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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

81st ACADEMY AWARDS 2009Slumdig

By D.E.Levine

The Oscars were given out at this year's Academy Award ceremony amid old world glamour and elegant dress, despite a downward spiraling economy. Since everyone loves an underdog it was no surprise thaty Slumdog Millionaire took top honors for Best Film along with 7 other Oscars or a total of 8 Oscars.

Complete results were:

BEST PICTURE - 'Slumdog Millionaire'
BEST DIRECTOR - Danny Boyle for "Slumdog Millionaire'
BEST ACTRESS - KACHIEVEMENTate Winslet in 'The Reader'
BEST ACTOR - Sean Penn in 'Milk'
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS - Penelope Cruz in 'Vicky Christina Barcelona'
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR - Richard Jenkins in "The Visitor"
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY - Milk written by Dustin Lance Black
BEST ADAPTION - Slumdog Millionaire by Simon Beaufoy
BEST SCORE - Slumdog Millionaire by A.R. Rahman
BEST ORIGINAL SONG - Jai Ho from Slumdog Millionaire
BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM - 'Spielzeugland (Toyland)'
BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE - 'Man on A Wire'
BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT - 'Smile Pinki'
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM - 'Departures' (Japan)
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM - 'Wall-E'
BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM - 'La Maison en Petits Cubes'
ACHIEVEMENT IN FILM EDITING - Chris Dickens for 'Slumdog Millionaire'
ACHIEVEMENT IN SOUND EDITING - Richard King for 'The Dark Knight'
ACHIEVEMENT FOR SOUND MIXING - Ian Tapp, Richard Pryke, Resul Pookutty for
'Slumdog Millionaire'
ACHIEVEMENT FOR VISUAL EFFECTS - Eric Barb, Steve Dalton, Craig Barron for
'The Curious Case of Benjamin Button'
ACHIEVEMENT IN ART DIRECTION - 'The Curious Case of Benjamin Button'
ACHIEVEMENT IN CINEMATOGRAPHY - 'Anthony Dod Mantle' for 'Slumdog Millionaire'
ACHIEVEMENT IN COSTUME DESIGN - Michael O'Connor for 'The Duchess'

Sunday, February 22, 2009

2009 INDEPENDENT SPIRIT AWARDS 2009

By D.E.Levine

The 2009 Independent Spirit Awards were held Saturday, February 21, in a tent on the beach in Santa Monica, CA. The Spirit Awards honor films made by filmmakers who embody independence and who dare to challen ge the status quo.

This year's major category winners were:

BEST FEATURE: The Wrestler
BEST DIRECTOR: Tom McCarthy for The Visitor
BEST SCREENPLAY: Woody Allen for Vicky Cristina Barcelona
BEST FIRS FEATURE: Synecdoche, New York
BEST FIRST SCREENPLAY: Duston Lance Black for Milk
JOHN CASSAVETES AWARD: In Search of A Midnight Kiss (for the Best Feature made for under $500,000)
BEST SUPPORTING FEMALE: Penelope Cruz for Vicky Christina Barcelona
BEST SUPPORTING MALE: James Franco for Milk
BEST FEMALE LEAD: Melissa Leo for Frozen River
BEST MALE LEAD: Mickey Rourke for The Wrestler
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: Maryse Alberti for The Wrestler
BEST FOREIGN FILM: The Class (French)
BEST DOCUMENTARY: Man on Wire

Friday, February 20, 2009

SHERMAN'S WAY

By D.E.Levine

Written by: Tom Nance
Directed by: Craig M. Saavedra 2008
Produced by: Craig M. Saavedra, Michael Shulman, Tom Nance
Cast: Michael Shulman, James LeGros, Enrico Colantoni, Brooke Nevin, Donna Murphy, Thomas Ian Nicholas and Lacey Chabert
Rating: NR
Running Time: 97 Minutes

Sherman's Way is a warm, funny, feel good film that gets you to like it despite your resistance. Michael Shulman, as Sherman, a recent Yale Law School graduate is a mama's boy following mama's preplanned destiny for him. After what's probably the only impetuous act of his life, Sherman is stranded in California and needs a ride to a law internship in Beverly Hills. That's when he meets James LeGros, perfectly cast as a disgruntled former Olympic ski competitor named Palmer.

Although Palmer is immature and driving a stolen MGB roadster, his warmth and attitude towards life act as a cushion against Sherman's many neuroses. The warmth that Palmer exudes eventually melts Sherman's uptight attitude and results in a beautiful film. Cinematography done mainly in California wine country is also beautiful and easy to watch as the friendship develops, leaving Sherman a changed human being by the end of the trip.

Made in 2008 and released on the film festival circuit where it won several awards, the film opens in limited distribution in February 2009.

Monday, February 9, 2009

BAFTA ORANGE AWARDS 2009

By D.E.Levine

This BAFTA Awards were held in London on February 8, 2009. Some awards went to favorites while others were a surprise.

BEST FILM - 'Slumdog Millionaire' - Christian Colson
OUTSTANDING BRITISH FILM - 'Man On A Wire' - Simon Chinn, James Marsh
THE CARL FORMAN AWARD
SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT BY A BRITISH DIRECTOR, WRITER OR PRODUCER FOR THEIR FIRST FEATURE FILM - Steve McQueen (Director/Writer) for 'Hunger'
DIRECTOR - Danny Boyle for 'Slumdog Millionaire'
ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY - 'In Brugges' by Martin McDonagh
ADAPTED SCREENPLAY - 'Slumdog Millionaire' by Simon Beaufoy
FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE - 'I've Loved You So Long' - Yves Marmion, Philippe Claudel
ANIMATED FILM - 'Wall-E' - Andrew Stanton
LEADING ACTOR - Mickey Rourke in 'The Wrestler'
LEADING ACTRESS - Kate Winslet in 'The Reader'
SUPPORTING ACTOR - Heath Ledger in 'The Dark Knight'
SUPPORTING ACTRESS - Penelope Cruz in 'Vicky Christina Barcelona'
MUSIC - 'Slumdog Millionaire' - A.R.Rahman
CINEMATOGRAPHY - 'Slumdog Millionaire' - Anthony Dod Mantle