We're kinda getting down to the wire here, with my list of "The 25 Movies You Need to See Before Oscar Night" up against the Academy Awards ceremony on Sunday. Fortunately, I have but one film -- A Mighty Heart -- left to see, and I'll be getting that one out of the way this evening. As far as I know, A Mighty Heart did not earn a single Oscar nomination, but it's on The List, so I gotta watch it. Norman made a boo-boo face when I recently brought up our need to check it off, and I said, "Oh, come on. It won't be that bad. Maybe we can turn it into some kind of drinking game."
He feigned (I think) shock and said he thought my suggestion was in pretty poor taste, even by our standards. Nevertheless, vodka will be on hand just in case.
All in all, 2007 wasn't too bad a year for movies, even if some of my favorites (3:10 to Yuma, Before the Devil Knows You're Dead, Crazy Love, Zodiac, The King of Kong) didn't fare too well come awards season. I can't remember much that I saw during the first half of last year, though, which leads me to believe that the studios saved most of the good stuff for the fall and winter, presumably so that it would be fresh in voters' minds. Yesterday I bought the Spring Movie Preview edition of Entertainment Weekly, which confirmed my suspicion that Hollywood releases almost exclusively crap in the first six months of the year. Look at some of the garbage filmgoers have to look forward to in the next couple of months:
Semi-Pro (opens February 29)
How many arenas can Will Ferrell's schtick be transferred to? We've seen him ice skate, race cars, coach a soccer team... Do we really have to watch him play basketball? The guy is getting too old for this stuff, and he's not that funny, anyway. Stranger Than Fiction proved he can act; he should try doing that again, if for no other reason than to break up the monotony.
10,000 B.C. (opens March 7)
I am so tired of CG effects. If I want to watch a bunch of ones and zeros fight, I'll stay home and play Pong.
Prom Night (opens April 11)
No, I will not be spending my birthday at the theatre watching this horror remake. At least the original had Jamie Lee Curtis; here we have to settle for Brittany Snow, who played the mean girl in Hairspray.
Most of the other flicks featured in EW are just too dreary to mention. Not everything sounds horrible -- Leatherheads, the George Clooney flick about the early days of pro football, looks like fun, and I'm jonesing for the inevitable catfight between Natalie Portman and Scarlett Johansson in The Other Boleyn Girl -- but overall it looks like a dry moviegoing season. I'll have to cross my fingers for some solid, under-the-radar documentaries or even -- sacre bleu! -- resign myself to reading a good book instead.