Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Big Five

I can't believe the Academy Awards are this Sunday. Yes, I'm one of the geeks who cared that the writer's strike ended soon enough to have my real Oscars ceremony.

I have seen all five nominees for Best Motion Picture of the Year. Here is my own ranking in terms of deservedness, and, yes, the spacing is there to make a point:

1. JUNO
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2. NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
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3. MICHAEL CLAYTON
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4. THERE WILL BE BLOOD
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5. ATONEMENT

It's my personal opinion that ATONEMENT doesn't deserve to be in the mix. I thought it was a very poorly executed film that wasn't focused. I want to go on record as saying that I simply cannot understand how the Academy could nominate ATONEMENT over INTO THE WILD. I feel very strongly that INTO THE WILD should have a slot. Indeed, I would have given it a spot over MICHAEL CLAYTON, THERE WILL BE BLOOD, and ATONEMENT.

A word about THERE WILL BE BLOOD. I adore Paul Thomas Anderson and part of me expected to come out of that film blown-away saying, "Best film of the year." Oddly, I feel the same way about THERE WILL BE BLOOD as I did about Martin Scorsese's 2002 Best Picture nomination GANG'S OF NEW YORK: It's a movie I don't really care for, but it contains one of the greatest acting performances I have ever seen. Daniel Day-Lewis is an unexplainable freak of nature. It is beyond my comprehension that somebody voted Adrien Brody over Daniel Day-Lewis then as it's impossible for me to imagine anybody else winning the acting category this year. That said, as much as I adore Daniel Day-Lewis and PTA, the movie wasn't that good.

MICHAEL CLAYTON is a pretty good film. I would give it 3 or maybe even three-and-a-half stars out of five. It was a good night at the movies.

NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN is a fantastic movie. It's one that got under my skin and made me want to discuss it with somebody. It almost reminded me of a Stanley Kubrick film with it's bleak take on the human predicament. It is the Coen Brothers at their finest. I can totally see it being up for the top slot.

However, like I said in my post yesterday, and like I said in an older post, Oscar Nominations, I truly feel that JUNO is not only the best picture of the year, it is also my favorite. I really really really hope it wins the top award. It's the reason I am really excited about the Oscars this year.

You'd have to go back all the way to the grand string of years 1993-1994-1995 to mark the last time that my own personal favorite film of the year was even up for a Best Picture Oscar. That was a nice run with SCHINDLER'S LIST, QUIZ SHOW, and BRAVEHEART respectively.

Bottom line? Having seen all five of them again this year, I'm pulling for the underdog! We'll find out this Sunday.

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4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have not seen ANY of them. I am sure I will see all of them, but after Sunday. I will start with JUNO.

Sharon

3:44 PM  
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