When the Alternative Oscars were set up three years ago, it was as a two-fingered salute to the Academy Awards. You see, I was fed up with the Oscars only honouring films that were technically brilliant, but weren’t overly popular with cinema-going audiences.
I never expected for my little awards to become successful, but it appears many of you reading this agreed with my stance towards the Academy. In its first year, I was pleased with just over 300 people taking part and last year I was ecstatic for just under 1,000 individuals to share their thoughts.
This year, with the help of a small advertising budget and an increased word of mouth, the Alternative Oscars received bang on 1,600 votes! To say I’m thrilled is an understatement. So, without further ado, let’s crown this year’s winners. Continue reading →
It was 1964 when the world was introduced to a practically-perfect British nanny in Walt Disney’s Mary Poppins. Back then, Julie Andrews starred as the eponymous character alongside Dick van Dyke and David Tomlinson. It was an instant hit and became one of Disney’s most-loved feature films.
That is, by everyone apart from the author of Mary Poppins, PL Travers. So incensed by what she felt was Disney’s misunderstanding of her source material, she banned all future work with the studio.
So, 54 years later and with Travers’ estate finally agreeing to a sequel (I wonder how much Disney executives had to pay for that), we get a sequel that no-one was really asking for. Mary Poppins Returns brings the titular character back into the hearts of newcomers and fans alike, but is the film as practically-perfect in every way like its lead? Or is it a bit of a dud? Continue reading →
Cinema is awfully quiet these days. Todd Haynes’s Wonderstruck and Kim Ki-Duk’s Moebius are among the small but substantial handful of films to have embraced the power of keeping schtum. In the cacophony of modern cinema, silence is an underrated commodity. John Krasinski’s directorial debut A Quiet Place is the latest to hold back on the sound in order to enhance the visual horrors. If ever a film had me inwardly crawling my way into a booby trapped bear pit whilst silently gabbering with fear, A Quiet Place is that film.
There’s been some kind of apocalyptic event, biological or alien that we don’t know, in which humanity (or the US at least) is now hunted by giant, super fast and super vicious reptilian creatures. Completely blind, they hunt with an acute sense of hearing meaning survivors must live in a constant state of silent, fearful anticipation. Even the slightest noise will draw them out and if they hear you, well, you’ll see. Continue reading →
It’s always refreshing to see a film released primarily for the adult market. We all loved The Hunger Games, but imagine what the series could’ve been like had the franchise been given a 15 or even an 18 certification.
And Fifty Shades of Grey may have its critics (me being one of them) but at least it appealed to those of us not interested in sharing cinema screens with rambling tweens. The finest of the adult genre? Well, that has to be Gone Girl. But now there’s a new kid on the block, ready to steal its crown. Is The Girl on the Train a worthy adversary? Continue reading →