In this morning’s roundup of movie news ‘n’ notes from around the web, all those critics’ love letters to “The Social Network” may mean an abrupt fall is coming.
Of course it’s too good to last, right? With the raves for “The Social Network” continuing to pile up from virtually every critic who’s seen the David Fincher film, Robert Dougherty wonders when the backlash will start, and if the film’s 100 percent positive Rotten Tomatoes score and 9.7 rating (“unheard of outside of a Pixar movie”) will lead to a harsher and quicker fall. “[S]keptics and nitpickers are bound to rise up before long,” he says. “ … Being so quick to declare a movie a masterpiece is a risky venture.” On the other hand, too much enthusiastic praise is a significantly better problem to have than not enough of it. (Associated Content via Yahoo! News)
In all the hubbub over “The Social Network,” another likely Best Picture contender, “The King’s Speech,” has been routinely classified as a more traditional – which is to say, stodgier – choice. Sasha Stone, who wasn’t part of the first wave who saw Tom Hooper’s film in Telluride and Toronto, catches up with it and reminds us that it’s much better than that reductionism implies: “Thanks to the subtle directing of Hooper, and the thoughtful acting choices by Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush … the film feels authentic – the emotions aren’t traded cheaply.” There’s nothing wrong with loving “The Social Network,” but its undeniable qualities don’t mean that “The King’s Speech” is any less, as she says, exquisite. (Awards Daily)
The Academy’s documentary voters may tend to like one specific – and fairly narrow – kind of film, but other bodies that give awards to docs cast a wider net. A.J. Schnack looks at the nominees for the Grierson prizes, British awards that are handed out before the annual Sheffield Documentary Festival: this year’s top contender is “Exit Through the Gift Shop,” with nods in the Best Cinema Documentary and Most Entertaining Documentary categories. But “Exit’s” showing at the Griersons, he says, “may mean little for that film’s Oscar hopes” – after all, last year “Afghan Star” and “The Yes Men Fix the World” were Grierson winners that didn’t even make the AMPAS doc shortlist. (All These Wonderful Things)
Richard Verrier looks at the problem of movie piracy through the prism of independent filmmakers – who, he says, can’t afford the hit when viewers watch films on pirate sites rather than paying for them. The trouble is that the indie filmmakers rely on DVD revenue, which is falling as “online viewing options become readily available.” Facts and figures as to how much this is hurting the indies are scarce in the piece, but it does include a couple of sad stories from directors who are trying to fight the rampant piracy of their films. (Los Angeles Times)
Christopher Campbell pays tribute to Sally Menke, the film editor who died on Monday in Los Angeles. Includes brief interview and video footage, most of it detailing the relationship between Menke and Quentin Tarantino, all of whose films she edited. (indieWIRE) And Chris Nashawaty also salutes the woman who, Tarantino said, essentially co-wrote his films: “Along with Martin Scorsese and his longtime editor Thelma Schoonmaker, it’s hard to imagine a more collaborative director/editor duo than Tarantino and Menke.” (Entertainment Weekly)