Most Annoying Performance
ANTHONY HOPKINS – The Silence of the Lambs
City Slickers – Billy Crystal, Jack Palance, Daniel Stern and Bruno Kirby
Best Ensemble Cast
Backdraft – Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, Robert De Niro, Donald Sutherland, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rebecca De Mornay, Scott Glenn, and J.T. Walsh
WTF did I just see?
Defending Your Life
Most overrated movie
The Silence of the Lambs
Best juvenile performance
Reese Witherspoon – The Man in the Moon
Notes from awards committee:
The 1992 major three Oscars were sweep by Silence of the Lambs. Sure it was watchable and an OK retread of horror movie themes we’ve all seen before, but the outburst of Hollywood love for SOTL was, well, astonishing to say the least. We picked five of the best movies of the year, and SOTL was not on the short list. Neither were the two stars, Hopkins and Foster, nominated for Best Actor performances.
The best motion picture of the year was Terminator 2: Judgment Day. Of course, the film was snubbed by the Academy. With the T-1000 cyborg, Director James Cameron raised the bar and arguably created the most formidable foe with the most sinister stare of the action, sci-fi cinema decade. The relentlessness of the T-1000 is never in doubt. The film is not all action and high tech razzle dazzle; important life themes about fate, fear, responsibility, and loyalty are explored in the film. This ambitious sequel ruled the Box Office.
Kevin Costner wins best actor award for his key role in JFK. He makes Orleans Parish DA Jim Garrison appear to be a competent legal prosecutor, when in real life; Garrison was a big of dufuss. Garrison’s murder/conspiracy case against Clay Shaw is really the heart of the movie and foundation of the conspiracy theory. Clay Shaw was unanimously acquitted by the jury after only thirty minutes of deliberation. Meryl Streep is awarded the Simpson for Best Actress for her role in Defending Your Life, a lighthearted fantasy-comedy by Albert Brooks. Streep wafts through the film like an angel and sweeps Brooks off his feet in Judgement City.
Fun Surprises -
Billy Bathgate - The story of NYC gangster "Dutch" Schultz is told through the eyes of his protégé, a clever, young lad named Billy Bathgate (well played by Loren Dean). This is a first rate 1930’s era movie with the sleek, black Packard limos, fedoras, pushcarts and shabby tenement buildings. This Depression Era gangster film has a touching poor boy meets rich girl story.
Black Robe- Black Robe refers to the Roman Catholic Jesuit priests who ventured into the untamed North American wilderness to convert the wild tribes of the New World. It is a very rare film that makes you feel like you are actually witnessing history (circa 1650). The fake, sentimental Hollywood versions of American history (think Dances with Wolves) are childish by comparison to this film.
Backdraft - An all-star ensemble cast and the most spectacular firefighting scenes ever captured on film are two reasons to see this movie. The soap opera plot is not worth going on about, but the heart of the movie is true to the men who battle the big blazes. Kurt Russell is effective as the lead fireman admired for his skill as a firefighter, but due to his abrasive, Type-A personality he clashes constantly with the people in his life.
JFK - The murder of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963 in Dallas was a turning point in American history. The entire nation was shocked. JFK is the single most impressive piece of conspiracy storytelling I have ever seen. One film critic wrote, “Everything incredible becomes credible and every new revelation helps to connect dots that have no business being together. It is wizardry, black magic, a practicing of the dark arts you can’t look away from.” Whether you are a film lover, historian, pop culture fan, or a hard-core conspiracy believer, this is a must see film by Oliver Stone.
The Doors - The movie features a great performance by Val Kilmer as the talented, self- destructive rock star Jim Morrison. It has been written that even the surviving Doors had trouble distinguishing Kilmer's vocals from Morrison's originals. The film is a psychedelic flashback to the later 1960s – the age of the Woodstock music festival, The Summer of Love and the West Coast drug rush. It was a time when Something was Always Happening Somewhere, as the youth of the America reached peak rebellion with the nightmare of the Vietnam War always threatening to spoil the party.
Defending Your Life - A gentle and playful fantasy-comedy that actually manages a thoughtful take on the after-life layered with some heavenly romance in Judgement City. During his orientation, Albert Brooks (writer, director and actor) meets another new arrival, Meryl Streep, and falls in love. – what guy wouldn't?
The Silence of the Lambs – here we go with another Hollywood psycho-killer. Yes, our cultural fascination with true crime is ghoulish. I propose a couple of reasons – 1) truth can be stranger than fiction, and 2) the camera can avoid confronting the ugly, gruesome facts of the crime and victims. This is an overrated movie about a cannibalistic lunatic. Not really bad, but nothing special either. I really don't understand what all the fuss is about. Movie critics put on rose colored glasses and sang in unison a horseshit hosanna.
The Prince of Tides – a boring package of psychobabble and, of course, the standard pair of would be lovers trapped in unhappy marriages. These psychotherapy tales are just too boring for me.
Bugsy - Warren Beatty was 54 when he made this movie and despite the hair dye, he's too old for this part. Bugsy Siegel was 31 when he went out West to chase his Las Vegas dream. Bugsy was a tough guy feared by his contemporaries; Beatty just doesn't radiate menace. He’s a Hollywood pretty boy.