Wednesday, February 3, 2016

More short facebook reviews for Oscar nominated films 2016

Mike and I rented "The Martian," from Comcast's Xfinity On Demand, and found it to very enjoyable, funny as much as it is exciting. This movie was probably made after the popularity of "Gravity," but it's different from that. "The Martian" is science fiction with a human heart, and doesn't need as many edge of your seat action sequences.

Based on the best-selling novel by Andy Weir, "The Martian" imagines a world of the near future, where NASA is smart enough to send astronauts on missions to Mars, and send messages back and forth as quick as text messages. Matt Damon is great in this film, and deserves his Oscar nomination, because he gets into the heart and mind of his character by keeping a video journal. We as an audience feel Mark Watney's fear, and feel his joy and triumph. We really enjoyed this film, and I loved the multi-cultural cast, bringing science into the Twenty-first Century.

Mark Watney (Matt Damon) is determined to survive, even though he has a fear that he may not, and NASA is determined to rescue him, and that's enough to keep us interested in this story until the very end.

I'm glad that another science fiction film with brainy lines has been nominated for the Best Picture Oscar. Will it win? Probably not. I'm still trying to figure out how Mad Max got nominated for 10 Academy Awards( Has the Academy finally lost its marbles?)

It was nice to see Michael Pena, a Mexican actor from Chicago, play an astronaut in "The Martian." Nerds never looked cooler than in this film. I'm also glad it was nominated for seven Academy Awards. Hopefully, it will win a few, because I really liked this film. I will never think of the disco song "I Will Survive" in the same way again. lol.

Peace, Love, and Best Wishes, Ruben and Mike.

Mike and I went to see the movie "Room" after it was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress (Brie Larson), and Best Screenplay. After reading a review on it, I went into this movie thinking it will be very frightening, disturbing, and claustrophobic, because it is about a young woman and her son being held captive in a shed for many years.

However, it's not as dark as it sounds. Joy, the mother, creates a warm and happy place for her son Jack to help him cope with the nightmare that they are living in. The original novel and screenplay by Emma Donoghue, are told mostly through the eyes by a resilient little boy played heroically by Jacob Tremblay. In the end, Room inspires hope, and lifts the heart, because it shows that love does conquer all, and love helps you survive the worst circumstances.

This movie made me think of Amanda Berry, who was held captive for eleven years in a room in Ohio, by a psychotic Puerto Rican, until she was rescued by a neighbor in 2013. I cried for Amanda Berry, and was so glad that she escaped with the children she bore in captivity. "Room" suggests what Amanda Berry might have gone through to cope with the real world, and keep her sanity.

Mike and I cried a couple times while watching "Room" because Larson and Tremblay are such great actors that it doesn't seem like they are acting, but really living this story. I think Brie Larson will win the Oscar for Best Actress this year, because she is that good. Jacob Tremblay deserves recognition for his brave performance, too. I'm so glad the we got to see this move. It is an "illuminating," and "inspiring" film!

Peace, Love, and Best Wishes, Ruben and Mike.

Mike and I have seen three of the movies nominated for Best Animated Film at the Oscars this year, and love them. "Inside Out," is an emotionally deep and moving movie about a young girl with growing pains. "Inside Out" is one of the rare occasions that an animated film got nominated for Best Original Screenplay.

"When Marnie Was There" is also a coming of age tale, set in Japan, about a girl feeling troubled by her foster parents, and finds a ghostly friend in an abandoned mansion. "Marnie" is such a sweet and touching story about friendship with a moving, surprise ending. It's based on a book by a British author, who wrote it in the late sixties.

Both these films teach us that we shouldn't shelter kids from the sadness and tragedy of life, because they could suffer for it.

The third film, "Shaun The Sheep," from England, was delightful, funny, and very sweet. It's from the creators of the clay animation makers of "Wallace and Gromit."

All three of these films are on video now, and worth a watch. I still think that "Inside Out" will win the Oscar, but you can never tell.

Peace, Love, and Best Wishes, Ruben and Mike.

Mike and I saw "Ex Machina" today on video, and think it is a very fascinating science fiction tale of robots becoming too human. The screenplay, nominated for an Oscar this year, is very Hitchcockian like the movie "Vertigo" where an obsessed man tries to create the perfect woman. It's a quiet thriller that's intelligently written, like a modern day Frankenstein with a female empowerment twist. British writer, Alex Garland, wrote a tale that shows that robots of the future are capable of love, hate, and revenge like humans. Alicia Vikander's performance is hypnotic and dazzling. The special effects were also nominated for an Oscar. We love it. Peace, Love, and Best Wishes, Ruben and Mike.

Mike and I saw "Spotlight" at the theaters this weekend, and think it's a great film, with a great story, and great performances. "Spotlight" succeeds in telling the difficult truths, by exposing sex abuse scandals in the Catholic Church.

These reporters investigating the case are complicated, because some of them were raised at Catholics, and they know that half of the readers of The Boston Globe are Catholic, and, yet, they go against their beliefs, in order to reveal the shocking truth that the Catholic Church has covered up a shocking number of sex abuse cases committed by priests.

These reporters are not portrayed as heroes in this film, they are just trying to do their jobs well, and painstakingly do a lot a difficult research, including interviewing victims, and telling their harrowing stories. I really think this movie should win Best Picture at the Oscars, because it is an an important film, with important issues, told well, and acted superbly.

Mike and I didn't feel like weeping for the victims, until Mark Ruffalo's character has a breakdown, and gets emotional, when he shouldn't be. This movie made me excited about journalism again, when print journalism is being quickly replaced by internet journalism. The Boston Globe won a 2003 Pulitzer Prize for the reporting on pedophilia in the Catholic Church.

"All The President's Men," made me take journalism in college and write for the college paper. "Spotlight," has a great script, and I think that maybe more actors beside Mark Ruffalo should have been nominated!

It won Best Cast in a film at the Screen Actor's Guild awards, so that might be a clue that Academy members will vote for this film for Best Picture. This is one great film that's not completely biased against the Catholic Church, but shows that denying and covering up abuse is a terrible thing for its victims, and all those involved. Peace, Love, and Best Wishes, Ruben and Mike.

Although I agree that should be more diverse nominations, I still plan to watch the Oscars, because they, at least, have a history of acknowledging great performances by ethnically diverse actors. It just happens that two years in a row, all the actors nominated have been white. The Academy is 90 percent white, and 74 percent men, so it does look a little racist. Yet, many people in the Academy represent very liberal and diverse groups of people that includes the GLBT community. I think "Carol," and "The Danish Girl," are great enough to be nominated for Best Picture, but they didn't make the list. I still appreciate that "Carol" still recieved six nominations anyway, considering it's a Lesbian love story. Mike and I plan to watch some of the movies nominated, because it is a tradition with us, even if we don't completely appreciate the films. We try to see what deserves the Oscar, the most. Is the world really filled with racist, sexist, homophobes? What do you think?


No comments:

Post a Comment