Longform

The Best Movies of 2016 (According to Matt Singer)

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by Matt Singer 2 hours ago
A24/Summit/A24
What a difference six months makes. Back in the summer, the world of film was all gloom and doom. Television was great; the movies were terrible. One respected critic even speculated that someday the world would look back at 2016 as “the year that movies died.”

Lucasfilm Will Hire Female ‘Star Wars’ Director ‘When the Time Is Right,’ But We’re Tired of Waiting

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by Britt Hayes November 28, 2016 @ 1:36 PM
Lucasfilm
Colin Trevorrow, Jordan Vogt-Roberts and Josh Trank are just a few of the names among those that have transitioned from acclaimed first-time indie filmmakers to first-time blockbuster directors. The list of filmmakers who have made that giant leap includes very few women, and it’s something that Disney and subsidiaries Lucasfilm and Marvel Studios have been working to address. Change comes slowly, and it’s been even slower for Star Wars, which has yet to hire a woman to direct any of their upcoming films. While it’s definitely a priority for Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy, we might have to wait a bit longer for it to happen.

‘Westworld’ Season 1, Episode 9 Recap: A Little Trauma Can Be Illuminating

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by Matt Singer November 27, 2016 @ 10:19 PM
HBO
Or a little trauma can be deceptive. Tonight’s episode of Westworld, “The Well-Tempered Clavier,” named after a famous composition by Johann Sebastian Bach, showed both. For some characters, trauma opens their eyes to the reality that they’ve deliberately avoided. For others, trauma blocks them from discovering a truth.

The 25 Greatest Disney Songs Ever

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by Josh Spiegel November 23, 2016 @ 9:27 AM
Disney
Over nearly 80 years, the 56 feature films from Walt Disney Animation Studios have become beloved and instantly recognizable their iconic fairy tales, memorable comic-relief sidekicks, terrifying villains, and some of the greatest songs in cinema history. This week heralds the release of Disney’s latest animated film, Moana, which boasts songs co-written by Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda. So there’s no better time to compile a list of the 25 best songs in animated Disney history — with a couple of important pre-list caveats. First, to avoid overloading the list with songs from only a few films, each movie here could only be represented by a maximum of two songs. Second, this list has films in the official Disney animation canon only, so nothing from Pixar or even The Nightmare Before Christmas. With that in mind, here’s the list!

The Legacyquel Legacy: Where Hollywood’s Latest Sequel Innovation Went Wrong

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by Matt Singer November 22, 2016 @ 10:06 AM
Lucasfilm
The big emotional climax of Star Wars: The Force Awakens isn’t a lightsaber battle or a dogfight in space or even two characters talking. The last scene of 2015’s Star Wars saga revival follows Rey, a young woman from a desert planet, as she finally locates Luke Skywalker, the reclusive former hero of the galactic Rebellion. Without saying a word, Rey approaches Luke, reaches into her bag, and offers the Jedi master his old lightsaber.

The 25 Blu-rays Every Movie Lover Must Own

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by Noel Murray November 22, 2016 @ 8:33 AM
Given how much space physical media takes up, it’s hard for movie buffs to say no to the great promise of “cloud storage,” and the idea that we could summon anything we want to watch with just a couple of clicks. But so far, reality hasn’t matched the hype. Streaming services have been focused on exclusives and original programming, to the extent that the only way to have access to everything available is to spend hundreds of dollars a month on subscription fees. Meanwhile, older films keep disappearing from the digital archives; and even items that cinephiles “own” sometimes become inaccessible whenever software updates or a site shutters.