Another Big Win for "Carol" 


Todd Haynes' "Carol" has been receiving a lot of love from various critics groups and this time, it topped the ranking of the year's best films at the annual Film Comment magazine poll!

Take a look at the complete list below and then wonder, didn't these critics see "Star Wars: The Force Awakens?"

Film Comment's Top 20 Films of 2015


1. "Carol"
2. "The Assassin"
3. "Mad Max: Fury Road"
4. "Clouds of Sils Maria"
5. "Arabian Nights"
6. "Timbuktu"
7. "Spotlight"
8. "Phoenix"
9. "Inside Out"
10. "The Look of Silence"
11. "Hard to Be a God"
12. "Anomalisa"
13. "In Jackson Heights"
14. "Son of Saul"
15. "Horse Money"
16. "Jauja"
17. "Tangerine"
18. "Brooklyn"
19. "The Diary of a Teenage Girl"
20. "Bridge of Spies"

Film Comment's Best Undistributed Films of 2015

1. "Right Here, Right Now"
2. "Chevalier"
3. "The Sky Trembles and the Earth Is Afraid and the Two Eyes Are Not Brothers"
4. "The Academy of Muses"
5. "Don't Blink — Robert Frank"
6. "Cosmos"
7. "Journey to the Shore"
8. "Happy Hour"
9. "Lost and Beautiful"
10. "Minotaur"
11. "Kaili Blues"
12. "Sixty Six"
13. "Visit, or Memories and Confessions"
14. "El Movimiento"
15. "88:88"
16. "Microbe & Gasoline"
17. "Pervert Park"
18. "Afternoon"
19. "Of the North"
20. "The Smell of Us"

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"Carol" Leads Austin Film Critics Association 2015 Awards Nominations! 


Todd Haynes' "Carol" led the pack of the Austin Film Critics Association (AFCA) 2015 awards nominations. The film received seven nomination including for Best Picture, Best Director (Todd Haynes) and Best Actress (Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara).

Winners, as well as the Top 10 films of 2015 will be announced on Dec. 29.

Here's the complete list of nominees of the Austin Film Critics Assocation 2015 awards nominations:

Best Film:
Anomalisa
Carol
Mad Max: Fury Road
Spotlight
Trumbo

Best Director:
Todd Haynes, Carol
Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
Adam McKay, The Big Short
George Miller, Mad Max: Fury Road
Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight

Best Actor:
Bryan Cranston, Trumbo
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
Michael B. Jordan, Creed
Jacob Tremblay, Room

Best Actress:
Cate Blanchett, Carol
Brie Larson, Room
Rooney Mara, Carol
Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn
Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road

Best Supporting Actor:
Benicio Del Toro, Sicario
Idris Elba, Beasts of No Nation
Oscar Isaac, Ex Machina
Michael Shannon, 99 Homes
Sylvester Stallone, Creed

Best Supporting Actress:
Elizabeth Banks, Love & Mercy
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Kristen Stewart, Clouds of Sils Maria
Alicia Vikander, Ex Machina
Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

Best Original Screenplay:
Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve, Josh Cooley, Inside Out
Alex Garland, Ex-Machina
Taylor Sheridan, Sicario
Josh Singer & Tom McCarthy, Spotlight
Quentin Tarantino, The Hateful Eight

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Emma Donoghue, Room
Charlie Kaufman, Anomalisa
Phyllis Nagy, Carol
Charles Randolph and Adam McKay, The Big Short
Aaron Sorkin, Steve Jobs

Best Cinematography:
Roger Deakins, Sicario
Edward Lachman, Carol
Emmanuel Lubezki, The Revenant
Robert Richardson, The Hateful Eight
John Seale, Mad Max: Fury Road

Best Score:
Carter Burwell, Carol
Michael Giacchino, Inside Out
Tom Holkenborg (as Junkie XL), Max Max: Fury Road
Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight
Rich Vreeland (as Disasterpeace), It Follows

Best Foreign-Language Film:

Mustang
Phoenix
Son of Saul
The Tribe
Victoria

Best Documentary:
Amy
Best of Enemies
Cartel Land
The Look of Silence
Where to Invade Next

Best Animated Film:
Anomalisa
The Good Dinosaur
Inside Out
The Peanuts Movie
Shaun the Sheep Movie

Best First Film:
Bone Tomahawk
The Diary of a Teenage Girl
Ex Machina
Mustang
Son of Saul

The Robert R. “Bobby” McCurdy Memorial Breakthrough Artist Award:
Abraham Attah, Beasts of No Nation
Amy Schumer, Trainwreck
Mya Taylor, Tangerine
Jacob Tremblay, Room
Alicia Vikander, Ex-Machina

Best Austin Film:
Arlo and Julie (dir: Steve Mims)
A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story (dir: Sara Hirsh Bordo)
Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (dir: David Zellner)
Peace Officer (dir: Brad Barber, Scott Christopherson)
Two Step (dir: Alex R. Johnson)

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"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" Among AFI's Movies of the Year Selections! 


Now that "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" has been released, we can all go back to Awards Season chatter. First stop, oh wait, it's about "Star Wars" again! The J.J. Abrams flick is one of the chosen ones by the American Film Institute for their yearly AFI Awards! According to them, AFI Awards "aren’t like other accolades about the art form — they acknowledge the importance of the collaborative nature of film and TV production and bring together the community’s creative teams, both in front of and behind the camera."

And now, without further adieu, here are the AFI Awards 2015 Official Selections:

MOVIES OF THE YEAR

THE BIG SHORT
BRIDGE OF SPIES
CAROL
INSIDE OUT
MAD MAX: FURY ROAD
THE MARTIAN
ROOM
SPOTLIGHT
STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS
STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON

TV PROGRAMS OF THE YEAR

THE AMERICANS
BETTER CALL SAUL
BLACK-ISH
EMPIRE
FARGO
GAME OF THRONES
HOMELAND
MASTER OF NONE
MR. ROBOT
UNREAL

AFI SPECIAL AWARD

MAD MEN

And here's the rest of the press release:

The landmark series MAD MEN, which aired its final episodes this year, has been recognized with an AFI Special Award for its contributions to America’s cultural legacy. During its run, the series made the AFI AWARDS list a total of seven times — more than any other TV program in the history of the awards.

Honorees will gather on January 8, 2016 at the AFI AWARDS private luncheon, a noncompetitive and intimate event where AFI will reveal the jury rationales for each selection.


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Why I'm Saying "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" Is Among the Best Movies of the Year! 


I tried my best to keep this review as spoiler-free as possible! You have to see “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” with a fresh perspective to truly admire J.J. Abrams’ craftsmanship! But I’m so glad that Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, and Harrison Ford are back in their respective roles as Leia, Luke, and Han Solo. And Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron), Adam Driver (Kylo Ren), Domnhall Gleeson (General Hux), John Boyega (Finn), and Daisy Ridley (Rey) are welcome additions to the cast.

So is the force strong with “Star Wars: The Force Awakens?” Take a look at my review:



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Just Saw "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" and Here's What I Think! 
Our reviews are embargoed until tomorrow, Wednesday, so meanwhile, here's what I think of the J.J.Abrams-directed film! I saw the movie early in the morning at the Walt Disney Studios Lot in Burbank. So here's my non-verbal reaction to "Star Wars: The Force Awakens."



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