“We Need To Talk About Kevin”, Tilda, & A Big Oscar Snub

I still believe that the Oscar race should have come down to two women, but now I realize that it was the wrong two women.  (Spoiler alert ahead if you haven’t seen “The Iron Lady”!)

As much as I loved Viola Davis’ heartbreaking performance in “The Help”, it didn’t make me cry.  It made me mad that racism was so disgusting in the 1960s and it still is today.  A denial of anyone’s civil rights is disgusting.

I’m still convinced that Meryl Streep rightfully deserved the Best Actress Oscar this year for her portrayal of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in “The Iron Lady”.  I’ve seen every performance in the category except Glenn Close as “Albert Nobbs”.  Sorry, Glenn.

Meryl Streep made you feel for Ms. Thatcher as she fell deeper into dementia when she talked to her recently deceased husband.  But, I still didn’t cry.

I did cry from a performance recently from a movie released last year and then I shook my head that the actress was snubbed from an Academy Award nomination.

‘WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN”

I’m talking about Tilda Swinton and her gut-wrenching, Golden Globe, Screen Actor’s Guild, and BAFTA award (the British equivalent to the American Oscar) nominated performance in “We Need to Talk About Kevin”.  Swinton plays Eva Katchadourian, a successful travel writer, wife, and mother of two children.  The movie focuses on her difficult relationship with her older child, her son, Kevin.

There is a scene of Eva sitting in her house eating dinner after an altercation at the grocery store that just broke my heart and Swinton is just incredible.

Another standout in the movie was Ezra Miller, who played Kevin as a 16-year-old.

GRADE:  A

“HIGHER GROUND”

“Higher Ground” is a movie that saw a limited release last fall arrived on DVD this past January.  I’ve been wanting to see it since it came out and I finally got around to it.

The movie marks the directorial debut of actress Vera Farmiga, who was nominated for an Oscar for “Up In The Air” in 2010.

It follows Farmiga’s character, Corinne, from a child in church to being married and becoming a mother as a teenager and finding God.  It’s only when her marriage begins to crumble and her best friend falls ill that she begins question her faith, the radical New Testament church she attends, and God.

While I consider myself a Christian and I pray every night, I don’t attend church and I’m glad I gave this “religious” movie a chance.

GRADE:  B-

“PRIVATE ROMEO”

William Shakespeare’s romantic tragedy, “Romeo and Juliet” is believed to have been written in the late-1590s.  It’s been adapted for the stage, film, musical, and opera.

The most successful film version was MTV’s 1996 “Romeo + Juliet”, which starred a much younger Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes.  The $14.5 million dollar movie grossed more than $147 million.

“Private Romeo” take a decidedly different and gay approach to the ill-fated love story.  Writer/director Alan Brown takes his Romeo out of Italy and stages his movie version on a high school military campus in America.  The movie stays true to the “Old English” style of speaking and, at times, was difficult to follow.  However, the superb acting and the eroticism of the movie sold the story.

Where was this version back in the late-1970s and early 1980s when I was in high school and I had to read the Shakespeare?

GRADE:  B

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