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76th Academy Award Nominees!
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the night watchman
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Joined: 27 Jun 2003
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PostPosted: 01.30.2004 5:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

beltmann wrote:
I'm unwilling to lower the bar simply because a director chooses to work within a specific genre.


Nothing wrong with that.

beltmann wrote:


I'm rather baffled by this... most of my writings about the trilogy have praised how the CGI is perhaps better integrated than in any other film so far. I do find the films emotionally distant, but not as a result of the effects. In fact, I've often said that the real appeal of the trilogy, for me, is visual, rooted in its Pre-Raphaelite colors and expansive landscapes.


Well, maybe I misinterpreted. I seemed to get the impression that you felt the SFX and action overwhelmed the characters. In fact I recall you once saying you felt "abused," or something to that effect, upon leaving The Two Towers. I'll admit LOTR doesn't offer a lot in terms of subtly, although it does offer more than most "action" movies, and I personally appreciated its courage to have heart whereas many movies simply offer style, but I can't say I failed respond to the emotional moments when the movie expected me to, as broadly as they may have been rendered.

beltmann wrote:
I mean, The Lizzie Maguire Movie places deep importance on friendship, too, but that doesn't mean there's anything new, valuable, or interesting going on.


LOL. Touch?.

beltmann wrote:
I don't mean to say LOTR fails in this regard; I just mean that I don't find it particularly special in terms of that theme.


Well, again, I guess this is where we disagree. For the type of movie it is, I think LOTR far above average. That's not to say that I was moved by it as much as, say, Ghost World, to cite a movie we both deeply appreciate, or Dead Ringers, a movie that can leave me melancholy for days afterward. But for high fantasy, certainly, LOTR locks me in while I'm watching it.
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beltmann
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PostPosted: 01.30.2004 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the night watchman wrote:
For the type of movie it is, I think LOTR far above average.


Despite my reservations, and despite my skepticisms regarding the gushing praise the trilogy has received, I completely agree that all three entries are far above average. (I'd give Return a B+, and I liked Towers even more.) It's just that I liked many, many other 2003 releases far more.

Eric
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beltmann
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 5:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, the Oscars are over. I went 22/24, missing Best Animated Short and Adapted Screenplay (gambled and lost there). Without the games, the ceremony might be interminable. Anyway, no real surprises, and I'm happy for Penn, Theron, and Errol Morris.

Eric
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Michael Scrutchin
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I don't have much to say about the Oscars. I enjoyed the show (well, about half the time at least), but no big surprises or memorable moments this year. I still need to catch The Fog of War while it's playing in town.
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Rob Vaux
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 6:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michael B. Scrutchin wrote:
Yeah, I don't have much to say about the Oscars. I enjoyed the show (well, about half the time at least), but no big surprises or memorable moments this year. I still need to catch The Fog of War while it's playing in town.


What about Jack Black's and Will Farrell's "You're Boring" song? That was memorable enough for the whole show!

My living roomn was full of drunk ecstatic nerds, so no complaints on my end.

Was that Bob Weinstein's thigh that Renee Zellweger was fondling? *Shudder*

Rob
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Michael Scrutchin
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 7:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rob Vaux wrote:
What about Jack Black's and Will Farrell's "You're Boring" song? That was memorable enough for the whole show!


Oh, yeah, that was memorable -- I forgot about that. Laughing
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matt header
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 3:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was especially impressed by Penn's acceptance speech. I've always liked him, but he has a reputation for being somewhat prickly and ungrateful. His speech was noble, very grateful, very kind, and extremely warm - it was the best part of the evening, I think.
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Michael Scrutchin
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

matt header wrote:
I was especially impressed by Penn's acceptance speech. I've always liked him, but he has a reputation for being somewhat prickly and ungrateful. His speech was noble, very grateful, very kind, and extremely warm - it was the best part of the evening, I think.


Agreed. Based on his reputation, I didn't quite expect that. It was great.
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Jim Harper
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Joined: 29 Feb 2004
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Given that the show started at 12.50 a.m. on this side of the Atlantic, I fell asleep after the first two-and-a-half-hours. But it was interesting, if not exactly suprising.

Just a few replies to some points people have been raising. I do think the LOTR trilogy should be honoured for being an immense cinematic achievement, but I still wouldn't could any part of it among my favorite films, and that's unlikely to change. I've found them all entertaining and admirable, but with less than a quarter of the raw talent to be found in, say, Battle Royale or May.

As for the emotional distance of the films, that is for me down to the books. They're emotional distant because Tolkein had a very limited ability as far as human emotion is concerned, which is why all instances of emotion within his work are culled from the mythologies that were his main source. You won't find any instance of emotion in LOTR that doesn't have its source in Beowulf or the Eddas and sagas.
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beltmann
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 4:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

His reputation, I think, stems from behavior from long ago, and also the media's current tendency to remind us of that reputation. But the Penn who used to thrash reporters simply doesn't exist any more. I'd say that, for the last decade or so, he's been very adult, thoughtful, and mature, especially in interviews, and I don't think his demand for intelligence in art (or politics) ought to be confused with irritability. Frankly, we need more artists with high expectations, self-reflection, and a conscious. (Aside: I still think his work in Dead Man Walking is his greatest performance, and the one he should have won for.)

Related: The people I was watching with were dreading Tim Robbins' speech, expecting a political statement. I guess I was too, but I have no problem with artists using their time at the podium to raise politics. Movies matter because they can reflect, change, and interpret our world and of course that includes politics--what better place to celebrate how movies matter than at the ceremony celebrating the art form? Some stars exploit their celebrity to hawk Pepsi, some use it defend their convictions. I guess I admire the latter more than the former.

Eric
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Danny Baldwin
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PostPosted: 03.01.2004 11:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While, as you may've expected, I hated Penn's speech, he wasn't a bad choice, though I would've preferred Kingsley or Murray over him.

As for the best moment, I must say it had to be the intro video with Michael Moore screaming at the battle in The Return of the King, "This is a fictitious war, Hobbits!" It actually made me like him for just a second. Really.
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mfritschel
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PostPosted: 03.02.2004 2:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The awards seemed a little too predictable this year. At least every now and then they throw us for a curve ball and have one or two nominees who actually has a shot of winning. This year, everyone knew who was going to win before it even started.

Why does who ever win best documentary feel the need to vent their political views?
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Michael Scrutchin
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PostPosted: 03.02.2004 2:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mfritschel wrote:
Why does who ever win best documentary feel the need to vent their political views?


Considering that Morris' comments were right in line with the subject matter of his film got him up there, I don't see anything wrong his comments. He kept it brief, to the point, and was much more tactful than Moore, you gotta admit.
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Danny Baldwin
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PostPosted: 03.02.2004 2:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am firmly against voicing politics in a show about the movies, but at least Morris didn't personally attack anyone, and his remarks were made a personal opionon, rather than an insulting piece of propoganda. I can't admire Morris for what he said, but he didn't make a fool out of himself, as Penn did with his little remark.
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beltmann
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PostPosted: 03.02.2004 3:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Danny Baldwin wrote:
I am firmly against voicing politics in a show about the movies


Yeah, because the movies are never political, or at least never should be. How dare some people try to use art to, you know, deal with important stuff? When it comes to art, gimme some more glamour and fashion!

Eric
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