Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Theatre, Life, Movies, and Bloggin'

Hello movie world!

You may have noticed my dismal absence from this blog (if you're one of the zero people who reads this, anyway) and there are a few excuses. First and foremost, computer problems are the main cause, I suppose. I was without internet for over a week as my computer was having some serious issues. All is fixed now, though. Goody!

Suspect number two is THEATRE. No, worry not, I'm still planning on living out a life of movies and movie related shizz (I am moderating into Film and Electronic Arts this semester... hopefully...), but I am taking a theatre class entitled Directing Seminar this semester that is joyfully eating my life. I'm quite pleased to say that this is probably my favourite class this semester. Currently, I am directing a scene from A Doll's House with two lovely actors as Nils Krogstad and Christina Linden. We have six hours of rehearsal a week. I'm also directing/co-directing/performing in a Disney Musical Revue, so that's going to tack on an additional eight hours of rehearsal a week, at minimum, starting this week (directing meant that I had to be involved in auditions and casting and blah blah blah). But the directing seminar is great fun. The book is incredibly useful (for film directing in many respects as well, in my opinion) and rehearsals have been productive. I love making lists and organizing, and planning for rehearsals like that is fab. I've got stuff to prepare for my rehearsals this weekend for the Disney thing too.

But even though I may not have been blogging, I have been seeing movies and doing plenty of reading about the awards season. I finally saw Crazy Heart this past weekend. I also made my first video project (which kinda blew) and the second one is due next Tuesday. Personal life just keeps creeping up in here doesn't it? Well, that does make sense, since I hope my personal life eventually equates the lives I love discussing in this blog.

In the television realm, I finally managed to catch up on Caprica when I was home this past weekend. Good, good show. Very smart. Great characters. I'm really looking forward to more. I'm not as into it as I am, say, into Chuck or even True Blood, but I do watch it with a great interest for the moment, until it furthers my attention (I'm sure at some point it will truly captivate me, but for now, I'm enjoying the ride nonetheless). Chuck has been continuing to be fantastic this season. Chuck is my new favourite show to recommend to everyone. Unlike the other NBC show I used to watch, Chuck has a trustworthy team of writers and showrunners behind it and they haven't let me down for two and a half seasons. For the moment, they have my complete trust. Josh Schwartz knows what he's doing.

In the Oscar race, you can't believe how pumped I am with all that The Hurt Locker's accomplished. The night the DGAs happened, I had two dreams, one in which Kathryn Bigelow won and the other in which James Cameron won and I was so relieved when I woke up to find out that Bigelow was the winner. She deserves it. The Hurt Locker is the best of those movies nominated for Best Picture (even though I put Up above it in my favourite movies list, that doesn't reflect what I think is the best movie of the year, just my personal taste).

There have been several other revelations to me. Like how much The Blind Side annoys me as I think about it more. Not that it's a bad movie, but it's so simplistic and complacent. Maybe Invictus would've been better as a nominee. But The Blind Side is more popular, which is really the only reason I give it a leg up in my mind. Also, how much I want Star Trek to grab the sound award, how I feel it was robbed for a Best Pic nod, and how its subtle-yet-stunning special effects are better utilized than Avatar's mind-blowing-but-everywhere CGI. Best Visual Effects? Avatar, I suppose. But Best Use of Visual Effects? Star Trek. The District 9 snub for make-up hurts more everyday. As for Sharlto Copley's snub. I saw it coming a mile away, but he SO deserved a spot on that list. He'd have been my winner, even after watching Jeff Bridges go all loose-belted in Crazy Heart.

I know Sandra Bullock is popular with the industry and she's not likely to be nominated again with her usual line of work, but I still would rather see any of her competitors win (I haven't seen The Last Station yet, so I'll count Helen Mirren out for the moment, but I'm sure she earned her place). But Meryl, Gabby, and Carey were all fantastic. My personal favourite is Meryl although I'd also definitely give Gabby my major props. She's been overshadowed by Mo'Nique this awards season to an extent, when it comes to winning that is, but her performance was really great. Overall, I've come to appreciate Precious more and more as time goes on. I think I left it off my top 16 list and I sort of regret that now. Well, if I did. I might not have and I might just be forgetful right now.

As I go on in my life as an avid movie lover, I never question why I love it, and I think that's how I know how much I care about everything. From watching the awards season to the bloggers to the Yahoo! posts about random shizz to the need to check off all the movies I see on icheckmovies.com to watching video art in my Video class to looking at directing from the theatre perspective, everything I do just reminds me how much I love it.

Well, maybe aside from Philosophy and Film. We watch good movies, we have interesting discussions, but boy oh boy does that class assign way too much reading. And weekly prompts like asked for don't come as easily as, say, my documentary class' prompts last year. Blargh. I like film. But philosophy... not quite as much. Not always. Sometimes. This is my trouble class this semester. I just can't get into it.

But anyway, the point of this post is the ramble as usual to help prove that I'm still alive and kicking, that I am not here for lack of caring about the movies, but for a distinct love that keeps me distracted from being here and instead relegated to making short tweets about movie stuff. I've got most of my Oscar predictions set, although I'm still debating about original screenplay and, of course, the shorts. I'll be sure to share once I feel fully set. 'slaters.

PS: I do not approve of many of the things they are planning to do with the Oscars. I sincerely hope I am proven wrong when I watch the telecast... but we'll see. *shiver*

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Immediate Post-Oscar Thoughts...

I guess the main surprise to me, and I know that other people saw this coming, was that The Blind Side snuck into the Best Picture race, eliminating Invictus in its wake. That's not really a move up or down to me, but rather sideways, as I liked both films, but wasn't particularly passionate about either of them. I'm a little disappointed that, even with the lackluster Best Picture love for Invictus, Matt Damon still stole a Supporting Actor nod. I love Matt Damon and he's a wicked talented actor and I suppose this is the Academy's way of making up for not nominating him for Best Actor for The Informant!, but I'd have liked to see The Hurt Locker love showered onto Anthony Mackie, perhaps, or maybe a deserved nod for Alfred Molina, who was snubbed. I haven't seen The Last Station, so I can't judge Helen Mirren or Christopher Plummer's nods, although, of course, I am a bit sad to see newer faces like Emily Blunt and Abbie Cornish forgotten. Although, of course, Helen Mirren probably deserves the nod.

I was especially placed by the inclusions of A Serious Man and District 9 both in the screenplay races and in the Best Picture line-up. People have been predicting District 9 as a likely one for both and A Serious Man as a likely possibility for screenplay, but I was psyched to see A Serious Man included in the Best Picture line-up. I was slightly baffled, but not entirely, to see Penelope Cruz nominated for Best Supporting Actress. I haven't seen Nine, but I suppose Penelope Cruz's talent and charm make up for the bad press and supposedly-eh movie.

I haven't seen In the Loop, but I will, and I am pleased to see it get a spot. I'm even more pleased to see Avatar shut out of the screenplay race. Not that Avatar had a bad script, as many would argue, but simply that there are far stronger scripts in the running this year.

I think I'm out of things to say for this moment, but I do have to run anyhow off to class. These nominees weren't full of too many surprises, but if the inclusion of The Blind Side for Best Picture says anything, it says that Sandra Bullock is definitely the frontrunner, which makes me sad, because, to be frank, Meryl Streep's performance was infinitely better. She's won before, sure, but jeezum, she still deserves it now.

I am sad that pretty much none of my longshots, at least of the announced categories, came through, but that was to be expected.