So, it’s one of my favorite weekends of the year â€”Â Oscar Weekend. And that means that we also finished up the Best Picture Showcase at AMC today.
First things first, a disclaimer: I am recently employed by AMC and have to state that these opinions are my own.
Last weekend, we had Avatar, Up in the Air, Precious, The Blind Side and Inglorious Basterds. (If you want to read about weekend 1 of the Best Picture Showcase, you can revisit my previous post.)
So to complete the 10 Best Picture Nominees today, the lineup was:
As we did last weekend, we arrived late since we’d seen (and own) Disney Pixar’s brilliant UP.
So technically our day was supposed to start with A Serious Man, but we actually kicked it off with the movie I was most looking forward to today: An Education.
I really loved An Education. Carey Mulligan is just unbelievably charming and complex in a terrific coming-of-age story penned by one of my favourite (with added ‘u’ because he’s British) authors, Nick Hornby. Filled with great performances from Peter Saarsgard, Alfred Molina, Emma Thompson and that dude who is supposed to marry Amanda Seyfried in Mamma Mia!, all are eclipsed by Mulligan, who just brings so much wonderful charm to Jenny, the main character. The story is one we’ve heard before, but I just really connected with this story and thought to myself, “It’s too bad that nobody has a clue about this flick.”
Next flick up was The Hurt Locker, many critics’ pick to win the coveted Best Picture Oscar. I guess I just didn’t see the same movie because to me, it did NOT live up to the hype. It was a decent enough movie, but it really reminded me a lot of Jarhead (hat tip to Alli, who helped me remember the name of that movie). It’s a decent movie, but I really didn’t like it as much as I wanted to for whatever reason. Anthony Mackie was really the saving grace here.
A Serious Man was one of the worst movies I’ve seen in a long time. I have never really liked the Coen brothers, but have tolerated them. This flick was just incomprehensible. And I wasn’t alone in this assessment. Nearly everyone in our theatre felt the same way, wondering how it’s possible that this horrible, make-you-want-to-blow-your-brains-out-depressing movie could have a chance as the Best Picture of the year. Absolutely hated it.
My feelings on A Serious Man may have helped me to hate District 9 considerably less. I got a text from my brother telling me that he guaranteed I would hate it. Well, Jake, you were wrong. I didn’t hate it. It was unbelievably ambitious, but we’ve come to expect that from Peter Jackson. The beginning of the flick was a bit disjointed, but once it, *ahem*, takes its “turn”, it becomes a lot more entertaining. For those of you that have seen District 9, I have a question for you: did you think that the story had some parallels with Avatar? Alli brought that up after the movie and I had to chuckle because it’s not terribly far off.
So, after 2 weekends, Alli and I tackled 8 out of the 10 Best Picture nominees, having seen the other two multiple times. The Best Picture Showcase experience is such a blast (and I’m not just saying that because I work for AMC) if you love the movies. I happen to love the movies.
So my final rankings of all 10 films (my opinion, based upon how much I actually liked the films…I realize that I have no ability to judge these films based on anything else but my own personal opinion):
- An Education
- Up in the Air
- The Hurt Locker
- Inglorious Basterds
- District 9
- The Blind Side
- Precious Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire
- A Serious Man
I realize that putting The Blind Side as high as I did leaves me open for ridicule. But I really didn’t like Precious or A Serious Man. AT ALL. As far as what is going to win? I think it is a two-horse race between Avatar and The Hurt Locker. I’m giving the edge to Avatar right now. But The Hurt Locker has a ton of momentum. We’ll have to see…
So what were your thoughts? What do you think will take the Oscar for Best Picture Sunday night?