Fabulous Prairie Miller choreographed a virtual award ceremony on WBAI (NYC’s famous Pacifica radio station) last week for members of the Women Film Critics Circle (WFCC). I dialed in from Chicago & added my voice to the discussion. The options were a bit off from my POV (which I believe was a result of the fact that many screeners went out very late this year, if at all), but I did my best to play by the rules, voting for my Top Pick from among options offered in each category, & adding my own two cents whenever I thought I had something relevant to say. A complete list of options is available in my pdf (with winners marked in red & my votes marked in pink).
I unwittingly sparked controversy (what, Jan, again?!?), by including UP IN THE AIR in the “Hall of Shame.” Some members got upset & even suggested a retraction. Well, first of all, I thought I was playing by the rules (make a suggestion & say why), so I’m not inclined to retract. Furthermore, I sincerely believe this is a mediocre film that treats its female characters very badly. I’m particularly incensed about the “Alex” character played by Vera Farmiga, but I don’t think any of the female characters fare much better. As for the snippets of “real people” talking about their actual layoffs, I think there’s more heart in the first 30 minutes of KIT KITTREDGE & way better analysis in AMERICA CASINO. Ironic that I should thereby find myself in the company of Jim Jones, who had this to say in last week’s issue of the Chicago Reader: “…UP IN THE AIR isn’t really about these people—they’re just the topical garnish for a modern Cary Grant movie.”
Whoa! I’m disagreeing with members of the Women Film Critics Circle, but agreeing with Jim Jones?!? Well, my friends, that’s what makes the world turn J