Okay, just finished watching the tenth of the ten Best Picture nominees. Here's how I rank them.
- Inglourious Basterds - I had a couple problems with the film, mainly the blow 'em up ending and Eli Roth. Not Tarantino's best (although the farmhouse and bar scenes are among the best scenes he has ever done), but it was much, much better than anything else on this list.
- Precious - This was the most surprising movie of the bunch. I didn't want to watch this, I just knew it was going to be some sort of Oprah-fied dreck. But that's not the case. It's extremely depressing, and extremely good.
- The Hurt Locker - Very, very good movie, but not as good as the hype. It doesn't hit you over the head with an obvious plot. It just moves from one gut-wrenching situation to the next. The main point of the movie only becomes clear once it's over. I like that.
- District 9 - This is what Avatar wished it could be. A science fiction film that doesn't completely pander. But like Avatar, it suffers from the "Evil Colonel" problem. Also, a major problem in the plot: If the humans don't want the aliens on Earth, the aliens don't want to be on Earth, and the aliens have a way to get back to their home planet, what's all the fighting for?
- A Serious Man - It seems like this was intended for a very specific audience. I'm not Jewish, so I didn't get a lot of the references, or for that matter, the main point of the movies. But it is a Coen Brothers movie, which means it was visually and conceptionally interesting.
- Up In The Air - Eh. Not terrible. A little heavy-handed. Not Best Picture nominee material. None of the rest of the movies on the list are. Should have kept it at five.
- Up - Good animated flick. The first ten minutes may have made me cry, I'm not saying. But, after that it tails off into a very good kids movie. Great for kids, good for adults, not the stuff Best Pictures are made of.
- An Education - Snoozefest. The big dramatic climax is that, get this, the main actresses lover is... married! Wow. Shocking and not at all a concept already beaten into the ground (I'm looking at you, Up In The Air). But using Floyd Cramer's "The Rebound" in the opening credits was genius. That's a great song.
- Avatar - Best looking film by far. Simply beautiful. But they should have just given a two hour tour of Pandora, because the story the attached to this is laughably bad. Pocahantas meets Ferngully. If I was 12, this would for sure be the greatest movie ever made. I'm not 12. All the style in the world can't redeem the substance.
- The Blind Side - Lifetime movie of the week. Sandra Bullock is a horrible actress, but compared to the rest of this cast, she looks like Meryl Streep. Wanted to strangle the little kid. Tim McGraw? Really? Worst soundtrack ever. Who did the score for this, Harvey Sid Fisher? Wesley Willis? One of the worst movies of the year. How did it get on this list? Well, alright then.
- They picked the wrong year to expand the Best Picture field. Or, more accurately, they picked the wrong movies.
- In The Loop, Anvil: The Story of Anvil, and Moon were all better than the bottom seven.
- "Bust a Move" is featured in two of the Best Picture nominees? What the what?