Posted by Hedwig on February 26, 2008
That little guinea pig is getting to the big ones, starting with Best Director. It was a tight race, with #’s 1 and 2 getting an equal amount of votes, but the Coen brothers were four point behind… Well, if you know it’s not the Coens, you’ll know who it is, and you’ll understand why I really cannot wait until Thursday. Number 3 wasn’t too far behind, but the rest of the votes was distributed among an impressive number of worthy contenders.
My own votes went to 1. the Coens, 2. Todd Haynes, 3. Wes Anderson (yup, I was that lone vote) , 4. David Fincher and 5. Joe Wright, mostly because I felt bad about him getting snubbed at the Oscars for Jason Reitman.
Don’t forget to also check out the Best Cinematic Moment Muriels: the votes are, obviously, all over the place, but that category is a great way of re-living some of the nicest scenes. My votes were very similar to this post on the old blog, and added to that
- the moment that should get the award for “greatest use of Adrien Brody’s limbs – ever”: his running for the train in The Darjeeling Limited
- Juno telling her dad and stepmom about her pregnancy – see, I don’t hate Juno!
Biggest surprise? I was the only one who mentioned that great scene in the fog at the beginning of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, with Jesse James waiting for the train to arrive. Simply breathtaking. I’m still waiting for the director’s cut of that one, incidentally. And if anyone feels like sending it to me as a late, late birthday present, I won’t stop you
Posted in Awards | Tagged: Coen brothers, Juno, Muriel Awards, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert F, The Darjeeling Limited | 8 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 25, 2008
Oh, you all know who the oscars went to by now. I’m too lazy to duplicate here the results you’ve probably already read in at least five other places, and since I didn’t watch the broadcast I have no comment on Jon Steward, endless montages or acceptance speeches. But I wanted to open a forum anyway, so here are some stray thoughts
- I wasn’t offended by ANY of the choices, which is truly remarkable. I mean, I thought Blanchett gave a more impressive performance than Tilda Swinton, but she already has a couple golden men, and Swinton gave a great performance that deserves recognition. As for best Actress, I only saw two of the nominated performances, so I didn’t really have a great preference in that category. And well, La Môme/La Vie en Rose was a huge mess of a movie, but Cotillard threw herself into the role and was such a gracious, charming winner, so over the moon with her award, that I couldn´t possibly begrudge her winning it.
- It was a mess of a movie though. On the radio, the film was described as telling the life of Edith Piaf from her origins singing on the streets to her addiction and demise later in life, and I found myself thinking, “I wish!”. Was all that jumping back in forth in time really necessary? I’m glad it won best make-up, though, because it truly would have been a disgrace if Norbit had won both 3 Razzies and an Oscar.
- I thought the script for Juno was all-too-smug, with too many references, and that the actors were to be admired for making it work. Still, the whole backlash against Diablo Cody makes me want to get behind her, and in any case, I’m happy one of the nominated women won, and for a movie with an uncompromising girl at its center.
- No Country For Old Men won! Of course, I won’t be able to say if that’s truly deserved until Thursday, when I finally get to see Daniel Day-Lewis in action, but it was by far my favorite among the four nominees I’d seen, and it was a great group to be the best of. And the Coens won too! And for adapted screenplay! And Bardem’s haircut did too!
- … but Roger Deakins didn’t win. Admittedly, I thought his work on The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford was even better, but I’m a little sad that he didn’t get anything. I suppose his day will come. And from what I’ve seen, the cinematography in There Will Be Blood is nothing to be laughed at, either.
- Falling Slowly won! I liked Enchanted, but the music was highly forgetable, and this was one of the few categories where any other winner would have left me disappointed. So go Glenn & Marketa!
So, any thoughts? For a full list of winner, see (for instance) the official page
EDIT: and then I forgot about my real goal for this post… which is to remind you that the Muriels are still on, and will be for another week, so don’t forget to check Paul’s site every day! My #1 picks for best supporting actor & actress already won, as did my top picks for screenplay & cinematography, but my streak isn’t likely to continue: I didn’t pick Daniel Day-Lewis for the simple reason that I haven’t seen There Will Be Blood yet, and I’m guessing my #1 pick for best actress won’t win either.
Posted in Awards | Tagged: Academy Awards, Oscars | 8 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 24, 2008
Lately, I haven’t really been home evenings, and as a result I’m not seeing as many movies as I’d like. I even missed Deep Throat, which was on TV tonight. So, why this post? Well, I did get my day at the Muriels. The Best Supporting Actress Muriel was announced, and Paul asked me to write a little blurb for the winner. Go check out who won (and what I wrote) here.
Posted in Awards | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Hedwig on February 20, 2008
The Coen series finally came to a conclusion yesterday with my second viewing of No Country For Old Men. And well… there is something I feel I should confess: I try mighty hard to come across as determined and opinionated and right, but the truth is I’m someone very prone to doubting her own thoughts and opinions. So after a number of friends told me they didn’t see the point of the Coens’ latest, and a rather vicious discussion in response to my review on filmtotaal, I started to question my dedication to this movie.
Who knew? Maybe it really wasn’t so great. Maybe I was influenced by writers I admire, maybe I was just practicing “intellectual masturbation”. Maybe I was just kidding myself, pretending that I “got” the movie, to feel superior and smart. Maybe I was simply too afraid to disagree with critical consensus. Maybe the emperor did, in fact, have no clothes on.
I needn’t have been scared: not only is the emperor fully dressed, but my, does he look handsome. ***SPOILERS WITHIN***
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Coen bros., New, Reviews | Tagged: Anton Chigurh, Carla Jean Moss, Carson Wells, Coen bros., Coen brothers, Ed Tom Bell, Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Llewelyn Moss, No Country for Old Men, Tommy Lee Jones | 5 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 20, 2008
“First of all: Papa Smurf didn’t create Smurfette – Gargamel did! She was sent in as Gargamel’s evil spy with the intention of destroying the Smurf village. But the overwhelming goodness of the Smurf way of life transformed her. And as for the whole gangbang scenario – Huh! I – it just couldn’t happen. Smurfs are asexual, th-they don’t even have…reproductive organs under those little…white…pants. That’s what’s so illogical, y’know, about being a Smurf.
Y’know what’s the point of living… if you don’t have a dick?”
Posted in Other | 2 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 19, 2008
2007 was an amazing year for music in movies, so much so I almost made a top 10 musical moments. I mean, think about it: there was a wonderful, unconventional little musical (Once), one movie based on a great musical artist featuring both originals and covers (I’m Not There), one conventional biopic of a great band (Control), two notorious compilers with eclectic taste delivering two soundtracks as great as we’ve come to expect from them (The Darjeeling Limited & Death Proof), some great instrumental scores (most notably the one by Nick Cave & Warren Ellis for The Assassination of Jesse James by the coward Robert Ford, but I really like the Atonement score, with its incorporated typewriter sounds, as well), one movie with great blues numbers (Black Snake Moan), and last but not least, who can forget Spider-Pig?
Even the Juno soundtrack, while in my mind wrong for the movie, had some great songs on it, and while I thought Gus van Sant’s use of Elliot Smith songs for Paranoid Park was to me evidence that he was looking back rather than forward, there was some very interesting, atmospheric, electronic music in that movie too.
The Muriels also have a category for soundtracks, and I’m very glad Paul is much more inclusive than Oscar. Check out the results here. Other categories recently announced: best Ensemble (a very worthy winner) & best Body of Work (a winner I can’t really disagree with either). My own nominations are after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Awards | Tagged: Muriel Awards | 7 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 18, 2008
One of the reasons (read: excuses) I haven’t posted once a day like I resolved is that all of a sudden, I seem to have developed a rather active social life. Yeah, I don’t know how that happened either. Anyhow, this means I did not watch a movie tonight, but went to a very nice café that has live music on Mondays. Why is this relevant? It isn’t really, but when I came out of the café the world had turned magical. Like a fairy tale, like my friend V. said. There was fog everywhere, rising up from the street, and the view of the old canal with beautiful, wiry old trees on both sides and the reflection of the old-fashioned streetlights in the water was simply amazing, and we could even hear the bells in the distance. As I biked under the Dom, looking up and not seeing the top, barely even being able to discern the clock (unfortunately, it was 5 past midnight. 5 minutes earlier would have truly made it perfect), it felt like I stepped right into a movie.
Which got me to thinking: what are the best fog scenes ever made? Or rather, what are your favorite misty scenes? I’ll start, and take the obvious off the table: the final scene of Casablanca remains one of the most powerful end scenes ever filmed, no matter how often it’s been parodied. Soderbergh did his best in the Good German, but he didn’t even get close.
Dear readers, the floor is open to you now, and I’m looking forward to your reactions!
Posted in Other | Tagged: Casablanca, Fog, Steven Soderbergh, The Good German | 6 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 17, 2008
Shoot ‘em up
Is exaggeration inherently funny? Your answer to that question probably determines in large part whether Shoot ‘em up, in which Clive Owen literally shoots over a hundred ‘them’s up, will work for you. Me? Exaggeration is one of my favorite tricks, and I had fun with the movie.It did become rather repetitive in the end, and I could have done without Monica Belluci the italian lactating hooker. Interestingly enough, Clive Owen plays it straight, and so does Paul Giamatti: his character overacts, but Giamatti resists the urge to winkat us. I’m not entirely certain it was the right decision, and I can’t really recommend the film, but I’m not sorry I watched it – possibly the weakest positive judgment you can give a movie, but there you have it.
Gone Baby Gone
In this assured debut from Ben Aflleck, it was mostly his brother who impressed me – though I wouldn’t mind if he articulated a smidgen more. The story twisted and turned more than I expected, all the way to an ending that leaves you uncertain about how to feel. It isn’t sad, perse, but uplifting isn’t it, either. I understand the fuss about Amy Ryan, but still think Cate Blanchett deserves the top prize. The biggest achievement of this film is in how it captures a certain mood in a certain place, and while I wouldn’t call it a masterpiece or even original, it’s worth two hours of your time.
Posted in New, Reviews | Tagged: Amy Ryan, Ben Affleck, Casey Affleck, Clive Owen, Gone Baby Gone, Paul Giamatti, Shoot 'em up | 5 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 16, 2008
The Anniversary Awards for 1957, 1982 and 1997 have been announced, and now we’re finally getting to 2007, starting with Cinematic Breakthrough. My votes in that category were:
- Julie Delpy as a writer/director (who ended up at 14, with 1 other vote)
- James Marsden as a comedic/musical actor (seriously, who’d have thought he was funny? Nobody else was surprised, apparently, as he only got my vote)
- Tony Gilroy as a director (got two other votes, putting him at #9)
- Kelly McDonald (and I was the only one! Though maybe the other voters already discovered her before)
- Andrew Dominik (who also got my vote alone)
Votes were spread pretty wide, maybe because the category is so broad, but there was one clear winner. Check out who that was here.
Posted in Awards | Tagged: Andrew Dominik, James Marsden, Julie Delpy, Kelly McDonald, Muriel Awards, Tony Gilroy | 3 Comments »
Posted by Hedwig on February 16, 2008
Originally, after hearing the premise of Pushing Daisies, I’d dismissed it as ridiculously high-concept: a guy can bring people back from the dead by touching them, but if he then touches them again they die for good. And if he doesn’t touch them again within exactly 1 minute, someone else in random proximity dies.
There is one positive thing about the strike, however: because there are no more new episodes of my favorite shows, I have the time to go back and watch things I probably wouldn’t have otherwise. And Pushing Daisies, while indeed ridiculously high-concept, is also unbelievably fun. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in TV | Tagged: Barry Sonnenfeld, Chi McBride, Kristen Chenoweth, Pushing Daisies | 3 Comments »