Monthly Archives: May 2016

The Best Picture Project — Crash, dir. by Paul Haggis (2005)

Crash ver2.jpgDirected by Paul Haggis

Screenplay by Paul Haggis and Bobby Moresco

Starring Sandra Bullock, Don Cheadle, Matt Dillon, Jennifer Esposito, Brendan Fraser, Terrence Howard, Ludacris, Thandie Newton, Michael Pena, Ryan Phillipe, Larenz Tate, Shaun Toud and Bahar Soomekh

Did you ever feel like the whole world was against you and it was because you were black?  Or white?  Or Muslim?  Or Hispanic?  Or white?  Or whatever?  And more than anything, you wanted to see a movie that confirmed your suspicions, so that you knew you weren’t just imaging it?  Only to preach at you that your problem might be as much your own racism as it is the racism of others?

Well, if you did, Crash is the film for you.

Or, did you ever feel like people hurt each other, simply so they feel alive?

Well, if you did, Crash is also the film for you.

Or, did you ever wonder why it is that people crash into each other?

Thankfully, Crash has an explanation for that, too – “We crash into each other, just so we can feel something.”

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The Also Ran’s — The Accidental Tourist (Best Picture Nominee 1988)

The accidental tourist.jpgDirected by Lawrence Kasdan

Screenplay by Lawrence Kasdan and Frank Galati, Based upon the novel by Anne Tyler

Starring William Hurt, Geena Davis and Kathleen Turner

The Accidental Tourist is a quiet, earnest story, about a travel writer (William Hurt) who specializes in creating comfortable travel experiences – the key is control and predictability.  But, it’s not merely his writing which advocates predictability – rather, his whole worldview is based on sticking things in a rut and making sure they stay in them.  And honestly, it’s a viewpoint well-earned, as his entirely family (two brothers, one sister) also seem willfully stuck in their comfortable little ruts, with their comfortable little quirks.

However, after the senseless killing of their child, the writer’s wife (Kathleen Turner) leaves him.  Shortly thereafter, a free spirit (Geena Davis), comes into his life and shakes things up.  And therein lies the central tension of the film and that thing about which the plot revolves – will the writer choose to stay in his rut?  Or will he embrace the chaos of the world? Continue reading

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