MCN Originals Archive for May, 2014

Wilmington on Movies: A Million Ways to Die in the West

Hate to admit it, but I laughed fairly hard at parts of Seth MacFarlane’s A Million Ways to Die in The West, a sexed-up comedy Western with a foul-mouthed script and few inhibitions. Forgive me, John Ford. Forgive me, Howard Hawks. Forgive me, Sergio Leone. For that matter, forgive me, Mel Brooks.

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The DVD Wrapup

The People vs. Paul Crump, Claire Is Dead, Broken Side of Time, Run & Jump, Color of Lies, Cimarron Strip, Your Dragon and more.

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Weekend Box Office Analysis

A quick look at the numbers.

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Cannes 67 Wrap-Up

Cannes 67 – c’est fini.
After dozens of screenings, predictions, and an endless series of queue debates, we have a Palme d’Or.

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No Friday Estimates This Week

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On Jean-Luc Godard / ADIEU AU LANGAGE / GOODBYE TO LANGUAGE 3D

AH DIEUX // AH GOD(ARD)S

That is a pun

2014

Cannes Film Festival

But

Can film

Can film actually festival?

???

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Cannes Review: Clouds of Sils Maria

I kinda love Clouds of Sils Maria. At its best, it is a female version of My Dinner With Andre. At its weakest, it is still interesting. The premise is pretty basic.

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Cannes Competition Review: Leviathan

There’s never a scene where Kolya doesn’t have a myriad of issues weighing on his mind, and these are visible in Serebryakov’s pained, tired facial expressions and believable portrayal of alcoholism (to be sure, Leviathan is boozier than two or three Hong Sang-soo films combined).

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Cannes: The Daily Buzz – Hot Topics

Hot Topics Roundtable at Cannes Film Festival with Eric Kohn, Anne Thompson, Marian Masone, Alison Willmore, and Jordan Hoffman.

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The DVD Wrapup

Monuments Men, 3 Days to Kill, Like Someone in Love, Nosferatu, LA Law, Krackoon and more.

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Cannes Un Certain Regard Review: Lost River

If Lost River is the film Ryan Gosling wanted to debut as his first film—and you only get one first film—then I’ll be the first to admit that I had him pegged (as an artist, anyway) as someone entirely different.

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Cannes Review: The Salvation

Yeah, this film rocks.

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Cannes Competition Review: Maps To The Stars

Because Bruce Wagner’s script calls for actors to do and say depraved things with a straight face, the film couldn’t have been made—in this current form, anyway—without Cronenberg’s history of directing violence and dissecting the psycho-bizarre.

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No Weekend Report Today

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Friday Estimates

Godzilla does the monster smash with $38.4 million expected from almost 4,000 Friday roars. Neighbors shares another cup of mixed greens at $8.4 million, while your friendly neighborhood web-slinger settles for a kind-hearted $4.5 mil. Million Dollar Arm eggs on Hamm with $3.4 million of so-so-so pitching power.

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Cannes Competition Review: Wild Tales

Argentine Szifrón, known for his career in comedy television, aims high with his biggest budget to date: Wild Tales intertwines six separate narratives, and the film is primarily successful in finding humor in its theme of ordinary people pushed to their limit.

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Cannes Competition Review: The Captive

The blurring of truth and fiction is a fairly standard theme throughout the director’s filmography, and much of Egoyan’s career is recalled in The Captive.

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Cannes Review: Mr. Turner

Mike Leigh’s Mr. Turner is a movie about an artist who is past his moment of greatest glory. A biopic only in that it rests on a historic figure in art, this is not a film about Turner’s inspiration or his method or his history. It is about the other side of the mountain, the apex of which Turner reached before the first shot of this film.

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MCN Originals

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“The worst thing that we have in today’s movie culture is Rotten Tomatoes. It’s the destruction of our business. I have such respect and admiration for film criticism. When I was growing up film criticism was a real art. And there was intellect that went into that. And you would read Pauline’s Kael’s reviews, or some others, and that doesn’t exist anymore. Now it’s about a number. A compounded number of how many positives vs. negatives. Now it’s about, ‘What’s your Rotten Tomatoes score?’ And that’s sad, because the Rotten Tomatoes score was so low on Batman v Superman I think it put a cloud over a movie that was incredibly successful. People don’t realize what goes into making a movie like that. It’s mind-blowing. It’s just insane, it’s hurting the business, it’s getting people to not see a movie. In Middle America it’s, ‘Oh, it’s a low Rotten Tomatoes score so I’m not going to go see it because it must suck.’ But that number is an aggregate and one that nobody can figure out exactly what it means, and it’s not always correct. I’ve seen some great movies with really abysmal Rotten Tomatoes scores. What’s sad is film criticism has disappeared. It’s really sad.”
~ Brett Ratner Has A Sad

“The loss of a local newspaper critic is a real loss. People who know the local audience and know the local cultural scene are very important resources. You can’t just substitute the stuff that comes in from nowhere through syndication or the wire. I think at the same time, some of the newer outlets have really beefed up and improved their coverage and made room for criticism. The real problem is in the more specialized art forms — fine arts, classical music, dance and jazz, say. There is a real slowing of critical voices, partly because those art forms have smaller audiences. Newspapers and magazines can say that doesn’t get enough traffic, so we don’t have room for that. To me, that’s especially worrisome. This is the opposite of what newspapers are supposed to do, which is not to try to figure out what people are already interested in and recite that back to them, but to hopefully guide them to something that they should be interested in, connecting potential audiences with more interesting work.

“Then again, not everyone needs a critic. People have been going to movies for more than 100 years now, and probably the vast majority of those people have not read movie reviews or cared what critics thought. But there has always been an important subset that wants to know more, that wants to think about what they’ve seen and what they’re going to see, and wants someone to think along with. I think critics are important, not just as dispensers of consumer advice — though that’s certainly part of it, too — but as trusted voices and companions for people to argue with in your head when you’re going to movies or afterwards.”
~ A. O. Scott