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I love the Talkies [Jan. 9th, 2011|11:36 pm]
Once again, we are in Oscar season, that cold, dead time of the year when we have to watch serious and depressing movies - and wonder who thought it was a good idea to make those two things coincide. The nominations aren't due out for a couple more weeks, but there is plenty of speculation out there about what movies are going to get the Big Six Nods (Best Pic, Director, and the four acting nods), so I've put together a list of all the movies that we would ideally see before the Oscars. It doesn't include the documentaries or foreign films because I can't find good lists and because I know we aren't going to see them - life only has so many hours, and sometimes we have to, like, work.

So here goes. Let's start with the ones that we've seen. Strangely, they happen to also be the top 10 in the race - how lucky is that?

1. The King’s Speech - Possible the best movie I've seen this year. Just delightful
2. The Social Network - Interesting and well-done, likely to get nods, but I think not to win because the story is so empty.
3. The Fighter - Acting nods will definitely come out of this fighter movie. Very, very good.
4. True Grit - An excellent adaptation of the novel. Excellent.
5. Inception - I think this movie is going to get backlashed by DVD rewatching - all the people who were "blown away" by it (really by the hype) are going to feel ripped off when they rewatch it and it's not all that. Solid BDM (big dumb movie) that got overblown and will suffer for it, I fear.
6. Black Swan - This is going to pick up nods just for being the creepy entry of the year. Not that it doesn't deserve them, just it's much more of a shoe-in for them in a year when the story-telling - though solid - is for the most part conventional.
7. Toy Story 3 - What can I say? It's gorgeous and made me cry like a baby.
8. The Kids Are All Right - The most disappointing of the bunch. Watched it today and found it relelntlessly self-involved and neither surprising nor particularly engaging.
9. The Town - This will get nominated but not win much. It was a good, serviceable movie, but ultimately kind of forgettable.
10. Winter’s Bone - Watched this today, too, and was surprised at how engaging it was. I really, really liked it. Well-acted and surprisingly good.

Now the ones I expect to see before the Oscar nominations come out, based on just wanting to see them. I don't know enough about them to make comments.

11. 127 Hours
12. Another Year
13. Rabbit Hole
14. Blue Valentine
15. The Ghost Writer
16. Get Low

And the ones I will probably only see if they get nominated for something:

17. Biutiful
18. Conviction
19. Frankie & Alice
20. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
21. Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps
22. Animal Kingdom
23. Somewhere
24. The Tree of Life
25. The American
26. London Boulevard
27. Miral
28. Hereafter
29. Fair Game
30. Never Let Me Go

And last, the possible nominees for Best Animated Picture

31. Despicable Me - Cute, but not going to win.
32. How to Train Your Dragon - Awesome, but not going to win.
33. MegaMind - Didn't see it, didn't want to, and not going to win
34. The Illusionist - Will be nominated so something not CGI is; not going to win.
35. Tangled - Absolutely wonderful; probably won't even be nominated.
36. The Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole - The previews scared me enough, didn't need to see it; won't win.
37. Toy Story 3 - Crown Prince

I'm not ready to make any predictions yet. What I do have to say about this year's collection of Oscar movies are - with a few exceptions - the most uplifting and inspiring I've seen in years. I have to wonder if this is a "wartime effect" - we don't have a bunch of happy feet musicals, but there is a certain desire to tell happier stories.

[User Picture]From: mariadkins
2011-01-10 04:45 am (UTC)
i thoroughly enjoyed all three of stieg larson's "girl" books. i've not seen any of the original movies - though preston has and he said they were good.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-01-10 04:51 am (UTC)
I haven't read them yet. They kind of ended up in that "too much hype" category. I'll probably read them when I find them at the used book store.
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[User Picture]From: mariadkins
2011-01-10 04:57 am (UTC)
i read them because i had borrowed a friend's kindle back in the fall and she had all three of them on there - i read all three straight through. quite a ride.

(and to think i was borrowing the kindle just to see how i'd like it - i forgot i was reading ebooks LOL)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-01-10 05:09 am (UTC)
I read ebooks on my iPhone, but I don't need another thing to carry around.
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[User Picture]From: myrrhdusa
2011-01-10 04:57 am (UTC)
I will warn you that because they are translated, there are some things that seem to go too far into depth, explaining every last detail, but the story was engaging, and I really loved the main character. She's just plain awesome, an unlikely superheroine.
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[User Picture]From: myrrhdusa
2011-01-10 04:53 am (UTC)
I saw them, and while they are not as involved as the books, I thought they were a good adaptation. The lead actress is wonderful and real. They are making an American version, I'm not sure why.
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[User Picture]From: mariadkins
2011-01-10 04:55 am (UTC)
that's what preston said, too. and i don't understand this need to make "american versions" of every movie that's not made stateside. :eye roll:
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[User Picture]From: kenp_v3
2011-01-10 04:59 am (UTC)
I saw The Social Network, Inception, Toy Story 3 and The Town. Since I actually saw those movies I'm going to assume none of them win Best Picture. Of those The Social Network seems to be the most well-liked. Which is kind of weird to me. I liked it, but I didn't love it and will probably watch it once more and then I'll eventually forget about it. I had the opposite reaction to Inception that you described. I now own the DVD, have already seen it five times and will probably watch it a few more times. It's one of those movies where every time I watch it I pick up a cool little detail that I missed before, or I start thinking about it a different way than I had previously. It's definetley the opposite of a Big Dumb Movie to me.

Oh I also saw MegaMind in order to sober up after a visit to the Hofbrauhaus. In my state I probably thought it was a lot more funny than it actually was.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-01-10 05:12 am (UTC)
Oh, I like it, own it on DVD, and like it on DVD, but I wasn't one of those people who thought it was SO MINDBLOWING, just a good SFX movie, so I am not disappointed by the repeat experience.

We'll eventually see MegaMind when it hits Netflix Instant.
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[User Picture]From: mystic_savage
2011-01-10 06:21 am (UTC)
Gosh - I haven't seen the Oscars or even been to the movies in so very long...The King's Speech and True Grit? Are those your highest recommends if I pick only two to watch from this year?
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-01-10 02:32 pm (UTC)
There are some other comedies and "just not Oscar" movies that I've enjoyed. But if someone said to me that they were only going to watch two movies out of ALL the movies that came out of the year, I would probably recommend Toy Story 3 and The King's Speech.
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[User Picture]From: ccr1138
2011-01-10 06:38 am (UTC)
Out of the ones you've not seen, I recommend The Ghost Writer. Not only because there's lots of Ewan screen time [sigh] but because it has the eerie, bleak feel of a Hitchcock classic.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-01-10 02:33 pm (UTC)
Cool - thanks!
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[User Picture]From: meyerweb.com
2011-01-11 09:59 pm (UTC)
I do sort of wonder if "The Illusionist" will pull out a "we want to vote for an art film, dagnabit!" win. Especially since most recent Pixar films have won in this category, if I remember aright.

(Also, I always thought it was "shoo-in": http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/shoe-in.html .)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2011-01-12 02:11 am (UTC)
It probably is shoo-in.

Yes, most recent Pixar films have won. I have wondered myself whether an art film would break their streak.
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