Movie Reviews: "Gangster Squad" and "Promised Land" 


Two movies to choose from this weekend, we have “Gangster Squad” and “Promised Land.” In “Gangster Squad,” Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, Nick Nolte, and Sean Penn star in the action drama about Mickey Cohen (Penn) and the LAPD cops determined to take him down.

In “Promised Land,” Matt Damon and John Krasinski star and co-wrote the screenplay about fracking with Damon and Frances McDormand as sales people for a gas company that wants to tap into the natural resources of a small town. Damon returns to the loving arms of his “Good Will Hunting” director, Gus Van Sant, for this film.

So which one is my pick of the week? Take a look:



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Best Editing of 2012! American Cinema Editors (ACE) Reveals Nominees 


The American Cinema Editors (ACE) has announced the nominees of the 63rd Annual ACE Eddie Awards honoring outstanding editing in nine categories of film, television, and documentaries. We'll find out the winners on Saturday, February 16th.

Here are the complete list of nominees; for winners/nominees of other award-giving bodies, click here:

BEST EDITED FEATURE FILM (DRAMATIC):

Argo
William Goldenberg, A.C.E.

Life of Pi
Tim Squyres, A.C.E.

Lincoln
Michael Kahn, A.C.E.

Skyfall
Stuart Baird, A.C.E.

Zero Dark Thirty
Dylan Tichenor, A.C.E. and William Goldenberg, A.C.E.

BEST EDITED FEATURE FILM (COMEDY OR MUSICAL):

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
Chris Gill

Les Misérables
Melanie Ann Oliver & Chris Dickens, A.C.E.

Moonrise Kingdom
Andrew Weisblum, A.C.E.

Silver Linings Playbook
Jay Cassidy, A.C.E. & Crispin Struthers

Ted
Jeff Freeman, A.C.E.

BEST EDITED ANIMATED FEATURE FILM:

Brave -- Nicolas C. Smith, A.C.E.

Frankenweenie -- Chris Lebenzon, A.C.E. & Mark Solomon

Rise of the Guardians -- Joyce Arrastia

Wreck-It Ralph -- Tim Mertens

BEST EDITED DOCUMENTARY (FEATURE):

Samsara
Ron Fricke & Mark Magidson

Searching for Sugar Man Malik Bendjelloul

West of Memphis
Billy McMillin

BEST EDITED DOCUMENTARY (TELEVISION):

American Masters - Phil Ochs: There But For Fortune
Pamela Scott Arnold

The Dust Bowl - Episode 1: The Great Plow Up -- Craig Mellish

The Weight of the Nation: Episode 1: Consequences
Paula Heredia

BEST EDITED HALF-HOUR SERIES FOR TELEVISION:

Girls: “Pilot”
Robert Frazen, A.C.E. & Catherine Haight

Modern Family: “Mystery Date”
Ryan Case

Nurse Jackie: “Handle Your Scandal”
Gary Levy

BEST EDITED ONE-HOUR SERIES FOR COMMERCIAL TELEVISION:

Breaking Bad: “Dead Freight”
Skip Macdonald A.C.E.

Breaking Bad: “Gliding Over All”
Kelley Dixon, A.C.E.

Mad Men: “The Other Woman”
Tom Wilson

Nashville: “Pilot”
Keith Henderson

Smash: “Pilot”
Andrew Weisblum, A.C.E.

BEST EDITED ONE-HOUR SERIES FOR NON-COMMERCIAL TELEVISION:

Homeland: “The Choice”
Terry Kelley, A.C.E.

Homeland: “State of Independence”
Jordan Goldman

The Newsroom: “We Just Decided To (Pilot)”
Anne McCabe, A.C.E.

BEST EDITED MINISERIES OR MOTION PICTURE FOR TELEVISION:

Game Change
Lucia Zucchetti, A.C.E.

Hatfields & McCoys, Part 1
Don Cassidy

Hemingway & Gellhorn
Walter Murch, A.C.E.

BEST EDITED NON-SCRIPTED SERIES:

Beyond Scared Straight : " Oklahoma County, OK - The Weight"
Rob Goubeaux, A.C.E., Mark S. Andrew, A.C.E., Paul J. Coyne, A.C.E., Mark Baum, Jeremy Gantz, Johnny Skaare, J.C. Solis & Ken Yankee

Frozen Planet: “Ends of the Earth”
Andy Netley & Sharon Gillooly

Deadliest Catch: “I Don't Want to Die”
Josh Earl, A.C.E. & Alex Durham

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Take That Academy! "Argo" Tops Critics' Choice Movie Awards! Oscar-snubbed Ben Affleck Wins Best Director 


"Argo" F...yourself! Ben Affleck's "Argo" was the big winner at the 18th Annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards. The film won Best Picture with Affleck, infamously snubbed by the Academy, took home the Best Director award. I say...YAY!

Voted by the Broadcast Film Critics Association, of which I'm a proud member, the Critics' Choice Movie Awards have been regarded as a better Oscar predictor than the Golden Globes. Heck, we even give talented directors their well-deserved praise! HA!

Affleck received the loudest standing ovation after winning the Best Director award for "Argo." Also receiving standing ovation was Daniel Day-Lewis for his Best Actor win for "Lincoln." Jessica Chastain won Best Actress for "Zero Dark Thirty," while Philip Seymour Hoffman took home the Best Supporting Actor trophy for "The Master" and Anne Hathaway (another hurray!) received the Best Supporting Actress Award for "Les Miserables."

"Lincoln," which received a record-breaking 13 nominations, ended up with 3 including Day-Lewis, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Original Score.

The ceremony took place at Barker Hanager in Santa Monica and aired live on the CW. Oh, fans also got their chance to vote for Best Film Franchise. And the winner was...."Twilight" because apparently, it's better than "The Lord of the Rings," "Harry Potter," and "Star Wars."

Here's the complete list of winners of the 18th Annual Critics' Choice Movie Awards; for winners/nominees of other award-giving bodies, click here:

BEST PICTURE
*** "Argo"
"Beasts of the Southern Wild"
"Django Unchained"
"Les Misérables"
"Life of Pi"
"Lincoln"
"The Master"
"Moonrise Kingdom"
"Silver Linings Playbook"
"Zero Dark Thirty"

ACTOR
Bradley Cooper – “Silver Linings Playbook”
*** Daniel Day-Lewis – “Lincoln”
John Hawkes – “The Sessions”
Hugh Jackman – “Les Misérables”
Joaquin Phoenix – “The Master”
Denzel Washington – “Flight”

ACTRESS
*** Jessica Chastain – “Zero Dark Thirty”
Marion Cotillard – “Rust and Bone”
Jennifer Lawrence – “Silver Linings Playbook”
Emmanuelle Riva – “Amour”
Quvenzhané Wallis – “Beasts of the Southern Wild”
Naomi Watts – “The Impossible”

SUPPORTING ACTOR
Alan Arkin – “Argo”
Javier Bardem – “Skyfall”
Robert De Niro – “Silver Linings Playbook”
*** Philip Seymour Hoffman – “The Master”
Tommy Lee Jones – “Lincoln”
Matthew McConaughey – “Magic Mike”

SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Amy Adams – “The Master”
Judi Dench – “Skyfall”
Ann Dowd – “Compliance”
Sally Field – “Lincoln”
*** Anne Hathaway – “Les Misérables”
Helen Hunt – “The Sessions”

YOUNG ACTOR/ACTRESS
Elle Fanning – “Ginger & Rosa”
Kara Hayward – “Moonrise Kingdom”
Tom Holland – “The Impossible”
Logan Lerman – “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”
Suraj Sharma – “Life of Pi”
*** Quvenzhané Wallis – “Beasts of the Southern Wild”

ACTING ENSEMBLE
"Argo"
"The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel"
"Les Misérables"
"Lincoln"
"Moonrise Kingdom"
*** "Silver Linings Playbook"

DIRECTOR
*** Ben Affleck – “Argo”
Kathryn Bigelow – “Zero Dark Thirty”
Tom Hooper – “Les Misérables”
Ang Lee – “Life of Pi”
David O. Russell – “Silver Linings Playbook”
Steven Spielberg – “Lincoln”

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
*** Quentin Tarantino – “Django Unchained”
John Gatins – “Flight”
Rian Johnson – “Looper”
Paul Thomas Anderson – “The Master”
Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola – “Moonrise Kingdom”
Mark Boal – “Zero Dark Thirty”

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Chris Terrio – “Argo”
David Magee – “Life of Pi”
*** Tony Kushner – “Lincoln”
Stephen Chbosky – “The Perks of Being a Wallflower”
David O. Russell – “Silver Linings Playbook”

CINEMATOGRAPHY
“Les Misérables” – Danny Cohen
*** “Life of Pi” – Claudio Miranda
“Lincoln” – Janusz Kaminski
“The Master” – Mihai Malaimare Jr.
“Skyfall” – Roger Deakins

ART DIRECTION
*** “Anna Karenina” – Sarah Greenwood/Production Designer; Katie Spencer/Set Decorator
“The Hobbit” – Dan Hennah/Production Designer; Ra Vincent & Simon Bright/Set Decorators
“Les Misérables” – Eve Stewart/Production Designer; Anna Lynch-Robinson/Set Decorator
“Life of Pi” – David Gropman/Production Designer; Anna Pinnock/Set Decorator
“Lincoln” – Rick Carter/Production Designer; Jim Erickson/Set Decorator

EDITING
“Argo” – William Goldenberg
“Les Misérables” – Melanie Ann Oliver and Chris Dickens
“Life of Pi” – Tim Squyres
“Lincoln” – Michael Kahn
*** “Zero Dark Thirty” – William Goldenberg and Dylan Tichenor

COSTUME DESIGN
*** “Anna Karenina” – Jacqueline Durran
“Cloud Atlas” – Kym Barrett and Pierre-Yves Gayraud
“The Hobbit” – Bob Buck, Ann Maskrey and Richard Taylor
“Les Misérables” – Paco Delgado
“Lincoln” – Joanna Johnston

MAKEUP
*** Cloud Atlas
The Hobbit
Les Misérables
Lincoln

VISUAL EFFECTS
The Avengers
Cloud Atlas
The Dark Knight Rises
The Hobbit
*** Life of Pi

ANIMATED FEATURE
Brave
Frankenweenie
Madagascar 3
ParaNorman
Rise of the Guardians
*** Wreck-It Ralph

ACTION MOVIE
The Avengers
The Dark Knight Rises
Looper
*** Skyfall

ACTOR IN AN ACTION MOVIE
Christian Bale – “The Dark Knight Rises”
*** Daniel Craig – “Skyfall”
Robert Downey Jr. – “The Avengers”
Joseph Gordon-Levitt – “Looper”
Jake Gyllenhaal – “End of Watch”

ACTRESS IN AN ACTION MOVIE
Emily Blunt – “Looper”
Gina Carano – “Haywire”
Judi Dench – “Skyfall”
Anne Hathaway – “The Dark Knight Rises”
*** Jennifer Lawrence – “The Hunger Games”

COMEDY
Bernie
*** Silver Linings Playbook
Ted
This Is 40
21 Jump Street

ACTOR IN A COMEDY
Jack Black – “Bernie”
*** Bradley Cooper – “Silver Linings Playbook”
Paul Rudd – “This Is 40”
Channing Tatum – “21 Jump Street”
Mark Wahlberg – “Ted”

ACTRESS IN A COMEDY
Mila Kunis – “Ted”
*** Jennifer Lawrence – “Silver Linings Playbook”
Shirley MacLaine – “Bernie”
Leslie Mann – “This Is 40”
Rebel Wilson – “Pitch Perfect”

SCI-FI/HORROR MOVIE
The Cabin in the Woods
*** Looper
Prometheus

FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
*** Amour
The Intouchables
A Royal Affair
Rust and Bone

DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
Bully
The Central Park Five
The Imposter
The Queen of Versailles
*** Searching for Sugar Man
West of Memphis

SONG
“For You” – performed by Keith Urban/written by Monty Powell & Keith Urban – Act of Valor
“Learn Me Right” – performed by Birdy with Mumford & Sons/written by Mumford & Sons – Brave
*** “Skyfall” – performed by Adele/written by Adele Adkins & Paul Epworth – Skyfall
“Still Alive” – performed by Paul Williams/written by Paul Williams – Paul Williams Still Alive
“Suddenly” – performed by Hugh Jackman/written by Claude-Michel Schonberg & Alain Boublil & Herbert Kretzmer – Les Misérables

SCORE
“Argo” – Alexandre Desplat
“Life of Pi” – Mychael Danna
*** “Lincoln” – John Williams
“The Master” – Jonny Greenwood
“Moonrise Kingdom” – Alexandre Desplat

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Denzel Washington, "Flight" Screenwriter Talk About Their Oscar Nominations 


Robert Zemeckis' "Flight" received a total of 2 Oscar nominations including Denzel Washington for "Flight" and Best Original Screenplay for John Gatins. Here's what the nominees say about their nods (to see complete 2013 Oscar nominations, click here)

Denzel Washington - FLIGHT

“ ‘Flight’ was one of the most challenging roles I’ve ever had in my career, and it was an honor to be directed by Robert Zemeckis. It’s always nice to be asked back to the show, and it will be fun to share the evening with our nominated screenwriter John Gatins."

John Gatins - FLIGHT

I’m truly humbled. This nomination represents the 12 years I spent writing the script married with the most amazing performance by Denzel Washington, and capped by the genius vision of Robert Zemeckis. Words cannot explain the honor I feel to have my name on the same poster as Bob, Denzel, John Goodman, Don Cheadle, Bruce Greenwood, Melisa Leo, James Badge Dale and Kelly Reilly.

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"Paranorman," "Anna Karenina," "Moonrise Kingdom" Release Oscar Statements About Nominations 


Focus Features received a total of six Oscar nominations revealed this morning. The studio's "Moonrise Kingdom" received a nod for Best Original Screenplay for Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola. "Anna Karenina" received 4 nods including Production Design, Cinematography, Costume Design, and Original Score. Meanwhile, "Paranorman" was nominated for Best Animated Feature of the Year. And guess what? I agree with that!

Here are the statements from the nominees (to see full 2013 Oscar nominations list, click here):

MOONRISE KINGDOM

Best Original Screenplay
Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola
“I was in the car with my family when we heard the news – everyone was so excited! It’s a wonderful honor to be nominated among many great films and storytellers – Wes and I are thrilled.”
-Roman Coppola, nominee for Best Original Screenplay (MOONRISE KINGDOM)

PARANORMAN

Best Animated Feature Film
Sam Fell and Chris Butler
“We are overjoyed that our movie has been Oscar-nominated! We made it with the unending support of brilliant producers and an amazing crew at LAIKA, a unique and cutting-edge studio. On behalf of all of them, we are so proud that the enduring craft of stop-motion has been acknowledged by the Academy -- and that the individuality of Norman himself is being celebrated.”
-- Sam Fell and Chris Butler, directors of the Best Animated Feature nominee ParaNorman
PARANORMAN
Best Animated Feature Film
"My heartfelt thanks to the Academy for honoring LAIKA and ParaNorman with this nomination. Working with our directors Chris Butler and Sam Fell and my fellow producer Arianne Sutner to bring ParaNorman to audiences worldwide has been the most rewarding experience of my professional life. We’re indebted to Focus Features and Universal Pictures for their advocacy and resolve, to our exceptional cast members for their keenly felt performances, and above all to our unparalleled, extraordinarily talented crew for handcrafting a moving and beautiful work of art."
-Travis Knight, President and CEO of LAIKA

ANNA KARENINA
Achievement in production design
Sarah Greenwood; Set Decoration: Katie Spencer
“Realizing our director Joe Wright’s bold and unique vision for ANNA KARENINA was a challenge, and ultimately a thrill. To have our work recognized by the AMPAS members is an honor, and a joy. We are proud to accept this nomination on behalf of what was a tremendous crew.”
-Sarah Greenwood (production designer) and Katie Spencer (set decorator), nominees for Best Production Design (ANNA KARENINA)

Achievement in music written for motion pictures (Original score)
Dario Marianelli
"I am delighted to be nominated, and humbled by being in the company of composers whose work I have admired for so long. For the fourth time, director Joe Wright has inspired me and made sure that I would not miss any of the opportunities that his movie opened up for the music. I feel very grateful towards him."
- Dario Marianelli, nominee for Best Original Score (ANNA KARENINA)

Achievement in cinematography
Seamus McGarvey
“The director of the film I’m currently working on just texted me. We had a $100 bet that I wouldn’t get nominated, but he texted me that he’s $100 richer! I’m over the moon!”
-Seamus McGarvey, nominee for Best Cinematography (ANNA KARENINA)

Achievement in costume design
Jacqueline Durran
“I’m very excited! I’m also very pleased that other members of the ANNA KARENINA gang were nominated since this film was a collaboration.”
-Jacqueline Durran, , nominee for Best Costume Design (ANNA KARENINA)

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