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  1. #1
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    Oscar conversation

    So I figured I would start a thread for us to talk about Academy Award contenders. We already talk boxoffice elsewhere, but this is all about the films that may not be mega-hits with the general masses, but make the critics swoon and win golden statues.

    We have already had threads mentioning a few films that are certain to be high up on the "Best of 2015" lists like Room, Spotlight, Inside Out, and Ex Machina. There are several others but I am here to talk about one that will really surprise you. Are you ready for it?

    Rocky 7 Creed is getting amazing reviews and Variety says... stop drinking right now or you will spit liquid all over your computer when you read this... Sylvester Stallone has to be on the Best Supporting Actor short list.

    Stallone has now taken on the role of Rocky Balboa seven times on the big screen. He was nominated at the outset for 1976’s “Rocky” and lost to Peter Finch for the late actor’s fierce “Network” performance. But the truth is he might be even better this time around. I would be tempted to call it his best on-screen work to date as he finds such subtle, unassuming textures in the performance that both deepen a character we’ve grown to love over the last 40 years, as well as present him in a whole new shade.
    I have not seen Creed yet, but it is at 83% on Rotten Tomatoes and is getting some great reviews. I had not even begun to consider this film for Oscar contention (though I was intrigued that they got Ryan Coogler who made the amazing Fruitvale Station to write/direct this flick) but it appears to be at least somewhat in the conversation for some awards. I just thought it would be interesting to start our Oscar conversation with Rocky 7. How crazy is that?!?!

    -Jason "Ryan Coogler is about to be one of the hottest directors in Hollywood, I suspect" Evans
    I don't know what you are doing right now, but if you aren't listening to the DBR Podcast, you're doing it wrong.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    ... Sylvester Stallone has to be on the Best Supporting Actor short list.

    I have not seen Creed yet, but it is at 83% on Rotten Tomatoes and is getting some great reviews. I had not even begun to consider this film for Oscar contention ...
    You're calling Rocky an underdog?

  3. #3
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    It's a nice narrative, but I'm not buying it. We've seen this before with Cop Land. All that buzz resulted in exactly one award: Best Actor, at the Stockholm Film Festival. Not a single American body (of critics, fans, or the industry) singled him out.

    This is different because it's Rocky Balboa, almost 40 years after Sylvester Stallone (and Talia Shire, Burgess Meredith, and Burt Young) were all nominated. But Rocky's been on a farewell tour for almost 10 of those years, and I have a hard time believing that he'll get the golden reclamation treatment that others like Burt Reynolds and Mickey Rourke have enjoyed.

  4. #4
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    Saw Creed last night. Will try not to give any spoilers....

    Stallone is really good in it. Funny. Wise. Sincere. The audience cheered when he first showed up on screen.

    The guy who plays Creed (Jordan) is also really good. I didn't think he was great...but he was really good.

    The story is...well...it's not original. It's hard with this storyline to be original, I get it, but they basically take a lot of the plots from all of the other Rocky movies and throw them in together (with most of it being from the original Rocky).

    I will say that I thought the writing was very mixed. At times it's very funny and moving. At times you are just shaking your head (like - really? They would do that there? Really?).

    In the first major fight that the kid has, the camera angle is unlike anything I've ever seen in a fight scene. Not sure how they did it, but it was kind of like being in a first person point of view.

    In the last fight, there are a few things that happen that are completely unbelievable. But I guess I expected that. Overall I liked the movie. Wouldn't put it in my Top 10 of the year...but not in my bottom list either. I'm not sure if Rocky will get nominated for anything. If it does...it would likely just be Supporting Actor.

    Now...for the one spoiler...and something that really, really bothered me (and I think was a huge mistake).

    Spoiler coming...

    Last warning....





    They didn't play the Rocky theme song. Well, they kind of did during his last fight but only kind of. I mean, are you kidding me? Instead there's an awful scene with Creed training with guys on motorcycles doing wheelies around him while he stands in the street screaming up at Rocky. Yes, that sounds ridiculous. yes it was as lame as it sounded, and yes it would have been awesome if it was the exact same scene with the Rocky Theme Song. They also missed a golden opportunity to use it when I thought they were going to use it, which was a scene in a hospital where both Rocky and Creed are "training."

  5. #5
    Tom Hardy in the British movie "Legend."
    Nothing incites bodily violence quicker than a Duke fan turning in your direction and saying 'scoreboard.'

  6. #6
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    The National Board of Review just named Mad Max: Fury Road as the best film of the year.

    I really, really, really hope this reignites some Oscar talk for this film. I don't think it can win any statues, but I would love to see it get one of the 7 or 8 Best Picture nominations and see Mill get a Best Director nom as well.

    -Jason "based on what I have seen thus far this year* the following should be Best Picture nominees (in order) - Room, Spotlight, Mad Max, Inside Out, The Martian, Bridge of Spies, Ex Machina, Brooklyn, Steve Jobs" Evans

    * - Still have not seen Heart of the Sea, Hateful 8, Revenant, Danish Girl, Joy, Carol, and Creed
    I don't know what you are doing right now, but if you aren't listening to the DBR Podcast, you're doing it wrong.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    The National Board of Review just named Mad Max: Fury Road as the best film of the year.

    I really, really, really hope this reignites some Oscar talk for this film. I don't think it can win any statues, but I would love to see it get one of the 7 or 8 Best Picture nominations and see Mill get a Best Director nom as well.

    -Jason "based on what I have seen thus far this year* the following should be Best Picture nominees (in order) - Room, Spotlight, Mad Max, Inside Out, The Martian, Bridge of Spies, Ex Machina, Brooklyn, Steve Jobs" Evans

    * - Still have not seen Heart of the Sea, Hateful 8, Revenant, Danish Girl, Joy, Carol, and Creed
    I only just saw the movie a couple days ago (finally), so I'm just going to put this comment here. Mad Max does as cool a job with "world building" as any movie since the original Star Wars.

  8. #8
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    Give Stallone the Oscar nod for best supporting actor. His performance is his best work by far, and I won't lie I saw grown men crying a few times. I think most of that is nostalgia, but still Creed deserves some recognition.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    The National Board of Review just named Mad Max: Fury Road as the best film...
    Stop the press: "Spotlight" is brilliant, superbly acted and right on target. A serious, grown up film.
    Nothing incites bodily violence quicker than a Duke fan turning in your direction and saying 'scoreboard.'

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Wander View Post
    I only just saw the movie a couple days ago (finally), so I'm just going to put this comment here. Mad Max does as cool a job with "world building" as any movie since the original Star Wars.
    Good point. The way I described it was "immersive," but world building is the same feeling. Lay back and enjoy the ride. Would love to see that film get some love.

  11. #11
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    New Bern, NC unless it's a home football game then I'm grilling on Devil's Alley
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    The National Board of Review just named Mad Max: Fury Road as the best film of the year.

    I really, really, really hope this reignites some Oscar talk for this film. I don't think it can win any statues, but I would love to see it get one of the 7 or 8 Best Picture nominations and see Mill get a Best Director nom as well.

    -Jason "based on what I have seen thus far this year* the following should be Best Picture nominees (in order) - Room, Spotlight, Mad Max, Inside Out, The Martian, Bridge of Spies, Ex Machina, Brooklyn, Steve Jobs" Evans

    * - Still have not seen Heart of the Sea, Hateful 8, Revenant, Danish Girl, Joy, Carol, and Creed
    With the ridiculous number of films that can now qualify, that can't be too bad at getting MM in.

    Without having seen any of the movies you've tossed into the ring except Ex Machina; I'm bummed out. I LIKED EM, but damn, way too many issues to garner an Oscar nom. So, if it's in the mix (granted, the end of the mix) and Steve Jobs (a total box office failure) is in there, this doesn't look impressive. Go back to five noms, please, Hollywood.
    (PS..also from movies I have not seen, I bet Creed gets in. I also bet Rev or H8 get in, but not both. I hope one of them kicks Ex Machina the hell out.)
    Q "Why do you like Duke, you didn't even go there." A "Because my art school didn't have a basketball team."

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by brevity View Post
    It's a nice narrative, but I'm not buying it. We've seen this before with Cop Land. All that buzz resulted in exactly one award: Best Actor, at the Stockholm Film Festival. Not a single American body (of critics, fans, or the industry) singled him out.

    This is different because it's Rocky Balboa, almost 40 years after Sylvester Stallone (and Talia Shire, Burgess Meredith, and Burt Young) were all nominated. But Rocky's been on a farewell tour for almost 10 of those years, and I have a hard time believing that he'll get the golden reclamation treatment that others like Burt Reynolds and Mickey Rourke have enjoyed.
    Brev, you are one of my favorite and probably most sporked posters on DBR, but I have to disagree with your analysis.

    Cop Land came out in 1997... that's almost 20 years ago. The Oscars are notorious for weighing lifetime achievement heavily (although it is never admitted to) in their award decisions, eg Scorsese winning for The Departed, Denzel winning for Training Day, Return of the King winning best picture. You hint at this a bit in your reclamation comments.

    Sly has consistently brought a lot of money to Hollywood over the past 40 years. Creed is a great vehicle for him to win a (lifetime achievement) Oscar.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Edouble View Post
    The Oscars are notorious for weighing lifetime achievement heavily (although it is never admitted to) in their award decisions, eg Scorsese winning for The Departed, Denzel winning for Training Day, Return of the King winning best picture.
    Al Pacino, Scent of a Woman. Nice enough flick, good role...but after all he's done, that's what he wins an Oscar for? Really?
    "I swear Roy must redeem extra timeouts at McDonald's the day after the game for free hamburgers." --Posted on InsideCarolina, 2/18/2015

  14. #14
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    We don't get out to the theaters much so we do most of our watching when they come out on video (and after the awards are given out), but we have seen Inside Out and the Martian and they were both fantastic.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom B. View Post
    Al Pacino, Scent of a Woman. Nice enough flick, good role...but after all he's done, that's what he wins an Oscar for? Really?
    Scent of a Woman -- two hours of blah, with a four minute fit of overacting at the end. And agreed, Pacino certainly had many better movies and better performances.
    “Bob says run! Bob says run! Bob says run!”

    {good pick-up after handoff}

    “Bob was right! Bob was right! Bob was right!”

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edouble View Post
    The Oscars are notorious for weighing lifetime achievement heavily (although it is never admitted to) in their award decisions, eg Scorsese winning for The Departed, Denzel winning for Training Day, Return of the King winning best picture. You hint at this a bit in your reclamation comments.
    And even with the weighing of lifetime achievement, Hitchcock never won an Oscar for directing. Cary Grant never won one for acting.

    Which leads to a related topic: the make-up call. James Stewart arguably deserves the Oscar for Mr. Smith Goes to Washington in 1939, but doesn't get it. He had tough competition, with Robert Donat (the winner, for Goodbye Mr. Chips); Clark Gable (GWTW); and Laurence Olivier (Wuthering Heights) also nominated. Anyway, the makeup call comes in 1940. Stewart wins for The Philadelphia Story, a great movie, and he is terrific in it. But he beats out Henry Fonda, whose performance in The Grapes of Wrath is one of the greatest acting achievements ever.

    Forty-one years later, in 1981, Henry Fonda finally does win the Oscar, for On Golden Pond. He gives a fine performance, but probably not Oscar-worthy. Warren Beatty's performance in Reds is better.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by rasputin View Post
    And even with the weighing of lifetime achievement, Hitchcock never won an Oscar for directing. Cary Grant never won one for acting.

    Which leads to a related topic: the make-up call. James Stewart arguably deserves the Oscar for Mr. Smith Goes to Washington in 1939, but doesn't get it. He had tough competition, with Robert Donat (the winner, for Goodbye Mr. Chips); Clark Gable (GWTW); and Laurence Olivier (Wuthering Heights) also nominated. Anyway, the makeup call comes in 1940. Stewart wins for The Philadelphia Story, a great movie, and he is terrific in it. But he beats out Henry Fonda, whose performance in The Grapes of Wrath is one of the greatest acting achievements ever.

    Forty-one years later, in 1981, Henry Fonda finally does win the Oscar, for On Golden Pond. He gives a fine performance, but probably not Oscar-worthy. Warren Beatty's performance in Reds is better.
    Warren Beatty is so vain, he probably thinks the films are about him.
    “Bob says run! Bob says run! Bob says run!”

    {good pick-up after handoff}

    “Bob was right! Bob was right! Bob was right!”

  18. #18
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    Gotta be a best actress nom for Brooklyn's Saoirse Ronan.

    The movie itself is quite good. Definite date movie and might be in the hunt for a best pic nom, though a longshot given its modest story. Ronan, however, is a revelation. The ladies will love Emory Cohen as Tony, the love interest.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Edouble View Post
    Brev, you are one of my favorite and probably most sporked posters on DBR, but I have to disagree with your analysis.

    Cop Land came out in 1997... that's almost 20 years ago. The Oscars are notorious for weighing lifetime achievement heavily (although it is never admitted to) in their award decisions, eg Scorsese winning for The Departed, Denzel winning for Training Day, Return of the King winning best picture. You hint at this a bit in your reclamation comments.

    Sly has consistently brought a lot of money to Hollywood over the past 40 years. Creed is a great vehicle for him to win a (lifetime achievement) Oscar.
    I do not think Denzel received a Lifetime Achievement Oscar for Training Day considering he won a supporting actor Oscar for Glory. Denzel's fellow nominees in the Actor category were Russel Crowe for A Beautiful Mind, Tom Wilkinson for In the Bedroom, Will Smith for Ali, and Sean Penn for I am Sam (a movie in which he broke one of Downey's rules from Tropic Thunder). I have no objection to Denzel winning over the other nominees and think his role of Alonzo Harris is close to iconic. Now if you want to talk about Oscar snubs everyone is remiss if they do not include Peter O'Toole and Richard Burton a combined 15 nominations and a combined zero wins.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim3k View Post
    Gotta be a best actress nom for Brooklyn's Saoirse Ronan.

    The movie itself is quite good. Definite date movie and might be in the hunt for a best pic nom, though a longshot given its modest story. Ronan, however, is a revelation. The ladies will love Emory Cohen as Tony, the love interest.
    She's perfection. Right now, I can't see her losing, especially since Blanchett won recently. Beautifully filmed, Brooklyn itself looks like a wonderland.
    Emory Cohen, meeeeh, the Irish love interest was more intriguing, def what they seemed to be going for in casting.
    Dead true to the breathtakingly perfect Colm Toibin novel.
    Nothing incites bodily violence quicker than a Duke fan turning in your direction and saying 'scoreboard.'

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