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In Reply to: RE: That year Oscars was a HUGE mistake in several categories... posted by TWB on April 07, 2020 at 09:13:40
WWII epic, "The Thin Red Line."
Blanchett's was a solid performance, though the film itself just didn't compete well against the far more original "Shakespeare in Love."
"Central Station," on the other hand, was an original story, brilliantly filmed, and Montenegro's character is simply unforgettable. It's an acting class. She does more with her eyes than most actors with their entire bodies.
It's a little shocking to realize Roberto Benigni is the ONLY actor in a foreign language film to have won the Oscar for Best Actor. Shocking that such a mediocre performance and actor won, and shocking that for almost a hundred years the Academy has neglected such an amazing army of talent.
I thought that SIL was a snooze fest and certainly Paltrow has NOT lived up to her award with other stellar performances where Blanchett delivers time and time again..The Oscars is a celebration of American films... NOT International films. I was disappointed with the Best Picture Oscar this year... What would be more appropriate IMO is to perhaps have a foreign film best actor, best actress etc, etc...that to me would make more sense... then I think performances like the one you mentioned would get more recognition.
It indeed is unfortunate that, overwhelmingly, American audiences can't seem to get over the hurdle of subtitles.
I appreciate Blanchett, but I place her in a box with other aloof and cold actresses, all of whom are talented, but not able to emote much: Nicole Kidman; Charlize Theron; Julianne Moore; Tilda Swinton.
Agreement on TTRL, but it most probably divided the "war film" vote and kept SPR from a win.
Anyhow, have you seen "Central Station?"
"E Burres Stigano?"
Barry Levinson directed... I'm watching THAT tomorrow! Thanks for the rec.!
No doubt that's why I liked it. You'll never think of the song, "Holding Out For A Hero" the same again. "Beavers and Ducks".
"E Burres Stigano?"
and, believe it or not, is worth a second viewing some time down the line.
"E Burres Stigano?"
and speaking of Blanchett, if you have not seen Blue Jasmine you should check it out... her performance there was nothing short of amazing. Personally, I would put Blanchett in a different category than those you mentioned as IMO she is light years more talented than any one of those...As far as Parasite goes, I really object to Foreign films being considered for Best Picture and as I said the Oscars is an award to celebrate American films not the foreign film community.... This year was just another example of the march to globalization. A HUGE misstep IMO....
can't compete on the world stage, I'd say it doesn't belong on it.
"OSCAR:" we're happy being second best?
The audiences that vote for the academy awards are Academy members - actors, actresses, directors, screen writers etc.
The problem isn't subtitles but the sheer number of films being released world wide every year. Unlike some forum posters - some of those people actually have lives and go to ritzy parties and are sleeping with movie stars or hanging out at the Heff Mansion or whatever is now passing for the Heff Mansion. They are NOT sitting home watching 600 films a year. In other words they have a lot better things to do than watch movies.
They get a voting card and a time period to make a selection and I know that some of them hand it off to their "helpers" - the maid or the cook or the butler or the pool boy or the dominatrix or their neighbor and let those people tick a box.
Hell for all we know Life is Beautiful won because people liked the title the best and ticked the box.
This article is interesting because it points out that at the time Weinstein ran a good campaign (spent a lot of money) to get people to consider voting for his movie Shakespeare in Love and to drive home some of the points several critics noted about SPR - that beyond that opening sequence - arguably the best war picture opening every made - the rest of the film was merely so-so.
I personally think that's a bit unfair because that opening is a tough act to follow - but it was the criticism at the time. Weinstein argued that SiL was great for the entire movie. It appeals to a literary crowd and since many actors are literary types and quite knowledgeable about Shakespeare they would get the "in jokes" and layered levels that John Q public might not. In other words they could appreciate it more than most.
I remember I liked SiL a lot back then but have not gotten around to watching it a second time.
This article explains why he though Shakespeare in Love is a vastly better movie that SPR. Maybe I'll re-watch them both.
merely look at critic favorites, lauded directors' efforts, etc. For many years, I attended PIFF (Portland Int'l. Film Festival) and the curators all speak to one another, to folks in other countries to cull the consensus bests. "Film Comment" magazine is a great resource for those seeking the best films from around the world.
Well critics are not necessarily any sort of gold standard either - directors choose best directors. They also select who gets those life-time achievement awards. So when some "nobody" on a forum starts on that XYZ director is an overrated hack I often laugh and wonder what they have actually done artistically that was worth a crap.
Film is art - it's different than reviewing cars, stereos, or toasters.
To be a good art/film critic they have to have a pretty wide palette in that they can fairly evaluate all genres no matter the subject.
Take Horror - many of the good ones offer some commentary on society, mankind (humanity), consumerism, (Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead and George Romero in general) etc. The ability to see through the visceral (ie; past the gore) to what was actually the theme can only be done by critics at a higher level than the "horror movies are shlock" types. People with literature degrees tend to trump people who just know how to work the F-stop on a camera. But if the critic can't see past some red paint passing for blood then that critic is useless IMO.
Satire (JoJo Rabbit) runs flat on the literal minded (so does dark humor). So they frankly don't "get" Pulp Fiction's humour (or even realize it is a comedy) or probably any of Tarantino's other films. Do these critics even get that many of them are linked from film to film that there are set pieces that are carried over from film to film - the same white Honda car is in Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill and Death Proof or that Vincent Vega in Pulp Fiction is the brother of Vic Vega in Reservoir Dogs or that Kill Bill vol 1 and 2 are movies that the characters in Pulp Fiction would be watching in their "universe" - Mia Wallace is playing Beatrix Kiddo in Kill Bill. Hell those Kill Bill movies were set up in Pulp Fiction in the $5 milkshake scene. The dance scene in Pulp Fiction is taken from the movie 8 1/2 not, mistakenly assumed, a prior John Travolta picture.
Dark Humour, Science Fiction, Satire typically demands more from an audience. That is why when I see people gravitate to "pretty" cinematography and films built on camera angles with few words and more pictures I am less impressed with them as critics.
Even the well intentioned critics and sometimes well written reviews of Satirical film miss the point. The Hitler character in JoJo Rabbit comes from the mind of a 10 year old vision of what Hitler is representing to him in the absence of his father - a monster in the guise of an imaginary friend. He is not "actually Hitler" so it's an important differentiation that again fails to be realized by critics who operate in a black and white literal mind. If one laughs at the imaginary friend Hitler they are not laughing at Hitler.
I mean it should be obvious when "the main reason they present Hitler this way, however, is to deconstruct fascist thinking. Jojo can't even tie his shoes, and he sees the Third Reich in the way a young American boy would picture Navy Seals. Through him, WWII is almost a fairy tale adventure — there's even a scene where he sips watered-down soup across from Hitler, gorging on a roasted unicorn." https://badgerherald.com/artsetc/2019/11/21/jojo-rabbit-is-a-jaw-dropping-take-on-satire/
Although the film is set in the Nazi era, it, in fact, laughs in the face of present-day hatemongers and institutionalised propaganda machinery.
Jojo Rabbit uses Germany as an allegory to convey what indoctrinators and manipulators can do with the conscience of today's youth.
And what is also the point of satire is to make the viewer think and feel uncomfortable about what they are seeing. A good satire isn't supposed to be well loved by all. It should have people rail against it as they railed against The Producers back in 1967.
"Dark Humour, Science Fiction, Satire typically demands more from an audience." "More?" So Antonioni films, all of them are first-and-foremost visual art, demand "less"?
Bela Tarr? Tarkovsky? Kubrick?
Perhaps you don't like films of these very, very visual directors?
Some feel that what separates film from literature or theater is what makes it a true art form: the visual dimension is the key. I appreciate films that are well-made, period.
There are many kinds of critics and I think if one reads a wide selection and reads compendia of their opinions--- one can get a good general idea of a film's worth.
Obviously film is a visual medium and it is often integral to a film - for that matter so is music. Whether it be a blockbuster like Jaws or creating a claustrophobic space in Das Boot. Spectacle isn't irrelevant but it should serve character, theme, and not be the main attraction. Films that tend to stay relevant and that are still liked by modern younger and smart younger audiences are those that tend to be strong in character. This is especially true for films that were blockbusters back in the day. Jaws holds up because of the three main protagonists not because the shark effects are good (they're not).
A lot of visual directors tend to make themselves known like "look at this great shot" and that usually comes off as some pretentious director trying too hard to be original instead of serving a good character or story. Perhaps, because in both domains the film is weak so the spectacle has to make up for that failing. Avatar is an example of an atrocious movie where the director is throwing everything he possibly can at the screen to put lipstick on a pig.
I do agree with you though that film does not have to fit in a round hole - you can make a visual film and it can be very good and in many genres from Anime to horror to whatever really. The semi-hit example that springs to mind is Run Lola Run which relies almost entirely on visual style and direction and has little character development and plot but relies on pacing and visuals and it's a pretty exciting film. Kubrick is a fair example but I still say his movies still have a lot of meat to them and his camera work enhances but doesn't typically detract from the events.
The absurdity aspects of JOJO run through many currents that feed the rich river of satire.
The Yorkie scenes are... pure gold.
This movie continues to strongly resonate, it's pure brilliance.
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"Once this was all Black Plasma and Imagination" -Michael McClure
My sister knew an assistant for, I believe, Lauren Bacall, who was a voting member of the academy. As I recall, the Academy, which actually picks the nominees, sends voting members copies of all the nominated films, and then the voting members vote. I don't believe they pick the nominees. In any event, in this example, the assistant, not Lauren Bacall, viewed the films and then submitted Lauren Bacall's vote to the academy.
And even the ones who do spend the time to vote - if you're an actor and you worked for and liked the director of picture A and you worked for and thought the director was an ass and he is also up for the award - well I think you're voting for your buddy.
I tend more to look at the nominees and decide for myself - what is that old saying "it's an honor to be nominated" and perhaps that truly is the honor.
There just never is consensus - The New York Film Critics Circle chose the Irishman as best film - and maybe that makes sense if you grew up in New York. I like gangster films - GoodFellas is one of my 10 favorite films and I liked several other Scorcese films but the Irishman to me was good but not great. I would not have nominated it.
I have a film director friend who is working with Steven Spielberg and Aaron Sorkin on the upcoming movie the Trial of the Chicago 7. He was the guy who pushed me to see JoJo Rabbit. Which is the movie I wound up wanting to win best picture. His favorite film though was Parasite.
He is about 15 years younger than me and from the UK. All of these things influence a person's vote. I can't tell you how many people say that Citizen Kane is the best film ever made - by anyone from any country. I have struggled through it 3 times to try and get into it. It's the same for Casablanca. I do not see the greatness in story, dialogue or performance to be blunt. Cinematography is spectacle which for me carries less weight and it did for Plato as well.
Although it does seem that most of the reviewers who rave were alive at the time of release and saw it on the big screen. So a 75 year old who saw some of these era films at the time will have a different take on them and were heavily impacted by them at the time.
I can watch 1970s Tom Baker Doctor Who to this day because I grew up on the show when I lived in Wales - "Would you like a Jelly Baby?" This was rip roaring time and space gold I tell you. Ask anyone who is 20 years old to watch it and they will think they're watching Plan 9 from Outer Space.
So I give up now. If something I like gets a nomination or any win in any category I am happy for the people who made the film because they made something that made me enjoy watching it. I don't get pissed if it didn't win. I mean almost always my choice hasn't won.
JoJo Rabbit got some nominations - it won best adapted screenplay and several awards from other outlets.
I remember the 1994 Academy Awards - Pulp Fiction and Shawshank Redemption were my two favorite movies that year. In that order. And it wasn't really close to me - these were head and shoulders better than the other films nominated and I ranked Quiz Show next.
But I knew Pulp Fiction had no chance to win because it didn't really have a powerhouse actor at that time - a relative unknown as a director. And the subject matter had a guy with a watch up his ass for FIVE LONG years and a store owner with a dungeon who brings out the gimp to rape black men! LOL - There was no way in hell that film was going to win. Now maybe but not back then with the old guard voting.
No one saw the Shawshank Redemption and it was a prison movie. Though it became the most rented film in movie history so it got the bucks back later.
That left Quiz Show (a movie that also went largely unseen) and also didn't carry a big name cast.
Four Weddings and a Funeral. The token throw in Brit comedy or Period Piece movie that almost never wins.
That left Forrest Gump - an amiable film the shows that even some dumb schmuck can become hugely rich and successful. That plays in the US like gangbusters. The dumbest person can win - gee it was certainly foreshadowing.
I definitely appreciated Citizen Kane and A Streetcar Named Desire more after seeing them on the big screen during summer film fests.
We know the best movie winner.
differently-abled characters so much? "Sling Blade?" C'mon! "Rainman?" "I Am Sam?" I'm sure I'm forgetting several more...
European Apex awards, is still a mystery
"E Burres Stigano?"
wasn't sure anyone would remember that character (and the associated warning to actors)
However, that would involve using the verboten "R" word....
"E Burres Stigano?"
I know. That's why I referred to the movie. Glad the reference wasn't too cryptic
I wonder how many Asian man-servants and maids were given the task of watching the sent tapes this year.... hence the winner....Parasite! I'll bet it happened.. ALOT!
a foreign film, viewer-wise. You liked JoJo? I just can't laugh at Hitler as a comic character.
it's not my kind of movie... I did on the advice of a few close friends watch JoJo Rabbit.. It was just okay, it had a few memorable moments in it and yes I did laugh when the boy kicked AH through the window... It had an interesting "look" to it.. LOL... in the style of "haute auteur"... I laugh when people scramble to call something "art". Again, it was okay.. I'm glad I got to see it, But IMO opinion it got the recognition that it deserved. YMMV.
So, if you've not seen, "Central Station," it's hard to respond much to the original thread idea?
I remember liking SIL a lot.Maybe because I like Shakespeare a lot too. I appreciated the acting too. I have to say I felt dizzy watching SPR. I think Life is Beautiful won thru sympathy vote and for the terrible sadness generated.
I like GP's acting a lot. I liked her in Great Expectations also even though the reviews were not that good.
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