Category: Movie Opinions

The Ninja Turtle Controversy

Like a lot of people my age, I was a die hard Ninja Turtles fan as a kid, and still am to this day.  I still have the movies, DVDs of the show, action figures buried in my garage, yadda, yadda, yadda.  I could go on all day.  Bottom-line: I love the Ninja Turtles.  So when I found out there was going to be a revamped live action turtles movie, I got pretty excited.  This will be a reboot, and I think the time is right for one.  2007’s animated TMNT was a solid film from the old universe, but it’s time to move on and take the Turtles to a bigger stage.  When I found out that Michael Bay was producing, my feelings were…mixed.  There’s been a lot of controversy surrounding this film, and it’s still well over 15 months away.  I have a lot to say, so let’s stop being a Michelangelo and wasting time, and let’s get into this whole Turtle debacle.

There are both positives and negatives to Michael Bay’s involvement.  Let me be very clear about this: I hate the Transformer movies.  I’ll repeat that: I hate the Transformer movies.  But the one thing I can say about them is that they were given a big stage, and had a crap load of money behind them.  With Bay producing, I can only assume the Turtles will get the same treatment.  And my assumptions have already proven to be correct.  The film will open on Christmas 2013.  That’s a major release date.  This logically means the film will get a huge budget, something the Turtles have never really had.

So what are the negatives?  Well, it goes back to the Transformer movies.  What I detest most about those films is the humor.  It’s Jar Jar Binks level comedy.  And the Transformers aren’t even supposed to be that funny.  With the Turtles already being somewhat comical characters at times, I can only imagine what hijinks Bay will subject my childhood to.  Will Michelangelo fart and go, ‘Whoa dudes, looks like I had way too much quac and pepperoni pizza.  Cowastinka, dudes!’  Yeah…this is a real possibility.  But thankfully, Bay isn’t actually directing.  The guy they got however might be worse.

The director for this movie is Jonathan Liebesman.  For those who don’t know, Liebesman directed not only my least favorite movie of last year, but one of my least favorite movies of all time: Battle Los Angeles.  Filmmaking doesn’t get much worse then this atrocious display.  The shaky cam is out of control, and you can’t tell what the hell is going on.  Imagine watching a climactic Splinter/Shredder fight, but you can’t even see it because this guy thinks it’s hip and cool to shake the camera while filming (shudder).

Now, thankfully, I saw Wrath of the Titans a few weeks ago, a movie directed by none other than Jonathan Liebesman.  While it’s not a great movie by any stretch, the action at least was pretty stellar, but it still had some shaky cam here and there.  Hopefully by the time he sits down to direct Ninja Turtles, the shaky cam will be out of his system.  But one of the other issues I have with the Transformer movies is that you can’t tell what’s going on in the action either.  With Bay and Liebesman working together, I’m obviously nervous.

Those are really my two biggest concerns: Bay’s influence, and the director.  But let’s get to the real controversy surrounding this film.  Bay confirmed that the Turtles aren’t going to be mutants, but actually aliens from another planet.  We all know the original Turtle origin:  They are four baby turtles, they fall down a sewer, they get into green radioactive material, and we’re off and running.  But now this entire origin is gone as they are supposedly now coming to Earth as aliens.  So how do I feel about this change?

I’m not one of these fanboys that constantly complains about things getting changed from the source material.  As long as you make it good, I’m happy.  In fact, when a story element is kept the same just to please fans, it can be a recipe for disaster.  Sometimes you got to change it up.  I always use The Dark Knight example for this argument.  People flipped out when the entire origin of the Joker was changed from a guy getting doused in chemicals inflicting him with permanent white skin to a guy who has scars and splashes white make-up on his face.  Director Christopher Nolan changed the Joker for the better.

But here’s the problem with Ninja Turtles – we aren’t talking about Christopher Nolan…we’re talking about Michael Bay.  I’m not concerned with the fact that the Turtle origin is getting revamped, I’m concerned that it’s Michael Bay doing the revamping.  But to be honest, this whole alien thing doesn’t concern me as much as the concerns I expressed earlier with the humor and shaky action.  I think the alien stuff could actually work.  And if I may point out, there was an episode of the original cartoon series where the Turtles visit the Planet of the Turtleoids where they encountered an entire planet of Turtles, and that was a pretty damn good episode.  And who knows, with aliens and other planets getting introduced, that could leave the door open for Krang to make an appearance, which is something Turtle fans have been clamoring for to be in a live action movie for years.

At the end of the day, I pray this movie is awesome.  I’m not going to sit here and tell you the Turtles are this serious property that can be taken to the heights other superheroes like Batman and X-Men have been taken to, but it’s not a dumb, silly concept either, alright!  The Ninja Turtles mean a lot to me, and I’m just hoping for something good that keeps the Turtle brand going…and if sucks, I can always pop in the original 1990 classic.


Why is Pirates of the Caribbean so Popular?

I just learned a few days ago that Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides became only the 8th movie in history to cross the $1 billion dollar mark worldwide.  This completely floored me.  I understand the success of something like Transformers.  Cars transform into giant robots and beat the crap out of each other.  I get that’s a recipe for box office success.  While I hate the Transformer movies with a burning passion, I at least understand their appeal.  But the money making machine that is Pirates of the Caribbean just baffles me.  Why are these movies so popular?

Now I’ve never liked the series.  I think all three are long, boring and mediocre at best.  In fact, I may even like 2 and 3 more, which is really out there.  They are so dumb to the point where it’s kind of entertaining, like watching a car crash.  There is not one thing that interests me about this franchise.  I guess there’s pretty good action, but it takes forever to get there.

When the 4th one was announced, I truly believed nobody cared about these movies anymore.  And when the trailers came out, I thought they were the most unappealing previews in the history of movies.  If these trailers were good for anything, they helped me to go to bed.  And then I saw the actual movie.  It’s not that this movie is horrible.  There’s just nothing there.  It’s the definition of ‘going through the motions.’  There’s one good scene with mermaids, but other than that, I couldn’t tell you one thing I remembered about this film.

I was confident after its first weekend that On Stranger Tides would go away, conjuring up mediocre business and I would never have to think about this franchise ever again.  Boy, was I wrong.  $1 billion dollars.  How on Earth does this film make $1 billion dollars!  I really need someone who enjoys this movie to sit next to me and explain what it is they like so much.  Movies don’t make $1 billion dollars without people going for repeat viewings.  The thought of sitting through this film more than once is horrifying.  What the hell is it about On Stranger Tides that garnered so much cash!  Is it the fact that they do nothing but repeat scenes from the original?  Is it the stock villain we’ve seen 500 times before?  Is it Penelope Cruz’s barely attentive performance?  SOMEONE PLEASE TELL ME!

Wait a minute…I know why.  Is it really Johnny Depp’s performance as Jack Sparrow?  That’s why people come back for more.  You’ve got to be kidding me.  What is so damn interesting about this character?  He stumbles around drunk in pirate make-up.  That’s it.  That’s the character.  I guess he’s mildly entertaining for about ten minutes, but four 2 hour plus movies?  Cut me a break.  He never had a clear goal or motive: he just floats around aimlessly and does whatever is most convenient at the exact moment.  How does that make for a good film?  It’s like the movie can just make it up as it goes along.  Not to sound like an intellectual jackass, but pardon me if I want a little structure.  I really do detest this character.  It’s the most overrated performance in modern film.

Well, I guess I just need to accept Pirates of the Caribbean is going to be with us for a very, very long time.  Even though these films aren’t worse than a franchise like Transformers, I think the success of Pirates bothers me more.  I can point out ‘A+’ elements in every Transformers film, even the atrocity that is the second one (Revenge of the Fallen).  But the Pirates movies are all ‘C+’ at best.  They do nothing interesting.  The plots are impossible to follow.  They are just there.

$1 billion dollars for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides…unbelievable.

Oscar Predictions! 2011

Oh, here we go!  Hollywood’s big night of glorifying themselves in one room.  But seriously, as much as I dislike the hoopla and bad jokes, I am excited and interested to see who wins the actual awards.  So here are my predictions that I’m sure will be wrong.

Best Picture

Nominees: 127 Hours, Black Swan, Inception, The Fighter, The Social Network, The King’s Speech, Toy Story 3, True Grit, Winter’s Bone, The Kids Are All Right

Prediction: The King’s Speech
-It’s boring.  It’s mediocre.  It’s an Oscar Best Picture Winner.

Best Director

Nominees: Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan), Joel and Ethan Coen (True Grit), David Fincher (Social Network), David O. Russell (The Fighter), Tom Hooper (King’s Speech)

Prediction: David Fincher (Social Network)
-I could just complain about Christopher Nolan (Inception) not being nominated, but I’ll move on and just say Fincher is deserving and will win this.

Best Actor

Nominees: Colin Firth (King’s Speech), Jesse Eisenberg (Social Network), Jeff Bridges (True Grit), Javier Bardem (Biutiful), James Franco (127 Hours)

Prediction: Colin Firth (King’s Speech)
-This is the one award King’s Speech actually deserves.  Firth will win it easily.

Best Actress

Nominees: Annette Bening (The Kids Are All Right), Nicole Kidman (Rabbit Hole), Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone), Natalie Portman (Black Swan), Michelle Williams (Blue Valentine)

Prediction: Natalie Portman (Black Swan)
-I’ve accepted the fact that the King’s Speech will win Best Picture, so this is the award I’m most nervous about.  Portman is so deserving of this, that if Bening wins, it will be such a blatant “Ohhhhhh, come on, she’s been nominated so many times” factor.  Bening is great, but Portman gives a “holy crap” performance.  Please Academy, please.  Do what’s right.

Best Supporting Actor

Nominees: Christian Bale (The Fighter), John Hawkes (Winter’s Bone), Jeremy Renner (The Town), Mark Ruffalo (The Kids Are All Right), Geoffrey Rush (The King’s Speech)

Prediction: Christian Bale (The Fighter)
-If Bale doesn’t win this I’ll never take the Oscars seriously again.

Best Supporting Actress

Nominees: Amy Adams (The Fighter), Helena Bonham Carter (King’s Speech), Melissa Leo (The Fighter), Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit), Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom)

Prediction: Melissa Leo (The Fighter)
-This is by far the closest race of all the major categories.  Amy Adams, Hailee Steinfeld, and Melissa Leo all have a legit shot.  I’m fine with any of them winning, but I think it will be Melissa Leo in the end.

Best Adapted Screenplay

Nominees: Danny Boyle, Simon Beafoy (127 Hours), Aaron Sorkin (Social Network), Michael Arndt, John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, Lee Unkrich (Toy Story 3), Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (True Grit), Debra Granik, Anne Rosellini (Winter’s Bone)

Prediction: Aaron Sorkin (Social Network)
-Sorkin won, the end.

Best Original Screenplay

Nominees: Mike Leigh (Another Year), Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy, Eric Johnson, Keith Dorrington (The Fighter), Christopher Nolan (Inception), Lisa Cholodenko, Stuart Bloomberg, (The Kids Are All Right), David Seidler (King’s Speech)

Prediction: David Seidler (King’s Speech)
-I’m sure it will be Seidler (King’s Speech), but there is a very small hope for Nolan (Inception).  I’m not just being emotional, I think it could really happen.

Some Quick Predictions

Cinematography: Roger Deakins (True Grit)
Art Direction: Jess Gonchor, Nancy Haigh (True Grit)
Costume Design: Jenny Beaven (King’s Speech)
Sound Mixing: Lora Hirschberg, Gary Rizzo, Ed Novick (Inception)
Editing: Kirk Baxter, Angus Wall (Social Network)
Sound Editing: Richard King (Inception)
Visual Effects: Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley, Pete Bebb, Paul J. Franklin (Inception)
Make-Up: Edouard F. Henriques, Greg Funk, Yolanda Toussieng (The Way Back)
Original Song: A.R. Rahman, Roland ‘Rollo’ Armstrong, Dido for “If I Rise” (127 Hours)
Original Score: Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross (Social Network)
Animated Film: Lee Unkrich (Toy Story 3)

Top 10 Movies of 2010

This was a damn good year for movies.  There weren’t a lot of good movies, but there were a handful of great ones.  It was truly a quality not quantity year.  Especially my top six, which are all fantastic and films I will continue to watch over and over again.  But let’s cut the crap and get into it…My Top 10 Movies of 2010.

10) The Kids Are All Right

-Great acting all around here, but most notably Annette Bening and Mark Ruffalo.  Dramedies are hard to do, but this blends the two elements perfectly.  What I really love about this movie is the ending.  The very last scene really hits hard.  You get some intense shouting matches, and the tension between Bening and Ruffalo is truly the meat of the film.

9) I Love You Phillip Morris

-What’s amazing is this is based on a true story.  Jim Carrey is such a damn good actor, and I hope someday he gets an Oscar. The movie starts out a little slow, but gets progressively better as Carrey plays Steven Russell, a gay con-man who is just nuts.  His schemes get crazier and crazier, but they also get funnier and funnier.  But at the heart of this insane character there is a lot of drama playing out.  Ewan McGregor as Phillip Morris is also up to par with Carrey’s acting.

8 – The Fighter

-The only reason this movie is on the list is because of Christian Bale who gives the best performance of the year as a drug addicted former boxer, Dickie Eklund.  Bale is so good in this movie.  He’s so good, poor Mark Wahlberg melts away when they’re on screen together.  The scene towards the end where Dickie has to give Mickey Ward a pump up speech is delivered so well, I was shaking in the theater.  Also, Melissa Leo and Amy Adams are great too, but this is all about Bale, Bale, Bale.

7) Kick-Ass

-If you had to describe Kick-Ass in one word it would be “fun.”  Everyone talks about Chloe Grace Moretz as Hit-Girl, who is spectacular, but Nicolas Cage’s one scene where he gets to fight as his alter ego, “Big Daddy,” was so bad ass, I can’t even put it into words.  The movie goes on a little long and gets a too crazy at the end, but the best part about Kick-Ass is that it’s about five genres of film happening at once and they all work seamlessly.

6) Hot Tub Time Machine

-Let me tell you something; I haven’t laughed this hard at a movie in years.  I’m a negative nelly when it comes to comedies today.  I’m not a Steve Carell fan.  I don’t like the Judd Apatow gang.  Comedies to me are no where near where they were in the 80’s and 90’s.  But for one glorious day, Hot Tub Time Machine really did take me back in time to the good ole days.  It’s just a bunch of regular guys with hysterical dialogue.  It didn’t need a Will Ferrell or Zach Galifianakis gimmick.  The foursome of John Cusack, Craig Robinson, Clark Duke and especially Rob Corddry just trusted the script and delivered with great comic timing.  I’m saddened no one cared or saw this movie.  The Hangover may be a better constructed story, but most of its jokes relied on shock value.  Hot Tub Time Machine consistently made me laugh for ninety minutes.

5) Black Swan

-For years I didn’t know if Natalie Portman was a good actress.  She’s terrible in the Star Wars Prequels and even in V for Vendetta, I felt she was the weak link.  But now I know…OMFG.  Her acting at the end of this movie was frightening.  Darren Aronofsky is one of the best directors in Hollywood today.  He just unloads the most maddening and depressing images like they’re on sale at Wal-Mart.  Mila Kunis is great also, but it’s Aronofsky and Portman who will have you reflecting on this one for days.

4) Toy Story 3

-This is Pixar’s best movie by far.  I’ve never cried over a movie, but this toy opus really tested my resolve.  It’s clever, funny and bitter sweet at the end.  The other two Toy Story movies look like Caddyshack 2 by comparison.  (Spoilers Next) The scene where the toys go through the garbage furnace was some of the most intense suspense I’ve ever experienced in a theater.

3) The Social Network

-I get so turned off by Aaron Sorkin’s pretentious and fast talking dialogue, but now I’m his biggest fan after the Social Network.  There are about 95 unbelievable speeches and monologues in this movie.  And I’ve never been a big David Fincher fan either, but now I can’t wait to see what he does next.  What’s so fascinating about his direction is that he had me siding with the biggest jackass of all time.  But Jesse Eisenberg is so funny and direct when playing Mark Zuckerberg that I just had to root for him.  But the man who steals the show is Justin Timberlake.  Forget your music career Justin, go act more.  He should be nominated for an Oscar, but he won’t.  Bottom-line: this movie kicks ass and has great replay value.

2) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1

-Don’t be fooled by its elaborate special effects and big budget…this is a character driven piece, and it’s a damn good one.  Much like 2009’s Star Trek, there is so much flashiness surrounding everything, but you still care more about the characters rather than what’s around them.  This is high on my list because there are so many great scenes that I can’t even decipher which ones are my favorites.  I could go with Ron opening the horcrux, or maybe the terrifying Voldemort scene at Malfoy Manner where he basically makes twenty Dark Wizards crap their pants.  Or how about the opening montage where Hermione erases her parents memories to protect them.  That’s some serious stuff.  And the three main actors just aren’t getting enough credit.  They are spectacular.  This movie is well over 2 hours long, but it flies by for me.  I love this film.

1) Inception

-When I read that there was a sci-fi movie in the works directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, it was destined to be number one on my list.  How much fun is it to talk about this movie?  I could talk about it for days.  This film is flawless.  It’s original, it’s got great characters, the story is off the charts, and not to mention it may have the greatest fight in the history of cinema.  It will be a crime if Hans Zimmer’s score doesn’t win an Oscar for Best Score.  I really have nothing else to say about Inception that hasn’t already been said…it truly is the king of 2010 movies.

Top 10 Movies of 2009

A record breaking box office.  Countless blockbusters.  Mediocre movies.  2009 was not a strong year for film.  Although, I think I’m being unfair considering it had to follow 2008, one of the best years of movies in my lifetime.  But there were certainly some gems to be sure, and here they are….My top 10 movies of 2009.

10) The Hurt Locker

-A little repetitive, but the tension is directed so well by Kathryn Bigelow, I’ll forgive it.  But the real star of the movie is Jeremy Renner as the lead William James.  His character was really interesting, especially towards the end.  In fact, this movie was just okay, but it’s the last third that really elevates it.  A great ending.  The Hurt Locker: A good movie, but a little overhyped.

9) Taken

-Liam Neeson.  You know the movie.  Guy’s daughter gets kidnapped.  Guy was former government bad ass.  Guy goes after kidnappers.  Kidnappers are in big trouble.  Even though the heroes in these types of films are guys you don’t want to mess with, they still have their difficult moments and some grind it out fights.  What makes Taken so strange is that Liam Neeson just wrecks everyone.  He’s never really challenged.  It’s like the equivalent of the Yankees playing the Nationals…just devastating.

8 – Up in the Air

-Great beginning.  Great ending.  Okay middle.  Unfortunately, this one goes through some major lulls in the middle, but the performances really carry it.  And it’s not just George Clooney.  Vera Farmiga, Anna Kendrick and even some solid cameos from Jason Bateman and Danny McBride are all on the same playing field as Clooney.  But make no mistake, this is his opus.  Despite a slight twist at the end, it’s a very predictable movie, which hinders it from being higher on the list, but a nice little film to be sure.

7) Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

-Certainly the surprise of the year.  Not only did this one have a great story, but it was hysterical.  And it wasn’t just funny for kids; it’s a legitimately funny film.  I love the animation in this.  Staring at the giant food was mesmerizing.  Let’s not forget about the fantastic voice acting.  Go see this one.  It will put a smile on your face.

6) District 9

-A well crafted piece of sci-fi entertainment.  I went in to this with so much negativity thinking it was going to be nothing but a gimmick.  But what I got instead was a gripping story and two characters that drew me in emotionally ten times over.  And this is how you do special effects; not drawing attention to them every two seconds, in the background as an afterthought.  Despite the third act dragging and being plagued with too many character twists, there is no denying this film’s greatness.  Also, Sharlto Copley as Wikus, the main character: one of the best performances of the year.

5) Inglorious Bastards

-Every time I’m about to see a Quentin Tarantino movie, I think I’m going to hate it, but in the end, I love every minute.  The trailer for this movie was obnoxious.  Brad Pitt seemed annoying, and it just looked really unappealing.  Although Tarantino’s big important scenes go on way too long, he always keeps you glued to the screen.  The climax is extremely satisfying and in perfect parallel to how it begins.  And I couldn’t have been more wrong about Brad Pitt’s character.  He was great.  Christoph Waltz is a brilliant villain who will probably get nominated for an Oscar.  This movie has so many great moments that only Tarantino can deliver.

4) The Fantastic Mr. Fox

-This is a near perfect comedy.  For me, this is one of George Clooney’s best performances ever, and it’s a voice over.  The story is ‘meh,’ but the characters are not.  The relationships and conflicts are hilarious and sad at the same time, which is what Wes Anderson does best.  The stop motion is fun to watch, but the voice talents are even better to listen to.  Jason Schwartzman rules.

3) Watchmen

-Talk about being alone on an island.  I’m pretty sure I’m the only one to have Watchmen on a top ten list, let alone number three.  Yes, the movie has its supporters, but many hate it.  I don’t get it.  Oh wait, yes I do.  It didn’t live up to its unrealistic hype, therefore it sucked in the minds of many.  If this wasn’t based on the greatest graphic novel ever written and was just some random movie that came out, people would have loved it.  Aside from Malin Akerman as Silk Spectre II and Matthew Goode as Ozymandias, the acting was out of the park.  Jackie Earle Haley as Rorschach…brilliant.  Every moment spent with Rorschach is memorable.  It’s a cool film to look at.  Dr. Manhattan was an extremely tragic figure.  The Comedian was downright scary.  Is this as good as the novel?  No.  Is it a great film?  Yes it is.

2) Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

-I love this movie.  It’s the best Harry Potter movie by far, and it’s probably got my favorite scene from any movie this year – The Cave.  Wow.  What an incredible sequence.  Michael Gambon delivered big time.  Damn.  The acting is superb all around.  Yeah, they should have cut down the CW romance a bit and fit in more Voldemort back story, but I’ll let it slide.  (Spoilers Next) Also, I’m sick of hearing the complaints that they left out the funeral from the book.  I thought the choice to just have everyone raise their wands towards the sky was so much more powerful.  It works for the movie, the funeral works for the book.  Get over it.  I don’t know what it is about this movie, it just draws me in more every time.  I think a lot of it is Daniel Radcliffe’s performance as Harry Potter.  He really went above and beyond, which only gets me that much more excited for the two part finale.

1) Star Trek

-Honestly, it wasn’t even close.  This movie kicks ass.  Whenever you bring in time travel to a movie or television show, there is potential for disaster, but Star Trek nails it!  J.J. Abrams is a genius.  He rebooted a franchise and still kept it in the continuity of the original series at the same time.  That is outstanding.  There are only two words to describe Zachary Quinto’s performance as Spock: Bad Ass.  But let’s not forget about Chris Pine as Kirk, the lovable jackass you still root for.  This has sword fights.  Planets imploding.  People teleporting.  Phaser battles.  But what it also has is perfect character development beginning to end.  Once again, the special effects are great, but they are background material.  We are focused on the characters, not the explosions around them.  I really don’t have any complaints about this movie.  I guess the music could have been a little better, but it’s fine.  Star Trek is why I go to the movies.  An amazing achievement that only gets better with each viewing.  Star Trek 2 can’t come fast enough.

Oscars Cloned

So a little over a week ago, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Oscars) decided to double its Best Picture nominees to a whopping ten instead of five.  I just wanted to add my two cents on this.  I completely understand why they are doing this.  It will certainly increase viewers because it will actually include movies that people have seen.  But this whole thing annoys me a great deal, so let’s get into it.

First of all, how about the Academy just gets it right with five choices.  We need ten now? Come on!  So a lot of speculation on why the Academy is doing this in the first place is because they got blasted for ignoring Wall-E and The Dark Knight last year.  The Dark Knight absolutely should have been nominated for Best Picture.  It was loved by all moviegoers and critically acclaimed, appearing on several 2008 top ten lists, including Richard Roeper, former co-host of At the Movies.  It also got nominated at the PGAs, DGAs, and WGAs.  So what the hell happened?  Everyone knows it’s an instant classic, yet the Academy didn’t have the balls to nominate it because the main character dresses like a bat.  If a movie about a pink elephant that plays poker on the weekends happens to be one of the best movies of the year, then it should be nominated, no matter what the context.  They should be able to get it right with five picks.

So what do I think some of the factors of a Best Picture should be?  Well, I really think financial success should be taken into account somewhat when considering what the best movies of the year are.  I’m not saying Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen should be a Best Pic nominee or anything like that, but if a financially successful movie is critically acclaimed and universally loved by all, then it deserves some consideration.  I think a movie that is talked about months after its release and gets people to go multiple times is a movie that truly impacts people.  Isn’t that what a Best Picture should be?  But now they can nominate The Dark Knights of the world because they are expanding to ten, but this leads me to my next complaint.

It’s irritating, because now the Academy has found a cheap loophole and will never have to give movies like The Dark Knight a Best Picture Oscar.  By increasing the total nominees to ten, the Academy can say, “We are now recognizing the movies that people actually see, so leave us alone.”  The problem is that this is actually a set back for movies like this because now there will never be hope of them actually winning.  They will just get tossed aside in the extra slots, but the Academy can say, “Hey, we nominated them.”  That’s bull!  I’d rather see The Dark Knights of the world get in on one of the five slots rather than one of the ten.

So what movies will suffer from this fate in 2009?  Well, it’s too early to tell, but I know of one that could fall into this: Star Trek.  Everyone loved it, it’s a fantastic movie, and will certainly go down as one of the years best.  But it’s going to get nominated in one of the fake slots with no hope of actually winning.  Why do I call it a fake slot, you ask?  How come none of the other categories are expanding to ten?  This means when the Best Director nominees are released, we’ll be able to decipher what movies actually have a chance of winning the big prize.

I hope I’m completely wrong about all this, believe me.  Like I said, it makes sense for the Academy to do this.  It’s a smart move, but I’d rather see them get it right with five.  Now it will never happen.