Well, dear readers, dear cineastes, the Oscar Race changes again and clarifies itself even further with the announcement by the prestigious DGA for their five nominees for Best Direction. It’s Woody! Great! For the wonderful “Midnight in Paris”(eight times! I’ve seen it EIGHT TIMES!), Michel Hazanaviscius for “The Artist”,his first time. And the surprise of surprises DAVID FINCHER! for “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”
Alexander Payne for “The Descendants” and Martin Scorcese for “Hugo” were also nominated. Snubbing Steve Spielberg and Terence Malick right out of the running, probably for “War Horse” and “Tree of Life.”
So what does this mean? Well, THIS one is really important, because it shows “Midnight in Paris” is being taken very, very seriously by the Directors, the guys who run Hollywood, let’s face it. And it’s a comedy! This almost NEVER happens!
And “The Artist,” a silent Black and White Film by a French director! Michel H. (it’s so hard to type that last name over and over and over, though it’s a delight to pronounce it!) ANOTHER COMEDY!
One set in France, and the other made by French people and set in Hollywood in the 1920s! Didn’t I tell you right after Cannes that it was going to be a very French year at the Oscars?!? Fantastique! Vive La France!
I maintain that “The Artist” actually IS about the Academy themselves. Or as they were in the 1920s, when silent film was going out and talkies were coming in. Even though its’ creative team is as French as a baguette! Mais oui, bien sur!
And “The Descendants” which feels like an also ran at this point, but it’s critically acclaimed as was “Hugo” which I REALLY didn’t like at all. The last half hour was brilliant, but you had to wade through TWO HOURS of childish dreck to get to that grand pay-off, which most everybody thought was worth it, but not me. Oh, and it’s set in a French train station. Where everybody inexplicably speaks English with a variety of British accents. Ick. Why didn’t Scorsese hire French actors?!?! Sacre Blue!
And now DAVID FINCHER!!! For a film that made my Top Ten list.(It was #6. “The Artist” was three and “Midnight in Paris” was TWO. Watch me go on and on about this on my TV show which is now up on You Tube at www.youtube.com/StephenHoltShow)
But “Dragon Tattoo”!?!?! Well, I DID like it. A lot. Especially considering how much I LOVED the Swedish movies with Noomi Rapace burning holes in the screen with the intensity of her fierce portrayal of Lisbeth Salander. She seemed tougher, than Rooney Mara, who now looks like she actually could snag an Oscar nomination, too. This puts “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” possibly in the Oscar race for Best Picture and certainly in the Oscar race for Best Director. And Kudos to Cynthia Swartz, the Oscar Publicist extraordinaire. Who was on Fincher’s case in the chase, and also is repping Rooney Mara! Good job, Cynthia!
Four out of those five gentlemen will also make it to the Kodak with a Director nod, historically. Maybe this year all five will.
But everybody’s jaws were in their laps when they read out Fincher’s name! This is getting more and more like a real race EVERYDAY! I like it!