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The State of the Race: Defining an Oscar Frontrunner

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“I call to you, I call to you but I don’t call soft enough. There ain’t no cure for love.” – L. Cohen The Oscar race, like an urgent search for “true love,” is rarely about finding Ms. Right, so much as it is about finding Ms. Right Now. Sometimes you get lucky and the voters lock onto something so deserving that its rightness reverberates through the hall of fame…

Reviving the Memory of Lincoln Seamstress Elizabeth Keckly

Reviving the Memory of Lincoln Seamstress Elizabeth Keckly

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One of the most enjoyable things about Spielberg/Kushner’s Lincoln is how subtle much of it is. You’d never really know much about the character Gloria Reuben plays unless you were deep into Lincoln history. Her name was Elizabeth Keckly and she was famous in her own right. Robert McNamara writes up the burial honor given to Keckly back in 2010. Elizabeth Keckly was a most unlikely figure, a slave who…

Spielberg, Kearns Goodwin at Gettysburg Dedication, Livestream

Spielberg, Kearns Goodwin at Gettysburg Dedication, Livestream

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Now speaking on the life of Lincoln, Spielberg.

Lincoln Over-Performs at the Box Office in Expanded Release

Lincoln Over-Performs at the Box Office in Expanded Release

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Box Office Mojo reports that Lincoln is doing better than expected at the box office on its expansion to 1,175 theaters. Argo is edging slowly towards $100 million, currently at $92 and yes, Twilight Breaking Dawn broke a record for the franchise. All in all, a great season at the multiplex. Flight doing extremely well at $61 million. Lincoln is especially impressive, given that it’s not dumbed down for maximum…

Reader Spotlight: Lincoln Review by Nic V

Reader Spotlight: Lincoln Review by Nic V

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I saw Lincoln yesterday with some apprehension. I’ve been waiting to see this film since it was announced over a year ago. I remembered however how much I had anticipated War Horse and how disappointed I was after seeing that film. I was apprehensive about the length of Lincoln. Two and half hours is a long time. I had called a friend to go with me to see Lincoln, the…

How Spielberg’s Cinematographer Got These Eleven Shots

How Spielberg’s Cinematographer Got These Eleven Shots

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Vulture dives into the collaboration of Steven Spielberg and Janusz Kaminski, starting with AI and working up to Lincoln. For Lincoln he chooses the opening shot. But I suspect the one that will be most remembered for the film is this one. It has stirred conversation by critics who believe the film should have ended there. And it easily could have. I prefer the way Spielberg chose to end it,…

Tony Kushner on Colbert

Tony Kushner on Colbert

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“Is Lincoln sexy?” “Absolutely … HUGE feet” The Colbert Report Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Political Humor & Satire Blog,Video Archive

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Hollywood, the Oscars and Race

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It really isn’t fair that every film involving any ethnic group besides white people is controversial at the outset. Even before the film is seen it’s controversial — just for including Black or Asian or Hispanic characters, or independent strong-willed women, it’s controversial. Our need to redefine identity through American film is vital to progress — but it can also choke the life out of artistic expression, particularly when the…

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The State of the Race: Fumbling Towards Enlightenment

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The Oscars can be a kaleidoscope view of our world — spectacular and surreal. Or they can be a microscope, honing in with sharp perspective on matters we’re obliged to observe with crystal clarity. The themes that course through this year’s Oscar race for Best Picture will likely be far more consequential than stories of a king from the 1930s who stuttered or a silent movie star who lost his…

Les-Miserables

Ensemble Casts on the Path to Best Picture

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Will actors eventually be selected out of their central role in movies, increasing replaced by animation,  performance capture, and other evolving forms of digital characters?  That irrational fear has been drifting in and out of Oscar conversations for years. Just as the pleasure of reading books has endured while movies became the world’s foremost storyteller, films driven by great performances remain as popular now as they’ve ever been.  In the end,…