Poll: Now That You’ve Seen “Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation”

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Now That You’ve Seen Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation…?

Cinema Sight Asks: Now that you've seen "Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation," which Mission: Impossible film is best?

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Film Preview: Spotlight (2015)

Film Preview: Spotlight (2015)

Page Revisions:

(August 2, 2015) Original

Release Date:

November 6, 2015

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “The true story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the massive scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese, shaking the entire Catholic Church to its core.”

Poster Rating: –

Review: There was no poster immediately available for my review. Should one become available in the future, this section will be updated.

Trailer Rating: A

Review: This looks like a riveting, compelling look at scandal within the Catholic Church as exposed by the Boston Globe. Tension, clever dialogue and a sense of immediacy combine to make this one of the most exciting trailers released this year.

Oscar Prospects:

This should be one of the year’s key Oscar competitors. A raft of prominent stars taking on a major journalistic story that defined a generation. It might be compared to the likes of All the President’s Men, but if it’s at all good, which the trailer suggests it is, then look for it to be a primary competitor this year.

Trailer

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Oscar Preview: Weekend of Jul. 31-Aug. 2, 2015

We had one film release this past weekend with the potential for Oscar nominations.

Mission: Impossible – Rogue NationOscar Preview: Weekend of Jul. 31-Aug. 2, 2015

Tom Cruise and his crew have been making films since the 1990’s under the franchise Mission: Impossible, an adaptation of the classic television series about a team of secret agents, Mission: Impossible became an important spy series within the 1990’s, but fell out of favor with audiences, resulting in a significant gap between its third and fourth chapters. After Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol proved that the films were still capable of thrilling audiences, a new lease at the cineplex was granted.

The third film in the franchise adds an impressive debut at the box office and an incredible string of reviews from critics who have given it some of the best reviews of the Summer, but when talking about the Oscars, neither of these facts are important when you’re an action film.

This series has never generated Oscar buzz, not from its initial outing to the most recent. Yet, there’s still the possibility that the love of critics gives it a boost with Academy voters, but likely only in the Sound Mixing and Sound Editing categories. All others are out of the question. Even the sound categories will struggle to find dominance against louder, more bombastic soundscapes and those of year-end prestige pictures that sometimes compete here. Ultimately, MI5 won’t likely seal any deals with voters and will continue the series’ string of Oscar failures.

The Morning After: Jul. 27, 2015

Welcome to The Morning After, where I share with you what movies I’ve seen over the past week. Below, you will find short reviews of those movies along with a star rating. Full length reviews may come at a later date.

So, here is what I watched this past week:

In the Valley of ElahThe Morning After: Jul. 27, 2015

The Morning After: Jul. 27, 2015The Morning After: Jul. 27, 2015The Morning After: Jul. 27, 2015The Morning After: Jul. 27, 2015
He talks about how things used to be. He looks at the present as if it were a reflection of the past he once knew. For Hank Deerfield (Tommy Lee Jones), his own military experience should be precisely the one his son has gone through, but when he goes missing, Hank uproots himself to go in search of answers in a mystery that deepens every step he takes.

Jones delivers one of his most reserved and introspective performances to date as the principled ex-MP determined to uncover his son’s murderer while a belligerent military and a put-upon police detective (Charlize Theron) go head-to-head in a fight to find justice. This isn’t your typical Jones who generally plays his roles with explosive forwardness. While he dials it back quite a bit from his typical exploration of characters, it gives us a chance to observe a masterful actor exploring his craft rather than playing to a stereotype he’s carefully constructed over the last two decades.

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Review: Ant-Man (2015)

Review: Ant-Man (2015)

Ant-Man

Rating
Review: Ant-Man (2015)Review: Ant-Man (2015)Review: Ant-Man (2015)Review: Ant-Man (2015)
Director
Peyton Reed
Screenplay
Edgar Wright, Joe Cornish, Adam McKay, Paul Rudd
Length
117 min.
Starring
Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas, Evangeline Lilley, Corey Stoll, Bobby Cannavale, Anthony Mackie, Judy Greer, Abby Ryder Fortson, Michael Pena, David Dastmalchian, T.I., Martin Donovan
MPAA Rating
PG-13 for sci-fi action violence
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This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)

Here’s what happened today in Oscar History.

Born

This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)

Died

This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)

Released

This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 3 (2015)

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Poll: Best of Aug. 2014, Wide

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What’s the Best of Aug. 2014, Wide?

Cinema Sight Asks: Which August 2014 wide release film is best?

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Weekend Preview: Aug. 7-9, 2015

Below are nine previews for films opening next weekend.
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Film Preview: Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet (2015)

Film Preview: Kahlil Gibrans The Prophet (2015)

Page Revisions:

(August 2, 2015) Original

Release Date:

August 7, 2015

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “Inspired by the classic book by Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet is an animated feature film, with “chapters” from animation directors from around the world.”

Poster Rating: C

Review: Unless you’ve seen the trailer, there’s little likelihood that this design will make you curious enough about the feature to seek it out, or even to buy a ticket. It’s fine for what it is, but won’t do much for in-theater ticket sales.

Trailer Rating: B+

Review: If you were to cut out all the seemingly-rudimentary designs that belong to the core plot, the gorgeous animation in the rest of the film would surely tantalize the most disinterested parties. Yet, there has to be a balance and a driving force behind such conceits and this film puts that forward. The premise as written is more understandable than what’s on display in the trailer, but the trailer does a fine job giving us visual splendor to make us entirely curious about the rest of the film.

Oscar Prospects:

The base animation style doesn’t seem that interesting, but the fantasy sequences are stunning. This could get a lot of animation branch folks to vote for the film, which will be one of the key non-Hollywood players in this year’s nominations balloting.

Trailer

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Film Preview: The Falling (2015)

Film Preview: The Falling (2015)

Page Revisions:

(August 2, 2015) Original

Release Date:

August 7, 2015

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “It’s 1969 at a strict English girls’ school where charismatic Abbie and intense and troubled Lydia are best friends. After a tragedy occurs at the school, a mysterious fainting epidemic breaks out threatening the stability of all involved.”

Poster Rating: C-

Review: The true test of trust just doesn’t seem to fit the style of the film or the premise of its narrative. How this could sell the film is beyond me.

Trailer Rating: C

Review: The film doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense from a trailer perspective, which makes it difficult to sell the film to specialty viewers who are looking for original and thought-provoking content or at least films from major names. This trailer isn’t going to entice either demographic.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer

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Film Preview: The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2015)

Film Preview: The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2015)

Page Revisions:

(August 2, 2015) Original

Release Date:

August 7, 2015

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “A teen artist living in 1970s San Francisco enters into an affair with her mother’s boyfriend..”

Poster Rating: C / B- / B-

Review: (#1-#3) All three designs use the same general concept, the film’s three central characters on a coach with differing artistic backgrounds. It plays well into the artistic nature of the protagonist of the film, but doesn’t tell you much more about it. The second and third designs are visually striking, but the first is somewhat bland, but perhaps a tad more realistic.

Trailer Rating: B-

Review: This trailer doesn’t go anywhere, but it provides enough glimpses into the more compelling aspects of the narrative that those who’ve done their research on it might be enticed to the theater, but as the film’s sole resource of information, it won’t do very much to hype it.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer

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Film Preview: Dark Places (2015)

Film Preview: Dark Places (2015)

Page Revisions:

(August 2, 2015) Original

Release Date:

August 7, 2015

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “Libby Day was only seven years old when her family was brutally murdered in their rural Kansas farmhouse. Twenty-five years later, she agrees to revisit the crime and uncovers the wrenching truths that led up to that tragic night.”

Poster Rating: C+ / D

Review: (#1) While it’s fairly rudimentary, it has a stylish undercurrent that could have been better enlivened with stronger visual cues. (#2) You can try to sell your film on Charlize Theron’s presence or you can make it look visually stunning, this poster suggests you can’t have both.

Trailer Rating: B-

Review: There’s a David Lynchian element to this film’s visual style that makes it look far more interesting than its stars suggest. Charlize Theron doesn’t look too bad, but Nicholas Hoult has a creepiness about him that distracts from the film’s more bizarre elements.

Oscar Prospects:

Gillian Flynn’s previous effort, Gone Girl, was supposed to be a major Oscar player, but ultimately landed star Rosamund Pike the film’s only nomination. That suggests that the less hyped Dark Places will face too much competition to be of much impact on this year’s race.

Trailer

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Film Preview: Cop Car (2015)

Film Preview: Cop Car (2015)

Page Revisions:

(August 2, 2015) Original

Release Date:

August 7, 2015

Synopsis:

From IMDb: “A small town sheriff sets out to find the two kids who have taken his car on a joy ride.”

Poster Rating: D / C

Review: (#1) I guess if you think you can sell the film based on Kevin Bacon’s presence, this is the way to go. Otherwise, it’s a dull, dispiriting design. (#2) This is quite a bit more sparse than the first poster, but it has a visual compulsion that gets the viewer to inspect it further to discover its secrets.

Trailer Rating: C

Review: It takes time to get started, but even when its engines are revving at full speed, the narrative seems stuck in the mud with conventional archetypes, storylines that go nowhere and an overarching attempt to make this look like a major star’s giving a complete departure of a performance. It’s calculated without being well reasoned.

Oscar Prospects:

None.

Trailer

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This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)

Here’s what happened today in Oscar History.

Born

This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)
This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)

Died

This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)

Released

This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 2 (2015)

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This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)

Here’s what happened today in Oscar History.

Born

This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)
This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)

Died

This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)

Released

This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)This Day in Oscar History: August 1 (2015)

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