Awards

Fall Movie Season 2017

2017 has been DRY. I have been absolutely PARCHED for new, quality movies to see. Dunkirk and Bladerunner 2049 quenched my thirst temporarily, but now that November is here, it’s time for the flood of the years’ best films to be released. (I wonder how far I can take this analogy?) Here’s the forecast for interesting movie releases in 2017.

Lady Bird

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Release date: Nov. 3
Directed by: Greta Gerwig
Written by: Greta Gerwig
Starring: Saoirse Ronan, Odeya Rush, Kathryn Newton, Laurie Metcalf
Summary: “The adventures of a young woman living in Northern California for a year.”

Why I’m interested: Ultimately, this could be a quirky popcorn film, and nothing more, but Greta Gerwig has had plenty of buzz for her work on screen in the last few years and Saoirse Ronan is an absolute delight, so I think it will be worth checking out.

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What the hell just happened?

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La La Land was just announced as the Best Picture winner only to have the entire crew of cast and producers come on stage and be interrupted to announce that Moonlight was actually the Best Picture winner. Moonlight was ABSOLUTELY the right choice, so I am thrilled that it won, the Academy got this VERY right.

I’m trying to assume that this was just an honest mistake, not a plug for controversy it talk show fodder. HOWEVER if it was orchestrated by the producers, I am IRATE. For a few reasons.

That is a TERRIBLE position to put Warren Beatty and everyone from La La Land in. They were in the middle of making their acceptance speech when they were told they didn’t win. But the more EGREGIOUS result here is that Moonlight doesn’t get it’s due. At a volatile time for race relations in America a film with a unique perspective on growing up black in a poor Miami neighborhood wins Best Picture but we have to give it to La La Land for a few minutes first!? NO ONE heard Barry Jenkins’ message when he accepted the Best Picture award because everyone was absorbed in the shock of the moment. No one will talk about the excellent film that won Best Picture tomorrow morning, it will be about the on-air mistakes made. So the Oscars have the opportunity to let a film made by people who are traditionally underrepresented in he industry take the stage and let their message be heard but now it’s clouded by this controversy.

Moonlight is a beautiful film and deserved it’s chance in the spotlight and not in the shadow of La La Land.

And the cast and crew of La La Land are insanely talented. They deserved a much more dignified loss.

I really want to believe this was an honest mistake.
But if it wasn’t… 😡

Oscar Predictions: Best Picture

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This my final Oscar prediction! Check out parts 1, 2, and 3 for my predictions in the other Oscar categories.

Best Picture
Arrival
Fences
Hacksaw Ridge
Hell or High Water
Hidden Figures
La La Land
Lion
Manchester by the Sea
Moonlight
moonlight7Will Win: La La Land
Could Win: Moonlight
Should Win: Moonlight
It’s taken me a long time to decide on this one, but I think this award really should go to Moonlight. Best Picture should go to the film that’s the best all-around, not one with only spectacular elements. Those elements need to weave together well and that’s exactly what Moonlight does. However, the Academy will not agree with me. La La Land is sure to win Best Picture. There’s a lot of different reasons why, but ultimately I think its a little bit about narcissism. In order to work in the arts you have to be just a little narcissistic to have the audacity to believe what you do (writing/acting/directing/cinematography) is something that other people should see. So, Hollywood loves itself and it will likely reward La La Land with Best Picture because they relate to that story.

When I first saw La La Land I was a little worried that I was going to be one of very few people that weren’t super high on this movie. However, there has been a very vocal backlash that I’m a little surprised at. La La Land isn’t a bad movie. It is a brilliantly executed film that was a little light and fluffy. Because of everything that’s gone on in the last year politically, socially, etc., La La Land seems very tone deaf. It’s hard to take an artists struggle to be recognized seriously when one of your neighbors is at risk for being deported. But that’s not La La Land‘s fault. This was a film long in the making and it probably unfairly suffers from bad timing.

The Oscars are TONIGHT on ABC at 7:30 (CT). I’ll be live tweeting during the event! Check out parts one, two and three of my predictions!

Oscar Predictions: Part 3

<> on October 19, 2009 in Santa Clarita, California.

Part 3 of my Oscar predictions. You can read part 1 here, part 2 here and my Best Picture pick. This post includes the following categories:

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Oscar Predictions: Part 2

Part 2 of my Oscar predictions. You can read part 1 here, part 3 here and my Best Picture pick. This post includes the following categories:

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Oscar Predictions: Part 1

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It’s Oscar Day! This is part one of three of my Oscar predictions. This post features:

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Review: Lemonade

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I don’t know what I was doing in April of last year that I thought was more valuable than indulging in Lemonade, but I was a fool. A silly, silly fool.

I’ve always appreciated Beyonce: she’s crazy talented and smart, but I’ve never really been one to worship her like she’s freaking Mother Mary.

Sweet Saint Bey, please forgive me for my sins.

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Review: Hell or High Water

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Directed by: David Mackenzie
Written by: Taylor Sheridan
Starring: Chris Pine, Ben Foster, Jeff Bridges

Summary: Two brothers execute an elaborate plan to rob banks in Texas in an effort to keep the ranch their recently departed mother owned. A cop on the eve of his retirement works with his partner to catch them.

Hell or High Water snuck by everyone over the summer. I believe this was in theaters around August and just about nobody saw it, including me. (more…)

Review: Hacksaw Ridge

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Directed by: Mel Gibson
Written by: Robert Schenkkan and Andrew Knight
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey

Summary: Desmond Doss enlists in the army as a conscientious objector in World War II. Despite doubt from his officers and fellow soldiers, Doss proves to be a selfless, devoted medic and saves the lives of dozens of men at Hacksaw Ridge during the Battle of Okinawa.

Hacksaw Ridge is like sandwich made with premium deli meat that is slapped between two pieces of Wonder bread. The beginning and ending of this film are just empty calories, even cringe-worthy at times. But what happens in the middle is high-quality filmmaking rich with sustenance and flavor that lingers.  (more…)

Best Picture nominees: Where are they most popular?

The New York Times just published a fascinating piece on how different counties in America have responded to each of the Best Picture nominees this year. With 2016 proving that our geographic location plays a huge part in our perceptions of the world, this approach to understanding public enthusiasm (or lack-there-of) for each nominated film is very interesting.

Personal note: I couldn’t help but notice how Dane County (Madison, Wis.) sticks out  in the map of which counties liked Moonlight. This is one of those moments where I am very proud of where I live!

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