I saw the final five movies yesterday for the Best Picture nomination for the Oscars. Someone commented the other day asking if I write reviews. I don't really write a reviews in the Siskel and Ebert kind of way, but I am happy to give my opinions. So here they are. I will put them in the order I saw them over the last two Saturdays.
Avatar 3-D: I loved the special effects - the colors, the 3-D (it's come a long way since I last saw a 3-D movie in the 1980's!), the creativity. I was disappointed with the movie over all. Maybe it had been so hyped up that I was expecting too much, but I overall, I thought it was just ok. I'm glad I saw it, but I don't think it belongs in the Best Picture nomination.
Up In the Air: This is my favorite. And not because I have a friend in the movie. I just love, love, love this movie. It really gets to the point about the importance of relationships, love, connections, dependence (good dependence, not co-dependence or "not being able to live" without the other type of dependence) on others. It is well written and well filmed.
Precious: I saw this movie earlier in the season and chose not to sit through it again. Not because it's not a good movie, but because it was hard for me to watch a child be so abused by those who are supposed to love her. I went to dinner instead.
The Blind Side: I really loved this movie. It was the 2nd time I saw it. It's such a good, warm and fuzzy film and the fact that it is a true story adds to it. However, it does seem like an odd nomination for the typically "independent" type films that get nominated.
Inglourious Basterds: I was a little nervous about this one because sometimes I don't do well with violence, mainly when the violence involves a lot of suffering, torture, pain. I had nightmares after Shindler's List and Saving Private Ryan and I wasn't sure what all would be involved in this movie. Also, in general, I have not been a Quentin Tarantino fan. I literally was squinting when this movie started so I could quickly close my eyes if I needed to. The violence in this movie did not bother me, though I did have bad dreams about running from people trying to find and kill me. I guess it was the Nazi theme that brought that out. Anyway, I made it through the movie with lots of laughs and I didn't want it to end.
Up So cute. Lots of laughs. Good story. I really enjoyed this movie. I am so glad I saw it. I can't imagine anyone, no matter their age, not liking this movie.
A Serious Man This is a Coen brothers movie. I haven't seen all of their movies, but I have yet to really like a Coen brothers movie. Raising Arizona is it for me. I can't even explain this movie to you because when it was over we all sat there staring at the screen saying "What the hell?" Even those in my group who love the Coen brothers didn't like it. Well, I think one person liked it. It has lots of individual moments that are quite funny, but as a whole, the movie is disconnected and confusing. I know the story is loosely based on the Bible story of Job, but even that knowledge did not help. When the emcees of the day asked the moviegoers who liked, at least 90% of the theater boo'ed it.
The Hurt Locker: This is another movie I really enjoyed. The story, the acting, the filming was all excellent. It's intense, loud, interesting. The story is written by a journalist who was embedded in a bomb squad in Iraq.
An Education: Another good one. It highlights how easily convinced one can be by another when love, glamour and excitement are involved. Based on a memoir.
District 9: The most.stupid.movie I have ever seen. Ok, maybe not ever, but in my most recent memory.