Thursday, March 06, 2014

A Few Days Late- But Better Than Never

I usually spend some time talking about the Academy Awards. Well, I didn't get around to it this year. As has been said by many, this was a truly exceptional year of great movies, great performances, great screenplays. I didn't manage to see all the nominees this year out of lack of time and not being able to see them when they were in the theaters.

One I didn't see because I wasn't sure I wanted to see it on the big screen was the winner both historically as well as awards. It was of course:

  • Best Picture: "12 Years a Slave"
It was nothing short of heart-warming to see it win the top award as well as screenplay and supporting actress. (See below.) We have come a long way as the moment of Sydney Poitier getting an ovation proved. I do  hope to see the movie on the small screen where the violence can seem a little less overpowering.

Then there are the four acting winners, of which I saw three.:
  • Actor: Matthew McConaughey for "Dallas Buyer's Club" (Very well deserved and a career-defining performance. He was also equally amazing in "Mud." Now I am not so sure of his performance at the Oscars. A little full of himself? You think? Bruce Dern in "Nebraska" was also highly deserving.)
  • Actress: Cate Blanchett for "Blue Jasmine" (How do you choose between her and Meryl Streep giving such overwhelming performances of two very different women caught in their own insanities? This is one of those where a tie would not have been a surprise.)
  • Supporting Actor: Jared Leto for "Dallas Buyer's Club". (Clearly a remarkable performance!!!  But I must admit I had a certain wish for Minnesotan, Barkhad Abdi in "Captain Phillips")
  • Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong'o for "12 Years a Slave" (Didn't see the movie, as I said above, but what a woman of grace!!)
Adding to the historical nature of the evening and the whole motion picture industry was:
  • Director: Alphonso Cuaron for "Gravity"(
Another I didn't see for no particular reason. I guess I will one of these days. But then again I have still never seen "Titanic."
  • Documentary: "20 Feet from Stardom" (I saw two excellent musical documentaries this year. "Stardom" was incredible and told quite a story. I personally like "Muscle Shoals" better as it had a different level of exploration of the place of music in our world and in individuals. I think it was a deeper movie. It, however, was an excellent non-nominee.
I guess that takes care of the year in movies. Again, quite a year with some really great hours being challenged and having my world opened. Can't wait to see what might be ahead this year.

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