Monday, October 25, 2010

MOVIE OF THE WEEK: Pride and Prejudice

This film was a surprisingly fresh take on the Jane Austen classic. The cinematography was spectacular, the directing was creative, the acting was great (Keira Knightly fully deserved her Oscar nom) and it was even quite funny. A thoroughly enjoyable adaptation of such great source material.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

OSCAR WATCH: How To Train Your Dragon

First of all, I completely disagree that this movie should be on "Oscar Watch". Yes, it's highly entertaining like a good animated film should be, but Oscar calibre? I think not. There is no way this is beating "Toy Story 3), for a Best Picture nomination and there certainly won't be 2 animated films nominated for Best Picture (they have an animated film category for a reason). Good film though, worth renting.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

COMING SOON: For Colored Girls

This one has so much potential, but I feel like it has some serious issues with it. Firstly, it was directed by Tyler Perry. Anyone familiar with his films knows that they are pretty bad and formulaic. Why couldn't they just leave him as producer (which he is great at, since his movies always make serious bank)? Can you imagine Oscar voters checking off a movie attached to Tyler Perry's name? Another issue for me is the title (full title is "For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf"). Who even uses the term 'colored' anymore? I feel like the white upper-crust film community will feel very uncomfortable talking about 'colored girls'. I do think this film could churn out a Best Lead or Supporting Actress nomination or two. To be frank, this year is a very white Oscar race and a half-decent performance and a good publicity team should be enough. I really hope this doesn't flop. Opens November 5th.

OSCAR WATCH: Winter's Bone

It’s so great that we have a whole other independent film industry running alongside Hollywood. Films like “Frozen River”, “Fargo” and now “Winter’s Bone” remind us that there is a major cross-section of the US that is worlds apart from the glitz and glamour that typical Hollywood movies tend to focus on. This was the epitome of an indie film, with a simple story and most importantly, very realistic. Surprisingly, I was quite engaged with this film, unlike my experiences into other monotone, slow-paced indie movies. There has been much Oscar buzz surrounding this film, but imho this has little chance for the exact qualities highlighted above. Firstly, I think the movie was too simple for it to stand out against the wide selection of films this year, so I highly doubt it will get into the Best Picture game. Also, the “experts” say that Jennifer Lawrence is one of the top contenders for Best Actress, but once again, I don’t think her performance was “showy” enough for her to make the cut. This is a competitive year for best actress and while she did a great job, I can’t see her edging out the host of big names floating around (Nicole Kidman, Natalie Portman, Diane Lane, Hilary Swank etc.). Overall, there wasn’t anything wrong with the movie, on the contrary, it was damn good. I do feel however that leads itself to be easily forgotten (like "The Messenger" and "Crazy Heart" last year) among the plethora of good films this year.

Monday, October 18, 2010


"Boy A" is a relatively unknown film, but it's quite good. It's quite heavy as it centers around a young man newly released from prison for a murder he committed as a child. The film is anchored by a superb lead perfomance by Andrew Garfield as said young man. You couldn't help but feel sorry for him throughout the film. Watch out for this kid, with 2 big roles this year (The Social Network and Never Let Me Go) in addition to notching the role of Peter Parker in Spiderman reboot, he's the next big thing!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

MOVIE OF THE WEEK: Animal Kingdom

"Animal Kingdom" is a must-see, it is completely engaging from start to finish. From the first scene I knew this was going to be a good movie. Jacki Weaver deserves all the Oscar buzz for her portrayal as the matriarch of this Australian criminal family. She had such a scary calmness in the role, it was quite discomforting. I also thought Ben Mendelsohn was superb in his role. I actually thought the film was too short, in particular there was an important development in the end that I felt should have been shown. But I guess "more is less". At the end I was begging for more, I highly recommend this film.

Friday, October 8, 2010

COMING SOON: The Oscar Slate (lots of new trailers!)

Well, we are over the hump of the summer movies and now we get down to the "nitty-gritty". It's Oscar season and with the 10-nominee format it's as busy as ever. Just to illustrate how important the timing of movies is, "Wall Street 2" was all set to be released in April, but after it got good reviews at Cannes, it got moved to September. I've already seen 2 of the big players (Toy Story 3 and Inception) and they are looking pretty solid. Also, "The Kids Are All Right" and Winter's Bone have already opened to rave reviews. Still not convinced Shutter Island will make the cut, but it's also one to watch Here's the full smorgasbord of what's to come in the following months(in order of release date):