In Contention

Come join us at HitFix!

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 12:30 pm · September 20th, 2011

We have officially relocated to our new home at HitFix. So come on over to the new URL — hitfix.com/incontention — and join the on-going goings-on. All of yesterday’s material is backdated there and patiently awaits, so feel free to continue the discussion there. If you’re thinking to yourself right now, “Wait, huh?,” then fear [...]

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OFF THE CARPET: The great, appreciated unknown

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 5:47 pm · September 19th, 2011

As we move out of the Toronto fray, Venice and Telluride already a memory, we look to the season ahead. The starting gun echo of those three early fall festivals is beginning to fade away, and with the dust settled or settling, it’s interesting to note the lack of an inarguable emerging player. In fact, [...]

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Filed in: Off the Carpet

Alfredon’s ‘Tinker, Tailor’ smolders on screen

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 5:23 pm · September 19th, 2011

I don’t want to write too much about “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” right now because, point blank, I want to see it again and digest and — gasp! — consider. For now, though, I’ll start with this: It’s an impeccably made, satisfyingly dense piece of work from director Tomas Alfredson. It’s the rare film that [...]

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Filed in: Daily · Reviews

‘J. Edgar’ trailer

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 5:07 pm · September 19th, 2011

One of the great unknowns of the season (as I’ll get into momentarily with today’s Off the Carpet column) is Clint Eastwood’s “J. Edgar.” Well today, we finally get a glimpse of the film via the trailer at Apple. The first thing of note, naturally, is Leonardo DiCaprio’s accent, which seems to come in and [...]

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9/19 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Toronto Oscar bounces, threads in ‘Drive,’ adaptng le Carre

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 8:54 am · September 19th, 2011

• Anne Thompson talks “Rampart” with writer/director Oren Moverman. [Thompson on Hollywood] • Greg Ellwood ponders who got an Oscar bounce out of Toronto. [Awards Campaign] • Simon Kinnear on the clothing designs of “Drive.” [Clothes on Film]

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Lebanese foreign film submission ‘Where Do We Go Now?’ wins Toronto’s People’s Choice Award

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 11:24 am · September 18th, 2011

I can’t say I’m all that aware yet of Nadine Labaki’s “Where Do We Go Now?,” which Guy recently called “a serious-minded comedy with musical elements that premiered to warm reviews in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard section, where it earned a special mention from the Ecumenical Jury.” But the film has swooped in and nabbed [...]

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BOX OFFICE: ‘Lion’ roars at the top

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 9:21 am · September 18th, 2011

Disney found a somewhat soft spot for children’s films in the 2011 schedule to slot “The Lion King 3D,” and they came away with a healthy #1 take this weekend. Assuming you’re okay with that being added to the film’s already impressive overall take from the summer of 1994, it leap-frogs “Finding Nemo” to become [...]

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Filed in: Box Office

CINEJABBER: Just enjoy the show

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 3:15 pm · September 17th, 2011

So, it’s been a big week of announcements here at In Contention, and next week, a bigger week of changes. The current plan is to have the new digs off the ground on Tuesday, so we’ll have Monday to say our goodbyes. But it occurred to me I haven’t offered up a Cinejabber space for [...]

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Filed in: Cinejabber

Tell us what you thought of ‘Straw Dogs’

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 10:51 am · September 16th, 2011

One last solicitation for thoughts today, on Rod Lurie’s “Straw Dogs” remake. I already offered my receptive opinion of the film, but I’m curious what everyone else has to say. So cut loose with your thoughts when/if you get around to it this weekend.

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Filed in: Daily

Tell us what you thought of ‘Drive’

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 10:06 am · September 16th, 2011

Lots has been written and spoken about “Drive” around these parts. Guy fell in love in Cannes. I hopped on board at Comic-Con. And now, it’s your turn to weigh in. The film opens nationwide today, and I imagine it’ll be a big priority for many of you. Come on back here when you get [...]

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OSCAR TALK: Ep. 61 — Wrapping up Toronto, ‘Moneyball’ and Brad Pitt’s Oscar positioning, Roland Emmerich’s ‘Anonymous,’ ‘Rampart’ and turning out the lights

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 8:53 am · September 16th, 2011

Welcome to Oscar Talk. In case you’re new to the site and/or the podcast, Oscar Talk is a weekly kudocast, your one-stop awards chat shop between yours truly and Anne Thompson of Thompson on Hollywood. The podcast is weekly, every Friday throughout the season, charting the ups and downs of contenders along the way. Plenty [...]

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Filed in: Oscar Talk

You have to care

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 8:43 am · September 16th, 2011

Speaking of “Drive,” I just read through Roger Ebert’s review and this pull quote stuck out to me as particularly cogent: The key thing you want to feel, during a chase scene, is involvement in the purpose of the chase. You have to care. Too often we’re simply witnessing technology.

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Albert Brooks talks ‘Drive’

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 8:35 am · September 16th, 2011

The great Albert Brooks took playful Twitter umbrage with my yanking him from the predicted five supporting actor contenders recently. I assure you (and him) that it’s a lack of faith in the Academy, which would enter uber-cool territory by giving him (or anything) a nod for this film, not a lack of faith in [...]

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Tell us what you thought of ‘The Lion King 3D’

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 8:00 am · September 16th, 2011

I don’t know if many of you are planning on taking in “The Lion King 3D,” a converted version of the 1994 animated classic that will be in theaters for a few weeks in advance of the film’s Blu-ray bow next month. But I figured I’d offer up a space for you to discuss it [...]

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9/16 OSCARWEB ROUND-UP: Scientists vouch for ‘Contagion,’ Refn breaks down ‘Drive,’ Toronto takeaways

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 7:46 am · September 16th, 2011

• Scientists say “Contagion” is for real. [Associated Press] • James Rocchi talks “The Ides of March” with Best Supporting Actress hopeful Evan Rachel Wood. [MSN Movies] • Nicolas Winding Refn breaks down a scene from “Drive.” [Arts Beat]

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‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ trailer

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 4:26 pm · September 15th, 2011

John Madden’s latest, “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,” is set for release. Contrary to rumor, it will stay on its March 9, 2012 release date (especially now that Fox Searchlight has filled its awards boat), but it nevertheless looks like the sort of film that could be a lighthearted awards play next year if they [...]

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Gary Oldman writes up Coppola across the pond

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 12:10 pm · September 15th, 2011

Here’s a nice change of pace. On the occasion of the UK opening of “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy,” London’s Telegraph newspaper has commissioned actor Gary Oldman for his thoughts on director Francis Ford Coppola. It’s kind of random, though. Yeah, Oldman starred in Coppola’s 1992 film “Bram Stoker’s Dracula,” but there’s no real connection otherwise. [...]

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‘Barrymore’ trailer

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 9:40 am · September 15th, 2011

It’s been a bit slow on the whole for acquisitions at Toronto, but one film I’ve kept an eye on is “Barrymore” (which we pointed to over the weekend as a potential Oscar play for Christopher Plummer). It absolutely seems like a powerhouse performance, but man, it’ll be hard to sell a one-man show. I [...]

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Filed in: Daily