Academy Awards

The Wolf Of Wall Street Review

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Leonardo DiCaprio despite being very famous and rich often gets so much stick. People often overlook the fact that he is a great actor. He has given loads of great performances over the years and  now he has reunited with director Martin Scorsese to make The Wolf of Wall Street. It may shock many people after watching the movie that this is based on a true story and if you Google Jordan Belfort you can find interesting and shocking interviews about the time he was on wall street.

First of all I will say that this is an odd film for Scorsese to make. Recently he made Hugo which was a children’s film and The Wolf of Wall Street is far more adult but it seems to have a very different tone from his other films. I did question if Scorsese was the best choice of director for this project but he does a great job regardless of what I think. Scorsese is a great director and he has the influence and the fame to do what he wants. A criticism of the film is that it is long running at 179 minutes and Scorsese allegedly had editing issues to cut it down to that. The length is an issue with this film in my opinion, some claim that it flies by but despite the film being entertaining I do think people are very aware of the time passing as they watch it. I do think the film is really well made and I would go as far to say this is an iconic piece of cinema. However the opening of the film which includes Photoshopped images and the visual effects seem very sloppy and unfinished. Some people may think it looks great but during the boat scene I could tell that all of it was visual effects.

DiCaprio really throws himself into the role of Jordan Belfort and the fact that he was able to use Belfort’s book as well as the person himself for research the role is really genuine. Despite some really crude and extreme scenes this may be one if not the best performance DiCaprio has ever given. I know DiCaprio is a really good actor but I am suprised at how much of this role he embodied. Belfort does break the fourth wall in the film and narrates a great deal of it which I don’t think was the best thing to do. It works out at the end as it appears

The supporting cast is also great, Jonah Hill has really changed as an actor and really delivers in this film. Hill started off in comedies and despite this being a dark comedy it is a more serious film than people think. Like the Golden Globes class this film as a comedy. Jon Bernthal also gives a great performance but I felt he was underused a great deal. Jean Dujardin also has a small role in the film and it is good to see him in bigger films after having done nothing that noteworthy after winning an oscar for The Artist. Rob Reiner also has a small role as Belfort’s father. Margot Robbie who plays Belfort’s wife in this in my opinion is a weak point. I did not think she ruined the film but I felt she was nothing special. That may be jsut because she is not really the focus of the movie but as I said Jon Bernthal and Jean Dujardin have small roles but they are more rememberable than her.  I am sure that this film will allow Robbie to have a greater career and well done to her.

Overall this is a solid film with a great director, a great story, a great ensemble and a great leading man. DiCaprio also picked up a Golden Globe for this role and may even go on to get an Oscar nomination and maybe even a win. However it seems that the academy awards hate him for some reason but we just need to wait and see. I do think that the length of the film will put people off and cause many people to wait for it to be released on DVD and Blu Ray. If you don’t mind sitting in the cinema for over 3 hours as there will be adverts check out this film.

8/10

What did you think of the film? Please comment below and thanks for reading.

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The Wolf Of Wall Street Trailer Review

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Martin Scorsese is once again teaming up with A list star Leonardo DiCaprio on The Wolf Of Wall Street. They have worked together on several occasions now and likely have a great working relationship. DiCaprio plays Jordan Belfort author of The Wolf Of Wall Street and former Wall Street hot shot.

We have already had one trailer for this film but this trailer showcases a lot more new footage. I do feel that this film does have its flaws though. I do think that DiCaprio has to stop playing young characters. Belfort in this story starts out in his 20s and despite people saying how good looking DiCaprio is he can no longer pull off playing a 20 year old. I do think he is a good actor sure and I hope this does not affect my opinion of the film or his performance.

The film does have a great cast and will likely be an ensemble piece. However DiCaprio will likely steal the show as the story is about his character. The film is due to be released on Christmas Day this year and there were rumors about the film being delayed because a draft of the film had a run time of over 180 minutes. That may have just been a rumor but I still think that this film will have a long run time and maybe reach the 150 minute mark.

As the film is coming out in December that is the perfect time for the Oscars and the cast and crew will be able to campaign for nominations. Maybe this will finally be Leonardo DiCaprio’s Oscar year? However he does seem cursed and will likely be snubbed once again or even if he does get nominated he will unfortunately miss out on the win. I can’t make a decision till I have seen the film so we just need to wait till then.

What do you think of the trailer? Do you want to see Leonardo DiCaprio win an Oscar for this role? Please comment below and thanks for reading.

Early Oscar Predictions 2014: Best Leading Actor

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Tom Hanks – Captain Phillips

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Having won 2 Oscars in the past as well as earning many other nominations, Tom Hanks is known for being one of the world’s best actors and movie stars. In Captain Phillips he plays a real captain who had to protect his cargo ship from pirates. I have not seen Hanks in anything recently so I am very much looking forward to seeing his performance in this film. I do however think that he does not stand a chance of winning the Oscar even if he gets nominated. That is nothing to do with how good an actor he is it is to do with the politics of the academy awards.

Chiwetel Ejifor – 12 Years A Slave

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Chiwetel Ejifor has been in many feature films and has worked on both television and the stage. He plays the real life figure Solomon Northrup who was kidnapped in New York where he lived and was forced to become a slave. This will be a very different film from that of Django Unchained which brought the issue of slavery to popular cinema once again. This film will be a more accurate interpretation of slavery than that of Django Unchained. I am very much looking forward to this film as well and looking forward to not just Chiwetel’s performance but the great ensemble cast the film is going to feature.

Idris Elba – Mandela: A Long Walk To Freedom

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Idris Elba is an esteemed actor who came to my attention in the BBC series Luther. He was also in The Wire, American Gangster and Thor. In this film he plays Nelson Mandela. This will be the story of Mandela’s life before he was imprisoned and will go up to him becoming president. This film is not about him being president. It is about the journey he needed to take to become president of South Africa. it is clearly a story people are interested in and I feel that Elba will win the academy award this year.

Christian Bale – American Hustle

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Christian Bale is famous for his ability to change his appearance and weight for roles. We have seen this in The Machinist where he got his weight down to 7 stone. He has also bulked up as Batman on three occasions and jumping in between a skinnier role in The Fighter. Bale teams up again with The Fighter director David O’Russell. He plays a con artist who teams up with an FBI agent for a sting. Bale has put on weight for this role and is donning a comb over. Obviously we cannot base his chances of getting nominated by just how he looks but Bale is a great actor and from what I have seen in the trailer and the team behind the film. I have faith that he will pick up a nomination.

Michael Fassbender – The Counselor

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Michael Fassbender is one of the most popular actors around at the moment and after having been snubbed for Shame he may pick up a nomination in The Counselor. The story follows a lawyer who gets caught up in the underworld of drug trafficking. It is written by Cormac McCarthy who wrote No Country For Old Men and is directed by Ridley Scott. However I think Fassbender may only get nominated for supporting actor in the film 12 Years A Slave in favor of this.  Only time will tell.

Wild Card

Leonardo DiCaprio – The Wolf Of Wall Street

Leonardo Dicaprio in The Wolf Of Wall Street

DiCaprio is cursed to never win an Academy Award it seems. He has been nominated a few times and missed out on each occasion. He has also been snubbed many times by the Academy. He is overlooked for some great films he has starred in. Maybe this year he will get nominated for this role but even if he does I guarantee he will not win. He is playing a real person so this is almost a biopic depending on how you look at it. He has played real people before well and this still does not make a difference. The film follows Wall Street Banker Jordan Belfort on his rise and fall in the banking world.

12 Years A Slave Trailer Review

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Slavery is not a major part of US cinema. Django Unchained came out last year but and was more light hearted on the past slavery issue in the US. I liked Django Unchained but it did miss some points on slavery and was very much focused on sub genres and therefore the issue may be ignored by the wider audience.

12 Years A Slave looks very different to Django Unchained. Firstly it is not a western but that us stating the obvious. This film looks to be a more realistic interpretation of a slaves life on a plantation. The film is based on the real life story of Solomon Northup a black man born free in New York in 1808 who was kidnapped and subjected to slavery for 12 years in 1841. This is a very intresting story and think this film is really going to say a lot about race in America.

The film is directed by Steve McQueen who directed such films as ‘Hunger’ and ‘Shame’. In this film he reunites with actor Michael Fassbender who starred in both his previous feature films. Solomon Northup is played by English actor Chiwetel Ejifor and from the looks of the trailer he gives a powerful and intense performance of a man who has had his freedom taken away from him.

The film also has a fantastic ensemble cast featuring Michael Fassbender as the who I assume runs the plantation in this, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano and Paul Giamatti also feature in this film.

The film is already getting hype for awards season and this will likely pick up some nominations for acting, directing and writing. I am very much looking forward to seeing this and I think films like this should have more attention than popular cinema. This story is really worth telling and I think people will want to learn about it.

What did you think of the trailer? Please comment and thanks for reading.

Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom Trailer

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Despite the trailer for this coming out over a month ago this film has only just come to my attention over the past couple of weeks. I have started to write about trailers more often now and I think that this is a good one to write about.

Nelson Mandela is no doubt one of the most famous people in the world and is considered a hero by many in South Africa. His story is know around the world but to my knoweledge a film about his personal life has not been done like this before.

Invictus a film directed by Clint Eastwood saw Morgan Freeman take on the role of Nelson Mandela. That film was set when Mandela was president and this film will follow Mandela’s early life and the run up to his imprisonment.

From the trailer Idris Elba looks and sounds incredible as Mandela. I think he is a shoe in to get an oscar nomination and I think his chances of winning for this role are quite high.

The film does show a different Mandela. People forget that he commited acts of terrosim against South Africa. Its not for me to say if it was justified or not but following that story is far more intresting that him as president.

Overall the trailer really has me excited for this film and will likely win oscars because of its backing by The Weinstein Company. Idris Elba is also becoming more known in Hollywood. He has already won a Golden Globe for his portrayal as John Luther in ‘Luther’ so it is likely more awards will come his way.

What do you think of the trailer? Please comment below.