HOLLYWOOD—I love the Fall. There I said it, but why you ask? Its because it’s the time of year, where some of the best movies are released into the multiplex, hence the awakening of awards season, particularly Oscar buzz. There are quite a few dramas that will be eyeing the Golden Guy come March 2013.
“Blue Jasmine,” “Fruitvale Station” and “The Butler” have already gotten major buzz, but rarely do pictures released far beyond what industry insiders call ‘Oscar season’ reel in nominations. This isn’t to say it hasn’t happened, but this year the competition will be quite fierce.
For starters, the thriller “Prisoners” arrives on September 20, which chronicles the tale of two families searching for their daughters who have been kidnapped. Early buzz is raving for Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal for their performances and it doesn’t hurt to have a bevy of Oscar nominees in Terrence Howard and Viola Davis to assist.
Two of the most hyped pictures of the year arrive in October. First up is the sci-fi thriller “Gravity” starring Oscar-winners George Clooney and Sandra Bullock; the picture is directed by Alfonso Cuaron and the reviews and teasers have been epic. Bullock is already considered a top contender as Best Actress for her portrayal of an astronaut lost in space.
The other front-runner is Steve McQueen’s harrowing tale of slavery in “12 Years A Slave,” starring Brad Pitt, Michael Fassbender and Chiwetel Eljiofor. The film tells the true story of Solomon Northup, a free slave from the North who is kidnapped and sold into slavery. The brutal imagery and realism of the picture has left audience members stunned and speechless. It’s a must-see on my list this year.
Tom Hanks is likely to return to the awards arena with his stirring performances in “Captain Phillips” and “Saving Mr. Banks.” “Captain Phillips” tells the true story about a group of Americans that are captured and held hostage by Somali pirates. Hanks could become a double nominee for lead actor for his work in “Captain Phillips” and supporting actor for his work in “Saving Mr. Banks” this year.
We can’t mention awards season without talking about perennial favorite Martin Scorsese who has teamed with his muse Leonardo DiCaprio again for “The Wolf of Wall Street.” DiCaprio plays a Wall Street stockbroker at the prime of his life with money, drugs, women and power. From the looks of the trailer DiCaprio delivers another rousing performance. Could this finally be the role that nabs the actor that elusive statute? We’ll have to wait until November 15 to see what happens.
It wouldn’t be awards season without the mention of Meryl Streep. The three time Oscar-winner returns to the screen with a meaty role in the Tony-Pulitzer prize winning play “August: OsageCounty” hitting theaters just in time for Christmas. She plays the matriarch of a dysfunctional family and is already earning rave reviews as a lead actress contender for her work alongside Oscar-winner Julia Roberts who could also be a contender this awards season.
There are indeed a bevy of dramas that will be hitting theaters in the next three months, so for all the adults who have been eagerly waiting for the best of the best, that time of year has finally arrived!
By LaDale Anderson