In this morning’s roundup of movie news ‘n’ notes from around the web, filmmakers react to a court decision, and docs may bring the Boss and the governor to Toronto.
The court decision striking down California’s Proposition 8 diverted Hollywood’s attention from the business of making movies for a while on Wednesday. In Salt Lake City, meanwhile, Sean P. Means gets a statement from director Reed Cowan, whose documentary “8: The Mormon Proposition” detailed how the Mormon church quietly supplied money and volunteers to help pass the proposition making same-sex marriage illegal. The conclusion of his statement: "I hope today's ruling sends a message to Mormons and other religions who work to influence the political process that … they are wasting tens of millions of dollars on an effort that ultimately will fail. Those … dollars are needed to feed and educate the poor and I hope religions get back to the business of religion and stop hurting families like mine." (Salt Lake Tribune)
With much of the Toronto Film Festival documentary slate announced on Wednesday, hometown critic Peter Howell wonders what it means for celebrity guests at the festival. He thinks that the appearance of the Bruce Springsteen doc “The Promise: The Making of ‘Darkness on the Edge of Town,’” “almost guarantees” that Springsteen himself will make an appearance. Meanwhile, he considers disgraced former New York governor Eliot Spitzer a possible guest at the screening of Alex Gibney’s “Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer.” (The Toronto Star)
Mike Hale tries to make sense of the disjointed, confusing world of video-on-demand, where the offerings aren’t included in traditional TV listings and the menus and different categories can be daunting to navigate. Hale suggests a few films worth tracking down, and points readers in the right direction – but he wraps things up by pointing out that the film on which he’s spent the most time, Johnnie To’s “Vengeance,” “is not [a] top-flight” work from the Hong Kong director. (The New York Times)
Is it that time already? David Poland says we should start thinking Oscar again, and does just that in a “30 Weeks to Oscar” column that narrows the field to about three dozen contenders. I think he undersells “The Kids Are All Right” and “Winter’s Bone” and maybe “The King’s Speech” (though I haven’t seen that last one), and maybe he oversells Tyler Perry’s Oscar aspirations. Or maybe not – making Oscar guesses more than six months out is crazy, and there’ll be no way to say who’s right and who’s wrong for many months. (Movie City News)
Anne Thompson looks at the problem of the trailer for the upcoming thriller “Devil” – namely, that many audiences start to laugh, or at least snicker, when M. Knight Shyamalan’s name appears onscreen. Her prescription: if Universal wants people to see the movie next month, they need to take Shyamalan’s name off the trailer immediately. It might work, but who’s going to break the news to Shyamalan? (Thompson on Hollywood)