Screener Season

The best thing about Black Friday week is that that’s generally when award-season screeners start to arrive. The number seems down this year. I might be judging too quickly, but I wonder if the studios are starting to have second thoughts about this method of getting their productions in front of WGA eyeballs.

Disney’s INTO THE WOODS arrived today, and that will probably move right to the top of the stack. Previous UPS and FedEx envelopes have contained:

> Universal’s CHEF (a very strong auteur turn by Jon Favreau, who wrote, directed, produced, and played the lead – if you could use an antidote to terribly serious stories wherein the characters are crushed by the bad things that happen to them, I’d recommend this smile-maker)

> Warner Bros.’ THE JUDGE (terrific performances by Robert Duvall and Robert Downey, Jr., in an emotionally explosive story about father-and-son estrangement)

> Fox Searchlight’s WILD, which is next on my list and promises to be a tour de force by a Reese Witherspoon we haven’t seen before

> Richard Linklater’s BOYHOOD from IFC Films

> the A24 crime drama A MOST VIOLENT YEAR

> Clint Eastwood’s AMERICAN SNIPER, which I think is going to take just the right frame of mind to draw me in

> NIGHTCRAWLER from OpenRoad, written and directed by Dan Gilroy

> Universal’s GET ON UP

> from Sony Pictures Classics, WHIPLASH, LOVE IS STRANGE, and FOXCATCHER

> THE FAULT IN OUR STARS from 20th Century

> GONE GIRL (Regency), which has the look of a very creepy rat-in-a-trap thriller

I think I’m going to have to just skip all the Yule parties…

Leave a Reply