November 2013


It's like every childhood Thanksgiving rolled into one.

It’s like every childhood Thanksgiving rolled into one.

Revisiting Childhood Movies Part V

King Kong vs. Godzilla  (Kingu Kongu tai Gojira)  (キングコング対ゴジラ)

  • Director:  Ishirô Honda
  • Writer:  John Beck  /  Willis H. O’Brien  /  Shin’ichi Sekizawa  /  George Worthing Yates
  • Producer:  John Beck  /  Tomoyuki Tanaka
  • Stars:  Tadao Takashima, Kenji Sahara
  • Studio:  Toho  /  Universal (U.S. release)
  • Award Nominations:  none from groups I track
  • Length:  99 min  (91 for U.S. release)
  • Genre:  Horror  (Monster)
  • MPAA Rating:  none
  • Release Date:  11 August 1962  /  3 June 1963 (U.S.)
  • Box Office Gross:  $2.725 mil
  • My Rating:  ***
  • My Rank:  #46  (year)
  • Nighthawk Nominations:  none
  • Nighthawk Notable:  none
  • First Watched:  on Channel 9 every Thanksgiving
  • Number of Times Watched as a Kid:  6 or 7

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Immense talent gone so soon.

Immense talent gone far too soon.

A Good Man is Hard to Find and Other Stories

  • Author:  Flannery O’Connor  (1925-1964)
  • Published:  1955
  • Publisher:  Harcourt, Brace
  • Pages:  251
  • First Line:  “The grandmother didn’t want to go to Florida.”
  • Last Line:  “He came regularly once a week with a bag of breadcrumbs and, after he had fed these to the peacock, he would come in and sit by the side of her bed and explain the doctrines of the Church.”
  • Film Version:  television adaptation of one of the stories in 1957; short film of one of the stories in 1993
  • First Read:  Fall, 1995

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My Best Actor and Actress winner in my Best Picture winner - before things go bad.

My Best Actor and Actress winner in my Best Picture winner – before things go bad.

You can read more about this year in film here.  The Best Picture race is discussed here, with reviews of all the nominees.  First there are the categories, followed by all the films with their nominations, then the Globes, where I split the major awards by Drama and Comedy, followed by a few lists at the very end.  If there’s a film you expected to see and didn’t, check the very bottom – it might be eligible in a different year.  Films in red won the Oscar in that category.  Films in blue were nominated.  This is the last year of two of the strangest categories in Oscar history: Assistant Director and Dance Direction, neither of which do I use.

Nighthawk Awards:

  • Best Picture
  1. A Star is Born
  2. You Only Live Once
  3. The Awful Truth
  4. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
  5. The Lower Depths

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If your ex-wife gives you this look in these circumstances, odds are that she's not ready for the relationship to end.

If your ex-wife gives you this look in these circumstances, odds are that she’s not ready for the relationship to end.

My Top 6:

  1. The Awful Truth
  2. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
  3. The Lower Depths
  4. Stage Door
  5. Dead End
  6. Night Must Fall

Note:  This list has fluctuated while I was working on it.  It started with 8 films.  Two of them I re-watched and then dropped: Lost Horizon and Sabotage, the latter of which is a bit of a shame given the source material.  I also re-watched three films that weren’t on my list but are considered classics by some, though not by me: Make Way for Tomorrow, Topper and Nothing Sacred.  In the end, they all stayed in the *** range and their scripts didn’t make my list.  And even within the list things fluctuated – The Lower Depths went up enough that I had re-watched it before doing my 1936 Nighthawk Awards it would have gone up a spot in Best Foreign Film and it went up a few spots here.  So, this is my list and I am not sticking to it.

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I guarantee this scene in not in any of the Harry Potter films.

I guarantee this scene is not in any of the Harry Potter films.

Ah, the Harry Potter films.  The most successful film franchise in history, grossing in excess of $2 billion domestically and over $7.7 billion worldwide.  But there have been a lot of successful film franchises.  This isn’t just about how the films were successful – I’m not gonna write a post about the Twilight or Transformers films.  And it’s not just because I love the books – I love the Narnia books and I’m not gonna write a post about those films.  This is about a film series that I loved from the first and loved to the end and will always love.  It’s about a film franchise that, like Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings, took books that are very dear to my heart and brought them to the screen with absolute magnificence.

This post isn’t about the books.  I already wrote that post in my For Love of Books series and you can read it here.  This is about the films.  Because I love film and I love what they did with this series.  So, here is my third installment in my For Love of Film Series (following Hammer Horror and The Ealing Comedies). (more…)

Hey!  You!

Hey! You!

You can read more about this year in film here.  The Best Picture race is discussed here, with reviews of all the nominees.  First there are the categories, followed by all the films with their nominations, then the Globes, where I split the major awards by Drama and Comedy, followed by a few lists at the very end.  If there’s a film you expected to see and didn’t, check the very bottom – it might be eligible in a different year.  Films in red won the Oscar in that category.  Films in blue were nominated.  This year marks the addition of the supporting acting categories; there are 16 categories overall, though two of them (Assistant Director, Dance Direction) aren’t categories I include.

Nighthawk Awards:

  • Best Picture
  1. Modern Times
  2. The Petrified Forest
  3. Mr. Deeds Goes to Town
  4. My Man Godfrey
  5. A Tale of Two Cities

(more…)

DUKE (to those remaining): You'd better stay where you are for a while.  Good night, folks.

DUKE (to those remaining): You’d better stay where you are for a while. Good night, folks.

My Top 7:

  1. The Petrified Forest
  2. Mr. Deeds Goes to Town
  3. My Man Godfrey
  4. A Tale of Two Cities
  5. Dodsworth
  6. After the Thin Man

Note:  The Petrified Forest would have won in 1935 but Deeds would have been in 5th place.  Notice there are also only 6 rather than 10 because there just isn’t as loaded a list of qualities scripts in 1936 (1937 won’t be any better).  I originally had Hitchcock’s Secret Agent here, but after rewatching it, it got bumped off the list.  Though, to be fair, this is a better list than you’ll find in Best Original Screenplay for 1936, where I can’t even manage to find a full slate of nominees.

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