Not much needs to be said about this mysterious late December historical film. Combine the talents of legendary director Martin Scorsese, frequent collaborator Jay Cocks (“Age of Innocence”, “Gangs of New York”), and an ensemble cast lead by Andrew Garfield (“The Amazing Spider-Man”, “Hacksaw Ridge”), Adam Driver (“Star Wars: The Force Awakens”) and Liam Neeson, and you have the formula for yet another successful addition to Scorsese’s revered filmography.
3. Hidden Figures
During the Cold War’s Space Race, it turns out NASA had to result to recruiting African American female mathematicians to catch up to the, then-ahead, Soviet Union. The upcoming biopic “Hidden Figures” seeks to shed light on this untold story, focusing on the lives of three of the women specifically, played by a trio of talented actresses.
While it may be the case that black ensemble period movies have been favored “Oscar bait” by the Academy since “Dreamgirls” in 2006, that does not impose any preconceptions on the quality of their narrative in the slightest. “Hidden Figures” seems to be doing a solid job revealing the efforts of these women.
It is true that, unless you are James Cameron or Steven Spielberg, it can be very hard to turn the Academy’s attention towards a big-budget science fiction movie, but so Dennis Villeneuve seems to be doing with “Arrival”, a first-encounter story that appears to be taking an “ET” approach towards the subject of aliens interacting with humanity. Currently holding a rare 100% rating on the review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes, “Arrival’s” premature reception speaks for itself.
1. Hacksaw Ridge
It is a fact of life that people love triumphant returns. When an actor or filmmaker has been down on their luck, even the smallest hint that they could be making a return to form generates enough buzz to trend on social media: Burt Reynolds received many awards for his staunch rebound in “Boogie Nights”; millions of fans gathered to watch M. Night Shyamalan’s indie film “The Visit”; and Josh Trank of “Fant4stic” is already sparking up online interest with his upcoming Al Capone biopic “Fonzo”.
Such is the case with Mel Gibson, a very talented actor/director who made the unfortunate mistake of publicly going on an anti-Semitic drunk rant in 2006. The resulting 10 years since were filled with career lows for Gibson, who had to resort to doing either minor roles in blockbusters or direct-to-DVD action films.
This month may prove to be the end of Gibson’s unofficial ban from Hollywood as his latest work, “Hacksaw Ridge” will open to much anticipation. The film, which reportedly received a near 10-minute standing ovation at the Venice Film Festival, tells the real-life story of Desmond Doss, a conscientious objector who saved over 70 soldiers without firing a single bullet during World War II. Given how much the Oscars love war dramas, especially ones that resonate so well with critics, we can expect a few Oscar nods this year.
Author Bio: Red Stewart is big fan of the entertainment industry, with insights into film, television, and video games for starters. Despite growing up in the 21st century’s era of modernization, he prefers many retro era ideas over the current trends found in many of today’s media. Personally he’s an introvert who loves reading as much as gaming.