Category: Oscar Contenders

Wild: Witherspoon delivers Oscar worthy performance

Some films are designed for escapism, a chance to remove the viewer from the everyday grind and stresses of real life and pull them into somewhere new and exciting. Other films are meant to draw the viewer into a cinematic experience, offering us something to learn from along the way. Cheryl Strayed’s true-life story of a newly single woman hiking the 1,100 mile Pacific … Read More Wild: Witherspoon delivers Oscar worthy performance

The Theory of Everything: Hawking biopic astounds

Eddie Redmayne better be nominated for an Academy Award. He might not win, but with a pitch-perfect performance requiring such specific nuance in physicality, Redmayne certainly deserves acclaim for his turn as famed physicist Stephen Hawking in the British drama “The Theory of Everything.” An hour into the film, it’s all too easy to forget that Redmayne is an actor portraying a character on … Read More The Theory of Everything: Hawking biopic astounds

Birdman (or the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance): Keaton shines in superhero actor rebound

It isn’t quite fair to say Michael Keaton is back thanks to his often brilliant performance in “Birdman (or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) because, despite his long absence, Keaton has never performed at this high a level. Fact melds well with fiction as Keaton’s struggles to overcome the shadow of his role as Batman parallel his character Riggan’s difficulty separating himself mentally from … Read More Birdman (or the Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance): Keaton shines in superhero actor rebound

Whiplash: Strike up the band for visual jazz experience

How can you see jazz? It’s easy to hear and a delight to listen to, but how can one visualize jazz in pictures rather than sounds? Is it in a contrast of colors? Harsh browns and tans counterbalancing bright hues of blue? The dueling colors of black and white intermixing like yin and yang. The best independent film of our time — winner of … Read More Whiplash: Strike up the band for visual jazz experience

Interstellar: Christopher Nolan hits space odyssey out of the park

Epic. Everything about the space odyssey “Interstellar” crafted from the mind of director Christopher Nolan oozes with the grandiose brushstrokes of a supreme master of cinema. One of 2014’s best offerings, the film is a breath of fresh air in an otherwise lifeless year of filmmaking. Where most new movies lack creativity and originality, “Interstellar” bathes in it. There is no other movie like … Read More Interstellar: Christopher Nolan hits space odyssey out of the park

Nightcrawler: Gyllenhaal dominates screen in mesmerizing performance

You’ll probably need more than one viewing to fully appreciate the incredibly cerebral “Nightcrawler,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal as a neurotic loner who stumbles into a career as a “nightcrawler” — a freelance television cameraman tasked with filming crime scenes and car accidents. Though its trailer focuses more on the action, “Nightcrawler” is a fairly “talky” film, with Gyllenhaal’s Lou getting most of the movie’s … Read More Nightcrawler: Gyllenhaal dominates screen in mesmerizing performance

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Gone Girl: Chilling tale makes great use of Affleck, Pike

That subversive grin smeared across Ben Affleck’s face has been plastered all over television and social media for weeks now as “Gone Girl,” the David Fincher adaptation of the best-selling Gillian Flynn novel, hit theaters at the beginning of the month. It’s a smart marketing ploy and an ingenious casting choice by Fincher to center his film around Affleck, whose natural charm mixed with … Read More Gone Girl: Chilling tale makes great use of Affleck, Pike