Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Gravity (4DX)

Gravity
Gravity, directed by Alfonso Cuaron, stars Sandra Bullock and George Clooney as two astronauts who are left stranded after satellite debris destroys their space shuttle, the Explorer. To survive, they must reach nearby space stations (the International Space Station and the Chinese Tiangong station) before their oxygen supply is depleted. Cuaron previously directed Y Tu Mama Tambien, one of the key films of the Mexican Nueva Ola (New Wave) movement.

Gravity relies extensively on photo-realistic CGI, not only for the backgrounds and spacecraft, but even for the astronauts' spacesuits. In some sequences, the actors' faces are the only non-CG elements in the frame; a minor character, who appears in the first scene, is entirely CG, blurring the boundaries between live action and digital animation.

Cuaron's Children Of Men was acclaimed for its long takes, and Gravity begins with a seventeen-minute sequence without a visible edit. In both films, however, these shots consist of multiple takes connected by seamless digital transitions, creating the illusion of a single take. (Touch Of Evil famously begins with an extended single take; Timecode and Russian Ark were both filmed as a continuous, unedited digital shot.)

Gravity occasionally resembles Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, and it features some direct tributes to that film, including a floating pen suspended in zero gravity. The ending was presumably inspired by another science-fiction classic, as Sandra Bullock's character has the same determination as Ripley from Alien. There is also a reference to Wall-E, with a fire extinguisher being used as a propulsion device.

I saw Gravity in 4DX, which combines 3D projection with motion-controlled seats, wind effects, smoke, scents, and water vapour sprayed into the audience. The process was developed in South Korea, and was first used for Eric Brevig's 3D remake of Journey To The Center Of The Earth. Gravity has also been released in 3D, 2D, and IMAX DMR 3D.

4DX is a gimmick, applying 4D effects from theme-park attractions to feature-length Hollywood films. Other cinematic gimmicks include Cinerama, Sensurround, Smell-O-Vision, Aroma-Rama, Aroma-Scope, Odorama, Emergo, Percepto, and Illusion-O - the last three all developed by William Castle.

Spanish Week 2013

Spanish Week 2013
Una Pistola En Cada Mano
Spanish Week 2013 began in Bangkok on 14th October and finished on 20th October. The event included a film festival at SF World (CentralWorld), with free screenings of new Spanish films.

I saw Una Pistola En Cada Mano, directed by Cesc Gay, on 19th October. It's structured as a series of vignettes featuring a group of middle-aged (and all heterosexual) men going through various relationship problems including impotence, infidelity, and divorce. It's being marketed as a comedy, though its dysfunctional relationships are pretty depressing.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

ดูหนังกับโดม

ดูหนังกับโดม
2001: A Space Odyssey
This Saturday, Kubrick's masterpiece 2001: A Space Odyssey will be screened at the National Film Archive at Salaya. The screening is part of ดูหนังกับโดม, a season of films introduced by the Archive's founder, Dome Sukwong.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Moments That Made The Movies

Moments That Made The Movies
In his new book Moments That Made The Movies, David Thomson analyses seventy classic film scenes. Each essay is accompanied by several gorgeous photographs (frame enlargements, rather than publicity stills). For film lovers, of course, this is a wonderfully evocative book. The obvious classics (Psycho, Casablanca, Citizen Kane, The Searchers, etc.) are all included, along with a few esoteric choices. As Thomson explains in his introduction: "There are surprises, offbeat choices, perhaps even capricious or provocative selections, as well as plenty of films that you might have guessed would be included - though not always with the moments you anticipated".

Thomson previously wrote A Biographical Dictionary Of Film, Have You Seen...?, The Moment Of Psycho, and The Big Screen. He was the screenwriter for the documentary Gone With The Wind: The Making Of A Legend, and a contributor to 39 Steps To The Genius Of Hitchcock. He wrote a short History Of The Movies In Four Parts for the Wall Street Journal last year, and he also writes regularly for GQ magazine.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

The Art Of Movie Storyboards

The Art Of Movie Storyboards
The Art Of Movie Storyboards: Visualising The Action Of The World's Greatest Films, by Fionnuala Halligan, is a collection of storyboard excerpts from around forty films. It was published in America as Movie Storyboards: The Art Of Visualizing Screenplays.

The book showcases the work of pre-visualisation artists in the film-production process. Some of the greatest production designers (such as Saul Bass and William Cameron Menzies) are included, and plenty of classic films (including Psycho, Gone With The Wind, The Big Sleep, Apocalypse Now, and Raging Bull) are represented.

Most of the storyboards were not produced by the directors themselves, though there are a few notable exceptions, including Martin Scorsese's drawings for Raging Bull and Akira Kurosawa's preparatory paintings for Ran. (There is some overlap with Karl French's book Art By Film Directors.) Scorsese's rough sketches and Kurosawa's exquisite artworks represent two opposite approaches to storyboarding, and Scorsese's is the more conventional method: storyboards are not generally intended as works of art, they function instead as blueprints for the director and cinematographer.

The book reproduces storyboard frames, though corresponding stills from the films themselves are not included, so there's no way of comparing them directly. Also, some of the films Halligan selects, especially those in the final chapter, are very far from classics.

International New York Times

International New York Times
Today, the International New York Times published its first issue, following the rebranding of the International Herald Tribune by its owner, The New York Times. Today's newspaper includes a letter from publisher Arthur Sulzberger who explains that "we are creating a single, unified global media brand". The International New York Times is now part of a triumvirate of international newspapers, alongside The Wall Street Journal and the Financial Times.

Blue Jasmine

Blue Jasmine
Discussion of Woody Allen's films generally boils down to two questions. Why won't he make more of his "early, funny" comedies? (An issue he dealt with in Stardust Memories.) And, after plenty of near-misses, when will he make a true return to form? His latest film, Blue Jasmine, isn't a comedy (despite co-starring comedian Louis CK), though it's the closest he's come to a return to form in almost two decades.

In the 1970s, Allen's "early, funny" films (Sleeper, Love & Death), full of one-liners and slapstick, were followed by romantic comedies with fully-developed characters (the masterpieces Annie Hall and Manhattan). In the 1980s and 1990s, he balanced comedy with observations about life and relationships (Zelig, The Purple Rose Of Cairo, Hannah & Her Sisters, Crimes & Misdemeanors, Husbands & Wives, Mighty Aphrodite), with occasional returns to broad farce (Broadway Danny Rose, Manhattan Murder Mystery).

Then, after Deconstructing Harry in 1997 (his last great work), Allen's films began a sharp decline in quality (The Curse Of The Jade Scorpion, and other flops). Unable to secure funding in America, he made a series of touristy films in Europe (Match Point, Scoop, You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Midnight In Paris, To Rome With Love), though he returned to New York for Whatever Works.

Allen had an unexpected commercial hit with Midnight In Paris, and Match Point was a critical success in America, though he hasn't made anything approaching a classic for almost twenty years. That is, until now, because Blue Jasmine is arguably his best film since Deconstructing Harry. The ensemble cast is consistently excellent (as in many of Allen's films), though Cate Blanchette gives an extraordinary, unselfconscious central performance as Jasmine, an unstable New York socialite whose rich husband was convicted of fraud. Alec Baldwin (the highlight of To Rome With Love) is perfectly cast as the charming fraudster, whose downfall is modelled on that of Bernie Madoff.

With Blue Jasmine, Allen is clearly paying homage to A Streetcar Named Desire. Like Streetcar's Blanche DuBois, Jasmine is a delusional, tragic figure forced to move in with her working-class sister. (Jasmine's sister, Ginger, lives in a supposedly run-down - though actually spacious and rather nice - apartment in San Francisco. Jasmine's fish-out-of-water experience is juxtaposed with flashbacks to her previous New York life.) She forms a new relationship, though her boyfriend eventually discovers her past, as Blanche's boyfriend Mitch does in Streetcar. Ginger's fiance and ex-husband are both echoes of Streetcar's brutish Stanley Kowalski, though they're more sympathetic characters than Stanley. (Ginger mocks her ex's "Polish jokes", just as Blanche dismissed Stanley as a "Polack".) There's no sexual tension between them and Jasmine, though the antagonism, claustrophobia, and class conflict are familiar from Streetcar.

Monday, 14 October 2013

11th World Film(s) Festival of Bangkok

11th World Film Festival of Bangkok
Boundary
Stranger By The Lake
Synecdoche, New York
The 11th World Film Festival of Bangkok takes place next month at the SF World cinema (CentralWorld). It will open on 15th November, and will run until 24th November. (Oddly, the Festival's poster calls it the World Films [sic.] Festival.)

Nontawat Numbenchapol's controversial Thai documentary Boundary will be screened on 17th and 18th November. Charlie Kaufman's directorial debut Synecdoche, New York will be shown on 16th November. (Kaufman wrote the screenplays for Adaptation, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, and Being John Malkovich.)

Alain Guiraudie's Stranger By The Lake, one of the most explicit gay dramas ever made, has also been selected, and will be shown on 21st and 22nd November. Filmed entirely on location, it features a man who witnesses a murder yet falls in love with the killer. The central character makes increasingly reckless decisions; his friend, a lonely bi-curious older man, is the only sympathetic character. The final reel increases the suspense, and veers towards Cruising-style excess, before ending abruptly.

The Festival is organised by Kriengsak Silakong, who I interviewed last year. (The 6th, 7th, and 8th Festivals were held at Paragon Cineplex; the 5th, 9th, and 10th took place at Esplanade Cineplex.)

Unfortunately, one film has been withdrawn from the Festival. The Thai Film Board denied permission to show To Singapore, With Love, directed by Tan Pin Pin, as the director did not apply for a permit before filming the documentary in Thailand. It seems that a film is withdrawn from a Thai film festival almost every year: Persepolis was banned from the 2007 Bangkok International Film Festival, This Area Is Under Quarantine was banned from the 7th World Film Festival, and Insects In The Backyard was banned after its screening at the 8th World Film Festival.

International Herald Tribune

International Herald Tribune
Turning The Page
Breathless
The International Herald Tribune published its final issue today (along with a historical supplement, Turning The Page), and from tomorrow its name will change to the International New York Times. The change comes a decade after the newspaper was purchased outright by The New York Times.

The International Herald Tribune was founded in 1887 as The New York Herald, and it became the New York Herald Tribune in 1924. Its most recent title dates from 1967. The International Herald Tribune is the world's leading international newspaper, though culturally it will also be remembered for its appearance in Jean-Luc Godard's film Breathless.

Friday, 11 October 2013

Paradoxocracy

Paradoxocracy
Paradoxocracy
The Thai political documentary Paradoxocracy is currently showing at House Rama (RCA, Bangkok). It was previously screened at the House of Commons cafe in Thonburi. It will also be shown this Sunday at the National Film Archive in Salaya.

Sunday, 6 October 2013

The 500 Greatest Movies Of All Time!

The 500 Greatest Movies Of All Time!
The current issue of the Australian edition of Empire magazine is a special 500 Greatest Movies Of All Time! edition. The list is based on The 500 Greatest Movies Of All Time (without the exclamation mark), published by Empire UK in November 2008. The UK list was compiled from votes from readers (including me) and members of the film industry.

The Australian edition is introduced by editor Daniel Murphy as "a global poll", though he doesn't mention that the poll was actually conducted five years ago. Sixty-one films from the original 500 have been replaced: recent films have been added, along with some notable Australian films. Murphy writes, for example: "The Castle claiming top gong for an Australian film at number 72? That's one to make you smile", implying that The Castle was voted for by an international readership. In fact, The Castle didn't feature in the 2008 list, and was presumably added (with the other sixty films) by the magazine's Australian editorial team.

The 500 Greatest Movies Of All Time! are as follows:

1. The Godfather
2. Raiders Of The Lost Ark
3. Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back
4. The Shawshank Redemption
5. Jaws
6. GoodFellas
7. Apocalypse Now
8. Singin' In The Rain
9. Pulp Fiction
10. Fight Club
11. Raging Bull
12. The Apartment
13. Chinatown
14. Once Upon A Time In The West
15. The Dark Knight
16. 2001: A Space Odyssey
17. Taxi Driver
18. Casablanca
19. The Godfather II
20. Blade Runner
21. The Third Man
22. Star Wars IV: A New Hope
23. Back To The Future
24. The Lord Of The Rings I: The Fellowship Of The Ring
25. Toy Story III
26. The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly
27. The Avengers
28. Dr Strangelove
29. Some Like It Hot
30. Citizen Kane
31. Skyfall
32. Die Hard
33. Aliens
34. Gone With The Wind
35. Amour
36. Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid
37. Alien
38. The Lord Of The Rings III: The Return Of The King
39. Terminator II: Judgment Day
40. Andrei Rublev
41. A Clockwork Orange
42. Heat
43. The Matrix
44. Vertigo
45. The 400 Blows
46. Kind Hearts & Coronets
47. The Big Lebowski
48. Schindler's List
49. Psycho
50. ET: The Extra-Terrestrial
51. On The Waterfront
52. This Is Spinal Tap
53. Seven Samurai
54. Evil Dead II
55. 8½
56. The Shining
57. The Lord Of The Rings II: The Two Towers
58. La Dolce Vita
59. Casino Royale
60. Lawrence Of Arabia
61. His Girl Friday
62. Close Encounters Of The Third Kind
63. Come & See
64. Inception
65. The Usual Suspects
66. The Graduate
67. Sunset Boulevard
68. Oldboy
69. Tokyo Story
70. Edward Scissorhands
71. Harold & Maude
72. The Castle
73. Annie Hall
74. Three Colours: Red
75. Stand By Me
76. The Night Of The Hunter
77. 12 Angry Men
78. The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre
79. Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind
80. A Matter Of Life & Death
81. Manhattan
82. Spartacus
83. Rosemary's Baby
84. The Thin Red Line
85. The Life & Death Of Colonel Blimp
86. Batman Begins
87. The Great Escape
88. Brazil
89. Blue Velvet
90. LA Confidential
91. Carrie
92. Iron Man III
93. The King Of Comedy
94. Ferris Bueller's Day Off
95. Magnolia
96. When Harry Met Sally
97. Star Wars VI: Return Of The Jedi
98. Yojimbo
99. Once Upon A Time In America
100. Spirit Of The Beehive
101. American Beauty
102. The Wild Bunch
103. Reservoir Dogs
104. North By Northwest
105. Toy Story
106. Network
107. Raising Arizona
108. The Hustler
109. One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest
110. Rear Window
111. The Rules Of The Game
112. A Man For All Seasons
113. An American Werewolf In London
114. The King's Speech
115. Touch Of Evil
116. Before Sunset
117. Fitzcarraldo
118. I Am Cuba
119. Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy
120. The Conversation
121. Blazing Saddles
122. Rio Bravo
123. Miller’s Crossing
124. Withnail & I
125. The Wages Of Fear
126. The Battle Of Algiers
127. Los Olvidados
128. The Princess Bride
129. A Woman Under The Influence
130. The Silence Of The Lambs
131. Breathless
132. Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid
133. The Sting
134. Lost In Translation
135. Harvey
136. The Man Who Would Be King
137. The Last Of The Mohicans
132. Pan's Labyrinth
138. Life Of Pi
139. Double Indemnity
140. Seven
141. Duck Soup
142. Amadeus
143. Dances With Wolves
144. Cool Hand Luke
145. Avatar
146. As Good As It Gets
147. Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs
148. The Dark Knight Rises
149. There Will Be Blood
150. Sophie's Choice
151. Shampoo
152. Cyrano de Bergerac
153. Notorious
154. Z
155. The Red Shoes
156. The French Connection
157. Boogie Nights
158. Gladiator
159. The Innocents
160. Betty Blue
161. Badlands
162. Saving Private Ryan
163. True Romance
164. Unforgiven
165. The Royal Tenenbaums
166. Being There
167. The Year Of Living Dangerously
168. A Nightmare On Elm Street
169. The Bridge On The River Kwai
170. The Searchers
171. Don’t Look Now
172. Partie De Campagne
173. Goldfinger
174. Tootsie
175. District 9
176. Viridiana
177. La Haine
178. Django Unchained
179. Brief Encounter
180. The Wizard Of Oz
181. Memento
182. Superman
183. Rushmore
184. A Canterbury Tale
185. City Of God
186. Hellzapoppin'
187. Toy Story II
188. To Kill A Mockingbird
189. Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls
190. Performance
191. Le Samourai
192. Dirty Harry
193. Paths Of Glory
194. Lincoln
195. The Big Country
196. The Wrestler
197. Brokeback Mountain
198. Ghostbusters
199. Big
200. Eraserhead
201. Ed Wood
202. Bicycle Thieves
203. It's A Wonderful Life
204. Amelie
205. Point Break
206. Fargo
207. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
208. Before Sunrise
209. JFK
210. The Killer
211. The Intouchables
212. Monty Python's Life Of Brian
213. Bride Of Frankenstein
214. The Artist
215. The Exorcist
216. The Misfits
217. The Departed
218. Local Hero
219. Platoon
220. Argo
221. Songs From The Second Floor
222. Army Of Shadows
223. Jackie Brown
224. M
225. The Magnificent Seven
226. Sunday Bloody Sunday
227. M. Hulot's Holiday
228. The Outlaw Josey Wales
229. Far From Heaven
230. McCabe & Mrs Miller
231. Star Trek
232. The Snowton Murders
233. Distant Voices, Still Lives
234. Get Carter
235. Romeo & Juliet
236. Leon
237. No Country For Old Men
238. Festen
239. Howl's Moving Castle
240. Shaun Of The Dead
241. Indiana Jones & The Temple Of Doom
242. Jurassic Park
243. The Bourne Ultimatum
244. Battle Royale
245. Black Narcissus
246. Delicatessen
247. Requiem For A Dream
248. Cinema Paradiso
249. Forrest Gump
250. Brighton Rock
251. King Kong
252. Downfall
253. Heimat
254. Dazed & Confused
255. The Philadelphia Story
256. All That Jazz
257. Pandora's Box
258. My Darling Clementine
259. Sunrise
260. Darling
261. First Blood
262. The Leopard
263. Let The Right One In
254. The Verdict
264. Ninotchka
265. Port Of Shadows
266. The Black Cat
267. Groundhog Day
268. The Blues Brothers
269. Field Of Dreams
270. Roman Holiday
271. The Hangover
272. Das Boot
273. American Graffiti
274. AI: Artificial Intelligence
275. Crimes & Misdemeanors
276. Wall-E
277. The Lady Vanishes
278. A Place In The Sun
279. Beasts Of The Southern Wild
280. The Bird With The Crystal Plumage
281. The Maltese Falcon
282. My Neighbour Totoro
283. Sin City
284. Looper
285. On The Town
286. Carlito's Way
287. National Lampoon's Animal House
288. Mad Max II
289. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
290. The Godfather III
291. Ran
292. Scarface
293. L'Avventura
294. Secrets & Lies
295. The Thing
296. Solaris
297. Rashomon
298. Rocco & His Brothers
299. Chopper
300. La Maman & La Putan
301. The Red Balloon
302. The Untouchables
303. La Belle & La Bete
304. Who Framed Roger Rabbit
305. All The President's Men
306. It Happened One Night
307. La Cercle Rouge
308. The Palm Beach Story
309. Sawdust & Tinsel
310. Love & Death
311. The Best Years Of Our Lives
312. Black Swan
313. Radio Days
314. The Prestige
315. Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade
316. Midnight Cowboy
318. Gremlins
319. The Terminator
320. American History X
321. Suspiria
322. Battleship Potemkin
323. Sweet Smell Of Success
324. Trainspotting
325. Midnight Run
326. Rebecca
327. The Lion King
328. Braveheart
329. Funny Face
330. Aladdin
331. The Last Seduction
332. Pan's Labyrinth
333. Kill Bill I
334. Out Of Sight
335. The Nightmare Before Christmas
336. The Truman Show
337. The Green Mile
338. The Sixth Sense
339. Grease
340. Drive
341. The Seventh Seal
342. 300
343. Titanic
344. Jules & Jim
345. Animal Kingdom
346. Spirited Away
347. The Passenger
348. The Gold Rush
349. Monsters Inc.
350. The Birds
351. Fatal Attraction
352. Leave Her To Heaven
353. All About Eve
354. Au Hasard Balthasar
355. Arthur
356. Planet Of The Apes
357. Zulu
358. Unfaithfully Yours
359. Bugsy Malone
360. Un Chien Andalou
361. Napoleon
362. Mad Max
363. The Long Goodbye
364. Russian Ark
365. The Lady Eve
366. Rabbit-Proof Fence
367. Blow Out
368. Bridesmaids
369. Clerks
370. The Elephant Man
371. Good Morning Vietnam
372. Natural Born Killers
373. The Bourne Identity
374. Pradator
375. Cabaret
376. Airplane!
377. The Breakfast Club
378. Rocky
379. Casino
380. Army Of Darkness
381. Inglourious Basterds
382. Shine
383. Four Weddings & A Funeral
384. The Social Network
385. Mean Streats
386. The Goonies
387. Ratatouille
388. Children Of Men
389. Monty Python & The Holy Grail
390. Cache
391. Hugo
392. Romper Stomper
393. Donnie Darko
394. The Shop Around The Corner
395. The Great Silence
396. Ace In The Hole
397. Rain Man
398. The English Patient
399. Mulholland Drive
400. Paris, Texas
401. The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford
402. Night Of The Living Dead
403. Zero Dark Thirty
404. Greed
405. The Incredibles
406. Little Miss Sunshine
407. Do The Right Thing
408. RoboCop
409. Dirty Dancing
410. The Jungle Book
411. Iron Man
412. Men In Black
413. A Hard Day's Night
414. Spider-Man II
415. Heathers
416. Finding Nemo
417 The Adventures Of Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert
418. The Double Life Of Veronique
419. Bad Taste
420. Dawn Of The Dead
421. Days Of Heaven
422. Jerry Maguirre
423. Lethal Weapon
424. A Man Escaped
425. To Have & Have Not
426. Kill Bill II
427. Spring In A Small Town
428. The Enigma Of Kaspar Hauser
429. Danger: Diabolik
430. Big Trouble In Little China
431. Electra Glida In Blue
432. X-Men II
433. Good Will Hunting
434. The Cat Concerto
435. American Psycho
436. Beauty & The Beast
437. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
437. Spider-Man
438. The Lost Boys
439. Grosse Pointe Blank
440. Akira
441. Being John Malkovich
442. Wake In Fright
443. Dog Day Afternoon
444. Hairspray
445. Dumb & Dumber
446. High Fidelity
447. The Master
448. Ponyo
449. Crocodile Dundee
450. Speed
451. Unbreakable
452. The Raid: Redemption
453. Top Gun
454. 28 Days Later
455. Full Metal Jacket
456. Lantana
457. Little Shop Of Horrors
458. Batman
459. Ikiru
460. Crash
461. Incendies
462. Halloween
463. The Hurt Locker
464. Juno
465. Seven Brides For Seven Brothers
466. 12 Monkeys
467. Snatch
468. The Deer Hunter
469. The Crow
470. Glengarry Glen Ross
471. The Hunt
472. Harry Potter & The Prisoner Of Azkaban
473. Le Doulos
474. Enter The Dragon
475. The Impossibe
476. Santa Sangre
477. Rebel Without A Cause
478. Flesh
479. Stoker
480. The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty
481. Scream
482. True Grit
483. Before Midnight
484. The Wicker Man
485. Breakfast At Tiffany's
486. Superbad
487. Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes
488. Breaker Morant
489. Another Year
490. Ben-Hur: A Tale Of The Christ
491. Amores Perros
492. End Of Watch
493. In The Company Of Men
494. Sideways
495. Jailhouse Rock
496. Kick-Ass
497. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
498. Antichrist
499. Saw
500. Ocean's 11


The following films have been cut from the 2008 list: Zelig, Princess Mononoke, The Magnificent Ambersons, The Death Of Mr Lazarescu, High & Low, The Tree Of Wooden Clogs, Almost Famous, United 93, The Addiction, Moulin Rouge!, Mother & Son, Safe, The Verdict, The Virgin Suicides, Ghost World, Pee-Wee's Big Adventure, Layer Cake, Interview With The Vampire, Together, Transformers, Sense & Sensibility, Lone Star, The Lives Of Others, Star Wars III, The Last Waltz, Sunshine, The Return, Pirates Of The Caribbean: The Curse Of The Black Pearl, Hot Fuzz, Zodiac, Serenity, Election, Two Days In Paris, Garden State, Cloverfield, Killer Of Sheep, Batman Returns, Lords Of Dogtown, V For Vendetta, Wonder Boys, Enduring Love, Spider-Man, Atonement, Ten, A History Of Violence, Star Wars I, The Bourne Supremacy, Dead Man's Shoes, Fear & Loathing In Las Vegas, Into The Wild, Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, The Son's Room, Topsy-Turvy, The Big Red One, Brick, Superman Returns, Back To The Future II, Sweeney Todd, The Fountain, King Kong, and Indiana Jones & The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull.

The additions to the list fall into two main categories: films released after the original list was compiled (i.e. since 2008), and acclaimed Australian films (as this is Empire's Australian edition). There are also two classics - The Birds and Little Shop Of Horrors - that were excluded from the original list but have been included in the revised version.

The additional films released since the 2008 list are: Amour, Inception, Avatar, The Dark Knight Rises, Django Unchained, Lincoln, The Artist, Black Swan, Inglourious Basterds, Ponyo, The Impossible, True Grit, Kick-Ass, Antichrist, Toy Story III, District 9, The Avengers, Iron Man III, The King's Speech, Life Of Pi, Skyfall, The Intouchables, Argo, Star Trek, The Hangover, Let The Right One In, Beasts Of The Southern Wild, Looper, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Wrestler, Drive, Animal Kingdom, Bridesmaids, The Social Network, Zero Dark Thirty, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Master, The Raid: Redemption, Incendies, The Hurt Locker, The Hunt, Stoker, Before Midnight, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, Another Year, and End Of Watch.

The added Australian films are: The Castle; The Snowton Murders; Chopper; Gallipoli; Mad Max; Rabbit-Proof Fence; Shine; Romper Stomper; The Adventures Of Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert; Wake In Fright; Crocodile Dundee; Lantana; and Breaker Morant.

Aside from the sixty-one substitutions, the 2013 list is otherwise very similar to the 2008 list. There are minor changes to the positions of some films, and the rankings of three titles have altered significantly: Pan's Labyrinth drops from #132 to #332, Blow Out drops from to #139 to #367, and Wall-E rises from #373 to #276.

Empire Australia also published a 100 Greatest Movies Of All Time list in 2007, and a previous one in 2002. Both polls were won by Star Wars IV, which is #22 on the 2013 list.

[Some films in the list share the same titles as other films or remakes. Note that Some Like It Hot is the Billy Wilder classic, Carrie is the Brian de Palma horror, Crash is the Paul Haggis drama, Beauty & The Beast is the Walt Disney version, The Maltese Falcon is the John Huston version, Casino Royale is the Martin Campbell version, Scarface is the Brian de Palma version, Ben-Hur is the William Wyler version, Romeo & Juliet is the Baz Luhrmann version, Titanic is the James Cameron version, The Avengers is the Joss Whedon version, and True Grit is the Joel and Ethan Coen version.]

In It Together

In It Together
In It Together: The Inside Story Of The Coalition Government is Matthew d'Ancona's account of the coalition in the UK between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats. D'Ancona's book is clearly being positioned as a successor to Andrew Rawnsley's Servants Of The People: The Inside Story Of New Labour. They have similar cover designs (political cartoons) and subtitles (The Inside Story Of...), and d'Ancona's level of access is similar to Rawnsley's was during the Labour government.

In It Together covers only three years of the government's term of office: David Cameron became Prime Minister in 2010, and his 'coalition agreement' includes a pledge to serve a fixed five-year term. (Servants Of The People similarly covered only the first three years of Tony Blair's premiership; Rawnsley wrote a sequel, The End Of The Party, in 2010.) The coalition still has almost two years left to run, though the (inside) story of its formation and first few years is already substantial enough.

D'Ancona and Rawnsley are both extremely well-connected, though Rawnsley's book benefitted from the extraordinary tensions at the heart of the Labour party in the 1990s. Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Peter Mandelson, and Alastair Campbell were the dramatis personae of a tragic drama, with Brown as Macbeth. Unfortunately for d'Ancona, the coalition apparently doesn't have the same level of bitter rivalry, thwarted ambition, and back-stabbing as the TB-GB era. George Osbourne, who was presumably one of d'Ancona's major sources, is evidently no Gordon Brown. While that makes for a much more co-operative government, it's less compelling in prose.