Monday, January 10, 2011
MOVIE OF THE WEEK/OSCAR WATCH: The Fighter
"The Fighter" is a complete knockout. I'm so pleased that this passion project of Mark Wahlberg was made. This could really be a dark horse in this Oscar race. The casting was just perfect. This is a real actor's film. Everyone (even the crazy sisters) was magnificent in their roles. Amy Adams showed her range, straying away from her usual cutesy, barbie doll persona. Melissa Leo was also really good as the overbearing mother and could definitely win the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. Christian Bale gave yet another committed performance and also stands a good chance of a win. No matter how detrimental their tight grip on Micky was, you could still see the immense love they all had for him and each other. I must single out Mark Wahlberg though, since nobody seems to be talking about him. I thought he was equally Oscar-worthy in his role. All the pressure he felt from all corners was just so evident in his face. This is a compelling, earnest drama but there were even some scenes that had me rolling with laughter. David O'Rusell should definitely get a Best Director nomination for his work here.
This completes my viewing of the front-runners for Best Picture (except for maybe "Blue Valentine") and I salute this year's filmmakers. Amazingly, I gave each film a 5-star rating (except "The Town" which I "4-starred"). Among them, "Inception", "The Social Network", "Black Swan" and now "The Fighter" really stood out in my mind. I definitely couldn't say that last year and it's easy to understand why there is such a strong consensus among the major awards groups about the 10 or 11 top movies. Now let's start hearing some acceptance speeches!