MCN Commentary & Analysis

10 Things I Actually Know

October 18, 2020

29 Weeks To Oscar, Maybe: The Entire “Movie” Award Season

September 30, 2020

I was as generous as I could be. 38 movies seems to be the maximum that could be in contention for everything but Shorts, Animation, International, and Documentary. This includes 6 titles that are not currently scheduled to premiere this year, in theaters or out, or which have no announced their awards ambitions. Now… remove, […]

30 Weeks To Oscar, Maybe: Getting Out Of The Gate

September 23, 2020

And here we go… pretending that everything is normal as we take the small handful of movies that would be considered the lower tier of Oscar candidates, and even then, only a small part of that tier, and handing out Oscars like Sour Patch Kids (the here’s-a-sweet-for-your-oddball-screening candy of choice) because what the hell, we […]

Movie Content Scoreboard: Episode 3b – After The Fall, What Next?

September 17, 2020

Let’s look at the movie industry’s situation from another perspective. *The car renters of the film business are moviegoers.*The rental car companies of the film business are the production and distribution companies.*The renters and owners of the parking lots where the automobile waits for pick-ups-and returns is the exhibition business. You can’t force someone to […]

Movie Content Scoreboard: Episode 3a – After The Fall, The Films

September 16, 2020

Let’s start again with… THE UNTOUCHABLES (alphabetical order, as of July) A Quiet Place II Black Widow Coming 2 America The Conjuring 3 Connected The Croods 2 Dune The Eternals Free Guy The King’s Man The Last Duel Mulan No Time To Die Soul Tenet Top Gun Maverick West Side Story Wonder Woman 1984 Okay. […]

Movie Content Scoreboard: Episode 2 – Tenet & Mulan

September 16, 2020

I have avoided writing constantly about the immediate prospects of exhibition and studios because we didn’t get to the next significant event between the last Movie Content Scoreboard in July and the Tenet/Mulan experiments of the last couple weeks. I will deliver “Episode III – After The Fall” soon. But I wanted to keep the […]


September 8, 2020

The Academy under Dawn Hudson continues to be a slow-motion car wreck. It does one thing really well. It covers its ass. African Americans raged on Twitter about #OscarSoWhite. So The Academy responded by announcing its 2020 effort to bring more women and people of color into The Academy. Without getting into the problems of […]

Review: Mulan (spoiler-free)

September 3, 2020

The opening of Mulan, after a magic drone ride through the lush, green Chinese countryside with some wise male voice over about the story we are about to embark on, reminded me of Beauty & The Beast. The camera swoops into a Hakka walled village, establishing the town of personalities and, indeed, Mulan, who is […]

Review: The Comey Rule (spoiler-free)

September 2, 2020

Now and again, after a lot of digging – and we are doing more digging than ever – you find a simple, perfect gem. Such is The Comey Rule. We have been down this road before. And not without some real aesthetic value. There is an entire series of films by Oliver Stone, but the […]

Box Office – Unhinged, 8/23

August 23, 2020

I thought it would be worth doing a deeper dive into Unhinged‘s weekend “win” because the trades are being indulgent in their coverage and this is the start of a few weeks, at least, of the effort to reopen theatrical. The most generous reading of the Unhinged weekend is that the film did $2,195 per […]

The Year Of Festivaling Dangerously

August 3, 2020

With the release of the Toronto International schedule a couple weeks ago, the unveiling of the Telluride un-schedule today, Venice’s refusal to do any streaming for media or anyone else, and New York announcing that it will open with a TV series (not unlike TIFF opening with a movie The Academy apparently won’t qualify as […]

Movie Content Scoreboard, as of July 2020

July 23, 2020

I am beyond sick of reading about every minor move by any studio with any theatrical movie being hailed as a paradigm-changing event. It’s absurd. But I realized I haven’t broken down what there is and where it is likely to land. So here we go. I made a list of 107 studio releases (Disney […]

Why Write?

July 14, 2020

I started writing this two weeks ago. I was interrupted and never finished… for all the reasons I started writing it. I am not afraid to shoot off my mouth. I have strong opinions. And even if you disagree with my analysis, I have educated, researched opinions. But all the thoughts cascading through my mind […]

Review: Irresistible

June 24, 2020

I love Jon Stewart. He is earnest and smart and funny and on the same side of politics as me. But he’s not a very good director. Not everyone has that skill set. And it shows in the most basic ways. How he frames a single, a two-shot, a joke. How he likes his films […]

Whys & Hows

June 15, 2020

What’s playing at the Roxy? Nothing’s playing at the gawd-damned Roxy. A video stream sharing revenue with an indie exhib that can’t pay the rent  That he rationalizes because they can see the film all the way in Biloxi. That’s what’s f-ing playing at the Roxy. What’s in the frickin’ trades? I’ll tell you what’s […]

Review: The King of Staten Island

June 8, 2020

This movie should have been called, “The Non-Graduate.” That’s what it is… a 2020 take on another era’s Ben Braddock. There is no Mrs. Robinson, because the faux stability of the suburban household is long gone. The closest we get to that character is the ex of our hero’s mother’s romantic interest… who our hero […]

Reviews: Trilogy of Shame (AKA Jane Roe, On The Record, Filthy Rich)

May 29, 2020

The horror of 100,000 American dead (and counting) from the Novel Coronavirus and the grotesquerie of watching a man murdered before our eyes by a white policeman applying the pressure of body weight and a knee to the neck of an already under control black man will certainly bring us a wave of documentaries to […]

“If Your Fall Festival Wants To Live, Come With Me.”

May 25, 2020

It’s almost June 1. And frankly, the festivals (Venice/Telluride/Toronto… and New York) are running out of time. What are they going to be in only three months? We all have the same desire. For the festivals to go on, safely, with people sitting in theaters, watching movies. But circumstances are circumstances. The situation is not […]

Quibi Review: Dummy

May 14, 2020

I never thought it would happen to me. I wandered through Quibi’s programming selections the week it launched. A few minutes here, a few minutes there. A laugh or two. Pun titles all over, like Gayme Show and Dishmantled and Barkitecture. But nothing I felt compelled to stick with. After jumping on the app a […]