Politics is a total mess these days, but here’s some news out of Washington that veeryone can enjoy. President Obama is the guest editor of the new Wired Magazine, and as part of his work for the publication, he shared his favorite science-fiction movies and television shows. The POTUS even went to the trouble of provide helpful links to where you can watch each of the shows or films online. What a guy.
We’re in the middle of an Oscar season that’s more unpredictable than ever before, especially following Sunday’s particularly nutty Golden Globes. But in all the unknown, one possible indicator has appeared to (hopefully) make our Academy Awards forecasts a little easier.
By this time of year we usually know who our Oscars frontrunners are. Last year it was Birdman v. Boyhood, and before that 12 Years a Slave and Gravity made the tops of award pundits’ ballots. This year’s race is turning out to be the most unpredictable in years. Earlier this fall Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight slid into the frontrunner spot when it debuted at the Toronto Film Festival. But it’s looking like the praise has reached a plateau now that the Oscar spotlight is beginning to point in other directions. On one hand, it’s a great thing since 2015 has given us such a variety of great filmmaking that slapping labels on films before voting begins is becoming harder and harder. On the other, it makes this race anyone’s best guess.
Pan has had disaster written all over it for the better part of a year now, so it’s not surprising that Joe Wright’s Peter Pan origin story stumbled in its opening weekend. However, no one was prepared for it to stumble as badly as it did as it ran face-first into The Martian and Hotel Transylvania 2.
Ridley Scott is quite fond of releasing director’s cuts of his films, and while there will be an eventual extended cut of The Martian on DVD and Blu-ray, you can watch one of the scenes that didn’t make it into the theatrical version right now. Released from the “Ares Archives,” the scene above features Matt Damon’s astronaut Mark Watney doing what he does best: science. And jokes. Lots of jokes.