The Oscar campaigns are starting up, the festival circuit is declaring winners left and right, and here at Filmcurious, the September Film Awards are upon us.
The “In a Cinema Near You” Award
Much has already been said and written about Sicario, since its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival. One of the things the film has been pushing during promotion is the Emily Blunt factor. Her character was originally a man, and the studio didn’t want the part to go to a woman. I love Emily Blunt. Love. But her character isn’t the tough female FBI agent that they have been hyping her up to be. Kate Macer is pretty much a deer in the headlights, while Benicio Del Toro and Josh Brolin‘s characters do all the dirty work. I also wonder what the script looked like with a male protagonist. Something tells me that a certain scene in which Blunt‘s character is in danger wouldn’t be the direct result of sexual attraction. That being said, Sicario is one of the best thrillers I’ve seen, and Roger Deakins gives us mere mortals another film that simply looks amazing. The ending is weirdly perfect. You don’t really know which side you’re on anymore, and that’s the whole point.
I gave some of my friends a whole bunch of movie dates and asked them which movie they’d like to accompany me on. They chose The Intern. I wasn’t surprised, and I honestly didn’t mind seeing a Nancy Meyers movie. When we were getting our tickets one of my friends asked what this movie was about, to which another friend replied: “the guy from Meet the Fockers and the girl from The Devil Wears Prada working together.” I bit my tongue. I really did, but I just couldn’t help it. The eye-roll escaped me, and once that was out there, I figured I might as well start the shaming. MEET THE FOCKERS???? Ugh.
Anyway, Rene Russo is amazing and any scene with Robert De Niro and the hipster guys working at AboutTheFit was pretty funny. Overall, pretty bland but nevertheless amusing.
Also in theaters right about now: Everest. It’s not as good as it could be, but it’s definitely worth a trip to the cinema. Jake Gyllenhaal steals any scene he’s in.
And I’m not just saying that because I’m in love with him. The film is able to build up the tension, and it made me root for a “Texas guy through and through,” which really surprised me. The real Jon Krakauer apparently isn’t really pleased with his on screen depiction, and I’ll probably read his version of the events in Into Thin Air, sometime in the near future. (This is also a helpful reminder to myself that even though I’ve read his Into the Wild, I still haven’t seen Sean Penn‘s movie adaptation. Look for that in the October film awards.)
Set for a general US release this Friday is Sebastian Schipper‘s Victoria. A remarkable film, but more on that later.
The “Californication” Award
Winner: Inside Out
My local theater has only been showing the dubbed version of Inside Out, which means that I’ve been holding off on going to see it. A couple of weeks ago, I sort of ended up watching it anyway by accident, and even though I liked it, and there were definitely tears streaming down my face at one point (Bing Bong), I couldn’t help feeling a bit disappointed. It’s their first original film since Brave, and I’m one of those people that loved Brave, so I don’t see Inside Out as a ‘return to form’, but as another Pixar movie. I’m pretty sure that the Flemish voice cast might have something to do with it as well. If anyone makes something better, it’s Amy Poehler, right?
Now it probably looks as though I didn’t like Inside Out. That’s not true. I might think of it as just another Pixar film, but Pixar delivers great original films pretty much every time. The script is really strong, and the animation looked good. It has a great message for kids, and I’ll eat my hat if it isn’t nominated for best picture.
Inside Out isn’t the only film that took place in California (or inside the head of a girl in California.) San Andreas also visits San Francisco. And we get to watch it fall totally apart. Ah, the appeal of the disaster movie. ‘Cause that’s what it is, another generic disaster movie, that happens to have The Rock in it. And despite realizing that it’s just empty entertainment, with no real value, I loved it. And then it ended with that American Flag waving in the wind, and I just erupted into laughter.
I also saw two comedies, both starring Orange is the New Black regulars, and both set in Californian cities where not much seems to happen. One of them failed, and one of them didn’t. Addicted to Fresno would be the failure. When the film started I though this was going to be a sad version of Maid in Manhattan, but I was really wrong about that. Although, just like Maid in Manhattan, its not very good. I’m sure Natasha Lyonne and Judy Greer both could have used their time better, and Aubrey Plaza and Fred Armisen‘s characters are pretty forgettable.
The Overnight on the other hand, I did like. The main cast consists of four actors (Adam Scott,Taylor Schilling, Jason Schwartzman and Judith Godrèche) who play very well with each others, and in this particular case that’s pretty crucial. It’s awkward and weird, and often feels like a stage play, but it works.