Directed by Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Produced by Ram Bergman
Written by Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore, Brie Larson and Tony Danza
A porn addict (Gordon-Levitt) enters a serious relationship with his dream girl (Johansson).
Gordon-Levitt's directorial debut is a solid outing for the multi-hyphenate. The film is lean, well-shot and very entertaining, while the cast deliver good performances. There's a lot to enjoy, but the film doesn't feel like a complete one. Shifting from a light fantasy to a quiet nightmare, the narrative seems disjointed, and the idea behind the film appears deeper than the film itself. The subject matter is important, yet the unbalanced film is a mostly pleasant encounter with an interesting lead character and underwritten supporting ones. Though underwhelming, it's a decent effort, which is promising for Gordon-Levitt's future as a writer/director.
Oscar Potential: None
Directed by Ron Howard
Produced by Andrew Eaton, Eric Fellner, Brian Oliver, Peter Morgan, Brian Grazer and Ron Howard
Written by Peter Morgan
Starring Chris Hemsworth, Daniel Brühl, Olivia Wilde and Christian McKay
James Blunt (Hemsworth) and Niki Lauda (Brühl) compete for the World Drivers Championship.
Based on a true story, this racing drama is a highly stylized burst of fun. Ron Howard has teamed up with screenwriter Peter Morgan again, producing a strong character piece with thrilling racing sequences. Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brühl are appropriately cast, and the swagger of both drivers comes across in their performances, which rely on the chemistry between the actors. Brühl's direct and focused Lauda is the perfect counterbalance to Hemsworth's cocky and wild Blunt. The cinematography, editing, production design and sound are fantastic, making this technical achievement a fine time spent at the cinema.
Oscar Potential: Best Supporting Actor (Brühl), Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score, Best Makeup and Hairstyling, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects