Tuesday, February 11, 2020


I binged nominated films before the Oscars but didn't have time to post about them all, so here's three:
Pretty satisfying movie experience, and an impressive technical achievement. It uses the basic movie imperative: to move, and the basic movie plot to achieve that: the quest to reach the goal before the movie ends. The illusion that the entire flick is filmed in one extremely long take is almost overwhelming at times (at other times it can feel like a one-trick pony, though the "trick" works), but mostly creates a tension that kept me anxious at times in that action movie visceral way that can be so exciting. Worth watching.
I didn't think I was interested in this story but watched it to see why it was nominated, and from the first scenes was knocked out by Charlize Theron's transformation into Meagan Kelly! You might think, two attractive ambitious blondes, what's to transform, watch and see. Somehow Theron got every aspect of the character's physicality, including and especially the voice, so accurately I forgot I was watching the actress and felt I was watching Kelly play herself. The other totally impressive performance was Margot Robbie's in a supporting role that easily could have won a mess of awards. Again, worth watching.
Like a lot of folks I couldn't figure out what this was about from the poster and trailer, but watching this political satire full of humor and tragedy was a unique trip. Along with PARASITE, I'd say JOJO RABBIT is the other most original movie of 2019. The fact that it was written and directed by a man of part Maori descent (thus his acceptance speech emphasizing indigenous peoples) who also co-stars as a caricature of Hitler, makes it even more exceptional. Plus Scarlett Johansson gives one of her most engaging performances ever. And the boy who plays the lead deserved his own Oscar! Again, well worth watching for my taste.

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