' ' Cinema Romantico: Random Cinematic Awards 2008

Friday, January 09, 2009

Random Cinematic Awards 2008

The big, definitive overstatements are yet to come. These are your appetizers. Enjoy!

Best Line of the Year: "Ain't love grand....sometimes." - Craig Robinson, "Zack and Miri Make a Porno"

Best Line of the Year (Runner-Up): "I’m Shiva the Destroyer and your harbinger of doom for this evening." - Anne Hathaway, "Rachel Getting Married"

Best Use of Pop Music in a Movie: I just reviewed "The Wrestler" on Wednesday and, heck, the movie might not even be out in your city yet and so I don't wish to give away the song because you don't deserve to have the moment spoiled if see it but, like I said, it's a hugely famous song you know but, man, it is indescribably perfect. It tore me up. It's like when you watch "Boogie Nights" and you think, "How did The Emotions know they were writing 'Best Of My Love' specifically for a movie that wouldn't be made for another twenty years?" You watch the final sequence in "The Wrestler" and think, "How did that band know they were writing that song specifically for a movie that wouldn't be made for another nineteen years?" (Uh oh! Did I give away too much?!)

Most Erotic Performance of the Year: Angelina Jolie in "Wanted", and it's not even close.

Annual Intelligentsia El Diablo Dark Roast Coffee Award (given to the boldest film of the year): "Synecdoche, New York". Love it or hate it - I'm still not sure which I think, and may never know - you've gotta' respect it.

Annual David O. Selznick Award (given to the movie that most resembles the old school theatricality of Hollywood and declares "Reality? Who needs reality? We're makin' a f---in' movie here."): The first hour-and-forty-five minutes of "Australia". Yes, it's ridiculous and corny but it's also glorious and operatic. See it and leave the theater after the rain comes.

Best Re-Watching A Movie You've Already Seen Experience of the Year: "Hoosiers" prior to the start of the NCAA Basketball Tournament. Pure magic. "Now, boys, don't get caught watchin' the paint dry."

Most Overrated Movie of the Year: "Frost/Nixon".

Worst Movie of the Year: "The Happening". You should read Jim Emerson's great in-depth post on this topic.

Best Rental Experience of the Year: "Lars and The Real Girl."

Movie Review Quote of the Year: "No matter how cynical you feel about Hollywood, it is hard not to fall for a film that makes room for a shot of the Joker leaning out the window of a stolen police car and laughing into the wind, the city’s colored lights gleaming behind him like jewels. He’s just a clown in black velvet, but he’s also some kind of masterpiece." - Manohla Dargis, The New York Times

There is something kinetic about those two sentences, even if you didn't care for "The Dark Knight", something that we do not receive enough of in movie reviews, something passionate which I admire. Critics like to harp and dig through a movie's plot with shovels to find faults, and that's okay to a point, but sometimes I wish critics would heap a little more histrionic affection onto the things in cinema they enjoy most. If life is so damn short, as we are endlessly reminded, I don't see why critics must be restrained all the time in relation to their favorites. In a year like 2008 (cinematically, economically, meteorologically) it is desperately important to remember that even amongst all the muck and mire there is still a lot in the movies to love.


Wretched Genius said...

The song near the end of The Wrestler clearly had more of an impact on you than most people. I didn't even think it was a good choice, let alone the perfect one. I don't claim to know what the perfect choice would have been (though Van Halen's "Jump" would have had me on the floor laughing), but I was not impressed with the choice. This may be our new Myth of Fingerprints-style disagreement.

Nick Prigge said...

Perhaps "Angel" by Aerosmith? "Born to be My Baby" by Bon Jovi? "La Isla Bonita" by Madonna?

Don't you miss the 80's???

Anonymous said...

We must be talking about the Bruce Springsteen song. Now I have not seen the movie, but I did hear it during the preview, and that was enough. It is sheer brillance! Isn't this a movie about the a gritty wrestler, about the underdog, and life after the glory days. What in the hell could be better? Uhm! And, must I say that Van Halen is almost ALWAYS a poor choice!!

Anonymous said...

So, that was a little harsh. I guess Van Halen is okay ....sometimes. But not for this!

Wretched Genius said...

"Coming Out of the Dark" by Gloria Estefan.