08 January 2008

3 Honorary Awards

I kind of rushed myself to get the 1st Annual Fin de cinema Film Awards published that I forgot three very important awards to bestow. My apologies to the recipients.

The John Malkovich Award: Michelle Monaghan - Gone Baby Gone

The John Malkovich Award goes to the outstandingly bad/forgettable/annoying performance in an otherwise decent film. I'm kind of stretching the word "decent" for Gone Baby Gone, but Michelle Monaghan was so exceptional in being more of a set piece than an actor that I couldn't have her go home empty-handed. She literally cowers opposite every single actor in the movie (Casey Affleck, Morgan Freeman, Amy Ryan, Ed Harris) to the point that makes the audience question why she's even there in the first place. She's the "love interest" whose purpose only comes late in the film, and by that time, you've forgotten why you should even care what she has to say, or how her opinion would affect Casey Affleck.

Runners-Up: David Strathairn - The Bourne Ultimatum; Brad Pitt - The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford [for being another example of Casey Affleck's performance rendering another actor's absolutely forgettable]

The Teaching Mrs. Tingle Award: Catherine Keener - Into the Wild

The Teaching Mrs. Tingle Award goes to the actor who manages to still retain their usual "fabulousness" despite working under the conditions of a shitty movie (read: Helen Mirren). Into the Wild sucks. I've bitched and moaned about it for months now. Catherine Keener is radiant in just about everything she does (as long as it's not playing a stock character in a stock movie like The Interpreter). In Into the Wild, she manages to hit a home-run every time she's onscreen, which for the laboring runningtime certainly isn't enough. What's also remarkable about Keener's performance here is that she isn't condemned to her usual role of ice queen cunt, which admittedly she does wonderfully. Her performance is probably the only authentic moment of Into the Wild, even though more people are leaning toward Hal Holbrook.

Runners-Up: Marion Cotillard - La Vie en rose; Tea Leoni - You Kill Me [It really pains me to say that, but it's true]; Margot Martindale - Paris je t'aime

The Best (And, Therefore, Gayest) Idea for a Broadway Musical: Xanadu

All this talk in my comment forum about Xanadu reminded me, "how could I forget to shamelessly include Xanadu as an award recipiant this year?" Certain films, like Xanadu, exude time-frame, so giving it an award for 2007 is perfectly acceptable in my book. Thankfully, for those who would disagree, there's validity to its inclusion: it was the surprising hit of the Broadway season this year. A lot of people were surprised, but not me. When I found out that they were still going to use such songs as "Suddenly" and the rousing closing-number "Xanadu," I knew they had a hit-in-the-making, even if the film itself never took off when it hit theatres. I'm sure the Electric Light Orchestra music is probably sadly missing from the production, but I've got to hand it to Broadway for adapting a Hollywood film in dire need of a revival, because, well, Broadway is about as fresh out of ideas as Hollywood is.

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