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leonardmaltin
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Leonard Maltin

Footnote—movie review

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • March 9, 2012 12:30 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Another of this year’s Best Foreign Language Film nominees, Footnote may not be as intense or soul-searching as A Separation or In Darkness, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t superior satisfying entertainment. Israeli writer-director Joseph Cedar mines the richest vein in the world for his material: the quirks and foibles of human nature.

Undefeated—movie review

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • March 1, 2012 6:25 PM
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  • 3 Comments
This year’s Oscar winner for Best Documentary Feature seems almost too good to be true…but that’s what makes it so effective. Directed, photographed and edited by Daniel Lindsay and T.J. Martin, it profiles a most unusual fellow: a volunteer football coach for a Memphis high school that most people have given up on. The fact that he is white and his players are black is barely...

Stop Complaining, Already!

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • February 27, 2012 3:20 PM
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  • 50 Comments
As tired as I am of the long award season that leads up to the Oscars, I am even wearier of the professional complainers whose job, it seems, is to find fault with the Academy Awards show every year, as well as the honors they bestow. I don’t agree with all of the Academy’s choices, and I’m not blind to the faults of the telecast, but it’s become a perpetual punching bag for pundits who are determined not to like what they see. Enough already.

Oscars—On The Radio

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • February 27, 2012 8:18 AM
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  • 4 Comments
By now you might think that every aspect of the Academy Awards has been explored, examined, and dissected—but you’d be wrong. A radio veteran named Jim Hilliker has done an impressive job of research into Oscar’s history in that often-overlooked medium, and provides links to both excerpts and complete broadcasts from the 1930s and 40s. (Did you realize that there was still a separate play-by-play radio broadcast as late as 1968? Neither did I.) As an old-time radio buff I learned a lot from this essay, and while I had heard a few 1940s shows, I never realized that the Academy has posted audio highlights from several years’ programs on its website.

Bullhead—movie review

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • February 17, 2012 12:50 AM
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  • 3 Comments
If I were to sum up my feelings about this film in two words, they would be “grimly fascinating.” Bullhead is the dark horse in this year’s Oscar race for Best Foreign Language Film, a sleeper from Belgium that has won acclaim around the world. Part of the response comes from the excitement of discovery: an unknown writer-director making his feature debut, and creating a gritty crime story (with strong emotional currents) set against an unlikely backdrop.

In Darkness—movie review

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • February 10, 2012 12:40 AM
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  • 3 Comments
The latest in a long line of incredible-but-true stories from World War II turns out to be one of the best. In Darkness dramatizes the saga of a group of Jewish men, women and children who paid a sewer worker in the city of Lvov to hide them underground, little dreaming that they would spend more than a year in that dark, damp, environment.

Lunching With Oscar’s Finest

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • February 7, 2012 1:25 PM
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  • 0 Comments
What a treat, and an honor, to be invited to attend the Oscar Nominees Lunch once again. This unique gathering of over 100 nominees brings together stars, directors, animators, sound men, documentarians, screenwriters, makeup artists, and other collaborators—and treats them all the same. It’s a rare opportunity to commune with leading talents from every aspect of the movie world…but of course, stars get the lion’s share of attention. I told Meryl Streep, “I hope you know you are loved,” and she said she did at that moment, even though “I thought my career was washed up twenty years ago.”

Oscar Welcomes Newcomers

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • January 24, 2012 1:54 PM
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  • 7 Comments
Oscar voters always have some surprises up their collective sleeve, and today was no exception. The actors’ branch is especially welcoming to new talent, as witness the nominations of first-timers Demián Bichir, Rooney Mara, Jean Dujardin, Bérénice Bejo, Octavia Spencer, Jessica Chastain, and Melissa McCarthy. That such relative newcomers are standing toe to toe with the likes of George Clooney and Meryl Streep is a tremendous achievement—and honor.

Oscar, Take A Bow

  • By Leonard Maltin
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  • November 30, 2009 2:06 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Todd Wawrychuk / ©A.M.P.A.S.

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