Sunday, July 18, 2010

An Oscar Well Earned

I used to think that Jeff Bridges was underestimated as an actor, so I was pleased when he won the Academy Award for "Crazy Heart." Now that I've seen the movie, I'm even happier about his well-earned Oscar.

Bridges makes the tragic figure of Bad Blake his own as he journeys through the wreckage of past mistakes and their bitter consequences. Blake is a miserable, washed-up alcoholic singer-songwriter, remarkably talented but so enslaved by his addiction that he's trapped himself in a destructive downward spiral. Once a superstar of country music, he's been reduced to playing gigs at bowling alleys and bars in remote locations.

While country music is not my favorite form, I could listen to the "Crazy Heart" soundtrack every day. In fact, a couple of the movie's songs have found a home in my i-Pod.

Bad Blake's painful struggle to reach the hopefulness and promise of the final scenes is the soul of "Crazy Heart," and Jeff Bridges brings it to vivid life at all stages. Robert Duvall, who liked the book so much he was one of the film's producers, plays a memorable supporting role with his customary star power. Scott Cooper, who wrote the screenplay from Thomas Cobb's novel, directs with heart and grit.

After seeing "Crazy Heart," no one will ever underestimate Jeff Bridges. I love happy endings!