Just under one month ago I set out to complete an Oscar Challenge. The challenge was to watch all 9 movies that are nominated for Best Picture prior to the show. I did not quite make it through all 9 but I did see 6 of them which I've got to say, I'm quite pleased with! I suppose there is still a chance I could see one or two more before the show on Sunday night, but I highly doubt it. I saw: Silver Linings Playbook, Les Misérables, Django Unchained, Beast of the Southern Wild, Zero Dark Thirty and Argo. Each one of these movies was good in their own way but I must say, after seeing Les Misérables, I felt like it was winner. I still feel that way. It's not that it was the best of the lot, because they are all VERY different movies (and this one is 100% musical, not one word spoken, so you have to like that), it's just that it was incredibly well done and affected me long after it was over. It was excellent. That being said, if Django won I would fully understand. It also impressed me.
Did you see any? Any predictions?
For my brief review of each movie, scroll on down, but I want to first share another "Funny Friday" video that is quite topical. I'm pretty sure it's hilarious if you've not seen Les Misérables but if you have, all the better!
Let the Reviews Begin! (in the order I saw them)
Silver Linings Playbook - Great movie. Good, strong, unique story and incredible acting. Prior to this movie I was not a Jennifer Lawrence fan, but I became one after seeing this. Although I really liked it, and can't point out any flaw, I don't feel like it will/should win Best Picture.
Les Misérables - After this was finished, I found my self consumed with what I just saw and was sure, even though I'd not finished my challenge, that this would win best picture. I still believe that. You have to like musicals to enjoy this as there is zero talking, but I love musicals and this musical happens to be my favourite. The movie did not disappoint.
Django Unchained - Another great flick. You do have to like Tarintino in order to enjoy this movie, and if you do, you will love it too! Typical of his work you are constantly visually stimulated by his creativity, and you feel like he has shown you the world as he imagines it. As for the story, it is thought provoking and riveting. To compare it to one of his previous films, I would definitely say Inglorious Bastards style as opposed to a Kill Bill. If this won best picture I would not be surprised or disappointed.
Beasts of the Southern Wild - This movie was definitely more on the artistic side. It's not one that I would necessarily recommend but that's mostly because I don't think it would appeal to a broad audience. You'd have to like a certain kind of movie AND be in a certain kind of mood I think. The first half was VERY artsy, but I really enjoyed the story in the second half.
Zero Dark Thirty - Very tough subject matter detailing the events that followed 9/11 but it was an exceptional movie that was very tastefully done. Jessica Chastain is nominated for her role in this and I was blown away by her performance. I'm thinking she might win.
Argo - As everyone probably knows, this movie is based on a true story. I knew that going in but was not really familiar with the story itself. I thought it was riveting. I also found myself fully engaged and at the edge of my seat the whole time! It was really well told and the acting was superb. I had heard from a couple of people who saw it in the theatre that it was a little long (as in they could have cut out at least 20 minutes by editing it a bit better) but I didn`t really feel that way - likely because I was watching it from the comfort of my own couch! :)