Best of 2012: 3 films by foreign directors you didn’t see… but should have

Gareth Evans. director of 'The Raid: Redemption'
Gareth Evans. director of ‘The Raid: Redemption’

1. The Raid: Redemption
Written and directed by Gareth Evans
Starring: Iko Uwais, Doni Alamsyah, Joe Taslim, Yayan Ruhian
Welsh-born Gareth Evans brings one of the best-directed action/crime/martial arts movies of all time in his third film. The story itself is simple: A team of special force police officers in Jakarta are sent to a building to arrest the crime lord that owns it and rents apartments out to the seediest criminals in town. Once inside, the team is detected and the crime lord makes an offer over the building’s intercom — anyone that can kill the cops gets free rent for life. What follows is an edge-of-your-seat thrill ride between good guys and bad guys featuring fast-paced Pencak Silat-style fight scenes. The story offers a few unexpected twists and turns, but it’s the level of danger and remarkable fight choreography that leaves you breathless.

Read moreBest of 2012: 3 films by foreign directors you didn’t see… but should have

Forget the usual fare, these are the Christmas movies you need to watch

Billy Bob Thornton is one 'Bad Santa'
Billy Bob Thornton is one ‘Bad Santa’

Every year, movie websites list the best Christmas movies ever.  The same movies are always on those lists and at TailSlate we like to do things differently.  So here is our list of some of the best Christmas movies, but only those that were released in the last 25 years.  In alphabetical order (no value judgments about which is best) they are:

Read moreForget the usual fare, these are the Christmas movies you need to watch

Snubbing of ‘Middle of Nowhere’ highlights Hollywood’s failure to address diversity issues

Emayatzy Corinealdi and David Oyelowo in 'Middle of Nowhere'
Emayatzy Corinealdi and David Oyelowo in ‘Middle of Nowhere’

It’s a very small list with only 20 names on it. The names of ten men and ten women will be read on January 10, 2013 as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announces the nominees for the four acting categories for the year 2012.

If the nominees already named, by the Broadcast Film Critics, SAG and other awards are illustrative of any trends, there will be very few minorities among those nominated.

Read moreSnubbing of ‘Middle of Nowhere’ highlights Hollywood’s failure to address diversity issues

Roger Ebert reviews ‘Killing Them Softly’… and gets major plot points wrong!

I want to start by saying Roger Ebert is one of the reasons I learned to love film and became a film critic.

After I’ve finished a review my usual next step is to read his review of the same film. Sometimes I find a nuance that I overlooked. My review may or may not agree with his, and neither of us are right or wrong, criticism of film is opinion-based. But I was so shocked by his review of the recent Killing Them Softly that I felt compelled to point out that he really blew this one.

Read moreRoger Ebert reviews ‘Killing Them Softly’… and gets major plot points wrong!

Countdown to ‘Skyfall’ – A history of the James Bond film franchise Part 7

Pierce Brosnan inherits the role of James Bond with 'Goldeneye' years after having to pass on it for a TV show
Pierce Brosnan inherits the role of James Bond with ‘Goldeneye’ years after having to pass on it for a TV show

By April of 1994, Timothy Dalton decided enough was enough.

Licence to Kill had come out in 1989, done okay at the box office, yet no sequel was on the horizon.  So, he quit.  Now Cubby Broccoli and his team had to decide who to cast as their lead character, and decided to give one actor a second shot.

Pierce Brosnan.

Read moreCountdown to ‘Skyfall’ – A history of the James Bond film franchise Part 7