Image result for Golden Globes 2017The month of January is a big month for Hollywood with three award shows taking place throughout the month. The Golden Globes, People’s Choice, and Screen Actors Guild Awards (SAG) are all in the month of January and may be early signs for the Oscar favorites in February. Many of these movies and actors have garnered praise from critics and others had been massive box office successes. The first award show of the month was the Golden Globes. This has come and gone already, and the one thing that stuck out from this show, aside from Meryl Streep’s speech, was La La Land sweeping each category it was nominated for.

The most recent award show was the People’s Choice Awards. This award show is exactly what its name implies. The award show had over 265 million votes for the nominees. This may not have had the newsworthiness of the Globes but it was still a historic night. At the People’s Choice, Ellen DeGeneres set a record for most decorated People’s Choice winner. She brought home three awards last night, Favorite Animated Movie Voice, Favorite Daytime TV Host, and Favorite Comedic Collaboration, which brought her total to 20. Other actors who won big were Kevin Hart, Dwayne Johnson, and Blake Lively. Johnny Depp received the Favorite Movie Icon award against competition from the likes of Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise, Denzel Washington, and Samuel L. Jackson.  Later this month is the final award show of January, the SAG Awards.

If you do not know, the SAG Awards are January 29th. It will feature many of the nominees from the past two award shows. A few of the people nominated are Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, and Jeff Bridges along with so many other talented actors and actresses. Movies that are up for awards are Moonlight, Manchester by Sea, and Captain Fantastic along with others. Shortly after the SAG are the much-anticipated Oscars. Who do you think bags one this year, let us know in the comments!Image result for people's choice awards 2017

By now, I’m sure all of you have heard of or seen Leonardo DiCaprio and Alejandro González Iñárritu’s new film, THE REVENANT. But if you haven’t, I’m here to tell you why you should.

First of all, Leo is winning all of the awards for this performance. He’s already snagged the Golden Globe for best actor in a leading role and more recently, the Screen Actors Guild award. Iñárritu also won the Golden Globe for best director. And let’s not forget that this is our golden boy’s year to win the coveted Oscar, a first for Leo. In fact, The Revenant has been nominated for 12 Oscars in total this year, including Best Picture. Now I know the Oscars and other award ceremonies aren’t the be-all and end-all of movie greatness, I’m just explaining that you’re the only person that hasn’t seen this amazing film (presumably).

Secondly, this is the most beautiful movie I’ve seen in several years. Every image is breathtaking, from the incredible Canadian and Argentinian landscapes to the way the camera glides through a scene as if operated by a ghost. Cinematographer, Emmanuel Lubezki rarely disappoints, and I believe this may be his best work yet. An amazing thing about this film is that it was shot almost entirely void of artificial light. Because of this limitation, they were only capable of shooting for a handful of hours every day, causing the schedule to inflate until they actually had the leave Canada because winter was on its way out the door. What they captured, however, is a film that allows you to immerse yourself in the experience and truly feel like you’re struggling with the characters through a wide-angle lens. I cannot stress this enough: see this movie in a theater. Now.

Thirdly, it’s a great story. The true tale of Hugh Glass is endlessly fascinating and inspiring, but the filmmakers here ramped it up with a handful of creative flourishes to make it truly great and unique. Tom Hardy plays the purely evil antagonist, John Fitzgerald, so well that you will hate him with every inch of your being by the end of the film. Hugh Glass’s struggles are so devastating and human that you want his success just as much as he does. All of the supporting characters are well developed and actually add something to the story. Other than that, it’s a simple story about survival, revenge, and the human spirit. It transcends what most of mainstream Hollywood movies stand for and envelopes the audience in something real, allowing them to make meaning for themselves.

If my three main points still aren’t convincing you, I’m not sure what will. It’s been such a long time since I’ve actually cared about the Oscars. I want the film, Iñárritu, and Leo to win, simply because they deserve it. The artistry in this film is unmatched. It’s a little long and slow at points, but I guarantee it will leave you exhausted and satisfied at the end. Other than that, I’m not sure I can think of any down sides. Perhaps the symbolism is a little ham-fisted here or there, but everything has meaning which is really nice to see in such a big movie. Oh! And it should be noted that this movie is violent. It’s almost difficult to take in, because everything feels so realistic. We’re not talking Quentin Tarantino violence; we’re talking real-life Cowboys and Indians violence. Also, there’s this gross scene with a dead horse… And a gross scene with a dead bison… It’s a really good movie, I promise!


4 ½ out of 5 Stars


THE REVENANT – Dir. Alejandro González Iñárritu

Run Time: 2 hours 36 minutes

Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Domnhall Gleeson, Will Poulter

ROOM Movie Review, based off of the National Best-selling novel from Emma Donaghue, is a heart-wrenching new film about a young boy and his mother finally escaping from the hands of their captor, allowing the boy to discover the outside world for the first time. Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay as ‘Ma’ and ‘Jack’ respectively, each give performances of a lifetime (which is kind of saying a lot, given both of their incredibly young ages) in director Lenny Abrahamson’s first film after the independent smash, FRANK. Donaghue returns to pen the screenplay from her own novel, giving the film a very complete and fresh feel unlike many book adaptations we’ve become accustomed to. So, as you can see, Team Room is fairly stacked in regards to young talent.

The first thing I need to reiterate is how amazing Brie Larson and Jacob Tremblay are in this film. Larson has already won the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Leading Role and is a strong contender for the coveted Best Actress Oscar this year. Both of which are very well deserved. She managed to portray a vulnerable, yet strong mother just trying to take care of her son in the worst possible conditions. Jacob gave the best performance from someone under the age of fifteen since Sean Astin in THE GOONIES. Actually he was far better than Sean Astin has ever been (that was harsh, I’m sorry). It’s rare to find a young actor knock such a difficult role out of the park, but some amount of credit has to be given to both Abrahamson’s direction as well as Larson’s counter performance. Regardless, I’ve never seen such wonder and enthusiasm in a performance, especially from a nine year old playing a five year old.

The emotional core of Room comes from Ma’s love and protection of Jack. It’s apparent from the first scene that he’s the only ray of light in her horrific life and that she’s willing to do anything to keep him happy. Unfortunately that means keeping him unaware of the reality beyond “Room”, leaving him unable to be hopeful for their futures. This idea is the main focus of the first act of the film. What is outside? Who can go there? What will happen when we leave Room? What does happen is that Jack learns about everything that was kept hidden from him for his first five years of existence. Some things are amazing and even magical, while others are cruel, scary, and make him miss his old home.

As you can expect, Room plays with your emotions a little bit. Or a lot. I’m not going to say that I left the theater with red, swollen eyes, but I definitely wasn’t too chipper about the experience. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a wonderful story that is beautifully directed and expertly acted, but it’s draining. Throughout the 2 hour run time, you’ll feel severe anxiety, crippling sadness, elated joy, and a smidge of anger. So basically it’s like watching INSIDE OUT!

All in all, Room deserves every award it has won or been nominated for. I’m still working my way through all of the Oscar nominated films this year, but I’ll honestly be surprised if Brie doesn’t snag the Best Actress statue. She and Tremblay had contagious chemistry together that I’ve been thinking about all weekend. Room may not be the best date movie, but if you get the chance to see it in a theater, I highly recommend the experience. After all, who doesn’t enjoy crying with a room full of strangers?

4 out of 5 Stars

ROOM – Dir. Lenny Abrahamson

Run Time: 118 minutes

Starring: Brie Larson, Jacob Tremblay, Joan Allen, William H. Macy