Deadpool: Comedy, Action, Romance, and Gore

WARNING: This movie is not for the faint of heart. Now I’m all for horror movies, gore, and everything in between, but for some reason any time something is mutating it gives me the shivers. Maybe because I can imagine it happening to me and it makes my skin crawl. So if you’re like me, then be prepared to turn away a couple times during this movie.

Other than that, I loved Deadpool! It had a little bit of everything…dark humor, dysfunctional romance, unrealistic action, and disgusting brain matter.

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Ryan Reynolds, who plays Wade Wilson, is a former special forces operative who works as a mercenary. His life is forever changed when he agrees to an experiment during which he is tortured and transformed into Deadpool. Wade now has extraordinary healing powers that help him track down and kill the man who destroyed his life. Add in a little bit of twisted romance and comedy and you have a (non)classic superhero story.

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And, I gotta say, the hype about Ryan Reynold’s ass in that red suit was not exaggerated. Seriously, hot damn.

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A+

–Queen M

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5 Times Leo Should Have Been Nominated for an Oscar

 As we continue to celebrate Leo’s fifth Oscar nomination (and first win! Wooh!), let’s take a moment to appreciate some of his Academy-unrecognized masterpieces.  These five roles were easy contenders for performance of the year, but couldn’t even rangle a nod from the all-powerful Academy.  So, here you have it:  5 times our boy Leo should have (at least) received a nomination, but was left cheering from the sidelines.
J. Edgar Hoover
 While this is not necessarily my favorite Leo film, his acting was phenomenal from start to finish.  Leo plays the 50-year famed head of the F.B.I., while providing an intimate glimpse into the man.  This movie, itself, was wildly underwhelming, but Leo’s depiction was honest and effortless.  Leo was nominated for a Golden Globe for this part, but lacked any recognition from the Academy.
4) ) Django Unchained
Calvin Candie
Anyone who has seen Django Unchained can attest to the harrowing performance of Leo as Calvin Candie, ruthless slave-owner with torturous, yet charismatic tendencies.  With unrivaled commitment (he cut his hand and continued with the scene, smearing real blood on Kerry Washington’s face), Leo made me truly hate his character and forget who the man behind the maniac was.  The film was nominated for five Oscars, but despite his Golden Globe nomination, the Academy didn’t even acknowledge his flawless performance.
Jack Dawson
This one is, of course, a given.  As Jack Dawson, Leonardo DiCaprio made an entire generation breakdown in three and a half hours.  This movie, a blockbuster record-breaker, won the Academy Award for Best Picture, as well as taking home 10 additional awards.  Though he was nominated for a Golden Globe, Leo, himself, did not even receive a nod from the academy for his brilliant performance.
And, c’mon, look at those eyes.
Leo is beautiful
Billy
The Departed is one of the greatest films of all time.  This is not only my opinion:  It broke in at number 46 on IMDb’s Top 250 Movies of All Time.  Leo plays Billy, an undercover cop who falls way over his head.  This movie won 4 Oscars, including the Academy Award for Best Picture.  Once again, Leo didn’t even snag a nomination by the Academy, despite receiving recognition at the Golden Globes.
Frank Wheeler
A strong contender for greatest movie of all time, Revolutionary Road is the story of April and Frank Wheeler, a troubled couple in the 1950s, discussing abortion and divorce in an era where these two concepts were still four-letter words.  Leo plays opposite Kate Winslet and their chemistry is just as tangible as it is in Titanic.  A book before the movie, I did not believe that anyone would be able to capture this complicated, and mostly self-reflective character.  By far Leo’s greatest film, he demonstrates Wheeler’s every thought in such a subtle and powerful way.  Snubbed by the Academy for any recognition after losing his nomination at the Golden Globes, this movie perfectly encapsulates the underrating of Leo.
BUT, all bitterness aside, we can all appreciate Leo’s big win at the 2016 Oscars for The Revenant, and the twenty-years-in-the-making acceptance speech that drove a nation of Leo fanatics to tears.

Queen M’s Oscar Predictions

If it were up to me, the following movies/people would win tonight at the Oscars. Unfortunately, the Academy doesn’t even have an inkling about who I am much less listen to me. So I had to temper my picks based on what I think the Academy will actually pick.

Queen M’s Picks

  • Best Picture: Room
    • Room made me feel all the feels and I empathized with the characters throughout the whole movie. Jacob Tremblay made the film with his excellent acting. In fact, I think Jacob should have been nominated for best actor, but that’s beside the point. Room should win.
  • Best Actor in a Leading Role: Leo in The Revenant…or Matt Damon in The Martian
    • I want Matt Damon to win because I thought he was fantastic, but in reality I think Leo will win. He was great but I’m worried that he’s going to get it simply because it’ll be a huge snub if he doesn’t.
  • Best Actress in a Leading Role: Brie Larson in Room
    • I want her to win AND I think the Academy will pick her. ‘Nuff said.
  • Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Christian Bale in The Big Short
    • I don’t have any particular allegiance to any actor in this section, but I thought Christian played his role very well. I didn’t like his character, but he played it well!
  • Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Alicia Vikander in The Danish Girl
    • The movie wasn’t good, but Alicia was excellent. I almost cried during the scene where she’s asking to talk to her husband. Fantastic.
  • Animated Feature Film: Inside Out
    • This movie made me laugh, cry, and say “awww!” Seriously, this was so good I wish it was nominated for best picture. Plus it has Mindy Kaling, my favorite comedian/role model, as the voice of Disgust.
  • Cinematography: The Revenant
    • I’m no expert on cinematography, but damn it was good enough in this movie for me to notice it.
  • Directing: Spotlight

The other categories I don’t know enough about to make an informed opinion so I won’t even try. Now that you know what I want to win, I’d love to hear what you think!

 

Queen B’s Oscar Predictions

Best PictureSpotlight

Between the story line, superb acting, and the the fact that it’s a true story, Spotlight is prime Oscar material.  The only real competition for Spotlight, in my opinion, is The Revenant, which may give the former a run for its money.  While the Revenant had great cinematography, directing, acting, costumes, etc…, Spotlight will win the Oscar for being greater than the sum of its parts.

See the Queens’ Review of Spotlight Here

Best Actor in a Leading Role – Leonardo DiCaprio

This prediction has nothing to do with the fact that Leo is the love of my life.  Honestly.  Leonardo DiCaprio just killed his role in The Revenant.  And compared to Eddie Redmayne, Bryan Cranston, and Michael Fassbender, this role is almost his for the taking.  The close runner-up, however, will definitely be Matt Damon in The Martian.  We’ll have to see whether the Academy wants a more intense or a more relatable performance.

Read the Queens’ Review of The Revenant

Best Actress in a Leading RoleBrie Larson

Admittedly, this is more of a strong, strong wish than a prediction.  Brie Larson’s portrayal of Joy Newsome in Room was one of the most breathtaking, powerful, and forget-its-a-movie performances I’ve ever seen.  I don’t even feel there is a suitable runner-up for this category.  I still think about her performance and get chills.

Read the Queens’ Review of Room

Best Director– Alejandro Inarritu

Alejandro G. Inarritu won last year for Birdman, and looks to be a favorite of the Academy this year for his directing in The Revenant.  To throw in my two cents, I think Lenny Abrahamson deserves the Oscar for Room.  He managed to create a world entirely through a child’s eyes, while still allowing the audience to understand the horror of the situation.

Best Actor in a Supporting RoleMark Rylance

This category is a bit of a crowded field.  Every character excelled at their parts, but nobody made a strong enough impression to declare a unanimous winner.  Mark Rylance’s character in Bridge of Spies is a Russian prisoner of war, trying to leave America and go home.  I’ve only ever seen Mark Rylance in House of Cards, and this character was such a foil, I forgot it was the same actor.  But, the Oscar is still anybody’s game at this point.

Read the Queens’ Review of Bridge of Spies

Best Actress in a Supporting Role– Alicia Vikander

A favorite of almost all film critics’, Alicia Vikander’s role in The Danish Girl was an unusual part, and she played the emotional parts very well.  I personally don’t have any allegiance to any of these actresses performances, but I think the Academy will choose Vikander over the others.

Read the Queens’ Review of The Danish Girl

Best Original Screenplay– Josh SingerTom McCarthy

These two authors of Spotlight have received numerous awards throughout the season and managed to capture the urgency and truth of the Boston Globe investigation.

Best Adapted Screenplay– Drew Goddard

This adaptation of The Martian was really well done and has received universal acclaim.  This is Goddard’s first Academy nomination, and I think he has it in the bag.

Read the Queens’ Review of The Martian

 

Oscars Brunch

So we were just going to do Oscars dinner, but then we realized this is more of an all day affair for the Queens, so we had to add in brunch as well. The brunch isn’t as fabulously made from scratch as our dinner menu, but it was definitely delicious and something everyone should try. It was definitely worth using some pre-made foods to lessen the workload (especially since we worked so hard to make dinner!). Also, we didn’t want to have to spend too much time away from our TV, of course. Here’s what we did:

Pancakes (made from a Jiffy’s box mix)

Strawberries, blueberries and bananas (simply washed and presented in a bowl)

Cinnamon Rolls (Picked up from the fabulous Ann Sather)

Turkey Sausage (Applegate from Whole Foods)

Hash Brown Patties (Trader Joe’s)

Mimosas (Champagne and OJ, measured perfectly by Queen M)

Here are some pics from the great event!

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The buffet laid out for our friends to pick and choose what they want. Complete with extra icing for the delicious cinnamon rolls. 

 

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Doesn’t our table look so colorful? What a great way to spend Oscars morning with our best friends. 

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Just one of the amazing plates. So tasty. I’m still dreaming about it. 

 

Queen K’s Oscar Predictions

Alright, now I don’t claim to be any superstar movie critic or anything, but I watched *most* of the Oscar nominated films this year so I feel that I have a pretty good handle on the movies. Here’s a rundown of who I think will/want to win the Oscars this year. Maybe this will help you win at your Oscars pool this year. Also, find a list of the nominees here.

Best Picture: Spotlight

Now while I want it to be Room because never have I ever thought continuously about a movie for over a month, I don’t think Room will win. I feel that movies like Room almost never win best picture, they usually win the top acting awards though. So, for my prediction, which I also want to win because I thought it was an excellent movie is Spotlight. Plus, I think they could give a really cool acceptance speech, which I always love to hear.

Actor in a Leading Role: Leonardo DiCaprio

Hands-down if Leo doesn’t win it will be the biggest middle finger from the Academy in all the land in Oscars history (and they have given some pretty big ones in the past…cough, cough Ben Affleck for Argo). Leo deserves this win and he has won every major award this awards season so I really hope he wins the big one. Although, this does mean Internet memers will have to come up with some new Leo memes.

Actress in a Leading Role: Brie Larson

Again, no question, it should be Brie Larson. How could it be anyone else? Her portrayal of the truly unimaginable in Room was such a fabulous and gut wrenching performance that she deserves this honor. Also, I’m sorry, but if they give this award to Jennifer Lawrence I will personally be upset because she was just not very good in Joy (#SorryI’mNotSorry).

Actor in a Supporting Role: Mark Ruffalo

I really loved his character in Spotlight, plus I really just love him so I definitely think he should take it home. I think it’s kind of an outside shot, but why  not root for the underdog?

Actress in a Supporting Role: Alicia Vikander

While I would love for Rachel McAdams to take home this award I think that is too outside of a chance to even happen (sadly). But I really do love her and I thought she did a fabulous, Oscar worthy performance either way. Although Vikander’s role in The Danish Girl was weird and I didn’t particularly care for that movie, I did think she did a great job and I can easily see her walking away with the golden statue.

Animated Feature Film: Inside Out

Okay, one this was a fantastic film, and two it’s Pixar, so I mean does anyone else really even have a chance? No. And, honestly, in my opinion, they shouldn’t. The minds behind this movie are genius because this movie made me think and question things that I had never even considered. I mean they gave our feelings, feelings. WHAT. MIND BLOWN. I’ll never forget during the movie when Joy had her big realization that ‘oh wait, it’s okay to feel sadness because that will bring us happiness eventually.’ I mean WHAT. At that moment I just thought to myself ‘dang it Disney, you’ve done it again.’ What a great movie for all age groups to see.

Cinematography: Mad Max: Fury Road

Now while I thought this was the weirdest movie maybe ever, I will say the cinematography was done beautifully so I think these people should win.

Costume Design: The Danish Girl

Now, while I do think it would be super cool if Cinderella won, and I would say they would be deserving of it, I still think it’s going to The Danish Girl. Those costumes were done so beautifully and although I didn’t like the movie, I did LOVE the costumes, as I wrote about in my post. I felt the costumes kept very well with the time period and I thought they were crafted to perfection. Read this cool article about the costume designs here.

DirectingAlejandro G. Iñárritu

Now, while I admit I don’t know much (anything) about directing, I do think it’s going to the director of The Revenant. If anything, I would think the sub-zero conditions in the wilderness that this guy shot in would be enough to get him the “W.”

Documentary (Feature): ?

Documentary (Short Subject): ?

Unfortunately, I was a little pressed for time this year and did not have time to see these movies. Hopefully I’ll have more time next year! (Although honestly documentaries are not my absolute favorites so watching all of these would probably be a struggle even if I had all the time in the world).

Film Editing: The Revenant

I am not even sure how to judge this one. I guess I need to brush up on my film editing knowledge. I’m going with The Revenant because I imagine that editing this film was no easy task. Although, I can really see any of these films walking away with this one.

Foreign Language Film: ?

Again, didn’t get around to any of these.

Makeup and Hairstyling: Mad Max: Fury Road

The makeup in this movie was done really well and I imagine that there was a lot of it to do. I could also see The Revenant walking away with this one, too.

Music (Original Score)Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight

I have seen this name thrown around a lot as the winner in the (many) prediction articles I’ve read so I’m going with it.

Music (Original Song): “Til it Happens to You” from The Hunting GroundDiane Warren and Lady Gaga

I just see this one winning, don’t you?

Production Design: Mad Max: Fury Road

Short Film (Animated): ?

Short Film (Live Action): ?

Sound Editing: Mad Max: Fury Road

Sound Mixing: Mad Max: Fury Road

Visual Effects: Mad Max: Fury Road

Writing (Adapted Screenplay): Brooklyn

Probably an outside shot, but I would love to see this one win.

Writing (Original Screenplay): Spotlight

I can’t wait to see how these predictions actually play out tonight. Hopefully there will be some surprises because I mean is it really any fun without?

Queen K

Mad Max: Fury Road

Nominations

Best Motion Picture of the Year

Best Achievement in Directing

Best Achievement in Cinematography

Best Achievement in Film Editing

Best Achievement in Costume Design

Best Achievement in Makeup and Hairstyling

Best Achievement in Sound Mixing

Best Achievement in Sound Editing

Best Achievement in Visual Effects

Best Achievement in Production Design

*Warning: Spoilers*

Well, what can I even begin to say about Mad Max? – Tbh, not much.

This film was universally acknowledged to be a bit of an Academy outlier by the Queens.  The nomination of an action film is unusual, and we approached this viewing with high expectations.

Mad Max starts with a promising exposition: the world is set in a post-apocalyptic nightmare, water is an elitist luxury, and people are barely maintaining their humanity.  Except Max, of course, played by Tom Hardy.  We learn barely anything about Max from a voice over at the beginning, detailing his past as a cop and a road warrior  (all aspects explained by the first film) and the fact that he is now in captivity as a blood donor for this dsytopia’s tyrannical ruler.

After a bit of hustle and bustle, which I still don’t fully understand, Max finds himself aiding Furiosa (Charlize Theron) in a high speed chase from the warlord in what seems to be the two hour climax of the entire film.  Furiosa, desperately searching for her childhood home, travels with five of the former brides of the aforementioned warlord.  As a side note, this plot line has been met with both acclaim and disgust for its feminist implications.

As Max and Furiosa sort of find a bond and sort of come to accept their realities, the audience ultimately feels unsatisfied by the roll of credits.  Max is still mad, from what I can tell, water is still one step from nonexistent and though Furiosa and her gang of bad ass brides now lead the post-apocalyptic nightmare, the conclusion seems far from ideal.  I’m all for a sad ending, but after sitting through 120 minutes of dessert scenery and bad music, I would have liked to have felt that the plot moved somewhat.

To give credit where its due, I have to say, the plethora of nominations received by this film were more than well-deserved.  The makeup was amazing, turning each character into their own reflection of horror, the visual effects seemed unreal in the most believable way, and the cinematography blows some of the other films out of the water.  Many loved Mad Max, and this is just one Queens opinion, but this film deserves the Oscar for Best Picture about as much as the first one did.

-Queen B