2012 Oscar Movies #7 and #8 – The Artist & The Descendants

Saving the best for last

I take it all back. I retract any previous negative sentiments I might have expressed about The Artist. I admit, the trailer chapped my ass and the hype didn’t help. Fortunately my OCD Oscar Movie Completist Gene forced me to see it anyway and it turns out I WAS SO WRONG. You can see exactly how wrong when you go and read my full review.

It’s interesting how much I can be swayed by popular sentiment and poor marketing. I don’t consider myself all that gullible in general, but I am stubborn as hell and not immune to annoying bits of film. When a movie whose trailer looks crappy is getting all sorts of gushy love from the whole entertainment world, I’m a skeptic. We all know they put the best stuff in the trailers and if that were true for The Artist it would be the most annoying movie of the year.

If it hadn’t been for the Oscar nomination I never would have seen the movie and it would have been my loss. It’s not going to change my life, but it’s been a while since I was so thoroughly entertained at the theater. This is a good one to try and catch on the big screen if you can. It will probably hold up okay on DVD, but the experience will be quite a bit diminished unless you have a great big TV and awesome sound system.

Behind Door #2

Today we have a twofer! Since the Oscar broadcast is tonight, I figured I better hurry out and see the last two available nominees (me and half the city – purchase those tickets early!) so scurried out to catch The Descendants.

The Descendants PosterI always thought that Hawaii was over-hyped. It couldn’t possibly be as wonderful and magical and beautiful as everyone said. They had to say that to rationalize the exorbitant airfare they paid to get there to vacation, right? Wrong. When I finally went it turns out that it is fabulous and magical with perfect weather and pristine beaches. If you’re a tourist. Which I was, so I was perfectly content in my blissful paradise.

Turns out that there really is no such thing as paradise if you live there. Of course, I knew all along that it only seemed perfect because we were on vacation from our real lives. The Descendants shows that even in paradise, things go horribly, tragically wrong. You might have a better view outside the hospital window, but people live and die and suffer there just like they do anywhere else.

Sort of pops my “return to Hawaii” vacation fantasy.

But the movie is good – better than good. George Clooney still has a thing or two up his sleeve and he gets to play parent here. Add his beauty to that of the landscape and how can you lose? You can read my full review here.

And the Oscar goes to…

So the broadcast is tonight and I’ve seen 8 of the 9 Best Picture nominees. My Completist Gene isn’t happy about that 9th movie, but Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close left theaters before I got a chance to see it and won’t be out on DVD until March 27th. Poor planning, Warner Bros. You can read reviews of the other 8 right here on Movie Rewind to help you decide which to see and which to pass by.

2012 Oscar Movies Reviewed on Movie Rewind

The Descendants

The Artist

The Tree of Life

Midnight in Paris

The Help

Moneyball

War Horse

Hugo

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