Go Watch a Movie: Braveheart

January 15, 2012 § Leave a comment

Way back in the dark ages when Mel Gibson wasn’t walking the streets of Hollywood like a crazy drunk, he was actually a little decent in movies. Based on a true story, this movie tells the story of Scotland’s freedom from and triumph over Britain. Everything about this film gets me excited. The music, the filming, the writing. It’s all so liberating and motivating. It’s a beautiful story of a man’s love for his wife and nation.

The passion and determination William Wallace (Mel Gibson) has for his country’s people is inspiring and heartbreaking. This movie will bring you to tears I promise you.


In other news, my sincere apologies for no post on the People’s Choice Awards. It sucked so badly that I couldn’t bring myself to talk about it. However, tonight’s event is much larger and I will have plenty to say afterward I’m sure.



Go Watch a Movie: LOTR: The Return of the King and more Oscar’s fun

January 10, 2012 § Leave a comment

First, to all of you out there making bets that I wouldn’t post on time: hand over the cash, I’m giving you a review!

Second, People’s Choice Awards is on tomorrow night 9pm ET on CBS. Don’t miss it. And after you watch it you’re going to post your thoughts on this blog entry.  Deal? Excellent.

And now, the beginning of the best picture reviews. Beginning with 2003’s winner: Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. To my knowledge you have not had the privilege of seeing my dorky side. But after this you’ll be able to see that I’m much cooler than you thought. And by cooler I mean kind of a nerd.

This movie, the only LOTR that won a best picture was fantastic. It’s been quite some time since I’ve seen it so you’ll have to forgive me some of the details. The cinematography and effects in this film are absolutely unreal. Something you can only understand by watching it.  The story line is gripping, emotional, shows incredible camaraderie and heart. In its year, this movie was nominated for 11 awards at the Oscar’s. And won every. single. one. Still don’t want to watch it? Orlando Bloom is a total dreamboat. Yeah I’m not a fan either. But, there’s a plethora of attractive men to look at it. Don’t knock the fantasy genre till you watch it. This is the kind of movie you just can’t hate.

In other 2003 Oscar news, Billy Crystal was hosting for the 8th time, his 9th being this year’s awards. Sophia Coppola (daughter of Francis Ford Coppola) became the first American woman to be nominated for directing with Lost in Translation. And Finding Nemo won for Best Animated Feature. Because, well, Pixar kicks ass.

There ya have it, the first edition of our Academy Award reviews. I’ll be tweeting during People’s Choice and blogging on Thursday!

I <3 award season (I swear I’m not 12).


February 27, 2011 § Leave a comment

Here it is, 9 minutes away from my favorite night of the year. As I await this big moment, I’ve been asked a few times about my opinion on the films that have been nominated for best picture. I have had the pleasure of seeing 6 out of the 10 so I will do a quick little opinion piece while we wait/watch the show:

Black Swan: Superb filming. I am quite partial to Darren Aronofsky’s work, so excuse the bias. This is not a movie for youngsters nor the faint of heart. Very stirring, and if you will “depressing” but the movie is so beautiful. Natalie Portman gives an incredible performance. Definitely recommend if you’re into thrillers.

The Kids Are All Right: Just recently watched this. The basic theme of this movie is so heart warming – learning to put up with each other’s crap because you love them dearly and because you’re family. Annette Benning is wonderful in this film – again there are a few scenes of “adult content” so don’t watch it with your kids. Nevertheless, I enjoyed it overall.

The Social Network: I could talk for days about this movie. Everything about this film is absolutely perfect. The acting, the writing, the score, the filming, the story, the casting. Everything. Jesse Eisenberg is fabulous and I’m completely in love with him. There are scenes of this movie that make me hold my breath and tear up just because they’re so stunning. If you have not seen this movie yet put it on the queue now. You must watch it as soon as possible.

The King’s Speech: Just watched this yesterday actually. Makes you want to cry. Lovely cast that feels like family. Great, true story of overcoming a great obstacle. To be honest, the trailers made the movie seem a lot more cathartic than it actually is. Superb movie, don’t get me wrong but I was waiting for a more cathartic experience than what I got. Nevertheless – go watch it.

Inception: Great. Very confusing but if you pay great attention to it you’ll be able to follow it perfectly. Quite inventive storyline, but you should watch it with a group of people so you can talk about it after. Definitely a necessity after watching. I loved it, but it’s something you gotta be in the mood for.

Toy Story 3: You. Will. Cry. Well, you’ll cry if the entire series is a part of your life and you grew up with it. Pixar does it great no matter what. They can’t go wrong. Watch it with your kids, watch it by yourself. It’s so wonderful.

I have heard nothing but great things for 127 Hours including an astronomically stunning soundtrack. Also heard the cutting off the arm scene  was excruciatingly gruesome – but after see the entire story, you gotta watch it.

There ya have it! Enjoy the show, ladies and gents.

If I ran the Oscars…

February 27, 2011 § 2 Comments

Big news, people! Academy Awards are tomorrow evening on ABC at 8pm. As I’m sure you’re quite aware I could not be more excited. Anne Hathaway and James Franco are hosting so we certainly are all in for a great show.

Let’s talk about how they are calling the awards “Oscar”. Not a big fan. Let’s just keep it “The Oscars”, please. This is also the second year they doubled the amount of best picture nominations from. In my opinion, ten nominees is just way too many. How is anyone supposed to choose a single movie out of that entire list? It’s nice to have a wide selection of different movies, but when you have to narrow it down to a single film to represent the year’s “best” – a smaller list of choices would be better. In addition to the long list of nominees, the criteria for the winner should be more objective and consistent. Often times, films win due to the politics of the Hollywood world. The Hurtlocker winning because it wasn’t Avatar, in my opinion – maybe in a spiteful sense. (Not so hot now, James Cameron, huh? – your ex-wife just ripped two academy awards out of your hands). There needs to be a more objective criteria. Let’s take a look:

The components to a “Best Picture” winner:
1. The Story. Obviously you need a good storyline to produce a good movie. You can’t write about a geeky kid getting the hot girl and expect to get an academy award nomination. Make it real, relateable, moving, inspiring, controversial (and no, geeks with hot girls is not controversy).

2. The Acting. Sure you can have a stupendous story but if you’re hiring Nicholas Cage and Mariah Carey playing the protagonists in your epic movie you can kiss your Oscar goodbye – you know, you can go ahead and kiss your invitation to the Oscars goodbye as well.

3. The Writing. No CSI: Miami one-liners, please. Smooth, intelligent, relevant writing is incredibly important to a great movie – If what the characters is saying is dull and uninventive no one will want to listen. Hire Aaron Sorkin. Problem solved.

4. The Cinematography. Make your movie pretty!! Stop using straight on shots and panning sunsets; switch it up a little, be creative with the scenes you’ve got.

5. The Music. “To me, movies and music go hand in hand. When I’m writing a script, one of the first things I do is find the music I’m going to play for the opening sequence.” – Quentin Tarantino. If anyone knows the importance of music in movies it’s him. The kind of music used in a scene can make or break it. Something completely joyous can appear horrific or something absolutely frightening can look like the feel good movie of the year without the proper music.

To end today’s blog I’d like to post my predictions for tomorrow night’s winners. Yes, these “predictions” will be full of bias and hopes, but I will do my best to make this as unbiased as possible:

Best Picture: Black Swan, The Fighter, Inception, The Kids Are Alright, The Social Network, The King’s Speech, Toy Story 3, Winter’s Bone, True Grit, 127 Hours
Actor in Lead Role: Javier Bardem, Jeff Bridges, Jesse Eisenberg, Colin Ferth, James Franco
Actor in Supporting Role: Christian Bale, John Hawkes, Jeremy Renner, Mark Ruffalo, Geoffrey Rush
Actress in Lead Role: Annette Benning, Nicole Kidman, Jennifer Lawerence, Natalie Portman, Michelle Williams
Actress in Supporting Role: Amy Adams, Helena Bonham Carter, Melissa Leo, Hailee Steinfeld, Jacki Weaver
Animated Feature Film: The Illusionist, Toy Story 3, How to Train Your Dragon
Directing: Darren Aronofsky, David O. Russell, Tom Hooper, David Fincher, Joel and Ethan Cohen

We’ll keep it a short list today. Tune in tomorrow night to see how my winner’s compare with the academy’s.

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