Oscar Finds a Famous Home

 “Fame you’ll be famous, as famous as can be, with everyone watching you win on TV, Except when they don’t because sometimes they won’t.” Dr. Seuss

An audience of 40.4 million watched the live telecast of the 85th Academy Awards, catching a glimpse of the infamous in all their celebrated glory. The happy winners and gracious losers have left the Dolby Theater as Oscar heads straight for the mantles of his new owners.

The producers of this year’s Best Picture, “Argo” were the last winners to stroll off the stage with the most popular guy in the house as Ben Affleck faced the task of finding him a politically correct location far from the glare of Hollywood lights and Iranian guards.

Now two-time Academy Award Winning Director Ang Lee took a golden sail, and an unexpected win, loving the “Life of Pi.”

Best Actor Daniel Day-Lewis thanked “Lincoln,” our 16th American president, promising to shelter his third bronzed beauty from murder-on-their minds actors.

Best Actress Jennifer Lawrence is sure to display her bright and shiny guy in a sunny spot within view of her “Silver Linings Playbook.”

“Django (finally) Unchained” Oscar, freeing him into the hands of Best Supporting Actor Christoph Waltz, who danced the night away with his newfound companion. Best Supporting Actress Ann Hathaway is far from one of  “Les Miserable” as she sings a much-happier tune to the new, golden boy in her life.

Speaking of tunes, Adele added Oscar winner to her many accomplishments, winning for Original Song with “Skyfall.” “Life of Pi’s” Mychael Danna also had a song in his heart as he collected his Oscar for Best Original Score .

Much “Amour” was shown to this year’s Best Foreign Language Film. A “Brave” animated feature became a bold new winner. Quentin Tarantino claimed another win for Original Screenplay for “Django Unchained” as “Argo’s” Chris Terrio found Hollywood and politics do mix when he accepted his prize for Adapted Screenplay.

As the show of all shows ended a mere three and a half hours later (but who’s counting), the next act, filled no doubt with winning performances, has thankfully already begun in the land of movies…



Movie Talk Ain’t Cheap

Last week’s box-office results remind me of Mark Twain, who once said, “Action speaks louder than words but not nearly as often.” Now I know he wasn’t referring to the world of movies when he uttered that often used sentiment, but they certainly apply to our action-packed movie world. After all, an action film claimed the coveted #1 spot at the box office last week when Bruce Willis turned an otherwise romantic weekend into A Good Day to Die Hard.

Who’s talking the loudest this week?

The box office has spoken, and a thief and a snitch are shouting while A Good Day is Dying Hard. Stealing the #1 spot is the still-popular Identity Thief with $14.1 million. The newly-released Snitch walked off to the corner of #2 with $13.0 million. The animated Escape from Planet Earth took flight at #3 with $11 million. The Nicholas Sparks adaptation Safe Haven dipped dangerously to #4 with $10.6 million. So, where is John McClane? He was eventually found far from last week’s top spot, landing A Good Day to Die Hard at #5 with $10.0 million.

Ticket sales seem to be saying what moviegoers really want (at least this weekend) is a comedic show stealer offering a safe place for action and animation within a darkened movie theater leading to a bright and profitably sunny day.

From seaside days to starry nights, may your movie trip into darkness lead to the brightest light…


An Illuminating Weekend at the Movies

Is the weekend here already? With Oscar in town, Cupid, complete with bow and arrow, has left the (cinema) building, as movies of the non-romantic kind come out to compete with last week’s charmers. Will a Safe Haven remain safely in the coveted Top Five at the Box Office now that the little round guy with the perfect aim is no longer around to spread the love? A Good Day to Die Hard and Escape from Planet Earth are covering the cinema ground for action-oriented adults and animated-loving kids, so what’s left for the rest of our players?

A few brave souls have stomped onto the movie turf this weekend, intent to leave their entertaining mark. Josh Hamilton and Keri Russell are living under terrifyingly Dark Skies, looking for the light at the end of the box-office tunnel. Dwayne Johnson, meanwhile, is the coolest Snitch in town, hoping to steal the stage from the crowd-pleasing Identity Thief.

Will our new films light up the box office landscape or quickly fade toward early DVD release?

No worries; because wherever our eclectic cast lands once the cash is counted, the stars are always shining at your local movie theater.

From seaside days to starry nights, may your weekend shine…

The Magic Managers

Francis Ford Coppola once said, “I think cinema, movies, and magic have always been closely associated. The very earliest people who made films were magicians.”

Would our contestants for this year’s Academy Award Winning Director agree with that assessment? Ang Lee, who previously won for 2005’s Brokeback Mountain, found a magical world adrift in the Life of Pi, where a full-grown tiger and the sea served as the supreme guide. First-time nominee Benh Zeitlin had to calm the Beasts of the Southern Wild on Louisiana’s terra firma with the help of a wise-beyond-her-years child. Previous Oscar nominee Michael Haneke, meanwhile, found true Amour beyond the barriers of age and illness in a Parisian apartment. What can we say about Steven Spielberg and his 15 Oscar nominations? Even the late, great Lincoln himself would be impressed with all Spielberg has accomplished! Finally, there’s David O. Russell, nominated in 2011 for The Fighter. In the Silver Linings Playbook, he brilliantly tackled mental health, the complexities of family, football mania and ballroom dancing!

What magical stories are left to be guided by Hollywood’s most celebrated tour guides? Is there any challenge they can’t master?

Howard Hawks once remarked, “I’m a storyteller-that’s the chief function of a director. And they’re moving pictures, lets make ‘em move!”

Thankfully, our list of nominated directors told their stories at lightening speed and we are better to have been along for the ride.

Tune in February 24th for the ultimate Hollywood ride…

A Cinematic Valentine for Everyone

Cupid came to town this weekend, pointing his arrow straight at movie lovers’ hearts. Inspired by his razor-sharp aim, several starry-eyed stories entered the box-office playing field, determined to (in a loving way) take down the zombie’s inhabiting Warm Bodies, steal the Identity Thief’s crown, and find out the secret to Hollywood success written in the Silver Linings Playbook.

Did the Beautiful Creatures find their box-office Safe Haven or a Good Day to Die Hard (from low ticket sales?)

The results are in and the beauties are relegated to the backseat while action drives the show. A Good Day to Die Hard found a good place to live, coming in at #1 with $25 million. The Identity Thief was still stealing the show, but from the slightly less-lucrative #2 locale with $23.4 million. A Safe Haven arrived safely (and profitably), securing the #3 abode with $21.4 million. Escape from Planet Earth brought families to movie theaters on this extended weekend, arriving back to Earth at #4 with $16.1 million. Finally, the Warm Bodies cooled off a bit at #5 with $9 million.

Thanks to this week’s stars, we found safety at our local movie theaters, adventure, animated charm, young love and the ever-popular pickpocket!

What will next week bring?

From seaside days to starry nights, may your week be filled with action, animation and never-ending entertainment…

All you Need is Movie Love

Paul McCartney believed, “Love is all you need.” With that in mind, our weekend at the movies is starting a bit early in honor of Valentine’s Day, which has inspired studio executives to roll out the romantic red carpet and show some cinema love. Leading off the love fest is the Beautiful Creatures, the latest addition to the paranormal teen angst genre hoping to wake the Twilight fans from their winter slumber. Next, Josh Duhamel offers Julianne Hough a Safe Haven, determined to make it safely to a top box-office spot. And what’s Valentine’s Day without a little action/adventure? Bruce Willis, both a lover and a fighter, is back once again, choosing Valentine’s Day as A Good Day to Die Hard. Also showing some animated love to the little ones is the family-friendly Escape from Planet Earth. Will our bevy of beauties entering the movie theaters this weekend pose a threat to our Identity Thief, last week’s #1? Will their tender-hearted ways chill the Warm Bodies? Most importantly, will John McClane ever actually die?

If love is all we need, we need look no farther than the local multiplex, where

Beautiful Creatures inhabiting Warm Bodies find their Safe Haven, as well as everyone’s favorite Identity Thief stealing hearts (and wallets). There is no need to Escape from Planet Earth, where Cupid is caught counting ticket sales, leaving moviegoers wondering if today is A Good Day to Die Hard, in the Hollywood sense, from all the love and big-screen excitement!

From seaside days to starry nights, hope Cupid brings lots of affection, entertainment and movie stars to your weekend…

Once Upon a Hollywood Time

Who doesn’t love a good story? F. Scott Fitzgerald once said, “Draw your chair up close to the edge of the precipice and I’ll tell you a story.” Thanks to this year’s Academy-Award-nominated storytellers, I couldn’t leave my aforementioned chair! Look at where their words have taken us this past cinematic year. We’ve traveled from Hollywood to Iran, visited a Louisiana swampland, set a tragic sail to Canada in a drifting lifeboat, lived through the Civil War and witnessed freedom for all slaves, including, on a different date, one by the name of Django. We’ve walked the Eagles-loving streets of Philadelphia, found true Amour at the end of a long life, took to the sky with an intoxicated pilot and headed toward the dark of night (and found Bin Laden).

While they can’t all collect an award, they can all revel in the well-deserved accolades.

In the category of Original Screenplay, we have Michael Haneke, who wrote about the ultimate test of Amour. Then there’s Quentin Tarantino, whose words gave freedom to Django Unchained. John Gatins’ dialogue took Denzel Washington to a toxic Flight while Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola’s story brought out the stars residing within the Moonrise Kingdom. Finally, Mark Boal created a script that illuminated Zero Dark Thirty. Which story was the most innovative?

In the category of Adapted Screenplay, Chris Terrio found the right blend of Hollywood and politics in Argo, Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin calmed the Beasts of the Southern Wild, David Magee made the Life of Pi sail in a turbulent world as Tony Kushner bequeathed Lincoln with a hard-won legacy. David O. Russell, meanwhile, found the fundamental rules in the Silver Linings Playbook, taking that story beyond the printed page. Who told the best rendition?

The next stop on our storytelling journey will be to the Dolby Theater on February 24th.

Hope you pull up to that imaginative abyss in the comfiest chair!