Everything's coming up golden for Michel Hazanavicius' black-and-white gem, with The Artist leading the Golden Globes 2012 nominations list with a solid six. That's not bad for a silent film. In fact, it's flipping fantastic, earning nods for Best Director, Actor, Screenplay, Music, Supporting Actress and Best Picture - expect all those Musical or Comedy appendices to fully convert to straight nods at the Oscars - after its wins from the Boston and New York Critics, The Artist is now definitely an awards front-runner. Even more so than War Horse, which galloped into the Best Picture, Drama category as expected.
The only thing more predictable for the Hollywood Foreign Press Association was its undying love for George Clooney, with both The Ides of March and The Descendants getting their fair share of nominations.
Surprises came in the form of Bridesmaids getting a Best Picture nod alongside My Week with Marilyn in the Musical or Comedy category - let's be honest, these subdivisions make even less sense now than they ever did before. Other nods, like Leonardo DiCaprio for J Edgar (reportedly a bit of a dud), are bizarre, especially when Ryan Gosling gets a nod for Crazy, Stupid, Love and not for Drive. (Apparently that bit with the hammer wasn't hilarious enough for Best Actor, Musical or Comedy.)
More exciting than that is Kristen Wiig's Best Actress nomination. It's always nice to see my future wife doing well. Even better news is Brendan Gleeson's nod for The Guard - the kind of thing that I was relying on BAFTA to support, alongside Tyrannosaur. Could it be the start of some serious Gleeson awards momentum? Not that it matters, because Michael Fassbender is looking increasingly like the acting alpha male.
Otherwise, it's nice to see The Help get some attention and Rango easily deserves its animated nom (no Kung Fu Panda 2?), while The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo's soundtrack nod is a promising sign that Fincher's superb adaptation of Stieg Larsson's novel isn't completely out of the awards circuit.
But there are worse snubs. Take Shelter, Martha Marcy May Marlene, Tree of Life and Coriolanus all got left out, and you wonder why exactly th-- hey look, it's a tap dancing dog!
It's lovely to see that The Artist is top dog (sadly there's no Golden Globe award for Best Dog) in a competition that, along with Hugo's raft of HFPA adoration, is celebrating the old-school magic of cinema. But if period brilliance is the trendy thing right now, where are the nominations for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy?
And don't even get me started on why The Muppets haven't been nominated for Best Song.
Read on for the full list of 2012 Golden Globes nominations.
Director: Woody Allen
Cast: Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Michael Sheen, Marion Cotillard
“I’d love to live in a flat in Paris in the 1920s,” says Gill Pender (Wilson) wistfully. Gill is in thrall to the French capital, and dreams of escaping his unfinished book and unsympathetic fiancée, Inez (McAdams), to a time when the town was at its best. The cafés, the writers, the rain... “The only thing missing is the tuberculosis,” shoots back Inez’s friend Paul (Sheen). Midnight in Paris is a charming piece full of nostalgia, wit and – most importantly – laughs.
"I'm in a perplexing situation..." I know exactly what Owen Wilson means. Hiding upstairs from the Arsenal Champions League match, the only other source of distraction is the Midnight in Paris UK trailer. Both could be painful to watch.
But the trailer for Midnight in Paris gives me hope. Not just because it's got Owen Wilson perfectly cast as the director's neurotic persona ("You know how I like to think in the shower, get all the positive ions going," he babbles at his inquisitive wife) but also because Michael Sheen is in it. And not just any Michael Sheen. This is Michael Sheen with a beard.
Playing Allen's other stock character, the pseudo-intellectual, Sheen looks like his comic timing is on top form - unlike Anthony Hopkins in Allen's last mess, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger. Add in Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard, and some pretty Parisian backdrops, and this sparky trailer could be the sign of something special.
I hope so. Let's face it: it's not as if Arsenal are going to surprise me any time soon. And not even Arsene Wenger could beat Owen Wilson when it comes to saying the words "positive ions". It's worth watching the trailer several times just for that.
Midnight in Paris is out in UK cinemas on Friday 7th October. Read on for the full video, or head over this way to see the Midnight in Paris poster. (You could also visit the film's official Facebook page for pictures and stuff.)
Fans of Takashi Miike and Woody Allen have long shared much in common. An appreciation of the funny things in life, a fondness for the clever use of subtitles, and a hardened love of unremitting violence.
So both legions of cinemagoers will be excited to see the new trailers for each of their latest features. The main thing they have in common? They're both rather awesome.
13 Assassins (to all intents and purposes an extreme remake of Seven Samurai) is an odd direction for Woody Allen to take. Certainly, there's a man fighting out of his depth against the current of society, but the screenplay seems to replace witty one-liners with the bloody severing of limbs.
It's not an unwelcome decision, but it is unexpected. After hitting Barcelona and London, he probably just came up with the idea to get a free trip to Japan. Here's hoping for a blood-splattered Annie Hall. At least he hasn't cast himself as one of the samurai - that would be embarrassing, especially with the glasses and everything.
Verdict Better than Cassandra's Dream.
Even more surprising than Woody Allen's 13 Assassins is Takashi Miike's Midnight in Paris.
A tale of romance and awkward neuroses, it's a blend of old-school Jewish humour and intellectual buffoonery - in other words, nothing like anything the Audition director has done before. And that includes family-friendly superhero flick Zebraman.
Owen Wilson is a great choice for the lead, but after all the accordion music pumped over the top, you do wonder when exactly he'll get a sword out and start hacking French people to bits. Or at least get down to some solid rape. Although Carla Bruni's way too classy for that.
Verdict Needs more violence.
Fox McCloud has spent years defending the Lylat system, but there's one enemy he's never been able to defeat... himself.
So this is pretty much the greatest thing that has ever been done involving space, Wes Anderson and stop-motion furry puppets - unless Wes Anderson were to actually make this film. Particular highlights include the banjo and Owen Wilson's Falcon saying "Einstein".
Fact of the day: you can't barrel roll away from who you are.
Director: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly
Cast: Owen Wilson, Jason Sudeikis
It’s been a long time since There’s Something About Mary and the Farrelly Brothers haven't aged well. In fact, they’ve not aged at all. Hall Pass is a mediocre mess of crude, gross-out rubbishness. It’s wrong to expect anything more from the Farrelly Brothers, but can we not even hope for a single laugh? To be fair, there is one joke that will make you smile. It occurs during the end credits.
UPDATE: Hello to Jason Isaacs, Emily Mortimer, Joe Mantegna, Peter Jacobson and Thomas Kretschmann. They're all in the cast too.
"Finn McMissile, British Intelligence."
IT'S MICHAEL CAINE!
That's pretty much the reaction of everyone when they see the new teaser trailer for Cars 2. Yes, The Caine will be in Pixar's animated sequel, playing a missile-toting, handbrake-skidding secret agent. He's a car, of course.
Now that doesn't sound much like the original Cars, does it? That's because it isn't. Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) and Mater (Larry the Cable) head to Tokyo for the world's first World Gran Prix. And promptly enter a world of international espionage.
"What about Radiator Springs?" some children with shiny lunchboxes will cry. Screw Radiator Springs! I hated the first Cars, so thank God they're driving in a completely different direction. Pixar's 12th feature length film promises "secret agents, menacing villains and international racing". So it's basically Speed Racer. Which might not be a bad thing...
Cars 2 is revving up next year on Friday 22nd July. Read on for the trailer. And then sign our petition for Larry the Cable Guy to stop voicing imaginary pick-up trucks and start fixing my Virgin Media box.
Remember Cars? That lacklustre piece of dull Pixar animation? The film with the cars? Well, now we have a teaser trailer for Cars 2. And surprise, surprise, it's got cars in it.
Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) and Mater (Larry the Cable Guy) are back in new secret agent roles, causing havoc and chaos with their incompetence. Which, you know, fits in nicely with the sentiment of John Lasseter's Route 66-loving original. Yawn.
Cars 2 (in 3D) will arrive in June next year. Lunchboxes will be available from Christmas onwards.
It's official everyone: Dustin Hoffman will be in Little Fockers. To clarify for those who think this is stating the obvious, he previously wasn't in it at all. But now Deadline have confirmed that Hoffman has returned for reshoots on the comedy.
Little Fockers, the third in the Meet the Parents series, finished shooting a while back, albeit without Bernie Focker - he couldn't agree a deal to appear in the film. But Universal have agreed to splash some of their spare cash (Fockers finished under budget) on wooing Dustin back for additional "pivotal" scenes.
Hoffman joins the same cast as before, namely Barbra Streisand, Robert De Niro and Ben Stiller, for several scenes, along with the rest of the cast (including Owen Wilson and new characters Harvey Keitel and Jessica Alba) for a large final scene.
Test screening results are reported by Deadline's insider as being "54% excellent, 85% total favorable, 73% definitely recommend", which are actually quite strong. But the studio apparently want to "make it better; it's an investment for the future of the franchise".
Little Fockers is directed by Paul Weitz and hits UK cinemas on Friday 22nd December. You can see the trailer in our videos section over here.
Director: Paul Weitz
Cast: Robert De Niro, Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Jessica Alba, Laura Dern, Harvey Keitel, Barbra Streisand
Release Date: Friday 22nd December
The test of wills between Jack Byrnes (Robert De Niro) and Greg Focker (Ben Stiller) escalates to new heights of comedy in the third installment of the blockbuster series. It has taken 10 years, two little Fockers with wife Pam (Polo) and countless hurdles for Greg to finally get "in" with his tightly wound father-in-law, Jack. After the cash-strapped dad takes a job moonlighting for a drug company, however, Jack’s suspicions about his favorite male nurse come roaring back.
When Greg and Pam’s entire clan — including Pam’s lovelorn ex, Kevin (Owen Wilson) — descends for the twins’ birthday party, Greg must prove to the skeptical Jack that he’s fully capable as the man of the house. But with all the misunderstandings, spying and covert missions, will Greg pass Jack’s final test and become the family’s next patriarch… or will the circle of trust be broken for good?