Sunday, March 4, 2018

Last Minute Best Picture Reviews/Snack Ideas

Hello there fellow wannabe movie buffs!  In the last 4 days, I binged through all 9 Best Picture Nominees.  I also realized that I didn't have anything to bring to the Oscar party that I'm going to tonight.  It's definitely too late to write a listicle about Oscar party snacks, but if Tom Hanks could go through 4,000 pages of the pentagon papers in 7 hours, I figure I can write a thing suggesting that people bring hard boiled eggs to their Oscar party in honor of The Shape of Water.

The Shape of Water:

I went into this film thinking it was going to be weird.  Everyone has been talking about the sex scene between the female lead and the creature.  Maybe I'm just well adjusted and jaded, but I thought this movie was a fun popcorn flick.  Basically it's your typical clash between a government who wants to kill a weird unique creature and a group of people who want to save it.  Admittedly, there is some female masturbation and a conversation where the mute female lead has to explain, using sign language, how the creature's penis works.  Anyway, definitely a solid nominee.  A great last minute snack for this would be hard boiled eggs, since that's what the creature eats, maybe add some table salt to get it up to 5% salinity.

Lady Bird:

I said on Facebook that this movie would have been my favorite movie of 2008.  It's set in 2002 and is sort of a coming age tale of a high school senior and her borderline abusive relationship with her mother.  I had a few nitpicks about what was or wasn't true of 2002, and I wish they'd handled the mother's redemption a little better, but it was fun seeing a movie that took place during my formative years.  An early scene in the film depicts Lady Bird and her friend snacking on communion wafers, so grab some oyster crackers and label them communion wafers and you're golden.

Phantom Thread:

This film about dressmaker Reynolds Woodcock's relationship with his model Alma starts off as just another piece of Oscar bait.  The costumes and look of the movie are both excellent if generic for a film of its type.  Then, about two thirds of the way through, Alma puts poison mushrooms in Mr. Woodcock's tea.  This leads to her nursing him back to health and them getting married.  Then things really start to get interesting.  Any dish with mushrooms will do the trick here.  Just make sure they're fried in butter!


A bunch of white guys with brown hair are trying to get off of a beach in this movie by Christopher Nolan.  It was not for me.  Jam an toast are served at one point.  Also tea, since they're British I guess.

Darkest Hour:

If Phantom Thread is generic Oscar bait, this film feels like one of those films that had Oscar buzz, but was not nominated for anything.  It's a fine period piece where Gary Oldman has a ton of prosthetics to make him look like Winston Churchill.  Obviously a vehicle to get him a Best Actor in a Leading Role nomination, he does a pretty good job, but he's not good enough to make up for how bland the rest of the film is.  I'm at a loss for snacks based on this movie.  Maybe pretzel rods made to look like cigars?

Call Me By Your Name:

This sweet story of a 17 year old boy learning about sexuality with a 24 year old grad student on the Italian country side should have been right up my alley.  I love slice of life films with independent or foreign sensibilities.  Unfortunately, this film was so understated that several scenes that should have been highly emotional left me cold.  It's also too long.  There are a number of extraneous scenes and characters that kill any momentum the story had.  Were it about 30 minutes shorter, it could have been an excellent, tight film.  Apricots would make a great snack here.  If you want to be gross, cut a hole in the middle and put a little salt on them.  I'm not going to explain why.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri:

I could have sworn this was a Coen brothers film, but it's actually not.  Writer/Director Martin McDonagh tells a story of a small town full of irredeemable people dealing with a truly terrible act.  A teenage girl is "raped while dying," and the police cannot find the killer.  The girl's mother rents three billboards, calling out the Sheriff for not finding the guilty party.  This sounds like it would be a dark, depressing film, but it manages to go over the top and find comedy without making light of the tragedy.  James, played by Peter Dinklage, talks about ordering cheesy pasta in one scene, and Mildred throws rice crispies at her son in another.  "James's Cheesy Pasta" or "Mildred's Rice Crispy Treats" would be good names for dishes.  I'll let you take it from there.

Get Out:

This horror film by Jordan Peele is about some weird stuff that goes on when an African American goes to meet his white girlfriend's parents.  It tackles things like micro-aggressions and subtle racism very well while being a legitimately scary film.  Aside from Three Billboards, this was my favorite picture on the list, and I'd be happy if it wins if only because it feels so different from any film nominate for Best Picture in years.  One of the creepiest scenes in the movie features someone eating dry fruit loops with a glass of milk, so unsettling.  Alternatively, you could get creative with vanilla cake covered in chocolate icing, because of [SPOILERS].

The Post:

This was a movie by Spielberg with Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep about a newspaper taking down Nixon.  It's the definition of Oscar-bait, but that's okay because it was executed really well.  I'm okay with watching one film a year like this.  It's definitely better, though similar to, films like Bridge of Spies and Spotlight.  Several scenes feature Tom Hanks's daughter selling lemonade.  What type of lemonade you ask?  "The kind with the lemons."

There you have it!  If you don't like any of these ideas for snacks, try "Big Sick Bread that Becomes Toast," or "Bladerunner 2049 Ramen."  Just don't wash anything down with one of "Mildred's Molotov Cocktails."

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