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Tag: Whiplash

Whiplash Review (2014)

Intense and epic!

Damien Chazelle has landed a knockout blow in extremity with his epic jazz project. Whiplash is a story of a young drummer with a potential to stand amongst the greats and an abusive instructor who seeks perfection at every note to help his students achieve the greatness.

The casting couldn’t have been more perfect. Both Teller and Simmons fit the portrait of their characters superbly. Simmons is an exceptional actor. He dons the abusive and mean demeanour quite naturally and carries it throughout the flick, reeking of perversion, cruelty and foul-mouthed barbarism. Going inhumane to create a musical virtuoso was something Simmons was trying to achieve. Teller, an equally great actor leaves no stone unturned to play the obsessive drummer, who fumes with confidence and rage when tipped over the breaking point. You see him burn in wrath and conviction when he is trying to prove himself.

Direction is enthralling. The way camera moves quickly capturing every gesture of the instructor and the protagonist and then landing on every instrument in the orchestra was a delight to watch. Beats in the background subtly wrapping up New York buildings show exceptional direction skills of Chazelle. Editing was outstanding. There wasn’t a moment of ennui in the entire movie.


There are excellent dramatic scenes in the movie that simply goes on to show how Teller has significantly evolved in the acting department. Watch out for the bit when he gets rammed by a truck and still goes on to play. Also when he plays so fiercely that he bleeds and jabs the drum in resentment.

The climax of the movie would literally stop your breath. My hands were moving along with Andrew’s sticks as if I was drumming it. One of the best drums you would ever listen to.

Wasn’t a big jazz fan. This movie has transformed the way I looked at it. Highly recommended quality cinema ladies and gentlemen!

The Unpredictable Academy: Snubs and Wins (2015)

Every year the Academy slips in a frowned spurn at a movie that is on everybody’s mind. This time ‘Boyhood’ became the bait. The coming-of-age tale that spread brilliantly over the span of 12 years, was a sure shot per se. But alas! the Oscars have a reputation in doing the unthinkable. ‘Birdman’ beat Linklater’s panache not only in Best Picture and Original Screenplay categories but also in Best Direction. The latter managed to hold its ground thanks to Patricia Arquette’s Supporting Actress win.

Not long ago when the Academy had pressed its Oscar sheet, the snubbing of great movies like ‘Foxcatcher’, ‘Big Eyes’, ‘The Lego Movie’ and great actors like Amy Adams, Jennifer Aniston, David Oyelowo, Helen Mirren, Bill Murray, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ralph Fiennes and Christoph Waltz, had caught a lot of moss. Putting out Selma flame was a big rebuff this year since people claimed it to be a distinction on Academy’s part, not to mention the fact that a majority of voting members in the Oscar team are white.

Apart from the biggest surprise of the night, some more were strewn all along the event. Academy chose to ignore the ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ franchise once again giving precedence to ‘Big Hero 6’ in the animation department. Best Editing went to ‘Whiplash’ which again was a pie in the face for ‘Boyhood’. ‘American Sniper’ losing to ‘Whiplash’ in Sound Editing was another one. ‘Interstellar’ managed only one out of its five nominations. Surprise was Zimmer’s stunning score bowing down to Desplatic rhythm. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes overlooked in the Visual Effects department came as a big blow. However, it was a close call since Interstellar’s visuals were quite brilliant as well. It was great to see Glory glorified and Feast winning the Best Short Film Animated category. Winston just had to win 😉

Here is a short summary of what happened:

  • The Imitation Game (had 8 nominations, bagged 1)
  • Boyhood (had 6, bagged 1)
  • American Sniper (had 6, managed 1)
  • Birdman (had 9, got 4)
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel (had 9, got 4)
  • Whiplash (had 5, got 3)
  • Interstellar (had 5, got 1)
  • Foxcatcher (had 5, received none)

‘Foxcatcher’ was overlooked big time. Given the amount of work Bennett Miller had put in to create the beauty, he needed a little Academy respect and attention. Steve Carell’s transformational looks as John du Pont at least deserved a Makeup and Hairstyling accolade.

Rumours have continuously surrounded the Academy owing to its big decisions which seem pretty biased sometimes. The one that exemplifies the obvious perfectly – Incessant snubbing of Leonardo DiCaprio despite outstanding performances throughout his life. Academy even failed to recognize exceptional knacks of Wes Anderson and Richard Linklater last night. Both are yet to bag an Oscar, and that is just sad.

I picture Academy as one old crude witch, who just loves to see the world burn. If you have a favorite the Academy would snub it and shout “In your face!” in your face. Mainstream movies never even make it to the list.

Whatever the hammer says hardly bothers us though. We know for sure, nothing is really lost. The shattered are still celebrated. We still have incredible movies to watch thanks to sensational efforts put in by excellent directors, actors and the remaining crew.

If you didn’t make it, we don’t really care. Academy is just a bunch of people with their scathing point of view. If you consider all of us – people who watch you from every corner of the world, who care about every single thought you conceived to carve something beautiful, who praise your extraordinary efforts to create what we can only imagine, those who really love your work, who really encourage you do the exceptional, the real movie buffs, for us, you are still our winners! You will never lose! Let us raise one to that!