Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Best Picture Blitz 2014

The list of Things I've Never Done is long. It includes things like cocaine, Zumba, and eating any part of a frog oh my gosh, I had to cross that one out, as I actually did try frog legs recently at a Chinese buffet, which was an even worse idea than it sounds like. So instead let's go with eating the testicles of any animal.

And I'll try to forget about all the
poor legless froggies.
Also on the list of Things I've Never Done is that I've never seen all of the films nominated for the Best Picture Oscar in a given year. I've never even made a solid attempt at it. Typically if I've seen one or two by the time the awards are given out, I chalk that up as a good moviegoing year in my book.

By the way, writing a book in chalk is probably
a terrible idea. Especially if you're a lefty.
But this year I have a willing partner in media overload in the form of Precocious Daughter. I'm proud to say she devours movies and music as much as I did at her age, except that her taste and the breadth of her choices are better at age 14 than mine ever will be. It's as if the apple didn't fall far from the tree, but then it wisely rolled a safe distance away before the tree could infect it with some kind of gnarly root disease.

There was the seed of a good metaphor
in there, but it got wormy.

Anyway, PDaughter have agreed we're going to try to see all nine of this year's Best Picture nominees before the Academy Awards ceremony on March 2.

OK, we're going to try to see eight of the nine. I have no desire for either one of us to be subjected to 556 uses of the f-word in three hours, so we've decided to skip The Wolf of Wall Street. My Drunkards know that I have no particular aversion to the word. But clearly this film needed a good cursing editor. Everyone knows a few well-chosen fucks are better than just fucking all over the place.

You may quote me on that. Chuck knows best.

And it's going to take some lobbying by PDaughter to get me into 12 Years a Slave. I know it's supposed to be a remarkable and important film. But it also is intense and overwhelming and emotionally difficult to watch. I'm not sure I can handle it. But I'll try.

We began our quest yesterday with American Hustle. Which should have been nominated for more things so it could win them. Loved, loved, loved this movie. Christian Bale and his amazing combover were spectacular. Jennifer Lawrence blew me away. The script was perfection. And yes, the f-word and a few others were used liberally, but, you know, not 556 times. Probably not more than a hundred, hundred and fifty tops.

It's practically Romantic poetry.
So wish us luck as we endeavor to get to 8/9 of the Best Picture-nominated films. I think our next stop is Nebraska.


  1. 1. Writing in general is a challenge when you're left-handed. I always drag my hand through whatever I've just written.

    2. I have only see Nebraska of the nine and I loved it. It's bleak, it's stark... but it's got a lot of heart. And it probably won't win.

    3. Some larger cities offer a binge viewing experience right before the Oscars - where you can get all nine in over a 36-hour period. This feels like punishment to me, but what do I know.

    4. I'm curious to what your taste in movies is.

    5. Zumba is awesome. Frogs taste like rubbery chicken.

  2. I don't watch Hollywood any longer. Full stop. The last of Hollywood I watched was Avatar.

    So my viewing will necessarily be restricted - if I bother at all - to the "Foreign Film" nominees. Basically, Russian, Iranian and French cinema is what I give a damn about. British? British, sometimes.

    Hollywood? Never, ever. Ever.


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