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Cinema Chat: 2023 Golden Globes recap, MLK Day screenings, and more

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Golden Globe

TARNISHED GOLDEN GLOBES RETURN TO TV, AND HOLLYWOOD PLAYS ALONG

The companies behind the tarnished Golden Globe Awards pushed forward with a rehabilitation effort on Tuesday, with Hollywood luminaries making their way through a waterlogged Los Angeles to accept trophies for film and television achievements. The stand-up comedian Jerrod Carmichael hosted the 80th Globes ceremony, foregoing the typical monologue (zingers about high-wattage attendees) for a subdued opening directly addressing the lack of diversity that kept the show off the air last year. In several moments, a quiet awkwardness fell over the room, as when he noted that the group that awards the Globes didn’t “have a single Black member until George Floyd died.”

But behind the sharp jokes, fervent acceptance speeches, Champagne and couture lurked another sad truth: After two years of upheaval caused by an ethics, finance and diversity scandal — culminating with NBC’s refusal to broadcast the 2022 ceremony — Hollywood has dropped any pretense that the Globes are meaningful as markers of artistic excellence. The Globes are about business, plain and simple. Most movie studios view the Globes telecast and accompanying red carpet spectacle as crucial marketing opportunities for winter films, especially dramas, which have been struggling at the box office. In a study released in 2021, economists at Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania found that, on average, films that win Globes earn an additional $16.5 million in ticket sales.

One critic’s reaction to the Golden Globe show:

“Well, that was about as good a show as the Hollywood Foreign Press Association could have hoped for. The room was packed with celebrities, with only a handful of no-shows; the speeches were passionate and funny; and though Jerrod Carmichael took plenty of swings at the Golden Globes in his monologue, his shocking jokes later on about Tom Cruise and Whitney Houston were the ones guaranteed to go viral. It’s hard to imagine that this briefly dormant awards show airing on a Tuesday will encounter anything besides a ratings slide, but the entertainment value was there, and that’s really the thing the Globes have always sold.”  

  • Best Motion Picture, Drama - “The Fabelmans
  • Best Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy - “The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Best Director, Motion Picture - Steven Spielberg,The Fabelmans
  • Best Screenplay, Motion Picture - Martin McDonagh, “The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Best Motion Picture, Non-English Language - “Argentina, 1985
  • Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture, Drama - Cate Blanchett, “Tár
  • Best Motion Picture, Animated - “Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
  • Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy - Michelle Yeoh, “Everything Everywhere All at Once
  • Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy - Colin Farrell, “The Banshees of Inisherin
  • Best Original Song, Motion Picture - “Naatu Naatu,” “RRR
  • Best Original Score, Motion Picture - Justin Hurwitz, “Babylon
  • Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in Any Motion Picture - Ke Huy Quan, “Everything Everywhere All at Once

OPENING THIS WEEK

"Skinamarink" — OPENS FRIDAY, JANUARY 13 AT THE STATE

This is a 2022 Canadian experimental horror film written and directed by Kyle Edward Ball in his feature directorial debut. The film follows two children who wake up during the night to discover that they cannot find their father, and that the windows, doors, and other objects in their house have disappeared.

The film was shot digitally on a budget of $15,000, in Ball's childhood home in Edmonton, Canada. It premiered at the 26th Fantasia Film Festival in Montreal on July 25, 2022 and went on to screen at other film festivals. Ball cited the work of filmmakers Chantal Akerman, Stan Brakhage, Maya Deren, Stanley Kubrick, and David Lynch as influences on the film. He also stated that he was influenced by the 1967 avant-garde film "Wavelength" and the 1974 slasher film "Black Christmas."

SPECIAL SCREENINGS DOWNTOWN

"The Rocky Horror Picture Show" — PLAYS FRIDAY, JANUARY 13 AT 9:30 PM AT THE STATE

Part of the Late Nights at the State series

With a live shadow cast from the Leather Medusas! In this cult classic, sweethearts Brad (Barry Bostwick) and Janet (Susan Sarandon), stuck with a flat tire during a storm, discover the eerie mansion of Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Tim Curry), a transvestite scientist. As their innocence is lost, Brad and Janet meet a houseful of wild characters, including a rocking biker (Meat Loaf) and a creepy butler (Richard O'Brien). Through elaborate dances and rock songs, Frank-N-Furter unveils his latest creation: a muscular man named "Rocky."

"The Lady Vanishes" — PLAYS SATURDAY, JANUARY 14 AT 7:30 PM AND MONDAY JANUARY 23 AT 7:30 PM AT THE MICHIGAN

Part of the Films We Love series

From director Alfred Hitchcock -- On a train headed for England a group of travelers is delayed by an avalanche. Holed up in a hotel in a fictional European country, young Iris (Margaret Lockwood) befriends elderly Miss Froy (Dame May Whitty). When the train resumes, Iris suffers a bout of unconsciousness and wakes to find the old woman has disappeared. The other passengers ominously deny Miss Froy ever existed, so Iris begins to investigate with another traveler (Michael Redgrave) and, as the pair sleuth, romantic sparks fly.

"Broker" — PLAYS SATURDAY, JANUARY 14 AT 1 PM AT THE STATE

Part of the Korean CinemaNow Series

The film follows two brokers who sell orphaned infants, circumventing the bureaucracy of legal adoption, to affluent couples who can't have children of their own. After an infant's mother surprises the duo by returning to ensure her child finds a good home, the three embark on a journey to find the right couple, building an unlikely family of their own.

New York Cat Film Festival — PLAYS SUNDAY, JANUARY 15 AT 1:30 PM AT THE MICHIGAN

This year's festival had the most international submissions of any year yet, with films from Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Iran, Italy, Kuwait, Malta, Poland, Spain, Taiwan, the UK. These films are presented in various languages. 10% of proceeds will benefit the Humane Society of Huron Valley.

"Summer of Soul" — PLAYS MONDAY, JANUARY 16 (MLK DAY) AT 4 PM AT THE MICHIGAN

In his acclaimed debut as a filmmaker, Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson presents a powerful and transporting documentary-part music film, part historical record created around an epic event that celebrated Black history, culture and fashion. The feature includes never-before-seen concert performances by Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone, Sly & the Family Stone, Gladys Knight & the Pips, Ray Baretto, Abbey Lincoln & Max Roach, and more.

"King in the Wilderness" — PLAYS MONDAY JANUARY 16 (MLK DAY) AT 7:30 PM AT THE MICHIGAN

A portrait of Martin Luther King Jr. during the last years of his life, from his part in the Voting Rights Act of 1965 to his assassination in 1968.

Cultura d'Italia Series (Thursdays at the State)

CONTINUING DOWNTOWN

"Corsage" 

A 2022 historical drama film written and directed by Marie Kreutzer. It stars Vicky Krieps, Florian Teichtmeister, Katharina Lorenz, Jeanne Werner, Alma Hasun, Manuel Rubey, Finnegan Oldfield, Aaron Friesz, Rosa Hajjaj, Lilly Marie Tschörtner and Colin Morgan. It had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on 20 May 2022 an Austria/Luxembourg /Germany production.

Empress Elizabeth of Austria is idolized for her beauty and renowned for inspiring fashion trends. But in 1877, 'Sissi' celebrates her 40th birthday and must fight to maintain her public image by lacing her corset tighter and tighter. While Elizabeth's role has been reduced against her wishes to purely performative, her hunger for knowledge and zest for life makes her more and more restless in Vienna. She travels to England and Bavaria, visiting former lovers and old friends, seeking the excitement and purpose of her youth. With a future of strictly ceremonial duties laid out in front of her, Elizabeth rebels against the hyperbolized image of herself and comes up with a plan to protect her legacy.

"EO" 

An internationally co-produced 2022 road film directed by Jerzy Skolimowski and inspired by Robert Bresson's 1966 film "Au Hasard Balthazar," it follows the life of a donkey born in a Polish circus. The film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2022, where it won the Jury Prize. It is on the shortlist for the 2023 Academy Award for Best International Feature Film.

The world is a mysterious place when seen through the eyes of an animal. EO, a grey donkey with melancholic eyes, meets good and bad people on his life's path, experiences joy and pain, endures the wheel of fortune randomly turn his luck into disaster and his despair into unexpected bliss. But not even for a moment does he lose his innocence.

"Avatar: The Way of Water" 

From James Cameron comes this long-awaited sequel to the 2009 smash hit that still holds the record as the highest grossing film of all time.

Set more than a decade after the events of the first film, it begins to tell the story of the Sully family, the trouble that follows them, the lengths they go to keep each other safe, the battles they fight to stay alive, and the tragedies they endure.

Starring Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, and Kate Winslet.

"All the Beauty and the Bloodshed"

A 2022 documentary film which explores the career of Nan Goldin and the fall of the Sackler family. The film was directed by Laura Poitras, who said, "Nan's art and vision has inspired my work for years, and has influenced generations of filmmakers." The film premiered at the 79th Venice International Film Festival, where it was awarded the Golden Lion, making it the second documentary to win the top prize at Venice. It also screened at the 2022 New York Film Festival, where it was the festival's centerpiece film.

Directed by Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Laura Poitras, this is an epic, emotional, and interconnected story about internationally renowned artist and activist Nan Goldin told through her slideshows, intimate interviews, ground-breaking photography, and rare footage of her personal fight to hold the Sackler family accountable for the overdose crisis.

"Babylon" 

A tale of outsized ambition and outrageous excess, this film traces the rise and fall of multiple characters during an era of unbridled decadence and depravity in early Hollywood. This is a 2022 American epic period comedy-drama film written and directed by Damien Chazelle. The film features an ensemble cast that includes Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Diego Calva, Jean Smart, Tobey Maguire, Jovan Adepo, and Li Jun Li. Its plot chronicles the rise and fall of multiple characters during Hollywood's transition from silent to sound films in the late 1920s. The film received positive reviews, with praise aimed at the cinematography, score, and cast performances. It received five nominations at the 80th Golden Globe Awards, including Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy and nine nominations at the 28th Critics' Choice Awards, including Best Picture.

"Decision to Leave" 

From writer/director Park Chan-wook, one of the most prominent South Korean filmmakers working today "‘Oldboy", "The Handmaiden")

From a mountain peak in South Korea, a man plummets to his death, leaving the question: Did he jump, or was he pushed? When detective Hae-joon arrives on the scene, he begins to suspect the dead man's wife, but as he digs deeper into the investigation, he finds himself trapped in a web of deception and desire.

The film was selected to compete for the Palme d'Or at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival, where Park won Best Director, and was also selected as the South Korean entry for the Best International Feature Film at the 95th Academy Awards. It was also named one of the top 5 international films of 2022 by the National Board of Review.

"The Whale" 

From director Darren Aronofsky, known for his psychological dramas "Pi", "Requiem for a Dream", and "Black Swan".

Starring Brendan Fraser as a reclusive English teacher suffering from severe obesity who attempts to reconnect with his estranged teenage daughter for one last chance at redemption.

Fraser has received a Best Actor nomination at the 80th Golden Globe Awards and is inspiring the discussion of a “Frasierssance” that may be upon us.

"The Fabelmans" 

A 2022 American coming-of-age drama film directed by Steven Spielberg and written and produced by Tony Kushner and Spielberg. It is a semi-autobiographical story loosely based on Spielberg's adolescence and first years as a director, told through an original story of the fictional Sammy Fabelman, a young aspiring filmmaker who explores how the power of movies can help him see the truth about his dysfunctional family and those around him. The film features an ensemble cast that includes Gabriel LaBelle, Michelle Williams, Paul Dano, Seth Rogen, and Judd Hirsch. It is dedicated to the memories of Spielberg's real-life parents Arnold Spielberg and Leah Adler. The film had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 10, 2022, where it won the People's Choice Award.

Young Sammy Fabelman falls in love with movies after his parents take him to see "The Greatest Show on Earth." Armed with a camera, Sammy starts to make his own films at home, much to the delight of his supportive mother.

"The Menu"

A 2022 American comedy horror film directed by Mark Mylod, written by Seth Reiss and Will Tracy, and produced by Adam McKay, Betsy Koch, and Will Ferrell through their production banners Hyperobject Industries and Gary Sanchez Productions respectively. The film stars Ralph Fiennes, Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicholas Hoult, Hong Chau, Janet McTeer, Judith Light, and John Leguizamo. It had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Young couple Margot and Tyler (Anya Taylor-Joy and Nicholas Hoult) travel to a remote island to eat at Hawthorne, an exclusive restaurant run by celebrity chef Julian Slowik (Ralph Fiennes), who has prepared a lavish molecular gastronomy menu where food is treated as conceptual art, although his approach to cuisine has some shocking surprises for the wealthy guests.

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