Welcome to The Morning Read.
Sorry about that. Things get crazy around Butt-Numb-A-Thon time every year. There's a gravity the event casts that is bigger than just those two days, and sure enough, about three Morning Reads fell right into it. We're back today, though, and here through the holidays, so you'll have plenty of presents under the tree to unwrap here at HitFix.
I've also been working on locking down my top ten list for this year, and you'll see that here on the site next week in a format that's a little different from anything I've ever done with the end-of-the-year stuff. It's been a great year of movies, and I'm thrilled to be publishing what looks to me like an unreasonably strong final list.
I'm feeling good today. We've crossed the mark where, finally, there is less than a month till my family gets home from this preposterously long vacation of theirs. Sure, I leave for Sundance three or four days after they get home, but still, I'm going to actually have them here again, and I couldn't be happier about that. I expect that every day I get closer to their return, my mood will get that much better, to the point where I'll be in full-on Gene Kelly tap-dancing mode on the morning I pick them up at LAX.
I assume you read my coverage of BNAT here on the site. There was the article I did about the premiere programming, the one about the vintage programming, and my review of "Drive Angry 3D." What you may not have read is the true story about the terrible ordeal I suffered at the hands (heh heh heh… hands) of TSA on my way back from BNAT. I'd prefer not to elborate because the trauma is still too fresh. I'll just confirm that someone did indeed help themselves to the contents of my suitcase, and only Moises Chiullan has had the courage to tell this story. And you wonder why newspapers are dying.
Maybe I'm crazy, but now that Daniel Day-Lewis is set to play Abraham Lincoln for Steven Spielberg, Liam Neeson's looking for a job, and he has been completely reinvented as an action hero thanks to "Taken," so why isn't he the first choice for "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter"? I'm not complaining about Eric Bana, who I feel like could end up being a very funny and appropriate choice, but still... I feel like they're missing the opportunity of opportunities leaving Neeson on the bench.
Sophia Coppola says "Somewhere" started life as a vampire film? Really?
Did you see Kurt Kuenne's powerful documentary "Dear Zachary"? It's impossible to shake once you've seen it. It's one of the few films that I would recommend immediately to people but that I have no interest in ever seeing again. The film is a powerful piece of advocacy for Bill C-464, which allows the courts to deny bail to anyone accused of a serious crime against children. And, as of today, it's a law. This is a case of real life giving a happy ending to one of the most difficult films I've ever seen.
You know why outer space is awesome? Two words: ice volcanoes.
Looks like I'm not sitting down to chat with John Cameron Mitchell this time around, but I'll gladly track down every single interview he does for "Rabbit Hole." I've been waiting nine years for him to prove "Hedwig" wasn't a one-off, and I'm thrilled to see the response to this powerful, lacerating film about picking up the pieces in the wake of crippling grief.
Can you imagine if Spike Jonze had ended up playing Batman?
I love it when unused Pixar material ends up being released, and I'm fascinated by these designs for aliens that originally appeared in "WALL-E," and I'm curious where they would have fit into the film.
Wow… this is the first time I've ever seen anyone put the question directly to Kevin Spacey, and I really like the way he handled it.
Hey, look… evil dark wizard magic lives in your iPhone:
Yeah, that's obviously the work of Satan. No two ways about it.
I'm intrigued by the notion of a movie based on "The Museum Of The Weird," which I guess was an unused Disney ride idea. The ride sounds like it would have been awesome, and at this point, Disney has proven that they can do the theme-park-ride-turned-movie, and it just depends on who's making it. With a title like that, I would imagine filmmakers would be thrilled to get their hands on the material.
If anyone out there would like to get me this for Christmas, I would happily write a review for every single title included. And if you want to buy two of them, send one to Matthew Kiernan, my buddy who pointed this out in the first place. That is seriously one of the greatest film nerd toys I've ever seen in my life, and I covet it with burning intensity.
I never used Delicious, but evidently a whole lot of people I know did and they are furious that it's shutting down. Here's a tip for how to make that loss a little less painful.
There are 17 minutes of "2001: A Space Odyssey," cut by Kubrick after the film's initial release, that have been discovered intact. I. Must. See. Them. Now.
And while we're on the subject of special effects and movies...
James Ellroy, your next novel is ready. All you have to do is write it.
And finally, as you read a million different top ten lists at the end of the year, remember that the only one you really need is the one by Mark Lisanti.
Have a great weekend, and make sure you check in to see what we've got cooking for the weekend, and then we'll see you back here Monday morning to start this all over again.