Sunday, February 22, 2015

Oscars Lowdown 2015

It's Oscars day people! *runs headfirst into a door. This year, half of the movies nominated for the Best Picture Academy Award are based on true stories throughout history. Here's a list of the nominees. May the best film win. (As last year proved, it will not)

A look at the fictional contenders:
Birdman: Pretty damn good movie with a plot that was interesting and imaginative. This movie appears to be filmed in a single shot which was neat, but can also give you bouts of anxiety. Although it's not my favorite of the Best Picture nominees, it is the only one I would watch more than once. 4/5 stars

Boyhood: Remember how in Little Women grownup-Amy-actress was so physically different from little Kirsten Dunst that you wished she would have just died when she fell through that thin ice? To avoid that type of casting disappointment, this movie was filmed over a period of 11 years so that you could slowly see Ethan Hawke's gray hair accumulating. This film didn't really have anything going on. It slogs along to a shitty soundtrack, as the boring kid grows up to look like a hipster Peter Dinklage. It was kind of blah. 3/5 stars

The Grand Budapest Hotel: Not Wes Anderson's best. Not his worst. 3/5 stars

Whiplash: So good. I recommend this to everyone. Maybe because I was in high school band, maybe because I wasn't. 4/5 stars

A look at the historical contenders:
Image sources: Washington Post and Hollywood Reporter

American Sniper: Based on the memoir by United States Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, American Sniper is about the "deadliest marksman in U.S. military history" and his multiple tours to Iraq. This movie had a lot of missed opportunities. It didn't portray love, terror, PTSD, or grief all that well. And the ending (the scene that could have been the most powerful in the movie) happened off camera. 2/5 stars
Image sources: The Independent and Collider

The Imitation Game: Based on the biography of Alan Turing, the cryptanalyst who helped solve Germany's Enigma code during World War II and who was later prosecuted for homosexuality. Interesting story, lackluster movie. Yawn. 2/5 stars
Image sources: Finding Dulcinea and Madame Noire

Selma: This movie is based on the 1965 Selma to Montgomery, Alabama voting rights marches led by prominent members of the African-American civil rights movement. I mean, this movie was fine. It was kind of drab, and certain dialogue scenes were extended for way longer than they should have been. I tuned out often. 2/5 stars
Image sources: Mirror and Collider

The Theory of Everything: Adapted from Jane Hawking's memoir, The Theory of Everything deals with Stephen Hawking and Jane's relationship, his diagnosis of motor neuron disease, and his success in physics. Fuckin loved it. I don't know how I loved a romantic drama with physics-talk, but I did. 5/5 stars

I haven't seen Wild, Still Alice, or Into the Woods because I can't find them anywhere on the internet haven't been able to make it to the theatre. So, my picks for Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress exclude the nominees starring in those movies.

Best Picture: Birdman
Best Actor: Eddie Redmayne
Best Actress: Felicity Jones, but only because I haven't seen Still Alice
Best Supporting Actress: I hope they all lose
Best Supporting Actor: JK Simmons, but goddamn it, I love Edward Norton

1 comment:

  1. From what I read (e.g., the character in The Imitation Game is very different from the real-life Turing. What are we willing to give up to assure a good story?