Monday, September 12, 2016

The People's Telluride Revealed / A Week Removed and Some Reflections / The Gold Derby Says...

Welcome to Monday and the return for MTFB to a more manageable, less crazed twice-a-week posting schedule (Mondays and Thursdays) with extra posts when news warrants...

Call your friends and neighbors because it's time for...


After collecting data from MTFB readers for a week I have the results of this year's People's Telluride film festival ratings.  Using a 1-5 scale with 1 being "not-so-good" and 5 being "a masterpiece".

The People's Telluride had its largest participation since I started it a few years back which is gratifying.  For the purposes of the ratings and to maintain some semblance of balance, I have limited the list of films included to those that were rated by at least a third of respondents.  Over 40 films/programs were rated by at least one respondent and 21 received enough votes to be included in the final ratings.  The films that were the hottest tickets based on the fact that they were the most rated/viewed were:

1) Arrival
2) La La Land
3) Moonlight
4) Sully
5) Bleed for This

The People's Telluride Ratings for 2016 (the number in parentheses is the film's average rating)

1) Moonlight (4.37)
2) La La Land (4.33)
3) Maudie (4.29)
4) The Eagle Huntress (4.21)
5) Manchester by the Sea (4.18)
6) Arrival (4.13)
7) Bright Lights (3.90)
8) Frantz (3.89)
9) Toni Erdmann (3.80)
10) Sully (3.79)
11) Lost in Paris (3.69)
12) Wakefield (3.59)
13) California Typewriter (3.53)
14) Bleed for This (3.413)
15) Una (3.406)
16) Norman (3.30)
17) Chasing Trane (3.29)
18) Through the Wall (3.17)
19) Things to Come (3.05)
20) Graduation (2.90)
21) Into the Inferno (2.86)

It's worth noting that the film that has finished in the SECOND spot of this poll for the last four years has won the Oscar for Best Picture;

2012- Argo wins Oscar (Stories We Tell was #1 in The Peep's T-ride)
2013- 12 Years a Slave wins Oscar (Tim's Vermeer was #1)
2014- Birdman wins Oscar (The Imitation Game was #1)
2015- Spotlight wins Oscar (Room was #1)

In 2016 La La Land finishes #2 in The Peep's poll and Moonlight is #1.  Does this portend La La Land winning Best Picture?

One other La La Land note, over the weekend Emma Stone who I last saw with my own eyeballs eight days ago in Town Park won Venice's Vest Actress Award for La La Land.

Some other history...none of this year's films crack the Top Ten People's rated films in the five year history of its existence.  Here are the ten best rated films of the past five years according to the People:

1) Stories We Tell-12 (4.80)
2) Argo-12 (4.75)
3) The Imitation Game-14  (4.73)
4) The Attack-12  (4.70)
5) Tim's Vermeer-13 (4.67)
6) 12 Years a Slave -13 (4.55)
7) Room -15 (4.47)
8) Birdman-14 (4.46)
9) Spotlight-15 (4.45)
10) The Act of Killing-12 (4.41)

Moonlight's 4.37 rating would put it at #12 just behind Gravity (4.40) and just ahead of Beasts of No Nation (4.35).

The lowest all time (well for these five years) is from 2012...Paradise: Love with a 1.1 rating and over that time span 98 films have gotten enough responses to be included in The People's Telluride.

COMING THURSDAY...The Professionals Telluride.


The 43rd edition of the Telluride Film Festival came to a close a week ago today.  My wife and I stayed through Monday evening for the first time in years and I have to say I'm glad we did.  It allowed us to get a couple of more films and it also allowed us to stay for the Labor Day Picnic which turned out to be a big deal to me (see below).

Encounters with readers throughout the weekend really made me think that MTFB has gained a modestly substantial following.  I kept running into people through the fest that would mention that they were readers.  I am always thrilled and also disconcerted at that.  The notion that people would recognize me as a result of the blog never entered my mind when I started writing in this space eight years ago.  It is humbling and esteeming all at the same time.

Last year I was stunned when Malala's Yousefzai's father reached out to me to arrange a meeting because he had been a reading the blog.  This year's head turner came on Monday when, as I was congratulating Barry Jenkins for his direction I mentioned that I "wrote a little blog about the festival" at which point he stopped me to ask "Are you Michael?"

Well, I was floored.  This is a young man who is right on the cusp of his big breakout with Moonlight and he knows who I am?  Craziness.

We continued the short conversation and I went on my merry way (actually to the Gondola to The Chuck to catch Bleed for This...Oscar nom for Aaron Eckhardt please).

Later I contacted Mr. Jenkins through Twitter and also friend requested him on Facebook.  We're friends now.  I promised that I wouldn't be a stalker.

Other items...

***The final Ten (Plus) Bets list from day before the lineup for this year was announced was 20 for 20. That's right.  For those keeping score, every film on that last list made the TFF #43 lineup.

Here's how MTFB has done with last posted predictions over these past few years:


As you can see, I've gotten better and to be fair, the process is easier since Toronto laid down their "honest premiere status" policy in 2014.

***With today's posting of the results of The People's Telluride Ratings, and since you have shared your ratings with me,  I thought I'd share my ratings with you:

1) La La Land 4.5
2) Moonlight 4
3) Arrival 4
4) Sully 4
5) Toni Erdmann 4
6) Bright Lights 4
7) Manchester by the Sea 3.5
8) Norman 3.5
9) Una 3.5
10) Wakefield
11) Bleed for This 3
12) Through the Wall 3


If you've followed this blog for awhile you know that it's about to switch its focus for the next six months or so and report on the Oscar race with particular focus on the films that played at TFF #43.

To that end, here's a breakdown of the leaders in the major six categories at the conclusion of the fest (but before Toronto and Venice have finished) from The Gold Derby.

Best Picture nominations would go to: Manchester by the Sea, La La Land, Moonlight and Arrival (assuming at least eight films are nominated.  Sully is also a possibility.

Best Direction nominations would go to: Kenneth Lonergan/Manchester by the Sea and Damien Chazelle/La La Land.  Close: Denis Villenueve/Arrival, Barry Jenkins/Moonlight and Clint Eastwood/Sully.

Best Actress: Emma Stone/La La Land with Amy Adams/Arrival as a possibility.

Best Actor: Casey Affleck/Manchester by the Sea, Ryan Gosling/La La Land with Tom Hanks/Sully  as a possibility.

Best Supporting Actress: Michelle Williams/Manchester by the Sea, Naomie Harris/Moonlight

Best Supporting Actor: Lucas Hedges/Manchester by the Sea, Marhershala Ali/Moonlight and Kyle Chandler/Manchester by the Sea

From these six categories Manchester would earn six nominations, La La Land would get four, Moonlight would get four with another possibility, Arrival would get one with another two possible and Sully has three possible.

Check the complete odds for the current Gold Derby predictions here.

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