August 24, 2016

Tag Archives: matt damon

“Jason Bourne” brings back Matt Damon to the franchise

Almost every A-list actor seems to have a franchise these days. In the case of Matt Damon, his is the Bourne series, of which he’s starred in three of the four outings (only missing The Bourne Legacy). On Friday, Bourne is back in Jason Bourne, with Damon back as well, alongside filmmaker Paul Greengrass. After a successful trilogy for Damon in The Bourne Identity, The Bourne Supremacy, and The Bourne Ultimatum, he and Greengrass, who helmed Supremacy and Ultimatum, left for other interests. They’re in the fold again though, making this a summer action blockbuster that’s been hotly anticipated. Saw the film earlier this week and while I wasn’t blown away, I suspect fans of the franchise will be satisfied. Jason Bourne is made for them, after all.
The movie is a continuation of the franchise, with Jason Bourne (Damon) living off the grid and mostly unconcerned with the world of espionage. He’s still haunted by his actions, but is trying to move on. When an old ally returns to the fold with information about his past, along with a revelation about his father, Bourne is active once again. This attracts the attention of the director of the CIA (Tommy Lee Jones), as well as a tech analyst (Alicia Vikander) who sees an opportunity in bringing him in. From there, it’s action, spy work, and Bourne doing what he does best. Green grass directs and co-writes with Christopher Rouse (also the editor), while the rest of the cast includes Riz Ahmed, Bill Camp, Vincent Cassel, Ato Essandoh, Gregg Henry, Vinzenz Kiefer, Scott Shepherd, Julia Stiles, and more. Barry Ackroyd once again provides the cinematography, while the score comes by way of the duo of David Buckley and John Powell. Obviously, this is a showcase for Damon, who wears the character like an old glove by now.
Personally, this one didn’t really hit for me like the others have. That’s not to say that this is a bad movie, just a flawed one, with a strange lack of passion behind it. I’d never accuse anyone of doing something just for the money, but in a lot of ways this appears like a paycheck job for Damon, Greengrass, and the like (Jones and Vikander especially are given very little to do). That may not be the case, but that’s just how it comes off, with the feel of a product, as opposed to an […]

Golden Globe results: Surprises and Upsets everywhere as ‘The Martian’ and ‘The Revenant’ emerge victorious

Wow. Just…wow. As much as I try to prepare myself for the unexpected, last night’s 73rd Golden Globe Awards was still something else. My predictions, along with everyone else in the industry, were way off, as curveball after curveball came our way. It turned out to be a very good night for The Revenant, with The Martian also having a strong showing. As good as it was for those two, it was a poor night for both The Big Short and Spotlight, as shut outs were pitched. Hell, even Steve Jobs managed to come back from the dead and take home a pair of prizes. It was impossible to see all of this coming, though a few things were potential upsets heading into the night. Still…wow.
Where to start? Well, at the beginning, I guess. Nothing turned out as we expected it to, leading the night to be anything but routine. The Globes gave a big boost to Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s film The Revenant, as it led the way with three wins, emerging victorious in Best Motion Picture (Drama), Best Actor in a Motion Picture (Drama) for Leonardo DiCaprio, and Best Director for Iñárritu himself. The Martian and Steve Jobs were the only other two movies to win multiple awards, as the former took Best Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical) and Best Actor in a Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical) for Matt Damon, while the latter took Best Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture for Kate Winslet and Best Screenplay for Aaron Sorkin. Other big wins went to Brie Larson for Room with the Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Drama) category, Jennifer Lawrence for Joy with the Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Comedy or Musical) category, and Sylvester Stallone for Creed in Best Supporting Actor. Most of those were surprises too, to one degree or another. We even got an upset in Best Original Song, as “Writing’s on the Wall” from Spectre won. The only non surprises, outside of DiCaprio and Larson, were Inside Out winning Best Animated Feature Film, Son of Saul winning Best Motion Picture (Foreign Language), and Ennio Morricone for The Hateful Eight taking Best Original Score.
Below you’ll see all of the aforementioned wins in the film categories (even though that really does cover it), along with the television categories, which was highlighted for me by Oscar Isaac winning an award for his performance in […]

Hollywood Contenders: Potential nomination morning snubs

As much as we tend to focus on who and what might get in on Oscar nomination morning, there’s also another factor to consider…who and what might wind up missing. Yes, for all but the most locked in of contenders, there’s the chance that a snub might be coming their way on the big day. Every single year, there’s always at least one, be it Ben Affleck in Best Director for Argo, John Hawkes in Best Actor for The Sessions, or The Lego Movie in Best Animated Feature, you can all but bank on something surprising, if not outright shocking, happening. Below you’ll see my best attempt at guessing what the shock might be this time around…
Here now is five (or technically six, as you’ll see below) instance of potentially surprising snubs that could happen on nomination morning:

Matt Damon in Best Actor – For a moment it seemed like Damon was potentially going to emerge as the frontrunner in Actor for The Martian, but despite a strong shot at the Golden Globe win, he’s still in line to possibly be one of the casualties on the big morning. I don’t think it’s especially likely, but it’s something to certainly consider. We’re still not sure just how big a contender the film is…

Roger Deakins in Best Cinematography – This would be a cruel crime, but with Sicario assured of nothing right now, it’s hard to consider Deakins a full on lock. I don’t think this is likely at all, but it’s a possibility, if nothing else. It pains me to even think about it, but think I must. Is this probably going to happen? No. Is it worth worrying about still? Sure.

Rooney Mara and/or Alicia Vikander miss in both Best Actress as well as Best Supporting Actress – This is the one to pay attention to, frankly. Right now, I think Mara and Vikander are the frontrunners in Supporting Actress (for Carol and The Danish Girl, respectively), but both are also up in Actress here and there. Category confusion could abound, with one or both winding up missing out all together. Mara has Cate Blanchett in Actress to split other votes, while Vikander also has her performance in Ex Machina to complicate Supporting Actress. I still have them both getting in, but they have the possibility of missing certainly on the table.

George Miller in Best Director – I never fully believed […]

Updated Golden Globe predictions

Believe it or not, the Golden Globe awards are coming, sooner than you think. Yes, it seems like just yesterday the nominations were announced, but now the actually ceremony is only a few weeks away (less than three weeks now, in fact). As such, it’s definitely time to update my predictions, reflecting for the first time the actual nominees. I’m not sure anything is obvious just yet with the Globes, though some potential frontrunners have definitely emerged. With the early date for the ceremony, we’ll possibly get to see new frontrunners put forward, or else the strongest contenders will just get stronger. Either way, it’ll most certainly contribute something to the awards season.
It seems like it’ll be Spotlight and The Martian emerging with big wins, though Mad Max: Fury Road and The Big Short could prove to be party poopers. My hunch is that both wind up with the Best Picture prizes here, with either Spotlight’s Tom McCarthy or The Martian’s Ridley Scott taking Best Director, though George Miller is a possible spoiler for Mad Max: Fury Road. Acting wise, things are less set in stone, though the Actor prizes potentially seem wrapped up for Leonardo DiCaprio in The Revenant and Matt Damon in The Martian. That being said, the former has competition from Bryan Cranston in Trumbo and the latter has from Steve Carell in The Big Short. Actress wise, I think Brie Larson in Room and Jennifer Lawrence in Joy seem like the safe bets, though neither is locked in. The same goes for Supporting Actor with Mark Rylance in Bridge of Spies and Supporting Actress with Jennifer Jason Leigh in The Hateful Eight, now that I mention it. Essentially, nothing is a sure thing right now, and that’s exciting!
Obviously, the Academy Awards correlation is fairly limited here since it’s a completely different group of voters. Also, ballots are due a few days before the Globes have their show, with the Oscar nominations being announced a couple of days later, so if anything, this functions more as a potential barometer for the ultimate winners, not the nominees. Speeches can be tried out and victories are tried on for size by members of the Academy. It’s not nearly as important as the guilds are to the process, but it’s not quite as easy to dismiss as something like the Critics Choice Awards, so there’s that.
Here now is my first […]

National Board of Review honors “Mad Max: Fury Road”, “The Martian”, and more

Just moments ago, the National Board of Review announced their 2015 awards. In a bit of surprise, Mad Max: Fury Road took their Best Film prize, while Matt Damon and Ridley Scott gave The Martian the best showing overall, taking Best Actor and Best Director, respectively. NBR’s winners are always noteworthy as a major precursor, and this is obviously no exception. We’re seeing the first group of winners help to potentially sway Academy members, so this is an important moment here on the very first day of December. Oscar takes notice of this precursor to some degree, that much is certain. It’s just a question of how much…

Obviously, some now will wonder if Mad Max: Fury Road can be a Best Picture nominee at the Oscars. Considering that it was its only prize, this isn’t somehow suddenly a lock. Does it help? Sure. Is it a done deal? Of course not. Even just last year, A Most Violent Year took this top prize and wound up getting shut out. George Miller’s epic won’t be shut out, likely scoring in a few technical categories, but it still seems like a long shot for Picture. A nomination could be in the cards if it continues to show up on the precursor scene, but nothing is certain. You can’t deny that this is a boost though for the flick. It can certainly build on this win and try to get more seriously into the race. We’ll have to hold steady there in that regard though and see what happens. The guilds will probably make or break it, if I had to guess.
The best day overall though was had by The Martian. Taking three prizes (plus showing up on the Top Ten list) gives this a huge boost. Some folks, like me, have floated Ridley Scott as a potential Best Director winner, and this victory here will help that cause out a great deal. Matt Damon in Best Actor is a surprise, and while I doubt this will fuel him for a win, a nomination is getting more and more likely, with the same being said for Drew Goddard, who won here for Best Adapted Screenplay. A huge boost goes to Sylvester Stallone for Creed as well, as he could wind up the frontrunner before all is said and done. Jennifer Jason Leigh took Best Supporting Actress for The Hateful Eight, while Quentin Tarantino […]

A second crack at Golden Globe predictions

Here in the heart of the month of November, I think it’s high time to take my second crack at some Golden Globe predictions. As previously mentioned last month, I’ll be mixing these in with Oscar predictions somewhat consistently going forward, but early Globe picks are always really interesting to me, especially since sometimes you’re still guessing category placement (which is slowly being reported in the trades this week) and just what the tastes of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association will look like at the current time. They’re almost impossible to accurately guess off the bat the first couple of times around, but that little factoid has yet to stop me from trying all the same. Here goes nothing once again!
What you’ll notice below this time around with the predictions is that we have some noticeable changes as well as some films/contenders that are settling in for a long awards run. Category swaps have come and affected Joy, Love & Mercy, and Trumbo, for example (not to mention confirmation of where The Martian is competing), but we still have the major players in Spotlight and such to look at. My hunch right now is that Spotlight is still able to do very well with the HFPA in advance of Oscar, with The Martian not far behind. This would set up the narrative that the two of those are going head to head for the big Academy Award statues. That can certainly change, especially if one of The Hateful Eight, Joy, or The Revenant really blows voters away, but there’s no reason not back that pair right now. As a bonus, I’m including a seventh potential slot in predictions for now, just to open the race up a bit. I may or may not keep it going forward (if so, it’ll likely only be as we get closer to nominations, not initially), but it’s there at the current moment, as you’ll see below…
Here you go ladies and gentlemen, my latest look at how the Golden Globe awards could shape up:
Best Picture (Drama)
1. Spotlight
2. The Revenant
3. Brooklyn
4. The Hateful Eight
5. Room
If there’s a sixth: The Danish Girl
If there’s a seventh: Bridge of Spies
Best Picture (Comedy or Musical)
1. The Martian
2. Joy
3. The Big Short
4. Trainwreck
5. Grandma
If there’s a sixth: Our Brand is Crisis
If there’s a seventh: Spy
Best Actor (Drama)
1. Leonardo DiCaprio – The Revenant
2. Michael Fassbender – Steve Jobs
3. Eddie Redmayne – The […]

Which categories will be the most competitive this year?

Of the many things that you can consider when thinking about the Oscar race, one that I like to ponder from time to time is which categories will be the most competitive. I hinted at this in another piece this week, but certain categories are shaping up to be stronger than other ones. That being said, instead of looking at strengths and weaknesses, I figured today I’d see which ones seem like they’ll be the most competitive. That opens things up to more combine quality and quantity, as it were. This is a wide open year in general, so it’s only fitting that so many categories seem to be that way as well…
Below are the half dozen most competitive categories, as it stands right now:
6. Best Actress – After a bit of a drought, we have a group of Actress contenders that we can be quite proud of. Of course, who will win is wide open, but it’s not a situation where there’s only six or seven legitimate contenders for a nod. Vying for a nom here are the likes of Cate Blanchett, Emily Blunt, Blythe Danner, Brie Larson, Jennifer Lawrence, Carey Mulligan, Charlotte Rampling, Saorise Ronan, Maggie Smith, Lily Tomlin, and more. That’s ten right there. Nothing to sneeze at, right? It’s a tight race, and one that’s certainly among the most competitive that the Academy will have to offer us this year.
5. Best Visual Effects – Here’s a category that will really be an embarrassment of riches. Basically, there’s a bunch of different styles on display that voters will have to choose from. Contenders like Ant-Man, Avengers: Age of Ultron, In the Heart of the Sea, Jurassic World, Mad Max: Fury Road The Martian, The Revenant, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Walk, and more will be up for a nomination. Usually, this category has one or two frontrunners and then some also rans, but that’s not the case this year. I can see it going any number of different ways, and that’s a delight.
4. Best Supporting Actor – As jam packed as any category this year, Supporting Actor could be a photo finish. Among the large number of contenders, there are the likes of Paul Dano, Benicio del Toro, Bruce Dern, Joel Edgerton, Idris Elba, Sam Elliot, Ryan Gosling, Tom Hardy, Michael Keaton, Harvey Keitel, Seth Rogen, Mark Ruffalo, Kurt Russell, Mark Rylance, and Jason Segel. That’s […]

Hollywood Contenders – Could “The Martian” be an actual threat to win Best Picture?

If you took a gander at my predictions at the end of last week, you might have noticed that the race for Best Picture (as well as Best Director) might very well be coming down to Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight or Ridley Scott’s The Martian. Right now, Spotlight is very much the frontrunner, but The Martian has been exceeding expectations all season long, so is it time to really consider if Scott’s film can go all the way? In my eyes, yes…even if it likely has a better chance to pull an upset in Director than in Picture. This movie is in it to win it, regardless.
Almost $200 million at the domestic box office later, I have to imagine that most of you have seen the flick already, but just in case, here’s my summary again. The Martian centers astronaut Mark Watney (Matt Damon), who sees the ultimate worst case scenario comes true for him on a mission to Mars when his crew (led by Jessica Chastain) thinks he’s been killed while on the surface and takes off for Earth without him. Still alive, but injured and only with supplies for a short period of time, Mark has to use his science skills as a botanist to figure out how to survive for literally years until something can be figured out. Back home, NASA goes from assuming he’s been lost to wondering what can be done for him, and his friends and former crew-mate formulate plans of their own. Scott directs, obviously, while Drew Goddard penned the adaptation of Andy Weir’s novel. In addition to Damon in the lead role and Chastain in one of the main supporting ones, the star studded cast includes Sean Bean, Jeff Daniels, Mackenzie Davis, Chiwetel Ejifor, Donald Glover, Kate Mara, Michael Pena, Sebastian Stan, and Kristen Wiig. The cinematography is by Dariusz Wolski while Harry Gregson-Williams handles the score here.

I’ve evolved a bit on this one’s potential, even though I loved the book a few years ago and was looking forward to the film adaptation as much as anything else this year. Initially, I thought it had a chance to get nominated, but was one of the few to think so. Then, I briefly went out on a limb and predicted wins in Picture and in Director for Scott, before coming back down to Earth (no pun intended) and having it solidly in the lineup. […]

Hollywood Contenders – “Steve Jobs”: Oscar predictions for November

Maybe I was just distracted by watching the New York Mets in the playoffs this fall, but I think the time is flying folks. It’s already November, which is getting to be late in the game. A couple of precursors have already announced their nominees, we only really have four unseen major contenders left (The Big Short, The Hateful Eight, Joy, and The Revenant), and some presumed frontrunners in a couple of categories have emerged. At the same time though, we’re almost done with the year and no category is locked up yet (yes, not even Best Animated Feature…the closest one would be Best Foreign Language Feature). Simply put, it’s an exciting time and a perfect moment to update my Academy Award predictions yet again.
The big thing people have been debating (besides if The Martian can actually win in the big categories, but I’ll be tackling that in an article early next week) is how much Steve Jobs is hurt by the lack of a strong box office. Some think it’s barely been affected, some think it’s dead in the water. Me? I think the truth is somewhere in between. I’m of the opinion that wins might be a struggle now without the public interest that was expected, and even a few down the line nominations might be tougher to get, but the majority of its campaign should remain the same. Voters don’t consider box office like analysts do, so this is more perception than actual reality. Steve Jobs was hurt by bombing financially, but it’s still very much in the race. It’s certainly something to keep in mind though, moving forward…
Here now is how I see the Oscar nominations, as of the beginning of November:
BEST PICTURE
1. Spotlight
2. The Martian
3. Room
4. The Revenant
5. Joy
6. The Hateful Eight
7. Steve Jobs
8. Brooklyn
9. The Big Short
10. Carol
Next in line: 11. The Danish Girl 12. Bridge of Spies 13. Inside Out 14. Son of Saul 15. Sicario 16. In the Heart of the Sea 17. Concussion 18. Miles Ahead (possible 2016 release) 19. Beasts of No Nation 20. Macbeth 21. Mad Max: Fury Road 22. Black Mass 23. 45 Years 24. 45 By the Sea 25. Suffragette 26. Truth 27. Straight Outta Compton 28. Our Brand is Crisis 29. Anomalisa 30. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
BEST DIRECTOR
1. Tom McCarthy – Spotlight
2. Ridley Scott – The Martian
3. David O. Russell – Joy
4. Quentin Tarantino – […]

A first crack at Golden Globe predictions

Now that we’re well into the fall months and about to enter the tail end of the 2015 movie release season, I wanted to take my first crack at some Golden Globe predictions. I’ll be mixing these in with Oscar predictions going forward, but early Globe picks are always interesting to me, especially since sometimes you’re still guessing category placement and just what the tastes of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association will look like at the time. They’re almost impossible to accurately guess off the bat the first time around, but that little factoid has yet to stop me from trying all the same. Here goes nothing!
What you’ll notice below is that things more or less reflect how I see the Academy Awards going, but with some slight changes. Obviously, the Comedy or Musical categories open things up to some other contenders, though we won’t know for a bit still how certain contenders will decide to compete. We know that Joy is likely to go Drama, but The Big Short and The Martian, for example, are two that could go the Comedy route. I have pretty much the same winners here as with Oscar, with the exception of Ridley Scott winning Best Director, on the potential strength of The Martian going Comedy and winning Best Picture in that area and getting Matt Damon that Best Actor win as well. The Drama category at the Globes still is where the Best Picture winner for Oscar likely will come from, with Spotlight and Steve Jobs facing off for now, though The Revenant is an X factor spoiler here. We’ll have more HFPA analysis coming soon, but these predictions should suffice for now…
Here you go folks, my initial look at how the Golden Globe awards could shape up:
Best Picture (Drama)
1. Spotlight
2. The Revenant
3. Steve Jobs
4. The Hateful Eight
5. Joy
If there’s a sixth: Brooklyn
Best Picture (Comedy or Musical)
1. The Martian
2. Trainwreck
3. The Big Short
4. Love & Mercy
5. Our Brand is Crisis
If there’s a sixth: Grandma
Best Actor (Drama)
1. Michael Fassbender – Steve Jobs
2. Leonardo DiCaprio – The Revenant
3. Eddie Redmayne – The Danish Girl
4. Johnny Depp – Black Mass
5. Jake Gyllenhaal – Southpaw
If there’s a sixth: Tom Hanks – Bridge of Spies
Best Actor (Comedy or Musical)
1. Matt Damon – The Martian
2. Paul Dano – Love & Mercy
3. Bill Murray – Rock the Kasbah
4. John Cusack – Love & Mercy
5. Bill Hader – Trainwreck
If there’s a […]

Page 1 of 1412345...10...Last »