We here at FSR pride ourselves on speaking with authority. It doesn’t always happen (especially when I’m writing about Inception after drinking three boxes of wine), but it’s the goal we strive for. We’re bursting on the brink of boastfulness to provide a service most other film sites don’t offer – the ingenuity and odd creativity of our team of writers.
Our readership is up 46% this year and that’s thanks in a major way to our fans, to the fourth box of wine, and to these features and editorials.
If you missed them the first time, enjoy adding your two cents. If you’re catching them for the second time around, feel free to flame on for old time’s sake. (Click on any of the titles below to read the full articles.)
15. The Movie World Cup
By: Cole Abaius and Rob Hunter (and readers)
Where else can you see The Dark Knight vs Spirited Away? Where else can you see a movie from Ivory Coast go up against a movie from Portugal? Where else can you see the United States, you know, win the World Cup?
This feature was one of the most entertaining to put together, especially because it showcased the host of incredible film that exists from all over the world. Rob covers the hell out of these films every week with Foreign Objects, but the Movie World Cup was a great way to celebrate those films even further and tap into what people in the sports world don’t call June Madness.
By: Robert Levin
It’s unclear exactly when it became popular to hate Nicolas Cage, but it happened, and then something magical occured in 2010. He became a cultural meme by the end of it all with people paying more attention to him going crazy in real life as opposed to going crazy in films. Fortunately, he went gloriously crazy in films this year, and the case has to be made for his attaining genius stature.
By: Cole Abaius
Out of sheer spitefulness aimed at the horrendous attitude toward the press that Comic-Con holds, I wrote a missive explaining exactly how you, dear fan, can avoid the high ticket prices (and the sold-out situation) and get into the damned trailer convention for free. It’s not too late to pretend your website is a year old, print up some fake business cards, and apply for credentials.
By: Rob Hunter
The thing missing from internet discussions of films these days is passion and positivity. It seems to be a lot of snark and sarcasm as a place holder for genuine thought and the bare-boned, bare-backed love of film that brought us here in the first place. Hunter’s heartfelt piece explores the personal connection that comes from the exterior elements that go into how and when and why we discover a movie. It’s the kind of thing we hope to do more of in 2011.
By: Adam Charles
The Oscars come up a lot because, like it or not, they are still the watershed assembly for the Best of the Best. The apparent distance being created between the fans and the awards is fair game, though. Here, Adam writes a fantastic missive that still applies to this year’s round of Oscar buzz. Will people be apathetic about the Oscars this year because they haven’t seen the nominees?
By: Robert Fure
This year saw the continued question of the artistic worth of video games. Ebert still doesn’t think they’re art, and he’ll end up on the wrong side of aesthetic history there, especially if Robert has anything to say about it. He examines one of the biggest games of the year (one that Jon Favreau and Daniel Craig played a ton while making Cowboys & Aliens), and marvels in the sheer cinematic quality of Red Dead Redemption.
By: Cole Abaius
This is the question that sparked a disgusting amount of conversation – just the kind we like. It’s less of an editorial, and more of a launchpad, but it remains an important topic for anyone trying to make a buck by letting the cameras role. For those of us just trying to enjoy things we love, it’s still difficult to mentally get a hold on whether it’s okay to steal from our loved ones.
By: Robin Ruinsky
2009 was a year marked by the strange absence of strong female roles and performances. Award-givers strained to find worthy actresses to hand off statues to – not for any lack of talent, but for the lack of roles out there. Appropriately, in the same year, The Hurt Locker had a lock on the major awards, and Kathryn Bigelow crossed some milestones. Robin celebrates Bigelow’s achievement of winning Best Director from the DGA and looks ahead to a future where Bigelow would end up winning the Oscar as well.
By: Jack Giroux
Jonah Hex is ending up on more than a few Worst Of lists (including ours), and for good reason. The tone was muddy, the fun wasn’t fun, and the whole thing was a chore to watch. Jack does the digging to find out what was changed, kept, and cut from the original Neveldine and Taylor script. It’s the ridiculous R-rated version that the world would have embraced with open arms. It’s also the version that never made it to the cameras.
By: Cole Abaius, Rob Hunter, Landon Palmer, and Adam Charles
Perhaps our least seen feature of the year, and without a doubt the most fun to put together, we took the ancient concept of the 36 Dramatic Situations and used them to frame some of our favorite films. It’s a feature that spans Se7en and The Lion King with equal fervor. Plus, it boasted family against family fights, fugitives on the run, incest and adultery – the kind of excitement that the whole family can enjoy.
By: Cole Abaius
The last of the question mark editorials on this list, it might as well have been called “Stop Calling It Torture Porn.” In fact, that’s a better title, but what’s done is done. From the murky definition to the outlandishness of comparing any genre of films to pure masturbation material is only funny when we’re talking about Sofia Coppola. This particular aggression did not stand.
By: Robert Fure and the FSR staff
This feature, already in its third year, continues to get better and better. Robert and Rob (aided by the faithful FSR staff) combed through the blood-covered box they keep in the attic to highlight the scares, bare chests, and lessons that we can all appreciate from great horror flicks like The Ring, The Exorcist, Peeping Tom, Suspiria, My Bloody Valentine 3D and 25 others. Plus, we also learned about even more horror movies from the readers and gave away some prizes for the information.
By: Genevieve Blaber
Not movie related? Sure, but Lost was one of the biggest cultural phenomena to come to an end this year (the other was Cher’s career). This easier-than-the-plot- guide explains everything you needed to know about the finale and what it all meant. Genevieve does a stellar job of clearing away the tall grass so we can see the forest and the trees.
By: Cole Abaius
It seems clear that comic book movies and other geek properties are losing their luster in Hollywood. Even as Spider-Man sees a reboot and a host of other characters are trying to see the big screen, the bloom is off the rose. In fact, it’s things like seeing Spider-Man rebooted that highlights the end of the cycle more than anything else. However, there’s something even worse that this era of movies has brought to the industry. It effects writers, directors, producers and fans alike.
By: Neil Miller
Back in February, Neil decided to eat 50 chicken NcNuggets, an extra large fry, drink a large milk shake and a 44oz soda – all before Super Size Me could roll its credits. For some reason, I decided to join him in the quest. What resulted was an existential movie watching experience, and here, Neil writes in flourishing detail the kind of physical and emotional feeling that stuffing that much food into your face can result in. Poignant writing that makes you want to vomit. It doesn’t get much better than that.
Honorable Mention: Our April Fool’s Joke
By: The FSR Staff
The reason this didn’t make the list is that it deserves a list all its own. While other film sites were making up fake rumors about Megan Fox playing the president or Jude Law playing The Riddler for Batman 3, we were busy transforming FSR into the FSR of 1980. From stories about Clash of the Titans, the 3D fad, and more Stars Wars movies, the past felt eerily like the present.