Sunday, February 24, 2013

Oscars and Revelations...2013!

Once again I've accomplished the difficult--I won't say it's impossible--and watched all the nominated films.  Nine movies later I'm ready to rank them, but though I've said I've ranked them in order of "winability" in years past, I think that looking back I've really ranked them in order of how felt they should be perceived.  It's a mix of both I think--what I think is deserving and what I know will win.  I will say that I had a very difficult time ranking the six out of nine films listed here.

Once done, however, I'm sticking to it.  We shall see how right I am, but I must say this was a year I really enjoyed watching the many different films nominated.


 I never thought I would say this, but Ben Affleck was totally robbed.  I loved this movie.  I was totally engaged from beginning to end, moving right along with this fast paced thriller.  Every scene led into the next one, every moment was important, and when I was over I wanted to watch it all over again.  This is a movie people will watch in ten years, twenty years, even thirty.  It will never get old and it will always be fun.  And did I mention the costumes?  The costumes rock.  Makeup, costumes, scenery, everything.  I LOVED this movie.

Zero Dark Thirty
 I never, NEVER thought I would like this movie so much.  I dragged my feet.  I crossed my arms and scowled at the film.  I mean, for Christ's sake, it's a war film!  It's filled with torture scenes!  But I couldn't help myself.  I was on the edge of my seat the whole time.  My favorite part of this film was Jessica Chastain.  She's fantastic.  She's a strong woman convinced she's right, and she spends the entire film breaking down barriers.  Watching her made some of the less savory elements of the film worthwhile.
Silver Linings Playbook
There were a couple things that spoke to me about this film.  First was that it showed that everyone is dealing with some kind of mental problem, not just those with mental illness.  And that in fact a child with those problems can actually help bring his family together, not necessarily drive it apart.  Having family myself that suffered from mental illness, it was no surprise to me to learn that the director of this film has a son with mental illness.  In the end, it is the people with mental illness that find the "silver lining" saving those around them.  Jennifer Lawrence is good, Bradley Copper is great, but Robert DeNiro steals every scene.  Watch it, I promise you'll love it.  Also kudos to the academy for realizing that humor and romance shouldn't automatically strike it from the list.


 Okay, okay, it was good.  But I still stand by my opinion that this is blatant Oscar pandering.  Blatant.  That being said it was very well done, and of course Daniel Day-Louis basically channeled the soul of Abraham Lincoln.  I don't know how he does it.  It's as if President Lincoln was raised from the dead to act in this film.  Don't get me wrong--the sets are fantastic, the costumes are amazing, and you as the viewer are fully immersed the in the period.  All the acting is decent, but the film does plod along.  And there isn't really any suspense. But for Daniel Day-Louis alone, the film gets high marks from me.

Life of Pi
This film is visually stunning.  It's beyond beautiful to watch and the detail is fantastic.  Even the shots in India are wonderful to see.  The animals add an extra touch that I can appreciate.  And the story of a young boy going through a difficult journey into manhood can be appreciated by a large audience.  My boyfriend liked that the movie kept you thinking, and you could really pick your own ending.  But this film loses points for dragging on at certain points, which the same lavish attention to detail that makes it so beautiful in fact contributes to.  Still...lovely, and worth watching.  I say Ang Lee wins best director, certainly cinematography.

Django Unchained
If you've seen Inglorious Bastards, you've seen this film in one way or another.  However, I found it entertaining, well acted, and crisply directed.  Obviously, it is viscerally disgusting at some points, and if you have an easily upset stomach, stay far away.  But my favorite part about this film was the director's ability to completely invert the genre of a Western.  Jamie Foxx is a black, enslaved Dirty Harry.  And it's such fun to watch.

 Les Miserables
 Of course I was so thrilled to see this movie.  And actually I do think it is wonderful.  But at the end of the day it doesn't hold up against these other wonderful films.  There are some great actors, and some mediocre ones.  There are some fabulous scenes, and some less fabulous ones.  Anne Hathaway has completed locked up the Best Supporting Actress category, and anyone seeing her famous scene knows it is well-deserved.  And Hugh Jackman has some great moments.  But as a whole, the other films are better.  Sorry grandma!

Beasts of the Southern Wild
When ranking these last two, my least favorite, my boyfriend argued that while he disliked Amour, he was able to connect with the story line better.  Certainly this film is completely outside my ability to connect with it.  But the little girl's connection to her father, her troubled one with her mother, and her vivid imagination, ultimately made it more enjoyable for me.  I mean, it's really, really weird.  Not good weird.  Just weird.  If I was from New Orleans, then maybe.  But I'm not.  This movie's strange.  But at least I didn't want to hurl myself off a cliff afterwards.

This movie makes sitting next to the elderly uncomfortable.  There's little music, and I'm basically watching someone die for two hours.  I check my watch after 30 minutes, which for me is a really bad sign.  It's unbearable to watch, and yet somehow emotionless.  I will never watch this again.  I couldn't wait to leave.  They're both great actors, but I'm sorry.  Get me out of here!

That's it!  Just over an hour to showtime....let the race begin!

No comments:

Post a Comment