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2 Mar


Well hello out there fellow internet machine users.  I know its been way too long since my last post and I’m sure you all missed me so much…well all 5 of you that are regular readers.  Anywho, since I am a huge movie lover, and the Oscars are tonight, I I figured that I should jump on and post my Oscar predictions for some of the major categories…and I’ll keep it as short as possible.  Plus, for the first time since they expanded the best picture noms, I was actually able to watch all nine of them!  I did this not only because I have a hardcore passion for film, but because there are so many great movies out there these days and I don’t want to miss them.  From blockbuster action summer movies, to gorgeously shot indie films.  I just couldn’t miss these flicks any longer.  Oh and I was able to watch them all because I have no life…but that’s for another post.  So without an further delay, here are my 2014 Oscar Winner Predictions!  And I almost forgot, I am wearing a gorgeous grey hoodie, accompanied by dark grey warmup pants…all by Nike.  Just incase Joan Rivers is wondering….


BEST PICTURE:  12 YEARS A SLAVE – There were so many good films to come out this year.  Including one of my favs that wasn’t nominated, Lone Survivor.  Nevertheless, this category is lined with all sorts of movies.  From movies with majorly witty dialogue, to action adventures, an outer space spectacle, low budget indies and emotionally charged storylines.  This year’s best picture category is truly versatile.  If you haven’t watched many films this year, do yourself and a favor and enjoy all nine noms in this category….there really is something for everyone.  Although Her and Dallas Buyers Club were my favorites this year, 12 Years features a great adapted screen play, terrific directing and a cast that showed their acting chops throughout this courageous story.

ImageBEST ACTOR:  MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY – Finally we were staring at McConaughey this year not because he was working out shirtless on the beach somewhere.  Did anyone have a hotter year?  From his work in tv’s True Detective, Mud, Killer Joe and his chanting in Wolf of Wallstreet, McConaughey took himself out of the ‘chick flicks’ pigeonhole and lofted himself right to the top of the acting charts.  And to top it all off, he transformed his body and his career by giving the world Ron Wood in DBC.  Ejiofor is a close 2nd, but the man from Dazed and Confused is taking home the gold.

ImageBEST ACTRESS:  AMY ADAMS – This one is a three person race between Adams, Blanchett and Bullock.  But in the end, Adams gets it!


BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR:  JARED LETO – Fassbender was character was terrible, but his acting was terrific.  However, in my opinion, Jared Leto, aka Jordan Catalano, gave one of the greatest supporting performances I have ever seen.  I couldn’t take my eyes off of him and the delicateness of his characters personality, mixed with the fire was an unreal combination that just put me in a trance when he was on screen.

ImageBEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS:  JENNIFER LAWRENCE – Another great performance from the greatest young actress in the business.  I mean this girl is in her 20’s and she has three noms already!  June Squibb cracked me up in Nebraska, but Lawrence once again flexed her muscles in a film filled with A-Listers, and she was the brightest star shining.  Lupita Nyong’o could pull the upset…but only because she was ridiculous!

ImageBEST DIRECTOR:  ALFONSO CUARON – Whether you enjoyed this movie or not (most people either loved it or hated it), the directing was simply awesome.  Those shots were just…well…out of this world (pun intended!)!

ImageBEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM: THE HUNT – Only because star Mads Mikkelsen is so good in Hannibal!

ImageBEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY:  12 YEARS A SALVE – One word…powerful.  Before Midnight could pull the upset.


BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY:  AMERICAN HUSTLE  – Great story and should win…but I wish would be Her…Joaquin was robbed of a nom for best actor, so I hope this movie stacks up the awards in other categories.

ImageBEST ANIMATED FEATURE: FROZEN – Disney modern day classic gets the gold!


WORST SNUB:  MICHAEL B. JOHNSON – I guess this movie was too small for a nom, or he just to unknown.  I don’t know what the reason is, but Vince from Friday Night Lights was spellbinding and deserved a nomination…just like my man Joaquin Phoenix!  Honorable mention…the late great James Gandolfini.  I missed Enough Said, but I have heard from multiple “experts” and my resident LA Film guru B Yok, that Tony Soprano was straight disrespected by not getting a supporting actor nomination.  Maybe we should send out Paulie Walnuts and Silvio to crack some skulls!!

Well that’s all for this year.  Enjoy your Oscar parties and remember…if you are in an Oscar pool, Sound Editing and Sound Mixing almost always go to the same movie.  Who do you think is going to win???  Enjoy the show!!




14 Mar

film reelSo all over the old internet machine, you can find websites and individuals listing cool, low budget  films that they think you should see.  Well, I thought I would add my own list to the pile.

Basically these are 10 films that I have seen, that you may or may not have heard of, and that are under the radar.  I guess you could call them indie films.  But whatever you call them, these are films that I think you must see!!  I’m not talking about films like Pulp Fiction, but films like Chris Nolan’s Following.  Don’t  just think low budget like Mean Streets, but think under the radar like the foreign film The Secrets in Their Eyes.  

Now, I do realize that there are a lot more small budget, life changing films out there in addition to my list of 10.  But these are 10 that I recommend (I have more than 10, but I think we might all get bored if I take the list to 100).   So, here in no particular order, are 10 (not a top 10, but just a list of 10) of my favorite under the radar, small budget, indie, whatever else you might call them films.  I’ve added a little bit on each of them, without getting too technical since I’m not really Siskel or Ebert.  Let me know what some of your favorites are…either from this list or your own additions..what’s better than discovering great, new films?!

swingersSWINGERS:  One of my favorites movies off all time.  I could quote this flick with my friends for hours…and as annoying as it is for other people, we usually do!  “You’re so money and you don’t even know it!”

y_tu_mama_tambien1Y TU MAMA TAMBIEN:  A great foreign film from Mexico, directed by Alfonso Cuaron.  Diego Luna and Gael Garcia Bernal take their crush to on a roadtrip to find a hidden beach.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             CITY OF GOD:  city of godA gritty, foreign film based on living in the slums of Rio.  In my opinion, one of the best films ever.  Great mix of beautiful visual look/style, guns, violence, love, drugs, and realism.

leon the professional

LEON:  THE PROFESSIONAL:  The great Jean Reno and a young Natalie Portman star in this film about a hitman the girl he protects.  Watch for a terribly underrated, but always amazing Gary Oldman.

oldboy-1OLDBOY:  A great film from Korea.  This one centers on a who is kidnapped for 15 years, and then released.  Don’t wan to give away too much, but there are some twisted plots and amazing shots.  Basically just a really cool movie…watch for the American remake to hit theaters in October…with Josh Brolin (not cool) and Spike Lee directing (wow!).

mementoMEMENTO:  One of the coolest movies out there…great story told in reverse…sort of.  Make sure you see this one, and pay attention!  You know it has to be good if Christopher Nolan directed it!

a single man


A SINGLE MAN:  Ok, so this one might not be that under the radar…but it could be.  This film stars the terrific Colin Firth and is directed by fashion designer Tom Ford.  It might be a bit slow, but its just a beautiful movie with great acting.

garden stateGARDEN STATE:  Basically if you are between the ages of 21-35 you have seen this movie…and loved it.  One of those movies, with Zach Braff and Natalie Portman, that you could watch over and over again…and with a crazy good indie soundtrack.  Watch it, and tell me how you could not love this movie!

lost_in_translation_2003_6LOST IN TRANSLATION:  Ok, so I sneaked in another one…everyone might have seen this, but I couldn’t resist.  Bill Murray and Scar Jo at their best.  Great soundtrack, great Sofia Coppola writing/directing, and set among a beautiful Japan landscape.  Plus, Anna Faris is hilarious!

a separation

A SEPARATION:  I can’t say enough about this foreign film from Iran.  It has some of the best writing and acting you will ever see…just amazing.  Watch it as soon as you can!



*Sorry, I just couldn’t resist adding a list of “just missed the cut”:  The Crow, Ruby Sparks, The Secret in Their Eyes, Beasts of the Southern Wild, The Descent, High Fidelity, Talk to Her (Hable con Ella), Winter’s Bone, Requiem for a Dream, Reservoir Dogs (obviously not under the radar).