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Office Christmas Party

Another reminder that allowing your cast to madly improvise instead of actually providing a coherent script with a scintilla of inherent logic often leads to…

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Ballad of Narayama

"The Ballad of Narayama" is a Japanese film of great beauty and elegant artifice, telling a story of startling cruelty. What a space it opens…

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Once is in!

View image We're in.

After an investigation on the eve (literally) of the official Oscar ballot mailing, the executive committee of the Academy's music branch "has met and endorsed the validity of 'Falling Slowly' [from 'Once'] as a nominated achievement. The committee relied on written assurances and detailed chronologies provided by the songwriter of 'Falling Slowly,' the writer-director of 'Once' and Fox Searchlight" [the film's US distributor]. For details, see "Is Once ineligible for Best Original Song Oscar?" below.

The issue centered on whether the song was actually written for "Once" (as Academy rules require), or for the 2006 Czech film "Kráska v nesnázích" ("Beauty In Trouble"), or in some other context. In addition to its performance by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova in "Once," "Falling Slowly" appeared in various versions on three 2006 albums: Hansard and Irglova's "The Swell Season," the "Beauty in Trouble" soundtrack album (also sung by Hansard and Irglova), and "The Cost" by Hansard's band The Frames.

According to David "The Carpetbagger" Carr at the New York Times, music branch chairman Charles Bernstein released a statement about the evolution of "Once" and "Falling Slowly":

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