Hello, fellow moviegoers!
As the Oscars draw closer, more and more people are going out of their way to see more and more movies. One film that has been on peoples’ minds quite a bit is Joy.
Joy is directed by David O’Russel (Silver Linings Playbook, American Hustle), and it stars Jennifer Lawrence, Bradley Cooper, and Robert De Niro. It is the story of a girl named Joy. She’s always had a passion for creating new useful things. This passion, unfortunately, was put on hold for a good portion of her life as she was too busy keeping her family together, raising kids, dealing with her ex-husband, and about everything else you can imagine. Joy is the story of her taking her life into her own hands and chasing her dreams. David O’Russel and Jennifer Lawrence have made a good one-two punch in the past, so how do they work this time?
Joy is definitely a film to watch this awards season. Not necessarily for the story, but for the performances (which is a good parallel to this season’s awards race as a whole).
Bradley Cooper portrays his character of Neil Walker very well. He is supposed to be one of the best business men around, and Cooper was able to convey that extremely well. Is anyone really surprised that Robert De Niro was great? We’ve just come to expect that from him. I mean, he’s Robert De Niro. Don’t expect to see him get nominated for anything, but he definitely adds another layer to this film. He works very well as a comedic relief, as well as being an emotional tether to Joy’s past. Jennifer Lawrence’s performance in the lead role of Joy is the one to really pay attention to this next month or so. She was fantastic in this film! Isn’t she always? She will no doubt get nominated for Best Lead Actress in the Oscars this year, whether she will win or not is another question.
Looking back, I can’t help but feel that Joy was lacking something. It didn’t seem to hit as well as it could. It feels like one of those movies that you see and then forget completely about six months down the road. Maybe it has something to do with the way the story was told.
The story was told through the perspective of Joy’s grandmother. Or at least, they tell you it is. She narrates the first five minutes of the film, and then it’s as if O’Russel and company simply forgot that’s what they were going for. The film overall is told just like any other film, it just follows our protagonist through all of their triumphs and hardships. It would have been a better decision just to pitch the idea of the grandmother telling the story into the trash altogether.
The film as a whole is a very good film, and one that I would recommend. Joy did do a great job at making the audience feel all of the emotions Joy is going through. You feel the weight of the situations she gets herself into. The audience is disappointed when she fails, but then almost stand up and cheer when we see her succeed. The emotion in this film was what really made it an enjoyable experience.
Also, the tone throughout the whole thing was perfect for this film. It wasn’t a super-serious drama like most Oscar contenders. It had a bit of a lighter tone. It was never really dark, which fit the film extremely well. While it should not have been considered a Comedy/Musical at the Golden Globes, it’s got humor in it and a generally light-hearted feel.
At the end of the day, Joy is a very good film. It’s a great look at somebody chasing their dreams, and all of the highs and lows that come with that. The performances are great, especially Lawrence. The storytelling methods were a bit odd, and it seems to be missing something. I would recommend Joy, but don’t beat yourself up if you miss it.
What did you think of Joy? What are Jennifer Lawrence’s chances of winning Best Lead Actress at the Oscars next month? Let me know by commenting on this post! Also, if you enjoyed this review, share it on Facebook and Twitter. It really helps! Don’t forget, I post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, so check back then for more movie reviews and editorials! The nominations for this year’s Oscars are to be announced tomorrow morning so check back Friday for my reaction to that!
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