Friday, February 11, 2011

2010 Pretentious Film Awards - Best Motion Picture of the Year

And the 2010 Pretentious Film Award Nominees for Best Motion Picture of the Year are...

(dir. Darren Aronofsky)

From my review: "The film teeters dangerously on the line between art and trash (and dips into the latter more than once). But I stopped to consider something. Were the world of New York ballet in this narrative to be replaced by the world of pageants, the film would feel no less captivating, engrossing and thrilling. That is due to Darren is definitely his showiest and most sure-handed [work]...I was surprised by how controlled Black Swan was, both in terms of Portman's performance (which is actually more quiet, subdued and internal than one might expect) and the film itself, especially compared to Requiem for a Dream. Matthew Libatique deserves the Oscar for his cinematography, which deliciously captures the movement of the dancers in long, extended takes, rather than quick frenetic ones. I've never seen ballet shot this way in film and it serves the narrative beautifully."

(dir. Derek Cianfrance)

From my review: "Flashback structure is tricky and requires a certain control over storytelling that few filmmakers can boast. In films that value plot and situation over character, it involves making sure the audience finds out things at exactly the right time, so the flashbacks don't become redundant and the present-day narrative doesn't feel like a rehashing. In character studies such as this one, it involves controlling emotional reaction, getting the most potency out of each moment. Hats off to writer-director Derek Cianfrance and editors Jim Helton and Ron Patane (this is one of the best edited films of the year) on all counts. Watching Cianfrance in interviews, it's clear to see why the film manages to be so distinguishable. With his speech pattern, mannerisms, his appearance right down to the receding hairline, one can't help but wonder if Cianfrance is Dean (Gosling). Is there a Cindy (Williams)? Almost certainly. The film is filled with so many moments of specific, honest and unexpected characterization. A scene from the earlier part of Dean and Cindy's courtship, where he offers his unique perspective on couple's having their own song feels cut and paste from real-life, it rings so true."


(dir. Yorgos Lanthimos)

From my review: "One of two films I've seen this year that's truly unlike anything I've ever experienced, cinematically (Enter the Void also shares that distinction, though I've yet to wholly decide if it's to that film's credit or detriment). Greek director Lanthimos paints a horrifying, bare bones and often sickly humorous portrayal of a patriarch who keeps his three adult children (two daughters and a son, all non-actors), under strict lock and key. They never leave the large grounds of their house, which includes a pool and a tennis court, but is still confining and stifling. The children are completely arrested. They speak with a very basic intelligence that would, at first glance, betray how truly warped they are. But the first glimpses are startling." A wisely unintellectual portrayal of sadism. Take that, Passolini.

(dir. David Fincher)

From my review: "
Any praises I offer up are going to seem redundant at this point. The Social Network is sweeping the year end critics awards and is poised to be one of the most honored films of 2010. Everything seems to be working in perfect synergy in this wildly exaggerated (to its benefit) account of Mark Zuckerberg's (a wonderful Jesse Eisenberg) creation of Facebook at Harvard and the legal and social drama that ensued. Aaron Sorkin's justifiably lauded, razor-sharp script has an amazing rhythm to it, sustaining a subject that could have easily ran out of steam in the wrong hands. And what is there to say at this point about Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross's outstanding and unique score...A truly singular and unified vision, guided by David Fincher's sure hand. He is the true visionary of our generation."

(dir. Debra Granik)

From my review: "
I can't really put my finger on all of the elements that I look for in a film I'm going to recommend. It's a personal and often nebulous thing, trying to saliently communicate one's cinematic sensibilities. I can say (don't worry, I'm going somewhere with this) that I have never enjoyed a film that felt dishonest. Winter's Bone is so lived-in and observant in terms of the world it occupies, and I'm not just talking about the Ozark mountain setting, about which I admittedly know little. I'm talking about the lives of these characters, which is established very clearly in the beginning, with every word uttered and every action taken speaking to that in a compelling way...This is an engrossing, arresting movie-going experience that completely blindsided me...and not in that bad "You threaten my son, you threaten me!" kind of way."

Winners in all categories will be announced next week.

Nominees in all categories

Best Picture
Black Swan
Blue Valentine
The Social Network
Winter's Bone

Best Director
Darren Aronofsky - Black Swan
Derek Cianfrance - Blue Valentine
Yorgos Lanthimos - Dogtooth
David O. Russell - The Fighter
David Fincher - The Social Network

Best Actor in a Leading Role
Aaron Eckhart - Rabbit Hole
Jesse Eisenberg - The Social Network
James Franco - 127 Hours
Ryan Gosling - Blue Valentine
Tahar Rahim - A Prophet

Best Actress in a Leading Role
Nicole Kidman - Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence - Winter's Bone
Lesley Manville - Another Year
Tilda Swinton - I Am Love
Michelle Williams - Blue Valentine

Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Christian Bale - The Fighter
Andrew Garfield - Never Let Me Go
John Hawkes - Winter's Bone
Mark Ruffalo - The Kids Are All Right
Miles Teller - Rabbit Hole

Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Dale Dickey - Winter's Bone
Melissa Leo - The Fighter
Mia Wasikowska - The Kids Are All Right
Jacki Weaver - Animal Kingdom
Dianne Wiest - Rabbit Hole

Best Original Screenplay
Animal Kingdom - David Michôd
Another Year - Mike Leigh
The Fighter - Keith Dorrington, Eric Johnson, Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy
Blue Valentine - Derek Cianfrance
Toy Story 3 - Michael Arndt, John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich

Best Adapted Screenplay
Never Let Me Go - Alex Garland
Rabbit Hole - David Lindsay-Abaire
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World - Michael Bacall and Edgar Wright
The Social Network - Aaron Sorkin
Winter's Bone - Debra Granik and Anne Rosellini

Best Editing
127 Hours - Jon Harris
Black Swan
- Andrew Weisbaum
Blue Valentine - Jim Helton and Ron Patane
Inception - Lee Smith
The Social Network - Kirk Baxter and Angus Wall

Best Cinematography
127 Hours - Enrique Chediak and Anthony Dod Mantle
Black Swan - Matthew Libatique
Enter the Void - Benoît Debie
The Social Network - Jeff Cronenweth
True Grit - Roger Deakins

Best Original Score
Inception - Hans Zimmer
The Illusionist - Sylvain Chomet
The King's Speech
- Alexandre Desplat
Never Let Me Go - Rachel Portman
The Social Network - Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

Best Original Song
For Colored Girls - "La Donna in Viola" (Performed by Andrea Jones-Sojola and Karen Slack)
The Illusionist - "Chanson Illusionist" (Performed by Sylvain Chomet)
Never Let Me Go - "Never Let Me Go" (Performed by Rachel Portman)
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World - "Threshold" (Performed by Sex Bob-Omb)
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World - "We Are Sex Bob-Omb" (Performed by Sex Bob-Omb)

Best Costume Design
Black Swan - Amy Westcott
The Fighter - Mark Bridges
I Am Love - Antonella Cannarozzi
Inception - Jeffrey Curland
True Grit - Mary Zophres

Best Achievement in Art Direction
Black Swan - Tora Peterson and David Stein
Dogtooth - Elli Papageorgakopoulou
I Am Love - Nadine Herrmann
Inception - Guy Hendrix Diaz, Larry Dias and Doug Mowat
The King's Speech - Judy Farr and Eve Stewart

Best Visual Effects
Black Swan
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Best Makeup/Hair
Black Swan
A Prophet
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Best Sound Mixing
127 Hours
The Fighter
The Illusionist
The Social Network

Best Sound Editing
Black Swan
Toy Story 3
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

The Social Network

Nominations Tally

Black Swan
- 9
The Social Network - 9
Inception - 7
Blue Valentine - 6
The Fighter - 6
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World - 6
Rabbit Hole - 5
Winter's Bone - 5
127 Hours - 4
Never Let Me Go - 4
Dogtooth - 3
I Am Love - 3
The Illusionist - 3
Animal Kingdom - 2
Another Year - 2
The Kids Are All Right - 2
The King's Speech - 2
A Prophet - 2
Toy Story 3 - 2
True Grit - 2
Enter the Void - 1
For Colored Girls - 1

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