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LA Film Critics Award: Gravity & Her Share Best Film

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Sandra Bullock & George Clooney Star in Gravity

Sandra Bullock & George Clooney Star in Gravity

The LA Film Critics Association recently dished out their annual awards, and for only the third time in their history Best Film was a tie. Alfonso Cuaron’s Gravity and Spike Jonze’s Her shared the award, with Gravity scooping a total of 4 on the night. Two other categories also tied – Best Actress and Best Supporting Actor (see below). Other winners include Ernest & Celestine for animation, which may surprise a lot of people and possibly introduce an underdog into the Oscars, while Stories We Tell predictably won for Best Documentary.

But the LA Film Critics Awards, though certainly representative of the Oscar contenders, does not generally predict Best Picture winners. Last year they gave the award to Amour, it was The Descendants in 2011 and The Social Network in 2010 – all three were Best Picture nominees at the Oscars but failed to win.

Her Poster

Spike Jonze’s Her

What these awards highlight, perhaps more effectively than most, is that the Academy Awards, like any other film award, do acknowledge the best films within their eligibility criteria, however the ultimate winner can vary based on the resonance and impact these films have with the voters in question. Critics awards barely mirror the Oscars, while the guilds (writers, producers, directors and screen) are much more similar, and there are two reasons for this – firstly there is considerable overlap between guilds and Academy members while critics do not get a vote, and the mode of analysis clearly differs between critics and filmmakers. Though there is a common understanding of what makes a great film, the difference in taste becomes apparent when voting for favorites.

This is a much bigger discussion that cannot be done justice right now. The full list of winners for the LA Film Critics Association Awards are below. Make of them what you will, but hold your bets on Her for now.

2013 Winners

Best Picture – Gravity and Her

Best Director – Alfonso Cuaron (Gravity)

Best Actor – Bruce Dern (Nebraska)

Best Actress – Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine) and Adele Exarchopoulos (Blue is the Warmest Colour)

Best Supporting Actor – James Franco (Spring Breakers) and Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)

Best Supporting Actress – Lupita Nyongo (12 Years a Slave)

Best Screenplay – Richard Linklater, Julie Delphy, Ethan Hawke (Before Midnight)

Best Cinematography – Emmanuel Lubezki (Gravity)

Best Production Design – K. K. Barrett (Her)

Best Editing – Alfonso Cuaron and Mark Sanger (Gravity)

Best Music Score – T Bone Burnett (Inside Llewyn Davis)

Best Foreign Language Film – Blue is the Warmest Colour

Best Documentary – Stories We Tell

Best Animation – Ernest & Celestine

New Generation – Megan Ellison

Legacy of Cinema – Criterion Collection

The Douglas Edwards Experimental Film Award – Cabinets of Wonder: Films and a Performance by Charlotte Pryce

Special Citation – The Creative Team of 12 Years a Slave

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  1. aworldoffilm

    Dec 11, 2013 at 8:49 pm

    Great post. I completely agree with you. You are a good writer. I have a film blog. I tend to write about things that no one has heard of.

    • Only Oscar

      Dec 11, 2013 at 8:52 pm

      Thanks! If you ever want to review some obscure new releases on here let me know!

      • aworldoffilm

        Dec 11, 2013 at 8:55 pm

        Wow thank you that’s great. I really want to get in contact with other viewers. That’s great.

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Guillermo del Toro to Direct Stop Motion Pinocchio for Netflix

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Pinocchio Movie Marker

Fresh off his Oscar win for “The Shape of Water,” Guillermo del Toro is set to make his animated feature film directing debut. Del Toro has received the green light from Netflix to film “Pinocchio,” a stop motion musical version of the classic children’s tale about a puppet who wants to be a real live boy. He will write and produce the film in addition to directing it.

According to Variety, The film will be set in Italy during the 1930’s, a particularly fraught historical moment and a time when fascism was on the rise and Benito Mussolini was consolidating control of the country. Production on “Pinocchio” will begin this fall. Del Toro previously set “The Devil’s Backbone” and “Pan’s Labyrinth” against a totalitarian backdrop, although he placed those stories in Franco’s Spain.

“No art form has influenced my life and my work more than animation and no single character in history has had as deep of a personal connection to me as Pinocchio,” said del Toro in a statement. “In our story, Pinocchio is an innocent soul with an uncaring father who gets lost in a world he cannot comprehend. He embarks on an extraordinary journey that leaves him with a deep understanding of his father and the real world. I’ve wanted to make this movie for as long as I can remember.”

Del Toro previously collaborated with Netflix on its Emmy award-winning television series “Trollhunters,” the first installment of the DreamWorks’ Tales of Arcadia trilogy. The next chapter, “3Below,” is set to debut on in December and it will be followed by “Wizards” in 2019. He created the upcoming Netflix horror anthology series, “Guillermo del Toro Presents 10 After Midnight.” Del Toro’s other credits include “Crimson Peak” and “Pan’s Labyrinth.”

The project comes as Netflix is investing heavily in children’s entertainment — a move that will be increasingly important as Disney prepares to launch its own streaming service. To that end, the company has backed the likes of “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events,” along with upcoming series such as “She-Ra and the Princesses of Power” and “Gabby’s Dollhouse.”

Del Toro will collaborate on “Pinocchio” with the Jim Henson Company, the company behind “The Dark Crystal” and ShadowMachine, the creator of “Bojack Horseman.” Lisa Henson, ShadowMachine’s Alex Bulkley, Corey Campodonico, and Gary Ungar of Exile Entertainment will produce the film. Blanca Lista will co-produce it.

Patrick McHale (“Over The Garden Wall”) will co-write the script, and Mark Gustafson (“Fantastic Mr. Fox”) will co-direct the movie. Guy Davis will serve as co-production designer and the film’s puppets will be built by Mackinnon and Saunders, the team behind “Corpse Bride.”

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Aquaman Director Teases Two Of The Film’s Creatures, And Gosh They Look Silly

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So, Aquaman is a film that’s coming out. It feels like, as a culture, the general cinema-going public still hasn’t quite acclimated to the idea that an Aquaman film is just two months away. Like, y’know, a film about Aquaman. Aquaman.

One person looking to change that general perception is director James Wan, who shared new glimpses at some of the film’s mounted ocean creatures and… oh good lord, just look at them.


Click through to get an even-higher resolution look at what’s to come, but as you can see there’s a saddle-mounted hammerhead shark, and a tylosaurus (a sort-of prehistoric crocodile). Yeah.

Aquaman is due out on the 14th of December, rated 12A, and stars Jason Momoa as the titular rightful ruler of Atlantis. As the film’s PR campaign ramps up, WB released a five-minute extended trailer just a few weeks ago, which you can check out here.

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Box Office News

Halloween Scores Series-Best Opening, As Venom Crosses $450m Worldwide

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Jamie Lee Curtis’ rebootquel Halloween scored a domestic opening of $77.5 million this weekend, after an impressive $27.2M Saturday. Not only does that easily make it the best US opening for John Carpenter’s four-decade old franchise, but it also solidifies it as the second-best opening ever for the month of October behind Sony’s Venom, which netted $80.2M just a few weeks ago.

Speaking of Venom, the critically-derided, audience-adored antihero flick starring Tom Hardy took another $18 million in the US this week, and a further $32 million internationally, taking the film’s global total to a staggering $460.2 million – for perspective, that’s bottom-end MCU money, beating out titles like Thor ($449.3m), Captain America: The First Avenger ($370.6m) and The Incredible Hulk ($263.4m), and gaining on films like Ant-Man ($519.3m) and the original Iron Man ($585.2m). Venom is still yet to open in China and Japan.

Meanwhile, Warner Bros.’ smash-hit musical drama A Star Is Born is still raking in the dough. Star/director Bradley Cooper’s feature, which has garnered a big push in ticket sales from the successful stunt-casting of Lady Gaga as the secondary lead, brought its tally up to $201 million internationally this week, and looks set to continue hanging on at the box office despite fierce October competition.

All three films are in UK cinemas now, with Venom and A Star Is Born both rated 15, and Halloween rather expectedly rated 18.

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