Monday, March 06, 2006

We Like Us, We Really Like Us! The wife (that's Mrs. Enobarbus) and I watched the Oscars last night. Long, long ago, many years B.K. (before kids), we were movie buffs, particularly favoring the Ritz in Center City, so Oscar night was always a tradition. For several years, though, we've really only been able to glance at the show, and we usually haven't even seen all the nominated "Best Picture" films.

Anyhow, I didn't think it possible for Hollywood to become more full of itself, but last night, listening to George Clooney and that sawed-off Academy president, you'd swear that the movies killed Jim Crow, fomented Stonewall, and might cure cancer next week. Who knew?

I liked "Crash." In its own way, it's a bit right-wing in that it offers no easy answers, no formulas, no monochromatic morality, no easy redemption. That's kind of refreshing, I think, in the bubble that is L.A., to have an artistic statement that consciously shuns the "let's all hold hands and sing" liberal panacea.

My comments on "Good Night, etc." are already on record. Good flick, but one-sided fiction.

I didn't see "Brokeback," but I think the controversy is overhyped, and I don't believe it lost because of queer characters. Mrs. Eno saw it and called it "the first draft of a good movie."

I didn't see "Memoirs of a Geisha" since I haven't read the book, and I don't want a cheesy movie to spoil it.

And "Walk the Line"? Jon Stewart was right, it was "Ray" with white people, and I liked it for what it was -- a glossy biopic. But it surely wasn't in the same class as the other nominees.

One question: When is Don Cheadle going to get his due, after being snubbed for "Traffic" and "Crash," then robbed for "Hotel Rwanda" (losing to Jamie Foxx, for god's sake)? Wake the hell up.

Bonus movie note: Netflix sent "Pirates of the Caribbean" last week, so I threw it on right away based on Razor's glowing review. What a piece of unmitigated crap! It was fully twice as long as it needed to be, with a plot overloaded with and overcomplicated by reversals and twists. And Johnny Depp (who is quite overrated in most things) was actually painful to watch in an overmannered performance; even his shambling, loosey goosey physicality seemed stiff and contrived. The typically charming Keira Knightly was wasted entirely, while looking far more masculine than her beau -- that elf guy from that trilogy thing. A failure. Walk the plank, indeed!

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