Sunday, February 28, 2010

A White Prophet.

It was a wonderful night for two of the year's best films which continued collecting the awards they began garnering in Cannes almost a year ago.

Michael Haneke's "The White Ribbon" deservedly won the prestigious ASC award for motion picture cinematography beating fellow Oscar nominees "Avatar", Inglourious Basterds" and "The Hurt Locker".
This could bode well for Austrian DP Christian Berger come Oscar day if it weren't for the fact that the Academy rarely chooses the best in the bunch.
Oscar and ASC have matched four times in the past decade and usually the guild has chosen the worthiest nominee (the year Emmanuel Lubezki won for "Children of Men" being the clearest example).
They have also shown their love for black and white in the past giving their top award to Roger Deakins for "The Man Who Wasn't There".
Also, contrary to what "The Hollywood Reporter" is saying this isn't the first time that a foreign language film takes the top award. Just five years ago Bruno Delbonnel won for his exquisite sepia work in "A Very Long Engagement". It also wouldn't mean the ASC has suddenly gone foreign, only one out of the five last winners was American.

Across the Atlantic, Jacques Audiard's brilliant "A Prophet" won nine Cesar awards including Best Film, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (Niels Arestrup) and in a surprising event both Best Actor and Breakthrough Actor for the amazing Tahar Rahim.
Isabelle Adjani won Best Actress and in one of those strange things only the French understand "Gran Torino" beat "Milk", "Slumdog Millionaire" and "The White Ribbon" to take home Best Foreign Language Film.

Both movies are the the top contenders to win the foreign film Oscar in a week and honestly both are absolutely deserving of all the praise they've gotten.


Danny King said...

Can't wait to see A Prophet. I was a little disappointed with The White Ribbon, but I want to let it sit for a while and then give it another watch before finalizing my thoughts.

There's something about Haneke's stories that really, really turns me off. I don't question that they are thoroughly engrossing throughout, but his endings leave me very unsatisfied.

Jose said...

His endings are the worst and I mean that in a total "I love them" way.
His ambiguity and sense of justice is brilliant, everybody's always frustrated but nobody leaves a Haneke movie without the urgent need of intellectual debate.