Getting More Immersed with Indiewire


  The Penske Media purchase of Indiewire has resulted in an expansion of my role as crafts and awards season contributor.  Beginning this week, I begin Emmy coverage of below-the-line contenders along with my usual Oscar season crafts reporting, working closely

Immersed in Blu-ray: Hitchcock and Bogart


The WB Archive Collection gets Hitch and Bogie on Blu-ray and they've never looked better for home viewing. In Kent Jones' indispensable doc, Hitchcock/Truffaut, he reminds us that Truffaut was on a mission to correct misconceptions about Hitch as a lightweight

Immersed in Books: Farber on Film


For the first time, the complete writings of film critic Manny Farber is available from Library of America, edited by Robert Polito (Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson). Manny Farber (1917-2008) was the first modernist film critic to write like a modernist.

Clips

Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda Talk Minions

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Clips, Crafts, Home Entertainment, Movies, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Minions turned out to be one of the biggest animated sensations of the year, grabbing $335 million domestically and $1.1 billion worldwide for Universal and Illumination Ent. It’s also an Oscar contender for its trippy, throwback ’60s satire and charming physical comedy. In honor of the Blu-ray/DVD combo release from Universal, I spoke to directors Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda. Read more

Clipping the Making of Anomalisa

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Oscar, stop-motion, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Find out how stop-motion blurs the line between animation and live-action in the Oscar contending Anomalisa from Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson. Read more

Evaluating the Top Cinematography Contenders

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, Clips, Crafts, Tech | Leave a comment

Vengeance, hate, survival, redemption and forbidden love are explored in this year’s top six Best Cinematography contenders, in which nature very much determines character. Read more

How Shore Composed Spotlight for Chamber Orchestra

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Music, Oscar | Leave a comment

Howard Shore’s score for Spotlight might be the highlight of his distinguished career, which has already earned him two Oscars for his epic Lord of the Rings work. The key inspiration after reading the script was conceiving it as a chamber piece for 10-piece orchestra, evoking the tragedy and triumph of Tom McCarthy’s fact-based journo procedural. Read more

Transforming Eddie Redmayne Into The Danish Girl

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Clips, Costume, Crafts, Makeup/Hair, Movies, Oscar, Production Design, Tech | Leave a comment

The subtle craft of transforming transgender pioneer Lili Elbe (Eddie Redmayne) in The Danish Girl is one of the great stories this awards season involving production design, cinematography, hair/makeup and costume design. Read more

How They Shot Mad Max: Fury Road

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Cinematography, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Tech, VFX | Leave a comment

Fury Road was a reinvigorating adventure for veteran cinematographer John Seale, who came out of retirement to collaborate once again with George Miller. Only this was no Lorenzo’s Oil, the last film he shot for Miller. Read more

Getting Animated About the Oscar Contenders

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Oscar, previs, stop-motion, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Here are the five likely nominees for best animated feature: Pixar at its most abstract, Blue Sky’s masterpiece, two very different stop-motion triumphs and the hand-drawn Brazilian tapestry distributed by GKIDS. Read more

Immersed in Blu-ray: Ant-Man from Marvel

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Blu-ray, Clips, Crafts, Home Entertainment, Movies, previs, Tech, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

Marvel’s Ant-Man with Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas arrives Dec. 8th on Blu-ray/DVD from Disney as an absurd superhero/heist movie. Read more

Elevating Youth with A Simple Song

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Music | Leave a comment

After cherry picking David Lang’s “I Lie” and “Maya Beiser” for the soundtrack to his Oscar-winning The Great Beauty, director Paolo Sorrentino approached the Pulitzer Prize-winning composer (the little match girl passion) to conjure a song for Youth. A tall order considering that the song summarizes the life of a retired conductor (Michael Caine at his most sensitive) forced to confront his mortality at a Fellini-esque Swiss spa. Read more

Academy Shortlists 10 Animated Shorts

Posted on by Bill Desowitz in 3-D, Animation, Below the Line, Clips, Crafts, Movies, Oscar, Shorts, Tech, Trailers, VFX, Virtual Production | Leave a comment

The Academy announced the 10 shortlisted animated features, ranging from Sanjay’s Super Team to Prologue to World of Tomorrow to a pair from the NFB (Carface, If I Was God). Read more