Sunday, February 26, 2017

Oscars 2017 On The Menu

I usually watch the Oscars, but skipped last year and I haven’t yet decided whether to watch this year’s. But I’ll be sure to check out the nominees.

Oscar2017OddsOf the nominees for Best Picture, it seems that the battle is between La La Land, a crowd pleaser, and Moonlight, a critics favorite. Having watched both, though I enjoyed La La Land, I’m hoping that Moonlight wins. I’d be surprised if Manchester by the Sea gets it – it is not so heavily praised by critics, but its subject matter is closer to mainstream than Moonlight.

Dramas have been favored over comedies and Hollywood is now, more than ever, aware of the bad hand dealt to African American entertainers, so Moonlight has a better chance than a similar movie would have ever had before in the history of this award; then again, La La Land is a story Hollywood finds itself in. Ideally, Emma (mon amour) gets Best Actress and Moonlight gets Best Picture, though Isabelle Huppert is strong competition.
We see Hollywood paying attention to African Americans with an actor of colour nominated in every acting category, while four of five best documentary nominees were made by black filmmakers.
I’m also hoping that Kubo wins Best Animated Feature Film (great combination of Japanese sensibilities and impeccable English culturally-congruent dialogues), while Piper gets the Best Animated Short one.
The ceremony airs live on American TV network ABC and Canadian network CTV, with the official Oscars red carpet broadcast to start at 7 p.m. ET and the awards show itself underway at 8:30 pm ET. 

For those online or on mobile, ABC will also stream the show at abc.com and via its app, while CTV will stream the show via its CTV Go app.

The Oscars: All Access live stream at oscar.com will carry the red carpet segment as well as backstage content from 7 p.m. ET onward. 

While  Toronto's S&P/TSX composite index registered its biggest one-day loss in five months this past Friday, plunging 247.73 points or 1.57 per cent to 15,533.47, with energy, consumer staples and consumer discretionary stocks bearing the brunt of the slump, Canadians are rising stars on the red carpet. Everybody recognized Ryan Gosling and Denis Villeneuve's bids for best actor (La La Land) and director (Arrival) respectively, but I doubt either one will win – and quite frankly, I was not particularly impressed by Arrival. “Canadians are also nominated across multiple Oscar categories, including best picture, animated short, production design, set design, sound mixing, sound editing and documentary feature” (cbc-osc). 

I always try to watch all the movies in the Foreign category. This year, we have

  • Land of Mine (Denmark) – young German POWs forced to clear beaches of land mines
  • A Man Called Ove (Sweden) - a grouchy old man who befriends the new family that moves in next door to him
  • The Salesman (Iran) – director stopped at border, previously won in 2012; the story of a couple whose relationship begins to turn sour during their performance of Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman.
  • Tanna (Australia) – eyecandy on a remote Pacific island, enacted by the Yakel tribe
  • Toni Erdmann (Germany) - A practical joking father tries to reconnect with his hard working daughter by creating an outrageous alter ego and posing as her CEO's life coach.
According to Vox,
You’re supposed to see all five films nominated before voting — which typically favors older, retired voters — but in recent years, that requirement has switched to something more akin to the honor system, rather than having to attend Academy-sanctioned screenings, so its effect has been lessened.
.. which suggests that anyone could win. I once played in Miller’s play as Biff (or was I Happy? can’t remember, just remember practicing), so I’ll be watching The Salesman and it sounds like it has the right combination of familiar through foreign lenses to win. Also, I’ve always found German humour fascinating.

If you want to catch up on the nominated movies, (like I do), Vox has them ranked and they also have the less-talked-about nominees to watch.

If you are in Toronto, you have many free options to watch it live on a big screen!

Sources / More info: imdb-oscars, cbc-osc

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Saturday, December 24, 2016

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Favour Food Delivery Between Abundance And Scarcity

I had to publish the in the Favor (or, more specifically, the now defunct Favour Delivery) before being done. I was stirred to finish this story by an article in The G&M on the subject, which chooses to go squarely against my title.

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Pauperization Of Toronto Food Delivery Scene

With news of Favor Delivery closing and Uber Toronto slashing the fees it pays its drivers, is there any future left for courier work or pleasant, cheap deliveries?

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

my second bicycle stolen

My first bicycle got stolen the moment I left it locked on College St with a crappy lock. I learned my lesson and only used the worst looking (but still functional) bike I could find. I thought it would never get stolen. But it did, and this is its story.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Randall Barrs shooting

The shooting of a criminal lawyer in downtown Toronto in broad daylight has left many of us scratching our heads. Let’s try to add to the speculation, shall we?

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Loblaws tapas dim-sum smörgåsbord

Noticing a sale at a local supermarket deli counter, I thought I make it my breakfast. I ended up with 7 small portions of various snacks, costing me, together with a 650g yogurt, $17.67