Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Special Edition: The Professionals' Telluride/Telluride and Toronto: Some Assessments

Good Tuesday Everyone,

Today's post is a special edition of Michael's Telluride Film Blog as after today I'll revert back to the more common practice of posting twice a week.  MTFB's regular posting schedule for nine months of the year (Mid-September to mid-June) is on Mondays and Thursdays.  It's time to go back to that schedule as we make the turn from our post TFF #41 experience into the film awards season.  As has become the norm, this space will now set out to track the fortunes of Telluride films through the maze leading up to and including the Oscars (announced on Feb. 22, 2015).  After all, the second half of what I call this thing is "The Film Awards Clearinghouse".

As always, should circumstances warrant, I will post with more frequency than the twice-a-week schedule.

I hope everyone enjoyed this year's coverage of the speculation leading up to the 41st Telluride Film Festival.


Alejandro Inarritu’s “Birdman” leads the 2014 “Professionals” ratings from Telluride. 

The Professionals:

Alex Billington/FirstShowing
Greg Ellwood/HitFix
Tomris Laffley/Film Journal
Eugene Novikov/Film Blather
John Rhodes/Screencraft
Sasha Stone/Awards Daily
Kristopher Tapley/In Contention
Anne Thompson/Thompson on Hollywood/IndieWire

I asked the Porfessionals to rate the films they saw at Telluride (or that had played both at Cannes and Telluride) on a 0-5 scale with “0” being abysmal and “5” being a masterpiece.  I arbitrarily decided to include films that had been seen by at least a third of the Professionals.  I have listed the films in order of their average rating and included that average in parenthesis). Here’s their collective wisdom:

    1)      Birdman (4.72)
    2)      Foxcatcher (4.63)
          3)      ’71 (4.25)
          4)      Wild Tales (4.20)
          5)      Leviathan (4.17)
          6)      Mr. Turner (4.10) 
          7)      The Imitation Game (4.06)
          8)      Mommy (3.92)
          9)      Two Days, One Night (3.90)
         10)    The Homesman (3.80)
         11)    Red Army (3.67)
         12)    Madame Bovary (3.30)
         13)    Wild (3.21)
         14)    Rosewater (3.06)

          And so "Birdman" emerges as the preferred film among the professionals.  On Thursday, I'll publish the People's Telluride results.  That means you still have time to send me your ratings to be included.  Rate the films you saw on a 0-5 scale and send them to me via Twitter (@Gort2), email: michael_speech@hotmail.com or as a comment to this blog.

       I can tell you that there will be some differences between The Pros and The People.

       Next Monday I'll also publish the combined ratings in which I'll use all the ratings from the professionals and us regular Joes.



      Now that the first "World Premiere" weekend of Toronto is in the books, a number of media outlets have begun weighing in with their view about the efficacy of Toronto's 2014 edict concerning films that played Telluride first.  I have included links to three of those pieces here from The Hollywood Reporter, Variety and The Chicago Tribune.

      Tatiana Siegel writing in THR writes, "there's little doubt that Toronto Film Festival director Cameron Bailey's anti-Telluride policy is having a chilling effect on the Oscar prowess of the first days"




           More on Thursday!


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