Monday, January 22, 2018

CONTEST: The Predictions!


The predictions are in! Good luck to all the participants in the 2018 Film Actually Oscar Contest

Click the link below to see everyone's predictions:




N.B. - A "1" indicates your prediction. If you predict correctly, you keep the point. If not, then you get 0. In Best Picture, you get -1 for every wrong prediction.

Once the nominations have been announced, the official results will be posted shortly after.

INTERVIEW: Ildikó Enyedi


People often say love is strange, but Hungarian filmmaker Ildikó Enyedi takes it to a whole new level. In her latest film “On Body and Soul,” a pair of slaughterhouse co-workers strike up a romantic connection in their dreams, where they meet as deer in a forest. But to make things even more peculiar, these two individuals can barely even hold a conversation in their waking life. It’s a tough foundation on which to base a love story, but Enyedi somehow pulls it off. In a recent interview, Enyedi discussed the process of crafting this atypical romance, as well as her own surprise at the film’s warm reception by audiences and Oscar voters. Below is an edited version of our conversation.

Read more at The Awards Circuit

Sunday, January 21, 2018

CONTEST: See Who's Playing!


The time has come! In less than two days, this year's Oscar nominees will be announced. And as we wait in anticipation of the big day, 21 bloggers have signed up to test their predicting skills in the 6th annual Film Actually Oscar Contest. Among this year's entries are former winners Gautam and Joseph, as well as newbies like Edward Douglas from The Tracking Board. So get ready for a close competition and be sure to visit all the blogs below and show them some love. Good luck!

Me! - Film Actually
Edward - The Tracking Board
DeanyDeany Hendrick Cheng @ Medium
Heather - That Film Girl
Tony - Coogs Reviews
Stewart - Talkie Gazette
Gautam - The Cinemaholic (2014 and 2017 winner!)
Todd - All My Life I Wanted To Be a Blogster
Murtada - ME_Says (2015 runner-up!)*
Daniel - Chicago Cinema Circuit
Josh - The Cinematic Spectacle
Sam - Sam Watches Movies
Matt F. - Movie Awards Plus
Joe - The MN Movie Man
John - John Likes Movies
Joseph - For Your Consideration (2016 winner!)
Paul - Paul's Trip to the Movies
Jay - Life vs Film
Terence - Le Noir Auteur
Trevor - Trevor's View on Hollywood
Rob - MovieRob
Craig - Citizen Craig

*Winner decided on tiebreaker.

Remember:
- Your predictions are due by 6PM EST on Jan 22nd. They will then be posted here on a spreadsheet for everyone to see.
- Remember: once you have sent me the link, those will be entered as your FINAL predictions. No further changes will be accepted.

Click here for a reminder of all the rules/instructions.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

OSCAR WATCH: SAG Predictions


It's the last stop on the awards tour and it's a big one! Tomorrow night, the Screen Actors Guild will host their 24th awards ceremony and it's going to be an interesting indicator for the acting races. The 4 frontrunners - Gary Oldman, Frances McDormand, Sam Rockwell and Allison Janney - could potentially seal the deal if they win again. And I think that's exactly what's going to happen. Here's how I see it playing out:

Best Cast in a Motion Picture
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Best Male Actor in a Leading Role

Gary Oldman, “Darkest Hour”

Best Female Actor in a Leading Role
Frances McDormand, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Best Male Actor in a Supporting Role

Sam Rockwell, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Best Female Actor in a Supporting Role
Allison Janney, “I, Tonya”

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

REVIEW: On Body and Soul


Cinematic romance is often remembered for grand gestures. A passionate kiss in the rain, a last-gasp chase at the airport, a profound declaration of love. But there are others like “In Mood for Love” which take a more restrained approach. Ildikó Enyedi’s “On Body and Soul” falls into the latter camp, telling a unique story that portrays love on a mystical level.

Read more at The Awards Circuit

INTERVIEW: Ziad Doueiri


Ask Ziad Doueiri and he will tell you that he doesn’t make political films. But when you see his latest effort “The Insult” there’s no denying a politically engaged voice behind his filmmaking. Despite controversy surrounding his previous film (which even lead to his arrest), Doueiri continues to fearlessly spotlight unpleasant sociopolitical tensions in the Middle East with this gripping courtroom drama. Recently, I spoke to Doueiri to learn more about the background behind “The Insult” and its significance. In our interview, he was very candid about how his personal experiences with censorship and politics affected the film. Below is an edited version of our discussion.

Read more at The Awards Circuit

REVIEW: The Insult


Ziad Doueiri’s “The Insult," one of 9 films shortlisted for the Foreign Language Oscar, begins with a seemingly trivial altercation. A man named Yasser (Kamel El Basha) is tasked with fixing building code violations in a Lebanese community. One day at work, he is doused by a overhead drainpipe, which is illegally protruding from the home of a man named Tony (Adel Karam). Yasser informs Tony of the violation and asks him to fix the problem, but Tony refuses. Feeling an obligation to do his job, Yasser decides to fix the pipe without permission, which offends Tony and aggravates him to destroy the new installation. Now both men feel insulted, exchanging inflammatory words. All of this could be solved with an apology – which is what Tony requests – but of course, it’s not that simple.

Read more at The Awards Circuit

INTERVIEW: Chris Overton


Depicting an important topic we don’t often think about, “The Silent Child” is one of the most poignant and meaningful of this year’s shortlisted films for the Best Live Action Short Oscar. This tender-hearted drama is directed by Chris Overton, based on a story written by his fiancé Rachel Shenton, who also stars in the film. Shenton plays a social worker named Joanne, who takes a keen interest in the deaf child of middle class family and teaches her how to communicate. As their relationship grows, both Joanne and Libby’s lives are changed for the better. Recently I had the pleasure to speak to Overton, as we discussed his tender approach to the story and the importance of its commonly neglected message.

Read more at The Awards Circuit

INTERVIEW: Katja Bentrah


If your think shorts can’t be as powerful as feature-length films, then you probably haven’t seen “Watu Wote: All of us“. Based on a true story, this Oscar-shortlisted drama follows the harrowing experience of a group of bus passengers in 2015 Kenya, where tensions between Christians and Muslims are at an all-time high. As “Watu Wote: All of us” unfolds, the reason for this disharmony is revealed with palpable intensity, as a terrorist group attempts an attack. But what happens next comes as a surprise to both the terrorists and the audience. I recently caught up with director Katja Bentrah via phone, as we discussed how she turned this amazing story into an award-winning film. Below is an edited version of that interview.

Read more at The Awards Circuit

Friday, January 12, 2018

OSCAR WATCH: Critics Choice Awards


Just when you think you've got this Oscar race figured out, the Critics Choice throws up a surprise. While it seemed like "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" might steamroll through the season, it was "The Shape of Water" that came out on top last night. Guillermo del Toro's fantasy romance won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Production Design and Best Original Score to clinch the most awards. I'm now starting to think it can go all the way. Up next is the SAG Awards, where it's not up for the top prize. So things could get even more interesting ahead of the Oscar nominations. While we continue our attempt to make sense of the season, here are this year's Critics Choice winners for your perusal:

BEST PICTURE
The Shape of Water

BEST DIRECTOR
Guillermo del Toro – The Shape of Water

BEST ACTOR
Gary Oldman – Darkest Hour

BEST ACTRESS
Frances McDormand – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Sam Rockwell – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Allison Janney – I, Tonya

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

OSCAR WATCH: Critics Choice Predictions


Awards season train is charging right along as we head to our next major stop - the Critics Choice Awards. "The Shape of Water" leads all films in terms of nominations, but will it come out on top? Here are my predictions for tomorrow night's show.

BEST PICTURE
Lady Bird

BEST DIRECTOR
Guillermo del Toro – The Shape of Water

BEST ACTOR
Gary Oldman – Darkest Hour

BEST ACTRESS
Frances McDormand – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Sam Rockwell – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Allison Janney – I, Tonya

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

OSCAR WATCH: BAFTA Nominations


In the wee hours of the morning, the BAFTA nominations were announced and they've further complicated this unpredictable awards season. While "The Shape of Water" and "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" continued to gain momentum, the Brits went out on a limb for a few other films with local flavor, including "Darkest Hour" and "Film Stars Don't Die In Liverpool". It's going if any of that translates to Oscar, as BAFTA love is often a strong indicator of Academy support. Here is the full list of BAFTA nominees:

Best Film
Call Me By Your Name
Darkest Hour
Dunkirk
The Shape of Water
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

Best Director
Denis Villeneuve –​ Blade Runner 2049
Luca Guadagnino – Call Me By Your Name
Christopher Nolan – Dunkirk
Guillermo del Toro – The Shape of Water
Martin McDonagh – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

Best Actor
Timothée Chalamet – Call Me By Your Name
Jamie Bell – Film Stars Don't Die In Liverpool
Daniel Kaluuya – Get Out
Daniel Day Lewis – Phantom Thread
Gary Oldman – Darkest Hour

Best Actress
Annette Bening – Film Stars Don't Die In Liverpool
Sally Hawkins – The Shape of Water
Frances McDormand – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
Margot Robbie – I, Tonya
Saoirse Ronan – Lady Bird

Best Supporting Actor
Christopher Plummer – All The Money In The World
Hugh Grant – Paddington 2
Woody Harrelson - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
Sam Rockwell – Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri
Willem Dafoe – The Florida Project

Best Supporting Actress

Allison Janney – I, Tonya
Kristen Scott Thomas – Darkest Hour
Lesley Manville – Phantom Thread
Laurie Metcalf – Lady Bird
Octavia Spencer – The Shape of Water

Monday, January 8, 2018

OSCAR WATCH: Golden Globe Awards


Well, the Golden Globes were last night and the most surprising thing was that they weren't all that surprising! As expected, "Lady Bird", "The Shape of Water" and "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" had a good showing, with the latter leading the way with wins for Picture, Actress, Supporting Actor and Screenplay. In a night of protest against sexual misconduct, that film certainly reflected the zeitgeist in a major way. There's still a long awards journey ahead however, as I sense a potential backlash brewing. The Academy may decide to go for the less problematic "Lady Bird", which won the other Best Picture prize for Comedy/Musical, to go along with Saoirse Ronan's Best Actress win. Of course, the Golden Globes sometimes go their own way in relation to Oscars, so the following winners may or may not be your frontrunners. Here they are:

BEST PICTURE - DRAMA
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST PICTURE - COMEDY/MUSICAL
Lady Bird

BEST DIRECTOR
Guillermo del Toro - The Shape Of Water

BEST ACTOR - DRAMA
Gary Oldman - Darkest Hour

BEST ACTRESS - DRAMA
Frances McDormand - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST ACTOR - COMEDY/MUSICAL
James Franco - The Disaster Artist

BEST ACTRESS - COMEDY/MUSICAL
Saoirse Ronan - Lady Bird

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Sam Rockwell - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Allison Janney - I, Tonya

Saturday, January 6, 2018

OSCAR WATCH: Golden Globe Predictions


The Golden Globe Awards are tomorrow and I fully admit that I have no idea who's going to win. But that makes it all the more exciting, right? Here's my stab at predicting these awards, which will be handed out during their annual ceremony starting at 8pm EST and hosted by Seth Meyers.

BEST PICTURE - DRAMA
The Shape Of Water

BEST PICTURE - COMEDY/MUSICAL
Lady Bird

BEST DIRECTOR
Guillermo del Toro - The Shape Of Water

BEST ACTOR - DRAMA
Gary Oldman - Darkest Hour

BEST ACTRESS - DRAMA
Frances McDormand - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST ACTOR - COMEDY/MUSICAL
James Franco - The Disaster Artist

BEST ACTRESS - COMEDY/MUSICAL
Saoirse Ronan - Lady Bird

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Sam Rockwell - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Laurie Metcalf - Lady Bird

Monday, January 1, 2018

CONTEST: Predict the Oscar Nominations!


A new year has begun and that means it's time for another edition of the Film Actually Oscar Contest! As always, I anticipate a fun, friendly competition as we compete for bragging rights (and prizes, of course) as the best predictor of the Oscar nominations. The top prize will once again be a $50 gift card (USD, or the equivalent in another currency) for the Amazon store of your choice (US, UK, Canada etc). In addition, there are other bonus prizes up for grabs (read below).

GENERAL INFO/RULES
1. This contest is open to any interested bloggers.
2. To register: fill out the entry form below by 6PM US Eastern Time on January 21st, 2018.
3. To submit your predictions: send me (via twitter or email) a link to your blog post with your FINAL predictions. I will then save your predictions and enter them into my spreadsheet. Your predictions are due by 6PM US Eastern Time on January 22nd, 2018. Absolutely no changes to your predictions will be accepted after they have been submitted.
4. Here are the categories I need you to include:

BEST PICTURE
BEST DIRECTOR
BEST ACTOR
BEST ACTRESS
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
BEST EDITING
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY
BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
BEST SOUND MIXING
BEST SOUND EDITING
BEST COSTUME DESIGN
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
BEST MAKEUP & HAIRSTYLING
BEST ORIGINAL SONG(name the song, not just the film)

SCORING
Each correct prediction will earn you 1 point. However, in the Best Picture category, every wrong prediction will lose you 1 point. With the current rules for this category (anywhere between 5-10 nominees), this will force you to choose wisely!

PRIZES
1. The person with the highest score will receive a $50 online gift card (USD or the equivalent in another currency) for their relevant Amazon store (US, UK, Canada etc.).
2. In the event of a tie, the winner will be the person who scores highest in the Best Picture category. If there's still a tie, we'll go to Best Director and further down the list (in the order above) until the tie is broken. The loser of the tie will receive a DVD/Blu-ray of one of last year's Best Picture nominees (your choice).
3. Anyone who is the only person to predict a particular nomination correctly will receive a DVD/Blu-ray of one of last year's Best Picture nominees (your choice).