the oscars

it's a sad day when a rip off wins big at the oscars … it's not an adaptation if you only change character names and location … and I'm not sure what directing was done if shot by shot was a little too similar to the original but hey, I'm not the one who votes so my opinion doesn't count … sigh and the only one I wanted to win from The Departed wasn't even nominated …

anyway, here's who would have won if I had any say:-

Best picture
Little Miss Sunshine

Best director
Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu, Babel

Best actor
Leonardo DiCaprio, Blood Diamond

Best actress
Meryl Streep, The Devil Wears Prada

Best supporting actress
Cate Blanchett, Notes on a Scandal

Best supporting actor
Mark Wahlberg, The Departed

Best animated feature film

Best adapted screenplay
Children of Men 

Best original screenplay

Best original score

Best cinematography
Children of Men

Best costume design
Marie Antoinette

Best make-up
Pan's Labyrinth

Best sound mixing
Blood Diamond 

Sound editing
Blood Diamond

Best film editing
Blood Diamond

who would have been on your wish list?

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Tenkuu no Shiro Rapyuta aka Castle in the Sky Laputa

Some films are timeless and after 20 years, Laputa: Castle in the Sky is really one such film.  I haven't seen the Disney released version but I'm not quite sure about anime dubbed in English and I'm definitely not sure about the re-scoring :P  Don't mess with a perfect thing, I say … but anyway … I recently watched it again and … sigh … was completely enraptured by it all over again … yes, it's my fourth time watching it and it was still as good as the first time 🙂

What would you do if a girl floated out of the sky into your arms?  Pazu knew he was going to be her hero but little did he know she was the one who was going to save him.

Based off a fictional place in John Swift's, Gulliver's Travels that no one seems to talk much about, Laputa is a floating island in the sky.  Miyazaki shows why he can take a seemingly Western story and layer Asian sensibilities over it to appeal to a world of different perspectives.


So I recommend watching the original Studio Ghibli version, Japanese voices and English subtitles, curled in bed and pretend you're 9 all over again 😉

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Little Children

I love coming out of films that inspire me to dust off my scripts-in-progress and work on them again.

Jordan and I woke up early on the third day of Chinese New Year and headed for a 10:15am show … when was the last time you did that?  And no regrets, Little Children directed by Todd Field who also did well with In The Bedroom, is the kind of film that leaves you one of those lingering feeling when you watch real simple movies that don't distract you with unnecessary special effects or manipulate you with cliche dissolves and the swelling of strings.

Coming from a director who has pretty much done in all from acting, producing, composing, camera crew Todd Field doesn't disappoint with his latest.  Hopefully, we don't have to wait 5 years before he touches our cinematic lives again.  Despite the difficult themes and plots, Little Children is a lot easier to watch than In the Bedroom.

It focuses on the lives of 3 main characters who live in a regular all American suburb, except they aren't exactly all American themselves.  A stay home dad trying to to pass his bar exam for the third time.  A convicted sex offender moving back into his Mum's home.  A stay home Mum married to a wealthy bored husband, with a Masters in English Literature who can't remember why she wanted to look after her own kid.

Real people faced with real situations and over 130mins the audience is drawn into a world where they can live vicariously through the characters.  At the end of it, the simple stories reminds us that while it's so easy to take  things for granted, life could be a lot easier if we didn't.  Sigh … didn't we all know that already … … that's why we need a good film every now and then to remind us 🙂

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Guardian Angels

Do you believe in them?  My faith was reaffirmed on Friday. 

There I was driving on the CTE (on the way to the airport for the photo shoot of our Locations Library), slowly getting onto the PIE with more traffic coming in from Serangoon Road and even more traffic filtering towards the Kallang/Sims Drive exit.  Just generally messy but nothing I couldn't inch my way through as I widdle-waddled towards the centre lane and started to pick up speed.

My thoughts started going on its own, "What a nice day, we should really do all the outdoors shots before moving indoors after lunch when the light goes yucky."

Just as the thought finished, I saw in front of me … about a car length away, a motorcyclist lose control of his bike, fell off and tumbled twice.  Without a thought, my foot hits the accerlerator, quick check of the blind spot and swing the car into the right most lane.  I heard a blaring horn and I just literally pushed the pedal to the ground and see in my rearview mirror a car rushing close towards me … and in the corner of my eye, the guy sitting on the expressway.

I wouldn't want to think about what would have happened, if I had stayed on course and tried to stop the car.

Wish I could take credit for thinking fast but in all honesty, there was no thought process … it was like having something take over my body and move itself … so back to guardian angels, whatever you call them … God, Buddha, our Heavenly Forefathers … someone was looking out for me and the motorcyclist 🙂

And you know what, I was going to take the SLE/TPE route but based on my sister's advice who works way out at Expo, the PIE is faster … wonder how my day would have turned out if I went by the SLE/TPE … my Sliding Doors moment.

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