Middle Class Movies and Cinema’s Short Tail

It’s been a while, I know. I started a new job that took up much of my time. In addition, I needed to gather data and clean it so it can be analyzed. For those of you that are not familiar with the work of analysts, this is the most tedious and time-consuming task. But I am back! Hopefully the data I gathered will allow me to launch several posts in the upcoming weeks. Anyway, I promise not to hibernate again (though the NBA playoffs are just around the corner)!

The idea for the comeback post came to me while reading about the contraction of the American middle class. This is similar to an idea I was contemplating in the last few years: that we are seeing less and less middle size films in cinemas. It’s an all or nothing situation, either huge blockbusters or small art house movies. Like the middle class – it isn’t abolished yet, but it is my feeling is that it is shrinking.

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Lucky 007

Once, not so long ago, I had another blog (in Hebrew). It was (mainly) about cinema and its intersections with politics. Its name? “Yifat, Rotem Yifat“. The address started with a “00Yifat”. All of course alluding to the most famous “undercover” spy in the world, James Bond. The thing is that I am not that big of a fan of 007.  Yes, I have seen all the films, most of them more than once; as I child I imagined myself going to adventures with the assistance of Q’s gadgets. But at the end of the day, it is nothing more than another cinematic franchise, just being one before the phrase was invented. It’s a brand, and a well-known one, so I decided to carry along. Now that the “official” 24th film is in cinemas (and won’t be part of the analysis. I didn’t want to be the weirdo taking notes in the theater), this is a good chance to look into what makes 007.

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What Are Movies Made Of – The Oscars (Pt. 2)

As promised, we are continuing at full speed with our journey into the source material origin of Academy Award winners. In the previous post I presented the method behind the analysis and an overview of the winners by origin type. In the next two posts we will spice things up with the introduction of two unique measures and see how the source material of a film affects the possibility of winning.

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What Are Movies Made Of – The Oscars (Pt. 1)

I don’t know if you remember me, I’m the guy who has a blog about film and statistics. Some time ago I started a “based on” project. Hi. Nice to meet you. It took some time to gather the data dealing with the Academy Awards and analyze it, but I promise it was worth it! There are so many insights I thought it would be better to split them into three different posts.

The first will be an introduction, including a small overview of the winners in the different categories over the years. It will be followed by two posts dedicated to the success chances based on two unique measures. But we have time until we get to the messy calculation stuff. Let’s start by looking at what’s going on at the Oscars.

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What are movies made of? Introduction

“I’d like to thank the academy”

This post has a special meaning for me and for this blog: The questions raised here (and in its followup) are the ones that bothered me in the first place, leading me to do some data inquires on cinema. Almost like clockwork, every year during the the Oscar season I rant against the nominees (and eventually some of the winners) for Best Motion Picture, but especially for the acting categories, that are based on real stories and people. I argue that because people compare the real life person (which they have some knowledge of how they look and act) to the performance, an evaluation is made based on this knowledge, and as a result mimicry suppresses any other acting qualities presented in other roles. This post will be the first in a series dedicated to look into what  source materials movies are based upon. The first post will present a statistical overview of the subject.  Future posts will present  data analysis of the Academy Awards, box office performance and more.Read More »

Mirror, Mirror, who’s the 9est of them all?

Though the name of this blog attests to cinema, we do allow ourselves to wander in other territories, such as TV especially when we are in the midst of  “golden age” so to speak. It is appropriate that the first series we look into is very popular and probably the most controversial one: Game of Thrones.

Because we are interested in data analysis and not content, you can continue reading without being afraid from encountering the demon of all narrative media, AKA the spoiler (unless ratings ruins your experience).

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Mission Impossible: Box office decline

In  (almost) 30 year career, 13% of his time Tom Cruise has spent trying to complete impossible missions. The fact that he succeeds in it repeatedly, both on screen (he does his own stunts) and at the box office (which he benefits from personally as one of the series producers) raises the question,  how impossible is it? maybe by wearing these two  hats , he has figured out the right formula for success. But how good are these movies doing?

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Woody Allen – A (more) rational perspective

Woody Allen is one of the most prolific film makers in American film history. Counting 45 films as director starting with What’s Up, Tiger Lily? From 1964 to Irrational Man from 2015. He has written all of them, though  20% of his movies (9) were collaborators with other script writers. All original material if you don’t include a self help book or overdubbing  a Japanese spy film.Read More »