Barack Obama, John Singleton and the Academy toast 'Do the Right Thing'
Credit: Universal Pictures

Barack Obama, John Singleton and the Academy toast 'Do the Right Thing'

Remembering a masterpiece 25 years later

Yes, another day, another anniversary. But this one is quite noteworthy.

Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing" turns 25 on Monday. It is a film I first saw when I was young, but I wasn't at all ready for it. I saw it again in film school and noticed I had grown with it, but it still whipped up complex feelings (as only the best films can). I've revisited it a number of times over the years and come to cherish it as one of the greatest pieces of cinema ever conjured, but the Academy frankly seemed like it was holding its nose just to give it the two nominations it received a quarter century ago.

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<p>Jack Reynor in &quot;Transformers: Age of Extinction.&quot;</p>

Jack Reynor in "Transformers: Age of Extinction."

Credit: Paramount Pictures

Tell us what you thought of 'Transformers: Age of Extinction'

Michael Bay is back with Mark Wahlberg in tow, but are you blown away?

I haven't seen "Transformers: Age of Extinction" yet, and if truth be told, I'm not exactly rushing to amend that state of affairs -- Michael Bay's cash-spinning franchise exhausted me on its very first entry, and while the third film was certainly an improvement on the bewilderingly incoherent second, I'm not sure I have the stamina to go there again for 165 minutes. Then again, I'm a longstanding Mark Wahlberg fan and am rooting for Jack Reynor's career to take off, so maybe at some point down the line.

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Jessica Chastain and James McAvoy in "The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby."
Jessica Chastain and James McAvoy in "The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby."
Credit: The Weinstein Company

Chastain and McAvoy go their own way in trailer for 'The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby'

The Toronto and Cannes hit opens on September 26

I liked Ned Benson's debut "The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby," the edited version of which I caught up with a Cannes last month -- but not as much as I liked Jessica Chastain and James McAvoy in it. I haven't seen the two-film version of the project that debuted in Toronto, but I sensed something had been lost in its condensation into one feature.

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'Gravity,' 'Iron Man 3,' 'Breaking Bad' and 'The Walking Dead' lead 2014 Saturn Award winners
Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

'Gravity,' 'Iron Man 3,' 'Breaking Bad' and 'The Walking Dead' lead 2014 Saturn Award winners

'Gravity' and '12 Years a Slave' aren't finished winning awards yet

If you thought you had left the 2013-2014 awards season behind, you were sorely mistaken. Though it's probably fair to say that Wednesday night's edition of the annual Saturn Awards (recognizing the best in genre film and television) will be the final addition over at The Circuit.

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<p>U2 at the 86th annual Academy Awards</p>

U2 at the 86th annual Academy Awards

Credit: AP Photo

Good news for bands like U2 as Oscar rule changes take effect

The Best Production Design category also evolves with the times

The Academy has announced its official rule changes today, on the heels of a release earlier this week that addressed campaign strictures. Key changes have been made in a number of categories, including Best Picture, Best Original Song and the acting fields.

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John Hurt, Chris Evans and Jamie Bell in "Snowpiercer."
John Hurt, Chris Evans and Jamie Bell in "Snowpiercer."
Credit: The Weinstein Company

Tell us what you thought of 'Snowpiercer'

Bong Joon-ho's railborne thriller has been a long time coming - is it worth the wait?

Better late than never, as they say -- and for the longest time, it looked rather as if it could be closer to "never" when it came to a US release date for "Snowpiercer." The Chris Evans-starring sci-fi thriller from Korean auteur Bong Joon-ho was released in the director's homeland 11 months ago, but famously got caught up in an(other) editing dispute with The Weinstein Company, with even the film's actors getting vocally involved in the fallout. In the end, Bong prevailed, and his cut of the film finally hits US screens in limited release today. So, is it worth the wait?

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Lupita Nyong'o and Michael Fassbender
Lupita Nyong'o and Michael Fassbender
Credit: AP Photo

Josh Hutcherson, Lupita Nyong'o, Pharrell and 268 others invited to join the Academy

Other invitees range from Chris Rock to Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Pop quiz: What do Chris Rock, Claire Denis, Eddie Vedder and Josh Hutcherson all have in common? Answer: They could all be Oscar voters very soon. The annual Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences invitation list always makes for interesting reading, shedding light on just how large and far-reaching the group's membership is -- or could be, depending on who accepts their invitations.

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<p>&quot;Alone Yet Not Alone.&quot;</p>

"Alone Yet Not Alone."

Credit: Enthuse Entertainment

The Academy responds to 'Alone Yet Not Alone'-gate with new campaign regulations

Music Branch gets specific attention in the new rules revealed today

Ah, remember "Alone Yet Not Alone?" For a couple of weeks at the wintery height of awards season, it was the gift that kept giving for Oscar scandal-mongers -- the head-scratching surprise of its nomination in the first place, the uncovering of its dodgy campaign tactics, the shame of its eventual disqualification. And five month later, most people have forgotten the film (which was formally released only last week) ever even existed. Oscar season: it chews you up and spits you out, but rarely quite so humiliatingly. 

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<p>Joe Carnahan</p>

Joe Carnahan

Credit: AP Photo

'The Grey' director Joe Carnahan to take on 'Five Against a Bullet'

Bodyguard team-up flick is right up the director's alley

I've been eager to see how Joe Carnahan will follow up 2012's "The Grey" (my number one movie that year). He had a stellar vision for "Daredevil" but Fox passed on it and gave up their lease, leading Marvel to develop the property with "Cabin in the Woods" director Drew Goddard as a series for Netflix. Coming this year (or maybe next — watch for a Toronto bow) is "Stretch" with Patrick Wilson and Chris Pine. And Carnahan has always had this and that lurking, whether an adaptation of James Ellroy's "White Jazz" or the Pablo Escobar story "Killing Pablo." But it looks like the gritty "Five Against a Bullet" is on deck, and it sounds awesome.

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Rooney Mara
Rooney Mara
Credit: AP Photo

Rooney Mara turns producer-star for 'A House in the Sky'

The Oscar nominee is producing the project alongside Megan Ellison

Rooney Mara has been playing things pretty cool since picking up a Best Actress Oscar nomination two years ago for "The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo." The franchise initially beckoned by David Fincher's Scandi-thriller remake hasn't come to pass, which has left Mara room to be discerning: she had classy leading roles last year in David Lowery's "Ain't Them Bodies Saints" and Steven Soderbergh's "Side Effects," though neither one was built entirely around her; a tart supporting role in Spike Jonze's Best Picture nominee "Her" further added to her credibility.

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