Ben Kingsley – Hugo
My Overall Thoughts:
This is a great year with 5 very worthy nominees but the two that stand out the most are the most experienced actors with the longest careers of the five.
5. Nick Nolte
4. Jonah Hill
3. Kenneth Branagh
2. Christopher Plummer
1. Max von Sydow
5. My Week with Marilyn – Fascinating idea that feels a bit too much like a paparazzi style look at the life of one of the most famous actresses of all time. Williams is amazing in the lead and really gives off the feel that she is the real Monroe and that is the main reason to watch this film. Branagh is great as Olivier and was also very deserving of his Best Supporting Actor Nomination for this role. The story unfortunately meanders along too much and even though it’s a brisk 90+ minutes, their are too many lulls in the story that take away from the enjoyment of it all.
4. Beginners – Very interesting concept that is even more powerful when one realizes that it is somewhat based on truth. Plummer and McGregor are both spectacular here and we truly feel a newfound connection between their characters when their lives are changed. The visuals shown here about the vast changes over the years as to how people perceive and see things was quite enjoyable to watch unfold. Plummer deservingly won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for this role.
3. Moneyball – Great baseball movie for those who love the sport and for those who don’t it’s an inspirational story of perseverance against all odds. Brad Pitt is great here.
2. Warrior – Great movie because it gives us two heroes to root for despite the fact that only one can ultimately win. Excellent cast helps to keep us in suspense as to who will be the better fighter. Really liked how they properly developed both characters in a way that you don’t want to have to choose between them eventhough you know you will inevitably need to. Great message about family that still shines through despite being seemingly about fighting.
1. Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close – Very moving story about love, loss and the quest for something more in life. The narration works excellently here and I liked the choice of Horn as the protagonist. Von Sydow is great as the mute “renter” and despite not saying a word, we understand his character so well. Haven’t read the book, but I really enjoyed the way this was presented on screen for us. I think that having Hanks and Bullock as the parents was pure Oscar bait and it might have been even better with lesser known actors in those roles.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Yes and No! Both Plummer and Von Sydow did amazing jobs with their roles and either would have been a very deserving winner in this category.
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!