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Filmmakers Confronting Gender Equalities, Differences in Time for Valentine's Day and Oscar Night
Directed by Kathryn Bigelow , the only woman In history to win a Best Directing Oscar in 2008 for the war drama, “Hurt Locker” (which won six Oscars, including Best Picture), “Zero Dark Thirty” received a best picture nomination, but Ms. Bigelow was not nominated for directing.
Aside from continual rumblings concerning filmmaker access to formerly classified documents, the production set off a mini-war regarding its torture scenes. Although the United States has officially denied the use of torture , such as by water boarding, after the 9/11 attacks, the lead investigator and other CIA operatives regard it in the production as routine.
In fact, Maya, the strong female lead played by Jessica (“The Help”, “Mama”) Chastain proves herself capable of playing with the not-by-the-book boys when she must observe, then, interrogate a tortured prisoner. Her lesson is well learned, as she outlasts all her male superiors when the terrorist’s location has finally been pegged.
Ironically, the Hollywood underdog “Silver Linings Playbook” has become a true Hollywood award underdog. The must see film explores modern romance from the perspective of two flawed individuals that pair as a stronger, but still flawed , couple.
Nominated for eight Oscars, including Best Direction and Best Picture, Bradley Cooper (as Pat) and Jennifer Lawrence (Tiffany) infuse the value of interventions along the bumpy pathway of loss. Unable to start new lives on their own, Pat still whines for his ex whom he caught in the shower with a history teacher. Following eight months of institutionalization for his obsession, he meets Tiffany while jogging. She’s a new widow and has tarnished her rep by sleeping with too many potential replacements.
Encapsulated with the hurdles faced by those suffering emotional challenges (think “Ordinary People” or “Rain Man”) , both Cooper an Ms. Lawrence deserve strong consideration for the Best Actor and Best Actress categories.
That’s a second gender battlefield. The term “actress” has fallen out of political correctness. In recognition, the Screen Actors Guild had nominations for best performance by a “male actor” and “female actor.” Maybe, some of the other awards shows need to catch up with the realities expressed by the S.A.G.
Ms. Lawrence, though, may win an Oscar, but Cooper will have to best Abe Lincoln himself i.e. Daniel Day Lewis, who took the S.A.G. “male actor” award.
Looking at the cinema release schedule as Valentine’s Day nears, gender differences highlight.
“Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters” pairs Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton as the “Buffy Vampire Slayer” inspired assassins. Chalk up a strong female role for Arterton , who previously appeared in “Quantum of Solace” and “Clash of the Titans.”
On Valentine’s Day weekend, “Beautiful Creatures,” hurls into the supernatural as Ethan and Lena both have dark pasts with which they must overcome before Cupid’s arrow can pierce their hearts. Upon her 16th birthday, she must make a tormenting decision about her incredible power --- whether to use it for good or swing to the dark side.
“Safe Haven” comes from a Nicholas (“Dear John,” “The Notebook”) Sparks novel. The past haunts a mysterious woman gauging acceptance in a small North Carolina town. Once she falls for good-guy Alex (a widowed store owner and his two kids) pressures mount forcing her to confront t past emotional perils in order to potentially find a new love.
Two additional gender equality flicks coming around V-Day (although these will be in select markets) are “Playroom” in which Meagan discovers the facade of “perfect” 1970’s suburbia living and “Murder 3,” where a rising fashion photographer purchases a lovely old world house that proves to have secrets.
In the event you hate love stories, you can always s select the latest Bruce Willis action event, “A Good Day to Die Hard,” a female astronaut who must “Escape from Planet Earth,” or “Side Effects,” set in the world of pharmacology .//