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    Showing posts with label Laura Dern. Show all posts

    'Boyhood,' Wes Anderson & Laura Dern, AKA We're Already Talking About The 2015 Oscars

    Welcome to For Your Consideration, The Huffington Post's unapologetically obsessive conversation about the Oscar race. Ahead, managing entertainment editor Christopher Rosen and entertainment editor Matthew Jacobs look at the year thus far.

    Rosen: Here we are, Matt, at the year's mid point. What a six months it has been! Who could forget Jason Bateman's sparkling usage of browns and other browns in "Bad Words"? Or Johnny Depp sleepwalking through "Transcendence"? What about that remake of "RoboCop" with that guy from "The Killing"? Oscar contenders all! I look forward to seeing the For Your Consideration ads on the sidebars of Variety articles.

    That's the Clickhole version of the awards landscape thus far. The reality is that no film released during the first six months of 2013 scored an Oscar nomination in the top six categories (Picture, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor, Supporting Actress, Director). In fact, last summer as a whole was only represented in those categories by two nominees: "Blue Jasmine" stars Cate Blanchett and Sally Hawkins. How does that translate to this year?

    Well, not too well: Of 2014 releases to date with legitimate awards aspirations, only Wes Anderson's "The Grand Budapest Hotel" feels like a true contender. But even that film has blemishes and obstacles in its path. "Grand Budapest" was unexpectedly tragic in a way that Anderson hasn't strived for in quite some time, but it still paled in comparison to the rest of his CV, and none of those films really made major impacts with Oscar voters. Other great movies such as "Edge of Tomorrow," "Obvious Child," "Neighbors" and "The Fault in Our Stars" all feel too slight to make it through the forthcoming awards gauntlet. We're at the point where it might be time to put all of our eggs in fall's basket and hope that 2014's remaining features are half as good as last year's incredible crop.

    But where would the fun in that be? That's why we're writing this, after all: to push forth some crackpot theories about why Laura Dern should be an Oscar contender for "The Fault in Our Stars" and why "Obvious Child" writer-director Gillian Robespierre needs to be in the conversation for screenplay honors. Or am I just a fool who should focus his energy on real contenders like "Boyhood," aka the best movie of 2014 that hasn't been released? What do you think?

    Jacobs: It's sad when a midyear checkup only serves to recall the malaise that's preceded us as far as stellar movies are concerned. I'm battling a constant struggle to forget almost anything with Johnny Depp or Jason Bateman the instant the credits roll, so allow me to ask what this "Transcendence" you speak of is.

    It's true, though: Outside of superhero fare, these months have been rather revolting. Where's our "Midnight in Paris"? Our "Fargo"? Our "Silence of the Lambs"? Everyone is terrified of being forgotten. I'm surprised names like Darren Aronofsky, Clint Eastwood and Jim Jarmush are featured on the marquee at all during the early months. I do agree that Wes Anderson has given us what is surely the only legitimate contender so far, although I'll challenge your notion that "The Grand Budapest Hotel" pales. Months later, I'm still positioning my feelings on the film, but I might call it Anderson's best work yet. His name will rightfully reappear in screenplay considerations during the lead-up to January's nominations.

    I'll see your Laura Dern (phenomenal) and Gillian Robespierre (refreshing), and I'll raise you an Uma Thurman for her electrifying turn in the otherwise dismissible "Nymphomaniac: Volume 1." Much like Viola Davis in "Doubt" and Beatrice Straight in "Network," Thurman appears briefly in the movie but steals the two-hour ordeal right out from Lars von Trier's prurient feet. Whether a von Trier performer -- save Emily Watson in "Breaking the Waves" -- can ever again catch the gleam in Oscar voters' eyes begs another conversation, but if there's one performance that deserves recognition so far this year it's hers.

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