Sid

Known mostly for his 1950s TV show, Your Show of Shows, Caesar was a comic genius.

Your Show of Shows was so successful and so influential, all of the comedy writers wanted to work for Caesar. And they did…Caesar was known for giving a plethora of comedians and comedy writers their start in show business…including Mel Brooks, Neil Simon, Larry Gelbart, Carl Reiner and Woody Allen. Later, Caesar worked in some movies, including two for former comedy writer Brooks…Silent Movie and History of the World, Part I. He became known with a more modern generation as “Coach Calhoun” in the two Grease movies.

Check out these Sid Caesar movies at the Niles Public Library:

The Busy Body

The Cheap Detective

Grease 2

Grease

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oscar

If you feel as passionately about film and the Oscars as I do, join me (Cecilia, Adult Services Librarian) as I review and discuss the best and the worst of Hollywood on Thursday, February 25, 2014 at 7:30pm.

I will talk about the major films of 2013, what the critics thought, and even have some good tips on predicting Oscar winners. I will guess who I think will walk away with the Oscars come Sunday, March 2, 2014 or better yet…what long-shots I would love to see carry awards home.

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Well, they are finally here…the 2014 Oscar nominations.

Announced EARLY in the morning (7:30am CST) on Jan. 16, the Academy Awards nominations capped what has been a very competitive and very active film year, as they do every year.

We’ve already had the Golden Globes. Most critics from around the country (and the world) have given their “Best of” film lists. All major awards have already posted their nominations…the Screen Actors Guild, the British Academy of Film and Television, the Directors Guild of America, the Independent Film Spirit Awards. All we were waiting for was the Oscars. And now, they are here.

Who or what film was overlooked? Who or what film was a surprise pick? Did you want Tom Hanks to be nominated for Captain Phillips, not to mention for Saving Mr. Banks? Well, he was not…for either film. Did you want James Gandolfini to get nominated for Enough Said? Well, sorry, the late actor was also overlooked. But, if you are a fan of Sally Hawkins or Christian Bale, you are in luck since they both snagged nominations this morning, relatively unexpectedly. 

Who do you think will win on Oscar Night, Mar. 2?

Enter our “Pick the Winners” Oscar contest (starting on Feb. 1), where you will vote in eight of the major Oscar categories for your chance to win “A Night Out in Niles” with gift cards to Portillos and to the theaters in Golf Mill.

Stay tuned to this blog for more Oscar news over the next coming weeks!

Here is the complete list of nominations:

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lord-of-the-rings-trilogy

When the weather is frightful, such as the New Year’s holiday snowstorm and last week’s frigid arctic cold, there are certain movies that will do the trick when you’re stuck at home.

And that’s where franchise series movies sweeps in to save the day.

For those who prefer to cozy up on the couch, sipping a hot beverage (hot coffee for me) in front of the TV, these types of films have the power to save the day and definitely suits your entertaining needs. You’re not just watching a single movie with a singular narrative, but rather a string of movies that share a common world, some with an overarching storyline such as the blockbuster Lord of the Rings and Back to the Future trilogies.

These types of movies will certainly keep you occupied when you’ve got nothing else you’d rather do but relax. Rather than fingering through a vast array of movies to watch, these shared movies have the power to pull you in like a good cliffhanger; they rope you into coming back for more.

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MOTION PICTURES

Best Drama
12 Years a Slave
Captain Phillips
Gravity
Philomena
Rush

Best Musical/Comedy
American Hustle
Her
Inside Lleweyn Davis
Nebraska
The Wolf of Wall Street

Best Director
Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity
Paul Greengrass, Captain Phillips
Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave
Alexander Payne, Nebraska
David O. Russell, American Hustle

Best Actress in a Drama
Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
Sandra Bullock, Gravity
Judi Dench, Philomena
Emma Thompson, Saving Mr. Banks
Kate Winslet, Labor Day

Best Actor in a Drama
Chiwetel Ejiofor, 12 Years a Slave
Idris Elba, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom
Tom Hanks, Captain Phillips
Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyer’s Club
Robert Redford, All Is Lost

Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy
Christian Bale, American Hustle
Bruce Dern, Nebraska
Leonardo Di Caprio, The Wolf of Wall Street
Oscar Isaac, Inside Llewyn Davis
Joaquin Phoenix, Her

Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy
Amy Adams, American Hustle
Julie Delpy, Before Midnight
Greta Gerwig, Frances Ha
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Enough Said
Meryl Streep, August: Osage County

Best Supporting Actress
Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine
Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle
Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave
Julia Roberts, August: Osage County
June Squibb, Nebraska

Best Supporting Actor
Barkhad Abdi, Captain Phillips
Daniel Bruhl, Rush
Bradley Cooper, American Hustle
Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave
Jared Leto, Dallas Buyer’s Club

Best Screenplay
Spike Jonze, Her
Bob Nelson, Nebraska
Jeff Pope/Steve Coogan, Philomena
John Ridley, 12 Years a Slave
Eric Warren Singer, David O. Russell, American Hustle

Best Foreign Language Film
Blue is the Warmest Color
The Great Beauty
The Hunt
The Past
The Wind Rises

Best Animated Feature
The Croods
Despicable Me 2
Frozen

Best Original Song
“Atlas,” The Hunger Games, Catching Fire
“Let It Go,” Frozen
“Ordinary Love,” Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom
“Please Mr. Kennedy,” Inside Llewyn Davis
“Sweeter Than Fiction,” One Chance

Best Score
Alex Ebert, All Is Lost
Alex Heffes, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom
Steven Price, Gravity
John Williams, The Book Thief
Hans Zimmer, 12 Years a Slave

TELEVISION

Best TV Comedy or Musical
Girls
Modern Family
Parks and Recreation
The Big Bang Theory
Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Best TV Drama
Breaking Bad
Downton Abbey
The Good Wife
House of Cards
Masters of Sex

Best Actress in a TV Drama
Julianna Marguiles, The Good Wife
Tatiana Maslany, Orphan Black
Taylor Schilling, Orange Is the New Black
Kerry Washington, Scandal
Robin Wright, House of Cards

Best Actress in a TV Comedy
Zooey Deschanel, New Girl
Lena Dunham, Girls
Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation

Best Actor in a TV Drama
Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Liev Schreiber, Ray Donovan
Michael Sheen, Masters of Sex
Kevin Spacey, House of Cards
James Spader, The Blacklist

Best Actor in a TV Comedy
Jason Bateman, Arrested Development
Don Cheadle, House of Lies
Michael J. Fox, The Michael J. Fox Show
Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Andy Samberg, Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Best Miniseries or TV Movie
American Horror Story: Coven
Behind the Candelabra
Dancing on the Edge
Top of the Lake
White Queen

Best Actress in a Miniseries or TV Movie
Helena Bonham Carter, Burton and Taylor
Rebecca Ferguson, White Queen
Jessica Lange, American Horror Story
Helen Mirren, Phil Spector
Elisabeth Moss, Top of the Lake

Best Actor in a Miniseries or TV Movie
Matt Damon, Behind the Candelabra
Michael Douglas, Behind the Candelabra
Chiwetel Ejiofor, Dancing on the Edge
Idris Elba, Luther
Al Pacino, Phil Spector

Best Supporting Actress in a TV Show, Miniseries or TV Movie
Jacqueline Bisset, Dancing on the Edge
Janet McTeer, White Queen
Hayden Panettiere, Nashville
Monica Potter, Parenthood
Sofia Vergara, Modern Family

Best Supporting Actor in a TV Show, Miniseries or TV Movie
Josh Charles, The Good Wife
Rob Lowe, Behind the Candelabra
Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad
Corey Stoll, House of Cards
Jon Voight, Ray Donovan

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Since Boston has been on our minds lately, I thought of featuring some Boston-set movies.  These films are all set in the historical city.  Some do not depict Boston in the best light, but nonetheless, they showcase the many facets of Beantown.

Bluehill Avenue. R. 2001.
The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day. R. 2009.
The Boondock Saints. Not Rated. 1999.
The Bostonians. Not Rated. 1984.
Children of Invention. Not Rated. 2009.
A Civil Action. PG-13. 1998.
Coma. PG. 1978.
The Departed. R. 2006.
Edge of Darkness. R. 2010.
Fear Strikes Out. Not Rated. 1956.
Fever Pitch. PG-13. 2005.
The Friends of Eddie Coyle. R. 1973.
Gone Baby Gone. R. 2007.
My Best Friend’s Girl. R. 2008.
Mystic River. R. 2003.
Saint Ralph. PG-13. 2004.
The Thomas Crown Affair. R. 1968.
3 Americas. Not Rated. 2008.
The Town. R. 2010. (also on blu-ray)

 

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With the impending re-release of both Titanic (1997) and Beauty and the Beast (1991) in 3D, I decided I am fed up. Now, I confess to taking a 3D class in college (the class was actually Widescreen, 3D and Stereophonic sound). And I also confess that I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to see the 3D version of Alfred Hitchcock’s Dial “M” for Murder, that was filmed and never released. If anyone could do 3D like a master, it would ONLY be the Master of Suspense. But, I am tired of every movie and its mother being filmed in 3D, whether it is warranted or not. And RE-RELEASING already shot films just to capitalize on the 3D bandwagon is THE LAST STRAW. Where will it end, I thought.

So, I put together a list of other “sensible” (sarcasm intended) 3D re-releases. If any of these come out in cinemas, I’m moving to Mongolia and living in among the yak herders in a nice yurt!

The African Queen
All of those mosquitoes. All of that unbridled WWII passion.

All The President’s Men
All of that typing.

Amadeus
All of that piano playing.

Babe
Little pig. Sheep. Ducks. Dogs. Need I say more.

Bridge on the River Kwai
Madness. MADNESS.

Caligula
It can only improve it, right?

Chariots of Fire
Running, running, running.

Citizen Kane
Rosebud. IN 3D!!!!!!!!!

Fargo
Marge’s belly comin’ at you like never before.

Field of Dreams
The corn. The ghosts. Go the distance.

Forrest Gump
Run, Forrest, run!

Gone with the Wind
Frankly, my dear, I would love to see Tara in 3D.

The Graduate
One word: plastics.

The Hustler
All those pool balls. All those cue sticks.

It’s a Wonderful Life
3D could only improve Mr. Potter’s disposition.

Last Tango in Paris
Butter.

The Last Temptation of Christ
Would only enhance the controversy.

The Lost Weekend
Would make it easier to find those hidden bottles.

The Maltese Falcon
The stuff that dreams are made of.

Message in a Bottle
See above @ The Lost Weekend.

No Country for Old Men
The guns and the oxygen tank alone. Not to mention the haircut.

No Way Out (1987)
And I thought that limo ride couldn’t get any better.

Oceans’ 11 (2001)
Eye candy comin’ at you!

The Odd Couple
Felix wants 3D. Oscar hates it.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
Nurse Ratched softer, more three-dimensional side.

Raging Bull
Pow, right in the kisser.

Roxanne
The Nose.

Silence of the Lambs
Do I really need to elaborate here?

Singin’ in the Rain
All of those raindrop. So lifelike.

Some Like It Hot
You should see the gams on Curtis and Lemmon.

The Sting
3D would just make the cool cooler.

Tootsie
You should see the gams on Hoffman.

Unforgiven
William Mony killed women, children and 2D.

(P.S. I hesitated posting this since it’s so snarky, but take it for what it is…a movie lover’s plea for Hollywood to wake up and start creating new material and even new technology!)

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So, what did we think of the show?  Well, even though Billy (Crystal) was back, the show still lacked some of its verve and vibrance from previous years.  True, it was better than last year –but 2011 wasn’t exactly a good year to compare things with, right?  I mean at least Billy Crystal wasn’t stoned (or at least didn’t appear stoned) and he genuinely seemed like he was excited about hosting and being there.  One good thing I can say for sure — it was SHORT.  I cannot remember a year when the Oscars doesn’t hit the 3.5 hour mark.  VERY GOOD in the length dept.  In my own opinion, I could have done without the Cirque du Soleil and the overly self-serving montages of actors sharing why they love the movies.  We get it…they are IN movies, so naturally they will LOVE movies.  Move on!  
Aside from all of that, I thought Billy Crystal did a good job of keeping the show moving forward at a good pace.  Of course, there are always going to be draggy speeches and long, drawn-out parts (it is the Oscars after-all — this is the pinnacle for Hollywood’s ego).  Over-all, though, I thought the show was pretty entertaining. 
Now, for the winners (and losers).  I am still a little sore that I was deprived of another George Clooney acceptance speech.  And though Jean Dujardin was good in The Artist, Clooney was uncharacteristicly excellent in The Descendants…which is saying a lot considering that he’s usually gives strong performances (Solaris, anyone???).  And I though I love Meryl Streep like most other movie fans, I really, really wanted to see the double hit of Octavia Spencer (who won) and Viola Davis (who lost to Streep) from The Help.  Davis got a lot of flack from being in a movie where she plays a Southern maid and I thought she really knocked it out of the park, regardless of controversy.  Streep acted the heck out of Maggie Thatcher in The Iron Lady (just as Helen Mirren did several years ago with Queen Elizabeth II in her Oscar-winning performance in The Queen) but Meryl has won twice before and doesn’t need another Oscar to prove her worth.  An Oscar for Viola would have confirmed what moviegoers have known for a while: she’s a powerhouse actress who’s finally getting the acclaim she deserves. 
Just my two cents from someone who loves the Oscars, loves the movies and loves talking about both!

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Best Picture
War Horse
The Artist
*WINNER
Moneyball
The Descendants
The Tree of Life
Midnight in Paris
The Help
Hugo
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

Best Actress
Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs
Rooney Mara, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Viola Davis, The Help
Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady *WINNER
Michelle Williams, My Week With Marilyn

Best Actor
Demian Bichir, A Better Life
George Clooney, The Descendants
Jean Dujardin, The Artist *WINNER
Gary Oldman, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Brad Pitt, Moneyball

Best Director
Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist *WINNER
Alexander Payne, The Descendants
Martin Scorsese, Hugo
Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris
Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life

Short Film (Animated)
Dimanche/Sunday
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore *
WINNER
La Luna
A Morning Stroll
Wild Life
 

Documentary Short Subject
The Barber of Birmingham: Foot Soldier of the Civil Rights Movement
God Is the Bigger Elvis
Incident in New Baghdad
Saving Face
*WINNER
The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom

Short Film (Live Action)
Pentecost
Raju
The Shore
*WINNER
Time Freak
Tuba Atlantic

Best Original Screenplay
Michel Hazanivicius, The Artist
Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo, Bridesmaids
Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris *WINNER
J.C. Chandor, Margin Call
Asghar Farhadi, A Separation

Best Adapted Screenplay
Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, The Descendants *WINNER
John Logan, Hugo
George Clooney, Beau Willimon and Grant Heslov, The Ides of March
Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin and Stan Chervin, Moneyball
Bridget O’Connor and Peter Straughan, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy


Music (Original Song)
“Man or Muppet” from The Muppets, Bret McKenzie *WINNER
“Real in Rio” from Rio, Sergio Mendes, Carlinhos Brown and Siedah Garrett

Music (Original Score)
John Williams, The Adventures of Tintin
Ludovic Bource, The Artist *WINNER
Howard Shore, Hugo
Alberto Iglesias, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
John Williams, War Horse

Supporting Actor
Kenneth Branagh, My Week With Marilyn
Jonah Hill, Moneyball
Nick Nolte, Warrior
Christopher Plummer, Beginners *WINNER
Max von Sydow, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

Visual Effects
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
Hugo
*WINNER
Real Steel
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon



Best Animated Feature
A Cat in Paris
Chico & Rita
Kung Fu Panda 2
Puss in Boots
Rango
*WINNER

Documentary Feature
Hell and Back Again
If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front
Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory
Pina
Undefeated
*WINNER

Sound Mixing
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Hugo
*WINNER
Moneyball
Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon
War Horse



Sound Editing
Drive
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Hugo
*WINNER
Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon
War Horse

Film Editing
Anne-Sophie Bion and Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Kevin Tent, The Descendants
Kirk Baxter and Angus Wall, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo *WINNER
Thelma Schoonmaker, Hugo
Christopher Tellefsen, Moneyball

Supporting Actress
Berenice Bejo, The Artist
Jessica Chastain, The Help
Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids
Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
Octavia Spencer, The Help *WINNER

Best Foreign Feature
Bullhead
Footnote
In Darkness
Monsieur Lazhar
A Separation
*WINNER


Makeup
Martial Corneville, Lynn Johnston and Matthew W. Mungle, Albert Nobbs
Nick Dudman, Amanda Knight and Lisa Tomblin, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
Mark Coulier and J. Roy Helland, The Iron Lady *WINNER

Costume Design
Anonymous
The Artist
*WINNER
Hugo
Jane Eyre
W.E.

Art Direction
The Artist
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
Hugo *
WINNER
Midnight in Paris
War Horse

Cinematography
The Artist
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Hugo
*WINNER
The Tree of Life
War Horse

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