Sunday, February 26, 2012

Oscar Predictions 2012: Zero Hour

With the 84th Academy Awards only hours away, I have decided to reveal my predictions, ranked from most likely to win through least likely to win. I took on all the categories, some of which I have not seen all the nominees for and are thus wild guesses. This list does not represent what I feel should win, but are the conclusions reached given the numbers I ran, the voters I polled, and my keen natural instincts. Check below the jump to see all the predictions, and happy viewing!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Smash Cuts: Hanna

Hanna (Wright, 2011)

Does it count as a revenge fantasy if everyone is terrible? Well, you know, except for the times where they aren't. But who cares about those times, we need the testosterone to flow! We need to see that you have balls! Balls! Action! Killing! Balls! You really have to admire the balls of what is likely the year's best action film - I mean really - simply because it takes the conceit of bringing this tiny fourteen year old female and turns her in to a force of unstoppable brutality. This is probably what The Hunger Games is like, except good. You have big shoes to fill. Figuratively anyway, Saorise Ronan probably doesn't have abnormally large feet. I know she doesn't cry! Except - of course - when she does. By moving at such a break neck pace it's hard to get bogged down in all the plot intricacies or the weak characters. We just need to cut.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Smash Cuts: The Secret World Of Arrietty

The Secret World Of Arrietty (Yonebayashi, 2012)

Cultures clash, worlds collide, while the trivial takes on the weight of the universe. Assuming it has a weight and we all aren't just floating along. But perhaps we do float along, movies carry us away into these worlds where the magic becomes real. Where we can forget the grim reality lurking in the backdrop. Our rats are only possible threats, we worry for naught when there are adventures to be shared. Or perhaps just borrowed. It's hard to gaze upon the foreign without interacting, for the imagination to build up a reality that just cannot be true, but these moments of hesitation are truly the ones that reveal who we really are, the fleeting glimpses stretched out until the reality is washed away by the dream.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Smash Cuts: The Descendants

It has been a while, friends. I have been watching a ton of films in preparation for awards season, and the hectic life of grad school has once again caught up with me. When you spend the majority of your day writing for pleasure, sometimes you need a break. But breaks are for pleasure too, right? So while I continue to go through films that I won't have the time to give proper reviews of, I figured I would test out some capsule reviews and thoughts about what I am watching. Starting off with the latest from Alexander Payne:

The Descendants (Payne, 2011)

Hawaii isn't just some paradise where we go to forget all of our troubles. It's a place with actual (beautiful) people with real world problems. Sometimes when we are looking down the gun we don't stop to consider that the gun might actually just be looking back at us. We can't run away from our problems, despite how goofy George Clooney may make that particular action seem. We have to actually run to the problems, face them head on. Sometimes it's hard to know whether we should care about our comatose wife who needs the plug pulled, our bratty kids, or that multi-million dollar land deal. See, we're not so different after all.