T2 Trainspotting

From Beauty and the Beast to Trainspotting 2: Is 2017 any good?

I’ve written before on CURNBLOG about why movies released at the beginning of the calendar year are generally wretched. I’d include a link here, but you all can get off your asses (figuratively; actually you only have to type a few words into a Google search) and find it for yourselves. Sorry, I’m just in…

By Jonathan Eig
The President’s Analyst

The President’s Analyst: The 50th anniversary of a prescient classic

“We, the undersigned mental health professionals, believe in our professional judgment that Donald Trump manifests a serious mental illness that renders him psychologically incapable of competently discharging the duties of the President of the United States.” That is how a recent Change.org petition began and it gathered close to 30,000 signatures in a few weeks.…

By Jonathan Eig
numbers One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

Numbers in Movie Titles: From One to Twelve

From 21 Grams to 47 Ronin. 99 Homes to 127 Hours. 2001: A Space Odyssey to One Million Years B.C. Yes, numbers in movie titles have been a thing. Not a meaningful thing, but then again “ten lords a leaping” isn’t the most meaningful of gifts either. Yet legend has it that if you give…

By Jonathan Eig

The Best of the Rest: The Forgotten Writers, Directors & Performers of 2016

The unloved. The strays. The mutts. There’s value here, but you have to look a little harder. As we all remember John Winger saying, no one is “more faithful, more loyal, more loveable than the mutt.” All right, that’s a very strange (and perhaps a little insulting) way into my annual nominations for the writers,…

By Jonathan Eig
Train to Busan - cool movies

The Hip Six: The Coolest Films of 2016

“He’s the exact opposite of everything I really hate. In a way he’s such a clueless dork that he’s almost cool.” “That guy is many things but he definitely isn’t “cool.” And so goes the argument between Enid (Thora Birch) and Rebecca (Scarlett Johansson) over the merits of Seymour (Steve Buscemi) in Terry Zwigoff’s Ghost…

By Jonathan Eig
The Fits

The Mute Child in Three Films: The Fits, Kicks, and Moonlight

2016 has been a mediocre year for mainstream American film. That doesn’t mean there hasn’t been some excellent work. But the product as a whole has been mired in redundant sequels and superheroes, and the blandness of the output is cause for alarm. But there is also cause for hope. This is all anecdotal for…

By Jonathan Eig
David Bowie - musical talents

Musicians In Film: 10 Great Musical Talents We Lost In 2016

I hesitate to draw conclusions before all the facts are in, but let’s face it. 2016 has sucked. And not just in the land of cinema, where precious few gems have risen above the extraordinary wave of mediocrity we have witnessed. As the world at large retreats from communality, decency and fact, we need artists…

By Jonathan Eig