You may notice a lot of movie posts coming up in the next week. It’s because the Oscars are on Sunday, and I want to make sure you (and I) are as prepared for them as possible.
That’s also mildly misleading, considering that Somewhere wasn’t nominated for a single Academy Award. But it should have been.
If the trailer seems light on words, you should see the film. The first ten minutes has literally no dialogue. It is a slow, patient film–one without a formula or a solution. More than a film, it is video art. Despite the fact that writer-director Sofia Coppola won a Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival for this film (she is the first female director to do so), this true cinematic masterpiece received absolutely zero Oscar love. And that, friends, is a travesty.
Somewhere is the kind of movie that does really well at small film festivals but that few people actually see. It’s the kind of movie that is driven by its characters and not by plot–more of a profile than a story. It is just a polaroid of a father-daughter relationship in a second in time. But it’s beautiful. Heartbreaking and subtle and beautiful. I truly wish the Academy would have expanded their views to see that this movie is Oscar worthy.
If you do see it, have the patience it has. Do not expect a big scene or a blow up; there is very little drama. Throughout the film, I kept anticipating the angry texts the main character was receiving (presumably from a scorned former partner) to circle around and affect his life in person. Nothing like that happens though. Just like when Elle Fanning’s Cleo breaks down about her absentee parents, Stephen Dorff’s Johnny can only hug her and tell her not to cry. You want more from him–in the movies, people usually know exactly what to say and burst into comforting monologue. Coppola doesn’t let that happen. She stays true to her story and her characters.
One other thing I have to add is how marvelous Elle Fanning is. I’ve never had an opinion one way or the other about her sister who has been on the screen since she was a tot, but the younger Fanning has so much more potential if you ask me. In that trailer, her only line is “Hi, Dad,” but her facials and body language express so much that you know exactly who she is without words. She is a talented young girl, and I cannot wait to see more from her.
We can leave the Twilight franchise to her sister.