Errol Webber – thanks for being our Artist-in-Residence!

Now that his visit has come and gone, I just want to give a big thank you to Errol for being our Fall 2012 Film/Video Artist-in-Residence. The students enjoyed your visit, and you taught them so much.

Above, Errol signs one of the posters we made for his 9/13 screening of Ithemba, while yours truly grins like an idiot . . . Click on that photo to be taken to my flickr site, where you’ll find all of the photos from the three days of Errol’s residency.

Errol Webber’s workshops rocked today

You can see more photos of Errol Webber ( at work today at Stevenson by clicking on the photo, which will take you to my flickr site. You can see his workshop/screening schedule here:

Films I have seen in 2012, so far . . .

It’s that time of year again, folks! The Academy Award™ nominations are just around the . . . wait, not quite.

But, still, I’ve seen a fair amount of movies so far, and graded each of them, below. As an educator, I stick to the A-F scale, which – in spite of modern grade inflation – is something that we can all relate to. Many of the films are not new films from 2012, but films that I had just never gotten around to seeing before. And there are a few films on the list from the 2012 Maryland Film Festival, including some of the better short films I saw (I left out the shorts that made no impression at all). Here goes:

January 1 – September 8, 2012:

  • Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (Timur Bekmambetov): F
  • Amazing Spider-Man, The (Marc Webb): A-
  • Avengers, The (Josh Whedon): B/B-
  • Banlieue 13 (Pierre Morel): B+ [great “Parkour”]
  • Battle Royale (Kinji Fukasaku): F
  • Beasts of the Southern Wild (Benh Zeitlin): B+
  • Bourne Legacy, The (Tony Gilroy): B/B-
  • Brave (PIXAR): B
  • Bridesmaids (Paul Feig): F – I tried to finish this, but only made it through 45 minutes.  Hated it.
  • Contagion (Steven Soderbergh): B/B-
  • Cowboys & Aliens (Jon Favreau): C+
  • Crazy, Stupid, Love (Glenn Ficarra, John Requa): B-
  • Dangerous Method, A (David Cronenberg): D
  • Dark Knight Rises, The (Christopher Nolan): B
  • Dark Horse (Todd Solondz): B/B+ [MD FILM FEST]
  • dernier combat, Le (Luc Besson): B+
  • Drive (Nicolas Winding Refn): B/B-
  • 88:88 (Joey Ciccoline): B+/A- (Short) [MD FILM FEST]
  • Fallen (Gregory Hoblit): D+
  • 50/50 (Jonathan Levine): B/B-
  • Footnote (Joseph Cedar): A
  • Freaky Friday (Gary Nelson – 1976 original): B
  • Freaky Friday (Mark Waters – 2003 remake): B/B+
  • French Lieutenant’s Woman, The (Karel Reisz): B
  • From Morning Till Midnight (Karlheinz Martin): C-/C [MD FILM FEST]
  • gamin au vélo, Le (Jean-Pierre et Luc Dardenne): B
  • Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The (David Fincher): B
  • Grey Gardens (Michael Sucsy – 2009 HBO version): B+/A-
  • Guard, The (John Michael McDonagh): B/B+
  • High Maintenance (Shawn Wines): B+/A- (Short) [MD FILM FEST]
  • Higher Ground (Vera Farmiga): B
  • Horrible Bosses (Seth Gordon): C+/B-
  • Hunger Games, The (Gary Ross): D
  • Ides of March, The (George Clooney): B
  • J. Edgar (Clint Eastwood): B
  • Jackie Brown (Quentin Tarantino): B
  • John Carter (Andrew Stanton); B+
  • Killing, The: Season 1 (AMC – Veena Sud): from A to C (the structure breaks down over the course of the season, though the atmosphere rocks, throughout)
  • Lawless (John Hillcoat): C/C+
  • Lincoln Lawyer, The (Brad Furman): B+
  • Lockout (James Mather & Stephen St. Leger): C
  • Lorenzo’s Oil (George Miller): B-
  • Love Free or Die (Macky Alston): B+ [MD FILM FEST]
  • Lucky Luke (James Huth): D
  • LUV (Sheldon Candis): B-/C+ [MD FILM FEST – good for a first feature, though, with strong performances – problems are all in the script]
  • Magic Mike (Steven Soderbergh): A-
  • Margin Call (J.C. Chandor): B+
  • Me and Orson Welles (Richard Linklater): A-
  • Men in Black III (Barry Sonnenfeld): B/B+
  • Midnight in Paris (Woody Allen): B
  • Mirror, Mirror (Tarsem Singh): C
  • Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (Brad Bird): B+
  • Moneyball (Bennett Miller): A-
  • Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson): C+
  • Muppets, The (James Bobin): A-
  • My Week with Marilyn (Simon Curtis): B-/C+ [Michelle Williams is surprisingly very good as Marilyn, however – Kenneth Branagh is terrible as Olivier]
  • No Subtitles Necessary (James Chressantis): B- [good material; terrible direction]
  • Now, Voyager (Irving Rapper): B/B+
  • OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies (Michel Hazanavicius): B
  • OSS 117: Lost in Rio (Michel Hazanavicius): B
  • Outbreak (Wolfgang Petersen): B
  • petits mouchoirs, Les (Guillaume Canet): C/C+ [comedy is delightful, the dramatic portions are nauseating]
  • Pom Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (Morgan Spurlock): A-
  • Prometheus (Ridley Scott): B-
  • Puss in Boots (Chris Miller): B-
  • Rise of the Planet of the Apes (Rupert Wyatt): B+
  • Rock of Ages (Adam Shankman): C+
  • Rolling on the Floor Laughing (Russell Harbaugh): B+/A- (Short) [MD FILM FEST]
  • Savages (Oliver Stone): B
  • Skin I Live in, The (Pedro Almodóvar): B
  • Snow White and the Huntsman (Rupert Sanders): B-
  • Star Trek: Nemesis (Stuart Baird): B-
  • Taken (Pierre Morel): C/C-
  • Ted (Seth MacFarlane): F
  • Thing, The (Matthijs van Heijningen, Jr. – this is the 2011 “prequel”): C/C-
  • This Is Not a Film (Mojtaba Mirtahmasb/Jafar Panahi): B [MD FILM FEST]
  • Thumbsucker (Mike Mills): B/B+
  • Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (Tomas Alfredson): B/B-
  • To Rome with Love (Woody Allen): B/B-
  • Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds (Tyler Perry): C
  • Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection (Tyler Perry): D
  • Under African Skies (Joe Berlinger): B+ [MD FILM FEST]
  • War Horse (Steven Spielberg): B/B+
  • Water for Elephants (Francis Lawrence): B-
  • Whistleblower, The (Larysa Kondracki): B/B-
  • X-Men Origins: Wolverine (Gavin Hood): D+/C-
  • Young Adult (Jason Reitman): B/B+

What have YOU watched this year so far, and which of my ratings do you dis/agree with?

Errol Webber, Baltimore cinematographer, will appear at Stevenson on Sep. 13 @ 7pm

We have a new look to our website. Check it out!

And while you’re there, note our first big event of the year, which is a visit from local cinematographer Errol Webber.

Here is that same info:

Sep. 12-14, 2012: Cinematographer Errol Webber will be the Fall 2012 Film/Video Artist-in-Residence. See the flier, above. For a trailer of Ithemba, the film that we will screen on Thursday, Sep. 13, click here. For directions to the campus, click here.