April 29, 2008

"Why So Similar?"

From our new writer Keith Lucas, who you will be meeting on Thursday under the new site, (which is going to knock your socks off) comes the new Dark Knight Trailer. Click the link.

A "Diving" Week for DVD Releases

Hey all...Joey here. One of the downsides (in my opinion) to the summer blockbusters and the summer movie season on the whole is that the DVD releases dry up a bit as studios want people in the theaters, not at home. This is the weakest week for home video in a while, but there is still a worthwhile film or two out there.

My PICK OF THE WEEK clearly stands out from the rest of the pack, and is a visually beautiful film:

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

The story is inspirational, the screenplay exceptional, the direction amazing...what more can you ask of a film?

As for the other releases this week, we have 27 Dresses, which is a decent romantic comedy, nothing special at all, but features a charming performance by Katherine Heigl. Also out is The Golden Compass, a fantasy flick which didn't find an audience theatrically, but should do better at home, and the dancing film How She Move, which is ok, if that's your thing (it's not really mine).

My old school recommendation for this week is one of the few Tim Burton films that I actually like a great deal (this one is my favorite, but I also like Ed Wood and Sweeney Todd). It's Big Fish, and it's a fairy tale of a film that captures the heart and the imagination. Well worth watching if you've never gotten a chance to see it.

What will you guys be buying this week? Anything? Or saving your money for Iron Man this weekend?

April 23, 2008

Cannes Gets Some Oscar Contenders!

Hi everybody...Joey here...the list of films in competition at the Cannes Film Festival was released, and there are a few interesting flicks here.

First of all, here is all the feature films playing in competition and out of competition:

“24 City,” China, Jia Zhangke
“Adoration,” Canada, Atom Egoyan
“Changeling,” U.S., Clint Eastwood
“Che” (”The Argentine,” “Guerrilla,”) Spain, Steven Soderbergh
“Un Conte de noel,” France, Arnaud Desplechin
“Daydreams,” Turkey, Nuri Bilge Ceylan
“Delta,” Germany-Hungary, Kornel Mundruczo
“Il Divo,” Paolo Sorrentino, Italy
“Gomorra,” Italy, Matteo Garrone
“La Frontiere de l’aube,” France, Philippe Garrel
“Leonera,” Argentina-South Korea, Pablo Trapero
“Linha de Passe,” Brazil, Walter Salles, Daniela Thomas
“La Mujer sin cabeza,” Argentina, Lucrecia Martel
“My Magic,” Singapore, Eric Khoo
“The Palermo Shooting,” Germany, Wim Wenders
“Serbis,” Philippines, Brillante Mendoza
“The Silence of Lorna,” U.K.-France, Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne
“Synecdoche, New York,” U.S., Charlie Kaufman
“Waltz With Bashir,” Israel, Ari Folma

“Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” U.S., Steven Spielberg
“Kung Fu Panda,” U.S., Mark Osborne, John Stevenson
“The Good, the Bad, the Weird,” South Korea, Kim Jee-woon
“Vicky Cristina Barcelona,” U.S.-Spain, Woody Allen

When it comes to the ones in competition, the ones that stick out at me are Eastwood's latest submission to the adoring Academy, Soderbergh's Che flick(s), Atom Egoyan's new film, and Charlie Kaufman's directorial debut (which we actually have a script review of up on the site)

Out of competition, Indy is something just about everyone wants to see, and call me crazy but I still look foward to a new Woody Allen movie.

What about you guys? Should the Academy be taking note of these films?

April 22, 2008

Charlie Wilson fights the Cloverfield Monster this week!

Hey hey hey...Joey here, and the DVD releases this week are an eclectic group to say the least. Something for everyone at the stores, and for people like me, it's going to be an exspensive bill when I hit Best Buy later today.

My PICK OF THE WEEK is a supremely entertaining film that was perhaps unfairly targeted as a big Oscar contender last year, but still is a very good movie:

Charlie Wilson's War

While the script that I read last summer was slightly better than the version that hit theaters (mainly the ending took a hit...in the script, it ends with a big punch in the gut), this movie is still very good and very funny, well worth picking up.

A close second this week (and one I strongly considered making my pick) is a certain movie about a certain monster that attacks a certain city:


It has its haters for sure, but I loved this roller coaster of a film and want to relive it again and again (and pause it for better looks at the monster and certain clues in the film). If nothing else, the filmmaking technique deserves a look, and I wholeheartedly endorse this film as well.

There are some other solid releases this week, with the family dramedy The Savages leading the pack there. This is a good week for Phillip Seymour Hoffman, and both works this week featuring him are worth looking at. The Orphanage is fairly creepy and a nice foreign flick, and Starting Out in the Evenening features a very strong lead performance by Frank Langella, and that alone makes it worht a view.

My "avoid at all costs pick" is perhaps one of the worst reviewed films of the past few years. It's One Missed Call, and if you know what's good for you, you'll miss this movie too (though I must confess that I like Ed Burns and feel sorry that he's in this, but still, a stinker is a stinker).

My non new release pick this week is a two for one special. Two 80's John Cusack comedies. They are Better off Dead and The Sure Thing. Both are (in my humble opinion) classics and beat most of what passes for a "teen movie" these days. Check them out!

Which flicks will you guys be picking up this week?

April 18, 2008

Don't "Forget" Some Movies in Theaters This Week!

Joey here, and the movie drought seems to be at an end. There's one big crowd pleaser opening, and a few of the smaller releases will raise some eyebrows.

Let's jump right in. My PICK OF THE WEEK is the newest (and among the best reviewed) of Judd Apatow's gang of humorists. It is:

Forgetting Sarah Marshall

this could be this year's Superbad, and that is a nice compliment to give. Reviews have been steller, and audiences are starved enough for something good to see out there that this should do very well and deserves a look from anyone who enjoyed The 40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up, Superbad, etc...

Also opening wide are The Forbidden Kingdom, which will hit the spot if you're into Jackie Chan or Jet Li kung fu flicks (never were my thing though, I must confess) and 88 Minutes, which looks like something you should only consider seeing if you want to make a donation to the "Get Al Pacino a Good Role" fund.

In limited release we have Morgan Spurlock's follow up to Super Size Me, called Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden? It won't teach you anything new, but looks like it is enjoyable enough. Also opening is The Light Before Her Eyes, a drama about the impact a school shooting has on a woman. This is made by the director of House of Sand and Fog, and if you're in an area playing it, should be worth a view.

Will everyone be oggling Sarah Marshall this weekend? Or watching some martial arts? Or even pitying Pacino?

Lemme know!

April 15, 2008

A Pregnant Week for DVD Releases

Joey here...and there's some nice selections this week on DVD.

Let's jump right in with my PICK OF THE WEEK, which if you haven't seen by now, you need to get on that immediately. The film I'm talking about if of course:


Ellen Page, Michael Cera, J.K. Simmons, literally everyone in this film is fantastic, and it was one of the most winning films of not just this year, but of the last number of years. Get it!

Speaking of winning, another film out this week falls into that category. That film is Lars and the Real Girl, and it features a terrific performance by Ryan Gosling and is a nice little gem for those who haven't seen the film yet.

Another great film out, but one on the other end of the happiness spectrum, is Before The Devil Knows You're Dead. Sidney Lumet may have 10 years on my grandfather, but he still knows how to make a hell of a film. Overlooked by the Academy, it should get a second life at home.

The last film of any quality out this week is Jeff Garlin's tiny comedy I Want Someone To Eat Cheese With. He and Sarah Silverman are very charsimatic and charming, and so is the film.

I usually don't mention the bad releases, but two films out this week are utter crap and get a new distinction from me, the mark of AVOID AT ALL COSTS! The two unlucky films here are In The Name of the King, and Alien Vs. Predator: Requiem. Both will bring you to tears, but not in the way that you'd want a film to.

My already out pick for you guys is last year's Adam Sandler drama Reign Over Me. He and Don Cheadle are very compelling and the story can bring a tear to your eye. If you've never seen it, give it a shot.

Which films this week will be worth your hard earned DVD dollars?

April 11, 2008

What To See This Week?

Joey here with the theatrical releases for the week...real slim pickings, but no fear, next week brings along a ray of sunshine in Forgetting Sarah Marshall, which has been getting tremendous reviews so far...could that be the next Knocked Up? We'll know next week...but, as for this week...

My Pick of the Week is based on the strength of the cast and on the lack of competition (Street Kings and Prom Night aren't going to set the world on fire for anyone) then anything else:

Smart People
Dennis Quaid, Ellen Page, Thomas Hayden Church, Sarah Jessica Parker...this seems like a decent indie comedy, and looks like it feautres a gaggle of good performances, so this one is worth a view

The only other releases of note this week are in very very limited release and are The Visitor, which looks to have a strong lead performance by Richard Jenkins (this years Starting Out in the Evening I suppose), and Young @ Heart, a documentary about a senior citizen pop cover band. Looks like a follow-up to Shine a Light (I kid), but could have a few giggles in it.

Rough week, I know...next week it gets a bit better, and before you know it, we'll have those big tentpole releases to complain about!

What (if anything) are you guys seeing this week?

Happy Birthday Kelly Doucette!!!

One of the Oscar Igloo's favorite writers turns and new number today, from all of us at the Igloo. Happy Birthday man, and see you at the movies!
Comment and give him birthday wishes!

April 10, 2008

Questions for the Readers!

Hello Readers,
With our new concept and look hitting VERY SOON, we are very curious on some points about the site. Please comment on this post answering the following questions:
  1. What is your favorite part of the website?
  2. What is your least favorite part of the website?
  3. What is your biggest complaint about the site?
  4. Did you like Academy Idol? Please explain why or why not?
  5. What is the thing you want to see more or less of?
  6. What did you think of our Oscar night coverage? What would you want to see more of?
  7. Please say anything additional you would want to add. Please don't bash any of the team members or be vulgar in any way. This is suppose to be constructive so please keep it that way.

Thank You, and see you soon!

April 9, 2008

I Drink Your DVD!

Joey here with this weeks dvd blog. As always, these are not every single film, but only the ones that are worth a look in one way or another.

Let's start it off with a film that flew very much under the radar once it opened after having some significant buzz beforehand:

Reservation Road
This film, while not Oscar material, and considering the strength of the book, perhaps a mild dissapointment, is nonetheless a solid acting showcase. Take special note of Mark Ruffalo. This man is severely overdue for a nomination.

Without further ado, my pick of the week (fairly obvious considering the title of this piece):

There Will Be Blood
If nothing else, see it for Daniel Day-Lewis. Paul Thomas Anderson knocked this one out of the park, and any lover of film would do well to treat themselves to a viewing of this.

Other releases of note include Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, which features a very stellar performance by John C. Reilly in an otherwise fair film, Lions for Lambs, which was ignored in a big way when it was released, but should play better at home, and the environmental documentary The 11th Hour.

Special distinction this week goes to two small movies that are better than you'd expect. Rod Lurie makes a very underrated sports/journalism flick in Ressurecting the Champ, which features Samuel L. Jackson doing a fine acting job as a homeless boxer. Ron Livingston, of Office Space fame, gives a very nice performance in Music Within, and Michael Sheen almost steals the show. They play two friends crusading for equal rights for the disabled. Both are worth your time.

My throwback recommendation this an old school pick but an all time classic, and my favorite film as well. It is The Shawshank Redemption, and if anyone has yet to see it, correct that error at once!

Till next week...Happy Viewing!

April 7, 2008

Tom Cruise fails to kill Hitler...again

hey there my babies, Joey here....seems that Valkyrie has been delayed (again) into 2009...so cross it off your Oscar list for this year.

what do you think? Is this a stinker or is the studio legitimately trying to do right by it?

April 4, 2008

The Inagural Theatrical Release Post

hey guys...Joey here with phase 2 of the blog upgrade...previewing the new movies in theaters every friday that I think are worthy of a trip to the multiplex/art house.

We start today with a film which looks like a fun throwback to the old days of slapstick:


Clooney's directorial work is always entertaining and this looks like no exception, even though the reviews seem to indicate that it won't be winning him an Oscars.

My pick of the week, however, is something a bit different:

Shine a Light

Scorsese directing a concert film/documentary about THE ROLLING STONES? In IMAX, no less. Sign me up. At the very least, it looks heads and toes better than the Hannah Montana concert film that dominated the box office earlier in the year.

If you're a horror fan, The Ruins is based on a great book and looks sufficiently creepy.

Of note if you're in a major market is My Blueberry Nights, which opened Cannes last year and looks like an interesting take on the American road movie, and Meet Bill, an Aaron Eckhart "dramedy" vehicle that looks designed solely to get him awards attention. Don't hold your breath for it though.

There's enough variety here (with Jodie Foster's kid flick Nim's Island also opening) that everyone should be pleased enough with the choices.

What will you guys be seeing this weekend?

April 1, 2008

The Inagural DVD Preview Post

hey all...Joey here with the first of hopefully many DVD release blogs!

Everyone seemed behind the idea, so I'm thinking the format will be that I highlight a couple of new movies being released every tuesday and also mention a few flicks that everyone might not have seen but are well worth looking for (at least in my humble opinion) on your next DVD shopping excursion.

My pick of the week for the new releases is:

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Johnny Depp slashing throats...need I say more?

Honorable mention goes to Jake Paltrow's film "The Good Night" which is an interesting, if flawed, film. Worth a view though, if you see it on the shelf.

As for films already out on dvd, I thought it was apt to start with a few films that never received a theatrical release but were nonetheless of some degree of quality.

The straight to dvd films are Michael Ian Black's "relationship" comedy "Wedding Daze", which has some genuine laughs in it, and that is a ringing endoresement considering the state of comedy today that is not involving Judd Apatow, and Amy Heckerling's "I Could Never Be Your Woman", a sweet romantic comedy that has winning performances by Michelle Pfeiffer, Paul Rudd. and Atonement's Saoirse Ronan Both films were deserving of more of an audience, and have to hope for people to spot them on dvd.

That's this week's DVD preview...be sure to let me know what you think of it!

Be back on Friday (or perhaps Thursday night) to preview the theatrical releases for the week!