Oscar Bait 2023-2024

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All About Us Strangers...
It's been 22 hours and I'm still thinking about this film. Its 5 stars, at the moment, but I don't know if it'll hold or increase with age...
But the emotions are strong, grief, trauma, happiness, acceptance, memory, anger.. I'm still unpacking it, whilst I sit with my legs crossed.

And I never appreciate Pet Shop Boys cover of Always On My Mind until now.
I haven't stopped thinking about it since I first saw it in October.

I went again on Monday and still cried at every beat I did on my first viewing. It's almost more devastating watching it the second time around (those who've seen it will understand why). But multi-layered and fiercely overlooked this awards season. BAFTA in particular did Andrew so dirty.
 
The Grifters: Great performance and a deserved breakout moment, but you can't take Whoopi's Oscar away - she was iconic in Ghost.

American Beauty: probably the closest she's been to actually winning, but again you can't argue with Hilary Swank taking it.

Being Julia: never seen it, no comment.

The Kids Are All Right: perfectly fine but not in the same league as some of the competition.

Nyad: haven't seen it yet but realistically she'll be lucky to get fourth place in that lineup.

Maybe she'll have her moment someday, but it's not that hard to see why it hasn't happened yet.
 
He/Him
The Grifters: Great performance and a deserved breakout moment, but you can't take Whoopi's Oscar away - she was iconic in Ghost.

American Beauty: probably the closest she's been to actually winning, but again you can't argue with Hilary Swank taking it.

Being Julia: never seen it, no comment.

The Kids Are All Right: perfectly fine but not in the same league as some of the competition.

Nyad: haven't seen it yet but realistically she'll be lucky to get fourth place in that lineup.

Maybe she'll have her moment someday, but it's not that hard to see why it hasn't happened yet.
Yes. I don’t think it’s a surprise she didn’t win in any of those years.

Glenn Close, however…
 
Saw All of Us Strangers. It was so desperately sad it kind of left me feeling numb and upset instead of having one cathartic cry. It wasn't really sentimental, more pragmatic and honest about Adam's abject loneliness and the trauma of growing up gay in that time period as only another gay man could write it. Needless to say it hit a bit too close to home. Andrew Scott absolutely deserved a nomination as did the screenplay and the direction but what can you do. The way he could ping pong between the broken self of the present and the innocent, yearning child of the past was masterful.
 
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Just saw Poor Things, what an absolutely incredible performance by Emma Stone. I am utterly baffled as to why it got an 18 certificate in the UK but an R rating in the US. I know UK legislation is ridiculously restrictive re sex on screen but there's nothing I would consider really sexually graphic - the surgical scenes are far far more disturbing. But still not hugely worse than surgery you see on UK tv. From the reviews I was expecting Deep Throat 2: Electric Throataloo but I think it's just the cishets telling on themselves ddd
 

LTG

he/him
Just saw Poor Things, what an absolutely incredible performance by Emma Stone. I am utterly baffled as to why it got an 18 certificate in the UK but an R rating in the US. I know UK legislation is ridiculously restrictive re sex on screen but there's nothing I would consider really sexually graphic - the surgical scenes are far far more disturbing. But still not hugely worse than surgery you see on UK tv. From the reviews I was expecting Deep Throat 2: Electric Throataloo but I think it's just the cishets telling on themselves ddd
The BBFC give ratings of 5/5 on - Violence, Language, Sex, Drugs, Sexual violence and sexual threat, Suicide, Injury detail and Nudity. All of those got at least 3/5 and 5/5 for Language, Sex and Nudity.

I think it’s the accumulation which made them give it an 18.

And they edited down the scene with the dad bringing his kids to Bella, saying it might breach the Protection of Children Act 1978. So we didn’t even get the proper cut.
 
I'm aware that it was edited for that (although it's still ridiculous to use legislation intended to protect real children from real child abuse to police a fictional film featuring fictional children - it's acting and doesn't feature any unsimulated sex, the child actors just saw acting!). But I cannot see how there was any sexual violence unless they're counting the ball gag scene (which is not in any way violent or threatening towards Bella). There's a mention of cocaine but otherwise I'm pretty sure the only other drug used is chloroform used in a mostly-medical capacity. It's hardly Trainspotting. I'm not blaming you at all, I know that's the official explanation - it's just an example of how archaic the BBFC is towards any kind of unconventional sexual pleasure on screen. It's just depressing, and women masturbating on screen for eg is always subject to harsher judgements than men doing the same (Yes God Yes got a 15 for eg which is bananas).

As an aside, does anyone know if Blue Valentine with Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams got a 15 or an 18 certificate here? I know it initially got an NC-17 rating in the US due to portraying cunnilingus and Ryan Gosling really fought hard for it to get an R rating. Just curious as to how it fared here because I have no doubt that the BBFC punishes cunnilingus in a way it wouldn't punish fellatio.
 

LTG

he/him
I'm aware that it was edited for that (although it's still ridiculous to use legislation intended to protect real children from real child abuse to police a fictional film featuring fictional children - it's acting and doesn't feature any unsimulated sex, the child actors just saw acting!). But I cannot see how there was any sexual violence unless they're counting the ball gag scene (which is not in any way violent or threatening towards Bella). There's a mention of cocaine but otherwise I'm pretty sure the only other drug used is chloroform used in a mostly-medical capacity. It's hardly Trainspotting. I'm not blaming you at all, I know that's the official explanation - it's just an example of how archaic the BBFC is towards any kind of unconventional sexual pleasure on screen. It's just depressing, and women masturbating on screen for eg is always subject to harsher judgements than men doing the same (Yes God Yes got a 15 for eg which is bananas).

As an aside, does anyone know if Blue Valentine with Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams got a 15 or an 18 certificate here? I know it initially got an NC-17 rating in the US due to portraying cunnilingus and Ryan Gosling really fought hard for it to get an R rating. Just curious as to how it fared here because I have no doubt that the BBFC punishes cunnilingus in a way it wouldn't punish fellatio.
Yeah I just gave that as information. Usually UK decisions don’t seem to be as harsh as US. But then in the US an NC-17 can ruin the box office of a film automatically.

Karina Longworth’s You Must Remember This has done a series of Erotic 80s/90s which looks into sex in mostly US cinema over the period:



Blue Valentine got a 15 here:

“There are three sex scenes of note - two portrayals of sexual intercourse and one of cunnilingus. Each scene is strong In terms of sexual mechanics, but nudity is limited and the scenes are otherwise lacking in detail.”
 
Yeah I just gave that as information. Usually UK decisions don’t seem to be as harsh as US. But then in the US an NC-17 can ruin the box office of a film automatically.

Karina Longworth’s You Must Remember This has done a series of Erotic 80s/90s which looks into sex in mostly US cinema over the period:



Blue Valentine got a 15 here:

“There are three sex scenes of note - two portrayals of sexual intercourse and one of cunnilingus. Each scene is strong In terms of sexual mechanics, but nudity is limited and the scenes are otherwise lacking in detail.”

The Erotic 80s/90s series is absolutely brilliant. Really interesting and well researched - I'm almost sad to nearly be at the end.

Saw The Color Purple last night (while I still could - it lasted exactly a week at my local) and I was whelmed to be honest. Great performances all round (Danielle deserved her nomination but Fantasia and Taraji should be up there too) but the direction was seriously lacking and it hurt the musical numbers in particular.
 
Finally saw May December (knowing nothing about the plot beforehand) and wow, what a movie. It was almost such an interesting study of people, in a weird way? Superb performances from Natalie, Julianne and Charles...the way they all depicted such specific types of people in such subtle ways was brilliant.

Gracie having a meltdown over the cake, nn. Such an effective scene.
 
This last five days I've seen All of Us Strangers, May December, The Holdovers, American Fiction and The Zone of Interest. I feel like I've barely let my brain breathe I have so much to think about.

American Fiction might be my favourite film of the last year.
 
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