Online Film Critics Society Ballot 2017

Below is my December 24th ballot for the 21st annual Online Film Critics Society Awards honoring movies released domestically in the United States during the 2017 calendar year. Group winners are highlighted in red. (We were only allowed to vote for one nominee per category this year, but I ranked them all like previous years anyway.) Best Picture #1 Dunkirk #2 Call Me By Your Name #3 Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri #4 Get Out #5 The Shape of Water #6 The Florida Project #7 mother! #8 Lady Bird ABSTAIN…

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REVIEW: The Square [2017]

“Do you want to save a human life?” You always hear labels like “before its time” or “of its time,” but what about “beyond its time?” The latter is the phrase I would use to describe Ruben Östlund‘s Palme d’Or-winning (Cannes) The Square because everything it tries to say in a “pay attention before it’s too late” way doesn’t realize it’s already too late. This idea that our world has turned from one where adults could rely on others for communal protection and safety to one where strangers regardless of…

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REVIEW: Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom [2015]

“I came here to defend my future, the future of my children, compatriots and country” After the success of The Square, there really wasn’t a better place than Netflix for Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom to flourish. A TIFF People’s Choice Award and Oscar nomination later and we see that to be true. Evgeny Afineevsky‘s documentary is very similar to that 2013 film because it is very much a mirror of those events. As a president begins a political takeover into dictatorship, the people of Ukraine stand up…

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Top 25 Films of 2013

(short and sweet and to the point; culled from watching 220+ releases. constantly updated as i catch up to those i missed. click poster for review if applicable) #25: Mud directed by Jeff Nichols #24: Pacific Rim directed by Guillermo del Toro #23: The Conjuring directed by James Wan #22: Satellite of Love directed by Will James Moore #21: Una noche [One Night] directed by Lucy Mulloy #20: The Great Gatsby directed by Baz Luhrmann #19: The Spectacular Now directed by James Ponsoldt #18: Blue Jasmine directed by Woody Allen…

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The 86th Oscars recap through tweets …

Welcome to the 86th Annual Academy Awards everyone! If you didn’t watch the festivities that occurred Sunday night at the Dolby Theatre you are probably a lot better off than most of us because it was a very lackluster affair. We all hoped Ellen DeGeneres would bring a fun, smart, witty return to her success with the 79th installment, but the reality ended up being one of the most dull and safe presentations in quite some time. I guess it wasn’t all bad, though, considering the Academy actually got most…

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Top Ten Films of 2013: A year in cinema to write home about

2013 has been a banner year for cinema with a slew of quality pictures that makes you wonder how only nine got enough first place votes to earn an Oscar nomination for Best Picture. Most of my favorites could have filled that elusive tenth spot for some added acclaim—whether having a chance to win or not. I hadn’t even seen a good chunk of these until the calendar flipped to 2014, the sheer amount of winners was too vast. And after only awarding three films a 10/10 rating last year,…

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REVIEW: Al-Midan [The Square] [2013]

“We were all present; we were one hand” As the initial sit-in at Tahrir Square taught the Egyptian people the power of protest and revolution in securing freedoms they only dreamed they could have, Jehane Noujaim’s Al-Midan [The Square] shares it on an international scale. I’ll admit I thought everything was okay after Hosni Mubarak fled the Presidential Palace. I knew there was still strife, that the Muslim Brotherhood took control through an election process yet still didn’t prove better than the regime they replaced, but I never fathomed how…

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TIFF10 REVIEW: Wasted on the Young [2010]

“Popular opinion is what you’re best at” Australian cinema has really surged lately with the likes of The Square and Animal Kingdom being released stateside this year. Newcomer Ben C. Lucas now throws his hat into the ring with the suspense drama Wasted on the Young. Described in the Toronto International Film Festival program book as a cross between Gus Van Sant’s Elephant and TV’s “Gossip Girl”, I find it hard to disagree. A high school setting in an elite private school populated by attractive, rich, spoiled children recalls all…

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