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?Rorshach?
My old lady and I are trying to get caught up on all the potential Best Picture noms before the Oscars come around and I was thinking some of you dudes might want to try and watch them with me.

This isn't going to be anywhere near as structured as Album of the Week was and very well might just end up being my blogging what movies I watch, but I figure I'll post what I'm watching/what I watched along with my thoughts and you guys can either follow my lead or just do the same or...whatever.

The official noms won't be announced until next week, but after reading a few prediction sites, here's the list I'm working with,

Boyhood
Birdman
The Imitation Game
Selma
Gone Girl
Grand Budapest Hotel
The Theory of Everything
Whiplash
Foxcatcher
Nightcrawler
Unbroken
American Sniper
A Most Violent Year
Into the Woods
Get on Up
Mr. Turner
Still Alice
Wild
Cake
Two Days One Night
The Judge
Snowpiercer

I didn't feel like categorizing them all, but basically if you've seen all of those movies, you'll have a pretty good impression of ever potential Best Picture/Actor/Actress/Director nom.

I've already seen a few of them (though I might rewatch them) but yeah...you guys get the idea.
?Rorshach?
I'm watching Into the Woods right now. Somehow I simoultaneously like it more and less than Les Mis, but ultimately its my opinion that movie musicals are sort of a dead genre. I guess that's weird to say given the popularity of Glee and High School musical or whatever, but I just can't help but feel awkward and uncomfortable staring at a screen in 2015 where people sing their thoughts and conversations.

I also just really can't stand Johnny Depp anymore. Dude feels like he was created by a Hot Topic marketing team and he needs to go away.

Oh and the Red Riding hood "the Big Bad Wold Ate Me" song is 100% about rape. No joke.

That said, Into the Woods is as good as it can be, I just don't think I'm their target audience (though I also can't say for sure who that audience is either).
sonofaresiii
1) You listed American Sniper twice

2) I'll watch as many of these as I can "with" you, it's screener season so I should be able to get most of them from friends. I think I'm doing Imitation Game tonight or tomorrow, really excited for it.

3) Into the Woods is the one movie I really want to see, but the only people who would have gone with me have already seen it and I hate seeing movies by myself so I don't know what to do. I tried to get one of my friends to go, and his reaction was "I don't really watch kids movies dude." Which, despite how wrong it is, if that's his reaction there's no way I'm going to convince him to go... and I think that's the reaction all of my other friends will have.

4) I hated Birdman so much. So so much. Still calling it for best picture nod.

5) I dunno about your stance on musical movies being a dead genre dude. I mean we can trace it all the way back to Sound of Music and Wizard of Oz, it's obviously a genre that's going to stick around. Maybe it's just not your thing?

6) How many of these movies have you seen already? I've only seen 3-- Birdman, Gone Girl, Theory of Everything. Hated Birdman, had some issues with Gone Girl but it was entertaining, enjoyed Theory of Everything but i'll be surprised if it gets a best picture nod, it's pretty standard boy meets girl/struggles with debilitating disease type stuff.
davey1212k
Geez, I never realized how many decent movies come out every year.

What about Inherent Vice? I haven't seen it so I don't know, but I thought that was pretty well received.

Also, has anyone seen Foxcatcher? I want to see that one
sonofaresiii
Let's be clear though-- Potential Best Picture Oscar nomination != Good movie.

See: Birdman
sonofaresiii
It's neat how I arbitrarily capitalized some of those words but not others.
sonofaresiii
I mean, is Potential Best Oscar Nomination a title? Then why didn't I capitalize Nomination? If it's not a title then why was Potential capitalized? And where the hell did that capital G come from on Good?

Mysteries of the universe, guys.
davey1212k
can you say what you didn't like about birdman without giving much away?
sonofaresiii
Sure, and to be fair almost everyone universally disagrees with me, so you should give it a shot regardless.

But...

1) Gimmicky

2) Too much subtext, not enough text

That said, it had some really awesome moments and the acting was fucking fantastic (everyone in that movie deserves an oscar).
RotatingHornSection
Will see Foxcatcher today. Inherent Vice very soon just because of PT Anderson. Wanna see Whiplash but its nowhere in theatres around me?
SkankinLibrarian
I've seen 0 of the movies on that list.
?Rorshach?
QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 9 2015, 01:13 PM) *
1) You listed American Sniper twice


No I didn't.

QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 9 2015, 01:13 PM) *
2) I'll watch as many of these as I can "with" you, it's screener season so I should be able to get most of them from friends. I think I'm doing Imitation Game tonight or tomorrow, really excited for it.


Yeah, I downloaded almost all of them last night. A Most Violent Year and Cake were the only two I'm still struggling with finding.

QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 9 2015, 01:13 PM) *
3) Into the Woods is the one movie I really want to see, but the only people who would have gone with me have already seen it and I hate seeing movies by myself so I don't know what to do. I tried to get one of my friends to go, and his reaction was "I don't really watch kids movies dude." Which, despite how wrong it is, if that's his reaction there's no way I'm going to convince him to go... and I think that's the reaction all of my other friends will have.


Yeah, for me it's made for a pretty perfect "lazy couch in the middle of a snow day" movie. Has your girlfriend seen it already?

QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 9 2015, 01:13 PM) *
4) I hated Birdman so much. So so much. Still calling it for best picture nod.


Haven't seen it yet, but it's easily the movie I'm looking forward to the most.

QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 9 2015, 01:13 PM) *
5) I dunno about your stance on musical movies being a dead genre dude. I mean we can trace it all the way back to Sound of Music and Wizard of Oz, it's obviously a genre that's going to stick around. Maybe it's just not your thing?


See, this is sort of my point though. I feel like when film became a thing, it was the child of stage productions and so musicals were sort of a given (that's what acting WAS at the time). Over the years though, I just think movies have clearly come into their own as a medium an musicals have gone out of style.

I mean, over the past 10 years, how many blockbuster musicals have we really had? Moulin Rouge? Chicago? Rent? Shy of that, Les Mis was a major flop and Into the Woods is "meh" at best. That genre is looking at 1 semi-successful film every 2 or 3 years and even that seems a resurgence compared to 20 years ago (I can't for the life of me name a successful musical from the 90s). Put that up against the the 1950s (Singin in the Rain, The King and I, White Christmas, Annie Get Your Gun...etc) and it's hard to deny that musicals aren't the power house they once were.

To be totally clear, this is coming from a HUGE fan of stage musicals. The sets/costumes/production/performances are absolutely flooring and I love them; I just think maybe what makes it so impressive is that it's happening right before my eyes. When you take a year and a half of multitrack recording and studio editing, the magic is just sort of lost.

QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 9 2015, 01:13 PM) *
6) How many of these movies have you seen already? I've only seen 3-- Birdman, Gone Girl, Theory of Everything. Hated Birdman, had some issues with Gone Girl but it was entertaining, enjoyed Theory of Everything but i'll be surprised if it gets a best picture nod, it's pretty standard boy meets girl/struggles with debilitating disease type stuff.


Actually, I only saw Interstellar (forgot this one on the original list) and Gone Girl (and now, Into the Woods). I'm way behind this year.
sonofaresiii
I was going to suggest interstellar, but I don't know if it'll make the list actually. Nolan has never been a favorite of the Academy, and they usually ignore blockbuster Sci fi movies.
sonofaresiii
Cinematography nod for sure though, and probably the win.
davey1212k
QUOTE (?Rorshach? @ Jan 9 2015, 02:49 PM) *
Shy of that, Les Mis was a major flop


I don't see this being true financially or critically or any other way. Yes, the movie could've been better (cinematography, Russell Crowe etc.), but the show itself is pretty much the perfect musical so it would've taken serious work to really ruin it and I don't think they came close to doing that. I mean, listening to Eponine sing "On My Own" still moves me to tears whether I'm watching the movie or a live performance MAJOR flop??? No.
edit: 1 other point on Les Mis. I appreciated a new look at such a classic show. Even though I still feel the end product wasn't as perfect as the show itself, seeing it as a movie didn't ruin anything for me.

QUOTE (?Rorshach? @ Jan 9 2015, 02:49 PM) *
Put that up against the the 1950s (Singin in the Rain, The King and I, White Christmas, Annie Get Your Gun...etc) and it's hard to deny that musicals aren't the power house they once were.


This is true. There was a certain magic about movie musicals in the golden age. Some of my favorites among those also included Hello Dolly, Music Man, Bye Bye Birdie. But the musical is still an art form that I, and many others love. Maybe it depends on your friends, but I have 3 solid friends that really genuinely love musicals and when we jam together we cover songs from musicals just as often as we cover Frank Turner songs. Since I can't always afford to go to Broadway shows, I like that they continue to make movie versions. They're doing Wicked soon and that will be something I totally will want to see. They did Peter Pan Live this year and while it wasn't perfect (Allison Williams missed some points and Christopher Walken wasn't as great as I hoped) I'm still REALLY glad they did it.




edit: last thing. I hope I don't come across as upset or anything by my disagreement, I just have strong opinions. Still I understand, "different strokes for different folks"
QUOTE (?Rorshach? @ Jan 9 2015, 02:49 PM) *
The sets/costumes/production/performances are absolutely flooring and I love them; I just think maybe what makes it so impressive is that it's happening right before my eyes. When you take a year and a half of multitrack recording and studio editing, the magic is just sort of lost.


Les Mis was sung-through live...but it was autotuned (especially Russell Crowe) after the fact so there's that. If big studios just didn't feel the need to overproduce major releases I think the modern movie-musical could be better. The fuckin Sound of Music soundtrack was a huge selling record and they didn't overproduce any of that shit.

?Rorshach?
QUOTE (davey1212k @ Jan 9 2015, 02:15 PM) *
I don't see this being true financially or critically or any other way. Yes, the movie could've been better (cinematography, Russell Crowe etc.), but the show itself is pretty much the perfect musical so it would've taken serious work to really ruin it and I don't think they came close to doing that. I mean, listening to Eponine sing "On My Own" still moves me to tears whether I'm watching the movie or a live performance MAJOR flop??? No.


I guess this is fair. I think I was just disappointed enough that my memory is a little jaded, but after looking it up, you're right that it did well enough financially and received fair reviews.

That said though, I still think it was a huge disappointment and have yet to meet anyone who really loved it. I couldn't agree more that Anne Hathaway was incredible, but Eponine is alive for what? 30 minutes? She get's 3 songs and one solo, then she's gone. On My Own was excellent, but can you seriously pick a "second best" song in that movie?

I agree about Peter Pan though. It's like I said, I think there's just something special about a live performance and for me at least, that's critical in a musical.
davey1212k
QUOTE (?Rorshach? @ Jan 9 2015, 03:26 PM) *
I guess this is fair. I think I was just disappointed enough that my memory is a little fucking sexy, but after looking it up, you're right that it did well enough financially and received fair reviews.

And I'm probably too praising of it, so we're both in the same boat.


QUOTE (?Rorshach? @ Jan 9 2015, 03:26 PM) *
That said though, I still think it was a huge disappointment and have yet to meet anyone who really loved it.

You're right. It's not gonna be someone's top movie-musical.

QUOTE (?Rorshach? @ Jan 9 2015, 03:26 PM) *
I couldn't agree more that Anne Hathaway was incredible, but Eponine is alive for what? 30 minutes? She get's 3 songs and one solo, then she's gone. On My Own was excellent, but can you seriously pick a "second best" song in that movie?

I think you're thinking of Fantine's "I Dreamed A Dream" which actually is my #1 and made me ball my eyes in the theatre. Eponine's "On My Own" is the one the black haired chick she sings for Eddie Redmayne when she realizes he'll never love her. Both very worthy of tearjerking.

Obviously I'm very biased so it's hard for me to separate my favorite songs (of which there are a lot) from the show and what was genuinely because of the movie performance. But Anne Hathaway and Eponine (can't think of the actress) both did excellent.

ANYWAY, we're talking about 2015 nominations so sorry for taking the conversation off track. Definitely have to see Into the Woods. I saw it at a local theatre when I was pretty young so I don't remember it much. Seeing the movie will be a fresh experience and I'll probably be more critical of it than I am with Les Mis
?Rorshach?
QUOTE (davey1212k @ Jan 9 2015, 02:37 PM) *
I think you're thinking of Fantine's "I Dreamed A Dream" which actually is my #1 and made me ball my eyes in the theatre. Eponine's "On My Own" is the one the black haired chick she sings for Eddie Redmayne when she realizes he'll never love her. Both very worthy of tearjerking.

Obviously I'm very biased so it's hard for me to separate my favorite songs (of which there are a lot) from the show and what was genuinely because of the movie performance. But Anne Hathaway and Eponine (can't think of the actress) both did excellent.


Haha, I guess this is sort of the ultimate "touche"

I'll be curious to hear what you dudes think of Into the Woods. Over the course of it, I went from "eh, this is fine but could be better" to "seriously, what the fuck is going on?"

The performances were all pretty solid though and it was kind of cool at the end when the credits rolled and my girlfriend and I kind of realized "oh yeah wow...I guess there really were only like 8 people in that whole thing"

Still though, I'm giving that one a B- at best.
sonofaresiii
Ohhh you didn't see the stage version? Yeah dude, Sondheim uh... Sondheim gets dark. It takes a weird twist. I'm interested to see how they deal with The Narrator. Wait, is there even a narrator?


Wait, don't tell me.
RotatingHornSection
Foxcatcher is a very compelling movie. Go into it knowing nothing about it and you'll enjoy it even more. It's made me want to read everything there is to know about the main characters and Team Foxcatcher.
sonofaresiii
Did anyone see the Jon Stewart movie? Any good?
Spelster
QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 9 2015, 07:44 PM) *
Did anyone see the Jon Stewart movie? Any good?

It wasn't as good as I was hoping, but it was fine.
sonofaresiii
Finished Imitation Game. Good, not great.
sonofaresiii
Oh and yeah Dylan, my girlfriend already saw it but she's a huge fan of the stage version. She liked it but didn't.
?Rorshach?
QUOTE (RotatingHornSection @ Jan 9 2015, 06:28 PM) *
Foxcatcher is a very compelling movie. Go into it knowing nothing about it and you'll enjoy it even more. It's made me want to read everything there is to know about the main characters and Team Foxcatcher.


Just watched this one. I definitely liked it, but it also felt the whole time like it was just building to a big dramatic twist (probably because that's exactly what it was doing).

(really not a "spoiler" at all...but like Matt said, it's more fun to go into it knowing absolutely nothing at all, so for the sake of the hardcore knownothingist, I threw some spoiler tags on their).
RotatingHornSection
Has anybody seen Inherent Vice yet? I've only heard one review from a respected source that praised the film as a whole but described it as the "least fun movie experience" they've ever had. Felt more like a chore to sit through. A very well made chore, but still a chore.
davey1212k
QUOTE (RotatingHornSection @ Jan 11 2015, 12:51 PM) *
Has anybody seen Inherent Vice yet? I've only heard one review from a respected source that praised the film as a whole but described it as the "least fun movie experience" they've ever had. Felt more like a chore to sit through. A very well made chore, but still a chore.


I sat through 40 minutes of it last night. I was pretty tired when I ended up turning it off, but it was a very slow go regardless of that. I'm hopeful I'll get in the mood to try it again, but I can't be too sure. Watch at your own risk

And I agree with everyone's opinion on Foxcatcher. Good movie and going into it knowing nothing about it made it better for me as well.
RotatingHornSection
QUOTE (sonofaresiii @ Jan 10 2015, 12:11 AM) *
Finished Imitation Game. Good, not great.


Another tortured genius that nobody understands movie? THat's all it looks like to me.
sonofaresiii
Yep
yepyep
I haven't seen many of these movies, but I really enjoyed Boyhood. Like, I haven thought about it several times since I saw it.
sonofaresiii
Can anyone tell me the rationale behind Birdman being in the musical/comedy category for the Golden Globes?

Was it seriously supposed to be a comedy?
RotatingHornSection
Yes
sonofaresiii
I'm not trying to be pretentious like "I didn't find it funny so it's not a comedy"

I just genuinely... didn't know it was supposed to be a comedy. It seemed like a dramatic character study.

I don't know how they divvy up the categories, but I really wonder if the producers pushed for it to be comedy so there'd be less competition.

Am I crazy here? Did anyone else think "Of course it's a comedy"?
RotatingHornSection
A lot of stuff was meant to make you laugh.

The first death was comical. Running through the streets naked was supposed to make you laugh. Boners during plays was supposed to make you laugh. Norton ruining the play was supposed to make you laugh.
sonofaresiii
Fair enough, I guess. I just thought most of that was part of the drama, and even the comedic parts were more funny parts of a drama than the other way around.

Like when he had to go through Times Square in his underwear, I didn't think that was supposed to be funny, more like look how little dignity this famous star's life is turning into that he has to run through one of the most populated areas in the world in his underwear. Which really was just a mechanism to heighten the drama of when he (spoilers) got the good reviews. Same deal with Norton during the preview, whether I laughed or not I thought the point was "Holy shit this star actor is wrecking the fucking show, how are they gonna deal with it?"

Oh well, guess I misjudged it.
RotatingHornSection
Well they are supposed to do BOTH, but I was just focusing on the fact that they were supposed to be comedic since you were questioning if the film was trying to make the audience laugh.
sonofaresiii
Right on, I understand it now, I guess it just didn't hit me that way. It didn't even occur to me that it was supposed to.
davey1212k
I think these days the groupings are BS. Like for the Golden Globes: Orange Is The New Black has PLENTY of dramatic parts. Same with Transparent. They are not outright comedies in my mind.
adsfkahsdf
Boyhood was really good. I would watch it again.

I'll edit in a second and see what else I've seen on the list.
adsfkahsdf
J/K. NEW POST.

I saw Snowpiercer. I wouldn't really recommend it. But it's on Netflix.

I really want to see Selma, Grand Budapest Hotel, and Foxcatcher.
?Rorshach?
Watched Grand Budapest Hotel on Tuesday and Boyhood last night.

Grand Budapest sort of surprised me. I generally like Wes Anderson well enough, but never consider myself a real Wes Anderson fan. I guess I feel like I can respect the fact that he's an absolute master who flawlessly communicates exactly the feel and aesthetic that he means to...I just don't usually care that much for said feel and aesthetic.

Moonrise Kingdom I liked a lot though and Grand Budapest I liked even more than that. I don't know if it's that because he's getting better/coming around to a more accessible style OR if it's just that finally I'm not surrounded by people gushing about him and over hyping his shit before I ever get a chance to check it out.

Anyway, bearing in mind that I still haven't seen either Birdman or American Sniper, this is my favorite for Best Picture.

Boyhood was also very good, though I feel like 60% of what made it so awesome was the unique and super dedicated filmmaking process. I thought the plot was good, but nothing especially new or phenomenal.

To be totally clear though, I don't mean to take anything way from what made this film so special either. Watching the actors actually age and the nods to real culture references of the time gave the film this very cool almost documentary like sense of plausibility and sincerity that I really loved...I just wish that it could have had something a little fresher to say in the process.
RotatingHornSection
I agree pretty much Dylan. The process is incredible. However, I thought that the main cog (the kid) was the least remarkable thing in the movie. I thought he had the weakest performance. On the other hand, he did seem like just a normal kid reacting to fairly normal stuff and that's really all the movie needed him to be.

I also thought the movie would have been just as good if they used different actors throughout, but who knows.

The documentary feel is something I felt too. It really did feel like these were real life drop ins on a real family. That is something you definitely DO NOT get in most film. I think that's a really understated achievement.
davey1212k
I really disliked the kid. He was pretty selfish and seemed detached from all of the people around him. Now that might've been the point, but he was still unappealing in character.

That said, I enjoyed the experience of watching the movie
RotatingHornSection
A lot of teens are selfish. I think his detachment was how he dealt with his rough upbringing (two drunken step fathers).
davey1212k
yeah and it totally was, and we all have a bit of it in us when we are in our adolescence, but I thought his was off the charts. Like when he was going off to college and couldn't understand why his Mom wanted him to take his first photograph and he didn't do it--I really didn't like this. It seemed like a diss to the person who showed him the most amount of love in his whole fucking life. Now the detachment is an understandable response to the situation he was in, but I felt like at the end I still wasn't sure if he was moving beyond this and "grew" as a person. Boyhood 2: Adulthood...stay tuned?

(side note--I didn't see the second father as such a bad guy besides the fact that he drank too much. He really didn't seem like an asshole in the scenes they gave him.)
yepyep
I thought the kid in Boyhood did a really good job. It was a very nostalgic feeling for me. He reminded me almost exactly of a very close friend I had growing up, selfishness detachedness, and all. Regarding the plot being kind of eh, I agree, but for me that was part of the brilliance of the movie. I think if there was some big engrossing plot line, it would've taken away from the idea that this was just a movie about a family growing up, and it would've made the movie feel too fake or manufactured.
?Rorshach?
QUOTE (davey1212k @ Jan 16 2015, 07:30 AM) *
(side note--I didn't see the second father as such a bad guy besides the fact that he drank too much. He really didn't seem like an asshole in the scenes they gave him.)


See this to me was the coolest part of the whole movie.

There was nothing wrong with that dude, but we all assumed the worst in him because of the monster that her first husband was...which is exactly what the protagonist and his mom did too.

Seriously, we never really see him having a drinking problem. He has a beer at dinner while he goes "you dress a little gay", which isn't exactly a nice thing to say, but it's pretty common dad bull shit and he never goes anywhere with it or loses his shit. Then he has a beer in his hands while he waits up for dude to get home after breaking curfew and chews him out a little bit about being disrespectful...which the kid totally is.

He never hits him or berates him or...anything. He's honestly just a step father trying to make the most of two fucked up people.

But we the viewer kind of go "oh man not again" as soon as we see him having a beer...which is exactly what the characters do too.
sonofaresiii
Interstellar didn't get even a nomination for cinematography, so like, wtf?
?Rorshach?
We did Birdman the other night.

That was definitely the movie I was the most excited about and when Alex said everyone loved it but him, that's usually a pretty strong indicator that I'm going to love it...but I seriously didn't care for it at all. I have a lot of respect for what it was, but it just wasn't really for me (a common thread with these Best Picture nominees it seems).

The cinematography was great. The whole super extended continuous follow shot was really impressive and I think did an excellent job of communicating the pace and insanity of the whole thing.

The cast was really terrific too. The intensity of all those monologue close ups was great and I loved the use of mirrors to get all that facial expression in every dialog.

That said, it just wasn't a premise that really resonated with me and while I get that it was supposed to be one of those "comedies but it's not funny" things, I didn't find it absurdist (or whatever) enough to get wrapped up in the whole thing.

It's my new "good movie, but not my favorite movie"
RotatingHornSection
Whiplash was awesome. JK Simmonds totally nailed his performance and I think he's got a really strong chance. I love how grounded the movie was especially compared to the more off the wall ones like Birdman and Budapest Hotel.

Got some of the vibes I got from Black Swan just seeing somebody really trying to excel in a craft I no nothing about but respect a lot when you see how much work these people throw into it. Felt like an earlier Aronofsky movie.
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