All of us might wish at times that we lived in a more tranquil world, but we don't. And if our times are difficult and perplexing, so are they challenging and filled with opportunity.

Robert Kennedy

Monday, January 21, 2013

You oughta be in pictures...

It's nice living in a culture/geographical location that celebrates winter. Snow is pretty. And you put on your boots and your coat and your hat and your scarf and coffee and hot chocolate taste a million times better and it's cozy and you wear pajama pants at night and it's nice. Then...a week later, I'm OVER IT!!!!!!! I moved to Southern California from Pennsylvania for a reason and this was it. Winter was meant to be spent on the beach and wearing sweaters instead of winter jackets and boots are fashionable not necessary. 
It's been snowing a lot here, much more than last winter. The things about this country is that if it's too cold, people don't leave their house. It's really expensive to heat places when it's cold so they just stay home. Needless to say, I've been cooped up in my apartment since about the 2nd week of December. 
The positive spin is that I have been doing nothing but watching movies. And since it is Oscar season, it ain't a bad gig! Instead of waking up at the crack of dawn to watch the Oscar nominations (as I do in CA every year) they air hear at 3:30pm which is definitely a perk. Since I'm an award show junkie, this is truly the season.
As far as best pictures, I think the Oscars got it pretty right. I am glad they expanded the category from 5 because sometimes in a year there are too many to not be recognized. However, if they're going to expand the Best Picture category...why not expand the Best Director category? Snubbing Tarantino, Affleck, Hooper and Bigelow is just plain wrong. WRONG, I tell you!
So, my picks for Oscar:
Original Screenplay - I'm biased because Tarantino is a demi-God to me and he just may take it, but I feel like Zero Dark Thirty boy, Mark Boal may take it.
Adapted Screenplay - TOTALLY rooting for Chris Terrio for Argo but It will probably go to Kushner for Lincoln.
Best Supporting Actress - Kind of a lock on Annie. And that's okay. I think if anyone spoils the lock it will be Sally Field. 
Best Documentary - I've seen 3 out of the 5 nominees. Going with what I've seen, Searching for Sugar Man is my favorite. But I think The Invisible War is the most important.
Best Supporting Actor - Totally rooting for Christoph Waltz. He is a force to be reckoned with. And as a friend of mine said "is there anything better than Quentin Tarantino's words coming out of Christoph Waltz's mouth?"* Agreed! BUT, I think Tommy Lee Jones or Philip Seymour Hoffman may sneak in and steal it. Tough category. All perfect performances.
Best Actress - I think Jessica Chastain has it 80% locked although I think she has the weakest performance in the category. Naomi Watts is incredible in the Impossible. I think I'm rooting for JLaw to be the spoiler of the evening.
Best Actor - Let's talk about who would win if Daniel Day Lewis didn't exist. I have a feeling it would go to Hugh Jackman, justifiably, but again, tough category. All great performances. And possibly THE best looking category ever? Can I get an 'Amen?' But regarding DDL, is it possible that one of the greatest actors ever is playing one of the greatest Presidents ever directed by one of the greatest directors ever? I mean, did that really happen? 
Best Director - Ugh, I'm still pissed about the Affleck snub. But I'm sure this will go to Spielberg.
Best Picture - I want Argo or Django Unchained to win so bad! I think Argo's got a shot to be a huge spoiler and an Argo eff yourself to the academy. I will cheer if that happens...but I think it will go to Lincoln. And it's not that Lincoln was a bad movie, it wasn't. It was a sweeping epic just like the Academy loves but in a year that produced Argo and just wasn't the best movie. But the Academy gets it wrong...a lot. I mean in looking back, was Forrest Gump REALLY the best picture that year? In a year that produced Pulp Fiction and The Shawshank Redemption? Uh no.

Other awards that should be given out IMHO:

The "Rip your heart out" award - Amour. You will need to lie in a dark room in the fetal position for a while after this one.
The "Vomit scene that literally almost made me vomit" award - Naomi Watts in The Impossible.
The "I should be riveted but Homeland is way better"award - Zero Dark Thirty. I will again give credit to my friend* for pointing out that films like this are so story driven as they're based on actual events that the characters fall by the wayside. And since I knew the outcome...I'm sure I"m alone on this, but I was a little bored. 
The "Holy shit, DeNiro is FINALLY delivering again" award - Silver Linings Playbook.
The "Holy shit, Bradley Cooper is actually a really good actor" award - Silver Linings Playbook.

The "This movie deserves way more attention than it got" award - Looper
The "This should annoy me with its quirkiness but I actually love it" award - Moonrise Kingdom
The "Are they writing about me in High School?" award - Perks of Being a Wallflower
The "I cannot believe this actually happened/happens" award - West of Memphis, The Invisible War, The Imposter, The Impossible.
The "oh there ARE still good people in the world, thank goodness" award - Craigslist Joe
The "I'm completely ashamed at how hard I laughed at this movie" award - That's My Boy

The "I'm a little embarrassed at how much I LOVED this movie" award - Pitch Perfect, Rock of Ages.
The "Shut up, Spike Lee, you're just jealous" award - Django Unchained
The "Damn, that kicked my ASS!" award - Argo, Django Unchained, Silver Linings Playbook
The "I feel like I should like this so much more than I do" award - Lincoln, Zero Dark Thirty
The "in case I didn't make it clear, these are my two favorites of the year" award - Django Unchained, Argo. 

With a month to go until the Oscars, I have only to see The Master and Les Miserables. I have putting off Les Miserables because I refuse to watch it on my computer and it doesn't open in Romania until the end of the month. I have heard pretty much every compliment and criticism that I care to hear and yet I am still looking forward to seeing it. In the meantime, I wish everybody would just shut up. I don't know why "I don't want to hear about it" signifies someone to say "OK, well let me just say this..." Ugh!
Sigh...I need to get out of the house.

*Aforementioned friend is one Christopher Cadena. He's way smarter than I am.


  1. Thanks for the movie suggestions Jenn, as I continue to lurk in my lair waiting for some sign of life from my program managers....I've seen about 3/4 of these but was avoiding ARGO and ZERO Dark Thirty as - like you said - I knew the outcome already (hate when that happens.) But if you say they're worth a watch....

  2. There are just some titles of blogs that need to read with an affected 40's radio voice:)