Written PostGetting Ready For the Oscars!

Getting Ready For the Oscars!

I love watching the Oscars.

Oh, don’t get me wrong — it’s a pretty ridiculous popularity contest, and I usually find that Hollywood’s choices (in terms of the nominations and the winners chosen) range from the bizarre to the absurd.  BUT I do enjoy the spectacle of the show — particularly when there’s a good host bringing a lot of comedy into the proceedings — and the night is a great excuse to gather with some friends and talk about movies for three-plus hours.

If I disagree with Hollywood’s selections, then what movies do I think should have been nominated?  So glad you asked!  If you missed it, click to read part 1 and part 2 of my Top Ten Movies of 2008 list.  It’s quite a different bunch than the films that you’ll hear mentioned at this weekend’s ceremony!

As for Hollywood’s choices, I have ranked the Best Picture nominees below, in order of my preference:

1.  The Curious Case of Benjamin Button — This is the film I’m pulling for.  I loved it, and I hope to have a chance to see it again before it leaves theatres.  I’ve been having some fun with this flick in my comics all week, and you can click here to read my full review of the film.

2.  Frost/Nixon — A fascinating slice of history, brought to life by a group of powerhouse actors.  Click here to read my full review.

3.  Milk — An important film that is powerful and terrifically entertaining at the same time.  It almost made my top 10.  Click here to read my full review.

4.  Slumdog Millionaire — You know that Seinfeld episode where Elaine feels like she’s the only person in the world who didn’t like The English Patient?  That’s me with this movie.  I didn’t HATE it — it’s a perfectly fine, entertaining movie.  I just didn’t think it was anything that special, and CERTAINLY nowhere even close to the best film I saw in 2008.  Click here to read my full review.

5.  The Reader — Despite some terrific acting performances, I found this film to be just a mess.  Click here to read my full review.  If the film is making the point that I think it is making — that is, that Michael Berg (David Kross/Ralph Fiennes) is just as much a victim of the Nazis as were the Jews — then I find that to be a rather objectionable idea.  A movie that addresses the conflicted feelings of modern Germans about the Holocaust is a fascinating idea for a film, and I feel that I can be very sympathetic for Germans who suffered during the Holocaust, or through its aftermath.  But EQUATING that suffering to the suffering of Jews who were killed goes a bit too far for me.  And I really can’t blame Hanna Schmitz (Kate Winslet) for how Michael grows up to be such a prick.  Oh, and Hanna Schmitz’s deep, dark secret is really really stupid.  Click here to see my recent cartoons on the subject.

So those are my thoughts.  What are yours?

Enjoy the show, everyone!  See you back here next week!

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