Tuesday, January 22, 2008

All Movie Coverage, No Goals -- by J.O.B.

Alright, I guess it's up to me to try and set it all straight. There are only a couple of movies that are up for major Oscars that I haven't seen, and the only potential winner out of that small crop is Cate Blanchett in I'm Not There, and I'll probably see that in the next week. Might as well give my top 6 of movies from 2007. Why 6? Because when you give a top 5, people always wonder what the 6th is.

6) Charlie Wilson's War. This was a very close call and just barely edged out 3:10 To Yuma. I got over the shot of seeing Tom Hanks and boobs in the same scene to be riveted by the give and take between he and Philip Seymour Hoffman. As exaggerated as the movie handled the actual story, I got way into it. Hanks was classic, Roberts was properly over-the-top. If they both didn't have roles that seemed so easy to slip into, they would have cause to feel slighted on the nomination front.

5) Atonement. There is a reason I avoid movies like this. Usually because I hate being trapped in sappy love stories. This is a love story, but it's unlike many I've tried to skip. I tend to enjoy movies that make me hate a character and this one didn't fail. It was just a very well orchestrated tale. I'd rank it higher except the ending pissed me off. I'm okay with endings that are either happy or sad, but the way this one ended just ticked me off. I can't explain why without spoiling it, and I know a lot of people are okay with the ending, so I didn't write it off just because of that.

4) Juno. I loved Knocked Up, but if I had to choose one pregnancy tale to be a fan of in 2007 (and be sure, these two will be linked for their subject matter) it has to be Juno. It's cute, the dialogue is witty and real, and Ellen Page and Michael Cera have adult, movie chemistry. Jason Bateman is the new comeback kid and the script was the first written by Diablo Cody, a former stripper, who managed to get Jason Reitman (Ivan's son) to make it less than a year after she finished it.

3) Michael Clayton. Ahead of Juno and Atonement you ask? Have you seen Michael Clayton? Holy crap was this movie intense and intelligent. I read a little about it before I saw it and was worried that it wouldn't really go anywhere. Boy was I wrong! Tom Wilkinson is a real threat for the Best Supporting award and although George Clooney was incredible as the title character, there is too much competition for Best Actor. The mental battle between him and Tilda Swinton's character in the midst of showing the depths that Big Business will go is moving.

2) No Country For Old Men. It's not going to happen this way. NCFOM is going to edge out There Will Be Blood for best picture, most likely because of the way it canvasses the struggles of 3 different men so brilliantly. Javier Bardem is great, but honestly, no more amazing a performance than Brolin or Jones. That's not an indictment of Bardem as much as it is a recommendation of Brolin and Jones. I don't know why we don't see Woody Harrelson in more movies, but we need to. The Coen brothers are to drama what the Farrelly brothers are to comedy. You can just count on their take on an idea to be right on every time.

1) There Will Be Blood. I expected good. I got great. The same reason I think this movie will win Best Picture is the same reason why it probably won't: Daniel Day-Lewis. I don't want to say he carries the move, but he's in practically every seen and he is the story. The Best Actor winners from the past 5 years should all give their awards to him for his performance in this movie alone. Paul Dano is incredible in two roles and Dillon Freasior shows maturity well beyond his young years. Very rarely do I watch a movie in which I don't even have a guess as to what the main character is going to do next. This was certainly one of them.

I should be seeing Sweeney Todd and/or The Diving Bell And The Butterfly soon. I'll let you know if either affect my rankings ...


Skurny said...

I also saw "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead"...which wasn't great overall, but is worth seeing for good performances by PSH and Albert Finney...and an almost constantly nude Marisa Tomei! Ethan Hawke plays a pussy, I'm shocked.

AngryWhiteMan said...

So... What's your #7?