Tom Hanks again. Really.
Actually I liked him much better as Captain Phillips than as Walt Disney, which is not to say that I liked him all that much. I didn’t. But I didn’t like the writing or the movie much either, so there we go.
Why is this nominated for any awards? I don’t get it.
Here’s what I have to say: if you’ve seen the trailer, you’ve seen the movie. It tells pretty much the entire story, because there’s really not much story. And what the trailer hints at–some kind of interesting Stockholm syndrome (identifying with one’s captors) relationship that reveals twisted and connected humanity under the worst circumstances–the movie fails to deliver.
Enough said, really. It was a nothing of a movie. If you want suspense this season, see American Hustle. There’s story, humanity, originality, wildly spontaneous acting. In this…well, Hanks has a one good scene at the end, and Barkhad Adbi is great throughout, but it’s just not enough. At all.
In comparison, Nebraska is excellent. And, Nebraska is just excellent, period. It’s very funny, and I love the way it sometimes just lets an image say so much. For example, there’s a long held moment of the men in the family watching television. None of them are reacting to the game–they are just all watching. And you know everything about this family, and how men are taught to be, and how absurd it is, and it’s hilarious. And brilliant.
This is a movie that’s incredibly human, very funny, original in the corner of the world it reveals, aching in what it says about the meaningless and meaning of human life, and truly touching. I love that it’s in black and white, I love the slowness of the action and the way it lets you really see the characters and who they are. See it. Vote for it. I mean, okay, there’s no star performance like Leonardo DiCaprio in The Wolf of Wall Street, but sometimes an ensemble working so well, and a writer/director having something real to say make a movie just as good. Or better. Nebraska is that movie.