WEB : Watching and Liveblogging the Oscars..

Join me at the live blog discussion at mlive.com here.

I'll be live-updating the winners here in this blog. Keep refreshing the page :

  • Best Supporting Actress : Penelope Cruz (yaay!)
  • Best Original Screenplay : Milk
  • Best Adapted Screenplay : Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best Animated Feature Film : Wall - E
  • Best Animated Short Film : La Maison En Petits Cubes
  • Best Art Direction : The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Best Costume Design : The Duchess
  • Best Makeup : The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
  • Best Cinematography : Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best Live Action Short Film : Toyland (Germany)
  • Best Supporting Actor : Heath Ledger (well-deserved!)
  • Best Documentary Feature : Man On Wire (yaay!)
  • Best Documentary Short Subject : Smile Pinki
  • Best Visual Effects : The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (what? beating TDK & Iron Man?)
  • Best Sound Editing : The Dark Knight
  • Best Sound Mixing : Slumdog Millionaire (wow! I thought TDK got this locked)
  • Best Film Editing : Slumdog Millionaire
  • Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award : Jerry Lewis
  • Best Original Score : Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best Original Song : Jai Ho - Slumdog Millionaire (..I still think Springsteen should nab this one)
  • Best Foreign Language Film : Departures (Japan) (beating Waltz With Bashir! Yaay!)
  • Best Directing : Danny Boyle - Slumdog Millionaire
  • Best Actress : Kate Winslet - The Reader
  • Best Actor : Sean Penn - Milk (I kinda' expect he would win.. but quite a suprise)
  • Best Picture : Slumdog Millionaire (as expected!)
8 major awards for Slumdog Millionaire, Sean Penn beating Mickey Rourke, Penelope won, Heath Ledger emotional win, Winslet out-of breath speech and funny Japanese acceptance speeches ("Domo Arigato, Mr Roboto!"). All and all it was a good show.

It's a wrap.

WEB : Watchmen Mega Pics Spam & Viral Links

Just a few days away from the upcoming official release of Watchmen.
But for now, enjoy the pics & links below..

Cool portrait pictures from Empire magazine.

Newly released pictures.. Nite Owl's Antartica's Suit, The many faces of Rorschach, The Axis of Evil and International Alternate Posters..


Watchmen viral marketing campaign is awesome.
Check out the 8-bit, 1980's arcade style online game below.

(click here to play)

A great introduction to The Minutemen in this video journal..

Watchmen co-creator Dave Gibbons speaks..

The New Frontiersman faux-PSA, The Keene Act & You..

Watchmen comic within the comic story, Tales of The Black Freighter (and Under the Hood) is getting a DVD release.. yaay! Here's the trailer..

Other Links :

Official Watchmen Movie Web Site - official site
Watchmen Movie Production Blog - tons of behind the scenes videos
I Watch The Watchmen - recommended
Watchmen: The Official Movie Countdown Widget - you can put the widget in your blog
Watchmen: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - click if you want to hear MCR version of Bob Dylan's 'Desolation Row'
The New Frontiersman Viral Microsite - awesome viral stuff
Watchmencomicmovie.com - my personal fave
Watchmen Wiki - all things Watchmen

FILM : Official Quentin Tarantino's 'Inglorious Basterds' Trailer

.. or click here for the HD version.

Can't help but feel that this trailer is a little bit on the commercial side, probably made by The Weinstein Company.. because we all know, Quentin always has something hiding up his sleeves.

Looks cool.. what do u guys think?

FILM : Review - The Good, The Bad, The Weird (2008)

Pure maniacal fun.

Those are probably the most accurate words to describe Kim Ji-Woon's The Good, The Bad, The Weird (TGTBTW), an obvious homage to Sergio Leone's The Good, The Bad and The Ugly but smart enough to pay respects to its Italian spaghetti western predecessors while mixing it with its own unique Asian flavor to the genre. It's masterfully directed, damn funny and most importantly thoroughly enjoyable (at 129 minutes!).

The story of TGTBTW is actually very simple. The film is set in 1930's Manchuria and the title refers to three Manchurian gunslingers, all after the same mysterious treasure map (a Mcguffin - much like the briefcase in QT's Pulp Fiction).

In the first of many references to Sergio Leone's masterpiece, the film trio is introduced one at a time : The Weird (Song Kang-ho) is a klutzy thief and who accidentally comes across the map during the opening train robbery scene. The Bad is a ruthless bandit (Lee Byung-hun) and The Good is a bounty hunter and sharpshooter (Jung Woo-sung). Unsure of each other personal motivations, The Good and The Weird team up to secure the map and reach the treasure site before either The Bad or the imperialist Japanese beat them there. In other words, the whole movie is a damn big chase sequence, like a more violent and stylish version of Wacky Races.

In true Leone fashion, the movie boils down to a succession of set-pieces -wide-open plains and deserts, train robberies, gun battles, knife fights, opium dens, horse chases and tense Mexican stand-offs - but Ji-woon, a master at mood manipulation, (as witnessed on his previous films, A Bittersweet Life and A Tale Of Two Sisters) once again delivers a genre-busting film, with moments of extreme sadistic violence are mixed with comedy and action, and grand action set-pieces played with calmer character driven drama.

While the film may be lacking in plot (unnecessary subplot involving Russian mobsters) and story depth, it is indeed a very stylish eye-candy. The action is beautifully choreographed and incorporates everything from classic Mexican standoffs to fast paced swordplay and Kung-fu wire work. I guarantee you will enjoy the opening train robbery scene and the very elaborate and completely ridiculous jeep-horse chase sequence across the desert that's like a Guy Ritchie film meets The Road Warrior. It's exciting, funny and entertaining as hell!

Chemistry among the three lead actors are great. Lee Byung-hun, much like Lee Van Cleef's Angel Eyes is decent as an insecure bandit with the typical Korean sadistic gangster mentality that we all love from Korean gangster flicks. Least developed of the three, is Jung Woo-sung, gracefully playing a cool and calm bounty-hunter reminisce of Clint Eastwood's Blondie. But the heart and soul of the movie is Song Kang-ho, in a very commanding comedic performance evoking Eli Wallach's Tuco. It comes as no surprise that all three of the lead actors were nominated in the 3rd Asian Film Awards (full nominees list here).

Kudos also should be given to the musical score, riffing on Latin rhythms and brass orchestration, along with heavy Asian percussion. One scene in mind is during the thrilling climax, the wild percussion-heavy music starts to morph into Nina Simone's 'Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood'. Pure brilliance.

TGTBTW is not the first 'oriental Western' (as it bills itself on closing credits). Last year, Takashi Miike's Sukiyaki Western Django is a perfect example of genre-busting J-Western, and Chinese director He Ping already had a crack at a C-Western with Sun Valley. But then again, the original spaghetti Westerns of the 1960s were partly inspired by Japanese samurai movies, anyway. Some people may suggest that this movie has bitten off more than it can chew for what is essentially an old-school chase movie. Some may call it a ridiculous, silly movie. Well, it is... but it's the most amazing, incredible silliness I've ever seen in a long time.