Picture Perfect Power Rankings: Is There Still Time for a Shake-up?

As we approach the very end of 2016, all of the films in serious contention for the Best Picture Oscar have been released, limited or otherwise. While I haven’t seen a few entries in this month’s top ten — owing to disinterest or a lack of access — the narratives for all of their nominations is really starting to take shape. Here we go for the final top 10 of 2016.

Read Article →

“La La Land” Sells Half the Dream: A Review

In an extremely roundabout way, this is where I’ve come to with director Damien Chazelle and his new film La La Land. It too is filled to burst with passion, expressing as it does a love for things from a bygone era. It’s clear Chazelle cares a great deal about the subject matter and wants very much to tell you about it. Despite his earnest belief in the film, I’m not sure that’s enough of a reason to care.

Read Article →

“Cameraperson” as Film of the Year

There’s a brief scene somewhere in Cameraperson where a wild-eyed, bespectacled astrophysicist explains quantum entanglements. The basics of it are fairly simple: consider two linked particles; now move one far away. Experiments performed on the nearby particle can and will eventually be felt by the distant other — it’ll just take light years for the effects to reach it. We know the particles are entangled, in space and time, but the mystery — to astrophysicists and us — is understanding why and how this happens the way it does.

Read Article →

Picture Perfect Power Rankings: The Oscar Status Quo

Owing to this solidification (calcification?) of this year’s Oscar story, we’ve become increasingly locked into our top ten. There are no drop outs this week (though the idea of Sully still puts me to sleep) but there was some jostling on the list. As we enter December, and the final 30 days of the Oscar contention season, this is not nothing. Here are this month’s Picture Perfect Power Rankings. Time to get serious with the status quo.

Read Article →

The More It Comes Down: A “Manchester by the Sea” Review

There’s no real way to set a film based around grief in a tropical location. Sure, people in warm climates deal with death and sadness too, but cognitively, visually, there’s nothing quite like the cold to drive misery home. So it is in Manchester by the Sea, the delicate and powerful new film from Kenneth Lonergan. The film’s opening images are a montage of winter scenery, and of Casey Affleck’s Lee Chandler as he handles various building management duties in Quincy, Massachusetts — tossing out garbage, changing light bulbs, and shovelling snow. The snow is ever-present in Manchester by the Sea, obscuring, coating, and, in its way, marking the time. The snow sets the tone.

Read Article →

The Grant Rant: Encarnaci-gone

Edwin wants a five year deal, which would take him through his age 38 season with Toronto. While he was something of a late bloomer, he’ll already be 34 years old when next season begins. That’s not ‘aging’, it’s old already! It’s a real factor, and is something that could quickly become a slippery slope. Many fans shrug this off, explaining how these deals are less risky now because more and more players are productive as they get older these days. That’s just not true.

Read Article →