Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Going Ga Ga over the La La Land Trailer!

You can probably pencil this in for all sorts of Fisti Awards noms/wins (and I'm currently predicting this for all sorts of Oscar attention too) because this is the kind of film I live and breathe for.  It doesn't hurt that the trailer is THIS BEAUTIFUL.  The special effects, the glorious sets and lighting, the scope of it all, the glitzy musical numbers, Gosling's low octave vocals, Stone's longing stare, the moody-dreamy quality of it all...the tears streaming down my face as my body ACHES to have this movie in my life right now!!!

I'm ready for this film to make my soul laugh, smile and weep! 

Monday, July 11, 2016

2013 Mouthi Awards Ceremony

The ceremony for the 2013 Mouthi Awards took place in L.A. at the Calabasas Mansion owned by Kris Jenner on December 31st at 8:00 PM, Eastern Standard Time.  

It was hosted by self-proclaimed deity, Kanye West.

At Kanye's demand, only 17 people were invited to the Kardashian home, and of those 17 only 3 were actual nominees (himself included).  The other 2 nominees being Beyonce Knowles and John Legend.  He canceled all planned presenters and decided to host, present and accept all awards himself, unless they were won by the aforementioned nominees allowed to attend.

Here are the highlights:

Thursday, June 30, 2016

The Best Sounds of 2016's First Half

Well, the first half of the year is over, and while life got in the way of the blog and my ability to keep up with Tuesday Tunes Tastings, life didn't prohibit me from actually listening to almost every new album that came out.  In fact, I've ingested well over 100 albums this year (128 to be exact, not including the countless EP's I've listened to) and so I wanted to give a quick rundown on the 30 albums at the top of my list so far.  These 30 albums are made up of my current ballots in the six categories that I have for the Mouthis (Pop, Urban Contemporary, Alternative, Country, Rock, Dance/Electronica).  I did not include my favorite EP's in the actual list, but I'll give them to you now:

Thursday, June 23, 2016

1999 Fisti Awards

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1999.  DAYAM!  That is all I can really say about this year.  Such a rich bounty of GREAT films cluttered this year, making narrowing down almost all of these categories (but mainly Best Picture and Supporting Actress) hard as f*ck.  In fact, I came VERY close to mirroring Oscar's 1939 decision and extending my Best Picture field to a ballot of 10, but at the very last minute I reverted back to five, since in my mind there was a clear five (despite LOVING about 20 films this year).

Now this is the year that Oscar went with American Beauty, and it's one of those longstanding controversial decisions because many, many people feel as though the film doesn't hold up.  On the flip side, many, many people feel as though it does.  It's a split decision, which always makes discussion of this year so rich.

Personally it wouldn't have been my choice of Oscar's ballot, but at the end of the day I do still adore it and it lands in my Top Twelve.

What makes this year so incredible is the rich tapestry and themes, ideas, concepts and constructions that take place.  You have so much variety here, and I indulged in so much.  This is one of those weird Fisti years though, that despite so much wealth I opted NOT to spread it much and actually handed a slew of noms/wins to one film in particular that over the years has grown and grown and grown in my esteem.

With 10 individual noms, 7 of which netted actual wins, I'd say we have a clear champion of the year that was 1999.

So, with that in mind I present to you the Fisti Awards of 1999!

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

1983 Fisti Awards

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1983.  My LORD does this year suck.  The 80's as a whole was such a wasteland of film, which is so tragic, but this year in particular (especially when you go by Oscar's ballots) is just so incredibly dire.  So much of this year just feels so...basic.  Yeah, this movie is good and that movie was nice and then that movie over there was entertaining but at the end of the day there is very little about 1983 that makes me care at all.

And that Oscar Best Picture lineup is...unfortunate.  It's not that they're terrible films (well, Tender Mercies is borderline awful) but they are just so...blandly uninspired.  The Dresser is the only film of the five that had any real impact on me, and while it would most likely make my Top 12, I don't think it would any other year (more on the 'would' in a moment).  Terms of Endearment is nice and all, but pretty much a glorified Soap Opera, and The Right Stuff is generic biopic bait that is overlong and disengaging.  The Big Chill has its moments and is charming to a degree, but it feels more like a performance piece than anything else.

Quite frankly, I'm baffled Fanny and Alexander was snubbed, considering how much Bergman had been embraced (as far as foreign directors are concerned) but the Academy, but I'm kind of glad it was snubbed because it would have still lost and having that masterpiece lose to any of the other nominated films would have been disgraceful.

All of that said, this next truth is going to sounds really odd, but like 2013, I fudged my own rules and have 6 BP nominees.  Why?  In a year that is so dire and so...awful collectively?  Because of all the basic crap being shelled out this year, there were 6 films that were such a clear notch above the rest I couldn't not nominate all of them.

I kind of love the range of these films, too.  I mean, a nostalgic film noir straight out of the 40's, a foreign familial drama with an epic touch, a Scorsese comedy/thriller, a thought-provoking documentary, a sci-fi soap opera and a slapstick mockumentary!

After those 6 films, the quality of film drops rather drastically.  In fact, this year I didn't bother doing a Top 12 at all!  Yup, it just didn't feel right.  Sure, there are other films I like, but like enough to consider them among the 'best of the year'?  Not really.

Excited, aren't you?

Oh, and before we begin; SUCK IT HATERS, Return of the Jedi is not only an amazing movie but is, in my opinion, the BEST Star Wars film!

LOL, so with that in mind, I present to you the Fisti Awards of 1983!

Monday, May 23, 2016

1963 Fisti Awards

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1963.  The year of Tom Jones.  I feel like this little film gets a lot of flack for being an Oscar winning film, but I kind of like it a lot.  I don't adore it or anything, but when you stack it up against some of the other films in that Best Picture lineup, it feels like the ONLY option.  I mean, Lilies of the Field is borderline awful and Cleopatra is so messy (beautiful, sure, but messy as hell).  I'm kind of baffled that those films even made it into the lineup, especially when you had well received films like This Sporting Life, Hud and Fellini's masterpiece, 8 1/2, racking up nominations elsewhere.  8 1/2 feels like such an awful exclusion, especially when you consider that it is probably the most well regarded film of the year and Fellini himself made it onto the Director and Screenplay ballots.

But this is Oscar, and they just never warmed to including foreign films in their BP ballots.

Outside of Oscar, this year had a lot to love.  My personal BP ballot makes me extremely happy and I feel like it well represents all that was great about the year.  From personal foreign dramas to glitzy Hollywood rom-coms to whatever the hell Hud was, I bow at this five films.


And with that said, I present to you the Fisti Awards for 1963!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

2015 Fisti Awards

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2015.  This has been a crazy year for me, but while the year wasn't everything I'd hope it would be, personally, it was pretty incredible from a cinematic point of view; and that's what we're here to talk about.  From an awards standpoint, the year was anything but fluid, which made for some nail-biters on Oscar night since nothing was certain, and that was proven in Spotlight's last minute dash to Oscar Best Picture victory.  Deserved win?  Hell yes.  The complaints that Spotlight is too generic or baity or safe are void when you consider just how powerful and authentic the film is.  Sure, there are other edgier and inspired picks out there, but when it comes to Oscar winning films, this one is a very nice addition to the catalog.  

For me, though, this year was all about the kids.  Whether it be films about childhood, growing up or losing (and possibly re-gaining) innocence or the sheer fantasy of watching the essence of childhood breathed to life on the screen (and let's not forget the astonishing child performances that gripped my soul), this year was all about those little ones.

And speaking of the children, this year felt ripe with candidates for the Lee Hirsch Award for Change, but two films in particular stuck out to me as VERY deserving.  One of them was already going to win Best Picture here so I figured I'd let the other have the spotlight.

Hint hint.

And of course there were two films this year that touched me in ways most films never could have dreamed of and have cemented themselves in my heart for all time.  It became a real Sophie's Choice for me in Best Picture, but I went with the one that effected me most as the person I am now and not the person I once was, if that makes sense.  Both films though, will easily make my 100 Favorite Films of All Time list whenever I get around to revising it.

I also want to apologize to Britt and Sati who are most likely going to hate 90% of what I've nominated & awarded.

And with that in mind, I present to you the Fisti Awards of 2015!