Catching up with the award-nominated movies and performances for this year and I am already totally blown away. This is one of the best years in a long time. Especially acting-wise - both ensemble and individual work. If you’re a cinephile, and/or mad about acting, here are the top films I heartily recommend you see as soon as you can (in no particular order):
12 Years a Slave - So. Good. Not traditional in it’s structure, and loaded with mind-blowing performances from almost every single actor (minus one in particular, and the few shitty comedians who snuck in there at the beginning who thought they were doing a ‘stache-twirling sketch on SNL).
Dallas Buyers Club - If you are avoiding this film because you hate Matthew McConaughey then you are missing the chance to see the best thing he has ever done in his entire life. Same with Jared Leto. Gonna give 12 Years a serious run for their actor-awards-money.
American Hustle - Everything - direction, script, cinematography, ensemble - is seriously great. Funny and dark. And everyone is excellent. Every single performance is stellar. Great cinematography: It’s like a visual-homage to other movies set in that era - but on steroids.
August Osage County - Meryl frigging Streep and Julia Roberts absolutely murder this film and take no prisoners (all good things). Truly good performances. Excellent adaptation from the play, which was also written by Tracy Letts. All the performances (minus one HORRIBLY miscast and ill-equipped Scotsman… ) are just wonderful. But Meryl and Julia. Oh holy wow.
Blue Jasmine - Not a great film, but an outrageously great performance by Cate Blanchett. FML so good.
Labor Day - Meh film, good performance by Kate Winslet.
Films I have yet to see: Prisoners, Wolf of Wall Street, Her, Saving Mrs Banks, Captain Phillips, Rush, Nebraska, Mandela, All is Lost, Inside Llewyn Davis, Enough Said, Fruitvale Station (err… that’s a lot of film… )
And decent movies that you should watch but aren’t necessarily as important as the aforementioned: Gravity, Philomena.
(photo credit: AFI’s Top Ten)
A Brief Word on Performance Integrity
Sometime in the 20s, famous actors Alfred Lundt and Lynn Fontanne were workshopping a play in Boston. After Lundt delivered an innocuous line where he asked for a cup of tea, the crowd erupted in laughter. However, as he tried to recreate the moment in subsequent performances, he struggled to get another laugh. At wits end one night he asked Lynn why? What could have happened? “My Dear,” she said “It’s simple. The first time you asked for a cup of tea. Now you’re asking for a laugh.”
If at any point over the coming days, weeks, and months to come, you find yourself confused as to how to navigate the thicket of pictures of Nelson Mandela coming at you in every country in the world, bear in mind this salient fact of history: it was once illegal in South Africa to have a picture of Nelson Mandela in your home.
Very true. Although it’s equally as true that when I read an account of a life in which everyone is inexplicably mean to a faultless narrator, I start to wonder about how well the narrator actually perceives the world about them…
Yeah, the kids in those Series of Unfortunate Events books were real assholes.
"i don’t like the new ms. marvel"
"but i’m not islamophobic"
let me tell you something buddy at this point in time the only information we have about her is that she’s muslim if you dislike her already i have some news for you
Actually, we have one other piece of information about HER.
PJ Harvey: The gnarliest, lady-badass.