Oscar Poker Blues

Today’s Oscar Poker podcast touched on the somewhat surprising success of The Grey, the underwhelming response to Haywire (which I find deeply depressing) and the blah-blah-blah-blah Oscar season as things now stand. It was a threesome today — myself, Awards Daily‘s Sasha Stone and Boxoffice.com‘s Phil Contrino. Here’s a stand-alone mp3 link.

  • Rashad

    Have you seen The Grey?

  • actionman

    The Grey is a masterpiece but the mouth-breathers are gonna hate it.

    Loved Haywire but that was more of a style piece, a genre riff.

    Both films elicited a hostile response in their final moments from more than a few patrons at my screenings. Fucking pathetic. A country of stooges.

  • guany

    Sasha totally contradicted herself, re: the DGA being more ballsy than the Academy.

    I love how Jeff asked her for some specific examples, and she thinks of two that happened in the modern era (Ang Lee ’00 and Spiellberg ’85), and then mentions Beatty only because Chariots of Fire won BP… although that was not only a surprise BP winner but Beatty himself ended up winning the Oscar anyways.

    And why does she even bother mentioning the DGA wins of Jonathan Demme and Clint Eastwood, when both of them as well as their films won Best Picture and Director at the Oscars?? What?

    Yeah, I agree that The Artist is a weak film and that it doesn’t deserve half of the praise and accolades it has received, nor the Best Picture Oscar, but please stop talking out of your ass.

    I don’t see how the DGA used to have balls and how they’re now sheep, when the fact of the matter is that ONLY SIX DGA winners have NOT gone on to win the Oscar. Yeah, they used to be sooo original.

    I love Sasha and her site, but she needs to do the research.

  • wildphantom

    Jeff you are right on the money with Haywire and I 100% agree with everything you’ve said in relation to it. It was thrilling, precisely because it was based in some sort of reality that you could believe in. Technically well made like Soderbergh always is.

    The handcuffs in the cop car argument Sasha came up with spoke volumes. You can’t have a conversation with anyone thinking along those lines. They wanted something it wasn’t.

    For the entire movie she barely escapes the situations she gets into anyway! The fights are brutal. The Fassbender showdown she just about won. Sasha cynically asks why Fassbender didn’t just shoot her there and then rather than this long escapade…..

    If she’d paid attention she would have realised half of his mission was to set Carano up; once he’d done that he could then take her out. By this point she knew what was going to go down. I saw nothing stupid about the way any of that played out.

    Soderbergh took a genre and kind of subverted it in his own style. He directs thrilling action unlike anything we’ve seen in quite some time and the whole thing works just fine and is really well put together. I had zero issues with Carano’s acting. It wasn’t that bad at all, and the rest of the cast were solid across the board.

    You needed someone credible to discuss the action genre in there with you. I like Sasha alot, but anybody that cites Taken as a great movie and then disses on Haywire – I don’t know. I was taken aback. Haywire received pretty high marks across the board critically, yet listening to the podcast you’d think you were on your own?

    As for it’s performance at the box office…people look at the poster and don’t know who Carano is. Simple as that. They look at the Contraband poster that same weekend and safe ol Marky Mark is in it – sold.

    Haywire will live long beyond its mediocre showing theatrically.

  • wildphantom

    As for The Grey…


    I saw the movie Friday and loved the ending. I got up and could hear audiences hating on the way it ended.

    “the worst ending ever” said one.

    What were they expecting? Him to take out the entire pack of wolves in their den when he’s on his last legs as it is, with a few mini-bar broken bottles taped to his knuckles?

    What movie had they been watching?

    Anyway, Jeff… I’ve heard there’s a post-credits scene that suggests neeson is still alive and a wolf dead beside him? Haven’t had this confirmed and hope thats not the case as its undermines the whole set up of the movie with him dealing with his faith and accepting his fate.

  • FlashDust

    You nailed it, Guany.

    Sasha should be ashamed of some the nonsense she spews.

  • Markj74

    Sasha does seem to have taken a bit of a weird turn recently, thinking The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is some kind of cinematic masterpiece and then dissing Haywire. Strange days. Personally I think The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is Fincher’s least work to date. The source material was beneath him.

  • actionman

    wildphantom — the ending does indeed show SOMETHING still alive, but that SOMETHING is a little ambiguous…the final shot post-credits does nothing to undermine the film. MASTERPIECE.

  • Manitoba

    Sasha was so right when she feared the SAG Awards could just add to the feeling of depression about the Oscars. The chances for any great surprises continue to dwindle down.

  • slashmc

    Whoa! HUGE SPOILERS for THE GREY in the podcast. Dammit! A disclaimer would have been nice to have read to avoid trying to frantically hit the pause or mute buttons.

    Also your iTunes listing calls it THE GRAY.

  • Cerulean

    @wildphantom: you said it perfectly regarding the Haywire plot and scenes. Sasha Stone just doesn’t know what she is talking about. The fact that she thinks Lisbeth Salander would be more realistic in the real world than Gina Carano, a REAL MMA star who beats down her competition time and time again is all you need NOT to take any of her arguments seriously. Haywire had the most realistic fighting scenes I have ever seen in a movie. Even though they are actors Michael Fassbender and Channing Tatum are not wimps in any book, Gina Carano said she almost blacked out during the fight scene with Fassbender when he put her head into a wall and that Tatum’s punches were really fully packed with power. Those were tough fights on screen as it would be in real life. Sasha Stone just has a hard on for the fictional Lisbeth Salander and David Fincher. She feels the need to put down any kick ass female actor who threatens the kick-ass status of her Lisbeth Salander/Rooney Mara myth. That’s pretty pathetic and again Jeff just allows her to brow beat him with submission with her nonsensical B.S. Man up Jeff and stand your ground, you were actually in the right.

  • BoulderKid

    What’s with The Grey massive spoiler. The movie came out three days ago, can you at least throw in a spoiler or something, Sasha and Jeff. I get that you’re catering to an industry crowd who sees a lot of stuff early, but you gotta give people a solid week or so to see something before giving the farm away.

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