Posted: 01/27/2005

 

Film 2004 as Seen by Wayne Case

by Wayne Case




Film Monthly Home
Archives
Wayne Case
Interviews
Steve Anderson
The Rant
Short Takes (Archived)
Small Screen Monthly
Behind the Scenes
New on DVD
The Indies
Horror
Film Noir
Coming Soon
Now Playing
Television
Books on Film
What's Hot at the Movies This Week
Interviews TV

Note: This recap is based on my personal reaction to the 147 films that I saw in full during 2004.

Best Films
(Alphabetically)
The Aviator

Kinsey

Million Dollar Baby

The Notebook

Sideways

-and-

Closer

Collateral

The Door In The Floor

Friday Night Lights

Spider-Man 2

Runners-Up (Alphabetically)
The Bourne Supremacy

Cellular

Hotel Rwanda

The Manchurian Candidate

Ray

Saved!

Taking Lives

Troy

Honorable Mentions (Alphabetically)
Before Sunset

Hidalgo

Latter Days

Man On Fire

Mean Girls

13 Going On 30

Wimbledon

The Woodsman

Best Foreign Language Films
(In order of preference)
Bad Education
The Motorcycle Diaries
The Sea Inside

Best Animated Film
The Incredibles
Best Documentary Film
Fahrenheit 9/11
Guilty Pleasures (Alphabetically)
Connie and Carla
Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights
Meet The Fockers
Paparazzi
Starsky & Hutch
Win A Date with Tad Hamilton
Worst Films:The Deadly Dozen (Alphabetically)
Against The Ropes
Anchorman
The Big Bounce
Catwoman
Christmas With the Kranks
Dodgeball
The Forgotten
The Grudge
The Perfect Score
Secret Window
Seed Of Chucky
Skipping Christmas
Twisted
Ugly, Unsuccessful, Unnecessary, and/or Unsavory
(Alphabetically)
The Clearing
Enduring Love
The Girl Next Door
Godsend
The Machinist
Spanglish
The Village
Wicker Park
Young Adam
But Not For Me (Alphabetically)
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Finding Neverland

Best Actor (Alphabetically)
Javier Bardem, The Sea Inside
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Aviator
Jamie Foxx, Ray
Paul Giamatti, Sideways
Liam Neeson, Kinsey
Best Actress (Alphabetically)
Hilary Swank, Million Dollar Baby
Imelda Staunton, Vera Drake
Kim Basinger, The Door in the Floor
Julia Roberts, Closer
Annette Bening, Being Julia
Best Actor Runners Up
(Alphabetically)
Kevin Bacon, The Woodsman

Gael Garcia Bernal, Bad Education

Gael Garcia Bernal, The Motorcycle Diaries

Jeff Bridges, The Door in the Floor

Don Cheadle, Hotel Rwanda

Tom Cruise, Collateral

Clint Eastwood, Million Dollar Baby

Jude Law, Closer

Billy Bob Thornton, Friday Night Lights

Best Actor—Considered & Rejected

Johnny Depp, Finding Neverland

Best Actor Honorable Mention
(Alphabetically)

Billy Crudrup, Stage Beauty

Matt Damon, The Bourne Supremacy

Ryan Gosling, The Notebook

Kevin Kline, De-Lovely

Tobey Maguire, Spider-Man 2

Denzel Washington, The Manchurian Candidate

Denzel Washington, Man on Fire

Best Actress Runners Up (Alphabetically)
Kirsten Dunst, Spider-Man 2

Ashley Judd, De-Lovely

Laura Linney, P.S.

Rachel McAdams, The Notebook

Kyra Sedgwick, The Woodsman

Uma Thurman, Kill Bill: Vol. 2

Best Actress—Considered & Rejected
(Alphabetically)

Nicole Kidman, Birth

Scarlett Johansson, A Love Song For Bobby Long

Catalina Sandino Moreno, Maria Full of Grace

Audrey Tautou, A Very Long Engagement

Kate Winslet, Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind

Kate Winslet, Finding Neverland

Best Supporting Actor (Alphabetical)
Thomas Haden Church, Sideways
James Garner, The Notebook
Tim McGraw, Friday Night Lights
Clive Owen, Closer
Peter Sarsgaard, Kinsey
Best Supporting Actor Runners Up (Alphabetically)
Jon Foster, The Door in the Floor
Jamie Foxx, Collateral
James Franco, Spider-Man 2
Morgan Freeman, Million Dollar Baby
Topher Grace, P.S.
Dustin Hoffman, Meet The Fockers
James Marsden, The Notebook
Peter O’Toole, Troy
Liev Schreiber, The Manchurian Candidate

Best Supporting Actress (Alphabetically)
Cate Blanchett, The Aviator
Laura Linney, Kinsey
Virginia Madsen, Sideways
Natalie Portman, Closer
Meryl Streep, The Manchurian Candidate
Best Supporting Actress Runners Up (Alphabetically)

Joan Allen, The Bourne Supremacy

Toni Collette, The Last Shot

Sandra Oh, Sideways

Sophie Okonedo, Hotel Rwanda

Gena Rowlands, The Notebook

Barbra Streisand, Meet The Fockers

Best Original Script
(Alphabetically)

The Aviator

Bad Education

Kinsey

Best Adapted Script

(Alphabetically)

Before Sunset

Closer

Mean Girls

Million Dollar Baby

The Notebook

Sideways

Best Original Song (Alphabetical)

Believe, The Polar Express

Creasy Dies, Man On Fire

Learn To Be Lonely, The Phantom of the Opera

Million Voices, Hotel Rwanda

Old Habits Die Hard, Alfie

Remember, Troy

Shine Your Light, Ladder 49

Best Original Musical Scoring (Alpha)
The Aviator, Howard Shore

The Bourne Supremacy, John Powell

Man On Fire, Harry Gregson-Williams & others

Million Dollar Baby, Clint Eastwood

The Notebook, Aaron Zigman

Sideways, Rolfe Kent

Best Cinematography
(Alphabetically)
The Aviator, Robert Richardson

Bad Education, Jose Luis Alcaine

Closer, Stephen Goldblatt

Collateral, Dion Bebee & Paul Cameron

Friday Night Lights, Tobias A. Schliessler

Man On Fire, Paul Cameron & Cesar Cameron

The Motorcycle Diaries, Eric Gautier

The Notebook, Robert Fraisse

Taking Lives, Amir M. Mokri

Troy, Roger Pratt

Special Awards
The Victor Mature Worst Performance by an Actor Award: No award this year—BUT see “What About Bob” recipients below.

The Michelle Phillips/Cornelia Sharpe/Angel Thompkins Worst Performance by an Actress Award: Halle Berry in CATWOMAN

The Heaven’s Gate Budget Award: ALEXANDER

The Otto Preminger “Light Touch” Award: VAN HELSING

The Sam Peckinpah “Wretched Excess” Award: Mel Gibson’s THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST (The first faith-based splatter film!)

The Sidney Lumet Miscasting Award: Stuart Townsend in HEAD IN THE CLOUDS

A Star Is Born Break-Thru Award: Female -

Rachel McAdams in MEAN GIRLS & THE NOTEBOOK
Male—Topher Grace in P.S. & IN THE COMPANY OF MEN
The Surgeon General’s Warning Award (2-way tie):

A HOME AT THE END OF THE WORLD
A LOVE SONG FOR BOBBY LONG.
Note: In A LOVE SONG FOR BOBBY LONG, Scarlett Johansson joins her co-star, John Travolta as a front line role model and advocate for tobacco use. Just like Travolta, she manages to smoke on screen in most of her numerous projects.

The John Hartl Stop-Them-Before-They-Direct-Again Award: Rawson Marshall Thurber for DODGEBALL

The Calling-Sydney-Guilaroff-for-Help-Hair-Style Award:

Female:

Jamie Lee Curtis in CHRISTMAS WITH THE KRANKS
Catherine O’Hara in SURVIVING CHRISTMAS
Meg Ryan in AGAINST THE ROPES
Male:

Colin Farrell for ALEXANDER & A HOME AT THE END OF THE WORLD
The What About Bob Most Annoying Award: Tim Allen in CHRISTMAS WITH THE KRANKS

Will Ferrell in ANCHORMAN
Ben Stiller in DODGEBALL
The Bill Lee Worst Musical Scoring Award:

Christopher Young for THE GRUDGE
David Holmes for OCEANS 12
Comments:

(1) Another Bob Clark directorial project went into United States theatrical release in 2004. Named SUPERBABIES: BABY GENIUSES 2, it received a 1.6 grade (out of a possible 10) from the Internet Movie Data Base website membership. This is lowest rating they have ever given any film in English and is the second lowest rating ever given to a film in any language. For perspective, the wretched John Travolta 2000 clunker, BATTLEFIELD EARTH, received a 2.4. As far as I can determine, no future projects have been announced by or for director Clark. Since I disparage him annually, my sense of fair play dictates that I confess here that I love his 1982 high school boy fantasy/comedy, PORKY’S.

(2) I am grateful that Ed Zwick has not directed a film since THE LAST SAMURAI which reached US screens in 2003. Another project has been announced for him but release isn’t even threatened before 2006. I did like his little seen LEAVING NORMAL (1992), but squirmed/cringed throughout both GLORY (1989) & COURAGE UNDER FIRE (1996). Further, while many will disagree, I found LEGENDS OF THE FALL (1994) over-blown, over-produced, over-acted and interminable.

(3) Peter Hyams may well be a nice man. In fact, a former and respected co-worker of mine told me that he enjoys playing golf with him. Personally, I wish Mr. Hyams would devote himself to golf and give up directing films. From his oeuvre, consider the following as evidence as to why: BUSTING (1974), PEEPER (1975), 2010 (1984), THE RELIC (1997) and THE MUSKETEER (2001) which is his most recent as of January 2005. A SOUND OF THUNDER was scheduled for March 11, 2005 openings but that date has been pulled. I can wait…indefinitely.

(4) I love Miss Piggy. I love Yoda. Frank Oz voices them, along with many other favorites. And then there’s his other career as a feature film director. While LITTLE SHOP OF HORORS (1986) & BOWFINGER (1999) are excellent, he’s also responsible for the lame/limp IN & OUT (1997), the labored/listless HOUSESITTER (1992), the deeply flawed/wildly uneven STEPFORD WIVES (2004) and the most annoying film I’ve ever endured, WHAT ABOUT BOB? (1991). If rumors of major problems on the set of THE STEPFORD WIVES are true, maybe he won’t even want to direct again. At present, I find no future directing assignments announced for him.

The Ellen Terry Awards
Note: Awarded to those providing extra and or unexpected pleasure.
Eric Bana, Troy

Justin Bartha, National Treasure

Jamie Bell, Undertow

Paul Bettany, Wimbledon

Lucas Black, Friday Night Lights

Marc Blucas, First Daughter

Jon Collin, In Good Company

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Wimbledon

Josh Duhamel, Win A Date With Tad Hamilton

Will Ferrell, Starsky & Hutch

Vincent Gallo, The Brown Bunny

Cole Hauser, Paparazzi

Emile Hirsch, The Girl Next Door

Gabriel Macht, A Love Song For Bobby Long

Olivier Martinez, Taking Lives

Alessandro Nivola, The Clearing

Michael Pitt, The Dreamers

Owen Wilson, Starsky & Hutch and The Big Bounce

Patrick Wilson, The Phantom of the Opera

Joan Allen, The Notebook

Eva Amurri, Saved!

Kate Bosworth, Win A Date With Tad Hamilton

Elisha Cuthbert, The Girl Next Door

Minnie Driver, The Phantom of the Opera

Edna, The Incredibles

Dakota Fanning, Man On Fire

Jennifer Garner, 13 Going On 30

Katie Holmes, First Daughter

Angelina Jolie, Taking Lives

Diane Kruger, National Treasure

Rachel McAdams, Mean Girls

Radha Mitchell, Man On Fire

Mandy Moore, Saved!

Julia Roberts, Oceans 12

Emmy Rossum, The Phantom Of The Opera

Jada Pinkett Smith, Collateral

ELLEN TERRY HALL OF FAME: Ben Affleck (10) & Luke Wilson (11)

Most Anticipated Films of 2005
Of those I’m aware of, these are the 2005 releases I anticipate the most, in alphabetical order:

ALL THE KING’S MEN
ASK THE DUST
BATMAN BEGINS
BEWITCHED
BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN
CINDERELLA MAN
DARK WATER
FANTASTIC FOUR
GLORY ROAD
IN HER SHOES
JARHEAD
MONSTER-IN-LAW
MR.AND MRS.SMITH
STAR WARS: EPISODE III
SWIMMING UPSTREAM
AN UNFINISHED LIFE
THE UPSIDE OF ANGER
WAR OF THE WORLDS

Wayne Case is an entertainment industry executive in Hollywood.



Got a problem? E-mail us at filmmonthly@gmail.com