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I received an envelope in the mail recently featuring the best misspelling of my name yet – Debraha. As in Deborahahahahaha (spoken in the Count’s voice from Sesame Street). Now check out the face staring back from my breakfast plate this weekend. Doesn’t look much like the Count, but he does look ready to let some evil cacklery abound- good thing I ate him. At least he died laughing. ♦

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And the OSCAR Goes to …

CRASH needs to win the Oscar for best picture, hands down. Sunday is Oscar night. YAY! Many love awards shows, many find them a snore. Me, love! A night dedicated to the best Hollywood has to offer (usually, that is, and yes, with some debate) in fun, entertaining, and hopefully, thought-provoking movies. Stories that need to be told and are a pleasure to view. Here are just a few thoughts that come to mind about the whole affair …

So, though Joaquin Phoenix is a personal favorite, le sigh, let alone, Mr. Cash, it would be great to see Terence Howard win for Best Actor in Hustle & Flow. Especially when that performance is juxtaposed alongside his performance in Crash. Night and day! Philip Seymour Hoffman, too, did a wonderful job of embodying Capote with his baby voice and minimal mannerisms and particular walk and stance.

Weak in character, he is, devious little man.

ASIDE: It’s rumored that Capote actually wrote To Kill A Mockingbird, his good friend Harper Lee’s famed story, which is among my favorites. Not sure how I feel about that … guess I’m just glad it was written! The thought that Atticus Finch and Holly Golightly were birthed from the same mind, two most glorious characters, is a lovely thought. Odd, too, since in the film Capote, Truman wasn’t portrayed as very sympathetic, a trait I’d think would be key in creating the integrity and stand-upness found in the lawyer Atticus Finch and the fragility and optimism in Ms. Golightly. Instead, he was rather self-serving, all about, me, me, me, in fact, with his canoodling of a murderous and troubled man. He wins the man’s trust in order to coax the details of the brutal murder from him with declarations of wishing to show the public the remaining humanity in the man and his partner in crime via his novel. Only, instead, he writes a book entitled In Cold Blood which says it all. Yeah, and then keeps it from the man, whom he’s fallen in love with to further entangle things, burdened with the fact that he must not release the much anticipated book until the man is killed via capital punishment, or else be found out. Weak in character, he is, devious little man. Whew! That was quite the aside … so, back to it:

As for Heath Ledger, true, he did a fine job in Brokeback Mountain, but not worthy of an Oscar. I could barely understand the man throughout the entire film. Mumble, mumble … marbles in his mouth! Even so, I would have thought he should still be in the running UNTIL just watching The Order. Yeah, it was the same acting job! Just insert a priest, or two, and a crazy, painting girl for Jake, and voila! Same turmoil and pain displayed on screen.

Syriana, George Clooney should not be winning in the supporting actor category. Please, noooooo! He did nothing out of character or especially note-worthy to my recollection. This film, I took a nap in. This, coming from a girl who worked 4 years in a movie theatre, spending many, many nights watching new films into the wee hours of the morning, checking for correct splicing and soundtrack match-ups. Snooozzzzze. Yeah, the last time I fell asleep in a film, it was Judge Dredd, for two minutes. And, I liked that film even. For what it was. At 3 o’clock in the morning.

Matt Dillon’s character in Crash was written very well, multi-faceted, many levels incorporated, and he pulled it off wonderfully. I loathed him, pitied him, identified with him, and learned from him as the movie progressed. William Hurt is an interesting pick for a nominee. He definitely had a different, hard edge to him in History of Violence. But, when I saw that movie, I along with the audience basically laughed when he came on screen. Not because he was bad, but a little absurd in his portrayal really. Ahhh, Mr. Giamatti needs to be nominated for the BIG ONE, an actual Best Actor, none of this Supporting schtuff, and then he needs to win. He’s perfectly wooonderful!

It set a slow, deliberate pace with it’s sweeping cinematography and forlorn, drawling soundtrack.

I don’t have much to say either way for any of the female nominees this year … there were some solid roles, strong performances, nothing that makes me want to take it and run with it, though. Next year, more to say, maybe.

I guess, back to Crash as Best Picture. NOT BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN. Please, not. Capote, I was definitely enthralled, captivated, anxiously waiting to see what was to happen next. Not even sure what caused the film to have that affect on me, but it did all the same, so I wouldn’t put up too much of a fuss if it ended up taking the Oscar. But, Brokeback Mountain, though a good film, simply shouldn’t win. I liked the film. It set a slow, deliberate pace with its sweeping cinematography and forlorn, drawling soundtrack. It was a tasteful telling of a topic of controversy. It made me cry. Still, it was a good movie at best. Not excellent. Or worthy of the little golden guy!

Crash should win!!! It’s an original screenplay. Fantabulous! Although I believe every film nominated in the Best Picture category this year gives an excellent lesson to be learned, I’d say that Crash embodies all those lessons. The prejudices and judgments, the coldness, and hardness of heart, all of that evil stuff we humans unleash on each other that needs to go out the second story window, was captured in this movie. There were amazingly intense moments, and situations where I saw myself, none too proudly, at times in the past. Best of all, and what helps to set it apart from the rest, is that amongst all the evil and wrong doing, it still offers up moments of hope. Something we all need. It shows that the heart can be softened, eyes can be opened, minds can be enlightened. It does this with honesty, not by tidily wrapping up the conclusion of the film with a great, big, happy ending, no. Instead it leaves us with the truth, that humans will go on being human, judgments and prejudices will continue. And, we’ll deal with it. ♦

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