Wow, I didn’t think this was going to be that good! I took a chance on this once, figuring that it was directed by Jason Reitman, so it couldn’t be that bad. I actually loved it. The screenplay is so witty and funny, that you are entertained from start to finish. Under all the humour is a very intelligent, sharp satire that really shows how much we can sell our souls, just to “pay the mortgage”. It keeps you laughing, but the sheer absurdity of the whole tobacco-pushing business really gets you to think. I’m surprised this didn’t get more love at the Oscars. This is fine work for someone’s directorial debut. Now I really understand all the hype about Jason Reitman.
Looks EPIC! I know this story has been exhausted, but with the Gladiator team of Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe in addition to the wonderful Cate Blanchett, you have the recipe for a great film. Can't wait!
What a well-made film. The cinematography, acting, score were all excellent.You could tell that it was adapted from a graphic novel, as the scenes and dialogue are so stylized. Tom Hanks and Jude Law (how did they make him look so scary?!) especially were great in their roles and the music combined with the cinematography made for one of the eeriest, most mysterious films I've ever seen. This movie will have you glued to the screen as it creates such suspense and anticipation. This movie is top notch, but don't just take my word for it, go check it out (if you haven't already).
I'm back on track folks, I once again have acess to a cinema, netflix-like dvd service, internet etc. So you can expect a new "Movie of the Week" every Monday(hopefully you still visit here every now and then). My pick this week is "Departures".
Departures (or Okuribito in Japan) is a hidden gem. The 2009 Academy Award winner for Best Foreign Language Film, this movie tells a beautiful story of a cellist who loses his job and decides to take up a position as an encoffiner, preparing the dead to be buried. This main character really carries the film, bringing a seemingly natural quirkiness to the role, while also portraying some really deep emotions at other times (as can be expected from someone dealing with death daily). This film is in the vein of typical East Asian cinema (excluding Bollywood of course) , with its subtle, slow pacing (think “Lust, Caution) so be prepared for that. Don’t worry about having to read the subtitles, this film is worth it. It has a good story, good acting and good music, so take a break from the typical Hollywood fare and check out “Departures”.
Well, that’s a wrap folks. What an anti-climax for “Avatar”! After all the hype, it only managed to walk away with 3 Oscars, while rival “The Hurt Locker” picked up a whopping 6. I realized that I forgot to make my predictions, but the awards went mostly as expected. The big surprises for me were:
“The Hurt Locker” winning Best Picture (couldn’t quite imagine such a low-grossing film winning the big one)
“Precious” beating “Up in the Air” for Best Adapted Screenplay.
“The Hurt Locker” preventing an “Avatar” sweep in the more technical categories.
General Thoughts on the ceremony: - It was quite evident that Avatar wasn’t going to win, pretty much everyone who went on stage had a wisecrack about the film and it was clear that “Avatar” didn’t have much respect within the Academy. - We love you on So You Think You Can Dance, but Adam Shankman, you did a poor job producing the Oscars. In particular, the dancing to the nominees for Original Score was a hot mess. As the good people at Awards Daily described it, the music was great, the dancing was great, but together not so much. It didn’t make sense at all to have street dancers with the music from films like “Up” and “Sherlock Holmes”. Bring back the Orginal Song performances! - The show was definitely better last year (which I thought was one of the best Oscar ceremonies in recent history), it had such a classy feel to it. This year’s ceremony had a somewhat cheap Vegas feel to it.
Looking back, I am still unsure of what I feel about the 10-nominee situation. Although I am glad that it allowed great movies like “District 9” to get in, I also think that it also cast the net a bit too far in allowing “The Blind Side” to get nominated. The Best Picture nominees this year however, were some of the most compelling and diverse films I have seen in recent Oscar races. Let’s go 2010!
There has been a huge scandal in the Oscar race with one of the producers of "The Hurt Locker" sending a mass email, basically begging members to vote for "the small, indie film" rather than "the $500 million film". This was obviously a violation of the rules and the Academy has decided to ban the producer (Nicolas Chatrier) from attending the Oscar ceremony. Will this be enough to deter "The Hurt Locker" from winning the big prize on Oscar night? Only time will tell.
Vanity Fair recently released its annual Hollywood issue highlighting the next "it" girls (pictured above). However, they didn't include Oscar nominee Gabby Sidibe, which obviously caused some minor controversy. Call me mean, but they were obviously going a specific theme with their cover shoot (i.e skinny white girls) so she would have probably felt uncomfortable anyway.
Complete crap. How did this get such good reviews?! This is the worst movie I’ve seen in a long while. What kind of sick, twisted mind comes up with a movie like this? It was not funny at all. I am horrified that the cute kid from "Spy Kids" could say such disgusting things. I found this movie to be in very bad taste and it was torture for me to watch the whole thing. I sat through it anyway, in the hope that it would get better. It didn’t. Seriously, this should have been titled “World’s Worst Movie”.