Monday, September 28, 2015

Your First Film Awards Clearinghouse foe 2015-16 / Breaking Down Possible Nominations / Oscar Poker / Malala in New York

It's Monday!  Back to the grind!


Oscar season is unapologetically upon us.  You can lament the early start and the long campaign, and many do, but that won't change the fact that it's here...

So, here's your first look at The FAC in the four "biggest" categories: Best Picture, Director, Actress and Actor.

As I have done in the past, I collate the publicly posted predictions of some of best Oscar experts in the business and then crunch the numbers to come up with The FAC consensus.  This year we begin with information from:

Erik Anderson/Awards Watch
Clayton Davis/Awards Circuit
Scott Feinberg/The Hollywood Reporter
Peter Knegt/Indiewire
Joey Magidson/Hollywood News
Nathaniel Rogers/Film Experience
Sasha Stone/Awards Daily
Kristopher Tapley/Variety-InContention
Anne Thompson/Thompson on Hollywood

TFF #42 films are in Bold.


1) Spotlight
2) The Revenant
3) Steve Jobs
4) The Danish Girl
5) Bridge of Spies
6) Carol
7) Brooklyn
8) Joy
9) The Hateful Eight
10) Room
11) The Martian
12) Inside Out

Comment: Telluride films look good early to land three Best Picture nominations (Spotlight, Steve Jobs. Carol) with a shot for a fourth (Room) and outside possibilities for Son of Saul, Beasts of No Nation and Black Mass.

Look out for The Martian.


1) Tom McCarthy/Spotlight
2) Alejandro Inarritu/The Revenant
3) Danny Boyle/Steve Jobs
4) Todd Haynes/Carol
5) Steven Spielberg/Bridge of Spies
6) David O. Russell/Joy
7) Quentin Tarantino/The Hateful Eight
8) Tom Hooper/The Danish Girl
9) Cary Fukunaga/Beasts of No Nation
10) George Miller/Mad Max:Fury Road

Comment: I actually think Tom Hooper's relative weakness here may indicate that The Danish Girl isn't as much of a Best Pic lock as the BP FAC chart indicates.


1) Jennifer Lawrence/Joy
2) Brie Larson/Room
3) Carey Mulligan/Suffragette
4) Cate Blanchett/Carol
5) Saorise Ronan/Brooklyn
6) Charlotte Rampling/45 Years
7) Cate Blanchett/Truth
8) Alicia Vikander/The Danish Girl
9) Lily Tomlin/Grandma
10) Maggie Smith/Lady in the Van

Comment: Could Blanchett get two separate nominations?  Maybe.


1) Leonardo DiCaprio/The Revenant
2) Eddie Redmayne/The Danish Girl
3) Michael Fassbender/Steve Jobs
4) Johnny Depp/Black Mass
5) Michael Caine/Youth
6) Matt Damon/The Martian
7) Tom Hanks/Bridge of Spies
8) Bryan Cranston/Trumbo
9) Will Smith/Concussion
10) Steve Carrel/The Big Short

Comment: The top four spots are really tightly bunched together.  The battle for that last spot could be intense!


I took a look at a selected foursome of the above Oscar experts to see what they were predicting at this point for particular TFF #42 films.  None of them have a complete list for every single category (Feinberg, for example, has posted his analysis for 11 categories) so keep that in mind.

Here's what they are predicting as of this week:

Clayton Davis/Awards Circuit;

Carol: Best Picture, Director, Actress, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay, Production Design, Costumes, Makeup/Hair and Score.  That's nine nominations!

Spotlight: Best Picture, Director, Supporting Actor (Ruffalo)***, Original Screenplay and Film Editing.  Total: Six.  The announcement this week that all members of the Spotlight cast will be campaigned as Supporting players  could change some things.  It had been reported that Open Road was looking at Ruffalo as a possible Lead Actor candidate and there has been some discussion that Michael Keaton might be the natural Lead Actor choice.  Now, it seems neither of those things are likely.  I suspect over the next few weeks that Keaton will show up more and more in the Supporting category from the prediction experts.

Steve Jobs: Best Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay, Film Editing. Total: Six.

Room: Best Picture, Actress.  Total: Two

Son of Saul: Best Foreign Film, Original Screenplay.  Total: Two

Black Mass: Actor
Suffragette: Actress
Beasts of No Nation:Supporting Actor
Anomalisa: Animated Film

TFF #42 Total: 29

Scott Feinberg/The Hollywood Reporter:

Spotlight: Best Picture, Director, Supporting Actor, Original Screenplay

Steve Jobs: Best Picture, Actor, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay

Room: Best Picture, Actress, Adapted Screenplay

Carol: Best Actress, Supporting Actress

Black Mass: Actor, Supporting Actor

45 Years: Actress

Anomalisa: Animated Film
Seymour; An Introduction (from TFF #41): Documentary

Total TFF #42 nominations: 17 (in 11 categories)

Sasha Stone/Awards Daily:

Carol: Best Picture, Director, Actress, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay, Cinematography, Production Design, Costumes.  Total-8

Spotlight: Best Picture, Director, Supporting Actor, Original Screenplay, Film Editing.  Total-5

Steve Jobs: Best Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay.  Total-5

Room: Best Picture, Actress

Beats of No Nation: Supporting Actor, Adapted Screenplay

Suffragette: Actress, Costumes

Anomalisa: Animated, Original Screenplay

Son of Saul; Foreign Language, Sound Mixing

Black Mass; Actor
45 Years: Actress
Winter on Fire: Documentary
The Look of Silence (TFF #41): Documentary

Total for TFF #42: 31

Kristopher Tapley/Variety/InContention

Steve Jobs: Best Picture, Director, Actor, Supporting Actor, Adapted Screenplay and Film Editing. Total-6

Spotlight: Best Picture, Director, Supporting Actor, Original Screenplay and Film Editing.  Total-5.

Black Mass: Best Picture, Actor, Supporting Actor, Makeup.  Total-4.

Room: Best Picture, Actress, Adapted Screenplay.  Total-3.

Carol: Supporting Actress, Costumes, Production Design.  Total-3

45 Years: Best Actress
Anomalisa: Animated Feature
Son of Saul: Foreign Language
Rams: Foreign Language
Viva: Foreign Language
The Look of Silence (TFF #41): Documentary

TFF #42 Total: 26


I have included the link to the ltest Oscar Poker podcast from Sasha Stone/Awards Daily and Jeffrey Wells/Hollywood Elsewhere:


Nobel Peace Prize winner and subject of the documentary "He Named Me Malala", Malala Yousafzai has been in New York for the past few days for the NYFF premiere of the doc, to speak to the U.N. She also made an appearance on Stephen Colbert's new Late Show.  "Malala" first screened at Telluride with director Davis Guggenheim and Malala's father Ziauddin on hand.

Malala talked to Paul Chi of Variety at the premiere of the film:

That's all for this Monday.  Back on Thursday with more...

And don't be afraid to contact me: OR OR

via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Final Tabulation / Oscar Predictions Coming into Focus after Toronto / New Looks at Films You May Have Already Seen; "Steve Jobs" and "Suffragette"

Glad you're back for this Thursday edition of MTFB.


For hoots, I've decided to add one more numerical review of the films that have played at Telluride and include the data from all three of the years that I have been doing the Composite Telluride.  I thought it might be interesting to see what the collective wisdom had concluded were the best films when all three years were considered together.  So, here are the top ten films from the last three fests according to The Composite Telluride (the combination of both The People's Telluride and The Professionals Telluride).

The films are listed in reverse order from #10 to the top spot and the year they appeared at T-ride and their composite rank are in parenthesis:

10) Wild Tales ('14/8.43)
9) Beasts of No Nation ('15/8.62)
8) Son of Saul ('15/8.74)
7) Gravity ('13/8.75)
6) The Imitation Game ('14/8.79)
5) Foxcatcher ('14/8.83)
4) Spotlight ('15/8.86)
3) Tim's Vermeer ('13/8.97)
2) Birdman ('14/9.18)
1) 12 Years a Slave ('13/9.25)


Telluride's done.  Venice is done.  Now Toronto is done.  The pundits start to get serious now.  I have linked a number of early season, post fall fest Oscar predictions in this section of today's post>  Starting with Matthew Jacobs and The Huffington Post.  HP suggests that Telluride's influence will be seen in major nominations as follows:

Best Picture: "Carol", "Room", "Spotlight" and "Steve Jobs"
Best Actress: Blanchett/"Carol", Larson/"Room". Rampling/"45 Years"
Best Actor: Depp/"Black Mass", Fassbender/"Steve Jobs"
Best Supporting Actress: Mara/"Carol", Winslet/"Steve Jobs"
Best Supporting Actor: Elba/"Beasts of No Nation", Keaton/"Spotlight"
Best Direction: Boyle/"Steve Jobs", McCarthy/"Spotlight"

The complete rundown of Jacobs/HP's predictions is here:

Vulture's Kyle Buchanan's latest Oscar assessment looks like this from a Telluride perspective:

Best Picture: "Carol", "Son of Saul", "Spotlight", "Steve Jobs"
Director: Boyle/"Steve Jobs", Haynes/"Carol", McCarthy/"Spotlight"
Actor: Fassbender/"Steve Jobs", Rohrig/"Son of Saul"
Actress: Blanchett/"Carol", "Larson/"Room", Rampling/"45 Years"
Supporting Actor: Elba/"Beasts of No Nation", Rogen/"Steve Jobs", "Ruffalo/"Spotlight
Supporting Actress: Mara/"Carol", "Winslet/"Steve Jobs"

Check Buchanan's complete post here:

Meanwhile, post-Toronto, Gold Derby has seen a spike in the popularity of "Spotlight" as a possible Best Picture winner.  It has moved to the top of their collective prediction chart at odds of  11 to 2 to win the big prize.  Other T-ride films making some noise and their odds are:

"Steve Jobs" 8 to 1
"Carol" 14 to 1
"Room" 22 to 1
"Beasts of No Nation" 33 to 1
"Black Mass" 50 to 1
"Suffragette" 80 to 1
"Son of Saul" 80 to 1
"45 Years" 100 to 1

Looking at their other odds for other major categories, their collective consciousness suggests nods for TFF #42 alumni as follows:

Director: McCarthy/"Spotlight", Haynes/"Carol, and Boyle/Steve Jobs"
Actor: Fassbender/"Steve Jobs", Depp/"Black Mass"
Actress: Blanchett/"Carol", Larson/"Room" and Mulligan/"Suffragette"
Supporting Actor: Keaton/"Spotlight", Elba/"Beasts of No Nation" and Edgerton/"Black Mass"
Supporting Actress: Mara/"Carol", Winslet/"Steve Jobs"
Original Screenplay: "Spotlight"
Adapted Screenplay: "Steve Jobs", "Carol" and "Room"

Complete Gold Derby coverage is here:

And, while not exactly awards coverage, Metacritic put up a large article this week that measured the critical response from a number of high profile films that played in some combination of the fall fest trifecta.  From that post, these Telluride films were included (and I have included their Metacritic average score):

"Anomalisa" 99
"Beasts of No Nation" 82
"He Named Me Malala" 59
"Heart of a Dog" 71
"Room" 74
"Spotlight" 81
"Steve Jobs" 84
"Suffragette" 65

The complete Metacritic rundown is here:


Here is new video with a second "Steve Jobs" trailer and a clip from "Suffragette" via YouTube accompanied by stories about their releases this past week:



That's all for this Thursday.  I'll have more on Monday...have a great weekend!

And don't be afraid to contact me: OR OR

via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Monday, September 21, 2015

The Composite Telluride / Telluride Films Dominate in Toronto / Viva for Ireland / Notes from a Telluride First Timer

Welcome back from the weekend, my friends...It's Monday and we're all back at it (if we ever actually stopped)...


 I have been collecting a semblance of critical response about Telluride's films each if the last four years with both The Professionals (called The Critic's Telluride in the first incarnation in  2012) and the People.  In 2013, I also began combining the ratings from both sets of responses to get and even broader perspective on the films that had played the festival.

In 2013 the top five composite films were:

1) 12 Years a Slave (9.25)
2) Tim's Vermeer (8.97)
3) Gravity (8.75)
4) Nebraska (8.38)
5) All is Lost (8.26)

In 2014 the top five were:

1) Birdman (9.18)
2) Foxcatcher (8.83)
3) The Imitation Game (8.79)
4) Wild Tales (8.43)
5) '71 (8.15)'s the Composite Telluride combining the ratings from The Pros and The Peeps.  There were a total of 11 films that were shared by sufficient ratings from both groups to make the composite list ...drum roll please...

1) Spotlight (8.86)
2) Son of Saul (8.74)
3) Beasts of No Nation (8.62)
4) Steve Jobs (8.17)
5) Carol (8.13)
6) Black Mass (7.98)
7) Room (7.97)
8) 45 Years (7.84)
9) Anomalisa (7.78)
10) Suffragette (7.07)
11) He Named Me Malala (6.22)

"Ixcanul", "Marguerite" and "Rams" made the Peoples list (the criteria being that at least a third of respondents had to have included a film in their ratings to make the list).  Meanwhile, The Pros included "Time to Choose" and "Taxi" but The People did not.

The greatest agreement between the groups was the relatively low ratings for both "Suffragette" and "He Named Me Malala".  The largest disparity came on the films "Room" and "Anomalisa".  The People loved "Room" but the Pros significantly less warm about the film.  On the other hand, The Pros loved Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson's "Anomalisa" (their #2) and it was the lowest rated film that made the People's list.

Other notes:

I pointed out last Thursday that the #2 spot on all three previous People's ratings had gone on to win Best Picture.  I should point out, that, as you can see above, the first 2013 and 2014 leaders in the Composite  ratings were those same films ("12 Years a Slave" and "Birdman").  Does this bode well for "Spotlight"?  That's a "Maybe".  There are still a lot of BIG films that no one has seen yet that could be big time Oscar players: "The Revenant", "Hateful 8", "Joy", "Bridge of Spies", "In the Heart of the Sea"...others.

Still, I've certainly said it since Telluride weekend, if there is a film that would keep the T-ride Oscar streak alive, "Spotlight" is it.

Something else you almost certainly noticed is that "Spotlight" is the lowest rated #1 film of these three years.  As a matter for fact, it would have been at #3 on the 2013 list behind both "12 Years a Slave" and "Tim's Vermeer".

Follow all the developments concerning Telluride 2015 films and the awards season here at MTFB/The Film Awards Clearinghouse.

I'm currently planning a preliminary first run of The FAC in the next week to ten days.


The Toronto International Film Festival announced its prize winners yesterday and films that played as a part of Telluride's lineup did very well.  Lenny Abarhamson's "Room" took top honors, the People's Choice Award and TIFF film goers also chose TFF #42 documentary "Winter on Fire" won the People's prize for Best Doc.  Tom McCarthy's "Spotlight", also a TFF #42 choice was 2nd runner-up in the main category.

Complete TIFF winners are here:


Ireland has announced that it will submit TFF #42 film "Viva" as its official entrant into the Best Foreign Language Oscar sweepstakes.  To the best of my knowledge, it becomes the fourth TFF #42 film to be so designated following "Son of Saul" from Hungary, "Rams" from Iceland and "Ixcanul" from Guatemala.

I have included coverage of the Irish announcement here from The Hollywood Reporter, IFTN and RTE:


Do you remember your first Telluride experience?  I remember mine.  The wife and I had really very little idea what we had been invited to.  We arrived half way through the fest in 2006 and had been gifted a handful of individual passes.  We stood in line at The Chuck on Saturday evening after some confusion about the whole "Q" process and then got in and got seated.

We knew a bit about the film we were about to see but not a ton.  We shifted in our seats anxiously and then the venues MC approached the mic to introduce the film, which I fully expected, and then, to our surprise, the director was introduced.  The director was Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu and the film was "Babel".  As Inarritu began to talk about why he made the film, I turned to Kristy and we made eye contact...big, wide-eyed eye contact...this was clearly something special.

We moved through the remainder of the weekend in awe and when our hosts if we'd like to come back in 2007, our response was an overwhelming YES!

I expect most of us who attend Telluride with regularity have some similar story.

So. with that in mind, let me direct you to Kenny Miles.  Mr. Miles attended TFF for the first time this year.  The Denver based film critic and writer also served as a part of The Professionals rating this year's films.  Kenny posted last week about his first TFF experience and also wrote a bit about his inclusion on the MTFB Pros raring cavalcade.  It's a fun read.  Check it out here:

That's a wrap for this Monday.  The next post comes Thursday with a new feature.  I'll put together the top ten films from the last three Tellurides from the composite ratings that we've seen.

And don't be afraid to contact me: OR OR

via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Thursday, September 17, 2015

The People's Telluride / "Amazing Grace" Saga Continues / Oscar Matters

It's Thursday and time for another episode of Michael's Telluride Film Blog/The Film Awards Clearinghouse...


Ten days after the conclusion of TFF #42, I have the results of the fourth annual "People's Telluride". Since the fests close, I have been gathering the data that Telluride film followers have been sending my way since then.  Over two dozen respondents sent their evaluations.  Using the same criteria as I did for The Professionals Telluride, films were collated only of they received evaluations from at least a third of those respondents.  With that, here are the results of The People with the rating average in parenthesis:

1) Room (4.47)
2) Spotlight (4.45)
3) Beasts of No Nation (4.35)
4) Ixcanul (4.31)
5) Son of Saul (4.30)
6) Marguerite (4.23)
7) Black Mass (4.13)
8) Carol (4.02)
9) Rams (3.98)
10) Steve Jobs (3.86)
11) 45 Years (3.78)
12) Suffragette (3.58)
13) He Named Me Malala (3.39)
14) Anomalisa (3.36)

The People included three films that the Pros did not: "Ixcanul", "Marguerite" and "Rams".  The Pros had "Taxi" and "Time to Choose" on their list that The People excluded.

The biggest agreement between the sets of data came toward the bottom of the list as The Pros and The People both placed "Suffragette" and "He Named Me Malala" at the #12 and #13 spots respectively.

The greatest disparity came at the top and bottom and vice versa for each set of data.  The People really loved "Room" as it reigns at the top of the People's list but The Pros had it as their #11 film (of 13).  Meanwhile, the Pros were all about Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson's "Anomalisa" rating it #2 (just behind "Son of Saul") but the People had it at the bottom of their list at #14 (of 14).

Last year The People preferred "The Imitation Game" with a stellar 4.73 rating.  "Birdman" was #2 with a rating of 4.46.

In 2013, "Tim's Vermeer" led the People's poll with a 4.67 rating and "12 Years a Slave" was second with a rating of 4.55.

In 2012, "Stories We Tell was tops with a 4.80 closely followed by "Argo" with a 4.75.

Coming on Monday...The Combo Telluride...what happens when we put the two lists together?  We shall see.

Seems to me that being #2 on The People's Telluride is a real harbinger as "Argo", "12 Years a Slave" and "Birdman" all won the Best Picture Oscar.  So if you're Tom McCarthy and the crew from "Spotlight"...maybe a sign of things to come.


The legal saga that began at Telluride on its opening day between the producer of "Amazing Grace" and its subject, Aretha Franklin.  Took a new twist this week.  Franklin sued in Colorado court and obtained an injunction on T-ride's opening day which torpedoed the planned screening of the documentary just hours before it was set to appear.

Subsequently, planned screenings at both the Toronto and Chicago Film Fests were also scuttled.  This week, amid reports that the film was about to be screened privately for prospective distributors brought yet another threat to sue from Franklin and her lawyers.

In light of all this, producer Alan Elliot has agreed to a 30 day moratorium on screening of the film. Speculation is that the 30 day hold will  be used for both sides to negotiate terms under which the film could be screened.

Here's the story from Variety:


MTFB continues to make its annual transition from a Telluride film prediction outlet to a Telluride film in the awards season blog by looking at the latest and best prediction professionals and what they are saying after Telluride, Venice and now that Toronto is winding down.

Gold Derby shows a sharp rise for "Spotlight" and "Steve Jobs" from the Telluride plays and reactions.  Meanwhile, Sasha Stone reports that Vulture's Kyle Buchanan has claimed that "Spotlight" is out front in the Oscar race right now.  Take a look at both stories here:

Gold Derby


More on Monday including The Combination Telluride...combining of the Professionals and The People's Telluride.  Contact me at: OR OR

via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Monday, September 14, 2015

The Professionals Telluride / Speaking of Saul / Tis the Season...For Oscar Speculation / Rate the Films!

Welcome to Monday...a week removed from the conclusion of TFF #42 and it already seems too long ago and, of course, too long until TFF #43.


The Pros have spoken.  The results below after a word or two.

In all 13 additional professionals were kind enough to lend their input to this project, now in its fourth incarnation.  Mark Johnson of was a late entry to the project and I was happy to add his voice to those of the others.

The compete list of professionals is as follows:

Nick Allen/Chicago Film Critics Assn. member/
Alex Billington/
David Ehrlich/Time Out New York
Greg Ellwood/HitFix
Scott Feinberg/The Hollywood Reporter
Eric Kohn/Indiewire
Mark Johnson/
Tomris Laffly/Movie Mezzanine/Film Journal
Kenny Miles/The Movie Blog
Christopher Schiller/
Sasha Stone/Awards Daily
Kristopher Tapley/Variety/InContention
Anne Thompson/Thompson on Hollywood

You should know that I only included films that received ratings from at least one third of the panel which left films like "Rams" and "Hitchcock/Truffaut just off of the list.  In all 13 films made the cut with enough ratings to be included.

Here are your results for 2015 with their cumulative rating following in parenthesis:

1) Son of Saul (4.44)
2) Anomalisa (4.42)
3) Spotlight (4.41)
4) Steve Jobs (4.31)
5) Beasts of No Nation (4.27)
6) Carol (4.11)
7) 45 Years (4.06)
8) Taxi (4.00)
9) Black Mass (3.85)
10) Time to Choose (3.57)
11) Room (3.50)
12) Suffragette (3.49)
13) He Named Me Malala (2.83)

"Son of Saul" tops The Professionals poll for TFF #42.  You might recall from last week that "Saul" also topped Indiewrie's Critic's poll for the fest as well.  Compared to past poll leaders, "Saul" lagged a bit.  In 2014 "Birdman" lead the Pros ratings with a combined 4.72.  Even second place film "Foxcatcher" rated better at 4.63.

In 2013, "12 Years a Slave led the way with a 4.7 rating.  In 2012, the first year for the project, "The Central Park Five was on top with a 4.7 rating as well.

Thursday, we'll see how The People compare when I post those results.  If you haven't sent me your is the time as Wednesday at 5pm Pacific Daylight Time is the deadline for inclusion.


The probable front runner for Best Foreign Language Oscar and Cannes Grand Prix winner, "Son of Saul" is also making a splash at Toronto.  That fest started on Sept. 10 and runs until this weekend (The 20th).  The Film Stage linked a 30 minute interview with the films young rookie director, Laszlo Nemes that you can access here:


It has begun and won't end until the end of February.  Oscar season is upon us with Venice and Telluride concluded and Toronto half way over.  What's the Oscar buzz?

Check out Oscar Poker with Sasha Stone/Awards Daily and Jeffrey Wells/Hollywood Elsewhere:

As well as Sasha's first take after Toronto got underway:


via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Friday, September 11, 2015

New Views for Films You May Have Seen / Checking Oscar's Pulse Between Fests / Housekeeping Items

Hello Friday and everyone...


A couple of films have released new trailers in light of their screenings at Telluride last week and one film has added access for a number of clips.  If you didn't see "Carol" or "Room" here's the U.S. trailer for "Carol" from YouTube:

And the new trailer for "Room" also from YouTube:

Stories from FirstShowing and The Hollywood Reporter for these trailers are here:

Meanwhile, The Playlist has eight clips from Scott Cooper's "Black Mass".  Here's there story:


As I have been doing all week, I am linking to a number of articles that have begun the analysis about Oscar and the Awards season.  Today I link to the first podcast about Oscar from The Hollywood Reporter:


So you know...

The Professionals Telluride Film Ratings are coming on Monday.

Voting for The Peoples Telluride will close on Wednesday, Sept. 16th with publication coming the following day.  So, if you want your voice to be heard, get those votes in.

Michael's Telluride Film Blog goes back to a two a week posting proposition in Monday.  I'll publish Mondays and Thursdays next week with special posts coming as the Awards season news dictates.  It will also become, for the next six months and for all practical purposes, The Film Awards Clearinghouse and focus on the Awards trail and how films that played last week as a part of TFF #42 play their part in the coming dance.

Have a great weekend and send your ratings to; OR OR

via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Michael's Telluride Film Blog's Facebook page:

Thursday, September 10, 2015

There is Another...Critic's Collection for Telluride / More Looks at Post_TFF Oscar Analysis / 200,000 Milestone / Rate Your Films

Good Thursday Everyone...


As I finish collecting ratings from the dozen or so industry professionals about their reactions to films that screened at this year's festival, Indiewire/Criticwire has posted a critic's poll of their own.  The Criticwire survey asked its panel to rank the films they saw from first to fifth.

The survey also asked the respondents to make decisions in a number of other categories: Lead and Supporting Performances and Director.  Leaders in those categories were:

Lead: Brie Larson/Room
Supporting: Idris Elba/Beasts of No Nation
Direction: Laszlo Nemes/Son of Saul
Narrative Feature: Son of Saul

Among the critics that were a part of the poll are several which are also playing in MTFB's Professionals Telluride; Nick Allen, Alex Billington, Gregory Ellwood, David Ehrlich, Eric Kohn and Tomris Laffly.

Take a look at the complete survey here:


I'm continuing today to provide readers links to articles/posts from Oscar prognosticators who are gazing into their crystal balls and re-evaluating their preliminary views in light of reactions to the screenings of films at last week's TFF.

Indiewire's Peter Knegt takes a look at seven films that got an Oscar boost here:

And Nigel M. Smith reviews the Oscar field post-Telluride for The Guardian here:


Sometime yesterday Michael's Telluride Film Blog was the recipient of its 200,000th view.  Yeesh.  I know that's small potatoes when compared to, for example, Indiewire but it boggles my mind that this space has been looked at that many times by that many people.

MTFB started in late summer 2008 and crossed the 100,000 view threshold on Sept. 16, 2013.  That means that it took five years to get to that first 100K and almost exactly two years to get to the next 200K

Thanks for reading, everyone.  I hope you find this helpful and useful.  Next goal is a quarter of a million views!

That's it for Thursday...


The People's Telluride publication is just a week away.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

"Amazing Grace" Won't Play Toronto Either / Digging into Awards Season Post-Telluride / "Carol" Score and Interviews / Rate, Rate, Rate

Welcome to Wednesday!

Most of the world that was at Telluride has now returned to home.  Not recovered yet, but getting closer.


Looks like it's all over for the chance to see Sidney Pollack's 1972 documentary "Amazing Grace" at any point along the fall film fest gauntlet.

The film which was set to play Telluride last weekend was pulled at the last minute as a result of an injunction from a Colorado judge.  That decision came late enough in the fests planning that TFF directors were telling journalists that they still were planning on screening the film as late as the press orientation last Friday afternoon.

As the weekend turned into the start of this week word came that it would not screen at the Chicago Film Fest and now it has been removed from the Toronto lineup (TIFF opens on Thursday).

Apparently Toronto decided that the legal battle would not result in the rights to screen the film.

Coverage here from Entertainment Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter, Thompson on Hollywood and ShowBiz411:


I started it yesterday...the transition from MTFB to more of The FAC-Film Awards Clearinghouse, with an overview of TFF #42 films that seemed to have kept or earned their way into at least some level of the conversation about year end awards consideration.  For the next few days, I'll continue to delve into that area with articles, stories and posts that focus on Telluride and awards potential from the experts in the field.

Today I point to a post-Telluride conversation in the second of a series based at The Hollywood Reporter and the early view from Variety/InContention's Kristopher Tapley:


The Film Stage has excerpted portions of the score for Todd Haynes "Carol" as well as interviews with Haynes and and star Rooney Mara.  If you loved "Carol" and many did...this is a great way to re-live some of the film as you wait to re-view it on its release on Nov. 20.


They've begun to show up in my inbox.  The ratings for films from Telluride.  I had about half a dozen from The People yesterday as well as four from The Pros.  Keep them coming in folks!

Please rate each film you saw on a scale of 1-5 with 1 being abysmal and 5 being perfection.  If you want to rate with half points (ex: 4.5) that's cool too.

Send ratings to the comment section of the blog OR OR OR

via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Michael's Telluride Film Blog's Facebook page:

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Evaluation in Two Modes / Switching Gears / Time to Rate the Films and More Gratitude

It's the Tuesday after Labor Day which means, sadly, that Telluride's 42nd Film Festival has drawn to a close.  I spent most of yesterday making the nine and a half hour drive back to the home base in Guymon, OK.  We arrived safe and sound around 7:45.  Hope you all had safe travels (or will have).


First, MTFB and the 42nd Telluride lineup:  Not too bad.

The final Ten Bets last Wednesday morning was 19 for 20 with "Queen of the Desert" being the lone whiff.  Herzog is off making a film.

Could have gotten 20 for 20 had I been more confident in the possibility of Winter on Fire" or "Sherpa".  Nevertheless, 95% at the end is a good grade about anywhere.

However, this year was one of the least impressive from the initial Ten Bets list as it contained only four films that ultimately made the TFF #42 lineup:"Suffragette", "45 Years", "Carol" and "Son of Saul".  So, sometimes, I'm not as smart as I wish I was.

Also, in terms of evaluation, I wasn't shattered/stunned by anything I saw over the weekend but I did like quite a lot.  My list from top to bottom of what I saw :

1) "Black Mass
2) "Spotlight"
3) "Steve Jobs"
4) "Son of Saul"
5) Retour De Flamme (restorations)
6) "He Named Me Malala"
7) "Suffragette"
8) "Taxi"
9) "Carol"
10) "45 Years"

I regret that I didn't get in "Beasts of No Nation" (had to chose between it and "Son of Saul"), "Anomalisa" and "Room".  I also regret not getting in "Marguerite".  Had I been able to hang around Monday, would have gotten those in.


Long time readers of Michael's Telluride Film Blog know that, now that the festival is done, the focus becomes an attempt to follow the ups and downs of the awards season and specifically what happens during these next few months with regard to the films that we saw these past few days.

Some early conclusions based upon the what was being said and written in as far as the Oscar season is concerned goes like this after Venice (though it's not finished yet) and Telluride:

Films with some serious Best Picture wind at their backs:

"Steve Jobs"
"Black Mass"

Also in the conversation:
"Son of Saul"
"45 Years"

Acting considerations include

Best Actress:

Cate Blanchett/Carol
Rooney Mara/Carol (although most think that she'll be campaigned as Supporting)
Carey Mulligan/Suffragette
Brie Larson/Room ( I think I saw Ms. Larson playing darts at a pizza place on Colorado, Ave. on Sunday night)
Charlotte Rampling/45 Years

Best Actor:

Michael Fassbender/Steve Jobs
Johnny Depp/Black Mass
Idris Elba/Beasts (could go supporting)
Tom Courtenay/45 Years

Supporting Actress:

Kate Winslet/Steve Jobs
Anne-Marie Duff/Suffragette
Rachel McAdams/Spotlight

Supporting Actor:

Michael Keaton/Spotlight
Mark Ruffalo/Spotlight
Abraham Attah/Beasts
Joel Edgerton/Black Mass
Jacob Trembelay/Room
Seth Rogen/Steve Jobs


Danny Boyle/Steve Jobs
Tom McCarthy/Spotlight
Scott Cooper/Black Mass
Todd Haynes/Carol
Cary Fukunaga/Beasts
Lenny Abrahamson/Room
Sarah Gavron/Suffragette

My personal drumbeats are for Jeff Daniels in "Steve Jobs" and Peter Sarsgaard for "Black Mass" as Supporting Actor possibilities.

Additionally, there'll be additional considerations in many other categories (Costumes for "Carol" as an example).

Of course, there's till a lot to happen including Toronto, New York, AFI and big releases that include: "The Revenant", "The Hateful Eight", "Bridge of Spies", "In the Heart of the Sea", "By the Sea" and don't forget "The Danish Girl" which has already made a splash in Venice.

The next nearly six months will be about sorting all of this out.   Oscar happens on Feb. 28, 2016.


Again, a big "Thank You" to all of you who read this experiment.  So many of you shared kind words with me during the Festival.  I'm always more than a little surprised at how many people seem to have looked at.  Also...

Note to Chris "Boom Boom" Schneider...Kurt will join me in class this morning.

Thanks to all....

I hope you made notes.

The Professionals have already started to send their ratings in and I hope to get those completely together, collated and published by the end of the week.  Perhaps Monday.

Meanwhile, YOU have a job to do, as well.  Now that the fest is in the books, I'm asking YOU to rate the films and send those ratings to me for The People's Telluride.  Please rate each film you saw on a scale of 1-5 with 1 being abysmal and 5 being perfection.  If you want to rate with half points (ex: 4.5) that's cool too.

Send ratings to the comment section of the blog OR OR OR

via Twitter @Gort2 OR to

Michael's Telluride Film Blog's Facebook page:

Monday, September 7, 2015

Monday's TBAs / Sunday Commentary / More Weirdness / Heading Home

Sadness ensues, it's the last day of TFF #42...


Monday TBAs

• 23 Son of Saul Werner Herzog Theatre 9AM
• 28 Time to Choose Nugget 9AM
• G Dreaming Against
the World + Tyrus
FREE Pierre 9AM
• F Sembene! FREE Backlot 9AM
• 11 Black Mass Chuck Jones' Cinema 12:15PM
• 8 Ixcanul Palm 1PM
• 1a Carol Galaxy 1PM
• 13 Spotlight Werner Herzog Theatre 1PM
• 26 Taxi Nugget 1PM
• A Cinema: A Public
Affair FREE Backlot 1PM
• E Peggy Guggenheim:
Art Addict FREE Pierre 1:15PM
• 19 Siti + Cinema FREE Masons 1:30PM
• 5 Beasts of
No Nation Chuck Jones' Cinema 3:00PM
• 29 Marguerite Nugget 3:15PM
• C Ingrid Bergman--
In Her Own 
Words FREE Backlot 3:15PM
• 10 Room Palm 3:30PM
• 26 Taxi Pierre 3:45PM
• 11 Black Mass Galaxy 3:45PM
• 12 Suffragette Werner Herzog Theatre 4PM
• 16 Mom and Me Masons 4PM
• D In the Shadow of
the Great 
Oaks FREE Backlot 5:30PM
• SP Picture Sheridan Opera House 6PM
• 17 Viva Pierre 6PM
• 25 Only the Dead See
the End of War Nugget 6PM
• 27 Hitchcock/Truffaut Masons 6PM
• 12 Suffragette Chuck Jones' Cinema 5:45PM
• 7a Steve Jobs Palm 6:30PM
• 15 Rams Galaxy 6:30PM
• 36 Cocksucker Blues
(Feature Only) FREE Werner Herzog Theatre 6:30PM
• Sneak Preview
6PM, Sheridan Opera House 
Live accompaniment by the Alloy Orchestra
It is a film like no other you have seen. Made in violation of every rule of film production, Paolo Cherchi Usai’s second feature is a movie-in-denial, a film that tests—protests—its own identity as a film. The canned theatre; a dream factory; a work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction—intuitions like these have been thrown at the film medium since birth. The Tin Man has no heart, generations of wizards have been telling us. PICTURE was made as if its director had been blissfully unaware of their curse. (U.S., 2015, 68m)
Monday Seminar
Noon, Town Park

Open to all Festival passholders
"What do actors need to hear from film directors?
With Cary Fukunaga, Brie Larson, Paddy Breathnach, Héctor Medina, Luis Alberto García


Sunday's films were:

Jafar Panahi's "Taxi"...very nice work here.
Andrew Haigh's "45 Years"...measured pace kills the momentum
Scott Cooper's "Black Mass"...outstanding...return of Johnny Depp to actual acting.
Lazlo Nemes' "Son of Saul"...searing and daring.

Most Buzz About Films I Missed:

"Beasts of No Nation"


Here's something that doesn't happen to me every day.  Got into a little Twitter back and forth with Seth Rogen.  Yes, THE Seth Rogen here in town for "Steve Jobs".  I happened to tweet that I wasn't going to the Danny Boyle tribute screening of "Steve Jobs" but was going to attend the separate screening at The Galaxy.  Mr. Rogen took me to task, humorously I believe, via Twitter.  

It was fun and weird at the same time.

  1. not enough to give the man the goddam respect of going to his tribute!!! Aaaaahhh!!!


As you read this I am in the Jeep headed back to the real world...not because I want to but because I will be in a classroom on Tuesday morning.

I hope your fest was as wonderful and memorable as mine.

From embracing the father of a Nobel Peace Prize winner to re-kindling acquaintances who have become, I believe friends: Chris Schiller, Sasha Stone, Kris Tapley, Tomris Laffly, Alex Billington, this has been a a remarkable fest.

Also, as has become a bit if a tradition, it was a hoot to have part of my family in town for the festival.  Shout out to my Mom and Dad, Patt and Calvin Patterson and my brother Jim Patterson who made his first foray into Telluride in many a decade and seemed no worse for the wear as the weekend ended.

My eternal thanks to our hosts: Larry and Mitzi Mallard...we really don't deserve your kindness.

And a big thanks to those of you who have read Michael's Telluride Film Blog.  I ran into many of you over the weekend and let me tell you how incredibly wonderful it is to find out how many of you take the time to read MTFB.  Thanks...

Keep a lookout over the next few days.  I'll soon have "The Professionals Telluride" collated and I'll post that as soon as I can get that all together.

Also, don't forget to do your part.  Send in your film ratings on a 1-5 scale and I'll put up "The People's Telluride" as well.

That's all folks!

Please feel free to leave a comment or question here at the blog.

Email me at or

Tweet/Follow at me @Gort2 on Twitter

You can also message me on Facebook (and "Like" me too)

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Sunday's TBAs and More

Good Sunday everyone...welcome to Day Three of the 42nd Telluride Film Festival.


Here are the announced TBAs for Sunday:

Sunday TBAs

  • 3 Die Nibelungen FREE Masons Hall Cinema 8:30AM
  • 11 Black Mass Werner Herzog Theatre 1PM
  • 8 Ixcanul Q&A Sheridan Opera House 1:15PM
  • 39 Student Prints FREE Le Pierre 3:30PM
  • 7a Steve Jobs Werner Herzog Theatre 4PM
  • 28 Time to Choose Q&A Nugget Theatre 4:30PM
  • F Sembene! FREE Le Pierre 6:30PM
  • 7a Steve Jobs Palm Theatre 8PM
  • Sneak Preview: Black Girl FREE Q&A Le Pierre 8:15PM
  • 26 Taxi Masons Hall Cinema 9:30PM
  • 15 Rams Le Pierre 10:15PM

  • Sneak Preview
    8:15PM, Le Pierre FREE / Q&A
    Lured to France as a housekeeper, a young African girl finds the world closing in on her in Ousmane Sembene’s explosive, visionary debut. Drawing visually from the French Nouvelle Vague and spiritually from the Italian neorealists, the film’s heart and soul is African. This gorgeous new restoration, courtesy of Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation and the Cineteca di Bologna, revives a film that remains as potent and relevant today as it did 50 years ago, with its black-and-white photography immersing us in the seemingly unending fissures of race and class. The final sequence—a boy in a mask haunting a Frenchman—remains one of the most memorable in cinema history. (Senegal, 1966, 66m) Followed by Q&A with Sembene biographer Samba Gadjigo
    BLACK GIRL plays as a double feature with SEMBENE! with a 15-minute intermission between shows. Available seats will be filled during the intermission. The double feature will be followed by a Q&A with Sembene biographer Samba Gadjigo.

  • Conversation 10:30AM
  • Abel Gance Open Air Cinema
    with Danny Boyle, Aaron Sorkin, Seth Rogen & Kate Winslet moderated by Todd McCarthy•

  • Sunday Seminar
  • Noon, Elks Park
    Free and open to the public
    “How does one build a layered narrative around a charismatic figure?”
    With Scott Cooper, Joel Edgerton, Nicolas Saada, Xavier Giannoli

    Announcement of Monday Sneak Preview!!
    6PM Monday, Sheridan Opera House
    Live accompaniment by the Alloy Orchestra
    It is a film like no other you have seen. Made in violation of every rule of film production, Paolo Cherchi Usai’s second feature is a movie-in-denial, a film that tests—protests—its own identity as a film. The canned theatre; a dream factory; a work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction—intuitions like these have been thrown at the film medium since birth. The Tin Man has no heart, generations of wizards have been telling us. PICTURE was made as if its director had been blissfully unaware of their curse. (U.S., 2015, 68m)