Movies

The Overlooked Triumph of “The Revenant”: Music

Sunday, February 28th, 2016

The Revenant was robbed. For all the Oscar nominations The Revenant has received, the movie was victim of a glaring omission: Best Original Score. The score, created by Ryuichi Sakamoto and Alva Noto (with additional music by Bryce Dessner of the National), creates a sonic tapestry that deepens the emotional impact ...

The Ugly Beauty of “The French Connection”

Saturday, February 27th, 2016

An art teacher once told me that a beat-up pair of tennis shoes is a lot more interesting to draw than a brand-new pair. I thought of my art teacher's advice as I re-watched The French Connection during Oscars weekend. The movie is justly famous for its gritty adaptation of Robin ...

Movie Trailers Shine As Digital Stars

Friday, February 26th, 2016

With the 2016 Academy Awards fast approaching, Google has created a terrific piece of event-based content by ranking the popularity of the trailers for the Oscar Best Picture nominees. Google ranks The Revenant Number One based YouTube trailer views, which is ironic given that a trailer promoting a film made ...

Six Famous Movies That Lived up to Massive Hype

Sunday, December 27th, 2015

What's more impressive: the fact that 195 nations signed a global accord on climate change or that Star Wars: The Force Awakens lived up to the hype? I'm going to go with Star Wars. The Paris Agreement to fight climate change still needs to be implemented. The Force Awakens has delivered ...

How Movie Theaters Are Competing Harder for Your Time and Money

Wednesday, August 12th, 2015

Movie theaters face the same challenge as sports stadiums: they need to fill seats even when they cannot control the quality of the product they offer. Wrigley Field must sell tickets and concessions whether the Chicago Cubs are contending for the pennant or dwelling in the cellar. iPic Theaters and ...

Why Mr. Spock Endures

Saturday, February 28th, 2015

How does a fictional character eclipse his real-life creator and become embedded in the fabric of popular culture? I have been pondering the question while watching the widespread outpouring of grief and nostalgia in the wake of the death of Leonard Nimoy, the man who gave us Mr. Spock. When my ...

Three Oscar-Winning Movies That Rewrote History

Thursday, February 19th, 2015

Oscar-nominated movies should place more importance on historical accuracy than storytelling -- at least that's the conclusion you might draw from the criticisms lodged at American Sniper, The Imitation Game, and Selma. An angry cabal of tut-tutting, self-appointed guardians of public taste have attacked the directors of these movies for having the ...

Do You Trust Your Audience? A Lesson from a Great Movie

Monday, February 16th, 2015

Do you trust your audience? Before you answer "Sure!" make sure you watch the famous "Sam the Lion" monologue from the Oscar-winning movie The Last Picture Show. In just four minutes, Director Peter Bogdanovich offers a lesson on earning the trust of your audience, one that applies to any content marketer. The ...

Ellen DeGeneres, the Oscars, and the Era of the Visual Storyteller

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

The defining moment of the 2014 Academy Awards happened in the audience and on Twitter. While the Oscars ceremony lumbered along with the usual moments of awkward onstage patter and stars showcasing their plastic surgery, Ellen DeGeneres snapped the selfie that was seen around the world: a joyous moment of ...

Prada and Kenzo: Brands as Entertainers

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

Brands often think of content marketing as the art of being useful. Betty Crocker teaches us how to cook through the iconic Betty Crocker Cookbook. Verizon publishes useful ideas about apps through its Recapp blog. But content marketing can also be about entertainment, as demonstrated by two recently released short ...