Tag Archive: chiwetel ejiofor


keirachewie

Alright, NOW it’s officially the holiday season!

Time to drink that hot cocoa (yes even in L.A. it’s a little chilly…)

Time to throw on your favorite carols (which will be the next couple Sundays…)

And of course, time to watch your favorite holiday themed spoofs (starring the Prince of Gotham!)

Enjoy!

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12-years-a-slave

Here are the nominees for Lead Actress:
Amy Adams
Cate Blanchett
Sandra Bullock
Judi Dench
Meryl Streep
Who Should Win
MALIK: It’s the freshest performance in my mind, but I think the most filled out performance was Judi Dench in Philomena.  Don’t think she’ll win though.
ART: I agree. Judi Dench is pretty great. But, Cate Blacnhett is fierce. Been a fan for years. Just one of those actresses where anything she does, you gotta take notice.
Who Will Win
MALIK: Probably Cate Blanchett, though I will always argue it’s way too much Blanche Dubois for my personal taste.
ART: You may be right, but she does a great Blanche. Sandra Bullock did an underrated turn in Gravity and I wish she received more recognition, but Cate will take this category.
Who We Want to Win
MALIK:  I’d like to see Dame Judi honestly.  Not saying I hope she retires, but it would be a nice capper to an impressive career.
ART: Whoever Malik wants to win, who is… kidding. I’m a fan of each actress in this category. But, Cate had the showiest role, with the least controversy. Certainly, Amy Adams is on the fast track to being a frontrunner, but the film, Blue Jasmine completely lives or dies based on Cate’s performances and it would not have the attention it has without her effort. She should take this.
And here are the nominees for Lead Actor:
Christian Bale
Bruce Dern
Leonardo DiCaprio
Chiwetel Ejiofor
Matthew McConaughey
Who Should Win
MALIK: McConaughey is on an absolute tear right now, but he’s earned it.
ART: I agree. He may pull a Bo Jackson in acting and win in an Oscar for his movie work and an Emmy for his TV work, because his acting in Showtime’s True Detective has been just as stellar. I’m not sure what happened, but it’s like somebody sat him down and was like, “Yo, people mostly know you for the mellow California accent and taking your shirt off, what you gonna do about that?” He’s on a roll.
Who Will Win
MALIK: Alright alright alright…
ART: Christian Bale already has an Oscar and Leo is Leo. Bruce Dern may be the sentimental favorite and dark horse and Chiwetel will be lauded for simply getting a nomination. Matthew McConaughey, the guy wasn’t taken seriously even three years ago, will take this. Oscar loves a great comeback story.
Who We Want to Win
MALIK: Even though I’ll probably lose every dramatic role I want for the rest of my life to him and David Oyelowo, it’d be nice if Chewie won.
ART: I really, really want to say Chiwetel, for obvious reasons. May still say it… His turn was the only one that nearly moved me to tears, especially within the last ten minutes of the film. But, Matthew McConaughey really went all out with his portrayal. That dude earned it this year.
Last post of the week will break down one of the most unpredictable Best Picture races in a few years…

 

QuvenzhaneFL12yearsSlavefull5001

Where to begin with this one…

All public record but a little of my own background again: both sides of my family are from rural Louisiana.  Some of my most vivid childhood memories are of my father taking me to visit my great-grandmother and his aunt, and their small (I mean, three room small) house out in the country.  And I have memories of my father and my uncle showing me the plantation where they would pick pecans for spare change.  On the other side, some of my favorite memories are of my cousins and I running through the sugar cane fields across from my grandfather’s house.  And when you’re, you know, 6, the lesson is ‘respect your elders’.  Then you get older and you start connecting some dots.  And if your’e naturally curious like me, you start connecting A LOT of dots…

I open with that to say that I heard ’12 Years a Slave’ was ‘shocking and uncomfortable’, but I didn’t cry or turn away from the screen.  I was visibly moved, maybe…twice?  My overall attitude through the whole thing was pretty much, ‘Yeah, that’s what happened. That was pretty normal.’

BUT THAT’S ME, with my (knowledge of my) legacy and film nerd attitude.  On the other hand, there was a hell of a lot of sniffling and audible gasping and shock running through the rest of the theater.

The ‘based on a true story’ follows a freeman from the North who is sold into slavery and what he sees/endures in the South when his family and all of his humanity is stripped away.  It’s a great script by John Ridley, Steve McQueen directs the story without pulling any punches.  Chiwetel Ejiofor holds it down as the main character, and Michael Fassbender completely nails it as the main villain of this story.

I’ve deliberately turned off my normal sarcasm so you’ll know I think this is a must see film.  Don’t necessarily hold me to this (yet) but my gut feeling is this needs to be on the very short list with Malcolm X as ‘films that give you a very good sense of the black experience in America’.  Again this is my mind working, but without hitting you over the head with it, I thought the film had elements in there you could point at and say ‘this is why so many of things that black people still get sensitive about, from attacks on Obama (that don’t feel politically based) to interracial relationships to how Islam became an attractive alternative to Christianity in radical black circles, it ALL can be traced back to slavery.  All of it.

And it never feels like ‘a history lesson,’ it’s the story of one man overcoming impossible odds.  Well done.  OK, you can tell I enjoyed this film right?

Viva Prestige Movie Season!

Have a good weekend!