So I am about to watch the Big Lebowski. I have very high hopes for the Coen brothers rendition of True Grit (to the point where I’m asking my sister whether it is out yet about 3 times a week. It is not. Until February.) Then I realised that I have never seen the film that christened Jeff Bridges The Dude.
Of course there are a lot of films I haven’t seen (Annie Hall – still on the list) and with the Oscar nominations coming out yesterday I wondered what makes a good film? So I looked at the list of nominees and though I haven’t seen them all, here’s my humble opinion.
Inception I saw twice. Picked up different things the second time. I liked it, it takes a relatively complex concept and turns it into a piece of accessible entertainment. Some will say the film simplifies the concept too much but even then the special effects are amazing and support the story not compensate it.
I also liked The Kids Are Alright. Pretty simple story again but with a twist because it now involves a lesbian couple. That’s why this simple story works, because it is a variation without making a big deal about a gay couple. Gay people are normal people, their relationships have similar ups and downs as straight relationships. Grand, and it was funny too.
The King’s Speech did similar, it focussed on the relationships between the characters and the big events of the time (abdication, WW II) are merely used as a backdrop. This made the story more human and interesting. (We already know about the big events.)
Toy Story 3 – cute but I’m not sure if it should win. The main reason why it was good was the recognition of the struggle between ‘sticking together to the old.’ and ‘having to move on’ . Also a great example how a good children’s film has many layers that adults can enjoy too.
I haven’t seen The Swan, The Fighter, The Social Network, 127 Hours or Winters Bone yet. (Oh and True Grit obviously) so I cannot really comment on those.
It is true that all stories have been told but the audience needs to be able to relate to it without getting the feeling that they have already seen it. So we need added creativity and suspense so people are surprised and impressed. Be memorable.
It is that easy 😉