People always ask you what you think when you’ve been to see a Tarantino movie. I think it’s because his movies a) have a strong directorial voice, and b) are the best marketed pseudo-arthouse movies out there. There are plenty of independent movies getting made, but they have neither the cachet, nor the name recognition of a Tarantino movie. So, what did I think? I think Tarantino has a strong directorial voice, and there’s a lot to like and plenty to dislike in pretty much any of his films. That’s not the cop-out it seems, Tarantino’s movies are less about
One thing the diversification of our entertainment ecosystem hasn’t changed, is that it’s still not OK to like things, if the internet says ‘no’. Despite Sisyphean resistance against some material, I’ve always thought it important to defend and not hide the fact that you enjoyed something. And for me that doesn’t stem from any particularly smug or contrarian standpoint, but rather that it’s fundamentally a human response, enjoyment. We don’t have any control over it, it just sort of happens – and in that sense it’s all we need to know about material at a base level. And we shouldn’t
I’ve always loved the Indiana Jones movies. Raiders was an early favourite, Temple of Doom was the first screenplay I ever read, and I’ve always been a fan of the father/son dynamic in Last Crusade. So I was thrilled to find a detailed analysis of the difference between Jeffrey Boam’s 1988 draft, and the final shooting script as polished by Tom Stoppard. For reference, here are links to Boam’s script and the final script of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. And, as a special bonus, the 1985 alternative story written by Chris Columbus.
Let me up front in saying, this list is incomplete, and will likely always remain so. Marvel may not have locked down their Phase 1 scripts much, but by Phase 2, scripts were impossible to get hold of. The only reason there are more for Phase 3 is that by that point Marvel had sufficient faith in their writers to start submitting them for Academy awards. But I wanted a complete list of all the movies, so I could plug the gaps when scripts appeared in the wild. Phase 1 FilmU.S. release dateDirectorScreenwriter(s)Iron ManMay 2, 2008Jon FavreauMark Fergus & Hawk Ostby and Art Marcum
When Steven Spielberg made comments last year about Netflix, deriding their movies as ‘TV Movies’, deserving of an Emmy rather than an Oscar, I called it a Cult of Cinema and discussed differences in nomenclature. But according to reports, one year on and Spielberg is doubling down on this: as the Academy Governor representing the directors branch of the Academy Awards, he is proposing a rules change that would favour cinemas and exclude Netflix’s so-called TV movies. Apparently he’s going to seek much wider theatrical releases to be eligible for an Oscar, a direct attack on the threat of Netflix
Updated: It’s here! It might have divided audiences, but there’s no denying that the 2018 “tribute to” the 1977 Italian film of the same title directed by Dario Argento, has made an impact. Starring Dakota Johnson and Tilda Swinton, there’s no denying the visuals in the stills are powerful, and many critics have declared it a must-see. It’s clearly been an influence, already being heavily referenced in The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. However, distributors MUBI have been slower to arrange UK distribution than the US has, where it’s available on physical and digital media already. But, as alluded to in the headline, I’ve
In honour of Olivia Colman winning the 2019 Best Actress Oscar, not to mention the much-sought after Best Oscar Speech 2019, I’ve decided to pull together as many of the scripts she’s been involved with as possible. The Favourite (2018) – Deborah Davis & Tony McNamara Murder on the Orient Express (2017) – Michael Green Broadchurch (2013-2017) – Chris Chibnall & Louise Fox – Sadly I can’t find a screenplay for this, but I’d love to read them Fleabag (2016) – Phoebe Waller-Bridge The Night Manager (2016) – David Farr Peep Show (2003-2015) – Jesse Armstrong & Sam Bain Locke
Bird Box was written by Eric Heisserer, based on the book of the same title by Josh Malerman. While Eric’s previous adaptation, Arrival was a stunning science fiction release from last year, Bird Box was a somewhat different affair, eschewing a wide cinema release for Netflix. Bird Box is a post-apocalyptic survival thriller, telling the story of a woman, played by Sandra Bullock, trying to survive with her children. It is the story of a parent trying to find the a way to protect her children from a world of terrors unseeable, that may only exist in the mind. The
What a year, since the last time I wrote a list like this! There have been left-field entries, surprisingly successful sequels, and some unique movies that have managed to be a commercial success! Now, sadly I’ve not been able to watch as many films as I’ve wanted this year, life just hasn’t worked out that way. Were I to try and follow Scott Myer’s 1-2-7-14 methodology, I should have managed to watch 104 movies this year. Sadly I only made it to a total of 29 movies I’d never seen before, a decrease on last year. As well as those films
I wrote about my most Anticipated Movies of 2018, and I thought it was time to revisit the list. Didn’t That Come Out Last Year? Not in the UK, sadly, otherwise I’d have seen them already. That’s the problem with Awards season, some of the best films end up straddling the New Year. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri – Martin McDonagh I saw it, it courted controversy for its ambiguous ending and portrayal of racism in small-town America, but I loved it. The Shape of Water – Guillermo Del Toro A beautiful fairytale, no wonder it swept the 2018 awards season.
Story of Your Life is a science fiction novella by American writer Ted Chiang, first published in Starlight 2 in 1998, and in 2002 in Chiang’s collection of short stories, Stories of Your Life and Others. It took 18 years from first publication for the novella to be highly acclaimed as the Denis Villeneuve’s movie Arrival. And in between those two events? In that space we had screenwriter Eric Heisserer, writing feverishly away. I loved Arrival, from the direction, to the theme, to the acting; but especially the screenplay. And in that regard we are very lucky that we have available
A thought struck me this morning, after RTing a One Perfect Shot image. https://twitter.com/oneperfectshot/status/1001297151467630592?s=21 I love Westerns, as problematic and outdated as they are and have seen so many. Even terrible ones, spin-offs, re-imagining, mashups, films that inspired the genre, and films that were inspired by the genre. And yet I’ve never written a Western, or anything that smells of a Western, or carries Western tropes. Noir and crime and thrillers and horror and science fiction and mysteries and urban fantasy; but never once a Western, or Western-inspired script. I just don’t know why. Movies like Once Upon A Time
It’s been all of a week since a major voice in films said anything controversial. Thankfully though, Spielberg’s “hot take” was not a point of horror, but one of cinematic philosophy. Should Netflix Originals, and other streaming movies, be counted as Oscar-worthy material? If they just barely scrape by the cinema showing rules to qualify, should they be counted as much as those films made specifically for a traditional cinema distribution? He said: “But in fact, once you commit to a television format, you’re a TV movie. You certainly, if it’s a good show, deserve an Emmy, but not an
I covered it briefly in my review of 2017 movies, but I do keep getting asked what movies I’m looking forward to in 2018. Partly so I don’t forget what’s coming up, I’ve expanded on the topic a little. Didn’t That Come Out Last Year? Not in the UK, sadly, otherwise I’d have seen them already. That’s the problem with Awards season, some of the best films end up straddling the New Year. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri – Martin McDonagh The Shape of Water – Guillermo Del Toro Lady Bird – Greta Gerwig. The Main List Untitled Chris Morris
What a year it’s been in the world of film! There have been left-field entries, surprises amongst tired franchises, successful sequels, and some unique movies that have managed to be a commercial success! Now, sadly I’ve not been able to watch as many films as I’ve wanted this year, life just hasn’t worked out that way. Were I to try and follow Scott Myer’s 1-2-7-14 methodology, I should have managed to watch 104 movies this year. Sadly I only made it to a total of 36 movies I’d never seen before, ranging from films released in 1995 (Copycat), to this