The Oscar-Nominated Friday Open Thread

Bruce Bennett

It really is an honor just to be nominated.

Oscar nominations have been announced. "Jackass: Bad Grandpa" has as many nominations as "Inside Llewyn Davis" which seems about right I guess. Some of you don't care at all (you only care about who Jennifer Lawrence is wearing! Will it be Vera Wang? TUNE IN TO FIND OUT!) Others of you are fine connoisseurs and critics of culture and movies (looking at you Mr. Duggan). Me? I'm in between. I like film criticism, but I have little time or energy to see many films. Here, for example, is my ranking of the best films of 2013 that I actually saw.

1. "Planes"

2. "Upstream Color"

Both were terrible. I saw "Planes" with my five year old, because he is five years old, and he likes planes. The movie "Planes" is about planes you see. Now, I'm not a snob who thinks adults can't enjoy a good animated film. I liked "Cars" quite a bit. I loved "Wall*E". I even liked parts of "Avatar" (c'mon, its just one big pretty cartoon).

But "Planes" was ninety minutes of boredom. Most cartoons these days are funny. This one wasn't. And I don't need adult-wink-wink humor that kids won't get. I mean any kind of jokes - physical humor, witty comebacks, knock-knock jokes, nothing. The plot was boring and didn't really make sense. There are stupid ethnic stereotypes and its clear they were trying to market to a worldwide audience. The moral of the story is stupid and cliche (you can do anything if you just try your best! Even Chris Getz can win a home run title!) It was awful. I apologized to my son. He said his favorite part was when they showed the trailer for "The Lego Movie" (opens nationwide February 7).

"Upstream Color" was much anticipated by me as the long-awaited follow up by Shane Carruth, the writer/director/star of "Primer", the brilliant indie sci/fi time travel flick from 2004. Its about a woman who is basically kidnapped and endures a very odd hostage situation that leaves her permanently emotionally scarred, and metaphysically connected with other people who have endured the same situation. Here is my thought process during the movie.

"Wow, this movie is gorgeous to look at. What great filmmaking."

"Wow, that's creepy!"

"Hmm, this movie is kinda slow. That's okay, I don't mind slow movies as long as there is some kinda pay off."

"Still gorgeous to look at!"

(checks Twitter)

"Aw, baby pigs are so cute."

(checks email)

"How long is this movie again?"

(checks Royals Review)

"Uh, that's it? The end?"

And then I turned it off and didn't think about it again until just now. It left that big of an impression on me. Anyway, it was more boring than "Planes" I guess.

Anyway, that's my film reviews of all the movies I saw. I need to get out more.

Four Oscar-nominated questions:

1. What was your favorite movie of the last year?

2. Taking my kids to see the World Famous Harlem Globetrotters next week. What is the coolest event your parents ever took you to as a kid?

3. Where do you predict Masahiro Tanaka, Matt Garza, Ubaldo Jimenez, and Ervin Santana sign?

4. What is the best soup?

BONER: What do you predict will win at the Oscars? Any category you choose to pick.

BONER 2: Rank these Oscar-nominated actresses: Jennifer Lawrence, Amy Adams, Jessica Chastain, Reese Witherspoon

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