Well, it's the event of the year that I love, Academy Awards! Hooray for Hollywood and small independant movies. I decided to go for it this year and tried to see as many Oscar nominated movies as I could stomach. In the past, I saw The Wrestler which was a session in fortitude because it involved barbed wire, blood, and slow motion blows to the body. (And for some reason I was strangely drawn to Mickey Rourke) After I saw Black Swan, it made perfect sense that it was the same director because there were so many cringe worthy, body mutilating moments in Ms. Portman's movie as well, but very well acted!
I have to say stomach these movies because the Academy nominates movies that I just can't make it through such as Inglorious Bastards, the Hurt Locker and Precious. I rented the first two last year and could not make it through the blood, gore and violence and/or the suspense awaiting blood, gore and violence. And then there are certain genres that I just don't care for at all, like Westerns (True Grit) or subconscious mind game thrillers (Inception-made it through ten whole minutes) I am a lightweight when it comes to blood and I accept that wholly. So I was loving the fact that Toy Story 3, The Kids are All Right, The Social Network and The Kings Speech were in contention.
So this year, I got really excited about seeing "Rabbit Hole" where Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart play grieving parents whose young son was killed in an automobile accident. Fun stuff. (And if you are keeping tabs, it was not nominated but Nicole was) I get off on watching depressing psychological drama especially if it involves a group therapy scene. I accept that wholly about myself as well. Also, on this year's list is Blue Valentine which is watching a young couple's 6 year marriage crumble. More fun stuff but so very well acted. That is the way I felt about Black Swan - the crazy psychosexual thriller that made me laugh outloud inappropriately but it was so well acted.
Also nominated this year was another boxing movie, The Fighter, with two brothers, an overprotective mother who babies the one that is addicted to crack cocaine and ignores the one who is trying to make something of his life. Great dysfunctional family, so right up my alley. But yet this was an upper movie and less cringe worthy than the movie about ballet. I wish I could type something more profound here, but go figure.
As I can't handle waiting 2 hours for a guy to cut his arm off in 127 Hours, the last movie in contention I will watch before this weekend's Oscars is Winter's Bone. *SPOILER ALERT* George and I settle in to watch it on DVD this weekend. I don't know anything about the movie and wonder what we are in for in comparison to losing a child, watching a marriage crumble, or dysfunctional families with crack addiction.
Well, we have a winner. This movie is set in the rural Ozarks, and the main character is a 17 year old girl, Dee, who is saddled with caring for her much younger 2 siblings in the poorest conditions possible. She teaches them how to shoot and skin a squirrel for dinner among other things. The mom is apparently catatonic and the dad cooks up drugs in a meth lab occasionally. And if you think Melissa Leo disappears into the role as the blue collar chain smoking Lowell, MA boxing mom, these people are THE real deal as it was shot on location. It is very suspenseful as Dee has to find her missing dad because he put the house up as bond money and if he doesn't show up for his court date the house is lost. She travels around trying to find her dad, dead or alive and she is rejected by all persons she comes into contact with and not nicely at that. But strangely I'm intrigued. The girl ends up in a boat in a lake (and it's winter-now you are going to understand the title) with two women telling her where her dad's body is. Here's the kicker, they whip out a chain saw for her to cut off his hands. And not just one hand will do because some outlaws will cut off just one to keep the law from coming after them. This is not where I saw this going. Winter's Bone. Wow.
I'm looking forward to the ceremony. It seems like it will be a little different with Frankoway as the hosts. At first, when they announced the hosts, I thought, huh? And now after seeing a few promo clips, it's more like hmmm, this could be interesting. Hooray for Hollywood.