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Golden Globes Nominations and Dark Knight Rises Trailer

Posted by: Matthew Turner 21/12/2011 @ 14:30
Subject: Film

Films seen so far this year: 496
Films seen in the last week: The Muppet Christmas Carol, Bad Santa, The Artist (again), The Lady, Zelig, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close


Awards season: The Golden Globe Nominations
And they're off! Rightly or wrongly, the Golden Globe nominations are seen as the first major indicator of the awards season front-runners and if that's the case then the latest set of nominations would seem to be very good news indeed for The Artist, which, with six nominations in total, has gone from being the dark horse to the front-runner. Never bet against Harvey Weinstein, basically. It does now seem certain that Jean Dujardin will pick up a Best Actor nomination to go with the film's Best Picture nomination and if that happens I'll be jumping for joy.

I also think that Oscar voters can't resist the chance to make Oscar history and if The Artist wins, it will be the first silent film (forgetting that there is, technically, sound in it) to win Best Picture since Wings in 1927 (which was also the first movie ever to win Best Picture). It's also interesting to see Moneyball picking up some awards attention, with nominations for Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill, Best Screenplay and Best Picture. I'm also thrilled that Woody Allen has picked up nominations for Best Director, Best Picture, Best Actor (Owen Wilson) and Best Screenplay for Midnight In Paris (one of my favourite films of the year) – I really hope it gets nominated for at least one of those categories at the Oscars. It's also great to see Bridesmaids get Best Picture and Best Actress (Kristen Wiig) nominations, though as that's in the “tricky” Best Comedy or Musical section, it's unlikely to translate to Oscar success in the same way.

Looking at the list, there's only one sure-fire Oscar winner and that's Christopher Plummer for his performance as Ewan McGregor's gay dead dad in Beginners – it's practically got his name on it this year. Everything else is still very much up in the air, but I'll be rooting for some combination of The Artist and Midnight In Paris come Oscar time. I like The Descendants a lot too and wouldn't be surprised if that gives The Artist a better run for its money when the Oscar nominations are officially announced on 24th January.

Trailerwatch: The Dark Knight Rises
Confession: I'm not the Batman Dark Knight fanboy everyone else seems to be - I recently passed up the opportunity to see the first six minutes of The Dark Knight Rises, for example (summary from friends: there's a bit with a plane and Tom Hardy as Bane mumbles so badly you can't hear what he's saying). That's not to say I don't want to see the film (I do) and I will admit to being curious about the plot. To that end, the recently released trailer provides several intriguing details: we get our first glimpses of Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle/Catwoman (though not in the Catwoman suit, sadly - I guess they're saving that for later on), Tom Hardy as costumed “terrorist” - according to the imdb – Bane (who seems to want to blow up a football field for some reason), Marion Cotillard as Miranda Tate (looking smoking hot – internet speculation still seems convinced she's playing Ra's Al Ghul's daughter and the imdb lists Josh Pence as “Young Ra's Al Ghul”, so that could still happen) and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, briefly glimpsed as, um, “John Blake” (not a name that's familiar to Bat-fans).

The rabid fanboy speculation about JGL is particularly amusing, with a certain subsection convinced that he'll end up as Robin, but I'm going to go out on a limb here and say not a chance. (Nightwing, maybe). Other than that, it all seems rather topical, with Selina threatening Bruce with some 99%-style whisperings about the rich being about to lose it all or something. Also, is that a Bat-Tank at 1m48? And what's that clunky-looking flying thing?

Other things I'm not convinced by: 1) as cool as the blowing-up-the-football field mid-game idea is, the CGI looks very dodgy in that trailer and 2) it looks like Bane learns Batman's true identity, which is something that drives me crazy in superhero movies (worst example: Batman Forever, when Val Kilmer pretty much says “Whoops! I'm Batman!” to Nicole Kidman's character). Anyway, it doesn't open here till July so there's still plenty of time to fix that dodgy CGI and re-record all Tom Hardy's lines.

Top 10 Films On Release This Week (as recommended by me):
Three new entries this week, with The Artist (technically out on the 30th, but there's no blog then), Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol and David Fincher's remake of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo all making it into the top ten. Fun Girl With The Dragon Tattoo-related fact: by a weird coincidence, both the stars of the original film have films out this fortnight too: Noomi Rapace is in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows and Mikael Nyqvist is in Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol. Anyway, I'd also like to put in a good word for Las Acacias and Take Shelter, both of which I've bumped but they're both about to start their second runs at the Odeon Panton St (saviour of Margaret, which is also still playing).

There are no new interviews this week but you can still read our exclusive interview with Dreams of a Life director Carol Morley, our press conference interviews with Guy Ritchie, Robert Downey Jnr, Jude Law and Noomi Rapace for Sherlock Holmes 2, our exclusive interview with Mark Williams (aka Arthur Weasley) for the DVD of the final Harry Potter film, our press conference interviews with Hugo director Martin Scorsese and Hugo actors Asa Butterfield, Chloe Grace Moretz and Ben Kingsley, our exclusive interview with Terence Davies for The Deep Blue Sea, our semi-exclusive (i.e. round table) interview with Michael Shannon for Take Shelter, our exclusive interview with Snowtown star Daniel Henshall, our semi-exclusive round-table interview with Rum Diary (and Withnail & I) director Bruce Robinson and our semi-exclusive round table with The Rum Diary star Amber Heard.

1. The Artist
2. Margaret
3. Moneyball
4. My Week With Marilyn
5. Snowtown
6. Dreams of a Life
7. Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol
8. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
9. We Need To Talk About Kevin
10. Wreckers

DVD of the Week: The Inbetweeners Movie (out now, RRP £19.99)
This week's DVD of the Week is The Inbetweeners Movie, the feature-length adaptation of the British hit TV comedy that became a runaway smash hit when it was released without much fanfare (there was no official press screening, which is never a good sign) earlier this year. When their final year at Rudge Park Comprehensive comes to an end, clunge-obsessed best friends Will (Simon Bird), Simon (Joe Thomas), Neil (Blake Harrison) and Jay (James Buckley) decide to spend Jay's recent inheritance on a lads-only holiday, so they head to the Greek holiday hotspot of Malia in search of “sex, booze, sex, tits, booze and sex.”

With the show's creative team in full control (it's directed by series director Ben Palmer and written by creators Damon Beesley and Iain Morris), it's no surprise that the film sticks so closely to the winning formula of the TV show. As a result, it sidesteps the usual pitfalls of TV-to-big-screen adaptations, maintaining the same tone, pace and gag rate that made the series so successful in the first place. The four leads are excellent, delivering strong comic performances and even adding a little depth to their believable, likeable characters.  Most importantly of all, the film is consistently laugh-out-loud funny, thanks to some terrific comic set-pieces; an early dance routine is genuinely hilarious and there are several great (and, true to form, extremely crude) sight gags. In short, this is a hugely enjoyable, genuinely hilarious comedy that won't disappoint fans of the TV show, thanks to a witty script, assured direction and terrific comic performances from the four leads.

The excellent extras package includes: a Making Of, several featurettes (Joe Thomas Dangerman, Things We Did Instead of Rehearsing, London Premiere, Skye Premiere) and nearly 30 minutes of deleted scenes and bloopers. The Triple Play (more expensive at £27.99) also includes an exclusive, full-length Extended Cut of the film with commentaries from writers Damon Beesley and Iain Morris and from the four male leads. Recommended.



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