Academy Awards Week and Gala Oscar Celebration

Democrats Abroad
January 27, 2013

Democrats Abroad, the Paradise Community Center and CompassioNet invite you to attend Academy Award Week with viewings of the nominated movies prior to the grand finale of the Gala Oscar Night Celebration, which will be live-streamed on Sunday, February 24.

The selected films and dates are as follows:

Argo - Sunday, February 17, 1:00 pm

Nominated for Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor—Alan Arkin, Best Editing—William Goldenberg, Best Music—Alexandre Desplat, Best Sound Editing and Sound Mixing as well as Best Adapted Screenplay—Chris Terrio.

This film is based on a true story and a dramatization of the "Canadian Caper" the code name given to a joint covert operation of the Canadian government and the CIA to rescue hostages from Iran. It is a 2012 American thriller directed by and starring Ben Affleck as Tony Mendez, a CIA operative, who led the rescue of six U.S. diplomats during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis.

Les Miserables - Monday, February 18, 7:00 pm

Nominated for Best Picture, Best Actor in a leading role—Hugh Jackman, Best Supporting Actress—Anne Hatheway, Best Costume Design—Paco Delgado, Best Make-up and Styling—Lisa Westcott and Julie Dartnell, Best Production Design, Best Original Song, and Best Sound Mixing.

The film is based on the musical of the same name by Alain Boubil and Claude-Michel Schonberg, which, in turn, is based on the 1862 French novel by Victor Hugo.

The film tells the story of Jean Valijean, an ex-convict who becomes mayor of a town in France. Soon exposed, Valjean agrees to take care of Cosette, the illegitimate daughter of the dying Fantine, but as a fugitive, he must also avoid being captured again by the police. The plot spans 17 years and is set against a backdrop of political turmoil, which culminates in the June Rebellion in France.

Beasts of the Southern Wild - Tuesday, February 19, 7:00 pm

Nominated for Best Picture, Best Actress—Quvenzhane Wallis, Best Directing—Benh Zeitlin, Best Adapted Screenplay—Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin.

The devastated landscape of the Louisiana bayou becomes a primordial world in the eyes of 6-year-old Hushpuppy (the fierce and magnetic Quvenzhané Wallis). Hushpuppy's father Wink (Dwight Henry), emotionally unstable and increasingly ill, fights to maintain their ramshackle home, along with the rest of the precarious community of the area known as the Bathtub--but a Katrinaesque storm leaves the Bathtub flooded, driving Wink to desperate lengths.

The movie is dense and rich, often as obscure and murky as the overgrown bayou itself. Wallis, her performance brimming with feral energy and a wounded soul, carries the movie with more star power than most adults could muster. Teeming with magic, beauty and pure joy, this crowd-pleasing winner at the Sundance Film Festival has emerged as one of the year's most acclaimed films. (This movie has been rescheduled from its original date in the series because of its nomination).

Searching for Sugar Man - Wednesday, February 20, 7:00 pm

Nominated for Best Documentary. Mailik Bendjelloul and Simon Chinn.

This film is a 2012 Swedish/British documentary, detailing the efforts of two Cape Town fans, Stephen 'Sugar' Segerman and Craig Bartholomew Strydom, to find out if the rumored death of American 1970s musician Sixto Rodriquez was true, and, if not, to discover what had become of him.

Rodriguez's music, which never took off in the States, had become wildly popular in South Africa, but little was known about him there. Sixto Rodriguez was a Detroit folksinger who had a short-lived recording career with only two well received but non-selling albums but became a pop icon and inspiration to generations in South Africa.

What follows is a bizarrely heartening story in which they found far more in their quest than they ever hoped, while a Detroit construction laborer discovered that his lost artistic dreams came true after all. (This movie has been rescheduled from its original date in April as a part of the Tuesday night series because of its nomination.)

Silver Linings Playbook - Thursday, February 21, 7:00 pm

Nominated for Best Picture, Best Actor in a major Role—Bradley Cooper, Best Actress in a major role—Jennifer Lawrence, Best Supporting Actor—Robert De Niro, Best Supporting Actress—Jacki Weaver, Best Director—David O. Russell, Best Editing—Jay Cassidy and Crispin Struthers, Best Adapted Screenplay—David O. Russell.

This film is an American romantic comedy-drama which opened to critical acclaim in both Canada and the USA. The plot revolves around a former teacher with bi-polar disorder (Pat Soltano, played by Bradley Cooper) who, after a stint in a mental institution, moves back in with his parents and tries to reconcile with his ex-wife. Things get more challenging when Pat meets Tiffany, a mysterious girl with problems of her own.

Flight - Friday, February 22, 7:00 pm

Nominated for Best Actor—Denzel Washington and Best Original Screenplay—John Gatins. Also starring Don Cheadle. Melissa Leo, Bruce Greenwood, Kelly Reilly, and John Goodman.

Although not a Best Picture nominee, this film contains a riveting performance in a major role by one of our most accomplished actors in a powerfully-written drama.

The Hollywood Reporter's Todd McCarthy wrote that the film "provides Denzel Washington with one of his meatiest, most complex roles, and he flies with it. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film four stars (out of four) writing, "Flight segues into a brave and tortured performance by Denzel Washington—one of his very best. Not often does a movie character make such a harrowing personal journey that keeps us in deep sympathy all of the way." Richard Corliss of Time wrote, "Denzel Washington's performance is a triumph" and other reviewers predict that his acting in this role will be talked about for years.

Life of Pi - Saturday, February 23, 4:00 pm

Nominated for Best Picture, Best Directing—Ang Lee, Best Cinematography—Claudio Miranda, Best Editing—Jim Squyres, Best Music—Mychael Danne, Best Production Design, Best Original Song, Best Sound Mixing and Editing, Best Adapted Screenplay—David Magee and Best Visual Effects.

This film is a 2012 American adventure drama based on Yann Martel's 2001 novel of the same name. The film stars Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Gerard Depardieu, Tabu, and Adil Hussain.

The storyline revolves around a 16-year old boy named Piscine Molitor "Pi" Patel, who survives a shipwreck in which his family dies, and is stranded in the Pacific Ocean in a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.

The film has incredible and ingenious visual and sound effects. The sea journey takes them from India to Mexico.

Lincoln - Saturday, February 23, 7:00 pm

Nominated for Best Picture, Best Actor—Daniel Day-Lewis, Best Supporting Actress—Sally Field, Best Supporting Actor—Tommy Lee Jones, Best Cinematography—Janusz Kaminski, Best Costume Design—Joanna Johnson, Best Directing—Steven Spielberg, Best Editing—Michael Kahn, Best Music—John Williams, Best Production Design, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Adapted Screenplay—Tony Kushner.

Graced with the most nominations, this film describes America's president Lincoln during the Civil War as he struggles with continuing carnage on the battlefield and fights with many inside his own cabinet on the decision to emancipate the slaves. His task is a race against time, for peace may come at any time, and if it comes before the amendment is passed, the returning southern states will stop it before it can become law.

Lincoln must, by almost any means possible, obtain enough votes from a recalcitrant Congress before the war ends. Yet the president is torn, as an early peace would save thousands of lives. As the nation confronts its conscience over the freedom of an entire population, Lincoln faces his own crisis of conscience - end slavery or end the war.

Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Paradise Community Center. Advance tickets are 75 pesos each. Tickets may also be purchased at the door one hour before each film for 100 pesos, subject to availability.

The week will culminate in the live-streaming of the Awards Ceremony and an awards gala celebration, produced by the Paradise Community Center and CompassioNet.

Enjoy live-streaming video of the 85th Academy Awards. Draws, raffles, prizes, good food, good times, and all for a good cause!

Join us on Sunday, February 24 at 4:00 pm for all the glitz and glam of show business' biggest night!

We are in need of volunteers to help on the Film Nights and the Oscar celebration. If you are interested, please let us know which of the events you are interested in by contacting Tobe Jensen or David and Judy, for helping with box office and ticket taking or Joy Lehman for the Gala event.

Paradise Community Center is located at 127 Pulpito in Old Town Vallarta, directly across from Coco's Kitchen.

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