Re: Rate the last movie you watched.
Saw Zero Dark Thirty yesterday. It's getting a ton of backlash, but I'm not really getting it. I thought it was excellent. It's completely plot driven, so there's almost no character development. That definitely hurt it in spots. The only character they really push is Jessica Chastain's Mya, and with her it's nothing but obsession. And by the time it's over, she's wholly unlikable. They really lost an opportunity because the blowing up of the other chick wound up feeling like a lost opportunity. A newscast saying she was the mother of three is like 10 dollars short and 2 weeks too late.
The other missed opportunity was Jason Clarke's Dan. He jumped out early as a fascinating introduction into this world, serving to teach our character, and in the process the audience. We got tons of set up into him cracking, but never really got to see the payoff, and then they just sort of dropped him out of the second act altogether. He was good enough in his limited role I wouldn't have been opposed to a best supporting nod if he got it, but in the end there probably wasn't enough there.
All that said, the thing was really tense. And seeing as I already knew much of the story, or at least bits of the story, if not entirely how those bits tied together, that was a real achievement in direction. A lot of shock value imagery early on. The constant tracking of dead leads and the pressure it was building. A couple of gorgeous set pieces, like the take down at the garden, and obviously that closing infultration was incredibly well done.
At 2 and half hours, I actually thought it didn't have a ton of dead spots. Even if a little too much of it was layered tension of people arguing. But all in all it was really good. I'm really surprised she didn't get a directing nod, because I really felt like she did a great job piecing together a disjointed narrative while maintaining some sense of secrecy as it went, and built a ton of tension, all while doing it in a story the entire audience knew the ending too. It's not my favorite movie of the year, but I thought it was probably more well assembled than anything else. And that isn't something I expected, especially considering The Hurt Locker is really a sequence of set pieces with less cohesive narrative than this.
Overall I'd give it a high 80s.