The Jaws Log

With detailed look at the minutiae of film production and captivating trivia strewn all throughout the book, The Jaws Log is a delightful read, whether you’re interested in the film-making process or not. Murphy’s law states the following: “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.” I don’t know where that adage originated, but after reading The Jaws Log, I’m 100% sure that’s how those working on the production of the 1975 blockbuster felt.

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Frozen (2013)

SPOILERS ABOUND! The traditional Disney musical is a genre that has been given the shaft in recent years. With Pixar becoming the foremost animation house in Hollywood, we’ve got films that are thematically deep and resonate in ways the older Disney musicals didn’t. And while there’s no denying the absolute cinematic quality of Pixar’s films, there’s a simple endearing quality to the likes of Aladdin and The Lion King that I have grown to miss.

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American Hustle (2013)

(SPOILERS ABOUND!) In the midst of an Oscar season filled with the usual dramatic fare comes David O’Russell’s American Hustle to remind me why I began watching films in the first place: to be utterly entertained. Not that I don’t mind or enjoy the more serious films we get in December and January, it just seems to me that sometimes we lose sight of the fact that having fun and being entertained are also perfectly good reasons to visit movie theaters.

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Man Of Steel (2013)

SPOILERS GALORE! I’ve now seen this summer’s most anticipated film twice, and the experience was surprisingly different on each viewing. The first time around the film fell down in the weight of my expectations. How couldn’t it? With a story by Christopher Nolan, screenplay by Nolan and David Goyer, and directed by Zack Snyder (of 300 fame), Man of Steel was the most anticipated worldwide film since last year’s The Dark Knight Rises.

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My Love Affair with Mass Effect

What makes the Mass Effect trilogy one of the greatest game series of all time? That question will understandably generate a myriad of responses from the series’ long-time fans. Some will highlight the breathtaking science-fiction world the creators gave us, vaguely reminiscent of Star Wars and Star Trek, yet completely new all the same. Some will point to the abundant gameplay options available to the player; whether playing as a Soldier, Engineer or Biotic, there was always something new to be found in each playthrough.

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Thank You and Farewell, Roger Ebert!

Roger Ebert passed away yesterday night, finally succumbing to his long, arduous struggle with cancer. I woke up to the news today morning and haven’t been able to think clearly, if at all, for the better part of the day. How can I even begin quantify the impact Roger Ebert has had on me, as well as scores of other filmbuffs? For me personally, he was the baptist. He was the one who inducted me into the world of cinephilia by a trial-by-fire.

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Haridas (2013)

There’s a beautiful moment in the second half of Haridas where the child lets his father know exactly what it is that excites him. It is, at once, the first time the father stoops down to truly understand what drives his autistic son; the scene where the audience understands the significance of a totem the child has carried thus far; and the instant where the film finally kicks into gear.

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Zero Dark Thirty (2012)

As I exited the theater after watching Kathryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty, I had a sinking feeling that had nothing to do with the film’s quality and everything to do with the real-life events it recounted. I thought to myself, “The United States not only killed the most wanted man in history, they also made a fucking brilliant film about it. Respect! What has my country done lately? Nothing.” This realization was quite depressing because of the truth in it.

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Lincoln (2012)

When Lincoln was initially announced, Liam Neeson was signed up to take on the challenge of bringing to life the 16th President of the United States. As someone who holds a great deal of admiration for Neeson, I was intrigued, not the least because it would’ve been one of his more showy roles in a long time. Of course, we all know what happened, Neeson, having lost his wife by the time the film went to floors, opted out of the project saying he was a little too old for the part, and Daniel Day-Lewis was roped in and what was already a pretty high-profile production was lifted significantly higher.

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Random Thoughts on Conversations with Mani Ratnam

Back in my pre-teen days, I remember catching glimpses of Mouna Ragam, Agni Natchathiram, Roja, and Bombay on TV. This was a time when I didn’t place much importance on wordly things, let alone cinema, kind of like those kids in Anjali. Yet I could sense that there was something in these films, something that made me watch them again and again without making any sense of it all. Later when I entered the latter part of my teens, but still before I was the ardent filmbuff that I consider myself to be now, I saw a couple of movies that knocked the stuffing out of me.

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