Oscar Nominated Films

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Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby wpqx » Fri Jun 08, 2007 1:19 am

I saw the Miramax remake, so therefore was never too interested in the original. I plan on getting a few Rouch films, I'm not sure what Facets has as they are very hit or miss when it comes to import dvd's.

On the plus side I have now finished the 1950s best picture nominees, however I still have some work from the 40s and 60s which I'll be working on soon.
wpqx
 


Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby wpqx » Fri Jun 08, 2007 4:49 am

Wake Island (1942) - John Farrow

This is shameless propoganda, and I almost expected a line at the end to say "Buy war bonds in your theater", which weren't exactly uncommon during WWII. Wake Island is of the school of films like Across the Pacific that were thrown together the second the US entered the war. This one tells of an early defeat, but a rather Alamo like stand by the USMC. Your standard batch of familiar faces but unfamiliar names appear and almost all of them would go on to appear in countless other WWII movies. Certain scenes work, but there is nothing revalatory about the film, and it is very cliched. I do admire some of the truth that seeps out in these original war films, simply because with history's habit of white washing you can get a different story. The film was tremendously popular, and helped set up the blueprint for many more of the same.

*Wake Island was nominated for best picture, best director, best original screenplay, and best supporting actor (William Bendix)
wpqx
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby arsaib4 » Fri Jun 08, 2007 4:57 am

Good lord, mon ami. I'm not sure if the Binoche-Depp starrer was a remake or not but it was definitely NOT a remake of Denis' Chocolat. I mentioned it since it's set in Cameroon and is directed by a foreigner (sort of).

More on Rouch later.
arsaib4
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby wpqx » Fri Jun 08, 2007 4:59 am

I was told it was a remake, in that case then it might actually be worth seeing.
wpqx
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby arsaib4 » Sat Jun 09, 2007 2:07 am

Denis' film isn't the first to take place in the waning days of African colonialism, and for her the narrative arc could be considered traditional, but her understanding of race, culture, identity, politics, which shines through in the film's most affecting moments, is second to none. Do share your thoughts if you get the chance to watch Chocolat. It's available on a decent quality DVD from MGM.
arsaib4
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby arsaib4 » Sat Jun 09, 2007 4:26 pm

I've started a DVD thread on Rouch. Hope it helps. I'll add the info for the massive box set devoted to him at another time -- no subs, though. I regret not taping a couple of the films that were shown around the time this extraordinary cultural anthropologist died (due to a car accident in Niger on Feb 18th, 2004; he was 86). I have considered writing more about him but since I've only seen 8 or 9 of the nearly 130 films he made (many of whom, as you could imagine, still require post-production work), it would be rather pretentious of me to do so. Here's a wonderful website devoted to him and his work.

Note: New Yorker Video will soon release Paris vu par... (Six in Paris) on DVD. It's a collection of vignettes set in different sections of the city (I have a feeling that the new Paris, je t'aime has something to do with this release). In any case, Rouch, Godard, Chabrol, Douchet, Rohmer and Pollet are the directors.
arsaib4
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby wpqx » Sat Jun 09, 2007 6:30 pm

I've generally not been a fan of those anthology films.
wpqx
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby wpqx » Mon Jun 11, 2007 9:47 pm

Dr. Dolittle (1967) - Richard Fleischer

Ah poo, these things went on too long. Another bloated craptacular over the top musical that makes you so glad that Hollywood went bankrupt. Rex Harrison is playing a figure not too different from his professor in My Fair Lady, and the songs here are god awfully bad. Too much farce just makes you cringe as everything was just overdone here. Oh well this crap passed for entertainment. It was later remade to better financial success with Eddie Murphy, and having not seen that I can't offer my opinion on whether or not it was an improvement, but I can't imagine it being hard to top.

*Dr. Dolittle won for best song and best visual effects. It was nominated for best picture, best adapted score, best art direction, best cinematography, best editing, best sound, best original score, and best score. (how this had so many best score nominations is beyond me)
wpqx
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby wpqx » Tue Jun 12, 2007 5:39 pm

Mutiny on the Bounty (1962) - Lewis Milestone

Whenever a film gets remade you have to wonder why bother. Mutiny on the Bounty was an opportunity to use the rare Super 70mm film stock, and make a glorious technicolor extravaganza starring Marlon Brando fresh from his failure as a director. People look at the 60s as something of a dark period in Brando's career, and watching this film you can't change that opinion. Brando's Fletcher has none of the charisma of Gable's, and spends most of the movie just ambivalently walking around. You figure this is good for the first mate who watches Bligh wreak havoc on his crew too long, but even after the mutiny he's still weak as a character. Instead of grand adventure on the high seas, this is just a much longer version of a story we all know. Let's throw in a big storm sequence, and lets have Bligh be even more evil. The diplomatic sequences were cut or entirely done away with, making the little bit of substance gone. Much of the film is just fluff, and although technically well made fluff, it seems and insult to give this a best picture nomination at the exclusion of Days of Wine and Roses, The Manchurian Candidate, or The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.

*Mutiny on the Bounty was nominated for best color art direction, best color cinematography, best editing, best original score, best song, best special effects, and best picture.
wpqx
 

Re: Oscar Nominated Films

Postby wpqx » Thu Jun 14, 2007 7:50 pm

Wilson (1944) - Henry King

After more than a decade of fluctuating nominees, the Academy finally decided to standardize all the major categories at 5 films. In this regard it may seem really odd the five films selected by the Academy in 1944 for best picture. Darryl Zanuck believed in his Wilson project very adamantly. He envisioned it as a patriotic rival to Gone with the Wind, and spared no expense during its production. Unfortunately though the film was a horrific flop and was rarely seen. The film was technically astounding, and therefore received a slew of Oscar nominations, and won five technical awards. The picture is a product of its time, and you can see the Hollywood version of a president's life. Lots is white washed and we are left with the idea that Wilson was a tireless champion against privalege who was without blemish in his entire life. In addition his daughters and second wife are a little too beautiful to believe, but that was standard practice. Shot in glorious Technicolor the film almost feels faulted for being too well produced. The abundance of production values and flash make the film seem a little hollow. We can certainly go on about what films "should" have been nominated in 1944 (I'd say all but Double Indemnity were poor choices), but nominating big budgeted flops was something the Academy would continue to do for decades afterwards.

*Wilson was nominated for best actor (Alexander Knox), best director (Henry King), best picture, best score, and best special effects. It won best color art direction, best color cinematography, best editing, best sound, and best original screenplay.
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