Saturday, January 19, 2013

Oscar Season

I am a huge movie buff and I love this time of year when Oscar nominations are announced and I have over a month to catch up on nominated movies.  Here are this year's nominees:

Beasts of the Southern Wild
Django Unchained
Les Misérables
Life of Pi
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty

Silver Linings Playbook - I liked this movie a lot but I can understand that some people might be uncomfortable watching it.  It has pretty realistic depictions of manic episodes so if mental illness is a difficult subject for you, this isn't the movie for you.  I love the director, David O. Russell (the guy who did The Fighter, I Heart Huckabees etc).  Also, is it possible to have a girl boner for an actress?  Jennifer Lawrence is simply astounding in this.  To give you an example of how great she is, she owns a scene with De Niro!  Geez, this chick is only 22.  How is she this good?  Bradley Cooper was excellent too but his character is a difficult balance between humorous mental illness to scare the crap out of your chemical imbalance.

Argo - my main feeling after watching this is that I really miss the 1970's.  I want to have boxy cars, phones with long cords, hairy men, and huge eyeglasses again.  The avocado, oranges, synthetics, and crazy patterns just are "home" for me.  So huge kudos on set design.  The story and acting are awesome.  It is truly an ensemble piece no huge star eating up all the lines or scenes.  I went through the whole range of human emotions watching it.  Also, how cool is Canada to help us out that way?  Little side note,  Ben cast a former castmate from Dazed and Confused in the movie.

Django Unchained - was very entertaining and made me want to study a lot more about slavery in America.  Christoph Waltz is really excellent here.  I do have to say that the soundtrack is AMAZING! Tarantino really has a great ear for music in his movies.

Zero Dark Thirty - wow, wow, and wow.  This movie made me think of that Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times."  Jessica Chastain completely inhabits her character and I asked myself after [spoiler alert] Bin Laden was killed, "What is she going to do now?"  The torture scenes were horrible but there has been worse scenes on 24 or in torture porn horror movies.  I guess it's not the level of gore, it's the fact that what we are seeing did actually happen is disturbing.

Man, what an embarrassment of riches, huh?  There has been a great cinema renaissance if there are so many high quality films to choose from.

No comments: