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Mud

What Are the Best Movies of the Decade So Far?

What Are the Best Movies of the Decade So Far?

It’s hard to imagine we’re five years removed from the myriad “Best Movies of the Decade” posts of 2009. That was fun, and each intervening year since has produced more than enough titles worthy of appearing on such lists. Of course, most of those titles won’t eventually make it when we get to the end […]

The 5 Best Leading Male Performances of 2013

The 5 Best Leading Male Performances of 2013

I have way too many fragments of a Best Performances of 2013 list to not write something up. The idea to break apart the list by, for lack of a better term, Oscar category was born out of the desire to highlight some stellar supporting work, which sometimes gets ignored when talking about the very […]

2014 Oscar Nominations Wish List

2014 Oscar Nominations Wish List

I say this every year, but it deserves repeating: quality has got nothing to do with the Oscars. Sure, the Academy is a large voting body, but each member has his or her own biases—just like film critics do—and for every member who thinks The Wolf of Wall Street is the best movie of 2013 […]

The Best Movies of 2013

The Best Movies of 2013

Outstanding. That’s the simplest but most appropriate way to sum up the year in movies that was 2013. Outstanding. A more interesting way would be to discuss the year in movie themes. The American dream, in one way or another, was a noticeable theme in seven of my top ten movies movies this year. It […]

2014 Oscars: Don’t Forget About Us

2014 Oscars: Don’t Forget About Us

Films released in the first two thirds of a given year are automatically at a disadvantage when it comes to possible Oscar nominations. There are exceptions, of course—Beasts of the Southern Wild, Midnight in Paris, Winter’s Bone, for example—but the nature of campaigning rewards those films that don’t have to remain in voters’ minds very […]

2014 Oscar Predictions: Resetting the Board

2014 Oscar Predictions: Resetting the Board

Click on over to my 2014 Oscar Predictions page to see everything I’m forecasting in the major categories. And check out my 2014 Oscar Predictions: Technical Categories page for projections in Best Cinematography, Best Visual Effects, and more. I’d planned to dive a little deeper into Best Documentary Feature today, but I’ve got quite a […]

2014 Oscar Predictions: Screenplays Original and Adapted

2014 Oscar Predictions: Screenplays Original and Adapted

Click on over to my 2014 Oscar Predictions page to see everything I’m forecasting in the major categories. I’ve focused my 2014 Oscar predictions, until now, on Best Picture, Best Director, and the four acting categories. Today, I begin to unravel some of the secondary categories, starting with 2014 Best Adapted Screenplay and 2014 Best […]

The Best Movies of 2013 So Far

The Best Movies of 2013 So Far

It’s been an OK movie year so far. I’ve given a number of titles 3.5 stars; just one movie earned 4 stars. Yet, when I look over this list, I can’t help but think most of these films miss out on my end-of-year top ten list. I’m just not over-the-moon about many movies this year […]

What Else I’m Watching: August 2013

What Else I’m Watching: August 2013

A former monthly column at John Likes Movies comes back. Why? Because you can’t review them all. Sadly, life gets in the way of writing about everything I see, so this space is as much for keeping track of what I’m watching as it is for you to share your thoughts on what are, with […]

Mud Review

Mud Review

RATING: (4 STARS) Nobody makes movies like Jeff Nichols, few people make movies as well as Jeff Nichols, and Jeff Nichols has never made a movie as rich and satisfying as Mud. The film is ultimately about love in all of its messy incarnations, but told from a child’s perspective, it takes the shape of […]

Jeff Nichols Movies

Jeff Nichols Movies

Jeff Nichols movies are almost synonymous with the American South, and while they’re few in number, Jeff Nichols movies have made an indelible mark on the independent film world over the past half-decade or so. At just 34 years of age, Jeff Nichols has accomplished a ton. He’s opened films at Sundance, Viennale, and Cannes […]

Sundance 2013: Ten Titles to Watch

Sundance 2013: Ten Titles to Watch

Click here to read part two of my Sundance 2013 wrap-up. In 2012, the Sundance Film Festival experienced a renaissance of sorts. Beasts of the Southern Wild rode a wave of love from Sundance all the way to Oscar nominations in Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actress. The Sessions earned Helen Hunt a nomination […]