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Oscar Sunday


Today is Oscar Sunday, but I’m not particularly excited this year. I’ll watch the ceremony, as I always do, but I just don’t care about most of the nominees. I finally saw The Artist, and while it’s very well done and charming, I found it too precious for my taste. I think it’s going to win Best Picture, but I’m just not inspired to make other predictions this year.

The Artist was one of nine movies that I watched on the plane to/from Paris. I couldn’t sleep on the second flight, so I just barreled through and kept going. Airplane movies are an eclectic selection for me, as I alternate between choosing acclaimed features and testing out mindless crap.

Here’s what I watched, in order, with a two-cent review of each:

The Artist – Impressive acting and a delightful love-letter to old Hollywood, but not particularly substantial.

The Adventures of Tintin – Less creepy-looking than I expected, and fun, but the plot felt like an adventure-based videogame.

Friends with Benefits – I enjoyed this movie. It’s completely predictable, but I liked the stars together. I admit, I love Justin Timberlake. He’s got excellent comic timing.

Crazy, Stupid, Love – I caught the second act of this one before we landed, and nothing about it made me want to finish watching it later. I have a soft spot for Emma Stone, and Steve Carell was appealing, but Julianne Moore was annoying, and the story didn’t grab me. Plus, I keep wanting to grammar-correct the title and excise that extra comma.

Melancholia – Not the kind of movie best seen on a tiny screen, but I wanted to give it a test run. I would definitely watch it again in a better setting and format. It shares some similarities with The Tree of Life, but I think the narrative holds up better.

In Time – A hokey sci-fi thriller with an interesting premise. I watched the whole thing, but I can’t recommend it. My threshold for sci-fi flops is pretty high, but the Bonnie-and-Clyde romance in this flick is terrible.

Moneyball – This made me want to start watching baseball again. A nice, understated performance from Pitt.

Anonymous – This was a total crock from a factual standpoint, but really entertaining. Not as sexy/bloody as The Tudors, and more far-fetched than Elizabeth, but still fun if you like that period in history and just treat the plot as complete fiction. A darker cousin of Shakespeare in Love.

Drive – Stylistically interesting and dramatically engaging, but the more I watched of it, the more things bothered me about the main characters. Still, it looks and feels unique enough to be worth recommending.

We barley watched any television on our trip, but I also caught foreign versions of The Fellowship of the Ring (Flemish) and High Plains Drifter (French), which had an alternate ending that took me completely by surprise. Amazing what changing just a few select words can do to the entire premise of a film. I wouldn’t spoil it for those who haven’t seen HPD, but if you’re familiar with Eastwood‘s vengeance Western, let’s just say that it’s missing the “twist” at the end.


From → Movies, Travel

One Comment
  1. I finally just saw “The Artist” today, and I agree with you. It was lovely, and as a big fan of the OSS-117 movies I loved see the leads together again, but I don’t get all the fuss. It’s just a “make you grin” movie. I also thought Peppy acted too modern to be a 1930s girl. Bejo needed to watch more old movies!

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