Two Summer Oscar contenders… The Help and Beginners

The summer movie season brings big blockbusters and big box office, but sometimes it can also bring some seriously good Oscar worthy films. In fact, last summer we had four Oscar contenders released in this busy season: Toy Story 3, Inception and the indies Winter’s Bone and The Kids are Alright. This summer we will likely see a couple of contenders arise among the indie crop most notably Beginners from Focus Films. This dramatic comedy features Ewan MacGregor as a man whose relationships all seem to fall apart and his journey with a new love played by Melanie Laurent (Inglorious Basterds). All the while, he will also be grappling with the revelation that his ailing, elderly father (Christopher Plummer) has just come out of the closet. The film played to raves on the festival circuit last year and should appeal to art house, gay and adult audiences and it looks pretty great from the trailer below. I foresee the film being a serious contender in the Oscar race for Screenplay and Supporting Actor which could finally net previousĀ Oscar loser Plummer (The Last Station) his first competitive Academy Award. We may also see it factor in the Picture and Actor races if it’s received well. Check out the trailer for the film below and watch it in theatres in June.

Beginners

One studio film that could make the race for the Oscars is the upcoming adaptation of the massively popular race relations novel of Kathryn Stockett’s The Help. The film centers on a young white writer (Golden Globe nominee Emma Stone) in the 1960’s who seeks to tell the story of the African-American maids in the Southern town she grew up in. The story is ripe for laughter, tears and drama and could feature a breakout performance by Octavia Spencer. In fact, I think Spencer and Viola Davis (a previous Oscar nominee for Doubt) will both contend in the Supporting Actress race while the film could land in Picture, Costume Design and Adapted Screenplay. If it garners a following, it might even contend in Direction and Actress (Stone). Other big names in the cast include Bryce Dallas Howard, Allison Janney and Oscar winner Sissy Spacek. For more on that film, head here and check out the trailer for The Help below. Watch for it to hit theatres in August.

The Help
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1454029/

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