Each year, the Library of Congress selects 25 films to be named to the National Film Registry, a proclamation of commitment to preserving the chosen pictures for all time. They can be big studio pictures or experimental short films, goofball comedies or poetic meditations on life. The National Film Registery "showcases the extraordinary diversity of America’s film heritage and the disparate strands making it so vibrant" and by preserving the films, the Library of Congress hopes to "a crucial element of American creativity, culture and history.” This year’s selections span the period 1913 to 2004 and include a number of films you’re familiar with. Unless you’ve never heard of "Saving Private Ryan," "The Big Lebowski," “Rosemary’s Baby” or "Ferris Bueller's Day Off."
During her Gotham Awards tribute speech, Tilda Swinton name-checked one unexpected collaborator just before exiting stage: Chris Lyons, the man behind Fangs FX. A prosthetic effects company specializing in dental wonders, Swinton personally rang Lyons for four films that played in 2014: "Only Lovers Left Alive," "Zero Theorem," "The Grand Budapest Hotel," and "Snowpiercer." For Swinton, the makeover is part of the job. If she can use special effects makeup to inch just a little closer to her vision of the character, she’ll leap at the chance. A new behind-the-scenes video gives those who bow at the Swinton altar a chance to see her undergo this metamorphosis, going from "Snowpiercer" makeup chair to on-set rehearsal with director Bong Joon-ho.
This year's Best Supporting Actress field has more or less firmed up. It seems Patricia Arquette and Meryl Streep are ahead of the pack and have been for weeks. Keira Knightley and Emma Stone are on somewhat solid ground, rounding out the four with the HFPA/BFCA/SAG trifecta. Jessica Chastain is obviously in the mix and we've already written about Tilda Swinton being in the thick of it (as well as about why Minnie Driver deserves to be in the thick of it). Naomi Watts has her SAG nod, but that will probably have to suffice. And so that seems to be the field. But you know who really should be in this conversation? Rene freakin' Russo, that's who.
The Houston Film Critics Society has announced nominations, and no surprise, the three-horse race for critical darling of the year led the way: "Birdman" with 10, "Boyhood" with seven and "The Grand Budapest Hotel" with six. They also throw in a Best Poster category and deign to chart the year's worst.
The Phoenix Film Critics Society ended up splitting their Best Picture and Best Director awards between the two most critically acclaimed (on the circuit) films of the year: "Birdman" and "Boyhood." The former picked up six awards in total, and the only real divergent note throughout is that Keira Knightley won Best Supporting Actress.
Though Circuit underdogs "The Grand Budapest Hotel" and "Inherent Vice" came close to the top prize, the Toronto Film Critics Association followed suit on Tuesday when it named Richard Linklater’s "Boyhood" as the best film of 2014. Collectively, the group called it "a cinematic masterpiece that evokes beauty in life and the inevitable passage of time," adding an honor to Linklater for his "singular achievement."
The Florida Film Critics Circle announced its 2014 film nominations Tursday, which align with the populist opinion that "Birdman" and "Boyhood" are pretty darn good movies. The real surprise: Who knew the Florida critical contingent was so geeky? "Jodorowsky’s Dune" up for Best Documentary and "The Raid 2" in the Best Foreign Film category. Genre enthusiasts appreciate the love, Florida.
Last year, Lupita Nyong’o stepped out from obscurity to wow crowds in "12 Years a Slave" and earn her first Oscar. 12 months later, supporting actor workhorse David Oyelowo is taking a similar jump, earning rave reviews for his role as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in "Selma." The unexpected common link between the two performances? Brad Pitt and his production banner Plan B. Now, according to Variety, Pitt will play matchmaker for this critically acclaimed pair: They’ll star together in Plan B’s new indie film "Americanah."
Chiming in from across the pond, the London Film Critics Circle has added its collective voice to the 2014 circuit with a list of nominations. It was "Mr. Turner" that led the way with seven total nominations, though "Birdman" wasn't far behind with six. Julianne Moore picked up a pair of nominations in the lead actress category for her work in "Maps to the Stars" and Oscar play "Still Alice," while Benedict Cumberbatch ("The Imitation Game"), Eddie Redmayne ("The Theory of Everything") and Timothy Spall ("Mr. Turner") each saw nominations in the lead actor and British actor of the year categories.