What If Lisa Marie Was In Charge of the Golden Raspberry Awards

If you’re following the Awards ceremony, you know that two major events are coming up next week.  On Tuesday, the Oscar nominations will be announced.  But before that, on Monday, the Golden Raspberry Award nominations will be announced.  For 32 years, the Golden Raspberries have been honoring the worst films of the year and they’ve always served as a nice counterpoint to the self-congratulatory nature of the Academy Awards.

Now, on Monday night, I’ll be posting what I would nominate if I was in charge of the Oscars but first, I’d like to show you what I’d nominate if I was solely responsible for making the Golden Raspberry nominations.

Now before anyone leaves me any pissy comments, these are not predictions.  I know that these are not the actual nominations.  I know that the actual Golden Raspberry nominations will probably look a lot different.  These are just my individual picks.

(My “winners” are listed in bold print.)

Worst Picture


The Conspirator

Dylan Dog: Dead of Night

The Rum Diary

Straw Dogs

Worst Actor

Daniel Craig in Dream House, Cowboys and Aliens, and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Aaron Eckhardt in Battle: Los Angeles

James Marsden in Straw Dogs

James McAvoy in The Conspirator

Brandon Routh in Dylan Dog: Dead of Night

Worst Actress

Kate Bosworth in Straw Dogs

Anita Briem in Dylan Dog: Dead of Night

Claire Foy in Season of the Witch

Brit Marling in Another Earth

Sara Paxton in Shark Night: 3-D

Worst Supporting Actor

Paul Giamatti in The Ides of March

Mel Gibson (as the Beaver) in The Beaver

Sir Derek Jacobi in Anonymous

Giovanni Ribisi in The Rum Diary

James Woods in Straw Dogs

Worst Supporting Actress

Jennifer Ehle in Contagion

Amber Heard in The Rum Diary

Willa Holland in Straw Dogs

Vanessa Redgrave in Anonymous

Oliva Wilde in Cowboys and Aliens

Worst Director

Roland Emmerich for Anonymous

Rod Lurie for Straw Dogs

Kevin Munroe for Dylan Dog: Dead of Night

Robert Redford for The Conspirator

Bruce Robinson for The Rum Diary

Worst Screenplay

Anonymous, written by John Orloff.

Another Earth, written by Mike Cahill and Brit Marling

The Beaver, written by Kyle Killen

Dylan Dog: Dead of Night, written by Thomas Dean Donnelly and Joshua Oppenheimer.

Straw Dogs, written by Rod Lurie.

(That’s right, it’s a tie.)

Worst Screen Couple 

Rhys Ifans and Joeley Richardson in Anonymous

Rhys Ifans and Vanessa Redgrave in Anonymous

Brit Marling and any breathing creature in Another Earth

Mel Gibson and The Beaver in The Beaver

James Marsden and Kate Bosworth in Straw Dogs

Worst Prequel, Sequel, or Remake


The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Scream 4

Straw Dogs

Transformers 3

Lisa Marie’s 16 Worst Films of 2011


Now that 2011 is finally over, we here at the Shattered Lens can finally get around to listing our individual picks for the best and worst of 2011.  Pantsukadasai, Necromoonyeti, Leon Th3 Duke, and Dazzling Erin have already posted some of their picks for the best of 2011 and over the next five days, I’ll be risking your scorn by listing some of my own choices.

I’d like to get things started today by listening my picks for the 16 worst films of 2011.  As always, these choices are mine and mine alone.  So, don’t go harassing Arleigh just because you think Another Earth wasn’t a pretentious and silly film.  Instead, harass me so I can harass you back. 🙂

16) Battle L.A. — It takes a special type of film to make Skyline look like a work of art.

15) Cowboys and Aliens — Meh.  This should have been so much more fun than it actually was.

14) Your Highness — I still love James Franco.

13)  Shark Night 3-D — Another film that should have been a lot more fun.

12) Season of the Witch — The first film I saw in 2011 was also one of the worst.

11) The Ides of March — Hey guys, did you know that politics is a dirty business!?  Oh my God, consider my fragile mind blown.  Thank you for clearing things up, George Clooney!

10) Another Earth — Honestly, Another Earth probably wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the way that so many of the toadsuckers out there get so superior and condescending whenever they’re telling me that I should love this movie.  If you read the comments under my linked review of the film, you’ll find a very good defence of the film from Leon and then you’ll find a more typical response from some idiot named Naresh Raj Shrestha.  Unfortunately, Naresh seems to be a fair representation of most of the people who take to the Internet to defend this film.  All I can say to those people is “Fuck off, kids.  I’ve got real movies to worry about.”

9) Dream House — Daniel Craig.  Again.

8) Contagion — So.  Boring.

7) The Beaver — So. Stupid.

6) Priest — Yeah, yeah, it’s in 3-D.  Yay.

5) Dylan Dog: Dead of Night — This film sucks just as much as you think it does.

4) The Rum Diary — Is it possible to make a boring movie with one of the exciting movie stars in the world?  Apparently, it is.

3) The Conspirator — Self-important drivel that was released at least four years too late.

2) Straw Dogs — Tell ’em about the Southland, Rod Lurie!

And finally, here’s the worst film of 2011…

1) Anonymous — One thing is for sure.  Whoever wrote Shakespeare’s plays, he was a lot more talented than Roland Emmerich.

Coming up tomorrow: my ten favorite songs of 2011.

The National Board of Review Gives It Up For “Hugo”


It took them a while but, earlier today, the folks who made up the National Board of Review (nobody’s quite sure who they are) finally announced their picks for the best of 2011.  And the winner is — Martin Scorsese’s Hugo!  As anyone who was on twitter earlier today knows, this was something of a surprising result and most of the self-appointed film experts out there seemed to be convinced that the NBR would honor either War Horse or The Artist.  Seeing as it took the NBR longer than usual to announce the winners, I’m assuming that the voting was fairly close.  The NBR is usually considered to be a precursor to the Academy Awards so, if nothing else, this result would seem to bode well for Hugo‘s chances to pick up a best picture nomination.  Here are the winners with the occasional editorial comment from me:

Best Film:

(I loved Hugo, though my favorite film of the year remains, at this point, Hanna)

Best Director:
Martin Scorsese, Hugo

Best Actor:
George Clooney, The Descendants

(I may be the only person in America who thinks that The Descendants is overratedCertainly, the members of the NBR disagree with me on that point.)

Best Actress:
Tilda Swinton, We Need to Talk About Kevin

(This was kind of surprising since I think the conventional wisdom was that Meryl Streep would win everything for The Irony Lady.)

Best Supporting Actor:
Christopher Plummer, Beginners

(I have a feeling that Plummer’s going to be the sentimental favorite at the Oscars.)
Best Supporting Actress:
Shailene Woodley, The Descendants

Best Original Screenplay:
Will Reiser, 50/50

(Yay!  This film has been strangely underrated as an awards contender but it deserves a lot more attention.)

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon & Jim Rash, The Descendants

Best Animated Feature:

(Another yay!)
Breakthrough Performance:
Felicity Jones, Like Crazy

Breakthrough Performance
Rooney Mara, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

(Bleh.  On twitter, I already went into a rant about how too many of my fellow film bloggers have allowed themselves to be co-opted into a conspiracy to both  force The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo remake down our throats and to try to make us forget about the original trilogy and the fact that Noomi Rapace gave a brilliant performance as Lisbeth.  I’ll hold off on going into that again until it’s time to review the remake but seriously, people — the Hollywood establishment is not going to give you a promise ring, I don’t care how much you kiss their ass.)

Debut Director:
J.C. Chandor, Margin Call

Best Ensemble:
The Help

(Believe it or not, I still need to see this one.)

Spotlight Award
Michael Fassbender (A Dangerous Method, Jane Eyre, Shame, X-Men: First Class)

(Oh. My. God.  So.  Hot.)

NBR Freedom of Expression
Crime After Crime

NBR Freedom of Expression:

Best Foreign Language Film:
A Separation

Best Documentary:
Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory

Special Achievement in Filmmaking:
The Harry Potter Franchise – A Distinguished Translation from Book
to Film

(This is probably my favorite award to be given out by NBR.  Seriously, the Harry Potter franchise provided me — and so many others — such a blessed escape whenever life seemed overwhelming.)

Top Films (in alphabetical order)

The Artist (Can’t Wait To See It)
The Descendants
Drive (Yay!)
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Bleh)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (Yay!)
The Ides of March (One of the worst films of the year)
J. Edgar (Bland and forgettable but well-made)
Tree of Life
War Horse
(Going to see it but I feel obligated to do so and I resent it, to be honest)

Top 5 Foreign Language Films (in alphabetical order)

13 Assassins
Elite Squad: The Enemy Within
Le Havre
Point Blank

Top 5 Documentaries (in alphabetical order)

Born to be Wild
George Harrison: Living in the Material World
Project Nim

Top 10 Independent Films (in alphabetical order)

50/50 (Yay!)
Another Earth
(Whatever, this was a terrible movie)
Beginners (A good film that deserves to be seen)
A Better Life
Cedar Rapids (Likable but nothing spectacular)
Margin Call
(Need to see it)
Take Shelter
We Need To Talk About Kevin
(Looking forward to it)
Win Win

2011 Gotham Awards Recap

In my previous post, I announced the start of “Oscar season” by offering up a recap of the films and performers honored by the New York Film Critics Circle earlier today.  However, the Oscar season was actually kicked off on Monday night with the Gotham Awards.  Much like the Independent Spirit awards, the Gothams are meant to honor the best in the year’s independent films.  Below is a recap of which films were honored at this year’s ceremony.

Best Feature

The Tree of Life(tie)

Best Ensemble Performance


Best Breakthrough Actor/Actress

Felicity JonesLike Crazy

Best Breakthrough Director

Dee ReesPariah

Best Documentary

Better This World

Best Film Not Playing at a Theater Near You

Scenes of a Crime

The big news here has been that Beginners and Tree of Life tied for best picture.  (Actually, I’m not surprised as both films pretty much explored the same themes of memory, aging, and love.)  It’ll be interesting to see if either one of these films manage to maintain the momentum of their victory through the rest of the Oscar season. 

As for me, I have a new mission and that is to see Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same.

Lisa Marie Is Disappointed With Another Earth (dir. by Mike Cahill)

As I’ve mentioned on this site a few times, I was really excited about seeing the new independent sci-fi film Another Earth.  Well, I finally saw it and wow.  What a disappointment!

Another Earth is a film about an intelligent teenage girl (Brit Marling) who gets a scholarship to M.I.T.  She goes out to celebrate and while drunkenly driving home, she hears a report on the radio that a new planet has been discovered.  Looking out the window of her car, she spots the new planet while, at the same time, smashing into another car and killing the wife and son of composer William Mapother.  Mapother is put in a coma and Marling ends up getting sentenced to prison.

Four years later, Marling is released from jail.  She gets a job working as a janitor in her old high school.  She also tracks down Mapother, who has come out of his coma and has no idea that Marling is the girl who killed his family.  Through a couple of plot contrivances that makes less sense the more you think about them, Marling becomes Mapother’s maid.  Though Mapother is, at first, surly towards her, he soon falls in love with her because otherwise, nothing would happen in the movie.

Meanwhile, it turns out that the new planet is actually a mirror Earth!  Wow, isn’t that exciting?  Well, no one on “Earth 1” seems to be all the excited about it.  Don’t get me wrong — they talk about it a lot and we got a lot of monologues about the possibilities of a mirror Earth and how we’ve all apparently got a double on this other Earth but still, everyone’s just kinda like “Oh, that’s neat.”  Anyway, Marling wants to go to the new Earth to see if the alternate her is doing any better than her.  Luckily, there’s a Richard Branson-type billionaire who is having an essay contest to win a chance to take a civilian flight to the new Earth.  We’re told that this civilian flight will be the first to land on Earth 2, which I guess can only mean that the Earth 1 equivalent of Barack Obama really did a number of Earth 1’s version of NASA.

Another Earth isn’t necessarily a terrible film but it certainly is a disappointing one.  The film is essentially a collection of indie film clichés that are all held together with an intriguing premise.  Unfortunately, the only thing intriguing about the finished film is thinking about how great it could have been if director Mike Cahill and screenwriter (and star) Brit Marling had actually bothered to explore any of the film’s issues beyond a surface level.  Mapother does a good job playing his surly role but he has next to no chemistry with Marling and you never, for a minute, believe in their relationship.  When Marling isn’t lying to Mapother, she’s bonding with a blind janitor from India who only speaks in philosophical one liners.  Why is the janitor in the film?  Why does he suddenly decide to mentor Marling?  Why does he drink bleach?  There’s also a really embarrassing scene where Marling talks on the phone with a guy doing a really over-the-top imitation of Richard Branson.  Director Cahill offers up endless montages of Marling looking pretty and sad as she wanders around aimlessly and he’s got the whole shaky cam, zoom lens thing down but he doesn’t seem to understand that images are empty without some sort of honest emotion behind them.  

That said, the film does have a great ending, an ending which hints at the film that Another Earth could have been.

Coming soon: Bleh, Agck, and Yay! (And don’t forget Harry Potter!)

When you go to the movies as much as I do, you realize and very quickly accept that you’re going to end up seeing certain trailers a few thousand times before you actually get to see the film being advertised.  (By this point, I can pretty much recite that trailer for Cowboys and Aliens by heart.)  In the case of a good trailer, this can make an otherwise forgettable film into a must-see event.  And, in the case of a bad trailer, it can literally make you shout out at “Agck!” at the thought of having to sit through it again.

What follows are three trailers that, as of late, I’ve found myself sitting through on multiple occasions.  The first one makes me go “bleh,” the second makes me say “Agck,” and the third inspires a cautious but hopeful little “Yay!”

First off, here’s Page One.  This is one of those trailers that you look at and you think, “Everyone in this trailer is so physically unattractive that this must be a documentary.”  And it  is!

I have a feeling that Page One is going to be widely acclaimed and it’ll probably win awards from the same people who thought the shrill Inside Job was more thought-provoking than Exit From The Gift Shop.  That said, I can’t help but admit that watching this trailer inspires me to say, “Who cares?”  Seriously, yet another documentary where a bunch of old people whine about how they’re no longer relavent?  Yeah, sounds thrilling.

In fact, the prospect of sitting through Page One sounds almost as thrilling as sitting through a movie, made by the same people who gave us 2012 and The Day After Tomorrow,  about the authorship of Shakespeare’s plays. 

Anonymous, I imagine, will be quite popular with people who found the Da Vinci Code to be a mind-blowing experience.

Luckily, all is not lost.  True, it does appear that we’ve got a lot of Anonymous films in our future, but we’ve also got Another Earth.

I have to admit that, just on the basis of this trailer (which I’ve caught a handful times down at both the Dallas and Plano Angelika theaters), Another Earth is the film that I’m probably most looking forward to seeing (with the exception, of course, of Harry Potter.)   When compared to the self-importance of the trailer for Page One and the almost comical slickness of the trailer for Anonymous, the the low-key aesthetic of the trailer for Another Earth feels almost defiant.

Obviously, there have been many bad films that have had wonderfully effective trailers.  In fact, I’d be willing to say that 75% of most movies actually work better as a 2 minute trailer as opposed to as a 2-hour film.  And some good films have had terrible trailers.

In theory, Page One could turn out to be the greatest documentary since Exit Through The Gift Shop and maybe Anonymous will prove that Roland Emmerich is actually an artist as opposed to just a wealthy pyromaniac.  I certainly hope that’s the case because, believe it or not, I’d much rather sit through a good film than a bad one. 

However, on the basis of trailer alone, of all the upcoming films that don’t feature Harry Potter and Voldermort, Another Earth is the film I’m most looking forward to.

Speaking of which, here’s the 2nd trailer for the film of 2011: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2: