Number of Times Seen – 2 (19 Feb 2002 in Theater and 28 Aug 2013)
Brief Synopsis –A brilliant mathematician begins to work for the government in the 1950’s and must try to overcome his anti-social behavior in order to figure out what is real and what is only in his imagination.
My Take on it – This movie was made with the intention of winning the hearts and minds of Academy voters.
-It tackles some kind of disorder or physical ailment that the antagonist must overcome
– It is based on a real life person
– It stars A-list actors who have either already won awards or been nominated numerous times previously.
The truth is that this movie was a consolation award for Ron Howard after he wasn’t nominated for Best Director in 1995 for Apollo 13 (1995) and for the movie also not winning after being upset by Braveheart (1995). This isn’t Howard’s best work, but it was good enough to warrant to consolation prize.
The stars of this movie are Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly who make us truly believe in the life that they have built together. Ed Harris, Christopher Plummer and Paul Bettany all give strong supporting performances here.
2001 was a weak year and of the 4 Oscar Best Pic nominees in 2001 that were complete movies (In the Bedroom (2001), Moulin Rouge! (2001), Gosford Park (2001) and this one) this truly was the best of the bunch. The 5th nominee was Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) was better than all of the 4 others, but left viewers with an incomplete feeling since the journey of those 4 hobbits would go on for another two years and with many many more Oscar wins. Fellowship had 13 nominations and won 4. This movie only had 8 and because of the incompleteness of the LOTR saga it walked away with Best Picture, Director, Supporting Actress (Connelly) and Writing. It lost Film Editing, Makeup, Musical Score and Best Actor for Crowe. (4 of 8 Oscars)
This movie is very far from perfect and part of that is due to the fact that many times when a movie is based on the life of someone still living, many controversies arise due to the authenticity of the story and it truthfulness.
When I watch a movie based on a true story, I know that in order to make the story more compelling the writer will add or subtract information that wont let the story flow so well and I’m ok with that.
Bottom Line – Good movie. Not the Best movie of the year, but close. Contains many elements that Oscar voters love. Recommended!
Rating – Globe Worthy