Robert Redford has a real chance at the Oscars with 'All Is Lost'
Cinemagoers are spoilt for choice this weekend as awards season begins to come into focus and the major studios release their best hopes for the Globes and Oscars in 2014. Captain Phillips and Gravity are still around though an interesting new offering takes elements of both - namely, isolation and the ocean.
Robert Redford in 'All Is Lost
Robert Redford stars in All Is Lost, a tense adventure movie about a man who must fight for survival after being lost at sea. It's written and directed by J.C Chandor - the man behind the exceptional and severely underrated banking crisis movie Margin Call - and features Redford as the sole cast member. There's also next to no dialogue and the shooting script was only 31 pages long. It's testament to Redford then that the reviews have focused on the veteran's ability to keep the audience gripped.
"Redford, who can play intelligence, wit and nuance to a camera like nobody's business, holds us in his grip. It's a master class in acting," said Peter Travers of Rolling Stone.
"Palpably suspenseful, engrossing, bold and intelligent. It's a new American classic that will be remembered in many years to come. Robert Redford delivers a tour de force performance," said NYC Movie Guru.
"Chandor proves that the elements, combined with the varied and subtle talents of a veteran actor, are all that is needed to make a captivating, nail-biting thriller," wrote USA Today.
""All Is Lost," which is only Chandor's second film, reveals itself as remarkably skillful, surprisingly insightful and deeply moving," Los Angeles Times.
"I bought in-much to my surprise, since it promised to be a stunt-and far from feeling any remorse, I grew more invested as the going got rough," wrote the Wall Street Journal.
Robert Redford Could Well Be Oscar Nominated For His Role in 'All Is Lost'
During an interview after All Is Lost's screening at the Cannes Film Festival, J.C Chandor spoke of Redford's minimal dialogue in the movie, telling Indiewire, "What you see in the film is all he was ever supposed to do. When I have people around, I'm a chatterbox. But when I'm alone, I never speak. I don't talk to myself; it's just not my schtick. And this character is me. Someone was like, "Is this your father?" No, it's not my father, it's actually me. This is me afraid of dying and dealing with myself dying."
On how he came to cast Redford - an undoubtedly fine actor though perhaps not every director's first port of call - Chandor explained, "I had just finished writing the script and I was at Sundance Labs with about 200 new filmmakers, and he comes and gives you this great welcome speech. I was in the back of the room and the speaker behind me was unplugged. I can barely hear him but suddenly it crackled to life and that buttery voice that he has was right in my ear."
The bookmakers have the Oscar for Best Actor going to either Redford for All Is Lost or Chiwetel Ejiofor for Twelve Years a Slave - Matthew McConaughey, Bruce Dern and Idris Elba are considered outsiders, as is Tom Hanks.