While Noel was out playing poker with the boys last night, I caught up with a couple of 2007 movies, in preparation for Oscar night tomorrow. Eastern Promises was too melodramatic by half in its plotting -- the dead Russian girl narrating her own diary was a particularly eye-rolling touch -- but there's no doubt that Viggo Mortenson was a powerful presence onscreen, and Naomi Watts really gained gravitas as the story went on. Not my cup of tea, really, but I see the quality there.
By contrast, Before The Devil Knows You're Dead is so much my cup of tea, it could have been brewed from my DNA. An intense but easy focus on particulars and specifics, ordinary people acting under stress like ordinary people might act, a structure that deepens particular moments by backtracking and putting them in a richer contest -- right in my sweet spot.
Noel will be liveblogging the Oscars here tomorrow. I still haven't filled out my ballot, and since I pay no attention to awards handicapping and conventional wisdom, I'm probably going to commit some real howlers. As long as my number one movie of the year, Ratatouille, wins Best Animated Feature, I'll be happy. That's a lock, right?