The Revenant reviews

Mister Tee
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Re: The Revenant reviews

Postby Mister Tee » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:52 pm

The Original BJ wrote:
Sabin wrote:Best Actor is going to be very wide-open, also considering that the three critics groups to weigh in the past three days (Paul Dano, Michael Keaton, and Matt Damon) are almost certainly not in the hunt for a win. I haven't seen The Danish Girl yet but the question in my mind is does it matter if we think Eddie Redmayne's performance is miscalculated if Academy voters fall for it?


I think a Redmayne nomination is possible, but I maintain my prior opinion that a back-to-back win for such a middlingly received movie seems pretty unlikely. I think the "it's time" sentiment for DiCaprio, a similar accumulation of career points/industry respect for Depp, the acclaim for Fassbender's performance/film, and the popularity of Damon's vehicle make all of them stronger candidates in my eyes. (I also won't write off Damon as a potential winner -- he's never won an acting award, his first win was almost two decades ago, his movie was a big hit, and if it's poised to have much stronger legs than many of us thought on its release, I don't see why he couldn't compete.) But, yeah, I agree that this is a wide-open race.

We kind of have a situation where no one should win best actor (and everyone should win best actress).

Mark Harris wrote the other day that he wished at least one person would say he thought DiCaprio should win the Oscar because he gave the best performance of the year.

The Original BJ
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Re: The Revenant reviews

Postby The Original BJ » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:39 pm

Sabin wrote:Best Actor is going to be very wide-open, also considering that the three critics groups to weigh in the past three days (Paul Dano, Michael Keaton, and Matt Damon) are almost certainly not in the hunt for a win. I haven't seen The Danish Girl yet but the question in my mind is does it matter if we think Eddie Redmayne's performance is miscalculated if Academy voters fall for it?


I think a Redmayne nomination is possible, but I maintain my prior opinion that a back-to-back win for such a middlingly received movie seems pretty unlikely. I think the "it's time" sentiment for DiCaprio, a similar accumulation of career points/industry respect for Depp, the acclaim for Fassbender's performance/film, and the popularity of Damon's vehicle make all of them stronger candidates in my eyes. (I also won't write off Damon as a potential winner -- he's never won an acting award, his first win was almost two decades ago, his movie was a big hit, and if it's poised to have much stronger legs than many of us thought on its release, I don't see why he couldn't compete.) But, yeah, I agree that this is a wide-open race.

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Re: The Revenant reviews

Postby Sabin » Wed Dec 02, 2015 5:16 pm

Best Actor is going to be very wide-open, also considering that the three critics groups to weigh in the past three days (Paul Dano, Michael Keaton, and Matt Damon) are almost certainly not in the hunt for a win. I haven't seen The Danish Girl yet but the question in my mind is does it matter if we think Eddie Redmayne's performance is miscalculated if Academy voters fall for it?
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Re: The Revenant reviews

Postby Okri » Wed Dec 02, 2015 6:47 am

Oh crap.

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The Revenant reviews

Postby The Original BJ » Wed Dec 02, 2015 2:01 am

I imagine The Revenant will have some kind of cheering section -- it's clearly an ambitious effort, often beautifully filmed, and it's nothing like a milquetoast affair. But I found it pretty much a mixed bag. This is Alejandro G. Iñárritu back in Biutiful mode, where misery is the chief emotion displayed on screen, and where even the most impressive sequences start to feel dragged down by the film's relentless feel-bad aesthetic.

It must be said that the film looks gorgeous -- put that Cinematography nomination in ink -- with one stunningly captured landscape after another, and numerous action sequences full of dazzling camera moves. And I found myself held by the filmmaking in many scenes, particularly early on -- the brutal opening battle, DiCaprio's encounter with the bear, DiCaprio watching his son being murdered without being able to stop it. But I thought the story took quite a bit of time to get started, and then once the main narrative kicks in, it essentially becomes a survival tale, and for me, this was a pretty thin survival tale. There were only so many scenes I could take of physical trauma to DiCaprio's body, his struggle to survive the elements, and his need to constantly escape human enemies, before it all started to feel tedious to me. And at nearly three hours, it's just so damn long -- by the time the gruesome showdown at the end of the movie came, I couldn't wait for it all to be over, because it was clear by that point that the movie just wasn't going to add up to much in terms of narrative or theme.

As for the dreaded "is this DiCaprio's Oscar?" question, I'll say after seeing this that I think the Best Actor race is totally up for grabs. DiCaprio's part is so limited -- although he appears in nearly every scene, he barely has any dialogue, as most of his screen time involves him grunting, wincing, and otherwise enduring the numerous hardships thrown in his character's way. I think his physical effort here is certainly admirable, but he has zero character to play, and I personally wouldn't rank his work all that high on a list of the year's acting triumphs. I assume the seemingly grueling nature of the role will keep him in the conversation, but I think his competitors will put up more of a fight for the trophy than those who have already ceded him the statute would like to think.

Actually, I think Tom Hardy has by far the more dominant part, and he's quite charismatic in his villainous role -- his presence and accent made him seem like an entirely different person than the Hardy I've seen in other parts, and he manages to make his character's horrific actions seem like the desperate measures of an average guy just trying to survive. He seems like yet another decent Supporting Actor candidate in that increasingly wide-open field.


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