Spike Jonze (Being John Malkovich)
Frank Darabont – The Green Mile
My Overall Thoughts:
This was a great year because all 5 of the nominees did amazing jobs with their films and any of them conceivably would have been worthy of taking home an Oscar for the work they did directing.
4. Michael Mann
3. Spike Jonze
2. Sam Mendes
1. M. Night Shyamalan
5. Being John Malkovich – Liked the way that the story tries to make puppeteering more tangible to the audience, but overall, I found the storyline to be quite boring and annoying. I have liked Malkovich when he plays a very eccentric and devious character moreso than when he plays in a straight drama and his performance just didn’t work for me here. Characters are quite unlikable. Funny that Charlie Sheen has a cameo here. Overall a good attempt at something bigger that just didn’t speak to me well enough.
4. The Cider House Rules – Great heartwarming movie seen from the eyes of an innocent young man. Amazing cast led by Maguire and Caine that manages to bring a very controversial subject to the screen in a perfect way.
3. The Insider – Excellent portrayal of a man trying to show his convictions, but still fearing for the safety of his family, career and ultimately his life. Really follows the message about journalistic responsibility and trust to the public. Pacino is great here, but Crowe is even better; perhaps even his best role ever. Very gripping and unfortunately still very relevant even 20 years after the real story happened.
2. The Sixth Sense – Excellent movie. Beautifully scripted by Shyalaman which put him on the map. Definitely his best movie. Osment and Willis are both really great here.
1. American Beauty –Amazing movie about getting the most out of life and not getting bogged down by it. Great performances all around especially by Cooper and Spacey.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Yes and No! I can agree that Mendes did an amazing job with AB and was quite deserving of winning on his first theatrical film work but I still think that M. Night’s work with TSS was excellent especially given the fact that he was considered a novice director when he made this and it really introduced him to the world as a visionary with so much potential (that has mostly been wasted ever since).
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!