The Descendents and Moneyball
I saw both of these movies this week. Both are virtual locks for Best Picture and Best Actor (George Clooney for The Descendents and Brad Pitt for Moneyball), so I thought I'd comment on them together.
The Descendents was a good movie and I liked it, but I didn't love it. It has gotten rave reviews and I can see why some people connected with it, but it just didn't completely connect with me. Clooney gives a good performance as a disconnected father who has to deal with his family and marriage after his wife is in an accident. But a lot of his reactions felt unrealistic to me, and there is one supporting character (his daughter's boyfriend) who grated on my nerves for most of the film. Also, some of the directing choices Alexander Payne made were a bit off. But overall, it was a good movie that a lot of people will love. I'd give it a "B" and predict a lot of award nominations this year.
Moneyball is another film that has gotten almost universally good reviews. I loved this movie. Were there a few things that didn't quite work? Sure, but that is the case with a lot of films. But for a movie that is basically about statistics, this one packs an emotional punch. I don't watch baseball and don't know much about the sport, but you don't need to know anything about the sport to enjoy the movie. Brad Pitt, Jonah Hill and Phillip Seymour Hoffman give great performances and the story, while familiar in many ways, just works. I'd give this one an A- and, again, I predict a lot of award nominations.
Both movies are well worth a watch!