Somehow I have managed to see all of the best picture nominations for this year’s Oscars. I saw several on planes, and when I realized I was missing just “Tree of Life” I had to rent it through Netflix as I just couldn’t accept the void!
My thoughts, in general, are that it wasn’t the greatest year as none of these movies really blew me away, but here goes:
- The Artist – interesting, but I have to admit I got bored, and I do not have A.D.D., or anything similar. I am not jumping on the “me, too!” train that seems to be tooting its way around the world.
- Hugo – I didn’t really feel/get the message, and the movie was a bit too long. I also don’t understand why it is acceptable for people who are supposed to be from some other country (France, in this case) to speak English with an English accent and somehow make it believable that they are from [whatever] foreign country. Why didn’t they cast English speaking French people or have the actors speak with French accents? Has any once else ever noticed this? They do this all the time. Somehow an English accent = being from anywhere other than America. And what’s with two movies this year being about boys losing their fathers and puzzling over keys? (also Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close)
- Moneyball – I liked this movie for a variety of reasons but not sure it is ‘best picture’ worthy. I liked that it is a true story. I liked that it is based on statistics, due to my work experience and also as I can relate the approaches used in the movie to those that now seem to be seeping into interview process via the use of aptitude and personality tests. Jonah Hill was awesome, and I like Brad Pitt, too (and I am not a Brad Pitt groupie).
- Tree of Life – this is an unusual movie. It is a ‘meaning of life’ type of movie that reminded me of a mash-up of Stand by Me and something Al Gore might have produced.
- The Descendants – I didn’t realize this movie was going to be such a downer! The trailers make it look funny! I enjoyed it, and thought George Clooney was good, and getting to look at him made the movie a bit less depressing.
- Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close – I read the book years ago so was eager to see the movie. The book was strange yet oddly captivating. I thought the boy was awesome; in fact, I think he did the best acting job of all all the actors/actresses I have seen in any of these movies, particularly considering his age. He was found via the game show Jeopardy! It is a tear-jerker. I think we can all relate in some way or another to the pain of loss and not understanding why things happen but needing to find a way to come to terms with it and move on …. be prepared.
- War Horse – another emotional movie, at least if you are a horse/animal lover, I am not sure it would appeal so much to those that aren’t. It is a bit on the corny side, and Joey is a silly name for a horse. It is not a full-bodied enough saga for best picture.
- Midnight in Paris – I liked this one. It had a bit of a Cinderella undertone and I could relate to Owen Wilson’s restlessness. Carla Bruni also has a part in the movie, which I was unaware of, and I don’t know when they filmed but there is no hint of any baby Sarkozy, pre or post. I don’t know if Woody Allen will ever really be out of the doghouse, though, and (again) it don’t really think to was good enough for best picture.
- The Help – I enjoyed both the book and the movie. I thought the cast were all amazing. So, from an overall ensemble, original story, general enjoyment factor… this would be my personal pick.
…and there you have it!