September 17, 2015
        "Black Mass" could get Johnny Depp back in the Oscar game                J.J. Abrams and Denis Villeneuve: Ten potential first time writer/director nominees for Oscar in 2015                Roger Deakins offers up some of his very best cinematography in "Sicario"                "The Martian" launches itself as an awards hopeful at the Toronto Film Festival                "Steve Jobs": Oscar predictions for September                "Sleeping with Other People" is one of the most charming films of 2015                Sandra Bullock looks like a contender in the Trailer for "Our Brand is Crisis"                Sam Smith will sing the theme song for the upcoming 007 film "Spectre"                Richard Gere is an under the radar Best Actor contender for "Time Out of Mind"                Telluride and Venice launch festival debuts into the Oscar race                “The Hateful Eight”: Looking at potential Best Original Screenplay Contenders                David O. Russell and Ridley Scott: Which filmmaking contenders this year are most due for their first win?                Telluride Announces 2015 Lineup - Steve Jobs, Black Mass, Suffragette                “Sicario”: Ten Films to see in September                Will Smith crusades for Best Actor in the "Concussion" Trailer        

Tag Archives: ryan gosling

Ryan Gosling makes an intriguing directorial debut with “Lost River”

I’m a huge fan of Ryan Gosling as an actor, frankly considering him to be among the very best of this generation. As such, I was very interesting in his first foray behind the camera, which happens to be the dark fairy tale of sorts Lost River. He’s worked with some top notch directors in the past, so some interesting things had to have rubbed off on him. Well, he wears a number of influences on his sleeve in Lost River, oddly enough including David Lynch in a huge way. His debut film is a divisive one, but it’s a debut that I think suggests a bright future as a filmmaker.
Gosling has a who’s who list of directors that he’s worked with in his career so far, including Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck (Half Nelson), Nick Cassavetes (The Notebook), Derek Cianfrance (Blue Valentine and The Place Beyond the Pines), George Clooney (The Ides of March), Glenn Ficarra and John Requa (Crazy Stupid Love), Marc Forster (Stay), Andrew Jarecki (All Good Things), as well as Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive and Only God Forgives), and that doesn’t include his upcoming projects with Shane Black, Terrence Malick, and Adam McKay either. Those various filmmaking styles have clearly rubbed off on him, besides combining with his own distinct visual aesthetic and sensibilities. I’m sure his directorial choices in filming his own script might have been different if not for the work with those directors over the past decade or so.
If you’ve never heard of Lost River, here’s a primer. Gosling wrote and directed the tale of a family trying to stay in their home while the entire town around them basically crumbles. It’s dark, surreal, and often disturbing, but with an underlying emotion that sets it apart. The cast includes Christina Hendricks, Ben Mendelsohn, Eva Mendes, Saoirse Ronan, and Matt Smith, as well as newcomer Iain De Caestecker. Noted cinematographer Benoît Debie shot the flick and Johnny Jewel composed the score. When Gosling turned in the script to Warner Brothers, they bought it and let him go off and make what he wanted. Then, reviews at the Cannes Film Festival last year weren’t what they expected, so it’s getting a token release on Friday before quietly going to home video in May. I understand that decision, but I don’t agree with it. Lost River is messy, but it’s far from a bad film.
The thing […]

The 83rd Academy Awards: If I had been a voter

After a brief delay, this series has returned. Yes, once again I’m going to be taking a look back at a recent Oscar lineup and explaining what my vote would have been in each of the big eight categories we all follow so intently each season. I previously mentioned that potentially I could do this once a week with previous Academy Award ceremonies, and while I’m going to be truing to do that, time will still tell. Again, if nothing else, this gives you an interesting look into my cinematic tastes. Over the course of the year you can sort of get a feel for what my current favorites are, but now we can look to the past a bit more.
Alright then, here goes nothing folks…behold my picks:
Best Picture – The Social Network
The nominees here for this ceremony were 127 Hours, Black Swan, The Fighter, Inception, The Kids Are All Right, The King’s Speech, The Social Network, Toy Story 3, True Grit, and Winter’s Bone. My personal pick Blue Valentine wasn’t nominated, of course, so my number two pick is an easy one…The Social Network. Such a shame that it fell short here to The King’s Speech in real life.
Best Director – David Fincher for The Social Network
This category featured Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan), Joel and Ethan Coen (True Grit), David Fincher (The Social Network), Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech), and David O. Russell (The Fighter), and yet the three most interesting choices in Aronofsky, Fincher, and Russell were passed over for Hooper. I’d change that though, and go with Fincher. Had I been given the power to vote for anyone though, I’d probably have gone with Derek Cianfrance for Blue Valentine.
Best Actor – Jesse Eisenberg for The Social Network
I didn’t intend to vote down the line for The Social Network, but so far it just has worked out that way. My personal pick Ryan Gosling for Blue Valentine got snubbed, so I had to go to my second choice. The nominees here were Javier Bardem (Biutiful), Jeff Bridges (True Grit), Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network), James Franco (127 Hours), and Colin Firth (The King’s Speech). It’s hard to argue with Firth’s win, but I think Eisenberg was slightly more deserving overall.
Best Actress – Michelle Williams for Blue Valentine
Honestly, I might prefer Natalie Portman for Black Swan, but I can’t resist the chance to give Blue Valentine an Oscar win […]

Which films could play this year at the Cannes Film Festival?

When it comes to film festivals, there is arguably none more prestigious than the Cannes Film Festival. Each year, critics and the like descend on the south of France hoping to discover the classiest in cinema, which in turn can begin to fuel the impending Oscar speculation. 2015 likely will be no exception, as perhaps a few more Academy friendly projects than usual could wind up at Cannes. Sometime either this month or next, the fest will reveal the titles scheduled to play, so I wanted to get a head start and speculate a bit about what the festival could have in its lineup. Tribeca will be on my mind soon enough, but for now…Cannes gets my attention for the day.
Here now are ten films that could very well play at the Cannes Film Festival, in just a simple alphabetical order:
1. Carol – One of the most anticipated Oscar hopefuls of 2015 is the new movie from Todd Haynes. Based on a Patricia Highsmith novel, it stars Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara in a very unique love story. So yeah, this is a big player, provided the quality is there. Assuming it’s done, I’d be shocked if it didn’t debut at Cannes. Personally, I can’t wait to see it.
2. Erran – The new film from Jacques Audiard, the director of both A Prophet as well as Rust and Bone, makes perfect sense for Cannes. He’s been there before, garnering awards buzz, so this should wind up at the fest as well. The only question is if it’ll be ready in time or not. I’m definitely curious about this one, that’s for sure.
3. Lawless/Untitled Terrence Malick Project – There’s no doubt that the fest would love a new Terrence Malick film, so if it’s actually somewhere close to completion…count this one in for sure. With a cast led by Ryan Gosling and potentially some members of his Knight of Cups cast, there’s plenty of intrigue here. I’m not always wild about Malick, but I love Gosling, so consider me intrigued.
4. The Lobster – I’ve been fascinated with filmmaker Yorgos Lanthimos ever since seeing Dogtooth a few years ago. His follow up Alps was solid, but this new one seems like it could very well be his masterpiece. An English language feature (one of a bunch from foreign directors coming out in 2015), the cast is eclectic, including John C. Reilly, the […]

The 84th Academy Awards: If I had been a voter

Once again today I’m going to be taking a look back at a recent Oscar lineup and explaining what my vote would have been in each of the big eight categories we all follow so intently each season. I previously mentioned that potentially I could do this once a week with previous Academy Award ceremonies, and while I’m going to be truing to do that, time will still tell. Again, if nothing else, this gives you an interesting look into my cinematic tastes. Over the course of the year you can sort of get a feel for what my current favorites are, but now we can look to the past a bit more.
Alright, here goes nothing:
Best Picture – Moneyball
The nominees here for this ceremony were The Artist, The Descendants, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, The Help, Hugo, Midnight in Paris, Moneyball, The Tree of Life, and War Horse. Obviously The Artist took it in real life, and Drive would have been my clear pick had it been nominated, but if I had been a voter my choice would have been between The Descendants, Midnight in Paris, and Moneyball. At the time, The Descendants would have been my pick, but now I think I lean towards Moneyball, so that would wind up getting my vote for Best Picture.
Best Director – Alexander Payne for The Descendants
I’d have voted for Nicolas Winding Refn here for Drive, but unsurprisingly he wasn’t nominated. The actual nominees were Woody Allen for Midnight in Paris, Michel Hazanavicius for The Artist, Terrence Malick for The Tree of Life, Alexander Payne for The Descendants, and Martin Scorsese for Hugo. Without Refn, I don’t have anyone I’m too wild about, but I think Payne might be the best of the bunch. The aforementioned Refn is easily my personal pick overall, but Payne is my choice of the actual nominees.
Best Actor – Brad Pitt for Moneyball
In a perfect world, I’d have seen either Michael Fassbender rewarded for Shame, Ryan Gosling in the lineup for Drive, Tom Hardy cited for Warrior, or Michael Parks in for Red State and subsequently any of them would have been my vote (likely Fassbender), but such is life. The actual nominees here though were Demián Bichir for A Better Life, George Clooney for The Descendants, Jean Dujardin for The Artist, Gary Oldman for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, and Brad Pitt for Moneyball. The choice of these […]

Ryan Gosling: the next actor turned director to watch out for?

HOLLYWOOD ENTERTAINMENT NETWORK: A few days ago at the Cannes Film Festival, A list actor Ryan Gosling’s directorial debut Lost River (which was originally titled by him as the more compelling How To Catch a Monster) screened to a rather divisive response from critics. Some praised his skill behind the camera and the way he worked in many influences from other filmmakers, while others panned the movie for being derivative and an imitation of better works. That more or less takes the film out of major awards contention, but it does leave me still contemplating Gosling’s future as a director. He may not have hit a home run his first time out, but very few actors turned directors do. My hunch is that he’s a few years away from making a flick that really wows folks.
Why do I think that? Look at other A-listers who stepped behind the camera. George Clooney’s debut Confessions of a Dangerous Mind wasn’t rapturously received either, but his next outing was Good Night and Good Luck, which was nominated for Best Picture and got Clooney a handful of nominations himself. For another example, look at Angelina Jolie. She made her debut with the foreign war flick In the Land of Blood and Honey, but this year she’s back with the Oscar frontrunner Unbroken. Gosling certainly wouldn’t be the first to have his sophomore feature be the one that’s really embraced. In fact, it seems to almost be the path of choice for many of his colleagues. Get a perhaps overly ambitious debut out of the way first and then go hit him with something a bit more accessible the next time out.
If you look at the filmmakers that Gosling is apparently referencing, you can see that he’s only beginning to develop his own filmmaking identity. If you mix the work of Derek Cianfrance, David Lynch, Gaspar Noe, and Nicolas Winding Refn, you’re bound to get something rather off the beaten path. Now that he’s basically thrown everything at the wall to see what stuck, he’s got the opportunity to show off his own vision next time out. If not, he can even just begin to figure out which influences to play up and which ones to sort of keep on the back burner.
Right now, Lost River is probably little more than a curiosity, but it’s the start of something. There’s no way of knowing […]

Could a Best Picture nominee launch from Cannes this year?

In the pretty near future, the lineup for the 2014 Cannes Film Festival will be announced. We already know that potential Oscar player Grace of Monaco will be there, but what else could debut at Cannes and then potentially appeal to Academy members? This particular festival isn’t nearly as awards season centric as the New York or Toronto Film Festivals are (or the Telluride Film Festival, for that matter), but we always get a contender or two to discuss. Last year we had Blue is the Warmest Color debut, while future nominees like The Great Beauty, Inside Llewyn Davis, and Nebraska unspooled as well. That got me thinking about what this year’s slate could have inside of it for prognosticators like myself to chew on…
Below you’ll find five titles that I think could have a chance at turning the heads of voters, provided of course that they play at the fest. I’ve opted to focus on American movies just because those are the ones that the Academy tends to focus in on themselves, though of course there are exceptions from time to time like Amour. Still, big time contenders (and even the occasional Best Picture winner like No Country for Old Men) tend to be english language outings. Anyway, now I’ll dive in and speculate about five likely Cannes titles that could have a chance to woo members of the Academy.
1. Birdman – There’s a chance that this comedy from Alejandro González Iñárritu could be too offbeat for Oscar voters, but they’ve gone out on dramatic limbs with him before, so if this tale of a washed up actor doesn’t get too weird for them, there are tons of nomination opportunities. This could also be the role that nabs Michael Keaton his first Academy Award nomination too, so there’s that. This one could either get shut out or be a huge player, but it’s potentially the most likely to transition to awards season attention. We’ll see if it actually debuts at Cannes, but I think it’s highly likely that it will.
2. Magic in the Moonlight – Another highly likely title for the fest, Woody Allen’s next movie is set in France, so that only makes it even more apt for a slot. That being said, of late Allen has basically seen every other film of his become Oscar players, so this could be the off year for him. Still, it’s likely […]

Thinking Out Loud: Oscar® nominees/winners and the ‘Star Wars’ casting rumors

For this week’s random assortment of Thinking Out Loud ideas, I wanted to start by focusing in on the upcoming Star Wars Episode VII casting rumors briefly. Specifically, how J.J. Abrams and company have recently seemed to be honing in on Oscar nominees and winners for the cast. I’ll have some other small things below as well, but that’s the main bent that the column will have today. Anyway, let’s get started!
-Star Wars loves awards darlings, that much seems to be true. Just look at the names being mentioned for roles in the sequel…Benedict Cumberbatch, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Ryan Gosling, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, and Saoirse Ronan to name a few. What do all of them have in common? With the exception of Cumberbatch and Jordan, they’re all Oscar nominees, and in the case of Nyong’o, she’s an Academy Award winner to boot. If nothing else, Abrams and company seem to be meeting or at least considering folks who’ve given a few acclaimed performances over the last couple of years. That’s a good way to keep me interested this sequel, though in all honesty, we’re all going to be seeing the film, regardless.
-Could Godzilla be worth considering for some bigger Oscar categories than just the technical ones? Trust me, I’m not saying we’ve got a Best Picture nominee on our hands, but at the same time, those two trailers have been outstanding, and with an up and coming director in Gareth Edwards inspiring confidence in its potential, I’m starting to wonder if there’s at least an outside chance that we’ll discuss it at some point. Remember, a few years ago we had a similar situation with Rise of the Planet of the Apes. I’m 99% sure that it won’t get that nomination (or Best Director, though I suppose a Screenplay citation is an outside possibility), but hey…you never know.
-Finally, I’m writing this from Atlantic City, where I’m spending my birthday weekend (yes, happy birthday to me), and it made me wonder what the last movie was to use the town in a contemporary setting. Was it that Nicolas Cage flick Snake Eyes? Well, I hope not. Anyway, that was on my mind when I arrived last night, so I figured I’d share it with you all. If any screenwriters are reading this, perhaps you might want to consider setting your next project here? Just a thought…
Until next weekend […]

“The Place Beyond the Pines” to be released in New York and Los Angeles on March 29

The daring new movie from the director of Blue Valentine, The Place Beyond the Pines is a sweeping emotional drama powerfully exploring the unbreakable bond between fathers and sons.
Luke (Academy Award nominee Ryan Gosling) is a high-wire motorcycle stunt performer who travels with the carnival from town to town. While passing through Schenectady in upstate New York, he tries to reconnect with a former lover, Romina (Eva Mendes), only to learn that she has given birth to their son Jason in his absence. Luke decides to give up life on the road to try and provide for his newfound family by taking a job as a car mechanic. Noticing Luke’s ambition and talents, his employer Robin (Ben Mendelsohn) proposes to partner with Luke in a string of spectacular bank robberies – which will place Luke on the radar of ambitious rookie cop Avery Cross (Academy Award nominee Bradley Cooper).
Avery, who has to navigate a local police department ruled by the menacing and corrupt detective Deluca (Ray Liotta), is also struggling to balance his professional life with his family life, which includes his wife Jennifer (Rose Byrne) and their infant son AJ. The consequences of Avery’s confrontation with Luke will reverberate into the next generation. It is then that the two sons, Jason (Dane DeHaan) and AJ (Emory Cohen), must face their fateful, shared legacy.
Focus Features will release The Place Beyond the Pines in New York and Los Angeles on March 29; in select cities on April 5; and in cities across the country on April 12. This film has been MPAA-rated “R.”
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Ryan Gosling, Eva Mendes going strong Unfortunately for many men and women out there, it seems that Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes are still happily together.
The two were recently spotted out together looking happy in New York City around Thanksgiving, states Gosling and Mendes reportedly kept close together during their outings and seemed very much in love.
The two have been together for almost a year, but have kept very quiet about the budding romance.
Do you think they will last?
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Is Channing Tatum going to be People’s Sexiest Man Alive? It is rumored that ‘People’ magazine’s Sexiest Man Alive is going to be Channing Tatum although the official announcement is still days away.
It is rumored that the ‘Magic Mike’ star has won the spot which will be revealed on November 14th, states Extra. He has previously been on the list, but this would be the first time he won the crown.
Last year, Bradley Cooper was the winner which resulted in some backlash as many wanted Ryan Gosling to take the title.
Who do you think should take the title this year?
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