One of my goals was to see all of the nominees for Best Picture at the Oscars before my friend Kerry's annual party. Spoiler alert: I did it this year! It was a good excuse to get out of the house, although I did watch a few at home. I know there was controversy surrounding the Oscar nominees this year, and these films were indeed all very white. I hope Hollywood can find a way to incorporate more minorities and women into their films as leading roles. I never understand why people are always surprised when female fronted movies open well. Hello, women go to movies, too! And so do black people, Hispanics, etc.
I will now step off of my soap box. Here is my brief review of each film, in order from my least favorite to favorite.
8. "Mad Max: Fury Road": What? Why? No.
7. "Bridge of Spies": The acting was good, but what should have been a gripping story was just boring.
6. "The Revenant": Beautiful scenery interspersed with graphic violence. I was engaged, but ugh. I will not be watching this one again.
5. "The Martian": Funny and entertaining, but I am not sure it deserves a Best Picture nomination.
4. "Brooklyn": Very sweet and well acted.
3. "Room": Super intense. I read the book and was still very nervous during pivotal scenes. Brie Larson absolutely deserves Best Actress.
2. "Spotlight": As someone who was raised Catholic, I found this especially hard to watch. It made me incredibly sad all over again. It is really well done, though. I like Michael Keaton, and he is great here. I know some people think Mark Ruffalo could be the upset win for Oscar for this, but I thought he was just okay. I found him distracting. His mannerisms actually pulled me out of the story a bit.
1. "The Big Short": So good. It made me realize I should have been a lot angrier in 2008, and that things still haven't changed. I dragged Ben with me to this one, and he really liked it, too.
And, as so many magazines and entertainment websites like to do:
Should Win: "The Big Short"
Will Win: "Spotlight"