Obviously Losing

Location: Los Angeles, California

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Wicker Man

Here are some scenes from "The Wicker Man" remake. This has got to be a movie that's so damn awful it's hilarious.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Great Music Videos - "Glósóli"

Artist: Sigur Rós
Song: Glósóli
Directors: Arni & Kinski

Monday, January 29, 2007

Great Music Videos - "Right Here, Right Now"

Artist: Fatboy Slim
Song: Right Here, Right Now
Director: Garth Jennings

Sunday, January 28, 2007

"Little Miss Sunshine" for the Win?

"Little Miss Sunshine" just won Best Ensemble at the Screen Actors Guild Awards, which is taking place just down the street. "Crash" won the same award last year, and we all know what happened after that.

So will "Little Miss Sunshine" win the Best Picture Oscar? A lot of prognosticators are claiming so. It's a film that's loved by nearly everyone, and the Academy often votes with their hearts instead of their minds.

But "Sunshine" is missing Director and Editing nominations - two categories that are normally required to pull of the Best Pic win. Both "Babel" and "The Departed" have those noms, so I really think it's a three-way race at this point. "The Queen," marvelous film that it is, seems too slight to win the big prize, and "Letters from Iwo Jima" is just lucky to be nominated.

So "Little Miss Sunshine" vs. "Babel" vs. "The Departed." I honestly have no clue (and anyone who says they are confident about what will win is lying), but point a gun to my head and I'd go with "The Departed" for now.

But as they say in Hollywood, nobody knows anything.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Great Music Videos - "Star Guitar"

I thought it would be fun to start posting my favorite music videos every now and then. I have at least 30 or so in mind.

Here's our first entry...

Artist: The Chemical Brothers
Song: Star Guitar
Director: Michel Gondry

And a neat "making of" video:

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Oscars, Good Work

This year's Academy Award nominations were, for the most part, extremely well chosen. Here's why:

1. "Dreamgirls" missing out on Best Picture, Director, and Screenplay shows the Academy actually watched the film and decided to go against the manufactured hype. "Dreamgirls" had no right even being considered a Best Pic contender, and having "Letters from Iwo Jima" in the lineup instead gives the Academy a boost in credibility.

2. Paul Greengrass getting a Director nod for "United 93" was a classy way to honor the film. Granted, it deserved much more, but at least the man responsible for constructing this harrowing masterpiece got his due.

3. "Pan's Labyrinth," which was my favorite film of the year, surpassed all my expectations with its 6 nominations. I am particularly happy its haunting music got nominated (you can listen to the entire score here). If the movie was released just a few weeks earlier, I think you would have seen noms for Best Picture & Director too. People clearly love this film (it has already climbed to #90 at IMDb). I think "Pan's Labyrinth" can easily walk away with three wins (foreign-language film, score, and makeup).

4. Jack Nicholson's bloated performance in "The Departed" got rightfully ignored.

5. "Borat" got a much-deserved Adapted Screenplay nomination, and I think it has a shot at winning the category too.

6. "The Prestige" earned Art Direction and Cinematography nominations, which is two more noms than I thought it would get.

7. Also, you got to love how ethnically diverse the acting nominations are - a record 5 African-Americans, 2 Latinas, 1 Japanese actress, and a load of Brits.

8. The Best Picture race is now wide open. I think it's "Babel" vs. "The Departed," but "Letters from Iwo Jima" and "Little Miss Sunshine" are clearly competitors too. This all makes for a much more exciting Academy Awards broadcast.

Oscars, you did well.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Oscar Nominations

No Dreamgirls!!! Horray!

And Borat for screenplay! Pan's Labyrinth and Children of Men for screenplay! Paul Greengrass for director!

And Pan's Labyrinth got a whopping SIX nominations! YES!!!

Ok, back to bed.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Oscar Wishes

My final Oscar predictions are below, but here are a few feasible things I hope will happen when the nominations are announced tomorrow morning:

1. "United 93" is nominated for Best Picture
2. Paul Greengrass, Guillermo del Toro, or Alfonso Cuaron is nominated for Best Director over the more likely Clint Eastwood.
3. Or even better, Bill Condon isn't nominated for Best Director at all.
4. Sacha Baron Cohen makes it into the Best Actor final five.
5. Both of the "Babel" supporting actresses (Rinko Kikuchi & Adriana Barazza) are nominated.
6. "Pan's Labyrinth" and "United 93" are nominated for Best Original Screenplay.
7. "Children of Men" and "Thank You For Smoking" get Adapted Screenplay nods.
8. Or even better, "Borat" also gets an Adapted Screenplay nod.
9. "Pan's Labyrinth" shows up in the Art Direction, Cinematography, and Makeup categories.
10. "O Kazakhstan" receives a Best Song nomination.

I think #4, #5, #7, and #9 will happen.

Final Oscar Predictions

Best Picture
1. The Departed
2. Dreamgirls
3. Little Miss Sunshine
4. Babel
5. The Queen
6. Letters from Iwo Jima
7. United 93

Best Director
1. Martin Scorsese, The Departed
2. Bill Condon, Dreamgirls
3. Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Babel
4. Stephen Frears, The Queen
5. Clint Eastwood, Letters from Iwo Jima
6. Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, Little Miss Sunshine
7. Paul Greengrass, United 93
8. Guillermo del Toro, Pan's Labyrinth
9. Alfonso Cuaron, Children of Men

Best Actor
1. Forest Whitaker, The Last King of Scotland
2. Peter O'Toole, Venus
3. Will Smith, The Pursuit of Happyness
4. Leonardo DiCaprio, The Departed
5. Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat
6. Ryan Gosling, Half Nelson
7. Leonardo DiCaprio, Blood Diamond
8. Ken Watanabe, Letters from Iwo Jima

Best Actress
1. Helen Mirren, The Queen
2. Judi Dench, Notes on a Scandal
3. Meryl Streep, The Devil Wears Prada
4. Penelope Cruz, Volver
5. Kate Winslet, Little Children
6. Beyonce Knowles, Dreamgirls
7. Naomi Watts, The Painted Veil

Best Supporting Actor
1. Eddie Murphy, Dreamgirls
2. Jack Nicholson, The Departed
3. Alan Arkin, Little Miss Sunshine
4. Djimon Hounsou, Blood Diamond
5. Jackie Earle Haley, Little Children
6. Brad Pitt, Babel
7. Michael Sheen, The Queen
8. Mark Wahlberg, The Departed

Best Supporting Actress
1. Jennifer Hudson, Dreamgirls
2. Cate Blanchett, Notes on a Scandal
3. Abigail Breslin, Little Miss Sunshine
4. Rinko Kikuchi, Babel
5. Adriana Barraza, Babel
6. Emily Blunt, The Devil Wears Prada
7. Catherine O'Hara, For Your Consideration
8. Toni Collette, Little Miss Sunshine

Saturday, January 20, 2007

INOCA Nominations

INOCA is a fun little group of film lovers that I belong to, and I'm very proud our award nominations this year.

Children of Men
The Departed
Little Children
United 93

Pedro Almodovar for Volver
Alfonso Cuaron for Children of Men
Guillermo Del Toro for Pan's Labyrinth
Paul Greengrass for United 93
Martin Scorsese for The Departed

Sacha Baron Cohen in Borat
Leonardo DiCaprio in The Departed
Ryan Gosling in Half Nelson
Forest Whitaker in The Last King of Scotland
Ray Winstone in The Proposition

Penelope Cruz in Volver
Judi Dench in Notes on a Scandal
Helen Mirren in The Queen
Naomi Watts in The Painted Veil
Kate Winslet in Little Children

Steve Carrell in Little Miss Sunshine
Jackie Earle Haley in Little Children
Jack Nicholson in The Departed
Michael Sheen in The Queen
Mark Wahlberg in The Departed

Cate Blanchett in Notes on a Scandal
Emily Blunt in The Devil Wears Prada
Jennifer Hudson in Dreamgirls
Rinko Kikuchi in Babel
Carmen Maura in Volver
Emily Watson in The Proposition

The Departed
Little Miss Sunshine
A Prairie Home Companion
United 93

Letters from Iwo Jima
Pan's Labyrinth

A Scanner Darkly
Happy Feet

Little Miss Sunshine
Pan's Labyrinth
The Queen
United 93

Children of Men
The Departed
Little Children
Notes on a Scandal
Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story

Children of Men
Marie Antoinette
Pan's Labyrinth
The Proposition

Casino Royale
Children of Men
The Departed
United 93

Children of Men
Marie Antoinette
The Painted Veil
Pan's Labyrinth
The Prestige
The Proposition

Curse of the Golden Flower
The Devil Wears Prada
Marie Antoinette

The Fountain
The Illusionist
The Painted Veil
The Queen

Borat, "O Kazakhstan"
Casino Royale, "You Know My Name"
Dreamgirls, "Listen"
An Inconvenient Truth, "I Need To Wake Up"
A Prairie Home Companion, "Goodbye To My Mama"

Casino Royale
Children of Men
The Departed
United 93

Casino Royale
Children of Men
The Departed
United 93

Children of Men
The Fountain
Pan's Labyrinth
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
Superman Returns

The Descent
Marie Antoinette
Pan's Labyrinth
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


It snowed in Los Angeles today for the first time since 1962. Weird.

My Personal Oscar Ballot

Before I take a final stab at predicting the Oscar nominations, which are announced on Tuesday, here is the ballot I would submit if I were an actual voter. I'll limit it to the eight main categories.

Best Picture
Pan's Labyrinth
The Prestige
United 93

Best Director
Alfonso Cuaron, Children of Men
Guillermo del Toro, Pan's Labyrinth
Paul Greengrass, United 93
Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, Babel
Christopher Nolan, The Prestige

Best Actor
Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat
Aaron Eckhart, Thank You for Smoking
Ryan Gosling, Half Nelson
Clive Owen, Children of Men
Forest Whitaker, The Last King of Scotland

Best Actress
Ivana Baquero, Pan's Labyrinth
Penelope Cruz, Volver
Judi Dench, Notes on a Scandal
Helen Mirren, The Queen
Kate Winslet, Little Children

Best Supporting Actor
Ben Affleck, Hollywoodland
Robert Downey Jr., A Scanner Darkly
Kazunari Ninomiya, Letters from Iwo Jima
Brad Pitt, Babel
Michael Sheen, The Queen

Best Supporting Actress
Adriana Barraza, Babel
Cate Blanchett, Notes on a Scandal
Jennifer Hudson, Dreamgirls
Rinko Kikuchi, Babel
Phyllis Somerville, Little Children

Best Original Screenplay
Letters from Iwo Jima
Pan's Labyrinth
The Queen
United 93

Best Adapted Screenplay
Notes on a Scandal
The Prestige
Thank You for Smoking
Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Golden Globes

I was going to list predictions for every category, but I just don't have enough interest in the Golden Globes this year.

There are a few things I am hoping will happen though:

1. "Babel" winning Best Picture (Drama).
2. "Borat" or "Little Miss Sunshine" upsetting "Dreamgirls" in the Best Picture (Musical/Comedy) category.
3. "Pan's Labyrinth" beating "Letters from Iwo Jima" in the Foreign Language Film category.

And I can't wait to hear Sacha Baron Cohen's acceptance speech.

Bloc Party - I Still Remember

Thanks to Conor for pointing out the new Bloc Party video.

And how interesting that the first U.S. single off their upcoming album would be about a crush between two schoolboys.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Daily Trojan article

My "Top 10 Films of 2006" article for the Daily Trojan is here.

Apologies to Alejandro González Iñárritu and Alfonso Cuarón - for some reason the DT website cannot handle accents and tildes.

The Departed: The Abridged Script

An entertaining parody script of "The Departed" can be read here.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Top 10 Films of 2006

Pan's Labyrinth
United 93
The Prestige
Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
Children of Men
The Queen
Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story
Thank You for Smoking
Notes on a Scandal

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Pan's Labyrinth

I had my #1 film of the year selection all ready to go, and then "Pan's Labyrinth" came along and ruined everything. Guillermo del Toro has fashioned a true cinematic beauty here - a movie that flows effortlessly from its first artistic frame to its simultaneously heartbreaking and transcendent conclusion. What an achievement.

Picking 2006's best film just got really tough.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

$75 Million House

No, not excessive at all...

Monday, January 01, 2007