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Monthly Archives: February 2014

Philomena

philomenaNominations: Best Picture, Leading Actress (Judi Dench), Original Score, and Adapted Screenplay (Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope)

A world-weary political journalist picks up the story of a woman’s search for her son, who was taken away from her decades ago after she became pregnant and was forced to live in a convent. (IMDb)

This was the nominee that I knew very little about, but as of right now, it’s one of my favorites. It’s an absolutely fascinating story, which is even more interesting because it’s true. Judi Dench is fabulous, but then again, when is she not? What I liked is that she didn’t fall into any specific old woman trope, which I’ve been seeing a lot lately.. She wasn’t just a cute little old lady, a sassy old lady, or a religious old lady, (to name a few) she was all of them. She was an actual complete, flawed person. I absolutely loved her. Steve Coogan also turns in a really nice performance, also letting his character flaws show and affect his journey throughout the movie. Also, he and Dench work really well off of each other. Throughout the course of the movie, you truly care about these characters and want to see them succeed in finding her son. In the end, it becomes a movie about choosing forgiveness over anger, and I thought it conveyed that message beautifully.

8.5/10

 
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Posted by on February 16, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Nebraska

nebraskaNominations: Best Picture, Leading Actor (Bruce Dern), Supporting Actress (June Squibb), Cinematography, Directing (Alexander Payne), and Original Screenplay (Bob Nelson)

An aging, booze-addled father makes the trip from Montana to Nebraska with his estranged son in order to claim a million-dollar Mega Sweepstakes Marketing prize. (IMDb)

I wanted to like this. I really did. But for me, it was a struggle to get through. I found it really slow paced. And honestly, the black and white didn’t work for me. It didn’t add anything to the story. There were actually times, especially with some of the Nebraska background/skyline, that I really wanted the color. The acting is fantastic, except I don’t like any of the characters. I will say, the ultimate story they were telling was really touching, as were the last 10 minutes. Stories about fathers and sons and growing old are timeless. I was actually sad that this one just didn’t do it for me.

5/10

 
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Posted by on February 12, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Saving Mr. Banks

saving mr. banksNomination: Original Score

Author P.L. Travers reflects on her childhood after reluctantly meeting with Walt Disney, who seeks to adapt her Mary Poppins books for the big screen. (IMDb)

The word I would use to describe this movie is lovely. It’s not too sappy, but there are moments, and it simply presents the story behind one of Disney’s most popular movies. If you’re a fan of Mary Poppins or of Disney at all actually, you will love this. All of the Disney easter eggs and references to the movie itself will have you humming the popular songs, and actually wanting to watch Mary Poppins right after.  As for the story itself, I thought it was really interesting. Seeing how this movie developed under P.L. Travers’ critical eye is a lot of fun to watch. That’s mostly thanks to Emma Thompson. I loved her in this. I would say that she is the number one reason to watch this movie. The other thing that makes the story interesting is the flashbacks to her childhood, which explains even more about Mary Poppins and why Travers was the way she was as an adult. Which leads me to the number two reason to watch this movie; Colin Farrell, who plays her dad. This is actually some of my favorite acting that I have seen out of him. One of my favorite scenes in the whole movie is when the Sherman brothers are presenting the bank song to Mrs. Travers and it’s over-laid with Colin Farrell’s character giving a speech. Loved it. Speaking of the Sherman Brothers, I really enjoyed Jason Schwartzmann and BJ Novak as the brothers, as well Bradley Whitford as another member of the team and Paul Giamatti as her driver. Basically, if you’re a Disney fan, you will absolutely love this. Even if you’re not, I think you’ll still find this enjoyable.

7/10

 
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Posted by on February 1, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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