Academy Awards

“Deep Throat moved closer to Woodward. ‘Let me explain something,’ he said. ‘When you move on someone like Haldeman, you’ve got to be sure you’re on the most solid ground. Shit, what a royal screw-up!'” (p 220)

My Top 10:

  1. All the President’s Men
  2. Solyaris
  3. Carrie
  4. Voyage of the Damned
  5. The Outlaw Josey Wales
  6. The Shootist
  7. Marathon Man
  8. The Last Tycoon
  9. The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars and Motor Kings
  10. The Seven-Per-Cent Solution

Note:  There has been a change since my Nighthawk Awards, with The Shootist moving up into the Top 10.  If it seems like a big leap, that’s because #6-10 aren’t all that strong and in a good year many of them wouldn’t make the list.  The only two films on my list that aren’t in the Top 10 are both reviewed below because of nominations: Bound for Glory and Family Plot. (more…)


I honestly don’t know how much I will add here.  Time and money aren’t at high availability right now and I don’t know how much I’ll be able to see in the theater over the next month or so.  I’m struggling just to get some regular posts completed.  This definitely won’t have the kind of updates I did last year.  I will try to put things in here as they come up if I can.

But, I wanted to especially provide a forum for those who comment on the awards season so they have a place to put their comments and have a discussion so that they don’t have to throw them up among comments on other (less relevant posts).

At this point, I honestly haven’t quite decided my current #1 for the year between First Man, A Star is Born or BlacKkKlansman, all three of which are quite equal in my mind.  The only categories (of the 20) which I have a clear #1 at this point are Actress (Lady Gaga), Supporting Actress (Claire Foy), Song (“Shallow”) and Animated Film (Incredibles 2).

So, feel free to make any comments about anything for the awards season.  Most comments made during the day (PST) won’t post until I get home (late evening PST) but I will approve them. (more…)

Surprisingly enough, there are no Knights Who Say Ni in the original Malory. Neither is there a Black Knight who says “It’s only a flesh wound”, a witch being weighed against a duck, a holy hand grenade or a killer rabbit.

My Top 10

  1. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
  2. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
  3. Barry Lyndon
  4. The Man Who Would Be King
  5. Three Days of the Condor
  6. Jaws
  7. The Sunshine Boys
  8. Hester Street
  9. The Story of Adele H.
  10. The Day of the Locust

note:  Originally, Hester Street was reviewed as a WGA nominee.  But, my reaction to the film bumped it up the list and it displaced French Connection II (which still gets reviewed because it was also a WGA nominee).


A Century of Film

Columbia Pictures

The Studio

“Three men started it and they named it after themselves: C.B.C. Film Sales Company, for Jack Cohn, Joe Brandt and Jack’s younger brother, Harry Cohn.”  (Hail Columbia, Rochelle Larkin, p 11)  “The enterprise was growing in distinction, and hence it required a new name.  C.B.C. was now universally recognized in the trade by its sobriquet, Corned Beef and Cabbage.  A company could scarcely prosper under such a handicap.  On January 10, 1924, C.B.C. became Columbia Pictures.”  (King Cohn: The Life and Times of Harry Cohn, Bob Thomas, p 36)

“The movie business was divided into two unequal parts: The best film properties went to the major studios, the rest to the novices and dreamers on Poverty Row.  Harry Cohn was going to bridge that gap.”  (Larkin, p 12)  “Harry Cohn assumed the presidency of Columbia Pictures Corporation in 1932.  He retained his position as chief of production, becoming the only film company head to hold both positions.”  (Thomas, p 79) (more…)

This scene isn’t in the original novel even though it comes during the period of time covered by the novel. Nor is it ever mentioned in the novel that the Don’s birthday is December 7. This is pure Coppola.

My Top 10

  1. The Godfather Part II
  2. Young Frankenstein
  3. The Parallax View
  4. Murder on the Orient Express
  5. Lenny
  6. The Front Page
  7. The Taking of Pelham One Two Three
  8. The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz
  9. Thieves Like Us
  10. Sanshiro Sugata

Note:  If you look at my original Nighthawk Awards you will only see nine films listed.  But, re-watching The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, which I needed to review anyway because it was a WGA nominee, I was reminded that it should have been on my list in the first place because the script really is quite good. (more…)

A Century of Film


The Genre


“What about Film Noir?” Veronica asked me as I was talking about this category.  But, as I explained to her, Film Noir itself isn’t a genre, but a style that moves across multiple genres, usually Crime, Mystery and Suspense.  Crime films are easier to pull out because, as I explained in the Crime post, they are films in which the main character is a criminal.  It is a lot more difficult to draw a line between Crime films and Suspense films and you could easily take all of Mystery and make it a sub-section of Suspense films.  But I will try. (more…)

A Century of Film


Suspense Films

The Genre

What is a Suspense film, anyway?  What makes it different from other genres?  I think I first started thinking about that with the release of The Hunt for Red October.  It was still early in my days of being serious about films but I realized it was a bit unclassifiable.  It wasn’t an Action film.  There was too much suspense to be a Drama.  I got a film guide (called the Video Movie Guide – I had the 1990 edition and later gave that to my mother who still has it when I got the 1993 edition which I eventually got rid of, feeling I no longer needed it) not long afterwards that classified films by genre and had Action-Adventure-Thriller as one of them.  I realized that was where Hunt for Red October belonged.  But eventually I would decide that Mysteries really were their own sub-genre.

Almost all Mysteries could be pushed into this Genre which is why Mystery will be the next genre covered in this series (it was originally going to be first but it was easier to find a list of Mysteries and go through that than it was for Suspense, so I am watching a bunch more Mysteries before that post).  But Mysteries are tied up in a specific Mystery and solving that Mystery while Suspense is often more about the feeling in the film.  There is often a Mystery as well and I would not quibble with any person who keeps any of these films in Mystery.  A lot of them could also be classified as Action, but Action films, for the most part, focus more on the actual action and less on the feeling of suspense (for instance, most Spy films are here, but the Bond films are in Action).  Crime films could also be classified here (Crime films are often described as “crime thriller”). (more…)

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