Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Best Movies of 2011

And so, it all comes down to this. I was thrilled with the variety and scope of my 2011 moviegoing, and I hope this list reflects that. Among the gems and masterpieces the past year had to offer is "A Separation," seen below.

To find out where this and the rest of my favorite films landed on my 2011 Top Ten List, now online at SouthPhillyReview.comCLICK HERE.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Best and Worst Movie Posters of 2011

For The House Next Door, the official blog of Slant Magazine, I compiled lists of The Best and Worst Movie Posters of 2011, the year-end culmination of my weekly Poster Lab column.

Click on and check out where your favorite and most reviled poster designs landed.

For The Worst Posters of the Year, CLICK HERE.
For The Best Posters of the Year, CLICK HERE.

Meryl Streep Essay: Acting, Politics with Oscar's Queen

For Fandor's Keyframe blog, I was happy to write a piece on none other than Meryl Streep, and two films that give you a rare glimpse into her actorly process: "The Iron Lady," coming soon to theaters, and "Theater of War," a 2008 doc about Meryl's role in the NYC production of "Mother Courage."

To read the article, now online at Fandor's Keyframe, CLICK HERE.

'War Horse,' Film vs. Play

For Nathaniel Rogers's The Film Experience, I whipped up a post about "War Horse," comparing the film and the play, both of which I saw two weeks back (the play was breathtaking!).

To take a look at the article, which weighs the plus and minuses of Steven Spielberg's take on the material, CLICK HERE.

The Worst Movies of 2011

It's that time of year again. South Philly Review has my list of the 10 Worst Movies of the Year. "Cowboys & Aliens" (below) figures prominently.

The films that just missed the cut? "Twilight 4.1," "Bad Teacher," Kung Fu Panda 2," "The Eagle," "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close," "Trespass," "Restless," and "Your Highness." To read the full list, now online at, CLICK HERE.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Angelina Jolie Feature

Two weeks ago, I had the great and unique pleasure of attending a press conference for Angelina Jolie's terrific debut feature, "In the Land of Blood and Honey." Ms. Jolie was present. I sat mere feet away from her. I spoke to her. She responded, and looked into my eyes.

Seriously, as much as I love the opportunities I get to meet with famous folks I admire, and as surreal as it may be at times, I'm not the starstruck type. I enjoy approaching interviews in a way that's both casual and very much about the work at hand. But this was...well, my heart was beating big time when it came time for to ask a question. (It's Angelina, dude.) I'm proud to say she answered the question well.

My article on the experience is now online at Slant Magazine. CLICK HERE.

'The Hobbit' Trailer

Scratch that...

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

'The Dark Knight Rises' Trailer

Because I just never post impromptu stuff to this poor little blog anymore, herewith is the most anticipated trailer in many a moon:

Naturally, Anne Hathaway's teasy Catwoman bits have me tingling. Ditto the Occupy Gotham swarm of prison escapees. Give it to me, Nolan.

'The Artist' Review

I have a screener for this black and white beauty sitting in front of my TV, and if there's anything I'm looking forward to post-holiday, it's popping it in to revisit the glee I felt at this year's New York Film Festival. "The Artist" is all kinds of lovely, and since no films that top it on my Best of 2011 list have a prayer, I'm all for it claiming the Best Picture Oscar.

Read my full review of "The Artist," now online at CLICK HERE.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Interview with Cast and Crew of 'Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy'

I was thrilled to interview Gary Oldman, Colin Firth, Peter Straughan and Tomas Alfredson--actor, actor, writer and director of "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy," a gorgeously constructed, perplexingly smart spy thriller that stands among the year's very best films.

Take a read of my feature on these fine gentlemen, now online at Slant Magazine. CLICK HERE. And please be sure to swing by The House Next Door, where I'm regularly posting articles on Oscars, Posters, Stars on the Rise, and more fun stuff. GET IT HERE.

'Shame' Review

I've made no secret of my disappoint with this movie, which I surely thought would have had a place on my year-end Top 10. But know that this is indeed a film of truly great performances, if little else.

Read my review of "Shame," now online at CLICK HERE.

Friday, December 2, 2011

'Hugo' Review

I was really taken with, and blindsided by, Martin Scorsese's "Hugo," a supposed kids movie that winds up a cinephile's valentine. It really grows on you, which is not to say it isn't totally magical in the moment, too.

Read my review of "Hugo," now online at CLICK HERE.