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‘Amour’ (2012): The Stereotypical Oscar-Bait

Directed by: Michael Haneke || Produced by: Margaret Menegoz, Stefan Arndt, Veit Heiduschka, Michael Katz Written by: Michael Haneke || Starring: Jean-Louis Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva, Isabelle Huppert Cinematography by: Darius Khondji || Editing by: Monika Willi || Country: Austria, France, Germany || Language: French Running Time: 127 minutes 2012’s token French Best Picture-nominee, Amour, is vintage … Continue reading

‘Silver Linings Playbook’ (2012): Romantic Drama with Deeper Meaning

Directed by: David O. Russell || Produced by: Bruce Cohen, Donna Gigliotti Screenplay by: David O. Russell || Starring: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Jacki Weaver, Anupam Kher, Chris Tucker, Julia Stiles, John Ortiz Music by: Danny Elfman || Cinematography: Masanobu Takayanagi || Editing by: Jay Cassidy, Crispin Struthers || Country: United States || Language: … Continue reading

‘Zero Dark Thirty’ (2012): Kathryn Bigelow Embraces Cinéma Vérité

Directed by: Kathryn Bigelow || Produced by: Mark Boal, Kathryn Bigelow, Megan Ellison Written by: Mark Boal || Starring: Jessica Chastain, Jason Clarke, Jennifer Ehle, Kyle Chandler, Edgar Ramirez, Joel Edgerton Music by: Alexandre Desplat || Cinematography by: Greig Fraser || Editing by: Dylan Tichenor, William Goldenberg || Country: United States || Language: English Running … Continue reading

‘Django Unchained’ (2012): The Spaghetti Western Goes South

Directed by: Quentin Tarantino || Produced by: Stacey Sher, Reginald Hudlin, Pilar Savone Screenplay by: Quentin Tarantino || Starring: Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson, Walton Goggins, Dennis Christopher, James Remar, Michael Parks, Don Johnson Music by: James Brown, 2Pac, RZA, Rick Ross et al. || Cinematography: Robert Richardson || Editing … Continue reading

‘Lincoln’ (2012): Illinois’ Favorite Son Gets His Definitive Big-Screen Rendition

Directed by: Steven Spielberg || Produced by: Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy Written by: Tony Kushner || Starring: Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Field, David Strathairn, Tommy Lee Jones, James Spader, Hal Holbrook, Joseph Gordon-Levitt Music by: John Williams || Cinematography by: Janusz Kaminski || Editing by: Michal Kahn || Country: United States || Language: English Running Time: … Continue reading

‘Life is Beautiful’ (1997): Two Hours of the Same Good Joke

Directed by: Roberto Benigni || Produced by: Gianluigi Braschi, Elda Ferri Screenplay by: Roberto Benigni, Vincenzo Cerami || Starring: Roberto Benigni, Nicoletta Braschi, Giorgio Cantarini, Giustino Durano, Horst Buchholz Music by: Nicola Piovani || Cinematography: Tonino Delli Colli || Editing by: Simona Paggi || Country: Italy || Language: Italian, German Running Time: 116 minutes Sometimes, you … Continue reading

‘Killing Them Softly’ (2012): Assholes & Heavy-Handed Preaching

Directed by: Andrew Dominik || Produced by: Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner, Steve Schwartz, Paula Mae Schwartz, Anthony Katagas Written by: Andrew Dominik || Starring: Brad Pitt, Scoot McNairy, Ben Mendelsohn, Richard Jenkins, James Gandolfini, Ray Liotta, Sam Shepard, Vince Curatola Cinematography by: Greig Fraser || Editing by: Brian A. Kates, John Paul Horstmann || Country: … Continue reading

‘Life of Pi’ (2012): Because Fictional Biopics Are Better

Directed by: Ang Lee || Produced by: Gil Netter, Ang Lee, David Womark Screenplay by: David Magee || Starring: Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Tabu, Adil Hussain, Rafe Spall, Gerard Depardieu Music by: Mychael Danna || Cinematography: Claudio Miranda || Editing by: Tim Squyres || Country: United States, Taiwan, United Kingdom || Language: English, Tamil Running Time: … Continue reading

‘The Master’ (2012): Paul Thomas Anderson at His Most Obtuse

Directed by: Paul Thomas Anderson || Produced by: Paul Thomas Anderson, Megan Ellison, Daniel Lupi, JoAnne Sellar Screenplay by: Paul Thomas Anderson || Starring: Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams, Ambyr Childers, Jesse Plemons, Rami Malek, Laura Dern, Madisen Beaty Music by: Jonny Greenwood || Cinematography: Mihai Malaimare Jr. || Editing by: Leslie Jones, Peter … Continue reading

‘Skyfall’ (2012): Pretty Cool & Pretty Overrated

Directed by: Sam Mendes || Produced by: Michael G. Wilson, Barbara Broccoli Written by: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, John Logan || Starring: Daniel Craig, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Berenice Marlohe, Albert Finney, Judi Dench Music by: Thomas Newman || Cinematography by: Roger Deakins || Editing by: Stuart Baird, Kate Baird || Country: United … Continue reading