Monday, December 8, 2008

Not to be Missed...Part One

Okay, so I'm in full swing on watching films in anticipation of having to vote for the SAG awards.
Here's a quick run-down of some of the best I've seen so far. Pass the salt and dig in.

Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
So far, this film rises far above the pack in Cinematography. A beautiful, heart wrenching, cinematic masterpiece. The story and direction are outstanding. Really, there are some films one sees that define the medium, and this is one of them. It's why we see films...and love them.

I've Loved You So Long (Il ya longtemps que je t'aime)
I'll admit that I'm biased when it comes to Kristin Scott Thomas---she is a remarkable beauty and talent. Compelling to watch. And here, in this moody, unraveling story, she is superb. For personal family reasons, this film probably affected me more than most. And the success in this French drama lies in the hands of Ms. Thomas. I loved it, tears and all.

WALL-E (2008)
A sweet, thought-provoking and engrossing tale about an animated robot? Yep. Score another big win for the talent pool at Pixar. I expect to be swept up in emotion by films with animated animals, but I didn't expect this reaction from WALL-E. An adorable, brave little...robot...and a future of obese, couch potato humans who've lost the ability to move? Sign me up. A smart tale, sweet story, and great film.

Frozen River (2008)
While Slumdog Millionaire gets my vote as a cinematic masterpiece, Frozen River shines as a gritty masterpiece. Melissa Leo 's performance is stellar. I can still feel the cold, hear the crunching of packed snow and ice, and anguish over "Ray Eddy's" life in a trailer in upstate New York. Bravo.

Doubt (2008)
Philip Seymour Hoffman and Meryl Streep in the same film? Truly, I must have died and gone to heaven. If you love film as much as I do, you must see Doubt. This is what all filmmakers aspire to. On every level, in every category, one of the best films ever made, in my ever so humble opinion. Streep and Hoffman are beyond brilliant. I couldn't believe that the film was over when it felt like only ten minutes had gone by.

Too much gushing for you? Tired of hearing "one of the best films ever?" Well, stay tuned...more to come. Including a palette-clearing summary of some not-so-wonderful movies.

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