If you’re lucky, you get one great teacher; one teacher who steps into your life and makes a difference that lasts the rest of your days. In some cases, you may have to actively stalk that teacher to engage his burnt out, underpaid, overworked, teenager-warped soul….but that’s just what you gotta do then! The Edge of Seventeen was a hilarious, wonderfully acted film from 2016 that got absolutely no recognition, which is a shame, because Hailee Steinfeld was Oscar-worthy and Woody Harrelson got his best comedic role since Cheers.
Steinfeld’s dramatic, over-the-top Nadine is stymied when she runs into the jaded stonewall that is her history teacher, Mr. Bruner (Harrelson), constantly harrassing him for advice and counsel against his will, especially holding him hostage during his lunch break. The relationship that they build over the course of the film is touching and always darkly funny, never more so when Nadine’s hysterical threat to jump in front of the largest moving vehicle she can find is calmly met by a withering dueling suicidal rant from Bruner. Everyone in high school should be so lucky to have a Mr. Bruner.
Welcome to the 16th annual KT Renaissance Film Awards! Created by myself years ago to ward off the amply demonstrated madness that claws at my soul each year when the Oscars get things so very wrong in their awarding. The categories (with the exception of an added ensemble award that I cribbed from the SAG awards and a new category to reward voice over/motion capture work) are the same, and unlike the Oscars, these awards are fluid. I may well change my mind. I might see something that I haven’t, and the awards will be updated to reflect my mercurial mood swings. Continue reading 2017 Renaissance Film Awards (Killing Time’s Oscars)→
It’s good that it was a great year for movies because we certainly needed the escapism in 2016. I cannot recall a year with more quality films, both inside franchises and standalone films. Exemplifying that most was Disney, which had the single greatest year of any studio in Hollywood history, grossing way over $7 billion, and doing it with quality. It’s no accident that The House of the Mouse will end up with the top 5 grossing movies of the year. Whether it be through their own animated and live action films, Pixar, Marvel, or Star Wars, Disney put quality product after quality product out in 2016 and people responded in droves. It may be overly optimistic, but let’s hope that studios take note that the films that made the bucks were the films that were good.
And there’s so many films yet to see! I have to qualify this as a preliminary list. I’ve seen 64 movies in 2016 (normally I average 90 when all is said and done). With Oscar films releasing wide in January, this list may very well change, which is why my ultimate say on the year in film is our annual Renaissance Film Awards which will take place Oscar week. But as this year ends, it’s fitting and right that I single out the my top 10 (the quality is so deep, I may do a top 25 list later in February alongside the Rennys). My top two films have not changed since May and they are such a dead heat in my mind that they just swapped again last night. No surprise, both are Disney films. I gave out three perfect 10’s (thus far) for 2016 films, but more 9’s than any year I’ve been a reviewer. Yes, there were films we were counting on that fizzled (Batman vs. Superman, Jason Bourne, Assassin’s Creed, etc.), but many more films stood up and surpassed our wildest expectations. So, caveats in place here is my simple Top 10 as the year ends followed by a great 2016 Year in Film video put together by the talented people at We Got This Covered. May you all have a wonderful New Year’s Eve, and I’ll catch you killing time in 2017. Continue reading Killing Time’s Top 10 Movies of 2016→
A great trailer is like a mini-film. The best of them tell you just enough to want to kill to see the movie it’s advertising without giving away the whole plot, use iconic imagery and music to capture the soul of the film, and live on even after the film’s release as a pleasure to watch. A great trailer can even be for a movie that ended up being a huge disappointment. Most of the films on this list are universally critically acclaimed, but Suicide Squad sharply divided fans. Does that make that amazing “I Started a Joke” trailer released any less a masterpiece? Nope. Half of what was in the Rogue One trailers never made the final cut of the film. Will that stop me from watching them for decades to come? Not a chance.
A few words about the process of selection. One, all that mattered for consideration was that the FILM came out in 2016 (even in limited release). Some of these trailers first dropped in 2015, just as we’re getting trailers for 2017 films in 2016. Two, there are two films on the list with red-band trailers, so content warning, but they’re the trailers that made me want to see those films. If you have any picks for trailers you think should’ve made the list, comment away, if WP will let you, paste the trailer’s link. A great set of trailers sets up a great movie watching experience, and if you go to as many films as I do you tend to see the same ones over and over. I never tired of these. Continue reading Top 10: Trailers of 2016!!!!→
I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I needed a break from staring at a computer screen, so apologize for the lack of posts, but in the upcoming week look for a special epic review of The Arrival, Moana, Hacksaw Ridge and The Edge of Seventeen. My Favorite Scene this week will look at The Big Short. There are some new trailers headed your way, achievement/ trophy guide for Final Fantasy XV (which releases Tuesday), and remember to vote in the “Favorite Harry Potter” movie poll. It will run until December 12th. The following poll will mirror what we did last year with Star Wars Episode VII. We’re going to have a community review poll, where you can rate your score from 1-10 after you view Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.