Back in August, a film came to my attention from the director and star of the OSS 117 films (which I will review on a later date) simply called The Artist. At that point, it had just won the award for Best Actor at the Cannes Film Festival and been nominated for the coveted Palm d’Or, which it lost to filmmaker Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life. Since then, however, it has garnered universal acclaim, tallied up a number of awards, and been nominated for multiple Academy Awards. Pretty good for a silent film.
That’s right. The Artist is a silent film, it even plays like a old film in the boxed, 4:3 format instead of widescreen. Certain cinemas in the UK have actually had to give reimbursements because audience members did not realize that it was a silent, black and white film. I’m certain that those who have stayed for the entire feature are glad they did.
The centerpiece of the film is George Valentin (Jean Dujardin), who is a film star in the golden age of Hollywood. The film starts us at the premiere of George’s latest success, The Russian Affair, where a chance encounter with aspiring actress Peppy Miller (Bérénice Bejo) is just the beginning of what’s coming. What is coming? Sound! Films that feature people actually talking. George laughs this off as a phase initially; but slowly, he begins to realize that he is in the minority, and as he begins to disappear, a new wave of Hollywood stars begin to rise, including the young Peppy Miller.
Read the rest of the review after the break. (more…)
If you have been on the internet at all in the last 12 hours, you may have seen that the Oscar nominations were announced today. A lot of you may not care. I had a number of friends already update their social statuses to basically say, “so what?” If you are one of them, this post is probably not for you.
This post is going to essentially be a list of all the nominees that are up for an Oscar, the most prestigious of awards a film can earn. A couple of the films are linked back to some older posts on TOC which highlighted them. This was done specifically for The Artist (nominated for Best Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actress, Original Screenplay, Art Direction, Costume Design, Film Editing, and Original Score) and The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore (nominated for Best Animated Short Film). Click the film’s title to jump to those posts.
Best Actor In a Supporting Role
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Best Actor in a Leading Role
Best Actress in a Leading Role
See the rest of the nominees after the break. (more…)
I don’t own an iPad. I hope to soon. It would be a lot easier to keep up with blogging and social stuff on the road and just in general, but right now – no such luck. Here’s hoping to owning one someday;)
But still…I find out about some awesome apps (just for the iPad) that are amazingly done and very unique…which makes it just that much more hard.
Bobby, from The Fox Is Black, posted today about a specific app called “The Fantastic Flying Books Of Mr. Morris Lessmore.” It’s stuff like this that makes me excited about new technology and the future of storytelling.
The Fantastic Flying Books Of Mr. Morris Lessmore, made by Moonbot Studios, is based off a short film of the same name. Instead of just words and pictures…it has you interacting with what is going on inside the book.
From the website:
Put yourself in Morris’ shoes as you dive into the story of Mr. Lessmore and his flying friends through Moonbot Studios’ first Interactive Storybook. In this reinvention of digital storytelling you can repair books, tumble through a storm, learn the piano and even get “lost in a book,” flying through a magical world of words, giving you a dynamic journey through the story. This iPad App has been touted by Apple as one of the “Top New Apps for the iPad,” and will surely be enjoyed by children and adults alike. Using rich CG animation, innovative interactivity, original composed music, and unique games sprinkled throughout the book, this App will revive a love of story in all.
I’ve learned from Jonathan Harris that there is never a shortage of ways to tell a story. And then to add more of your senses to the mix – is one of the best ways to keep story telling up on its game. Watch the trailer below and see exactly what I mean then click ahead to see tons of behind-the-scenes stills, artwork and video, as well as the full film after the break.
Click ahead for behind the scenes footage, artwork, and the Oscar-winning film in its entirety…really inspiring stuff…
How would you react if I told you that just by glancing at this post, you had unknowingly seen an entire movie?
What if I told you that movie was the classic film The Wizard of Oz?
The picture you see above, which looks like an abstract watercolor painting, is in fact every frame of The Wizard of Oz, stretched out and put side by side until all that remains are the colors. This is what has become called a “Movie Barcode.”
Examine the above “barcode” again. You can now pick out the brilliant green of the Emerald City, the bright yellow brick road, the muted browns of the sepia-tinted opening and ending of the film, and even the dark blues and grays of the Witch’s Castle.
This study, of sorts, in chromatic design, is a perfect example of how colors can be used in films with great effect.
See if you can guess some of the movies after the jump. (more…)
A few months ago, we found a video about the sound design of Tron: Legacy via Michael Coleman on Vimeo. With the Oscars approaching rapidly (tomorrow actually), I stumbled back across his page and found a plethora of videos dedicated to the creation of the sounds and music for most of the Best Picture category nominees. Most of these videos are less than 10 minutes, but some do get a bit lengthy as they are interview/panel/discussion based.
If sound doesn’t strike you as very interesting, check out some of our older posts featuring more behind-the- scenes videos (click here, here, or here). I myself am not overly interested in sound, but the creative process behind what you hear is simply fascinating.
See more of the behind the “sound” with Black Swan, True Grit, The Social Network, and more after the jump… (more…)
I recently came across a couple featurettes relating to some of the films competing in the Oscars.
The first was a short video about the production design of True Grit.
The second was another video detailing the steps taken to produce the visual effects for Black Swan.
In the past couple of days I have happened upon a few other videos detailing different aspects of not only True Grit and Black Swan, but also The Social Network and The King’s Speech. All of these came to my attention via the guy at /film.
The first video is another look at True Grit, but instead of looking at the production design, it takes a look into the mind of one of my heroes, Roger Deakins, the cinematographer. This short video details where some of his inspiration comes from and highlights some of the key scenes in the film.
Check out the other two videos after the break…