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February 20, 2009

Open movie thread: Oscar (or non-Oscar) edition

Movie camera

The Style section in today's Washington Post devotes a lengthy article to people who commit to seeing every Oscar-nominated movie, which is kind of funny, as I would estimate that these people make up about 0.00001 percent of the U.S. population. Most of my evidence is anecdotal, but between the answers we're getting in our poll (currently 63.2 percent for "Wouldn't watch [the ceremony] on a dare) and articles like this one -- sent around by Roberto with an eyeroll so loud that you probably heard it from where you're sitting -- it's hard to avoid the impression that interest in the Oscars continues to wane. I guess we'll see for sure when the ratings come in next week.

So if you're not among those marathon moviegoers making a last-minute dash between Frost/Nixon and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (or, as Roberto dubbed it, Brad Pitt Wears Really Cool Make-up), but you are in the mood to see a movie -- either current or classic -- this weekend, tell us what you'll be watching instead. Me, I'm going to see Hotel for Dogs, because my sister wants to go, and because I hear it's a pretty happy dog movie, not an "Oh no Mommy, they shot Old Yeller!" dog movie. I don't do those anymore. (And if Hotel does turn out to be one of them, my sister will RUE THE DAY.) And of course, part 2 of Oliver Twist on Sunday night. How about you?

Alternatively, if you've been watching and enjoying the Oscar-nominated films, feel free to tell us why we're a bunch of lowbrow anti-intellectual Bugs-Bunny-watchers. There's room for all sorts of viewers here!

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Jason Ibrahim

The other night we watched "Yours, Mine and Ours" with Henry Fonda and Lucille Ball. It was pretty entertaining, but also had a life-affirming message that was encouraging.

This weekend we will be watching lessons 1 and 2 of The Truth Project (http://www.thetruthproject.org/). *Very* exciting.


Most of the newer films (in the last 5-10 years) that I have liked or loved do NOT make it into the Oscars, it seems.

NOTE: The last 10-14 years, I have watched lots of FAMILY movies---which seem mainly on the peripheral EDGE of Hollywood Oscar time. In no special order

Various Disney tales like Beauty & the Beast, Aladdin, Lion King

Pixars like The Incredibles (they used my PARENTS--so it seems--as models for the Mom & Dad superheros)

WallE---WOW! True love instead of.....the savage surface stuff...

And Remains of the Day, Secondhand Lions (here, my grandpas did not get cast as they're both dead. My dad must not have called them back for his casting call)

The remake of Enchanted April (which did get a nomination but a very shallow other nominee got the Oscar).

BORING BORING----So I will yet again ignore the Oscars as I have done so for many years.

Will they someday figure it out? They are drifting farther out of touch with reality & much of their audienc!


I vote with vikingmother for "Remains of the Day". Subtlety and thoughtfulness to a degree that seems out of place, it's so rare these days.

I liked "Flyboys" in spite of the realistic violence and historical anachronisms. Movies can be made that appeal to both males and females; it's not necessary to have "action pictures" and "chick flicks" as two distinct genres. Plus, the ending was a distinct surprise.

And I laughed loudly enough at "What's Opera, Doc?" to get dirty looks in the theater. Only Pixar makes 'em like that anymore.

Jason Taylor

Red October had great characters, great techiness and suprisingly good music. It bears the limit that submarine warfare is so intricate that it really can't be captured in a movie. But all sub movies have the same problem.

Master and Commander does a great job and captures the spirit of the times very well.

Moses: Prince of Egypt simply has great songs. By the way, am I the only one who has noticed that the Death Angel in Prince of Egypt looks almost exactly like Cecil B DeMille's Death Angel?

Gladiator had a good beginning and ending, but it's middle dragged on. And I don't see why they needed to flub up the battle scene at the beginning. A volley of javelins("Oh for the stout pilum in the stout Roman hand")would fit the rule of cool just as well as the flaming arrows and be more realistic.

Diane Singer

I only care whether "Slumdog" wins best pic, and I can read about that on Monday morning. I'd rather watch paint dry than this year's Oscars.

Kim Moreland

Okay Gina, How was Hotels for Doggies? Is your sister's name MUD? ;-)

Gina Dalfonzo

No, she's off the hook. :-) It was a very cute movie, and though it had some moments that were sad, things turned out fine. Of course one had to suspend disbelief to the breaking point and beyond, but then that's not so uncommon with kids' movies.

Jason, "Yours, Mine, and Ours" is a favorite with both Kim and me!

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