Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Oscar Project 2016: The Big Short

Movie: The Big Short

I mostly enjoyed The Big Short, and I thought it did a good job of making a complicated big economic issue interesting and explicable. I'm of two minds about the various gimmicks they used to get there, though. I thought they were distracting and took some of the power out of the story. But at the same time, I'm not sure there was another good way to explain the concepts that honestly needed to be explained. And when I said this to my dad, he said he thought the gimmicks were perfectly appropriate for a movie about fraud, which is . . . also a good point.

Availability: In some theaters, and also available for digital purchase or rental.

Nominated in:

Best Picture: It's not my choice, but I wouldn't be wildly upset if it won. It was interesting and ambitious and well-made and dealt with important issues.

Actor in a Supporting Role: Until a few days ago, I honestly thought Bale was nominated for Lead Actor. So. Huh. I thought he did a very good job here, staying just this side of caricature.

Directing: Sure. It had a very strong point of view and a lot going on and seemed well-directed.

Film Editing: Yes, some very interesting decisions there; clearly a lot of attention was paid to the editing. (I first typoed "intention", but that too, really - the choices felt very intentional.)

Writing (Adapted Screenplay): Yeah, okay, I wouldn't be upset. It turned a non-fiction book into a narrative that often felt like fiction (in a storytelling sense) while scrupulously pointing out when it strayed from facts. As I mentioned, I'm of mixed feelings about some of the narrative gimmicks it used, but they may have been the best way to make the whole thing work.

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