Dec 152013

Teaser trailers have gotten a little bit of a bad reputation, and rightly so. They’re often very short clips that say nothing about the film and signal the start of a relentless marketing campaign which results in audiences having seen a sizable chunk of a film before it even gets to cinemas.

The teaser for Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar, well… it has something to say. The voiceover from lead Matthew McConaughey waxes lyrically about the pursuit into space and the unknown and how we have all but given up on that dream. However, he adds, “…perhaps we’ve just forgotten that we’re still pioneers. That we’ve barely begun. And that our greatest accomplishments cannot be behind us”. Wow, now that’s a message. I’m not saying that there won’t be an overblown marketing campaign for this film, but I can say that the teaser trailer has done it’s job. I am teased. Sign me up for Interstellar.

Dec 132013

For those who read An Online Universe regularly, you all know how much music in film means to me. A brilliant score or soundtrack is enough to elevate a good film to great, and a great film to a whole new level of awesome. I wanted to share my 5 favourite original scores of the year. These are all films I saw for the first time at the cinema in 2013, although their release dates may be different in various countries. My top 10 original scores after the jump.

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Dec 132013

“You set a crook to catch a crook. We put the big honey pot out there and all the flies came to us”. This was said by Mel Weinberg in 1981. Christian Bale plays Irving Rosenfeld whom is entirely based on Mel, and the above statement is expanded and elaborated on as the plot of American Hustle. However, it’s the moment you see Irving taking more than five minutes to put a wig on that we realise very few crooks will be harmed in the telling of this story. My review after the jump.

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Dec 122013

The first of the guilds, the Screen Actors Guild have announced their nominees for their annual awards, which will be handed out on January 18, 2014. As expected, 12 Years A Slave features prominently with nominations for ensemble, lead actor (Chiwetel Ejiofor), supporting actor (Michael Fassbender) and supporting actress (Lupita Nyong’o). American Hustle picks up an ensemble nomination, along with a supporting actress nod for Jennifer Lawrence, who in my opinion, is about the only reason the film is worth seeing. Somewhat surprisingly Forest Whitaker has picked up a nomination for The Butler, which also received an ensemble nomination and a much-deserved nomination for supporting actress, Oprah Winfrey.

The best actress nominees for the Academy Awards almost seem a lock, with Dench, Streep, Bullock, Thompson and Blanchett all receiving nominations. I’m yet to see Saving My Banks so I can’t comment on Thompson, but I wouldn’t have Dench in my line up. She’s good (i mean, she always is), but it wasn’t a memorable performance. Brie Larson for Short Term 12 would be my dream surprise nominee. The McConaughssance continues with Matthew McConaughey receiving a lead actor nomination for Dallas Buyers Club, which also received a nod for ensemble and supporting actor for Jared Leto. Tom Hanks receives a nomination for Captain Phillips, but not for Saving Mr Banks. I have to admit to being surprised to see Daniel Brühl nominated for Rush. He was good, but I can’t say his performance has stuck with me. Ditto for Gandolfini in Enough Said.

The surprise omissions? Surely Robert Redford for All Is Lost, who has been touted as a potential Oscar winner by many. Michael B. Jordan and Octavia Spencer have both been talked about for Fruitvale Station, but neither gets a look in here. No acting nominations for any of the cast from HerWolf of Wall Street or Inside Llewyn Davis.

The SAGs are a good indicator of Academy Award nominees, as usually most nominated for SAGs are also nominated for Academy Awards. There’s always still a chance for surprises though.

The full list of nominees are after the jump.

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Dec 102013

Dom Hemingway

Recently we’ve been asked as audience members to endure some of the most vile characters imaginable, who have been our entry way into unpleasant stories. Dom Hemingway, the ugliest and loudest of the bunch is in fact the most proud of himself and also the nicest. Why? Because even he knows the people that surround him don’t have one tenth the soul and charm he possesses. In the case of Dom Hemingway, character and dialogue is paramount and narrative is his bitch. My review after the jump.

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