Friday, February 22, 2008


Like you, I will watch the Oscars out of die-hard habit.

Like you, I will fidget, get more snacks, switch channels during commercials and acceptance speeches by teams of animators for Best Documentary Short Subject Dealing with World Iniquity to Which a Rich Person with a Beverly Hills Postal Code Can Attach herself, check the email in the next room and phone cousins in Latin American countries.

My measue of a Great Movie, or even a realy good one is simple. Staying power. Do I watch it again and again year after year?

Godfather I and II. Lawrence of Arabia, The Bandwagon, Funny Girl.

This year's crop is not so great.

No Country for Old Men is dreadful, pointlessly bloody rehash of the Coen Brothers' best work, Fargo. It is not even close to a good movie.

There Will be Blood is a curiosity that will be watched by seven people over the next decade.

Atonement, which won the BAFTA - British Academy Awards - last week is half a movie - the first half.

Cate Blanchett as Elizabeth is, as always, magnificent, but the movie is one of the owrst balls-ups ever made. No idea who anybody is or what they are doing or why. We turned off the DVD after 40 minutes.

The only guarantees are Javier bardem for best supporting actor and Daniel-Day Lewis for best actor, both deserved in two second rate movies.


Bentley said...


Thanks for including an item about the Oscars in today's blog entry. I recall listenting to many of your great takes on film during many excellent broadcasts on CKNW.

Two clear memories come to mind:
(1) Your praise of Brando, particulalrly for playing a wheelchair-bound man in a role with little or no speech (you said the people on the film set wept during a scene shot early in the process) and (2) your praise of Newman in The Verdict, particularly for his portrayal of the alcoholic characteristics.

Indeed, many of Mr. Berner's recommendations have led me to the video store.

So... your message today makes me wonder if Oscar-nominated Juno has yet to be seen by you. If so, please allow me to lead you to a great picture. Without question, it is the only one of the best-pic nominees that could possibly make anyone feel great.

Best to you this weekend, as well as to all of your blog anf film fans...


David Berner said...

I am sorry to say I have yet to see Juno or Michael Clayton, which is why I haven't commented on them. I also haven't seen Julie Christie in her nominated role, which I'm looking forward to.

I was so disappointed by BAFTA choosing "Atonement," an incomplete half-movie, over "The Lives of Others," which I think is one of the greatest movies I've ever seen, and One I will happily watch again and again over the years.

Anonymous said...


I would suggest you give Michael Clayton a miss; a movie that looks fabulous and that has some solid acting (Tom Wilkinson for one), but that is devoid of substance or originality and to me just seemed cliche and pointless. Although, that said, Clooney is imminently watchable, perhaps for reasons other than his acting ability.