The American Film Institute typically gives out honors to 10 films each year, but this year, 11 made the cut, including Boyhood, which picked up even more critics’ prizes over the weekend. According to AFI, this is “the first time in AFI AWARDS history that the voting procedure – including tiebreakers – has resulted in the inclusion of 11 motion picture honorees.” READ FULL STORY
Tag: Whiplash (1-10 of 21)
The New York Film Critics Circle showed a lot of love for Boyhood today, anointing Richard Linklater’s film the Best Picture of the year. The NYFCC Awards are frequently seen as one of the first bellwethers of the coming Oscar race.
Birdman scored six Independent Spirit Award nominations, the most of any film, when the nods were announced today, but for the most part the Spirit Awards spread the love around.
Boyhood, Nightcrawler, and Selma each got five nominations, while Whiplash, a source of buzz since its debut at Sundance, received four. Though most of these films have Oscar hopes, the Spirit Awards have also honor films that haven’t made much headway in the awards conversation, despite critical praise. For instance, the John Lithgow-Alfred Molina film Love Is Strange was nominated for Best Feature, and received four other nominations, while A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, a film described as the “first Iranian Vampire Western,“ has three nominations to its name.
See the full list below. READ FULL STORY
“I remember when I first met J.K. Simmons, I just sort of told him, ‘Remember how [frightening] you were in Oz? I want to make that guy look like the teacher in Mr. Holland’s Opus.” —Whiplash director Damien Chazelle
Terence Fletcher, the intimidating music teacher in Whiplash, isn’t a sadistic member of the Aryan Brotherhood, like Oz‘s Vern Schillinger. But for Miles Teller’s high-school drum prodigy, Fletcher is practically evil incarnate, a bully whose primary methods of motivation are tossing chairs and playing cruel psychological mind games. He wants his school’s jazz ensemble to be the best in the country, and woe to the student who thinks his best is good enough. There simply is no good enough for Fletcher.
J.K. Simmons has the gift of ease, which makes Fletcher all the more terrifying. You could imagine another actor overdoing it—ranting like an actor playing a madman. A caricature. But Simmons makes Fletcher even more real because of the coolness behind the cruelty. He has these bulging biceps and a bald head, but it’s those eyes—sometimes calculating, sometimes impassive—that are the most frightening. One inscrutable look from him, and even the audience will slouch down in their seats and hope he doesn’t call on them. READ FULL STORY
When director Damien Chazelle was in high school in Princeton, N.J., he played drums in his school’s highly competitive jazz ensemble, which was led by an intense conductor who ruled with an iron fist.
“Drums had always been like a fun hobby for me, and for four years, when I was in that ensemble, it became just a source of constant dread and just terror and anxiety,” the 29-year-old director said last winter at the Sundance Film Festival, where his film Whiplash won top prizes. Practicing constantly, under mental if not physical duress, left scars that were still raw when Chazelle decided to write Whiplash. ”This was the most personal thing I’d ever written, and I put it in a drawer for awhile,” he said. ”I was almost embarrassed to show it because it seemed like exposing a part of myself that I didn’t really want exposed.”
The writer/director admits he still has nightmares—nightmares that audiences can understand after meeting J.K. Simmons’s music teacher in Whiplash. Mr. Holland he is not.
In this exclusive scene from the film, which opens in theaters Oct. 10 after recent screenings at the New York Film Festival, Miles Teller’s eager drum prodigy meets the school’s revered conductor, a man who can make or break his future. In a romantic-comedy, this scene might be termed the meet-cute. But in this tense drama, it immediately sets the unsettling tone for the clash of wills to follow. READ FULL STORY
The New York Film Festival announced its Main Slate selection of films today, revealing the 27 movies that will join gala screenings of Gone Girl, Inherent Vice, and Birdman when the 52nd festival begins on Sept. 26. The list includes honored films from Cannes, including Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher, David Cronenberg’s Map to the Stars, and Mike Leigh’s Mr. Turner, as well as Sundance’s big winner, Whiplash.
“In this year’s lineup, we have great big films alongside films made on the most intimate scale, personal epics and intricately constructed chamber pieces, films of great serenity and films that leave you dazed, first films and last films, all equally vivid, alive, and essential,” said Kent Jones, the festival director, in a statement. “Taken altogether, this year’s Main Slate reminds me, all over again, why I love the cinema so much, and it will do the same for you.” READ FULL STORY
“There are no two words in the English language more harmful than ‘Good job.'”
That’s the fault line on which writer/director Damien Chazelle has built Whiplash. His Sundance sensation stars Miles Teller as a jazz-drum prodigy who earns the attention of his prestigious school’s notorious music maestro (J.K. Simmons). Is genius simply born, or does it need to be forged? How far is a teacher supposed—or allowed—to go to bring out the best in a student, and what are the risks and consequences for such methods?
In the new trailer for the film, Teller’s Andrew Neyman endures physical and psychological punishment as he fumbles to find the right beat and the right answers. READ FULL STORY
Whiplash, the award-winning Sundance film that stars Miles Teller as an aspiring jazz drummer at the mercy of J.K. Simmons’ tyrannical music teacher, will open in theaters Oct. 10. The film, written and directed by Damien Chazelle and championed by producers Jason Blum and Jason Reitman, was based on Chazelle’s short of the same name and went on to win two top prizes at Sundance. Reitman described the movie as “Shine meets Full Metal Jacket,” and Simmons’ performance as a terrifying bully of a mentor is one that could garner award consideration. Sony Pictures Classics’ decision to release the film in October, as opposed to the summer, certainly helps his candidacy.
Click below to see a clip of Simmons in action: READ FULL STORY
Where is the line between genius and madness — and should greatness be nurtured gently, like a beautiful flower, or forged under relentless, crushing pressure, like a perfect diamond? Those are the questions at the heart of Whiplash, the Sundance award winner about a jazz-drummer prodigy (Miles Teller) whose dreams are in the hands of his school’s intense music teacher (J.K. Simmons).
Director Damien Chazelle based the story on his own high-school music trauma, and this scene perfectly captures the mental and physical abuse that Simmons’ character, Terrence Fletcher, wields at his students. The film’s title refers to a jazz composition composed by Hank Levy, but it may as well refer to the damage inflicted by Fletcher in this scene. READ FULL STORY
Whiplash, director Damien Chazelle’s story of a young jazz drummer, took home both the U.S. Grand Jury and Audience Dramatic awards at the Sundance Film Festival awards Saturday night. The film grew out of a short from Chazelle that won the Short Film Jury Award at Sundance in 2013.
Rich Hill, a story about a community in rural Missouri, won the U.S. Documentary Grand Jury award and Alive Inside: A Story of Music & Memory, about how music can help dementia patients, won the U.S. Audience Documentary award. Co-screenwriters Craig Johnson and Mark Heyman were honored with the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award for The Skeleton Twins, starring Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig. Cutter Hodierne won the U.S. Dramatic Award for Direction for Fishing Without Nets, his first feature film. The Prop 8 documentary The Case Against 8 brought home the U.S. Documentary Award for Direction for directors Ryan White and Ben Cotner. The Angelina Jolie-produced film about Ethiopia, Difret, won the Audience Award in the World Dramatic Competition.
Husband and wife hosts Nick Offerman and Megan Mullally brought the sexual innuendo and a ukulele to the ceremony in Park City, Utah, where this year’s crop of 186 independent films were celebrated. Presenters included Felicity Huffman, William H. Macy, Tracy Chapman, and film critic Leonard Maltin.
Check out the full list of winner’s below. You can also watch the replay of the awards ceremony, which streamed live on YouTube.
READ FULL STORY
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