Sunday, September 26, 2010

Maybe Next Year

For the 4th year in a row I have not gotten selected for Oscar Bleacher Seats. Maybe the 5th anniversary of my mission will be the winner.

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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

So Much Time on My Hands

Remember when Sandra Bullock smelled gas on Keanu Reeves after he came up from under the bus? Upon hearing his explanation, she chastises him by saying, "You felt you needed another challenge?"

I think she'd be saying something similar to me these days as I continually stretch the reaches of The Challenge.

I have turned my attention to the category of Adapted Screenplay, a bit by accident. Even with all the hype surrounding "The Social Network" I didn't realize it was based on the novel Accidental Billionaires until I spied the book on my boss' desk. I borrowed it and set about reading it before the October 1st wide-release of the film.

Following that exercise, I thought why not do it with all tracking contenders? So I have borrowed the following from the library: Never Let Me Go, Winter's Bone, Flipped, and Between a Rock and a Hard Place (which has been adapted into Danny Boyle's film- "127 Hours.")

Yes, I must have tons of time on my hands. Either that, or I am teaching myself yet again about the type of commitment (and obsession) it takes reach a goal and to do something that makes your heart soar.

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Sunday, September 19, 2010

2010 Challenges of the Challenge

I love the area in which I live for many things; access to films is not one of them.  

I was talking (translated: complaining) to fellow Film Society members today about the following quandary:  If I want to see many of the films that appear on Oscar-contender trackers, I've got hours-long drives ahead of me.  Therefore, finding ways to view as many films as possible becomes an excellent exercise in research and time management.  

I have to plot out wide-release dates, research what theatres will be showing the films, and make plans around kids' activities and spousal availability (did I mention being a working mother also presents challenges on top of challenges to my challenge?).  Add to the scheduling woes the fact that some films are no longer in theatres, and some of the documentaries may never make it this way, and then it becomes another research project into DVD release dates (did I mention sleep and I are archenemies?).  To that DVD challenge, a footnote that many of the Blockbusters in my area are closing.  

My last gripe on this proximal handicap of mine:  what on earth will I do if our local indie-favoring theatre decides not to show the animated and live action shorts this season?  I need to get on the phone to the person-in-charge there, because I'll never get close to my goal if those aren't presented again!

What's that quote about the thrill of the chase?

Friday, September 17, 2010

Preconceived Inceptions

I had said I would review "Inception" here, but it's been too long since I've seen it.  It seems besides the point now for me to write down what I thought about the film.  With all of the other critics out there, including those who are paid to tell you what they think, what does my opinion of Christopher Nolan's brilliant work matter?  All I will say  is that "Inception" deserves the Best Original Screenplay award as much as Pulp Fiction did in 1994.  It is unique, suspenseful and thought-provoking.  If you've heard it's too confusing to sit through, do yourself a favor and watch it anyway.  Sit down to view it and promise yourself that you'll make no judgments and that you won't over-think it.  Don't say to yourself "I cannot keep track of all of this."  For when it fades to black, you'll let out one big breath (because you've been holding it the whole time) and realize that you followed it much more closely than you ever could have imagined.  You'll find yourself believing DiCaprio's character when he explains“Dreams feel real while we’re in them.  It’s only when we wake up that we realize something was actually strange.”

Up next:  2010 Challenges of the Challenge

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Labor Day Weekend

I got my film-watching on this weekend, that is for sure! Some were for fun, some were for the challenge and one was for both!

On Friday night I kicked it off with "Date Night." I loved Steve Carrell so much, as I always do. I was also pleasantly surprised by how much I loved Mark Wahlberg in comedy. It bodes well for "The Other Guys" for me. After this I tried to move on to "Shutter Island" but kept falling asleep so I saved it for Saturday. (Tried to watch it during kids' naptime on Saturday and wound up taking a nap myself.)

On Sunday I went to see "Inception" with friends and I find myself wanting to review it in a separate post. It was amazing and I want the space to explore it. I also tried to watch "Shutter Island" again to no avail. I was asleep in under 20 minutes.

Monday morning was do or die time because my rentals were already overdue. So I triumphed over "Shutter Island" and found myself feeling like my Labor Day weekend had turned into a Leonardo-Dicaprio-delusional-dream Fest, between "SI" and "Inception." I have to say though, I loved them both.

We took the kids to see "Nanny McPhee Returns" in the afternoon, and though I loved the entire cast, I found myself missing the romance and magic of the Firth. Colin Firth that is. Nanny's departure was just so much lovelier and more magical in that original movie.

Lastly, I watched "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo." It was good, but graphically true to the book, with a few uncomfortable scenes. It was also in Swedish, so I felt like my journey to the Oscars had indeed begun. Not that this movie will be recognized, just that I don't feel like I've seen an Oscar contender until I've 'read' at least 3 films!

So I used a 3 day weekend to see 5 films. I feel so productive, and yet not so. "Shutter Island," "Nanny McPhee," and "Inception" are appearing on Oscar Contender Trackers, so certainly I did some great homework.

Full thoughts on Inception to follow.

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Saturday, September 4, 2010


So in the wings this weekend, I've got the two mind-benders starring Leonardo DiCaprio.  I've rented "Shutter Island" to watch late at night so that I can appropriately scare the pee out of myself, and then watch a Sesame Street show or something like it so that I can go to sleep.

Tomorrow, I'm planning on taking in "Inception" before it leaves the last theatre in town.  I'm excited that it may turn into a viewing party with friends followed by beers and lively conversation.

If you've seen these films, I'd love to hear your thoughts on them in the comments below!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Getting Official

I kicked off September by receiving my membership cards to our local Film Society in the mail. 

It may not seem like a major deal in the scheme of everything that goes on in this world, but for me in my mission to reclaim lost dreams...  it is the proverbial heartwarming moment.

Cue swelling music score...