Monday, 14 January 2013

Golden Globes 2013


Motion Picture, Drama: Argo

Actor, Motion Picture Drama: Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln

Actress, Motion Picture Drama: Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty

Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy: Les Miserables

Actor, Motion Picture Musical or Comedy: Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables

Director, Motion Picture: Ben Affleck, Argo

Cecil B. DeMille Award for Lifetime Achievement: Jodie Foster

Actress, TV Musical or Comedy: Lena Dunham, Girls

Animated Film: Brave

Actress, TV Drama: Claire Danes, Homeland

Foreign Language Film: Amour, from Austria

Actor, TV Musical or Comedy: Don Cheadle, House of Lies

Screenplay, Motion Picture: Quentin Tarantino, Django Unchained

Supporting Actress, Motion Picture: Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables

Supporting Actor, Series, Miniseries or TV Movie: Ed Harris, Game Change

Actress, Motion Picture Musical or Comedy: Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook

Actor, Miniseries or TV Movie: Kevin Costner, Hatfields & McCoys

Original Song, Motion Picture: Skyfall (music & lyrics by Adele Adkins and Paul Epworth), Skyfall

Original Score, Motion Picture: Mychael Danna, Life of Pi
Series, TV Drama: Homeland

TV Series, Musical or Comedy: Girls

Actor, TV Drama: Damian Lewis, Homeland

Actress, Miniseries or TV Movie: Julianne Moore, Game Change

Miniseries or TV Movie: Game Change

Supporting Actress, Series, Miniseries or TV Movie: Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey

Supporting Actor, Motion Picture: Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
















Saturday, 12 January 2013

Les Miserables - Review

LES MISERABLES


2013

12A

Starring Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe Anne Hathaway

Directed by Tom Hooper


In 19th-century France, Jean Valjean is paroled but continuously shadowed by Inspector Javert for a minor crime which saw him imprisoned for 19 years. When he takes the responsibility for factory worker Fantine’s daughter on his path to redemption, their lives are changed forever.
Hooper’s vision of the classic novel is by no means subtle. The opening scene, depicting hundreds of downtrodden convicts pulling an imposing ship into harbour, sets the precedent for the film. Les Miserables is an epic film and goes big in every sense: the performances, the emotion, the set design, the cinematography. Nevertheless this stirring musical maintains the brutality and the edge that laces Hugo’s original story and delves into the politics, French history, religion, justice, romantic and familial love with stunning flair and finesse.
The singing is handled with such ease, you treat it the same as you would dialogue after a while. The composition carries meaning that could never be achieved with dialogue alone. To ask why this Les Miserables film couldn’t have been done without singing would be like asking why poetry is not prose; it’s not meant to be. Some of the shots throughout the songs are very tight and claustrophobically close. You can see the exertion of singing live, it’s unflinching, almost uncomfortably intimate – but this just enhances what Victor Hugo intended, these people really are miserable and you shouldn’t turn away from it.
Hooper’s one-take/on-set singing brings a new level of meaning to the lyrics that are known and loved already, and it’s tremendously impressive. Anne Hathaway has spoken of how difficult it is to belt out these theatrical, operatic numbers while not contorting her face. But you can see the energy the actors are pouring into the performances and it is truly invigorating. This comes at the expense of some less polished moments but for the most part, the cast handle the massive songs with extraordinary skill.
Anne Hathaway’s Fantine is nothing short of remarkable, I Dreamed A Dream has definitely been reclaimed from Susan Boyle. This is not the pretty version; it is full of heart wrenching anger, sadness, hopelessness and resignation. Another pleasant revelation was the fact that, not only can Eddie Redmayne act outstandingly well, he has a startling pair of lungs on him. Marius’ rendition of Empty Chairs at Empty Tables is one of the most emotionally charged moments of the entire show.
Not all is so triumphant. Some of the outdoor shots of Paris seem curiously counterfeit which detracts from the full blown realism of the acting and indoor sets. At times Crow teeters into rock and roll notes, and the notoriously difficult Bring Him Home seems ever so slightly strained; but this is nit picking of the highest order.
Les Miserables is one of the greatest stories ever told, Hooper and his cast do it more than justice. When the pivotal moments arrive, they step up to the challenge with resolute determination to do it proud. It’s full of heart, clout and the care of hundreds. Les Miserables packs a supreme punch; even the most die hard fan of the novel or stage show could not disagree with that.

Rating 9.5
 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Oscar Nominations 2013

Best Supporting Actor:
Christoph Waltz, "Django Unchained"
Philip Seymour Hoffman, "The Master"
Robert De Niro, "Silver Linings Playbook"
Alan Arkin, "Argo"
Tommy Lee Jones, "Lincoln"

Best Supporting Actress:
Sally Field, "Lincoln"
Anne Hathaway, "Les Miserables"
Jacki Weaver, "Silver Linings Playbook"
Helen Hunt, "The Sessions"
Amy Adams, "The Master"

Best Director:
David O'Russell, "Silver Linings Playbook"
Ang Lee, "Life of Pi"
Steven Spielberg, "Lincoln"
Michael Haneke, "Amour"
Benh Zeitlin, "Beasts of the Southern Wild"

Best Actor:
Daniel Day Lewis, "Lincoln"
Denzel Washington, "Flight"
Hugh Jackman, "Les Miserables"
Bradley Cooper, "Silver Linings Playbook"
Joaquin Phoenix, "The Master"

Best Actress:
Naomi Watts, "The Impossible"
Jessica Chastain, "Zero Dark Thirty"
Jennifer Lawrence, "Silver Linings Playbook"
Emmanuelle Riva, "Amour"
Quvenzhané Wallis, "Beasts of the Southern Wild"

Best Picture:
"Beasts of the Southern Wild"
"Silver Linings Playbook"
"Zero Dark Thirty"
"Lincoln"
"Les Miserables"
"Life of Pi"
"Amour"
"Django Unchained"
"Argo"

This isnt't quite the full list yet, but it's all the main ones!

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

BAFTA Noinations Announced Full List 2013

BEST FILM
ARGO – Grant Heslov, Ben Affleck, George Clooney
LES MISÉRABLES – Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Debra Hayward, Cameron Mackintosh
LIFE OF PI – Gil Netter, Ang Lee, David Womark
LINCOLN – Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy
ZERO DARK THIRTY – Mark Boal, Kathryn Bigelow, Megan Ellison


OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM
ANNA KARENINA – Joe Wright, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Paul Webster, Tom Stoppard
THE BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL – John Madden, Graham Broadbent, Pete Czernin, Ol Parker
LES MISÉRABLES – Tom Hooper, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Debra Hayward, Cameron Mackintosh, William Nicholson, Alain Boublil, Claude-Michel Schönberg, Herbert Kretzmer
SEVEN PSYCHOPATHS – Martin McDonagh, Graham Broadbent, Pete Czernin
SKYFALL – Sam Mendes, Michael G. Wilson, Barbara Broccoli, Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, John Logan


OUTSTANDING DEBUT BY A BRITISH WRITER, DIRECTOR OR PRODUCER
BART LAYTON (Director), DIMITRI DOGANIS (Producer)- The Imposter
DAVID MORRIS (Director), JACQUI MORRIS (Director/Producer) – McCullin
DEXTER FLETCHER (Director/Writer), DANNY KING (Writer) – Wild Bill
JAMES BOBIN (Director) – The Muppets
TINA GHARAVI (Director/Writer) – I Am Nasrine


DIRECTOR
AMOUR – Michael Haneke
ARGO – Ben Affleck
DJANGO UNCHAINED – Quentin Tarantino
LIFE OF PI – Ang Lee
ZERO DARK THIRTY – Kathryn Bigelow


DOCUMENTARY
THE IMPOSTER – Bart Layton, Dimitri Doganis
MARLEY – Kevin Macdonald, Steve Bing, Charles Steel
McCULLIN – David Morris, Jacqui Morris
SEARCHING FOR SUGAR MAN – Malik Bendjelloul, Simon Chinn
WEST OF MEMPHIS – Amy Berg


ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
AMOUR – Michael Haneke
DJANGO UNCHAINED – Quentin Tarantino
THE MASTER – Paul Thomas Anderson
MOONRISE KINGDOM – Wes Anderson, Roman Coppola
ZERO DARK THIRTY – Mark Boal
 
ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
ARGO – Chris Terrio
BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD – Lucy Alibar, Benh Zeitlin
LIFE OF PI – David Magee
LINCOLN – Tony Kushner
SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK – David O. Russell


FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
AMOUR – Michael Haneke, Margaret Ménégoz
HEADHUNTERS – Morten Tyldum, Marianne Gray, Asle Vatn
THE HUNT – Thomas Vinterberg, Sisse Graum Jørgensen, Morten Kaufmann
RUST AND BONE – Jacques Audiard, Pascal Caucheteux
UNTOUCHABLE – Eric Toledano, Olivier Nakache, Nicolas Duval Adassovsky, Yann Zenou, Laurent Zeitoun


ANIMATED FILM
BRAVE – Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman
FRANKENWEENIE – Tim Burton
PARANORMAN – Sam Fell, Chris Butler


LEADING ACTOR
BEN AFFLECK – Argo
BRADLEY COOPER – Silver Linings Playbook
DANIEL DAY-LEWIS – Lincoln
HUGH JACKMAN – Les Misérables
JOAQUIN PHOENIX – The Master


LEADING ACTRESS
EMMANUELLE RIVA – Amour
HELEN MIRREN – Hitchcock
JENNIFER LAWRENCE – Silver Linings Playbook
JESSICA CHASTAIN – Zero Dark Thirty
MARION COTILLARD – Rust and Bone


SUPPORTING ACTOR
ALAN ARKIN – Argo
CHRISTOPH WALTZ – Django Unchained
JAVIER BARDEM – Skyfall
PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN – The Master
TOMMY LEE JONES – Lincoln


SUPPORTING ACTRESS
AMY ADAMS – The Master
ANNE HATHAWAY – Les Misérables
HELEN HUNT – The Sessions
JUDI DENCH – Skyfall
SALLY FIELD – Lincoln


ORIGINAL MUSIC
ANNA KARENINA – Dario Marianelli
ARGO – Alexandre Desplat
LIFE OF PI – Mychael Danna
LINCOLN – John Williams
SKYFALL – Thomas Newman


CINEMATOGRAPHY
ANNA KARENINA – Seamus McGarvey
LES MISÉRABLES – Danny Cohen
LIFE OF PI – Claudio Miranda
LINCOLN – Janusz Kaminski
SKYFALL – Roger Deakins


EDITING
ARGO – William Goldenberg
DJANGO UNCHAINED – Fred Raskin
LIFE OF PI – Tim Squyres
SKYFALL – Stuart Baird
ZERO DARK THIRTY – Dylan Tichenor, William Goldenberg


PRODUCTION DESIGN
ANNA KARENINA – Sarah Greenwood, Katie Spencer
LES MISÉRABLES – Eve Stewart, Anna Lynch-Robinson
LIFE OF PI – David Gropman, Anna Pinnock
LINCOLN – Rick Carter, Jim Erickson
SKYFALL – Dennis Gassner, Anna Pinnock


COSTUME DESIGN
ANNA KARENINA – Jacqueline Durran
GREAT EXPECTATIONS – Beatrix Aruna Pasztor
LES MISÉRABLES – Paco Delgado
LINCOLN – Joanna Johnston
SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN – Colleen Atwood


SOUND
DJANGO UNCHAINED – Mark Ulano, Michael Minkler, Tony Lamberti, Wylie Stateman
THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY – Tony Johnson, Christopher Boyes, Michael Hedges, Michael Semanick, Brent Burge, Chris Ward
LES MISÉRABLES – Simon Hayes, Andy Nelson, Mark Paterson, Jonathan Allen, Lee Walpole, John Warhurst
LIFE OF PI – Drew Kunin, Eugene Gearty, Philip Stockton, Ron Bartlett, D. M. Hemphill
SKYFALL – Stuart Wilson, Scott Millan, Greg P. Russell, Per Hallberg, Karen Baker Landers


SPECIAL VISUAL EFFECTS
THE DARK KNIGHT RISES – Paul Franklin, Chris Corbould, Peter Bebb, Andrew Lockley
THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY – Joe Letteri, Eric Saindon, David Clayton, R. Christopher White
LIFE OF PI – Bill Westenhofer, Guillaume Rocheron, Erik-Jan De Boer
MARVEL AVENGERS ASSEMBLE – Nominees TBC
PROMETHEUS – Richard Stammers, Charley Henley, Trevor Wood, Paul Butterworth


MAKE UP & HAIR
ANNA KARENINA – Ivana Primorac
HITCHCOCK – Julie Hewett, Martin Samuel, Howard Berger
THE HOBBIT: AN UNEXPECTED JOURNEY – Peter Swords King, Richard Taylor, Rick Findlater
LES MISÉRABLES – Lisa Westcott
LINCOLN – Lois Burwell, Kay Georgiou


SHORT ANIMATION
HERE TO FALL – Kris Kelly, Evelyn McGrath
I’M FINE THANKS – Eamonn O’Neill
THE MAKING OF LONGBIRD – Will Anderson, Ainslie Henderson


SHORT FILM
THE CURSE – Fyzal Boulifa, Gavin Humphries
GOOD NIGHT – Muriel d’Ansembourg, Eva Sigurdardottir
SWIMMER – Lynne Ramsay, Peter Carlton, Diarmid Scrimshaw
TUMULT – Johnny Barrington, Rhianna Andrews
THE VOORMAN PROBLEM – Mark Gill, Baldwin Li


EE RISING STAR AWARD
Find out more about this Award: EE Rising Star Award 2013
Elizabeth Olsen
Andrea Riseborough
Suraj Sharma
Juno Temple
Alicia Vikander

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Martha Marcy May Marlene - Review


MARTHA MARCY MAY MARLENE

2012

15

Directed by Sean Durkin

Starring Elizabeth Olsen, Hugh Dancy, John Hawkes

After fleeing an abusive cult, Martha struggles to readjust to the life she once knew while trying to reconnect with her family in this psychological drama.

What’s remarkable about this film is that the director’s vision is so pure and clear, it hasn’t been diluted by 200 different opinions. It's artsy and quiet. There are so many creative flourishes that are bold and set it apart from so much of the drivel we sit through. The film is structured with a mixture of flashbacks and present day sequences which link and flow into each other with undetectable slight of hand. What’s so brilliant about the flashback structure is the glorious confusion and tension in the opening scenes when we have no idea what Martha is fleeing and what has happened to her. There’s a Polanski level of ambiguity throughout and all the way up to the memorable ending. It’s unclear whether Martha’s paranoia is legitimate or if it’s all in her mind which makes the tension that bit worse because it doesn’t matter whether it’s real or not. Martha Marcy May Marlene is a study into cult life, post traumatic stress, memory, modern American life and family dynamics – but it doesn’t preach, it merely chronicles the events in a beautiful way.

Elizabeth Olsen plays Martha (and Marcy May and Marlene) with extraordinary restraint. The psychosis is constantly bubbling under the surface, always being held back so that when she finally does explode its all the more powerful. She has one of those enigmatic faces that doesn’t give anything away but reveals so much at the same time. She consistently plays that fine line between ‘she’ll be fine once she’s had time to settle in.’ and ‘get this poor woman help, she’s losing the plot.’  Perhaps there may be some deep seated acting talent in the Olsen Twins after all… But in all seriousness, Olsen carries this film with grace and refinement that is altogether missing in some actresses of her age.

Beautifully shot with all together nerve wracking performances, Martha Marcy May Marlene is a must-see recommendation.

Rating 8
Have your say: Did you rate Elizabeth in this film? Also, if you're new to Amateur Reviews, please feel free to become a member of the blog or be sure to return on Friday for our review of the highly anticipated Les Miserables!
 
 
 

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Jack Reacher - Review


JACK REACHER

 
2012

 
12A


Directed by Christopher McQuarrie

 
Staring Tom Cruise, Rosamund Pike and Richard Jenkins

 
 
For the past two years it has become tradition that the last film of the year is a Tom Cruise one. 2011 was sent off with Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol and 2012s NYE film was Jack Reacher. You will be pleased to know it did not disappoint.

When a random shooting takes place, a serial gunman is arrested and all fingers point in one direction. But things aren’t perhaps so clean cut when the sniper issues the demand “Get me Jack Reacher”. Can Reacher discover the truth before it catches up with him?  

For all the naysayers who questioned whether tiny Tom Cruise was the man to play 6’5 Jack Reacher, size really doesn’t matter in this case. Cruise portrays Reacher with impressive stature and convincing physicality combined with just the right amount of charm. It’s hard to deny Cruise’s gravitas and star quality, he brings sheer entertainment to this film. While he may not embody Lee Child's vision to a T, it's the spirit he captures and has hit the nail on the head.

It’s not always fair to judge a film in comparison to other films of the genre but by doing this we see where Jack Reacher succeeds where other action films fall short. The action genre is saturated with lazy movies that rely on boring fight sequences, gun fights and the obligatory car chases that go on for too long (shame on you Bourne Legacy!)

And while Jack Reacher does include these elements, it’s done necessarily and adds to the plot. You will laugh, be on edge, recoil and be left guessing from start to finish. It’s a classy action movie that’s full of character and heart.

Rating 7.5