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kenmorefield

2015 Arts & Faith Ecumenical Jury

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My nominations:

World of Tomorrow (this is a short, but it's probably going to be in my personal top 3 of the year)

White God

Girlhood

The Drop Box

Clouds of Sil Maria

And because someone should nominate it: Mad Max: Fury Road

I'll second Steve Jobs and Paddington.

 

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Nominate:

THE WITCH

IT FOLLOWS

WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE

EX MACHINA

MISTRESS AMERICA

Second:

OUR LITTLE SISTER

CLOUDS OF SILS MARIA (TIFF 2014 release, but 2015 theatrical release in both Canada and USA; it will be on my year end top ten likely)

MAD MAX: FURY ROAD 

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A related question: what's the process to get hooked up with screeners? My brothers and I have run a blog for the last 4 years, but we don't get a ton of hits (~2000 per month). How would/who would one need to contact to see if we're eligible? Feel free to PM me if you have any information, especially those in a Canadian context.

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It's great to be part of this jury again, and I'm looking forward to finding all sorts of great films I've missed throughout the year. I'm also thankful we're taking the more inclusive approach to nominations, since several of my noms last year which I doubt many had a chance to see (Stations of the Cross, La Sapienza, The Fool), are eligible again this year.

It'll probably similar this year, since most of my nominations are films that went around the 2015 festival circuit, and only a couple have had wider releases, but I think it's valuable for more international and indie films to be included on a list like this anyways. 

A related question: what's the process to get hooked up with screeners? My brothers and I have run a blog for the last 4 years, but we don't get a ton of hits (~2000 per month). How would/who would one need to contact to see if we're eligible? Feel free to PM me if you have any information, especially those in a Canadian context.

I’m in the same boat as Anders. I’ve begun to receive occasional screeners, but any information on where/who to contact would be much appreciated.

 

Second:

Stations of The Cross

Mustang

It Follows

 

Nominate:

La Sapienza

O, Brazen Age

Kaili Blues

45 Years

The Fool

Louder Than Bombs

A Midsummer’s Fantasia

‘71

The Assassin

Murmur of the Hearts

Right Now, Wrong Then

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A related question: what's the process to get hooked up with screeners? My brothers and I have run a blog for the last 4 years, but we don't get a ton of hits (~2000 per month). How would/who would one need to contact to see if we're eligible? Feel free to PM me if you have any information, especially those in a Canadian context.

Are you talking about screeners for the jury? Or are you just separately asking why you don't get screeners in general? That might be best answered elsewhere if it's the latter. (I can make a blog post, but it's kind of snarky, because I get a *lot* of requests from people asking if I can hook them up with screeners. 

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Not for the jury. I wouldn't expect to receive them just for that purpose, nor would I expect you to "hook me up" with screeners.

Josh mentions beginning to receive occasional screeners. Did that happen out of the blue? Our site has gotten some occasional interest from indie distributors and even a book to review once.  Perhaps I need to research whether our site is being indexed enough and whether we're gaining any kind of social media traction, but to be honest between the PhD and children I don't have time. I've not reached out to publicists because I haven't been able to (or, rather, haven't spent enough time) tracking down their contact info and I'm uncertain whether we warrant enough attention based on our traffic. I've heard some PR folks won't even reply to inquiries from smaller blogs because they are inundated with requests.

So, I'm happy to hear your response, snarky though it may be, but any kind of mentoring here is appreciated. We can move this to a different thread though so we don't derail the nomination process here.

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Hi, hello. Firstly, I want to say that I'm absolutely honored and thrilled to be a part of this jury. I only recently began writing criticism (last Sept. to be exact), and one of my goals at the beginning of this year was to be a part of a collective like this--notably, this one. So thanks for letting a n00b like me be a part of such an esteemed and talented group. (Some of you are the very inspiration which helped push me to pursue writing/criticism.) 

Secondly, in regard to Ken's earlier post about what we shall consider 2015 releases or not, this list of NYC releases from Mike D'Angelo's blog is exhaustive and can be quite a helpful navigational resource: http://www.panix.com/~dangelo/nymaster.html.

Now to the real work. 

Seconds: 

LA SAPIENZA (which is on Netflix Instant)

EX MACHINA

MISTRESS AMERICA

Nominations:

CINDERELLA

CRIMSON PEAK

QUEEN OF EARTH

WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS

IRIS

COBAIN: MONTAGE OF HECK

FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD

 

There are a lot of 2015 titles available on Netflix Instant or Amazon Prime, many of which are foreign releases and docs. If I have access to screeners nearer year's end or can find useful information on how to acquire them, I'll gladly share that information. Last year I was able to get a few from my editors at Movie Mezzanine. 

Ken, as we nominate, would it be helpful to include a parenthetical reference by those titles if they are available to stream easily/free, i.e. Netflix or Prime?

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Glad that this jury could finally lure you to post here on A&F, Colin!

Second:

WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS

CRIMSON PEAK

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Ken, as we nominate, would it be helpful to include a parenthetical reference by those titles if they are available to stream easily/free, i.e. Netflix or Prime?

You are welcome to do so, but I wouldn't see it as necessary here. A juror interested in a movie will probably check himself or herself. 

That said, A&F members (not just jurors) often bump a film's thread or post in the film's thread when a film becomes available on Netflix or Prime. So if you want to lobby for a particular film, it's okay to note that here, though based on last year most discussion migrates to the film's thread. 

Typical sequence:
Critic A: I nominate ______
Critic B: Oh, good call that was great!
Critic C: Huh? Never heard of it, where did you see it?
Critic A: Oh, it's on Netflix now. (Or Studio X is sending out screening links if you want to ask...)
Critic C: What's good about it? Why should I watch it? 
Critic A: Link to film-specific A&F thread.


 

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A few more nominations:

Beasts of No Nation

Sicario

Slow West

Shaun the Sheep

I forgot to second Winter Sleep, and will do so now.

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I will go ahead an open nominations now by nominating the following films:

(Dis)honesty -- The Truth About Lies

The Martian

Everest

99 Homes

Honor Thy Father (though I don't know how many others will be able to see it)

Spotlight

Stations of the Cross

Our Little Sister

Love & Mercy

 

I second :

"The Martian"

"Love and Mercy"

"Everest"

 

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"The Walk" -Loved the visuals and the concept of perseverance and exploring the "birth of the Twin Towers" and examining the dream of a man who brought humanity to the steel structures

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I apologize greatly if I have nominated stuff that's been nominated instead of seconding, messed with numbers, etc. I am very bad at bulletin boards, which is why you never see me here. 

Seconds: 

- Clouds of Sils Maria

- Inside Out

- Love & Mercy

- Mad Max: Fury Road

- Salt of the Earth

- World of Tomorrow

- Spotlight

- Steve Jobs

 - Slow West

- Beasts of the Southern Wild

 

Nominations:

- The End of the Tour

- Going Clear

- Prophet's Prey

- Don Verdean

- Listen to Me Marlon

- Best of Enemies

- 99 Homes

- Straight Outta Compton

- The Armor of Light

- The Wolfpack

- Mountains May Depart (I'm not clear on whether this is a 2015 release)

- The Witch (ditto)

- Last Days in the Desert (same)

Edited by Alissa Wilkinson

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I am fine with The Witch and Mountains May Depart given our liberal eligibility interpretations outlined above, but I will need some context for Beasts of The Southern Wild, which I show listed as 2012. 

I think Listen to Me Marlon and 99 Homes are technically seconds, so I'll go ahead and list them. If I miss a film that's been seconded, anyone feel free to remind me.


Ken

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I will go ahead an open nominations now by nominating the following films:

(Dis)honesty -- The Truth About Lies

The Martian

Everest

99 Homes

Honor Thy Father (though I don't know how many others will be able to see it)

Spotlight

Stations of the Cross

Our Little Sister

Love & Mercy

 

I second :

"The Martian"

"Love and Mercy"

"Everest"

 

I second "Mad Max: Fury Road"

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Hi everyone. We've added two more jurors, Lauren Wilford and Noel T. Manning II (see above). 

I've had some chat with Greg on PM about jury size and wanted to propose an idea. I like the smaller jury. Anyone who is in a voting organization (or observes awards season) can tell you that the bigger the jury pool, the more the awards conform, look the same, and skew towards advantaging mainstream studio films with wide distribution. One thing I liked much about our list last year was that it was distinctive without being esoteric. It reflected us and our mission. 

On the flip side, A&F is historically about inclusion. Last year I was able to include everyone who indicated he/she wanted to be on the jury. Another thing I liked much about our list last year was that it had a nice blend of professional critics and passionate amateurs (or just plain ole cinephiles). Is there any way to have the best of both worlds? Is 12 a magic number? Or, if it is an arbitrary number, what is the threshold where it ceases to be a jury and becomes a site-wide election?

So here is my idea: cap the jury at 18 (that allows a few more late entries if there are any). *Any* juror can nominate films, second, lobby, or vote. But the final list will be comprised of the films that have the highest average on the 12 ballots from jurors who have seen the highest percentage of nominated films. That way, if someone like Jeff or Anders (or Mark Moring who I am talking to on e-mail) is concerned that his/her less voluminous viewing might skew the voting by keeping a film from reaching the 50% threshold, he/she can still participate. Also, last year, particularly in the 7-15 slots, the scores were very, very, close (as in like 3.32 vs. 3.31, etc.) Perhaps if there was a functional tie, I could use the votes of the additional jurors to break ties among films they *had* seen. 

What does everyone think about this? Is it fair? Or would we rather keep a hard cap on the number of jurors and be more exacting about how widely viewed a juror has to be in order to qualify?

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Mark (Moring) declined to sit in the jury this year, but he did say he hoped someone would nominate

I Am Big Bird

Still Life

Time Out of Mid

So I'm doing so for him to assure that these films are considered. 

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To keep in step with A&F historically (as you state, not I–since I'm new to the community), I think your idea is fair. We should certainly uphold the spirit of inclusion while offering a unique enough list of films. Your angle seems precise enough to not err toward the mainstream and to also represent a more varied range of viewer. Let's give it a try.

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