American Sniper may not have come out of Oscar weekend with any of the top prizes, but it did come away with a new cumulative box office of more than $320 million. That's by far the highest of any war film in history, not to mention more than all the other Oscar Best Picture nominees combined.
Today marks the 73rd anniversary of The Battle of Los Angeles, also known as The Great LA Air Raid, one of the most mysterious incidents of World War II -- and one of the most colorful tales in all of UFO lore. It's also a tale we couldn't resist turning into a movie.
As a Connecticut Yankee born and bred -- or perhaps I should say born and white-bread, which is how most people think of Connecticut Yankees -- I have always loved history, not just because I am old enough to be historical myself, but because I could never do algebra.
There is no shortage of Holocaust memorials, museums and foundations dedicated solely to preserving the history of Nazi crimes against Europe's Jews during the Second World War. Yet there is a shortage of funds for financial aid for survivors.
The idea of Important differs from Best: for American Sniper, Selma, and Unbroken, Best is beside the point. Each film is enormously engaging, highly recommended, and grounded in history on a large canvas.
In Hollywood, the art of the deal takes precedence over audience appeal. Ideas and screenplays are bought and produced with millions of dollars before any consumer is allowed to take a peek at the results.
So maybe it's not just Hollywood creatives who are newly aware of what Universal Parks & Resorts can do. But a whole new generation of theme park fans who have finally learned to appreciate the Universal difference.
Over a third of the 14 films in competition at the Deauville American Film Festival this year were genre pieces -- thriller or suspense or horror -- from Ana Lily Amirpour's vampire flick A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night to the political thriller A Most Wanted Man featuring Philip Seymour Hoffman.
This has a lot of cooking with a bit of love spiced in with the cooking, there are some fantastic one-liners that make the audience roar with laughter and this is all included in a fantastic adventure.
The success of the movie, produced by Steven Spielberg, Juliet Blake and Oprah Winfrey, is that it serves to remind us of the joy of eating together and the connection that food can bring to families, communities and love affairs.