Monday, February 20, 2012

Oscar Week!

Happy President’s Day! I am working BOTH of my jobs but I’m not bitter or anything. Despite my Valentine’s Day binge after I had not lost any weight, I actually showed a loss this weekend. I weighed three times; twice on Saturday and once on Sunday. All three times I showed a loss from the prior week. Because I spent all day Saturday not eating much and watching Oscar movies, I weighed Sunday to see what the scale looked like and showed a weight lower than my lowest weight ever. Obviously, this low number is the one I recorded which means I’m down a total of 111.4. Either way, I’m super excited the scale showed a lower number this week. I went a little overboard with the cheat meal yesterday and ate WAY too many snacks and far too much dinner. I made myself sick, actually. I really wish I could work on just eating normal portions when I’m cheating but (and not to sound too dramatic) I have an addiction and I usually don’t stop until I am going to be really, really sick. It’s unfortunate and I’m still feeling ill today. Hopefully, the success will continue as I will be strict this week. I am so appreciative of the loss!

The recipe this week is another one that I just threw together. I’m a huge proponent of liquid egg whites. If you like steak and eggs, you’ll like this. All I did was take one serving of Steak-umms, threw them in a skillet and let them cook for a minute until they were brown. I dabbed off the grease and then added the eggs, salt, pepper and garlic. At the ended, I added some of my new fat free tomato-basil feta cheese. I added some toast for a whole breakfast. It was yummy and filling and just having the little bit of fat from the steak made it taste even better.

I wanted to share another Publix find. This is FlatOut’s Foldit Flatbread. It’s only 90 calories, has tons of fiber and it’s a cute way to make a sandwich or burger or anything really. It’s a great find and I’ve already used it several times.

I went crazy on Oscar movies so if you have no interest in my opinions on them, feel free to skip the next several paragraphs. I got done with all of the movies this weekend and I’m going to share my opinions, my favorites and my predictions since I won’t have another blog before Sunday. I really liked the Ides of March. George Clooney was good in it and Ryan Gosling is BEYOND hot. I don’t care for Evan Rachel Wood. I don’t think she’s a great actress and it kind of made the movie not as successful for me. I enjoyed it but I wasn’t blown away. The movie pointed out something many Americans already know: most politicians are corrupt. The movie didn’t come full circle with its story, in my opinion but I still think it’s good. It’s nominated for Adapted Screenplay. I guess I understand why but I don’t think it should win.

I did not like Margin Call at all. Despite the all star cast (Kevin Spacey, Demi Moore, Jeremy Irons, Simon Baker, Stanley Tucci and many others), it was confusing and boring. It was about stocks and trading and a company going under. I didn’t understand the lingo and it wasn’t good enough to mask that. I think the general idea is that rich people suck and take advantage of poor people. Again, this is something most people are aware of. It takes place in a 24 hour period and aside from a nice British accent from Paul Bettany, I wasn’t that impressed. Also, Aasif Mandvi was a writer and actor in the movie and he is a regular on the Daily Show…it was really weird seeing him try to be serious. I don’t know. It just wasn’t my favorite movie. It was nominated for Original Screenplay. I don’t agree with this and don’t think it should win.

I hated this movie. As I’ve mentioned before, I get choked up at the sight of dogs and horses in movies and TV even if they aren’t being harmed. This movie was a relentlessly torturous movie that made me sob uncontrollably for almost 3 hours. I was shocked to find out that this was initially a children’s novel and then Broadway play. I may be able to handle it better if it were on Broadway because I wouldn’t have to see real images of horses being killed or harmed. SPOILER ALERT: The main horse lives. This little fact might give a pretense that the movie is inspirational. However, I completely disagree. Someone told me the horse lived so I kept trying to remind myself as I watched but it didn’t help. Every person and/or animal the horse meets along the way either dies, gets hurt, tries to kill him, hurts him or leads a tragic life. SPOILER ALERT OVER. There are approximately 2-3 “lighter” moments in the movie but I was unable to enjoy them because I wasn’t over the previous, horrific scene. I was disturbed long after the movie, swearing off all Spielberg movies, whether I like them or not. I guess some people loved it and I for one, am concerned about those people and think they should seek help immediately. I have no idea if the movie was made well because I was too busy wiping snot off my pillow and trying not to have an anxiety attack. I am not exaggerating either, you can ask Jordan, I was a complete wreck. It’s nominated for best picture for some sick reason. It shouldn’t win and it won’t.

I didn’t care for this movie, either. I thought it was painfully boring, interrupted only a few times by some graphic murder scene. Perhaps I’m dumb but I don’t know much about what was going on in this movie. It’s nominated for Adapted Screenplay (I can’t IMAGINE trying to read this movie as a book) and Gary Oldman is nominated for Best Actor (I have no idea why). I was able to deduce some key components of the movie after discussing it with Jordan (who suggested looking up the plot line on Wikipedia to try and understand what the heck was going on) so that made me proud but overall, it was slow, unclear and all together pointless, in my opinion. It’s a British film about some sort of mafia and they are trying to find a mole. I was barely able to figure out who that was by the end of the movie and that’s only because he cried and admitted stuff and then later took a bullet to the face. Of course, you should feel free to make your own judgments. It was also very long. I love Colin Firth and Tom Hardy so at least I got to see them on screen. I honestly can’t think of anything else good to say about it. For the record, I just looked it up on Wikipedia and got bored half way through reading the plot synopsis. I don’t know if that tells you anything.

The movie A Separation is the film that was made in Iran. The best part of the movie is that it highlights the lives of normal people in Iran living their everyday lives. It shows that women are second class citizens, as we knew, but it gives different perspectives. The movie is about a couple going through a separation. The father is taking care of his father with Alzheimer’s (that part was sad) and he is also taking care of his daughter who has chosen to live with him. He takes on help from a woman and she ends up neglecting the man’s father and then they get in a heated argument, he pushes her and then she accuses him of causing her to miscarry her baby. The rest of the movie centers around this accusation. The movie was pretty good. Obviously, there are subtitles and there are many cases where they were speaking really fast so it was hard to keep up. I liked it overall but I wasn’t blown away. The movie felt sort of unresolved and not in a good way. I don’t have much negative to say about the movie and I’m glad that it’s getting attention because I think the perspective is important but as a movie, I am not sure it deserves the win for Original Screenplay.

I think two of the marks for a GOOD movie is when A) the movie can make you feel sympathy for a bad person (or a formerly bad person) and B) it can make you care about something that you couldn’t care less about in everyday life. For me, the movie Warrior did both of these things. I think it may have had something to do with the fact that the the four movies I watched prior to this one didn’t do much for me. This movie resembled last year’s The Fighter in many ways as it chronicled the fighting life of two brothers. It was also very different and shined in its own way. I was actually disappointed that Nick Nolte was the only nomination this movie got. I’m not really a huge fan of his but thought he did a great job in this movie and the nomination was well-deserved. Like Moneyball, this movie made me get into a sport (MMA fighting) that I am normally not a fan of so…I think that’s pretty good. Also, it doesn’t hurt that there were two highly attractive boys that spent most of the movie shirtless. The movie had layers, a plot that went all the way around, wasn’t pretentious…call me crazy…but it was a much needed break from trying to figure out why I’m supposed to be moved by all of these other movies.

The last movie I watched was A Better Life. Demian Bichir is nominated for Best Actor in the movie and that’s the only nod this movie got. He is in the show Weeds but he plays such a different role in the movie, I didn’t recognize him. This movie was…solid. It didn’t blow me out of the water but I thought it was good. It’s also another movie that gives an important, different perspective that I think Americans should see. It follows the life of an illegal immigrant and his teenage son who is contemplating the gang life. The father faces many trials and works very hard all the while trying to connect to his son. It shows the trials that Mexican immigrants face without shoving it in your face. There are two sides to every story and this shows the immigration process in another light. I thought the nomination was deserved and I think perhaps it deserved a bit more recognition than it got.

I also saw some of the movies in the minor categories and I will more than likely see more of them in the coming weeks but not in time for the Oscars this Sunday. I will make favorites and predictions only for categories that I’ve seen movies in…no sense in telling you my best guess in the short films and other smaller categories. Some of the categories were VERY hard to choose favorites so some of them are extremely close for me.

Costume Design- I’ve only seen 2 of the five nominated which were The Artist and Hugo (the other nominees I haven’t seen: Anonymous, Jane Eyre and W.E.). I think Hugo should take this, personally. Who I think will win: The Artist.

Sound Editing- I’ve only seen 3 of these: Hugo, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and War Horse (the other nominees I haven’t seen: Drive & Transformers: Dark of the Moon). I think Hugo should win this and I think it will.

Sound Mixing-I’ve seen four of these: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Hugo, Moneyball and War Horse (the other nominee I haven’t seen: Transformers: Dark of the Moon). Who I think will win: Hugo.

Film Editing: My favorites in order: 1)Hugo 2)The Artist 3)The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo 4)Moneyball 5)The Descendants. Who I think will win: The Artist.

The only foreign language film I’ve seen is A Separation and I think it will win. The other nominees are Bullhead, Footnote, In Darkness and Monsieur Lazhar.

Original Score-I’ve seen 4 of these: The Artist, Hugo, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and War Horse. The other nominee I haven’t seen is The Adventures of Tintin. I don’t have a favorite in this category. Who I think will win: The Artist.

Visual Effects: I’ve seen 2 of these: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 and Hugo. The other nominees I haven’t seen are: Real Steel, Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Clearly, I pick Harry Potter as my favorite and I think it might even win.

Art Direction- My favorites in order: 1)Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 2)Hugo 3)The Artist 4)Midnight in Paris 5) War Horse. Who I think will win: Hugo.

Makeup-My favorites in order: 1)Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 2)The Iron Lady 3)Albert Nobbs. Who I think will win: The Iron Lady.

Documentary Feature-I’ve only seen two of these: Hell and Back Again and If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front (the other nominees I haven’t seen: Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory, Pina, Undefeated). They were both good but I liked If a Tree Falls, better. Who I think will win: Undefeated. This was based off research and different opinions of bloggers.

Cinematography-My favorites in order: 1)Hugo 2)The Tree of Life 3)The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo 4)The Artist 5) War Horse. This was a tough call for this category. Who I think will win: The Tree of Life (the only one it deserves)

Adapted Screenplay-My favorites in order: 1)Hugo 2)The Ides of March 3)The Descendants 4)Moneyball 5)Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. Who I think will win: The Descendants

Original Screenplay-My favorites in order: 1)The Artist 2)Bridesmaids 3)A Separation 4)Midnight in Paris 5)Margin Call. Who I think will win: Midnight in Paris.

Directing- My favorites in order: 1)The Artist 2)Hugo 3)The Descendants 4)Midnight in Paris 5)The Tree of Life. Who I think will win: The Artist.

Supporting Actor- My favorites in order: 1)Christopher Plummer, Beginners 2)Nick Nolte, Warrior 3)Max von Sydow, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close 4)Jonah Hill, Moneyball, 5)Kenneth Branagh, My Week with Marilyn. These were all very close for me. Who I think will win: Christopher Plummer, Beginners.

Supporting Actress-My favorites in order: 1)Octavia Spencer, The Help 2)Jessica Chastain, The Help 3)Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids 4)Berenice Bejo, The Artist, 5)Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs. Again, all of them were great. Who I think will win: Octavia Spencer, The Help.

Leading Actor-My favorites in order: 1) Jean Dujardin, The Artist 2) Demian Bichir, A Better Life 3) Brad Pitt, Moneyball 4) George Clooney, The Descendants 5) Gary Oldman, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. These were also hard to pick…1 and 2 were close and so were 3 and 4. Who I think will win: Jean Dujardin, The Artist.

Leading Actress- My favorites in order: 1)Viola Davis, The Help 2) Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady 3)Michelle Williams, My Week with Marilyn, 4)Rooney Mara, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo 5)Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs. They were all fantastic. Who I think will win: Viola Davis, The Help.

Best Picture- My favorites in order(I choose favorites based on the movies that I would want to watch multiple times): 1) The Help 2) Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close 3)Moneyball 4) Hugo 5) The Artist 6) The Descendants (3-6 were all so close…it was a tough decision) 7) Midnight in Paris 8) The Tree of Life 9) War Horse. Who I think will win: The Artist.

Phew, that was a lot. Thanks for sticking with me. Don't won't have to endure anymore ridiculously long blogs about movies until next year. I know that I am supposed to be proper and use quotation marks for these movies (especially since I’m an English teacher) but mostly I was just lazy…so forgive me if you ever see punctuation errors. I know the rules, I just choose to skip them sometimes.

I am excited to see what all happens. It should be a fun night.

Obviously, these are all just opinions. That’s the beauty of it all…everyone reacts differently.

I hope you all have a wonderful week! Bye!

“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.” Aibileen, The Help

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on your new low weight!!!

    I enjoyed Operation Oscar with you this year, as always, even though it seems like we watched less movies together this year than ever. But, I enjoyed your rankings, thoughts and predictions! I'll have mine up later this week. I definitely some similarities, but differences too.

    The Help was definitely my favorite movie too. It's just fantastic. And, I love the quote. It makes my heart warm!


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