87th Academy Awards Picks and Predictions (2015)

Once again, it’s time for Oscar predictions.  I did pretty well last year, getting 16 correct once again (that seems to be what I always get), but there are some tight races this year, and I didn’t make it to nearly as many of the nominees as I would have liked.  I make no promises that any of these will be correct, with the exception of a few seemingly done deals, but read on for all of my predictions and personal picks for this year’s Oscars. Tomorrow night should be lots of fun with Neil Patrick Harris as the host!

(I realize this is very late, getting it just a day before the Oscars, and that I haven’t updated the blog as much recently as I would have liked.  I hope that will change going forward, and I thank you for your patience.)

Best Short Film, Live Action:
Prediction: Aya
My Pick: N/A

Best Short Film, Animated:
Prediction: Feast
My Pick: Feast

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What I’d like to see from tomorrow’s Academy Award nominations

With the Academy Award nominations due to be announced tomorrow morning, most movie blogs and websites are busy trying to predict what names will be called before dawn. I don’t have the expertise to join them, nor have I seen enough films to really get a sense of how things will shake out. However, despite my feeling that 2014 was a bit of a dud at the movies, I still have some nominations I’d like to see in the morning. I’ve broken them down below into three general categories based on their likelihood, with some seemingly locks for a nomination, others possible but less likely, and others that will never happen no matter how much I want them to.

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My Top 10 (and Bottom 3) at the Movies in 2014

2014 has come and gone, and while there were some definite highlights to the year of movies, overall I’d say it was a bit disappointing compared to years past.  There were some movies that I really loved, but I wasn’t nearly as enthusiastic in 2014 as I usually am for the world of cinema.  However, things are looking up for 2015, with a lot to be excited about, plus there are still a few movies I need to catch up on from 2014 that I either missed or haven’t gotten around to (Big Eyes, Selma, The Imitation Game, etc.).  But now that 2015 is underway it’s time to take a look back at the highs and lows of 2014 at the movies.  Instead of a traditional top 10 list of movies, I like to list out my favorite cinema-related things from the year.  Some of them are movies, but others might be scenes, characters, moments, or even just announcements.  So without further ado, here are my top 10 and bottom 3 of 2014 at the movies.

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Review/Analysis: After the Dark (aka The Philosophers)

I had come to believe that I’d never get to see The PhilosophersThe trailer came out almost a year ago and I quickly became obsessed with it, but it seemed like the film itself would never materialize.  It made the film festival rounds in 2013 but after that I heard no more about it.  On a whim last week I decided to dig through the internet to see if there was any news about the movie and discovered two surprising pieces of information.  First, The Philosophers had received a new name and was now called After the Dark.  Second, After the Dark had actually received a limited release in theaters last month and was right this second available on demand on my TV.  Needless to say, I jumped at the opportunity to watch the film that had hung steadily at the back of my mind for a year, like an itch I couldn’t scratch, and what I found was something unique and beautiful, that both lived up to my every expectation while subverting them at the same time.

After the Dark tells the story of a philosophy class at an international school in Jakarta, on the seniors’ last day before heading to college.  Continue reading

Trailer Tuesday: The Philosophers

Welcome to “Trailer Tuesday” where I talk about trailers for upcoming movies, since I’ve always found trailers to be endlessly fascinating.

Today I’m bringing you a trailer you probably haven’t seen before.  It’s for The Philosophers (Note: title changed to After the Dark), and it caught my eye a while back for being something different and original.  It’s set to come out sometime this year, but doesn’t yet have a firm release date.  Check it out below, and then read on for some of my thoughts:

The Philosophers initially came to my attention when I read that it was Bonnie Wright’s (Ginny Weasley in Harry Potter) next film. Continue reading