Angelina Jolie – A Mighty Heart
My Overall Thoughts:
This is a year with 5 great nominees and any of them could be considered a deserving winner, but two of them battled it out during the award season and it could have been either come Oscar night.
5. Ellen Page
4. Laura Linney
3. Cate Blanchett
2. Marion Cotillard
1. Julie Christie
5. La vie en rose – This film is a complete mess and lacks any kind of real structure. The narrative jumps back and forth in time and fails to help the viewer care at all about the story because all we actually want to see is the amazing performance of Cotillard along with the famous song she is known for singing. Cotillard was definitely deserving of winning the Oscar for Best Actress for this role because she truly transforms herself for in this performance, but the film itself leaves the viewer wanting for something much more interesting and enjoyable.
4. The Savages – Fascinating look at life and how one deals with getting older and at the same time deal with how others around you also get older. Linney and Hoffman are both great here as the siblings and Bosco is sublime as their aging father. The story is set up really well that we get a clear picture of how the lives of all three of them are affected by one another but also have their own bumps along the way that helps complicate things even more. The dialogue is written really well and this helps with the character development since each of them are given very unique and quirky personalities which makes them all feel even more realistic. Linney was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress for her work here, but I think both of the men were even more deserving of accolades for their roles.
3. Juno – Very interesting perspective on parenthood, teenage pregnancy and looking for true love. Great script with very witty dialogue. Excellent cast that keeps the storyline down to Earth, quirky and fun giving us a very pleasant 100 minutes to spend with this group of people.
2. Elizabeth: The Golden Age – Great sequel that stays fascinating the entire time. The story is filled with lots of political intrigue that shows the kind of issues that she had during her reign. Blanchett is once again superb in the title role and was very deserving of her second Oscar nomination for playing this role. The supporting cast is equally as good and both Owen and Rush stand out among them all. The film does a great job depicting the rivalries that she had with both Spain and its Armada and with her cousin Mary, Queen of Scots. The movie does a great job explaining to us how both of those parts of the story progress at similar points in time which shows the greatness of her ability as a monarch and ruler.
1. Away from Her – Very emotional and realistic view of dealing with having to institutionalize a loved one. The performances are superb and you really believe that Christie and Pinsent were together for over forty years. Polley is an amazing director and knows how to choose complex and emotional projects for us to get completely absorbed into. I’m shocked that Christie lost the Oscar to Cotillard that year.
Do I agree with the Oscar winner? – Yes and no! MC gives a very transforming performance here, but JC is slightly better in AFH.
Let me know what you think about these films and my rankings!