Of Oscar Nominees and Disgruntled Critics

The seven days following the announcement of Oscar nominations should be designated "Disgruntled Critics Week." I confess, I often count myself among the soured when it comes to considering what was (and wasn't) nominated by the Academy. After finally seeing all of 2011's "Best Picture" nominees, I can say I have some problems. I don't want to unjustly belittle, though. It's not all bad by any stretch. Among the nine "Best Picture" nominees, one is my favorite film of the year (The Tree of L … [Read more...]

The Moviegoer: "The Descendants" and the Search for Stewardship

Each week in The Moviegoer, Nick Olson examines new and upcoming films.Looking back, the most annoying scene from the preview for The Descendants may have embodied what, for me, made Payne’s film so underwhelming. The trailer’s most memorable scene is when Matt King’s (George Clooney) father-in-law, Scott Thorson (Robert Forster), announces to family friend tag-a-long Sid (Nick Krause), “I’m going to punch you,” and then follows through. Which is to say: The film’s comedic elements felt contriv … [Read more...]