The student-run news site of Le Moyne College.

The Dolphin

The student-run news site of Le Moyne College.

The Dolphin

The student-run news site of Le Moyne College.

The Dolphin

Navigating College Stress: Effective Strategies and Le Moyne Resources for Student Well-being
Mai Aljanabi, Staff Writer • September 27, 2023

College life presents unique challenges and stressors for students, impacting their mental well-being and overall success. This article delves...

via The Huntington
Persistence Into Brilliance: Le Moyne Graduate and Actor Makes Major Mark
Kamilla Shahzad, Staff Writer • September 26, 2023

In the world of theater, Le Moyne College graduate John Douglas Thompson is known to possess an exceptional ability to captivate audiences, effortlessly...

Le Moyne Alum and MLB Star Josiah Gray Nominated for Roberto Clemente Award
Michael Scalise, Staff Writer • September 25, 2023

Here at Le Moyne, the phrase “Greatness meets Goodness” is at the very foundation by which the school stands, and it is safe to say that...

Career Advising & Development at Le Moyne
Career Advising & Development at Le Moyne
Carly Nicolai, Editor in Chief • September 18, 2023

“What do you want to do with your degree?” It’s a question many college students have heard before, whether it comes from friends and...

Growing Sunshine-Colored Flowers: Remembering Father Bosch
Growing Sunshine-Colored Flowers: Remembering Father Bosch
Stephanie R. Duscher, Staff Writer • September 16, 2023

Many Le Moyne students have likely walked by the lovely gardens outside the Jesuit Residence–a beautiful touch of color amidst the many cloudy...

2011 in Movies: The Good, the Bad, and the Meh

At its very best and its very worst, the film industry has a way of transporting us into new worlds or at the very least, taking us to places we haven’t yet seen and giving us fresh takes on those we have. In past years, we’ve witnessed that with massive blockbusters like “Avatar” and “Inception” and smaller films like “Black Swan” and “The Hurt Locker.”

But 2011 was a different creature altogether. Week after week, movies seemed only to say, “Remember that one time? That was pretty amazing.” Over the course of 12 months, we revisited Spielberg’s golden age (“Super 8”), the transition from silent film to sound (“The Artist”), franchises nearly forgotten (“Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” “Scream 4”) and nearly every decade of the past century (“The Help”, “Hugo”).

While this was admittedly a nice device for some good ol’ nostalgia, it also seemed to indicate a certain lack of originality across the board. Sequels in particular came off as nothing more than lazy rehashes of their predecessors. Entries like “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” “The Hangover Part II” and “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” fell for the old “bigger is better” cliche. And you know you’re in trouble when Pixar lets you down (“Cars 2,” anyone?).

Simply put, 2011 was not the best year for film fans. More often than not, movies seemed content with being “good” rather than “great.” Although Oscar favorites “The Artist,” “Hugo,” “The Tree of Life” and “Midnight in Paris” are indeed worth seeing, none of them can be considered spectacular (at least, not from this writer’s standpoint).

In fact, the year’s strongest work, “Drive,” was almost completely ignored by the Academy. Despite featuring near-flawless performances, direction, cinematography, music, etc., Nicolas Winding Refn’s bold crime thriller earned exactly one nomination for sound editing. Not even Albert Brooks’s frightening turn as a local movie producer and gangster could capture the Academy’s full attention.

Thankfully, “The Descendants” did. Featuring superb Oscar-nominated writing and a terrific ensemble cast, “The Descendants” is a simultaneously charming and melancholy look at the messiness of life. As a father forced to deal with his wife’s recent boating accident, his unruly daughters and 25,000 acres of Hawaiian land owned by his family, George Clooney gives one of the year’s best performances. No matter how much he tries to keep things in control, there’s a sadness on Clooney’s face that signifies his life is slowly falling apart.

Like “Drive,” “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2” and “50/50” were wrongfully glanced over by the Academy, though these snubs come as less of a surprise. Neither had much Oscar buzz to begin with and yet they remain two of the year’s best. The former closes out a fantastical phenomenon in the best way possible while the latter incites laughs and tears in equal measure.

As always, too many great films went unnoticed. “Atonement” director Joe Wright’s first stab at action, “Hanna,” turned out to be two hours of sheer fun. Paul Giamatti commanded the screen with a masterful performance in “Barney’s Version.” Perhaps the most heartbreaking oversight was that of “Drive Angry”: a hilarious, intentionally goofy tribute to grindhouse that was dismissed by most as “just another dumb Nicolas Cage movie.”

Unfortunately, there’s not much to say about the year’s weak entries. The absolute worst included “Sucker Punch,” “Red Riding Hood,” “Battle: Los Angeles” and “Transformers: Dark of the Moon,” none of which should come as a major shock. Michael Bay’s “Dark of the Moon” is about a half-step up from the execrable “Revenge of the Fallen” and is somehow out-Bayed by the headache-inducing “Battle: Los Angeles.” “Red Riding Hood” makes at least two of the “Twilight” movies look good (no small feat) and “Sucker Punch” is perhaps one of the most unpleasant movies to come out in a long time.

If there’s anything to be taken away from 2011, it’s that Hollywood should take a note from Woody Allen and focus on what’s great about the here and now as opposed to the there and then. And, of course, no one should settle for “good.”

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