Monthly Archives: January 2015

Best Cinema Experiences of 2014:

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What really counts in this post is the experiences, not the wording or grammar, etc… That’s my polite way of asking you to disregard the lazy, formulaic summaries and to focus on each, particular screening and the atmosphere each created. Also, please forgive my shoty camera work and the quality of some of the videos…

I Origins (Cast and Director Q and A):

I’m a Mike Cahill admirer. “Another Earth” blew me away and I couldn’t wait for his follow up…and it did not disappoint. Oh, and having Michael Pitt join Cahill in a post-screening Q and A was the icing on the cake.

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99 Homes: (Cast and Director Q and A):

Michael Shannon, Laura Dern, and Andrew Garfield so close I could literally reach out and touch them…need I say more? Shannon is one of my all time favourite actors and the chance to hear him speak about his latest film nearly had me in tears of fortune and excitement.

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Locke: (Stephen Knight Q and A):

If you know me, you know that my fandom in regards to Tom Hardy and “Peaky Blinders” knows no bounds. Naturally, having the chance to catch an advance screening of “Locke,” Hardy’s and “Peaky Blinders” creator Steven Knight’s latest collaboration, left me winded. It’s also the only time my mom has ever stepped into my world, the life of a die-hard cinephile. And the fact that she loved it in its entirety left me overjoyed.

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The Imitation Game: (Cast and Crew Q and A):

Benedict Cumberbatch…in person…that is all… Oh, and Keira Knighley and Matthew Goode too.

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Q and A: Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

The Guest: (Director/Writer/Cast Q and A):

This past year’s screening of “The Guest” during TIFF 2014’s Midnight Madness program was easily the most fun I’d had at a cinema all year. Simon Barrett and Adam Wingard are uproariously funny and extremely talented at what they do. Add in the charismatic, unbelievably charming and handsome Dan Stevens in addition to the lovely Maika Monroe, and you’ve got one hell of a theatre experience. The film itself cracks my top 10 of 2014 with ease and this screening has a lot to do with it. I hate to admit it, but having my lame-o friends undergo the craziness with me made all the difference in the world. Plus, we were the only ones to bring a beach ball! Which only added to the over-the-top atmosphere throughout the entire screening. I should probably explain… Midnight Madness is TIFF’s most out of control cinephile experience. There’s loud music beforehand, it starts at midnight, there’s the potent scent of substance abuse lingering in the air, and usually has a ball or two being tossed around. It’s essentially a rock concert that replaces the band with a film.

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The 50 Year Argument: (Martin Scorsese Q and A):

This is, without question, the best experience I’ve ever had in a theatre to date, let alone 2014. Of course, any occasion that has you sitting in the presence of one of cinema’s greatest filmmakers is a monumental occurrence indeed. To be completely honest, the film, “The 50 Year Argument,” although thoroughly engaging and utterly interesting, was simply a welcomed formality, a terrific bonus. Being granted the opportunity to listen and digest Martin Scorsese discussing film and his career for an extended period of time is unlike any euphoric treat that’s ever graced itself to my presence.

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Did you have a particularly awesome cinema experience this past year? Let me know in the comment section below, I’m dying to know! Also, if you haven’t contributed your voice to the latest poll, please click on Vote! in the bar above to do so…don’t make me chase you down!

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Vote! Most Anticipated Films of 2015

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Okay all, you know the drill, it’s time once again to Vote!

With a new year comes a clean slate. The films of 2014 take their leave and we’re left with nothing but speculative anticipation and excitement about the year ahead in cinema, a significant reason why I love being a cinephile, in contrast to every other fandom. Our ability to teem with an uncontrollable eagerness and curiosity in regards to forthcoming films never ceases to amaze me. With that in mind, it’s time to voice your opinion on what we should look forward to in the world of cinema in 2015.

I know I’m a tad late with this, but below you’ll find a rather long list of films set for release in 2015 (took me quite a while to throw it together). Simply select the three at the top of your “most anticipated” list, if I’ve left out one of your selections, feel free to write it in and a couple of weeks from now I will post the results!

The Cinema Monster Update & 2014 Roundup Part 1

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This post officially puts an end to The Cinema Monster’s hiatus of 2014! If you hadn’t noticed, I’d neglected the site for roughly two months, for a variety of reasons, the most prominent of which was a lack of passion. Writing reviews simply became too much of a chore, I’d lost any remaing drive and decided to set my most beloved hobby aside for a while. I won’t bore you with the several other aspects that led to The Cinema Monster being pushed to the backburner, just know that from here on out I will do my utmost to post content…weekly, at the very least.

I don’t have any reviews completed at the moment, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been watching flicks. I’ve kept up with the cinematic universe during my absence and have nearly seen every film I set out to in 2014, with the exception of an important few. For now, I will simply list the films I’ve seen below with my rating alongside. I will do my best to get reviews posted for each film listed, but that will take some time. However, I plan on reviewing each film I see in 2015 as close to their release as possible, so I never fall behind again.

Sometime before the end of the month, I’ve scheduled the second half of my 2014 roundup, once I’ve seen the remaining films on my list. Next week, The Cinematic Katzenjammer, a site I contribute to, will be publishing a summary of our most anticipated films in 2015 which I will reblog for your viewing. Additionally, I have two new Vote! polls that I hope to release sometime next week, which I hope you all will participate in. Finally, I’m currently scrambling together my list of 2014’s best films, which I will also publish before the end of the month, again, once I finish seeing the remaining films on my list.

Over the next couple of weeks, expect the appearance of The Cinema Monster to change as well. And before I forget, a post laying out the Oscar nominations and my predictions will also be out before the month’s end. I know there’s a lot to catch up on and digest here, but I hope you’ll stick it out with me. I pray I didn’t lose too much of you during my unwarranted absence, please feel free to lay into me in the comment section below. The truth is, I missed this more than I’d care to admit and I need to get this site back to where it was before this mess took hold. I will also be catching up on all of your blogs, because simply, I missed you all too damn much. Lastly, I’ve made it my New Years resolution to be more active on Twitter, so follow me (@cinema_monster) if you don’t already.

Now, without further delay, on to the roundup!

’71:  9 out of 10

99 Homes (2015): 8 out of 10

The Babadook: 9 out of 10

Birdman: 9 out of 10

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Them: 8 out of 10

The Drop: 8.5 out of 10

Force Majeure: 9 out of 10

Foxcatcher: 8 out of 10

Frank: 8.5 out of 10

Gone Girl: 9 out of 10

The Guest: 9 out of 10

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies: 8 out of 10

Inherent Vice: Rating Pending Second Viewing

Interstellar: 9.5 out of 10

Kumiko: The Treasure Hunter (2015): 9 out of 10

Mommy: 9 out of 10

Predestination: 7.5 out of 10

Starred Up: 9 out of 10

Still Alice: 7.5 out of 10

Suburban Gothic: 5.5 out of 10

Two Days, One Night: 8 out of 10