In the days leading up to the Oscars, Sentimental Movie Marathon will take a look at each of the Best Picture Nominees. This is OSCAR BONANZA: TOO MUCH FILM IN YO’ FACE. We draw near the end with a look at The Hurt Locker.
1. WHAT IS THE HURT LOCKER?
The Hurt Locker is the long-coming sequel to Kathryn Bigelow’s film Point Break. This film makes the left-field choice of not following Johnny Utah in his continuing adventures. Instead, Bigelow turns the lens on an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit in Iraq. The unit deals with not only bombs but also new squad leader Ranger Sergeant First Class William James (Jeremy Renner). Both are explosive! William James is explosive in the brash and dangerous way he approaches his job. Bombs are explosive in duh.
Bigelow’s film presents the harsh realities of war. In an extraordinary way, the film is able to maintain the various shades of gray associated with war in the Middle East, its perception, and its participants. Like this year’s also excellent The Messengers, The Hurt Locker also takes a look at what happens when William James rejoins American life.
2. WHAT DOES THE HURT LOCKER HAVE GOING FOR IT?
Well, much like period pieces, the Oscars love war films. They want to make gold babies with war films. Especially war films that are as intense, real, and current as The Hurt Locker. Given that stories about the experience of the Iraq War is sort of taboo, such a look in is fascinating.
Also, The Hurt Locker is also high on everyone’s list of OSCAR INTRIGUE. James Cameron vs. Kathryn Bigelow! Former star-crossed lovers getting star crossed again to battle it out for golden statues! It’s like a prize fight, but instead of a prize fight, it’s a movie awards ceremony.
The cast of The Hurt Locker, while mostly unknown (except for a cameo by Voldemort), handles the weight of the roles very well. Especially Jeremy Renner! Wow, he is a lead actor and a half, I tell you what.
3. WHAT WILL MAKE THE HURT LOCKER HURT FROM NOT LOCKING UP THE AWARDS?
Apparently, lots of things. The Hurt Locker is the perceived front runner (Fuck you very much, Avatar) and as so, has been piling up attacks. Jezebel, doing their research, being good at news, has a good run down of some negativity and double standards.
Lots of the questions about the film have to do with The Hurt Locker‘s degrees of reality, patriotism, and presentation of the military. Granted, these are interesting questions, but sometimes they seem to be just grasping for straws (and by straws, I mean things that will undermine The Hurt Locker). It’s hard out there for an Oscar front-runner.
Also, SOMEONE SHOWS UP
Gah. Just kidding! Evangeline Lilly is fine in her short role.
4. WILL I TOTALLY LOSE MY SHIT IF THE HURT LOCKER WINS?
No! The Hurt Locker is a great movie! To the haters, I say this