 AM
First watch for me, a MAJOR classic I have never seen until now - The Godfather.

Great starter pick! You would do well to see the other two also.

gp1086
01-27-12, 01:49 AM
Great starter pick! You would do well to see the other two also.
Might be on my list as well. ;)

HollywoodLights
01-27-12, 02:17 AM
I might have to watch the godfather as part of my challenge as well. Never seen it, only a few mins of the 3rd one.

davidh777
01-27-12, 03:22 AM
As far as picking the first selection, it depends a lot on the challenge. TV I have such a backlog and eligibility is so easy to determine. With Oscars, it takes more research to figure out qualifiers. One that's been on my list for a long time is Doctor Zhivago, but I need the right amount of time and the right mood to watch that. Another I know I want to rewatch is Inception. Other than that, I'm not totally sure. I'm still smarting from last year, when I finally watched Rio Bravo only to find out that it didn't qualify. :sad:

Ash Ketchum
01-27-12, 06:14 AM
I might have to watch the godfather as part of my challenge as well. Never seen it, only a few mins of the 3rd one.

You're both better off skipping the 3rd one entirely. Except as a textbook example of how a once-great filmmaker can ruin his own franchise. (Coppola's protege George Lucas then followed up with his own textbook example of that.)

Indy24LA
01-27-12, 09:19 AM
You're both better off skipping the 3rd one entirely. Except as a textbook example of how a once-great filmmaker can ruin his own franchise. (Coppola's protege George Lucas then followed up with his own textbook example of that.)

Nothing could ruin Godfather I and II. Coppola could have used Jar Jar Binks as Michael Corleone in part III and it still wouldn't tarnish I and II.

I started out with The Philadelphia Story and absolutely loved it. I will save the Sound of Music for this weekend, since there's no real football on.

MrTerrific
01-27-12, 10:07 AM
Watched War Horse last night. Thought it was just as sappy as reviews have said, but I did enjoy it.

Watching The Help now. So far so good. The nominated performances have been great.

Gonna try and catch Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and Moneyball to complete the Best Picture nominees from this year.

Darth Maher
01-27-12, 11:09 AM
You're both better off skipping the 3rd one entirely. Except as a textbook example of how a once-great filmmaker can ruin his own franchise. (Coppola's protege George Lucas then followed up with his own textbook example of that.)

Nothing could ruin Godfather I and II. Coppola could have used Jar Jar Binks as Michael Corleone in part III and it still wouldn't tarnish I and II.

Because unlike Lucas, Coppola left the originals alone. Make all the crappy sequels/prequels you want, just leave what's already done... done.

It's been a few years since I've watched the Godfather movies. Now seems like a good time to revisit them.

Another awesome thing this year is that my wife is more on board with watching Oscar winners/nominees this year than in the past. So I might be able to get some decent viewing in this year.

Mao
01-27-12, 01:22 PM
Anyone find any of this year's shorts anwhere online yet? I'd gladly make another post like last years...

Gobear
01-27-12, 01:47 PM
As far as picking the first selection, it depends a lot on the challenge. TV I have such a backlog and eligibility is so easy to determine. With Oscars, it takes more research to figure out qualifiers. One that's been on my list for a long time is Doctor Zhivago, but I need the right amount of time and the right mood to watch that. Another I know I want to rewatch is Inception. Other than that, I'm not totally sure. I'm still smarting from last year, when I finally watched Rio Bravo only to find out that it didn't qualify. :sad:

Yeah, same for me last year when I watched A Face in the Crowd and Sweet Smell of Success, only to find that both films had been passed over by Oscar, yet a potboiler like Peyton Place received multiple nominations.

HollywoodLights
01-27-12, 02:13 PM
Because unlike Lucas, Coppola left the originals alone. Make all the crappy sequels/prequels you want, just leave what's already done... done.

wasn't there the Coppola restoration though? Or was that literally just restoring a film and not re-editing it?

orlmac
01-27-12, 03:01 PM
I'm going to begin my viewing with Underworld from 1927 by Director Josef Von Sternberg. I love these criterion dvds, they have a lot of good historical information for these movies that were made 30+ years before I was born. My favorite part of this challenge is watching something that I wouldn't normally watch, I usually find something new (whether genre or actor/actress or producer) that sets me off to find other things to enjoy.

Ash Ketchum
01-27-12, 03:11 PM
Yeah, same for me last year when I watched A Face in the Crowd and Sweet Smell of Success, only to find that both films had been passed over by Oscar, yet a potboiler like Peyton Place received multiple nominations.

I like all three of those movies, but while FACE and SMELL were artistically stronger, PEYTON PLACE was more entertaining in a grand melodrama way and struck a stronger chord with the public than either of the other two. (It was also based on a scandalous semi-autobiographical best-seller.) This was at a time when films that were both popular and critical favorites got more play from the Academy. Lots of films from the '50s that became big film school favorites in later decades were overlooked by the Academy (and most critics) in the '50s, while things like THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH and AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS actually won Best Picture. (In '56, THE SEARCHERS didn't get any noms either.)

I've actually revisited PEYTON PLACE more often than I have FACE or SMELL, including for last year's Oscar Challenge. I love that movie.

Gobear
01-27-12, 03:24 PM
I like all three of those movies, but while FACE and SMELL were artistically stronger, PEYTON PLACE was more entertaining in a grand melodrama way and struck a stronger chord with the public than either of the other two. (It was also based on a scandalous semi-autobiographical best-seller.) This was at a time when films that were both popular and critical favorites got more play from the Academy. Lots of films from the '50s that became big film school favorites in later decades were overlooked by the Academy (and most critics) in the '50s, while things like THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH and AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS actually won Best Picture. (In '56, THE SEARCHERS didn't get any noms either.)

I've actually revisited PEYTON PLACE more often than I have FACE or SMELL, including for last year's Oscar Challenge. I love that movie.

I love SHOWGIRLS, but I sure wouldn't have nominated it for Best Picture. ;)

I will probably get in some of the usual classics, but for now, I'm focusing on off-beat, obscure films that got one or two nominations, which is why I started with Poltergeist II, a semi-crappy film that actually received a Best Visual Effects nom, although by 2011 standards the FX suck.

popcorn
01-27-12, 05:26 PM
I didn't even know the 26th was the start date and discovered it on accident. Watched The King's Speech to kick it off. Next thing I know I was "trying" to watch Last Tango in Paris. That one is a hard watch.

Going for around 75 this year. It's my favorite challenge.

orlmac
01-27-12, 05:31 PM
I thought that Underworld was quite good, I am planning to watch his next movie The Last Command to start off next year's challenge, it won for the Best Actor in a Leading Role in 1929. I prefer sound but it was fun to watch what appears to be the first influential gangster movie. Movies like this aren't as powerful when their scenes have been imitated many times but they are still quite good when watched in the proper context.

lisadoris
01-27-12, 07:56 PM
So far so good in terms of the films. King Solomon's Mines and Joan of Arc were a bit dry but the first one was very pretty to look at. The Goodbye Girl and My Favorite Year were a lot of fun and Peter O'Toole played an excellently funny drunk. It was fun to see how young all the actor's in The Dirty Dozen looked.

gp1086
01-27-12, 08:21 PM
For anyone interested in checking it out, this past week they released a fully restored "Wings" (the first-ever Best Picture winner) on blu ray / DVD.

Mao
01-27-12, 09:29 PM
For anyone interested in checking it out, this past week they released a fully restored "Wings" (the first-ever Best Picture winner) on blu ray / DVD.

It is a thing of beauty!

Plan on watching it in the next couple of days. Watching the first 5 minutes and the extra on how it was restored makes you want them to restore everything!

You owe it to yourself to seek it out (the restored DVD was just released on Netflix, as well, but I'll gladly covet my Blu-ray for years to come!) :D

gp1086
01-27-12, 10:27 PM
It is a thing of beauty!

Plan on watching it in the next couple of days. Watching the first 5 minutes and the extra on how it was restored makes you want them to restore everything!

You owe it to yourself to seek it out (the restored DVD was just released on Netflix, as well, but I'll gladly covet my Blu-ray for years to come!) :D
Nice! Yeah - I hope they do this for additional titles going forward.

Ash Ketchum
01-28-12, 07:55 AM
It was fun to see how young all the actor's in The Dirty Dozen looked.

Half of that cast were actual WWII veterans--22 years after the war had ended! Lee Marvin was wounded in the Battle of Saipan. Also vets: Bronson, Savalas, Jaeckel, Borgnine, Ryan, Meeker, Kennedy, and Webber. Clint Walker was in the Merchant Marine during the war at the age of 17! The only key cast members too young for WWII were Brown, Cassavetes and Sutherland. Still alive as of this post: Borgnine, Kennedy, Walker, Brown and Sutherland, all of whom, except for Walker, are still active!

darkhawk
01-28-12, 10:12 AM
Could the moderators make the list thread into a sticky just for the month?

davidh777
01-28-12, 10:13 AM
Haven't started this yet as I'm out of town for a couple days and want to finish off the TV challenge. I'm getting great ideas from this thread, though, like The King's Speech and The Dirty Dozen (first time those have been paired in a sentence?). I'll be checking the list thread for more ideas. :)

davidh777
01-28-12, 10:16 AM
Could the moderators make the list thread into a sticky just for the month?

Traditionally they do once the previous challenge ends

MrTerrific
01-28-12, 01:18 PM
Tried "The Barefoot Contessa" this morning and have to say I found it boring. Could never get into it. Might be the first Bogart film I've watched and disliked.

orlmac
01-28-12, 02:26 PM
I have a quick question on the checklist. I've picked out the Ten Commandments for Visual Effects because it won the Oscar for Special Effects in 1956. Does this qualify for this category?

shadokitty
01-28-12, 03:46 PM
Thinking of opening my challenge with Tora! Tora! Tora!, as I see it is running on the Military channel tonight.

orlmac
01-28-12, 06:23 PM
Another question on the checklist. I am watching Towering Inferno for the Original Song category. It won the Oscar for it's year but it doesn't specify it as an Original Song, but I assume it qualifies because it was the only song winner that year.

lisadoris
01-28-12, 06:27 PM
Another question on the checklist. I am watching Towering Inferno for the Original Song category. It won the Oscar for it's year but it doesn't specify it as an Original Song, but I assume it qualifies because it was the only song winner that year.
Yep, the song in question is "We May Never Love Like This Again."

indiephantom
01-28-12, 07:31 PM
Well, five films so far...I really need to pick up the pace, but I do have many shorts on hand, too. Have to spend the night at a sleep clinic so this weekend was a bit of a bust for me. But I've got some full days coming up. Really trying to see as many of this year's nominees that I've missed, too.

orlmac
01-28-12, 07:36 PM
Yep, the song in question is "We May Never Love Like This Again."

Thanks!

I have finally completed my full list of films to watch this challenge, all of them are first time views (or I don't remember watching them, I guess it's the same thing). I watched The Dirty Dozen last night, excellent movie with a ton of good actors. A lot of fun to watch.

lisadoris
01-28-12, 08:20 PM
Well today turned out to be subtitle day! Volver was amazing and I have no clue as to how I missed watching it until now. Pan's Labyrinth was more violent than I remember but still beautiful to watch - except for the bugs, I hate bugs. I remember when I saw it in the theater there was a sign warning viewers that the film was in Spanish. Apparently, folks paid no attention to the trailers and they were asking for their money back when they saw subtitles. Diving Bell was interesting. I have to think about this film a bit more. The blu of Algiers was definitely worth the upgrade and Couching Tiger is always amazing. I still think this should have won Best Picture.

indiephantom
01-29-12, 07:04 AM
Volver is one I plan on watching for this challenge, and the same with Pan's Labyrinth. Those are both films I somehow still havent' gotten around to.

shadokitty
01-29-12, 10:09 AM
Need to pick up the pace here, as I was tired last night and fell asleep before Tora! Tora! Tora! even came on, so I have yet to even watch my first movie. Maybe do the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie tonight.

gp1086
01-29-12, 03:35 PM
Just watched E.T. Masterful.

Debating what will come next today. Said I was going to only do first-time watches (which will remain as far as my challenge goes), but now debating revisiting some classics. Maybe I'll have to do some bonus watches next week depending how I'm progressing.

indiephantom
01-29-12, 07:10 PM
Need to pick up the pace here, as I was tired last night and fell asleep before Tora! Tora! Tora! even came on, so I have yet to even watch my first movie. Maybe do the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie tonight.

It happens. But you might get some days where you can really get a lot in to make up for it. That's my personal wish as well. I really want to complete this competition but I'm still squeezing in a few non-nominees as well. It's a challenge all right!

lisadoris
01-29-12, 07:59 PM
Started off wanting to do documentary day. Freeheld was sad and touching at the same time. I'm glad the city council extended pension benefits to Lt. Hester's partner. Man on Wire was absolutely stunning. You couldn't have paid me to go anywhere near the top of the Twin Towers let alone try to walk on a high wire between them. Jesus Camp was seriously the most terrifying film I've ever seen. No joke. I decided against any more documentaries for the day after seeing that so I switched to lighter viewing. Shadokitty's post made me think of Pirates of the Caribbean and Depp's performance always makes me laugh. It's a shame the Academy doesn't show a lot of love for comedies but it's hard to argue against Sean Penn who won that year (though I didn't really care for Mystic River overall). Notorious[b] is hands-down my favorite Hitchcock film and the blu is a nice upgrade in picture quality. What can you say about [b]T2 except that Stan Winston deserved every Oscar he won.

Indy24LA
01-29-12, 08:56 PM
Over the weekend I got in The Sound of Music, The African Queen, Charade and Strangers on a Train. All first time viewings.

gp1086
01-29-12, 09:24 PM
Man on Wire was absolutely stunning. You couldn't have paid me to go anywhere near the top of the Twin Towers let alone try to walk on a high wire between them.
Loved Man on Wire!

gp1086
01-29-12, 09:24 PM
Finally got around to seeing The King's Speech. :)

Watching SAGs now - may try to fit in one more later.

Cardsfan111
01-29-12, 11:24 PM
Found the first "hidden gem" of the challenge for me--For some reason, I had never seen Primal Fear til today. For a long time, I thought for sure I had watched it before, but when I looked at the synopsis, I realized I hadn't. I had recorded it months ago and then noticed it qualified for this challenge with Edward Norton's nomination for Best Supporting Actor, in what I believe was his film debut.

Turned out to be a great film with a terrific cast. And Norton's peformance was incredible. :up:

davidh777
01-30-12, 12:00 AM
Found the first "hidden gem" of the challenge for me--For some reason, I had never seen Primal Fear til today. For a long time, I thought for sure I had watched it before, but when I looked at the synopsis, I realized I hadn't. I had recorded it months ago and then noticed it qualified for this challenge with Edward Norton's nomination for Best Supporting Actor, in what I believe was his film debut.

Turned out to be a great film with a terrific cast. And Norton's peformance was incredible. :up:

Now I'm sorry I watched this last week for the first time in years--shoulda held off! :lol:

But I agree--really good film and the cast is totally stacked.

gp1086
01-30-12, 01:59 AM
Found the first "hidden gem" of the challenge for me--For some reason, I had never seen Primal Fear til today. For a long time, I thought for sure I had watched it before, but when I looked at the synopsis, I realized I hadn't. I had recorded it months ago and then noticed it qualified for this challenge with Edward Norton's nomination for Best Supporting Actor, in what I believe was his film debut.

Turned out to be a great film with a terrific cast. And Norton's peformance was incredible. :up:
Agreed. An often forgotten film and I loved Norton's performance.

The ending reveal was incredible.

lisadoris
01-30-12, 08:24 AM
Over the weekend I got in The Sound of Music, The African Queen, Charade and Strangers on a Train. All first time viewings.
What did you think?

Darth Maher
01-30-12, 11:34 AM
Please forgive me if this has been brought up before...

But shouldn't 2010 be added to the decades in the checklist?

Ash Ketchum
01-30-12, 11:42 AM
Over the weekend I got in The Sound of Music, The African Queen, Charade and Strangers on a Train. All first time viewings.

I saw them all on the big screen, although only one (CHARADE) when it first came out.

STRANGERS ON A TRAIN is one of Hitchcock's best, IMHO. Robert Walker's performance is on a completely different level from most Hollywood star acting. I recently read the book by Patricia Highsmith. It's much darker than the movie. Too dark, if you ask me, but then that's true of most of her books.

Indy24LA
01-30-12, 01:39 PM
What did you think?

I really liked The Sound of Music, the setting alone was lush and rich. Strangers on a Train was great, it was a DVD copy, so it looked more like it was made in the early 40s and I always find Hitchcock movies to be fun. I was surprised how cheeky Charade was and it felt like the most modern of all the films. I liked the African Queen, but hard to buy the love story aspect of it.

Indy24LA
01-30-12, 01:42 PM
I saw them all on the big screen, although only one (CHARADE) when it first came out.

STRANGERS ON A TRAIN is one of Hitchcock's best, IMHO. Robert Walker's performance is on a completely different level from most Hollywood star acting. I recently read the book by Patricia Highsmith. It's much darker than the movie. Too dark, if you ask me, but then that's true of most of her books.

The thing about Walker is he was menacing without losing any charm. That's a subtle nuance that is missing from most of today's movie psychos :)

davidh777
01-30-12, 02:30 PM
I missed the chance to open my Charade Blu during the Criterion challenge so good to know I've got another opportunity. I like the film but didn't expect it to be an Oscar nom.

Indy24LA
01-30-12, 04:35 PM
I missed the chance to open my Charade Blu during the Criterion challenge so good to know I've got another opportunity. I like the film but didn't expect it to be an Oscar nom.

It's only nominated for the song. It's so funny, I just assume all the old classics (like Some Like It Hot and The Searchers) qualify cause they were at least nominated and am always surprised when something wasn't.

The Monkees
01-31-12, 12:25 AM
Please forgive me if this has been brought up before...

But shouldn't 2010 be added to the decades in the checklist?

Yeah that's a good point, I didn't catch that when I created the thread. Thanks :)

gp1086
01-31-12, 02:01 AM
No go for you this year, The Monkees? Although we have a slightly different taste in some films, I enjoy your YouTube channel.

Travis McClain
01-31-12, 11:29 PM
No promises how attentive I'll be, but I'm in. Gonna try to have more first time viewings than repeats. We'll see how it goes.

gp1086
01-31-12, 11:46 PM
The blu ray I got in the mail today runs 3 hoursl and I got home at 11:30 with work tomorrow morning. Guess that can wait for tomorrow. Gotta find a shorter title for tonight.

davidh777
02-01-12, 12:30 AM
I just realized I'm on the board since I saw The Artist today! :banana:

gp1086
02-01-12, 12:31 AM
I just realized I'm on the board since I saw The Artist today! :banana:
Nice. Just 99 more to go! :)

davidh777
02-01-12, 12:43 AM
Nice. Just 99 more to go! :)

At the rate of only four per day :lol:

Travis McClain
02-01-12, 03:09 AM
Just streamed my first movie for the challenge, The Man Who Wasn't There, a 2001 nominee for Best Cinematography (Roger Deakins). This was a first time viewing for me. I rather enjoyed it, though I found it all quite obvious and predictable. Still, the production design was terrific and I loved the black and white aesthetic. The dialog was well written, creating a very specific environment and of course, I loved the cast.

Last year, I tinkered with setting for myself the objective of seeing all the nominees in a specific field, in a specific year. I'm going to try to see all five 2001 Best Cinematography nominees. I own one (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring), and I've seen two of the others (Amélie, which is not currently streaming on Netflix, and Moulin Rouge, which is). The fifth nominee, and now the only one I have not previously seen, is Black Hawk Down which is also streaming on Netflix. I may check to see if the local library has Amélie, and failing that, I may break down and squeeze that into my budget as it's one I want in my library anyway.

The Man Who Wasn't There [2001 Awards]
(N) Cinematography - Roger Deakins

gp1086
02-01-12, 12:01 PM
Just streamed my first movie for the challenge, The Man Who Wasn't There, a 2001 nominee for Best Cinematography (Roger Deakins). This was a first time viewing for me. I rather enjoyed it, though I found it all quite obvious and predictable. Still, the production design was terrific and I loved the black and white aesthetic. The dialog was well written, creating a very specific environment and of course, I loved the cast.

Last year, I tinkered with setting for myself the objective of seeing all the nominees in a specific field, in a specific year. I'm going to try to see all five 2001 Best Cinematography nominees. I own one (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring), and I've seen two of the others (Amélie, which is not currently streaming on Netflix, and Moulin Rouge, which is). The fifth nominee, and now the only one I have not previously seen, is Black Hawk Down which is also streaming on Netflix. I may check to see if the local library has Amélie, and failing that, I may break down and squeeze that into my budget as it's one I want in my library anyway.
I was actually looking at your 2011 list after you posted yesterday and noticed you mentioned this idea at the end. Definitely think this is a cool way of doing it. Let us know what you think.

Travis McClain
02-01-12, 01:06 PM
I was actually looking at your 2011 list after you posted yesterday and noticed you mentioned this idea at the end. Definitely think this is a cool way of doing it. Let us know what you think.

Will do!

Mondo Kane
02-01-12, 04:09 PM
Thank God TCM's got the ball rolling now. I'll finally be able to watch more than 2 movies a day!

lisadoris
02-01-12, 08:04 PM
Watched the Malcolm X on blu this evening and man does the film look gorgeous. It's also nice to finally be able to watch the film without having to flip or change discs! No disrespect to Pacino but I continue to be shocked that Denzel Washington didn't win an Oscar for this performance. To continue my black history month theme; even though I've taught a class on black film for five years, I had never watched Shaft before today. Decent film, great music. And for something completely different, I thought Fog of War was fascinating.

gp1086
02-01-12, 11:07 PM
Watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind for the first time tonight. Damn am I impressed. Some areas in the beginning are a little slow for me at times, but the second half was excellent and actually makes you appreciate the first half more. Overall, I gave it an 8.5 out of 10, but was toying with a 9 since I feel like I'll want to revisit this again in the future. Winslet and Carrey are both fantastic - this may actually be my favorite Carrey performance ever.

gp1086
02-01-12, 11:11 PM
Watched the Malcolm X on blu this evening and man does the film look gorgeous. It's also nice to finally be able to watch the film without having to flip or change discs! No disrespect to Pacino but I continue to be shocked that Denzel Washington didn't win an Oscar for this performance. To continue my black history month theme; even though I've taught a class on black film for five years, I had never watched Shaft before today. Decent film, great music. And for something completely different, I thought Fog of War was fascinating.
I'll need to check those out when I have some extra time (see Malcolm X is a whopping 202 mins!, but I am a big Denzel fan). I've seen the 2000 version of Shaft, but Samuel L wasn't nominated for any Oscars in that one.

Mondo Kane
02-01-12, 11:40 PM
I'll need to check those out when I have some extra time (see Malcolm X is a whopping 202 mins!, but I am a big Denzel fan)

It's very fast-paced though. And even though the 2nd act (When Malcolm Little transforms into Malcolm X) is more dialogue-driven than the first act, Denzel's acting never ceases to lose your attention.

Ash Ketchum
02-01-12, 11:42 PM
To continue my black history month theme; even though I've taught a class on black film for five years, I had never watched Shaft before today. Decent film, great music.

I remember watching them film a stunt for SHAFT in Times Square. It was the one where Leroy gets sent flying out the window ("Threw my man Leroy out the GOT-damn window!"). The actor playing him (Tommy Lane) was also the stuntman. A few months later SHAFT came out and played on 42nd Street. It was the first film I saw at a 42nd Street theater. The theater I was in is visible in the opening shot where Shaft comes out of the subway station and the camera pulls back to reveal the marquees on the Deuce.

When I re-watched the film a few years ago I was struck by how well it captured the look, feel and flavor of Times Square and its environs in those years. What a time capsule. They shot the entrance to Shaft's office building on the block where I went to high school (the "Fame" school)--while I was in high school. Louie, the guy who ran the newspaper/candy stand in the building lobby where we used to get our gum and stuff, plays himself in that scene.

I remember seeing the Oscar ceremony in early 1972 and Isaac Hayes' memorable performance of the title song from SHAFT and then bringing his grandmother up onstage with him when he got the award. Rex Reed trashed Hayes' performance in his column the next day.

Travis McClain
02-01-12, 11:56 PM
I love hearing Ash Ketchum reminisce about movies. That kind of attention to detail and passion is exactly what makes discussing film so much a communal experience. So, thanks for infusing our group with your recollections and insights. It adds a very enjoyable flavor to the forum.

As for me, I went to stream Moulin Rouge as the second of the five 2001 Best Cinematography nominees...and discovered that Netflix pulled it while I was sleeping! >:( So, I scrounged around and went with Gosford Park instead. I quite enjoyed it; it's like if a BBC TV series was condensed into a film. The cast is overwhelming in scale and talent, and the aristocratic environment is captivating. It's one of those films that exudes the kind of ambiance that makes me just want to get lost in it and stay there for a while.

I was taken out of the movie by the appearance of Stephen Fry as the bumbling Inspector, because of course I was mindful throughout the film of the terrific Jeeves & Wooster TV series he starred in with Hugh Laurie, based on the P.G. Wodehouse novels. Having him appear in this was probably pitch perfect for many viewers, but it was too much for me. Then again, I wasn't distracted by the appearance of three Harry Potter principals, and I'm sure many others would be.

Incidentally, for anyone else who views it (or is thinking about it), here are its 2001 nominations:

Gosford Park (http://awardsdatabase.oscars.org/ampas_awards/DisplayMain.jsp?curTime=1328104304302)
Sandcastle 5 in association with Chicagofilms and Medusa Film Production; USA Films. [U.S.A./Germany/Italy/United Kingdom]

2001 (74th)

ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE -- Helen Mirren {"Mrs. Wilson"}
ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE -- Maggie Smith {"Constance, Countess of Trentham"}
ART DIRECTION -- Art Direction: Stephen Altman; Set Decoration: Anna Pinnock
COSTUME DESIGN -- Jenny Beavan
DIRECTING -- Robert Altman
BEST PICTURE -- Robert Altman, Bob Balaban and David Levy, Producers

*WRITING (Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen) -- Written by Julian Fellowes

Indicates WIN

mrcellophane
02-02-12, 02:29 AM
Yesterday, I went out to dinner with a friend and told her I had just watched Leave Her to Heaven - melodrama in glorious Technicolor! Five minutes later, I realized that I had told her the entire plot (with her permission, of course) in such an animated way that some people at a nearby table kept glancing in our direction. I guess I really enjoyed it! After watching The Adventures of Robin Hood, I watched the documentary about Technicolor that is included on the Blu-ray. It amazes me that two films can use the same coloration process to such different effects.

Today, I watched The Last Emperor which definitely warrants a rematch as well as a listen to the audio commentary.

Travis McClain
02-02-12, 02:36 AM
After watching The Adventures of Robin Hood, I watched the documentary about Technicolor that is included on the Blu-ray. It amazes me that two films can use the same coloration process to such different effects.

Seriously, that documentary is astounding! It ought to be shown in every Film 101 course, because it not only chronicles the evolution of the process, but of the craft of film storytelling as well. I don't know that I would advise anyone to take time out of this specific challenge to view it, but anyone with even a passing interest in such things should eventually sit down with it. (Incidentally, June would be a great time to do this since it would count as a documentary during the Historical Appreciation Challenge. Not that I'm already shamelessly promoting that or anything.)

davidh777
02-02-12, 02:52 AM
Saw Gosford Park years ago and enjoyed the Coward songs. He got a little resurgence of interest from it.

Travis McClain
02-02-12, 02:55 AM
Saw Gosford Park years ago and enjoyed the Coward songs. He got a little resurgence of interest from it.

I confess woeful ignorance here. I assume you mean Noel Coward? I just looked on IMDb at the soundtrack (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0280707/soundtrack) listing page and I don't see his name any--whoa! P.G. Wodehouse wrote the lyrics to "Nuts in May!" I've already met my quota for learning something cool for the day!

davidh777
02-02-12, 03:48 AM
I confess woeful ignorance here. I assume you mean Noel Coward? I just looked on IMDb at the soundtrack (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0280707/soundtrack) listing page and I don't see his name any--whoa! P.G. Wodehouse wrote the lyrics to "Nuts in May!" I've already met my quota for learning something cool for the day!

See, this should teach me not to launch into casual conversation about a movie I haven't seen in 10 years. I just did some research (the movie's so old I found a D-VHS version :lol:), and the songwriter I was thinking of was Ivor Novello (an actual character in the movie, and someone I know even less about than Noel Coward), not Coward. So why was there a resurgence of interest in Coward? Maybe there wasn't. I do remember this crossover-type album vividly, but perhaps it was completely unrelated to Gosford Park. :shrug:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51sbMwp340L._SL500_AA280_.jpg

There, I just told you something completely uncool so as not to exceed your quota. :) Sorry about the misinformation.

Travis McClain
02-02-12, 04:40 AM
See, this should teach me not to launch into casual conversation about a movie I haven't seen in 10 years. I just did some research (the movie's so old I found a D-VHS version :lol:), and the songwriter I was thinking of was Ivor Novello (an actual character in the movie, and someone I know even less about than Noel Coward), not Coward. So why was there a resurgence of interest in Coward? Maybe there wasn't. I do remember this crossover-type album vividly, but perhaps it was completely unrelated to Gosford Park. :shrug:

Holy damn, dude! The CD (http://www.amazon.com/No%C3%ABl-Coward-Songbook-Noel/dp/B00006HM8Z) is out of print and starts at around $85 on Amazon Marketplace! So if you've got that lying around and you need some cash, there ya go.

The album was released 17 September 2002, and the Gosford Park DVD came out 25 June. My guess is that perhaps you went shopping someplace like a Barnes and Noble or Borders where they were both featured at the same time? Someone else may have a better recollection of the two and why you would conflate them.

gp1086
02-02-12, 10:01 PM
Taking a night off to honor the today's holiday and watch Groundhog Day. How did this get no Oscar nominations for screenplay!? Was hoping this could be my first bonus rewatch!

davidh777
02-02-12, 10:20 PM
Holy damn, dude! The CD (http://www.amazon.com/No%C3%ABl-Coward-Songbook-Noel/dp/B00006HM8Z) is out of print and starts at around $85 on Amazon Marketplace! So if you've got that lying around and you need some cash, there ya go.

The album was released 17 September 2002, and the Gosford Park DVD came out 25 June. My guess is that perhaps you went shopping someplace like a Barnes and Noble or Borders where they were both featured at the same time? Someone else may have a better recollection of the two and why you would conflate them.

Well, who couldn't use some cash? :) I'm pretty sure I have it and I'm pretty sure it's unopened. Now to find it among my shelves of media....

JerryKILL
02-03-12, 02:14 AM
The Noel Coward Songbook CD starts at $1.87 used, pennies on eBay. If you want to pay $80 for some shrink wrap, be my guest.

Travis McClain
02-03-12, 02:25 AM
The Noel Coward Songbook CD starts at $1.87 used, pennies on eBay. If you want to pay $80 for some shrink wrap, be my guest.

Well, in fairness, I 1) hadn't checked eBay mostly on account of the fact I was simply using Amazon to find release dates and 2) was only suggesting this to sellers--not buyers. ;)

Travis McClain
02-03-12, 04:58 AM
I had a rough night and went to bed around 10, but I got back up around 2 this morning and decided to stream something. I wound up picking No Man's Land, 2001's Best Foreign Language Film. It's about a Bosnian and Serbian who get caught in the no man's land between their respective front lines. Somewhat obvious, but gripping all the same. I kept thinking how the three main cast members looked like Timothy Dalton, Jack Black and Gary Burghoff. Also, it's really three different Star Trek episodes. Act I is The Next Generation episode, "Face of the Enemy." Act II is Deep Space Nine's "The Ship," and Act III is the original series's "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield."

Strangely, I seem to have reacted to not being able to view all five 2001 Best Cinematography nominees as planned by delving further into other 2001 nominees and winners. I think I'm just going to keep going with that theme for a while. I've seen several of them before; I don't know if I'll re-watch those or try to keep to first-time viewings only.

No Man's Land (2001)
(W) Foreign Language Film - Bosnia & Herzegovina

popcorn
02-03-12, 02:11 PM
Just added Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Gosford Park to my "must watch" list. I'm trying to watch more films for the first time instead of those classics that I enjoy annually (50/50 split so far). I still found myself watching On the Waterfront last night. Now my son wants to watch Gladiator for the first time. How can I deny him?

davidh777
02-03-12, 04:27 PM
Well, in fairness, I 1) hadn't checked eBay mostly on account of the fact I was simply using Amazon to find release dates and 2) was only suggesting this to sellers--not buyers. ;)

Yeah, JerryKILL's snark seems misdirected

Indy24LA
02-03-12, 08:05 PM
It's time for the French Connection (1st time viewing).

Travis McClain
02-03-12, 08:27 PM
Decided to keep going with my 2001 theme and streamed Elling, a Norwegian nominee for Foreign Language Film. It's a variation on The Odd Couple, but in this case the two guys are brought together as mentally challenged patients who are discharged to try living together in an apartment. It's a nice little movie and I rather enjoyed it, but I can easily see why No Man's Land bested it. I felt that the story was too paint-by-numbers, and could have taken more chances. In fairness, though, it was based upon a novel so perhaps there wasn't much room for such things (though for all I know, they gutted the source material).

Potential streamers be advised: it is not anamorphic via Netflix streaming.

Elling (2001)
(N) Foreign Language Film - Norway

Travis McClain
02-03-12, 10:39 PM
Just streamed Memento, another first time viewing. Interesting premise, decent performances...but I got bored. There, I said it. This was up for two nominations; Film Editing (Dody Dorn) and Original Screenplay (Christopher Nolan, from a short story by his brother Jonathan). I haven't seen Black Hawk Down yet (though it's in my queue) so I can't say that it deserved to lose Film Editing, but I do think that perhaps some of the enthusiasm for its editing was erroneously misplaced from the structure of the narrative, where the credit ought to have gone. This is not to say that there aren't some nifty edits in Memento, mind you. I just think that for some people, the non-linear nature of the film may have led them to think more highly of the editing than they should have.

Memento (2000) [2001 Awards]
(N) Film Editing - Dody Dorn
(N) Writing (Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen) - Screenplay by Christopher Nolan, Story by Jonathan Nolan

mrcellophane
02-04-12, 02:55 AM
I watched Jezebel, my second Bette Davis film of the challenge. She's been one of my favorite actresses ever since I watched All About Eve. I love the little touches in the film. For example, at one point Davis's character remarks that it is 1850, not the Dark Ages. Also, there is a moment when characters discuss their hatred of abolitionists while being served by a older slave and fanned by a young slave.

After that, I switched gears and rewatched The Naked City, one of my favorite police procedurals. When I watched it for the first time on TCM, I remember Robert Osbourne stating in his introduction that it captured the pre-television feel of major cities, when people ventured out and largely spent a majority of their time outside. I love the milling crowds.

lisadoris
02-04-12, 07:57 AM
Just streamed Memento, another first time viewing. Interesting premise, decent performances...but I got bored. There, I said it.
I thought I was the only one. I thought that with such an interesting premise and talented actors that I would love it but, not so much.

Watched Shampoo yesterday and wow Beatty's character was unlikeable on every level. Despite the issues with West Side Story's blu I broke down and bought it. I watched it in Pow mode which featured interviews with some of the folks associated with the film and stage productions as well as just folks from the dance world stalking about the choreography. Quite informative and the film is still awesome and I'm not someone who normally cares for musicals. Also watched Jaws like I do every year and that movie just doesn't get old. Williams' score really does make the film special.

Travis McClain
02-04-12, 02:59 PM
I thought I was the only one. I thought that with such an interesting premise and talented actors that I would love it but, not so much.

I don't want to derail this thread into yet another endless back-and-forth about Christopher Nolan, but my problem with Memento was the same problem I have with all of his movies except the Batman work: his stories are entirely too cold. Intellectually, I find them intriguing, but I am never emotionally invested on any level.

I liken his storytelling to a psychopath, who mimics emotions but cannot feel them personally. Nolan tells me that his characters are upset, but never upsets me. The best example of this is Inception, in which the very talented Leonardo DiCaprio is basically asked to "Tell the audience you're upset." He tries, but it just seems like he was on too short a leash to actually reach me. Now, I've seen the guy in several other movies where he did affect me; I know the problem was not DiCaprio.

Kubrick is often characterized in much the same way: "cold," "cerebral" and "distant" are three frequently cited pejoratives against his filmography. I've seen shamefully few of his works, but enough that I would argue Kubrick understood emotion. He took a scientist's approach to storytelling and tried to offer perspective on it, but he allowed his characters to be emotional, and his actors to show it. Not so with Nolan. I don't think Nolan could have made Eyes Wide Shut, for instance (off topic: WTF was up with that not getting at least a single nomination?!).

Mondo Kane
02-04-12, 03:02 PM
Even though I (Still) haven't watched as much as I'd like to, I had my first surprise earlier with Seabiscuit. Didn't expect the movie to be as much about Jeff Bridges & Chris Coopers' characters (Mcguire & the horse almost seemed like secondary characters at times). Though the film felt routine towards the end, the movie's first hour had already won me over (Most favorite moments were the narration & photographs)

davidh777
02-04-12, 07:04 PM
Just checked a big one off my never-watched list: All About Eve! :banana:

Loved it. My kid always refuses to watch anything in black and white, but watching this reminded me how the story and the acting are what matter. (Not my bias--I just saw The Artist--but it's good to have a reminder now and then.)

As famous as this movie is, I'm pleased that I went in not even knowing who the title character was. :rock2:

Travis McClain
02-04-12, 09:06 PM
Just finished streaming The Affair of the Necklace, a fictionalization of a scandal that cast quite a shadow over Marie-Antionette and, by extension, the aristocracy (particularly the House of Bourbon). The film does a nice job spinning a yarn, and is mindful to have some fun along the way. 18th & 19th Century France is my favorite historical era, so I was captivated by a lot of the film that had nothing to do with the actual narrative.

I did think about it, though, that it's a film that very much reflects the Clinton 90s rather than the 21st Century so far. It has a sort of bemused interest in the affairs of the upper class, kind of like a soap opera, where the role that the incident played in the escalating political climate was presented as peripheral. Today, this film could not be made without beating us over the head with a message of populism prevailing over corrupt, powerful elites. I think if the film had come out just a little sooner, it may have earned quite a place in film discussions. As it was, the world had changed dramatically by the time of its release (30 November 2011). Squabbling about some white collar crime involving French aristocrats just didn't seem important when the film opened.

The Affair of the Necklace [2001 Awards]
(N) Costume Design - Milena Canonero

Travis McClain
02-05-12, 12:53 PM
Hulu has Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain! Woot! So I streamed that in bed late last night and fell in love all over again. I resented the commercial interruptions, but since it's not streaming via Netflix and I still don't own it, I shouldn't complain. I'm certain it was discussed ten years ago, but I would very much like to resurrect in the context of this thread the impact that 9/11 had on the voting. Looking at its nominations (five of 'em, no less!) and the fact it was snubbed entirely is awfully suspicious. How could a foreign language film with nominations in four other categories fail to capture Foreign Language Film? It lost to No Man's Land which, in the zeitgeist of the voting period, must have seemed a more "worthy" recipient. Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain is charming, yes, but it's not about the futility of war.

I have so far stuck with movies nominated during the 74th Awards and now I'm captivated to continue with that specific theme. I'm interested to see if I can tell how and why certain trends emerged that year, the first in the wake of 9/11. It was the year there was no red carpet ceremony, you know, another little element that I suspect is already fading into being little more than a footnote in film history. Not that it's terribly important overall, but I find it telling of the psychology of the Academy at the time.

Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain [2001 Awards]
(N) Art Direction - Art Direction: Aline Bonetto; Set Decoration: Marie-Laure Valla
(N) Cinematography - Bruno Delbonnel
(N) Foreign Language Film - France
(N) Sound - Vincent Arnardi, Guillaume Leriche, Jean Umansky
(N) Writing (Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen) - Screenplay by Guillaume Laurant and Jean-Pierre Jeunet; Dialogue by Guillaume Laurant

MrTerrific
02-05-12, 11:01 PM
Watching "The Lion King" for the first time. Most of my friends are in shock that I haven't seen it. I'm in shock that they have never seen any films by Kurosawa or Bergman.

Mondo Kane
02-05-12, 11:04 PM
Watched (The Original) Ladykillers earlier. Was there a reason why Alec Guinness was made up to look like Alastair Sim? :lol:

Mao
02-06-12, 02:24 PM
Can we get our lists thread sticky, please? :D

On a side note, had the time to get to "Wings" on Blu-Ray last night! What a wonderful experience...years since I've seen it and felt like I was seeing it in a completely new light! If you have a chance to seek it out - find it or buy it! This is what the future of film restoration needs to be!

Travis McClain
02-07-12, 12:58 AM
iTunes has The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore (http://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/fantastic-flying-books-mr./id439399261) as a free download (in HD, no less!) this week. It is one of the nominees for Best Short Film (Animated) this year. Not too shabby!

mrcellophane
02-07-12, 02:35 AM
Watching "The Lion King" for the first time. Most of my friends are in shock that I haven't seen it. I'm in shock that they have never seen any films by Kurosawa or Bergman.

Did you enjoy it? I hope so. It's one of my favorite Disney films. As a kid, I had all the songs memorized and tried to mimic the voices.

I also have friends who have never seen a Kurosawa or Bergman film. However, my biggest shock came one evening when I was having drinks with a group of friends. Through conversation, it was established that out of eight people, I was the only one who had seen Casablanca, had seen a film starring Humphrey Bogart or Ingrid Bergman, and knew who Lauren Bacall was. I was dumbfounded!

I watched Cinema Paradiso which is such a beautiful film. I'm not going to lie - I cried at several points. It was very moving. I enjoy films about film and films about characters who love film.

Travis McClain
02-07-12, 02:57 PM
Re: The Lion King - I maintain it has the best soundtrack in the entire Disney canon and it is also the greatest adaptation of "Hamlet" ever made. (Sure, it doesn't have Olivier...but it does have a baboon with a staff!)

Re: Casablanca - Until just a couple years ago, I would have been among your Philistine friends who hadn't seen it. I had seen The Maltese Falcon about a decade ago, but I honestly don't remember a thing from it. Not sure to this day if I've seen anything else with Ingrid Bergman. I did, however, know who Lauren Bacall was so there's that. Also, I saw my first Bergman movie in 2010 for the Criterion Collection Challenge here on DVD Talk and I have yet to see my first Kurosawa. Yet, I've made time to see Talladega Nights multiple times. I'm a heathen.

lisadoris
02-07-12, 04:46 PM
iTunes has The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore (http://itunes.apple.com/us/movie/fantastic-flying-books-mr./id439399261) as a free download (in HD, no less!) this week. It is one of the nominees for Best Short Film (Animated) this year. Not too shabby!
Thanks for the heads-up. What an adorable film the story was beautiful as was the animation (though as a teacher I think I'm biased for anything having to do with books and reading).

gp1086
02-07-12, 04:59 PM
The Lion King is such a magical film that never gets old to me. It's probably in my top ten favorites of all-time. I watched it on blu ray a month or so ago and the quality is incredible. Highly recommend you pick it up before it goes back in the Disney Vault.

gp1086
02-07-12, 05:03 PM
I PM'd the two moderators in this section about getting the lists thread stickied, FYI.

davidh777
02-07-12, 07:51 PM
Kid wanted to watch something so I cracked open the Pixar shorts. Good films, and padding my numbers was a nice bonus. :D

gp1086
02-08-12, 12:38 AM
Kid wanted to watch something so I cracked open the Pixar shorts. Good films, and padding my numbers was a nice bonus. :D
I'll have to check these out sometime.

gp1086
02-08-12, 12:38 AM
Got around to seeing The Artist tonight - meh. Am I the only one who doesn't think it's all the great?

Trevor
02-08-12, 07:55 AM
I think I've only watched one film that qualifies so far, but it was amazingly good, The Visitor (2007) (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0857191/).

Engaging story told in subtle ways with no preachiness, fake moments, or Hollywood ending; and just beautiful performances by the entire cast, especially Richard Jenkins.

crazychris88
02-08-12, 09:46 AM
Got around to seeing The Artist tonight - meh. Am I the only one who doesn't think it's all the great?

You are not alone. Both my girlfriend and myself didn't like it at all. Actually made my top 10 worst films of the year (at no. 10 , but still).I will happy if anything beats it this year for Best picture. Even The Help or EL&IC

gp1086
02-08-12, 09:53 AM
You are not alone. Both my girlfriend and myself didn't like it at all. Actually made my top 10 worst films of the year (at no. 10 , but still).I will happy if anything beats it this year for Best picture. Even The Help or EL&IC
I won't go as far to say I hated it or anything, but I was disengaged for quite a decent amount of time and found myself not really caring too much about the characters. Gave it a 5.0 out of 10. Definitely don't plan to return to it soon or anything.

davidh777
02-08-12, 12:29 PM
I'll have to check these out sometime.

I had seen most of the shorts in theaters (except the Cars one, perhaps because I didn't see Wall-E in theaters) but Pixar is always worth a rewatch.

Got around to seeing The Artist tonight - meh. Am I the only one who doesn't think it's all the great?

You are not alone. Both my girlfriend and myself didn't like it at all. Actually made my top 10 worst films of the year (at no. 10 , but still).I will happy if anything beats it this year for Best picture. Even The Help or EL&IC

Personally I loved The Artist, but I'm also a fan of early film. But this isn't the first time crazychris and I have had different opinions. :)

davidh777
02-08-12, 01:39 PM
Just watched Air Force One for the first time in years, after someone mentioned it in this thread. Such a hot-button movie, but I enjoy it. Hard not to like peak Harrison Ford, and it takes me back to the days when William H. Macy seemed to be in everything, but I like him too so it's OK.

My DVD looks pretty meh. This is one I was actually considering picking up the Superbit for back in the day, and Blu would probably have kickass sound if uncompressed. Not sure I watch this enough to upgrade, though.

Mao
02-08-12, 04:01 PM
Personally, I loved "The Artist".

The first time I saw it, there was so much buzz that I tended to feel a bit disconnected, as well.....my suggestion: see it again.

Mao
02-08-12, 07:28 PM
lisadoris is kicking butt on this challenge!

Wonders why she has so much time on her hands (and how I can get me some of that!) I need to stop working, eating and sleeping....

gp1086
02-08-12, 10:55 PM
lisadoris is kicking butt on this challenge!

Wonders why she has so much time on her hands (and how I can get me some of that!) I need to stop working, eating and sleeping....
I hear ya on that one, Mao. Damn work keeps interfering

Just finished up doing my first bonus rewatch - Batman Begins. WOW! I forgot what an awesome and now underrated movie this is. I love The Dark Knight so much that I forgot how great this is. So glad I checked it out again.

lisadoris
02-09-12, 07:40 AM
Well I only teach two days a week which leaves plenty of free time (I did all my class prep over the winter break before the semester began). Plus when I created my syllabi, I knew this challenge was coming so I made sure not to schedule too many writing assignments during the challenge. Unfortunately I have soul-sucking meetings to attend the rest of this week so there won't be much viewing.

I was really disappointed in Black Swan and The Wolfman. The latter had too much gore and no character development at all (I watched the theatrical version). Swan just didn't resonate with me at all for some reason. Up in the Air and The Kids are All Right were both interesting films and I loved The Conversation and I have no idea why it took me this long to see it. A number of folks in this challenged mentioned Gosford Park so I checked it out. Typical Robert Altman fare: lots of characters, strong performances but there's so much going on and so many people to focus on that I don't feel much attachment to anything happening in the film.

I started There Will Be Blood last night and I'll try to finish it today. Before now I never really understood the need for digital copies of films but now I get it.

Darkgod
02-09-12, 12:55 PM
lisadoris is kicking butt on this challenge!

Wonders why she has so much time on her hands (and how I can get me some of that!) I need to stop working, eating and sleeping....

Thats nothing... do the horror challenge and see people on 125+ movies at this point... some people have hit 250+ in a month.

She does have a good list, but I think I noticed something on her list that I was doing wrong... On the checklist for Film winner of a Decade... I was putting only movies that won "Best Picture" in that decade... but I see she is putting any film that won an award... am i doing this wrong?

davidh777
02-09-12, 03:55 PM
Just started The Two Towers. The Riders of Rogan rule, and Eowyn FT, er, W.

Mondo Kane
02-09-12, 07:09 PM
(Random observation/remark of the day)

After seeing a few 1940s movies in this marathon (Bells of St. Mary's, among them) I noticed that there was some line-alterations in The Pledge of Allegiance. "Under God" wasn't said. Odd, because you think people wouldn't have problems saying that back then instead of in today's times.

Thats nothing... do the horror challenge and see people on 125+ movies at this point... some people have hit 250+ in a month.


The Horror challenge is much easier to do because there's plenty of films to choose from that rarely exceed the 85-minute mark. You can quickly breeze through them and rack up big numbers.

The Oscar challenge is, indeed, more of a challenge since 2-hour films are very common. Plus, if they're dramatic enough, they can easily drain you and slow you down (As taken from my experience :o)

Travis McClain
02-09-12, 07:33 PM
(Random observation/remark of the day)

After seeing a few 1940s movies in this marathon (Bells of St. Mary's, among them) I noticed that there was some line-alterations in The Pledge of Allegiance. "Under God" wasn't said. Odd, because you think people wouldn't have problems saying that back then instead of in today's times.

It wasn't added until the Red Scare 50s, when it was important to tell the world that we were a Christian nation--unlike those godless, heathen Soviets.

lisadoris
02-09-12, 08:07 PM
.She does have a good list, but I think I noticed something on her list that I was doing wrong... On the checklist for Film winner of a Decade... I was putting only movies that won "Best Picture" in that decade... but I see she is putting any film that won an award... am i doing this wrong?
I always interpreted it as a film that won any award during the decade in question but if it's supposed to be limited to films that won Best Picture please let me know (that will change my list quite a bit).

Travis McClain
02-09-12, 08:10 PM
I always interpreted it as a film that won any award during the decade in question but if it's supposed to be limited to films that won Best Picture please let me know (that will change my list quite a bit).

I have always interpreted it as "any category winner." (Though, oddly, I haven't checked off the 2000s yet myself, it seems...)

popcorn
02-09-12, 11:44 PM
Haven't watched much in the last couple of days but decided to watch The Deer Hunter for the first time. Just finished the first act. I must say I understand how important it was for the time, post-Vietnam and all but so far I think Apocalypse Now is a much better film.

gp1086
02-10-12, 12:48 AM
Watched Mystic River for the first time tonight. Freakin loved it! The performances are simply brilliant - obviously Penn and Robbins who both won Oscars, but also Marcia Gay Harden (nomination), Kevin Bacon, Laurence Fishbourne, and all the kids. Actually I'm not sure there is even a mediocre performance in this film. So glad I checked this out after so much time.

davidh777
02-10-12, 01:52 AM
I had interpreted "Watch a Film Winner From the Following Decades:" as a Best Picture winner since "Film" is kind of a given, but then maybe it should have been "Watch a Picture Winner." Seems like any winner would be a little easy but it would still require going back to many decades. Sounds like we're going to need an official ruling from The Monkees.

gp1086
02-10-12, 02:04 AM
Sounds like we're going to need an official ruling from The Monkees.
Unnecessary :)

The Monkee's List from last year's challenge (http://forum.dvdtalk.com/10608525-post2.html)

Included on the decade checklist are Juno, Leaving Las Vegas, etc - so no need to be a Best Picture winner or even nomination.

lisadoris
02-10-12, 07:50 AM
Finished Swing Time this morning and it's my first Fred Astaire / Ginger Rogers film. I never knew the song "The Way You Look Tonight" came from that film. Could have done without the black face routine in the film but otherwise the choreography was lovely.

Indy24LA
02-10-12, 10:42 AM
Watched Glengarry Glen Ross for the first time. There should be a drinking game assoicated with this movie, take a shot every time someone says "leads" and see who dies from alcohol poisoning first.

davidh777
02-10-12, 01:49 PM
Finished Swing Time this morning and it's my first Fred Astaire / Ginger Rogers film. I never knew the song "The Way You Look Tonight" came from that film. Could have done without the black face routine in the film but otherwise the choreography was lovely.

Bravo on your excellent choice! :clap:

I've seen every Fred & Ginger film multiple times so I consider myself something of a minor authority on the subject. :) Swing Time is still my favorite, and it's the first one I saw. Way back when Fred Astaire died, one of the local channels paid tribute by airing Swing Time late that night, and I was transfixed. (Note: They cut the blackface scene so I didn't see it till home video many years later.)

It's totally true about the song. The studios hired top-drawer Tin Pan Alley talent, so a lot of Gershwin/Kern/Berlin standards came out of these and other films. Side note that two great standards--"One for My Baby (And One More for the Road)" and "My Shining Hour"--came out of a relatively obscure Fred Astaire-post-Ginger movie called The Sky's the Limit, which has never been released on DVD. Warner Archive hinted that they were working on it, and they also released A Damsel in Distress last year--that's a Fred picture without Ginger (they did a few more together though) that introduced "A Foggy Day" and "Nice Work if You Can Get It." This is not just film history but pop-culture history.

Darkgod
02-10-12, 04:43 PM
The Horror challenge is much easier to do because there's plenty of films to choose from that rarely exceed the 85-minute mark. You can quickly breeze through them and rack up big numbers.

The Oscar challenge is, indeed, more of a challenge since 2-hour films are very common. Plus, if they're dramatic enough, they can easily drain you and slow you down (As taken from my experience :o)

I get your point but... even if someone hits 150 movies in the oscars... at 2 hours apiece thats 300 hours.... tops on the horror was 333, at 1 1/2 hours thats still 500+ hours.

Darkgod
02-10-12, 04:45 PM
I always interpreted it as a film that won any award during the decade in question but if it's supposed to be limited to films that won Best Picture please let me know (that will change my list quite a bit).

No need.... the ruling shows you were doing it right, and I was wrong. I figured I was wrong.

Ash Ketchum
02-10-12, 06:54 PM
Finished Swing Time this morning and it's my first Fred Astaire / Ginger Rogers film. I never knew the song "The Way You Look Tonight" came from that film. Could have done without the black face routine in the film but otherwise the choreography was lovely.

Astaire clearly made an effort to avoid the "minstrel show" aspect of doing blackface. His makeup is not dark-skinned and doesn't have thick white lips the way Al Jolson's and Eddie Cantor's blackface makeup did at the time. (Check them out for contrast.) Also, Astaire's number, "Bojangles of Harlem," was a tribute to Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, the greatest and most influential tap dancer of the era. Astaire would have been horrified if anyone thought there was any element of disrespect in his portrayal. I imagine Astaire must have been asked about this later in his career and I wonder what his response was.

lisadoris
02-10-12, 09:10 PM
It's totally true about the song. The studios hired top-drawer Tin Pan Alley talent, so a lot of Gershwin/Kern/Berlin standards came out of these and other films. Side note that two great standards--"One for My Baby (And One More for the Road)" and "My Shining Hour"--came out of a relatively obscure Fred Astaire-post-Ginger movie called The Sky's the Limit, which has never been released on DVD. Warner Archive hinted that they were working on it, and they also released A Damsel in Distress last year--that's a Fred picture without Ginger (they did a few more together though) that introduced "A Foggy Day" and "Nice Work if You Can Get It." This is not just film history but pop-culture history.
Good info to know, thanks!

Astaire clearly made an effort to avoid the "minstrel show" aspect of doing blackface. His makeup is not dark-skinned and doesn't have thick white lips the way Al Jolson's and Eddie Cantor's blackface makeup did at the time. (Check them out for contrast.) Also, Astaire's number, "Bojangles of Harlem," was a tribute to Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, the greatest and most influential tap dancer of the era. Astaire would have been horrified if anyone thought there was any element of disrespect in his portrayal. I imagine Astaire must have been asked about this later in his career and I wonder what his response was.
I could tell that the makeup was different but the blackface was still problematic for a couple reasons. First, that ghastly parade float mock-up of Robinson told the audience that the dance number was supposed to be a tribute - Astaire didn't need the makeup to get that point across. Second, Astaire kept the blackface make-up on throughout the entire next scene which had absolutely nothing to do with the preceding musical number or Bill Robinson.

Through no fault of my own I ended up watching three movies whose main characters were just horrid for one reason or another. I didn't care at all for There Will Be Blood and Daniel Day-Lewis certainly played an extremely convincing bastard. Rex Harrison in My Fair Lady wasn't nearly as horrid but good grief my modern-day sensibilities kept screaming for Audrey Hepburn to run far, far away from his character. And I have always pitied Adolph Caesar's character in A Soldier's Story. That film is one of the few instances where I'm happy they changed the ending from what is was in the original source material.

shadokitty
02-11-12, 12:39 AM
Just finished Bride of Frankenstein. As far as I know, I think it is the only Classic Universal Monster Movie to be nominated for an Oscar, though I may be wrong as I don't own them all. I only own the Frankenstein, Dracula, and Creature from the Black Lagoon Legacy Collections.

Mao
02-11-12, 12:55 AM
Tonight marks the halfway point of the challenge!

Hoping to inch past last year's total....I have to hunker down tomorrow!

Back to the flick!

Travis McClain
02-11-12, 01:24 AM
Just finished Training Day, another first time viewing. I don't think I've ever seen Denzel Washington appear to have as much fun as in the first ~20 minutes of this! I'm rather surprised at the nominations, though, for him (Best Actor) and Ethan Hawke (Best Supporting Actor) for a film that is largely a run-of-the-mill turn-of-the-century crooked cop story. They did a spectacular job creating environments, and had some great OMG moments but it was still fairly predictable overall and I found myself wondering about some plot holes along the way. Fun movie, though!

Training Day [2001 Awards]
(W) Actor in a Leading Role - Denzel Washington ("Alonzo")
(N) Actor in a Supporting Role - Ethan Hawke ("Jake")

HyperWeather
02-11-12, 01:40 AM
I also watched my first Fred Astaire/Ginger Rogers movie (The Gay Divorcee) and fell in love, really looking forward to discovering more of them.

I've been sticking to my rule for this challenge so far of only watching new to me movies, or movies from my unwatched pile but I think I'm going to have to break my rule this weekend, the West Side Story episodes of Glee have been making me want to rewatch it.

BobO'Link
02-11-12, 04:51 AM
Just finished Bride of Frankenstein. As far as I know, I think it is the only Classic Universal Monster Movie to be nominated for an Oscar, though I may be wrong as I don't own them all. I only own the Frankenstein, Dracula, and Creature from the Black Lagoon Legacy Collections.
There was also:
The Invisible Man Returns: 1940 - Special Effects (Photographic Effects)
The Invisible Woman: 1941 - Special Effects (Photographic Effects)
Invisible Agent: 1942 - Special Effects (Photographic Effects)
Phantom of the Opera: 1943 - Art Direction, Cinematography, Music, Sound Recording

BobO'Link
02-11-12, 09:15 PM
All this talk about Swing Time reminded me I have several Astaire/Rogers films I'd not opened/watched so as I finished Farscape this morning, wrapping up my TVonDVD watching, I thought "why not?" and started Academy Award films with 4 from that team, 3 of which were nominated (1 win). I really enjoy watching them dance. Even though I know those dance routines took *lots* of practice they look effortless. Most of the music is excellent, although in 2 of the films I felt the "main" production number went on *way* too long (one was 20 minutes, the song won the award for the category, and neither the song nor routine was that good IMHO). I'm sure audiences in those years ate 'em up in spite of the length.

Greg MacGuffin
02-11-12, 11:18 PM
So it looks like James Earl Jones, Dick Smith and Oprah Winfrey are receiving this year's Governor's Awards. Am I correct in assuming that any films that their work appeared in would be eligible for the challenge, regardless of whether they received nominations?

Ash Ketchum
02-12-12, 07:23 AM
So it looks like James Earl Jones, Dick Smith and Oprah Winfrey are receiving this year's Governor's Awards. Am I correct in assuming that any films that their work appeared in would be eligible for the challenge, regardless of whether they received nominations?

Why is Oprah receiving a Governor's Award? What the hell has she done to enhance American cinema?

lisadoris
02-12-12, 11:50 AM
Why is Oprah receiving a Governor's Award? What the hell has she done to enhance American cinema?
She received the Humanitarian Award which is less about enhancing cinema and more about helping humanity. She's not the best actress by any stretch but she's coughed up a ton of cash and time for various causes.

davidh777
02-12-12, 01:32 PM
Just knocked a big one off the unwatched list: The Dirty Dozen! :banana: I never realized it was a caper flick rather than a combat picture. Basically all I knew about it was: Lee Marvin's mug, big cast, and the bit in Sleepless in Seattle. :)

I also watched my first Fred Astaire/Ginger Rogers movie (The Gay Divorcee) and fell in love, really looking forward to discovering more of them.

I've been sticking to my rule for this challenge so far of only watching new to me movies, or movies from my unwatched pile but I think I'm going to have to break my rule this weekend, the West Side Story episodes of Glee have been making me want to rewatch it.

All this talk about Swing Time reminded me I have several Astaire/Rogers films I'd not opened/watched so as I finished Farscape this morning, wrapping up my TVonDVD watching, I thought "why not?" and started Academy Award films with 4 from that team, 3 of which were nominated (1 win). I really enjoy watching them dance. Even though I know those dance routines took *lots* of practice they look effortless. Most of the music is excellent, although in 2 of the films I felt the "main" production number went on *way* too long (one was 20 minutes, the song won the award for the category, and neither the song nor routine was that good IMHO). I'm sure audiences in those years ate 'em up in spite of the length.

I love all this talk about Fred and Ginger--I'm among my peeps! :grouphug: It's totally true about the final production numbers in the first few movies--they go on forever, like "The Continental." Offhand I don't know which ones qualify for the challenge but I tend to think of them in a variety of tiers: Top, for the best films; second, for the very enjoyable films with minor drawbacks such as too much time devoted to second-banana characters; and third, for the ones that are still worth watching but have some significant flaws.

Top tier:
Swing Time
Top Hat

Second tier:
The Gay Divorcee
Follow the Fleet
Shall We Dance
Carefree

Third Tier:
Roberta
Flying Down to Rio
The Barkleys of Broadway
The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle

Indy24LA
02-12-12, 03:54 PM
Just checked off Lawrence of Arabia from my never watched list (the ultimate sausage fest film). Now on to The Wild Bunch.

Ash Ketchum
02-12-12, 04:16 PM
Just checked off Lawrence of Arabia from my never watched list (the ultimate sausage fest film). Now on to The Wild Bunch.

How many of you who've seen THE DIRTY DOZEN haven't seen THE WILD BUNCH yet? Or vice versa. You can't see one without the other. (Ernest Borgnine and Robert Ryan are in both.)

Travis McClain
02-12-12, 04:16 PM
Just checked off Lawrence of Arabia from my never watched list (the ultimate sausage fest film). Now on to The Wild Bunch.

I love Lawrence. It would be #1 on my Flickchart, except for my longstanding love affairs with Batman and The Wizard of Oz. I might even break down and give it another view this month, though I'm trying to hold off until the forthcoming Blu-ray release. I don't know why it seems important that I not watch it on DVD again before then.

As for me, last night I popped in Ghost World for my third viewing in as many years. I love that movie! Its lone nomination was for the screenplay. I recently bought the published version of the screenplay and I think I'm gonna carve out a little while in my evening tonight to read through it.

Ghost World [2001 Awards]
(N) Writing (Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published) - Written by Daniel Clowes & Terry Zwigoff

Travis McClain
02-12-12, 04:18 PM
How many of you who've seen THE DIRTY DOZEN haven't seen THE WILD BUNCH yet? Or vice versa. You can't see one without the other. (Ernest Borgnine and Robert Ryan are in both.)

I have yet to see either. I almost watched The Wild Bunch ten years ago when I visited a friend of mine out in Vegas (he was stationed at Nellis AFB at the time), but his DVD wasn't in its case.

Indy24LA
02-12-12, 04:30 PM
How many of you who've seen THE DIRTY DOZEN haven't seen THE WILD BUNCH yet? Or vice versa. You can't see one without the other. (Ernest Borgnine and Robert Ryan are in both.)

Sounds like I need to get The Dirty Dozen for next weekend. I honestly can't remember if I've seen it.

I think Blu-ray was invented for films like Lawrence of Arabia.

BobO'Link
02-12-12, 06:03 PM
How many of you who've seen THE DIRTY DOZEN haven't seen THE WILD BUNCH yet? Or vice versa. You can't see one without the other. (Ernest Borgnine and Robert Ryan are in both.)
While I've seen both I've not yet watched/opened my copy of The Wild Bunch. It's been *years* since I've seen that film (20+?). I went through about half of my unopened piles today pulling out the films which qualify for this challenge and that was one which made it into the "hope to get to it this year" pile. :)

I watched a couple more musicals before moving on. One was Kiss Me Kate, which I was surprised to learn was originally filmed in 3D. While watching, one shot was of Howard Keel literally flying feet first toward the screen. I though "that looks like a cheesy 3D move" and watching the on disk documentary I found it was that exactly! That documentary also indicated it only had a few 3D showings as the fad had started to die off by the time it made it to the theatres.

Watching Kiss me Kate got me wanting to open The Taming of the Shrew but after watching The Band Wagon I moved on to Brazil. I picked up the Criterion a few months back and it's been *years* since I've watched this film. It was a blast! Much better than I'd remembered (I last saw it over 15 years ago).

I currently trying to decide what to watch next. That unopened pile has some *great* titles in it - it's a tough choice! :)

... and I just found 3 Audrey Hepburn films (Funny Face, Roman Holiday, and Breakfast at Tiffany's) in another unopened pile I'd forgotten about!...

CardiffGiant
02-12-12, 10:20 PM
I just watched Midnight Cowboy and I was underwhelmed. I had very little expectation going into it (the only clip I'd ever seen is the famous, "I'm walking here"), but I found the performances to be good (especially Hoffman), but the storyline seemed uninteresting. Perhaps someone can shed some light on what I'm missing. Or, maybe the film feels underwhelming to others as well.

Tomorrow, I'm tentatively planning to finally see The Sound of Music; how it has eluded me this long is a mystery, which probably has to do with my earlier aversion to most musicals.

Ash Ketchum
02-12-12, 11:29 PM
I just watched Midnight Cowboy and I was underwhelmed. I had very little expectation going into it (the only clip I'd ever seen is the famous, "I'm walking here"), but I found the performances to be good (especially Hoffman), but the storyline seemed uninteresting. Perhaps someone can shed some light on what I'm missing. Or, maybe the film feels underwhelming to others as well.


MIDNIGHT COWBOY was a total fantasy even at the time (which must have been why it managed to win the Oscar despite being "X-rated"). I was taken in by it because I was a naive 16-year-old when it came out and "Everybody's Talkin' at Me" kind of suckered me in. Hell, I even read the book. But when I saw it again a few years later I was appalled at how dated it was. (Kind of like EASY RIDER, in that regard.) The least dated 1960s counterculture film? Roger Corman's THE WILD ANGELS. Still bowls me over. But, of course, it got no Oscar noms.

gp1086
02-13-12, 12:54 AM
Checked out Braveheart for the first-time tonight. Loved it! A 3-hour film deserving of its runtime - it really allowed the story to unfold and was paced brilliantly.

We just passed the halfway mark and I'm 50% through my checklist with this one!

davidh777
02-13-12, 01:36 AM
I saw The Wild Bunch many years ago; it was just The Dirty Dozen that had eluded me.

Congrats to those who have been checking big items off their list! I saw Lawrence on the big screen probably 20+ years ago after a restoration. :drool:

Kiss Me Kate has been rumored for a 3D Archive release (Dial M for Murder has also been rumored); who knows if it will really happen, though.

gp1086
02-13-12, 01:40 AM
Lawrence of Arabia = 227 minutes! :eek:

Have heard great things about O'Toole's performance, but will need to set aside quite some time for this one!

Travis McClain
02-13-12, 03:47 AM
Lawrence of Arabia = 227 minutes! :eek:

Have heard great things about O'Toole's performance, but will need to set aside quite some time for this one!

The thing is, as great as O'Toole was in that, he may not even be the best part. It's one of those rare films where seemingly everything is perfect, from the music to the dialog, from the performances to the cinematography, from the costuming to the action... It's amazing. After seeing that, I'm much harsher on all other "epics." Gladiator? Bored me! :P

As for me, I just found and streamed a short film called Copy Shop (11:32) that was one of the Best Short Film nominees in 2001. I really enjoyed this one! It's almost like a sort of Fantasia sequence. It's a perfect microcosm for exploring how the short film format allows for aesthetic choices that are not particularly practical in a feature. Well worth taking the time to stream it for those looking to add to their viewing totals.

<iframe src="http://player.vimeo.com/video/10054467?title=0&amp;byline=0&amp;portrait=0" width="400" height="300" frameborder="0" webkitAllowFullScreen mozallowfullscreen allowFullScreen></iframe><p><a href="http://vimeo.com/10054467">Copy Shop</a> from <a href="http://vimeo.com/user3341663">Nishant Kumar</a> on <a href="http://vimeo.com">Vimeo</a>.</p>

Copy Shop [2001 Awards]
(N) Short Film (Live Action) - Virgil Widrich

davidh777
02-13-12, 03:59 AM
O'Toole's blue eyes were six feet tall in the theater :eek: :drool:

Travis McClain
02-13-12, 04:08 AM
Hey! Check it out, y'all! I found a website that collects short films that are available to stream online. They have a collection of 19 Oscar-nominated shorts. Note: The shorts don't stream from this site directly. Rather, they link you to whichever site is offering the stream. I know that I'm always interested to watch more short films but they're almost impossible to come by without conducting an investigation so I thought this might prove helpful to some of you.

Short of the Week - Oscar Films (http://www.shortoftheweek.com/category/collection/oscar-films/)

Also, if you go to Zanita Films' website (http://www.zanitafilms.com/awards.htm), you can stream or download the short film, Fifty Percent Grey (a 2001 nominee for Best Short Film - Animated). There are other shorts available there, but it's the only one that was nominated for an Oscar.

Another short I found online: Give Up Yer Aul Sins from Brown Bag Films:
<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/6dMOk4EQybQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

One more website to check is Online Short Films. They have a collection of Oscar nominees (http://onlineshortfilms.net/browse-oscar-nominee-videos-1-date.html) and Oscar winners (http://onlineshortfilms.net/browse-oscar-winner-videos-1-date.html).

Ash Ketchum
02-13-12, 08:25 AM
I watched a couple more musicals before moving on. One was Kiss Me Kate, which I was surprised to learn was originally filmed in 3D. While watching, one shot was of Howard Keel literally flying feet first toward the screen. I though "that looks like a cheesy 3D move" and watching the on disk documentary I found it was that exactly! That documentary also indicated it only had a few 3D showings as the fad had started to die off by the time it made it to the theatres.


I've seen a lot of original 3-D prints on the big screen, including KISS ME KATE, which I took my daughter to see one New Year's Eve about 20 years ago. We both loved it. I thought it had the best use of 3-D, in terms of composition and production design, of any 3-D movie from that period I've seen. The process was used well and did not rely on throwing things at the camera the way so many westerns and adventure pictures from that period did with their cascading arrays of spears, tomahawks and burning arrows.

mrcellophane
02-13-12, 12:47 PM
If anyone lives in Oklahoma, the Oklahoma City Museum of Art is currently doing an "Oscar Tune-Up" and showing a lot of the more obscure nominees for this year. Saturday I went to see all of the nominated animated and live action shorts. This was the first year my schedule allowed me to go, and I had such a wonderful time!

Of the animated shorts, Wild Life and La Luna were my favorites. The former was gorgeous and so very confident with its storytelling. Of course, La Luna just reaffirmed that Pixar is amazing at setting tone and being charming.

Of the live action shorts, Tuba Atlantic was definitely the best of the bunch. It was poignant and hilarious. It reminded me a lot of the film Kitchen Tale.

CardiffGiant
02-13-12, 02:21 PM
MIDNIGHT COWBOY was a total fantasy even at the time (which must have been why it managed to win the Oscar despite being "X-rated"). I was taken in by it because I was a naive 16-year-old when it came out and "Everybody's Talkin' at Me" kind of suckered me in. Hell, I even read the book. But when I saw it again a few years later I was appalled at how dated it was. (Kind of like EASY RIDER, in that regard.) The least dated 1960s counterculture film? Roger Corman's THE WILD ANGELS. Still bowls me over. But, of course, it got no Oscar noms.

I almost mentioned it feeling dated when I posted my original comment, but I didn't want it to come off the wrong way. There are films that seem dated to me, but still have an impact. I wasn't yet born when Midnight Cowboy was released, so I thought some of the impact may have escaped me for that reason. Generally speaking, my favorite time period in film history is the mid-50s to the mid-to-late-60s, so I've seen plenty of "dated" films that I still enjoyed.

The comment about Easy Rider is an interesting one because it hit me emotionally when I first saw it as a student in college (again, despite not being around for that era) probably because of the social commentary on squashing individualism, the soundtrack, and the celebration of the American landscape. Fast forward a number of years and I show it in my classroom and it seems to have little impact on on students. I'm not sure of the exact reason, perhaps film has changed too much since that time.

Thanks again for the comment, it's always good to hear others' perspectives of the films. It's my favorite part of the challenges.

BobO'Link
02-13-12, 05:47 PM
I've seen a lot of original 3-D prints on the big screen, including KISS ME KATE, which I took my daughter to see one New Year's Eve about 20 years ago. We both loved it. I thought it had the best use of 3-D, in terms of composition and production design, of any 3-D movie from that period I've seen. The process was used well and did not rely on throwing things at the camera the way so many westerns and adventure pictures from that period did with their cascading arrays of spears, tomahawks and burning arrows.
I think that's what surprised me the most. That *one* scene stood out but nothing else really did. It was watching that mini-docu that clued me in. The shot of several studio execs watching with the glasses was interesting as they look like polarized lenses. I'd thought 3D from this era was all done with red/blue separation. I watched the 3D out-takes, which were very well done. While stuff *was* thrown "at" the screen it really didn't have that cheesy "LOOK! We're in 3D!" feeling. I believe one of the comments was "we didn't want to just throw stuff but make it look natural". I believe they pulled it off for the most part. Part of me wants to re-watch it now that I know it was originally done for 3D and actively *look* for those scenes.

BobO'Link
02-13-12, 06:06 PM
...Tomorrow, I'm tentatively planning to finally see The Sound of Music; how it has eluded me this long is a mystery, which probably has to do with my earlier aversion to most musicals.
I, too, have an aversion to most musicals (although you couldn't tell it by looking at my list having started with *6* of them!). The Sound of Music is one of a *very* small handful I own and actively recommend to people. I saw it when first released (on a *huge* screen - the same theater where I also saw How the West was Won during its original release and in Cinerama format) and liked it then. The music in that one *belongs* and is natural. The others in that select group are My Fair Lady, Fiddler on the Roof, Mary Poppins, and Paint your Wagon. While the ones I watched to start this challenge *were* mostly enjoyable, IMHO they're not in the same league as those 5 as far as plot and overall musical quality is concerned.

Mao
02-13-12, 10:36 PM
If anyone lives in Oklahoma, the Oklahoma City Museum of Art is currently doing an "Oscar Tune-Up" and showing a lot of the more obscure nominees for this year. Saturday I went to see all of the nominated animated and live action shorts. This was the first year my schedule allowed me to go, and I had such a wonderful time!

Of the animated shorts, Wild Life and La Luna were my favorites. The former was gorgeous and so very confident with its storytelling. Of course, La Luna just reaffirmed that Pixar is amazing at setting tone and being charming.

Of the live action shorts, Tuba Atlantic was definitely the best of the bunch. It was poignant and hilarious. It reminded me a lot of the film Kitchen Tale.

Would love to find time to get to the theater to see the Shorts Festivals....I think Itunes starts selling them this Friday....Comcast (and some other cable company) starts renting packages on the 21st., but "La Luna" will not be available....drat!

popcorn
02-13-12, 10:49 PM
After serious delay, I finally watched In The Name of the Father. Surprisingly I enjoyed it and was surprised it didn't earn any Oscars. 1993 was a hard year with Philadelphia and Schindler's List.

R.I.P. Pete Postlethwaite

Travis McClain
02-14-12, 12:08 AM
Stopped by the library today and found they had Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India on DVD, so I checked that out. It's quite likable, though fairly predictable and formulaic (at least, as formulaic as a musical about cricket can be!). It was particularly odd for me, as I gorged on short films late last night/early this morning, but this runs 225 minutes! I have to say, I thought the pace was just about right (though I admit I was surprised several times when I had to pause it to learn I was not at all as far along as I thought I was).

This leaves me with just one of the 2001 Foreign Language Film nominees to see (Son of the Bride, which I haven't found yet). My personal ranking for the four would be:

Le fabuleaux destin d'Amelie Poulain
Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India
No Man's Land
Elling

I have to say, one thing Lagaan did really well was portray a cricket match. Often, sports sequences are reduced to the introduction of the game, a quick montage of highlights and then the dramatic conclusion. I think the cricket match in this goes on for at least an hour. I couldn't speak cricket with actual fans, necessarily, but I really do feel like I have a much better understanding of the game now!

Whoops! Forgot to mention: The lead actor, Aamir Khan, looks like Aaron Boone.

Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India [2001 Awards]
(N) Foreign Language Film - India

lisadoris
02-14-12, 06:57 AM
Now that I've actually seen The Dirty Dozen the scene in Sleepless in Seattle where they talk about it is even funnier than before!

Checked out A Better Life last night and loved it. I don't think it actually played near Detroit or I would have seen it in the theater.

shadokitty
02-14-12, 09:54 AM
Watched Superman last night. Christopher Reeve was almost as good a Superman as George Reeves was, and I thought it was a much better movie than Superman Returns.

Ash Ketchum
02-14-12, 11:09 AM
The comment about Easy Rider is an interesting one because it hit me emotionally when I first saw it as a student in college (again, despite not being around for that era) probably because of the social commentary on squashing individualism, the soundtrack, and the celebration of the American landscape. Fast forward a number of years and I show it in my classroom and it seems to have little impact on on students. I'm not sure of the exact reason, perhaps film has changed too much since that time.

Thanks again for the comment, it's always good to hear others' perspectives of the films. It's my favorite part of the challenges.

EASY RIDER came out when I was in high school and we talked about it in the earnest way that high schoolers would talk about something that captured the zeitgeist of the time. It's a film that was very much of its time, but that time didn't last very long. At a college screening of the film just a few short years later, everyone laughed at it. And when I saw it on a double bill with THE WILD ANGELS in 1978, the audience laughed at EASY RIDER, but applauded WILD ANGELS, which seemed just as powerful at that moment as it ever did. (And still does, if you ask me.)

Travis McClain
02-14-12, 01:04 PM
Watched Superman last night. Christopher Reeve was almost as good a Superman as George Reeves was, and I thought it was a much better movie than Superman Returns.

I know I've said it numerous times elsewhere, but I am compelled to make the observation anytime I encounter the chance for it: for my money, George Reeves remains the definitive Clark Kent.

BobO'Link
02-14-12, 08:03 PM
I know I've said it numerous times elsewhere, but I am compelled to make the observation anytime I encounter the chance for it: for my money, George Reeves remains the definitive Clark Kent.
Ditto.

gp1086
02-14-12, 09:16 PM
Checked out Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring for the first time today (actually half today, the other half yesterday). I would be completely remiss if I don't point out that this film is brilliantly crafted. Everything from the acting, directing, visual effects, costumes, sound, set design, etc. are done perfectly. At the same time, I can't say the story intrigued me all that much and I found myself rather disinterested at several points.

shadokitty
02-14-12, 11:03 PM
Checked out Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring for the first time today (actually half today, the other half yesterday). I would be completely remiss if I don't point out that this film is brilliantly crafted. Everything from the acting, directing, visual effects, costumes, sound, set design, etc. are done perfectly. At the same time, I can't say the story intrigued me all that much and I found myself rather disinterested at several points.

Do you plan to see the other two movies in the trilogy? You might like it better if watch the rest of the trilogy.

gp1086
02-14-12, 11:15 PM
Do you plan to see the other two movies in the trilogy? You might like it better if watch the rest of the trilogy.
You're probably right, and I do eventually plan to, even if it's not part of this challenge. Given all the recognition they've received (especially the third) and the way the first one ended, I think its probably fairest to look at the series as a whole, cohesive story. I'll also admit that had I read the books beforehand, I almost definitely would have been more intrigued. I still gave the movie a 6.5 out of 10, so it's not like I completely hated it or anything.

Travis McClain
02-15-12, 03:44 AM
Regarding The Lord of the Rings, I have Fellowship lined up soon as part of my focus on 2001 nominees and winners. I have only seen it once before; the extended version on DVD, and that was a decade ago. I'm always stunned when I encounter people who favor that part over the other two, since it amounts to little more than a really long Act I. (The Two Towers is easily my favorite of the trilogy.)

I watched I Am Sam this afternoon, which I checked out on DVD from the library. I found it rather predictable, and some of the use of music struck me as a little too...I dunno. "Gimmicky" sounds too harsh. I can only really say that I was conscious that it was trying very hard to use its soundtrack in a clever manner.

I do confess, though, that before the first 20 minutes were up, I cried. The idea of a father being, or feeling, inadequate broke my heart particularly as I'm 33, getting divorced and childless. I feel like that's a part of life I'll never get to enjoy and it absolutely crushed me to see the looks on little Dakota Fanning's face as she became aware of her dad's shortcomings but became protective of his feelings.

On an entirely peripheral note: What a terrific supporting cast! As a Trekkie, I really enjoyed seeing Brent Spiner as a shoe salesman and Rosalind Chao as a prostitute. Chao never got to show off her figure like that as Keiko O'Brien!

I Am Sam [2001 Awards]
(N) Actor in a Leading Role - Sean Penn (Sam Dawson)

davidh777
02-15-12, 02:27 PM
Sorry, Min :(

FOTR and ROTK are my favorite parts. FOTR is mostly set-up, true, but it's so masterfully crafted. I agree though that knowing where you're going affects this segment most of all.

That said, I just watched The Two Towers and it's a great movie. For some reason, it didn't strike me as much as the other two when seeing them in theaters, perhaps because it's the middle and doesn't offer resolution, but it's hard to pick apart what seemed like shortcomings now.

These are really one long movie in three parts so gp1086 can finish the rest of the story in the action challenge! :)

Travis McClain
02-15-12, 02:36 PM
Sorry, Min :(

FOTR and ROTK are my favorite parts. FOTR is mostly set-up, true, but it's so masterfully crafted. I agree though that knowing where you're going affects this segment most of all.

That said, I just watched The Two Towers and it's a great movie. For some reason, it didn't strike me as much as the other two when seeing them in theaters, perhaps because it's the middle and doesn't offer resolution, but it's hard to pick apart what seemed like shortcomings now.

These are really one long movie in three parts so gp1086 can finish the rest of the story in the action challenge! :)

For me, Fellowship is a very long opening and The Return of the King is nice but it seems to go on forever (and I still have not seen the extended version!). The Two Towers, though, has the lion's share of the action and it's just pure badass.

davidh777
02-15-12, 04:57 PM
It's a time dedication, no question. I don't really think of it as an undertaking because I'm a big fan, but I realize it can be a challenge if one doesn't know the differences between the races and places, etc. It's probably part of the achievement that something so inherently geeky reached such a wide audience.

I swear by the extended editions but have been known to watch the theatricals as background or when I want to FF through to favorite scenes.

davidh777
02-15-12, 05:28 PM
Watching Seven Brides for Seven Brothers and it looks quite good on upscaled DVD (the two-disc remaster from a few years ago; menus looked like crap, which had me concerned). Would love to see on Blu, of course, but I don't believe The Music Man and others did much in sales.

gp1086
02-15-12, 06:51 PM
I swear by the extended editions but have been known to watch the theatricals as background or when I want to FF through to favorite scenes.
That's nice how they released the extended editions for you hardcore fans. The copy of TFOTR I watched was 178 minutes in total and it appears the extended is 208 minutes. That's a lot of extra footage! Seems to be the same for both the sequels as well.

As a huge Harry Potter fan, I wish they did this for us. Heck, we don't even get most of the bonus scenes on the blu rays as special features.

gp1086
02-15-12, 06:53 PM
Watched True Grit (2010) - not too bad. Not sure how Hailee Steinfeld's character was classified as a supporting actress, but she did a damn nice job with the role.

BobO'Link
02-15-12, 10:23 PM
That's nice how they released the extended editions for you hardcore fans. The copy of TFOTR I watched was 178 minutes in total and it appears the extended is 208 minutes. That's a lot of extra footage! Seems to be the same for both the sequels as well.
Yes, all 3 films have copious amounts of extra footage! The extra footage added to all 3 films (over 2 hours total) is essential, IMHO. For example: on TFOTR some of that footage gives you the history of the ring and partially shows how Bilbo got it from Smeagol. If you've not read the books, that extra little bit really helps you understand the actions of certain characters later in the films. Occasionally I block out a day and watch all 3 extended versions back-to-back. I've only been able to do this uninterrupted once since purchasing ROTK.

gp1086
02-15-12, 10:40 PM
Yes, all 3 films have copious amounts of extra footage! The extra footage added to all 3 films (over 2 hours total) is essential, IMHO. For example: on TFOTR some of that footage gives you the history of the ring and partially shows how Bilbo got it from Smeagol. If you've not read the books, that extra little bit really helps you understand the actions of certain characters later in the films. Occasionally I block out a day and watch all 3 extended versions back-to-back. I've only been able to do this uninterrupted once since purchasing ROTK.
Wow! That's a lot of watching in one day.

On a similar note, I don't know how some of you all watch so many titles in one day - especially for this particular challenge. By the nature of most films that qualify, the movies I watch are generally 2+ hours and quite emotionally engaging. Tough for me to watch back-to-back as if I were watching lots of comedies, cheesy horror films, or reality TV shows. It may make a difference that I'm only doing first-watches. I'm usually one film a day, sometimes two. To each their own, though, I guess.

I've loved this challenge and how it has introduced me to classics I've never seen. But I'm also kind of looking forward to watching some completely non-Oscar, non-engaging new comedy titles from my Netflix queue like Adventureland and Bachelor Party, once the challenge is complete.

davidh777
02-16-12, 01:05 AM
I've always wanted to have an extended-trilogy marathon but never found the time :(

Indy24LA
02-16-12, 10:08 AM
Just watched The Conversation for the first time. Slow burning film, but nice back story for Hackman's character in Enemy of the State, could almost be a prequel.

Mao
02-16-12, 11:43 AM
Focusing on as many Blus in my collection as I can get to this year.

Picked up "To Kill A Mockingbird" as a blind buy a couple weeks ago (had the coupon, so I figured, "Why not?"). Can't believe after all these years, I hadn't seen it.

I may get flamed for this, and maybe I was tired....but am I the only one who doesn't get the hype about this movie?

First, it's about the kids and the neighborhood, then it's about the trial, then it's back to the weird neighbor. Sad to say, but I just didn't get it? Is it just me? Do I need to watch it again?

Travis McClain
02-16-12, 12:17 PM
Focusing on as many Blus in my collection as I can get to this year.

Picked up "To Kill A Mockingbird" as a blind buy a couple weeks ago (had the coupon, so I figured, "Why not?"). Can't believe after all these years, I hadn't seen it.

I may get flamed for this, and maybe I was tired....but am I the only one who doesn't get the hype about this movie?

First, it's about the kids and the neighborhood, then it's about the trial, then it's back to the weird neighbor. Sad to say, but I just didn't get it? Is it just me? Do I need to watch it again?

It's been about twenty years since I last saw it, but it has stayed with me all this time. I think this is a case where it's important to know the context for the film in order to fully appreciate it. The story itself is a powerful statement against not just racism in general, but the Jim Crow laws that codified racism in the South.

Your mini bio says you're in Denver, and I have no way of knowing what (if any) familiarity you may have with Southern culture, but To Kill a Mockingbird really did depict a very important aspect that I don't think was ever on display so honestly in film: The enormous social stigma placed on white "race traitors" who dared to stand up for African-Americans. It's a strain that goes home with Atticus Finch and permeates every aspect of his life.

Remember, too, that the novel was published 11 July 1960 and the film opened 25 December 1962. That's pretty fast turnaround on an adaptation! The reason is that Harper Lee's story made a tremendous impact on culture, using art to comment on--and ultimately, affect--society. It was a powerful statement in the buildup for the civil rights movement of the 1960s; it was a declaration that fair-minded whites were growing more vocal and would no longer stand idly by as their fellow man was legally oppressed.

We're accustomed to discussing the significance of Star Wars for its place in the evolution of special effects and how it forever changed the standards for how movies should look. To Kill a Mockingbird cast a shadow not across movie aesthetics, but the tumultuous arena of race relations.

Out of this context, it may be easy to see it as just another somewhat disjointed, well-meaning but not-quite-there movie. There have been episodes of Law & Order grittier than To Kill a Mockingbird. But that's not the point, or why it is still celebrated today. It was a daring story unflinchingly dramatized in the most powerful medium of our era.

mrcellophane
02-16-12, 12:51 PM
Watching Seven Brides for Seven Brothers and it looks quite good on upscaled DVD (the two-disc remaster from a few years ago; menus looked like crap, which had me concerned). Would love to see on Blu, of course, but I don't believe The Music Man and others did much in sales.

I watched Seven Brides for Seven Brothers yesterday as well! Though I am a huge fan of musicals, I had never actually seen it. I do remember that TCM used it to show the terribleness of pan and scan. The cropping destroyed the intricate dance scenes. Which is sad because the choreography is really the standout feature - much more than the songs. I was interested in all the brothers (I only knew Howard Keel and Russ Tamblyn) so I looked them all up and found most were very accomplished dancers.

Agree about blu; it would be great!

Mao
02-16-12, 01:08 PM
MinLShaw,
Thanks for helping me out. I guess I should compare it to a "Do The Right Thing" for my generation. I guess I went into it the wrong way...

Travis McClain
02-16-12, 01:22 PM
I got distracted with my remarks about To Kill a Mockingbird that I forgot to comment on my own latest viewing!

I have now finally seen Mulholland Drive. I had to rent it via Vudu using some credit I had there for a Blu-ray purchase of some kind. That went surprisingly well. I wouldn't pay $2.99 to rent something often since I'm paying $7.99 a month for Netflix, but since I wanted to see this, couldn't find it elsewhere and had the credit, why not?

Anyway, I found Naomi Watts and Laura Elena Harring captivating to watch, on par with Bibi Andersson and Liv Ullmann in Persona and Elena Anaya and Natasha Yarovenko in Habitación en Roma [Room in Rome]. When the film was about the two of them, I was completely engrossed in it. The rest of the movie, though, just fell rather flat for me. Maybe it's because I had seen Memento for the first time a couple of weeks ago so maybe I was just kind of jaded toward the mystery unraveling aspects. I dunno. I just felt like it thought it was cleverer than it was, flirting with self-importance. I had a sense that some things were thrown into the movie for the sole purpose of confusing the viewer rather than contributing to the actual narrative.

I read on ICheckMovies.com a comment that insists it's a very polarizing movie. I'm sure it is for many people, but I find my own reaction more mixed. On the whole, I liked it. The inept assassin cracked me up, as did Billy Ray Cyrus. But I just can't get entirely behind a movie that wants to jerk me around just for the sake of doing so.

Also, I found it curious that the lone nomination was for Lynch as director. I wonder how he felt about that, since he not only wrote the movie, but personally oversaw the sound design and editing. I can picture him reviewing the list of nominees that year: "No Best Picture, damn! No Original Screenplay? Gah! None of my actresses? NOT EVEN THE SOUND CATEGORIES? ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?!"

Mulholland Drive [2001 Awards]
(N) Directing - David Lynch

Ash Ketchum
02-16-12, 01:36 PM
MinLShaw,
Thanks for helping me out. I guess I should compare it to a "Do The Right Thing" for my generation. I guess I went into it the wrong way...

It also helps if you've read the book by Harper Lee first. That was required reading in one of my adolescent grades and it was quite a powerful book. I've only seen the movie on television (early '70s) and, to be honest, I don't recall what my reaction was. But I need to see the movie again, esp. if I can do so on the big screen someday.

shadokitty
02-16-12, 01:40 PM
We had to read the book for To Kill a Mockingbird in Junior High first, and then we watched the movie right after reading the book. I remember it was quite a powerful book, and though the movie was powerful, reading the book helps, as the movie cuts a lot out.

Indy24LA
02-16-12, 02:24 PM
It also helps if you've read the book by Harper Lee first. That was required reading in one of my adolescent grades and it was quite a powerful book. I've only seen the movie on television (early '70s) and, to be honest, I don't recall what my reaction was. But I need to see the movie again, esp. if I can do so on the big screen someday.

It's my favorite book and Gregory Peck is one of my favorite actors, so it was pretty much a slam dunk for me to love the movie (which I do).

davidh777
02-16-12, 06:47 PM
I watched Seven Brides for Seven Brothers yesterday as well! Though I am a huge fan of musicals, I had never actually seen it. I do remember that TCM used it to show the terribleness of pan and scan. The cropping destroyed the intricate dance scenes. Which is sad because the choreography is really the standout feature - much more than the songs. I was interested in all the brothers (I only knew Howard Keel and Russ Tamblyn) so I looked them all up and found most were very accomplished dancers.

Agree about blu; it would be great!

It's kind of interesting that this two-disc edition has an alternate shoot in 1.77 that is not a pan-and-scan but an actual reshoot by the director. The sound and picture are not as good, though, and I agree that you really need the space to fit all the characters. (I believe this two-disc edition is also good because previous DVDs were non-anamorphic.)

I remember watching It's Always Fair Weather back in the VHS days, and when Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Michael Kidd were dancing side by side, it'd be two guys and one arm (probably Kidd's :lol:). (On topic, of course, because of Kidd's choreography in 7Bf7B.)

I'm shocked that you like musicals with a name of mrcellophane :)

davidh777
02-16-12, 07:33 PM
Knocked another big one off my unwatched list: The French Connection! :banana:

Though I'm having some second thoughts about watching action-crime Oscar winners when I can get credit for them next month. :) I have a lot still on my list.

Anyway, all I knew about this one was the name "Popeye Doyle," car chase, guy on the stairs getting shot in the back. Have to say that the ending postscript was pretty unsatisfying with what happened to some of those characters. Granted it's a true story, and it was the gritty '70s, but still.

I started rewatching with the Friedkin commentary and might watch the rest of it since Friedkin is usually pretty interesting.

Trevor
02-16-12, 08:18 PM
Hey! Check it out, y'all! I found a website that collects short films that are available to stream online.
Thanks for all those links! I love shorts, and haven't had a day bouncing from short to short for about a year I think. Hopefully work is slow tomorrow.
You're probably right, and I do eventually plan to, even if it's not part of this challenge. Given all the recognition they've received (especially the third) and the way the first one ended, I think its probably fairest to look at the series as a whole, cohesive story. I'll also admit that had I read the books beforehand, I almost definitely would have been more intrigued. I still gave the movie a 6.5 out of 10, so it's not like I completely hated it or anything.
You really should try to watch the whole trilogy, but the third is a bit overrated imho. Still great, but I prefer the first two. The third just got all the awards by default/association/last chance to reward the filmmakers.
The idea of a father being, or feeling, inadequate broke my heart particularly as I'm 33, getting divorced and childless. I feel like that's a part of life I'll never get to enjoy and it absolutely crushed me to see the looks on little Dakota Fanning's face as she became aware of her dad's shortcomings but became protective of his feelings.
You're way too young to even think about thinking that. I didn't find my true love and become a (step)father until 45.
For me, Fellowship is a very long opening and The Return of the King is nice but it seems to go on forever (and I still have not seen the extended version!). The Two Towers, though, has the lion's share of the action and it's just pure badass.
Amen!
Just watched The Conversation for the first time. Slow burning film, but nice back story for Hackman's character in Enemy of the State, could almost be a prequel.
Interesting idea, I might try to make a double feature next month.

Sondheim
02-16-12, 09:28 PM
It's been a while since a film devastated me as much as The Bridge, which was nominated for Best Foreign Film in 1959. Allegedly based on a true story, it tells of seven 16-year old German boys drafted into the German army in the very last days of World War 2. After only a day of training it is found out that the Americans will be rolling in at any minute, so the entire camp is mobilized to the front, and it is only through the intervention of a considerate commanding officer that the ill-prepared boys are kept from going with the rest of the men to their almost certain deaths. Since the boys are quite anxious to serve their country in some way, they are ordered to stand guard over the bridge in their hometown - not knowing that the bridge is strategically useless (and therefore presumably not a target for the Allies) and that the Germans are already planning to blow it up anyway. Things quickly spiral out of control, with predictable results.

It's hard to watch - the first half (at least) of the film is spent getting to know the boys and their family situations. You quickly see that the boys are enthusiastic to serve their country, and are unnecessarily daring. But in spite of all their shows of bravery, the fact of the matter is that they are still children, and they are still easily frightened. An added level of sadness and irony is added by the fact that it is the last days of the war, and most of the adults (including the military leaders) seem to be aware of the fact that the Germans are fighting a lost cause.

While the film does get you to empathize with the Germans, it does make it very clear that the boys' unthinking zealotry is the problem.

The film is a bit clunky, and some of the acting from the young ones leaves a bit to be desired (though it turns out that most of them have gone on to successful adult careers as German actors.) You also pretty much know where the story is going from the start (the description on the back of the DVD, in fact, makes it pretty clear where the film is headed) - though that doesn't diminish the impact of the final thirty minutes of the film. It's one of the toughest watches I've had in a long time.

gp1086
02-17-12, 01:53 AM
Watched Million Dollar Baby tonight and I didn't like it...I freakin' LOVED this movie. This is one of those rare occasions where my eyes were literally glued to the screen from start to finish, and I was completely enamored with the story. Swank is simply brilliant in her performance - Freeman and Eastwood also deliver some of the best performances I've seen from them (as director as well for Clint). I could go on and on, but I was floored by how much I enjoyed this. Easily my favorite of the challenge thus far.

davidh777
02-17-12, 02:19 PM
I'd like to see MDB again but it's a tough watch

gp1086
02-17-12, 02:53 PM
I'd like to see MDB again but it's a tough watch
Indeed

I knew nothing about the story beforehand and was completely shocked with the turn it took. Think it made the film all that much more enjoyable.

Ash Ketchum
02-17-12, 03:44 PM
There was quite a bit of controversy over MILLION DOLLAR BABY's ending when it came out. Advocates for the disabled were particularly outraged at it. I had a co-worker at the time whose wife was a prominent advocate here in New York, so I went to see the movie fully aware of all this and, to be honest, somewhat inclined to share my co-worker's point-of-view. So I came out with a pretty negative view of the movie.

davidh777
02-17-12, 06:43 PM
Spoilers, Ash

Ash Ketchum
02-17-12, 08:55 PM
Spoilers, Ash

I fixed it. Thanks.