October 23, 2016
        Hollywood Contenders: New Oscar Predictions for October                Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, Naomie Harris, Lily Collins get Honors at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                "Manchester by the Sea" leads the Gotham Award nominations                Tom Ford, Marc Platt and Kenneth Lonergan to be Honored at 20th Annual Hollywood Film Awards                Tom Cruise is in his action hero comfort zone with "Jack Reacher: Never Go Back"                "Moonlight" could be A24's big Oscar horse this year                Ewan McGregor steps behind the camera with "American Pastoral"                Hollywood Contenders: A second crack at Golden Globe predictions for 2016                "The Accountant" seeks to help give Ben Affleck another blockbuster                85 countries will be competing for Best Foreign Language Feature nominations at the Oscars                Tom Hanks to receive Hollywood Actor Award for "Sully" @ Hollywood Film Awards                "Certain Women" showcases Laura Dern, Kristen Stewart, and Michelle Williams                Ben Affleck is perhaps Hollywood's biggest and most diverse superstar                "The Birth of a Nation" looks to survive controversy and contend for awards                "The Girl on the Train" hopes to transport Emily Blunt to the Oscar race        

Super Bowl movie ads we liked the most

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: That one team beat the other team last night in Super Bowl XLV. But at HollywoodNews.com, we tune in to the Big Game for the TV spots, most notably, the ads for upcoming movies.

“Transformers,” “Captain America,” “Pirates of the Caribbean,” “Fast Five” and “Thor” were just a few of the pending blockbusters that teased footage during last night’s Super Bowl.

Here are the five movie commercials we liked best, in order. What were your favorites?

1. “Super 8”
“E.T.” meets “Close Encounters” meets “Cloverfield” in this team-up from producer Steven Spielberg and director J.J. Abrams. The lack of solar flares was disappointing, but everything else about this teaser rocked.

2. “Transformers: Dark of the Moon”
I’m not even a big fan of Michal Bay’s “Tramsformers” series, but the sheer size of the devastation promised by this Super Bowl spot has me looking forward to July 1. On a related action note, the “Fast Five” commercial was intense, but those movies tend to lose something in the transition from 30-second TV spot to 90-minute feature film, so we’ll wait and see.

3. “Priest”
“Priest” looks like “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” with balls. The use of Depeche Mode’s “Personal Jesus” was the perfect icing on this bloodsucking cake.

4. “Cowboys & Aliens”
Still not 100% sure how Jon Favreau will marry his two worlds – Westerns and Sci-Fi thrillers – but this new spot gave us a better look at the aliens of the title, and a glimpse of a naked Olivia Wilde. Nicely done.

5. “Captain America: The First Avenger”
Moves a little too quickly, without giving us good looks at Chris Evans’ Cap or the villainous Red Skull. Lives up to the nickname “teaser” while giving us a hint at what’s up Marvel’s sleeve.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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