Gravity reviews

ITALIANO
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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby ITALIANO » Tue Dec 10, 2013 11:47 am

Big Magilla wrote:The year's best "foreign" film according to the Israeli Film Critics:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/g ... ilm-664437



Uri???? :)

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Big Magilla » Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:23 am

The year's best "foreign" film according to the Israeli Film Critics:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/g ... ilm-664437
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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Big Magilla » Tue Nov 12, 2013 1:54 pm

I don't know. Some of these may be worthier candidates, but if the writers' branch nominates it, I still see it a potential winner with masses.
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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby jack » Tue Nov 12, 2013 11:49 am

Eric wrote:Would give all 10 of these better odds:

American Hustle, David O. Russell & Eric Singer
Blue Jasmine, Woody Allen
Enough Said, Nicole Holofcener
Frances Ha, Noah Baumbach & Greta Gerwig
Her, Spike Jonze
Inside Llewyn Davis, Ethan & Joel Coen
Lee Daniels' The Butler, Danny Strong [Not entirely sure how this is "original," either, but that's how it's listed.]
Nebraska, Bob Nelson
The Past, Asghar Farhadi
Saving Mr. Banks, Kelly Marcel & Sue Smith


Even though no one has seen it, I'd maybe say the Academy will throw David O. Russell a bone and give him the original screenplay Oscar.

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Eric » Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:29 am

Would give all 10 of these better odds:

American Hustle, David O. Russell & Eric Singer
Blue Jasmine, Woody Allen
Enough Said, Nicole Holofcener
Frances Ha, Noah Baumbach & Greta Gerwig
Her, Spike Jonze
Inside Llewyn Davis, Ethan & Joel Coen
Lee Daniels' The Butler, Danny Strong [Not entirely sure how this is "original," either, but that's how it's listed.]
Nebraska, Bob Nelson
The Past, Asghar Farhadi
Saving Mr. Banks, Kelly Marcel & Sue Smith

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby FilmFan720 » Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:28 am

her.
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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Big Magilla » Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:27 am

If not Gravity, then what? Maybe Saving Mr. Banks because it's oddly deemed an original even if it isn't. Inside Llewyn Davis? Nebraska? Possibilities, but seem to be more niche nominees than fully embraced ones. Blue Jasmine? Maybe, but does Woody really need another Oscar?
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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Eric » Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:18 am

Big Magilla wrote:Gravity: Original Screenplay; Cinematography; Editing; Visual Effects; both Sound awards

I'm about 95 percent certain Gravity won't even be nominated for best original screenplay, much less win.

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Uri » Mon Nov 11, 2013 4:08 am

Ahh, the 80’s, he said with mist in his eyes…

Well – that’s the decade I was young in. And that’s when I became aware of the concept of reading a film rather than merely watching it, (though I actually didn’t see many films back then – the army (the Lebanon war, the Intifada – what a jolly old, dreadful time) and my university studies were too time consuming), so I guess that’s why I do have a softer spot for some of the films of that era which are generally dismissed here. But although I do agree that one can trace the roots of the terminal condition of story-telling in American cinema back then, still, the full bloom of it materialized a couple of decades later.

A few years ago, an Israeli film maker made a short film for tv which was a hysterically funny, fresh and original take of the absurdity of life (and death). Based on the success of that early film he was invited to a workshop for writers at Sundance, where he was offered help with developing the script for his first feature film. It was based on his own personal recollection of his troubled childhood growing up in a kibbutz. The end result, while still containing some interesting observations, was painfully “well made”, structurally predictable, generic coming of age story. And hearing this director proudly tell how inspiring it was to be mentored by this great American writer (could it be William Goldman?), and how he learned how to shape his screenplay according to some golden, sacred rules, it was so obvious where the life was sucked out of his genuinely heartfelt creation.

And this is my big, painful issue with American cinema (and more and more with Israeli too). There is this self inflicted, voluntarily put on narrative straight jacket which is inflicting most screenplays. It can be traceable everywhere. It’s maybe more elusive but it seems it’s almost as mandatory as the Hays Code once was. And as was the case with that code, these current ground rules are originated in fear (and greed) and again, as it was in old times, there are talented people who managed to play around them. So what we get time and again with most American films and tv shows, is a narrative driven by well known, “proven” maneuvers, a lot of simplistic cause and consequence actions, brightly lit closures and explicitly spelled messages, and of course, the obligatory happy, or at least reassuring, ending. So way too often, even when one is surprised by some twist of a plot, there is this sense, if not in real time then in retrospect, of an inevitability which is not rooted in the story which is told or the nature of the circumstances or the characters of it but rather in some grad old axiom of what film realm should be. And it’s more and more about coming up with a sharply defined plot and avoiding like a plague a true, subtle emotional and moral ambiguity. It’s all about avoiding the need to face adulthood and the frustrations it brings along with it. (I think this is was some of us are so devoted to a show like Mad Men, which, among other things, explores and dwells in this ambiguity).

(And yes, being myself, I must say this. An added flavor to this very sophisticated in its own cynical way juvenile simplification is having our-way-of-living taken for granted as a gospel, a metaphorical and way too often literal flag waving, xenophobia or at least ignorance of the “others”).

I can’t help it, but for all its technical (and writing a screenplay is a technique too) sophistication, for me, the script of Gravity (and for the sake of this discussion, it stands for numerous other films) felt as it was conceived by a 12 year old boy, assisted by his 16 year old brother with the dialog. Even worse – not by an adult who reconnect with his inner 12 year old (another tiresome, meaningless cliché) but by someone who tries to emulate what a generic preteen would relate to without being challenged. And this tendency originates in the fact that for too many people in film making, and probably the majority of filmgoers, the way they view Life and the world we live in, (personally, but more relevantly artistically), is not a result of looking at them for what they are by for how they are reflected in popular culture. So they are bound to reproduce patterns and reshape reality into recognizable ways of expressions instead of freshly, unaffectedly, and therefore, God forbids, maybe even disturbingly tell a story in a new and surprising way. So we use a lot of terms like stylization, myth making, references and so on, but alas, way too often they are smoke screen for over simplified, lazy and even cowardly storytelling. And that’s where I’m coming from.


p.s. and this is the kind of exchange of ideas I was referring to, Okri.

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Mister Tee » Sun Nov 10, 2013 4:14 pm

To go back to Uri’s original plaint: I’d hope at this point it would go without saying that your posts are read and appreciated. As far as not getting response to this particular one, I guess I felt I’d spoken my piece on the film some weeks ago – expressing some dissent from the overall euphoria, but having a higher opinion than you – and there wasn’t much to add except to say we’ll have to agree to disagree. Maybe you wanted something louder than that, but I didn’t have that to offer. (I do think your antipathy is a bit over-the-top, but I understand that as a response, when so much of the world is proclaiming the film a masterpiece. As I’ve said, I LIKE 12 Years a Slave, but when I read the “I was shaken to my core/I couldn’t move for ten minutes” responses, I want to scream “Have any of you ever seen a movie before?”)

As to your larger point, I partially agree and partially don’t. As a general matter, I think critics are overselling most movies nowadays. I can’t tell if it’s simply that they’re going soft, or if I’m becoming crankier in my approaching old age (I sometimes wonder if I’d have been as enthusiastic about the films from my youth had I not been so…well, young…when I saw them). I’m very like you in generally gravitating toward what I’d label the intelligent mainstream – what seemed the norm during the 70s, not so much since. Critics have lately sent me to a lot of films that made me dare hope I’d see a top-drawer example of such. A fair number have disappointed me thoroughly – Argo, Django Unchained, The Descendants. Another batch has struck me as far more mid-range than touted – Blue Jasmine, Life of Pi, Captain Phillips. But, for me, a few have lived up to the reaction – last year, Zero Dark Thirty, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook. (I’m skipping Amour, because we’re speaking of American films)

This year, both Gravity and 12 Years strike me as overpraised, but still quite worthy of interest for assorted reasons. I don’t anticipate either being my top film of 2013; I look with anticipation to Inside Llewyn Davis, Her, Nebraska, American Hustle and The Wolf of Wall Street, hoping one Or more will manage to truly ring my chimes. But in general I’m excited by the environment that can produce a significant number of such films, and, the best news, find audiences to go to see them. After the 2010 Oscars – which featured an unusually high number of high-grossing nominees -- BJ wondered, Will the hits be back? The journey’s been hit and miss, but I’d say the answer is yes: last year, 6 of the 9 films nominated for best film grossed easily over $100 million (with Zero Dark Thirty barely short of that mark). We’re a long way from the days of the early 2000s, when $30 million was a typical ceiling for best picture contenders. This kind of success means that, despite the industry’s propensity for trash, a certain number of ambitious films will be made, and not just as poverty-row indies, but as mainstream films featuring the best actors.

The part of your post I really disagree with is that this is some sort of age of decline. I lived through such a time – the 80s – and this era to me is so much more interesting I can’t believe anyone would take your view. Right now, thanks to a core of old-timers (Scorsese, Spielberg, Eastwood, Allen, the Coens), the spectacular group that emerged in the mid-90s (David Fincher, David O. Russell, Ang Lee, Danny Boyle, Alexander Payne, Paul Thomas Anderson, Alfonso Cuaron, Wes Anderson, Darren Aronofsky), and a few recently-arrived (Paul Greengrass, Steve McQueen, Bennett Miller), we can count on at least a few potentially great works every year. Of course they’re not all going to succeed every time – the fabled Malibu gang of the 70s had their duds as well. But on the whole this group elevates the cinema ecology, making films that are interesting even if they don’t achieve their highest goals. Having lived through a time when films like Rain Man and Dances with Wolves were sweeping the Oscars, I’m very grateful to be following films now…even when things don’t live up to my highest expectations (or the critics’ promises).

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Big Magilla » Sun Nov 10, 2013 3:53 pm

I don't know about Best Score or Song - Frozen, with songs by Broadway's Robert Lopez (Avenue Q; The Book of Mormon) and his wife, Kristen Anderson-Lopez, is being hyped as Disney's best musical since Beauty and the Beast. We may actually see a better slate of nominees in the song category this year than we have for some time.
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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby jack » Sun Nov 10, 2013 3:34 pm

mlrg wrote:
Big Magilla wrote:
Greg wrote:You don't see Gravity winning cinematography, which is probably its biggest lock after visual effects and a win that probably even Italiano and Uri think is deserved?


Damn! I knew I forgot something. That's six wins vs. six for 12 Years a Slave. Hmmm.

Gravity: Original Screenplay; Cinematography; Editing; Visual Effects; both Sound awards
12 Years a Slave: Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay


add best original score to Gravity


And from what I'm lead to believe, original song for 12 Years.

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby mlrg » Sun Nov 10, 2013 3:25 pm

Big Magilla wrote:
Greg wrote:You don't see Gravity winning cinematography, which is probably its biggest lock after visual effects and a win that probably even Italiano and Uri think is deserved?


Damn! I knew I forgot something. That's six wins vs. six for 12 Years a Slave. Hmmm.

Gravity: Original Screenplay; Cinematography; Editing; Visual Effects; both Sound awards
12 Years a Slave: Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay


add best original score to Gravity

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby Big Magilla » Sun Nov 10, 2013 2:26 pm

Greg wrote:You don't see Gravity winning cinematography, which is probably its biggest lock after visual effects and a win that probably even Italiano and Uri think is deserved?


Damn! I knew I forgot something. That's six wins vs. six for 12 Years a Slave. Hmmm.

Gravity: Original Screenplay; Cinematography; Editing; Visual Effects; both Sound awards
12 Years a Slave: Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay
“‎Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats.” - Voltaire

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Re: Gravity reviews

Postby ITALIANO » Sun Nov 10, 2013 2:19 pm

Greg wrote: a win that probably even Italiano and Uri think is deserved?


:D

It would certainly be more deserved than Screenplay, Director or, heaven forbid, Actress. But even Cinematography - I don't know, really. I should see the other nominees. Still, I'm not completely anti-Gravity: I'd give it Best Visual Effects and those Sound awards.


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