Alright, I know it has been a while since I wrote my last review, but here I am. The Oscars are almost here, and it is time to put in my two cents on what I have seen. Though I have not seen every nominated movie, I can tell you what my favorites are.
“Silver Linings Playbook” is great. I never was a huge Bradley Cooper fan; I think I just did not give him a chance with the “Hangover” movies and “The A-Team,” but Bradley rips. Everyone in that movie is great. The story is good, dealing with bipolar disorder, family problems, and love-life problems. Everyone (Jennifer Lawrence, Robert De Niro, Chris Tucker) is really believable, and David O. Russell (“Three Kings,” “I Heart Huckabees,” “The Fighter”) did a great job directing.
David’s movies are awesome because they are all different from one another. The way his characters talk and react to each other makes the movies feel like you are watching real people in documentaries. Very believable characters. I don’t think that this movie should win at the Oscars, but I did enjoy it. There is a scene with Robert and Bradley that got me pretty choked up, but I am also the asshole that cried when I first saw Arnold slowly sinking into the hot melted steel at the end of “Terminator 2.” “Now I know why you humans cry.”
“Zero Dark Thirty” is alright, and it is based on the true events that went down when tracking down Osama bin Laden. If you think it is going to be a non-stop action movie, you are wrong, but it does have its moments. There are some tense scenes, explosions, and torture sequences. I did not like the dialogue that much. The acting is good, but when you have Jessica Chastain in a conference room with the head of CIA, the CIA asks who found Bin Laden, and she says “I’m the motherfucker that found him,” it does not strike me as believable dialogue. I recommend renting “Z.D.T.” I don’t think that it should win at the Oscars.
“Les Miserables” is pretty good. I am a singer myself, but I have never enjoyed musicals (Exception: Trey Parker’s “Cannibal! The Musical”). Everyone was amazed at “Moulin Rouge” and “Across the Universe,” but I fell asleep in both.
I am not saying that they are terrible movies or that the acting is bad. Musicals are not my thing. However, I stayed awake for the whole two-and-a-half hours of “Les Mis.” Hugh Jackman is incredible. That guy is a chameleon. Not once did I think that Wolverine claws were going to burst out of his knuckles while he was singing. Thumbs up Hugh. Thumbs up Anne Hathaway as well. Hugh and Anne carry you through the movie not just with superb acting, but with their vocals which are ridiculously impressive.
Russell Crowe is in “Les Mizzy” as well, but his voice is annoying and monotone. I really like Russell in other films, but every time he was on the screen (in “Les Mis”) I could not wait for him to get off of the screen. This was not a good choice for Russell. Sacha Baron Cohen (“Bruno,” “Borat”) is also in it. So good. That guy can not go wrong. Great singing, great acting.
Helena Bonham Carter (“Fight Club,” “The King’s Speech”) plays Sacha’s wife. She is another actress that can’t do any wrong in my opinion. Putting both of those actors together on screen was gold. I think both of their characters made up for where Crowe was lacking. I think that Hugh and Anne might win this year. Great work.
“Argo fuck yourself.” That is said throughout the film. I loved “Argo.” Ben Affleck directed and stars in this, and he did a fantastic job. The cast is great (John Goodman, Alan Arkin, Bryan Cranston), the dialogue was good, and it kept me engaged. The movie has a good flow of suspense, drama, and comedy. I won’t give anything away, but the end scene at the airport had me on my toes. Shit was intense. Argo is definitely a contender for “Best Picture.” Ben Affleck has grown on me. Homie has got talent.
Another contender for “Best Picture” would have to be “Beasts of the Southern Wild.” Wow dude. For a first time director, Benh Zeitlin has his shit together. Quvenzhané Wallis, the 5-year-old actress that he cast as the lead, is incredible. The last time I was blown away by a kid actress (not blown by one) was when I saw Dakota Fanning in “I Am Sam.”
“Beasts of the Southern Wild” is almost like a documentary, the way it flows, and the way it was filmed. It was shot in the South (somewhere in the bayou), and it is about Quvenzhané Wallis’s character Hushpuppy trying to survive a storm, and life in general. There are some fantasy sequences with the “Beasts” that are pretty trippy. If “Beasts of the Southern Wild” doesn’t win for “Best Picture,” Quvenzhané should win for “Best Actress in a Leading Role.”
If you smoke weed, do it before watching “Life of Pi.” This is not just because of director Ang Lee’s dreamy sky and sea sequences, but also because the story is heavy/sad. You might need some Kush to cope.
Visually, “Life of Pi” takes the cake. The story is amazing, but I could watch the movie with the sound off and still get lost in the scenes. Pi is the name of the main character of the film. He has to survive on a lifeboat at sea and share it with a Bengal tiger that wants him as breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Not only that, but there are sharks, storms, whales, and hunger standing in his way of survival.
I put seeing this movie off for a while, and I am so glad that I finally watched it. Suraj Sharma is a newcomer actor that plays Pi when he is a boy. For his first big epic movie, he did good work. I think Suraj is the man. There are scenes that go back to the 50’s and 60’s that were kick-ass with the costumes, hair, cars, etc. Ang Lee nailed it. I was really worried that the C.G.I./computer graphics would get annoying or look stupid, but it was done very well. If Ang Lee wins “Best Picture” I will not be disappointed.
“Django Unchained” is my favorite from what I have seen of the movies nominated. Quentin Tarantino (writer/director) owns. He always has. I like some of his movies better than others, but I am going to say that Django is my new favorite. I love how he can make me laugh out loud for one moment, cringe the next, gross me out, and then have me leave the theater feeling like I just ate the best burrito ever.
The acting is great, although Quentin makes a cameo for a short bit and he has the worst accent and acting of all time. It is great because even though he is among so many award-winning actors, he still throws himself in for a cameo, and you can tell it is for his fans and for his own shits and giggles. It was a treat. Jamie Foxx (Django) is awesome. What a cool lead role for him. The cast is phenomenal, Leo DeCaprio, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson, Christoph Waltz…I mean, when you read that Quentin has a new film, it is always exciting to see who he gets to play his bad-ass and fucked up characters. “Django Unchained” has action, romance, comedy, gore, great music, and every shot looks like a photograph. I don’t know who could talk shit on this movie, and if you do, you’re an idiot.
Here is what I think.
Best Director: Quentin Tarantino (“Django”)
Best Actress in a leading role: Quvenzhané Wallis (“Beasts of the Southern Wild”) or Anne Hathaway (“Les Miserables”)
Best Actor in a leading role: Jamie Foxx (“Django”) or Hugh Jackman (“Les Miserables”)
Best Picture: “Argo,” “Life of Pi” or “Django”
I would be happy with any of these. I didn’t get a chance to see “Lincoln,” “Amour,” or “The Impossible” yet, but time and money don’t grow on trees, so Argo Fuck Yourself.
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