Dec 14, 2006

Awards Shmawards

You can count on the Golden Globes to get some of it right, most of it wrong. Babel having 7 nominations is just dreadful, although I'm glad for Adriana Barraza, who was quite good. I'm sick and tired of El Clinto and his boring, overrated movies (which I haven't seen, because every time I see one of his movies I need to remind myself to please kick myself in the butt if I ever think of doing it again).
And as happy as I am for Leonardo DiCaprio getting 2 noms, I think it is the utmost injustice to have forgotten Matt Damon, who was just as good, or in my view, better, as his nemesis in The Departed.
Yesterday I was flipping channels and I caught two old chestnuts with these guys. One, School Ties, is a very conventional, predictable film about antisemitism at Harvard in the fifties. It has a cast of thousands; young tender things that went to become big stars: Ben Affleck, Chris O'Donell, Brendan Fraser, Anthony Rapp and Matt Damon. Damon plays a corrupt rich brat and he's the best thing in the movie. Smug, mercurial, alive, and utterly convincing. I am officially starting the campaign to stop underrating this fine actor right now. He's particularly good when he plays assholes, because his boyish, cherubic face is a good counterpoint to his talents as a meanie. Then I caught The Basketball Diaries, an over-the-top, don't-use-heroin movie, and I was taken aback at how fierce and magnetic DiCaprio is. He is astounding. I remember him as an incredibly gifted child actor who had some excellent performances in This Boy's Life and What's Eating Gilbert Grape, Marvin's Room and then was kind of uneven. He was fantastic in Titanic and Catch Me if You Can, but boring and miscast in Gangs of New York and not too convincing in The Aviator. I wish he lost weight today so he could go back to that beautiful, chiseled, high cheekboned, angelic face that was made for the movies. And I hope he wins his prizes this season, just not all of them.

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