I got Oscars on the brain this week, so I decided to go with Best Picture-winning Love Triangles. I even had to stretch it for one (or two) of these, but that's okay. When I get what I think is a clever idea, I just have to run with it. I even picked all of these last year at some point, but I just don't care.
It's Thursday, Oscar Thursday, and I have a trio of films that feature the Love Triangle element the Wanderer of Wandering through the Shelves is looking for this week as part of the ongoing Thursday Movie Picks.
Here are mine, Best Picture-style:
Dir. Billy Wilder, 1960
C.C. "Bud" Baxter (Jack Lemmon) is one of the most relatable characters in all of movies, at least for a guy like me. He is lonely, abused for success, in love with the elevator girl in his Manhattan office building, Miss Kubelik (Shirley MacLaine). Little does he know, his own boss, the man who will take him up the corporate ladder, Mr. Sheldrake (Fred MacMurray) is carrying on an affair with none other than his crush. Guys like me hate guys like Sheldrake, a man in it "for a couple laughs," while we Mr. Nice Guys lie in wait. That is what speaks so loudly in this film. A woman cares for two men, one was there first, but which one is right? It is a true classic
Dir. Milos Forman, 1984
For my non-traditional pick this week, I give you the story of a passionate, jealous feud over the most glorious music ever written and the favor of the masses, led my the Emperor of Austria (Jeffrey Jones). Salieri (F. Murray Abraham) loves music. Mozart (Tom Hulce) loves music. One is a prodigal, cackling child. The other a serious man whose faith is tested to the other's detriment. The triangle this creates is of the purest kind. It is the driving force of one of the best movies ever made.
Dir. Martin Scorsese, 2006
At the center of Martin Scorsese's remake of the acclaimed Hong Kong film, Infernal Affairs, is a woman played by Vera Farmiga. She is a therapist for the state, working with troubled Staties in Boston. While forcing therapy on Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio), an attraction ensues, leading to some much-called-for steaminess, albeit briefly. The problem is that she is engaged to Billy's unknown nemesis, the crooked Statie detective, Colin Sullivan (Matt Damon). This might not work if Farmiga wasn't so perfect. Alas, she is, and it does.
A Bonus Best Picture Nominee
Dir. John Crowley, 2015
The greatest thing about Brooklyn is how much it makes you love everybody in it. There is no intense jealousy or rivalry. Just an honest look at the life choices confronted by Eilis (Saoirse Ronan), a young Irish girl trying to make good in America while her home keeps calling her back. America is represented by the charming Tony (Emory Cohen), an Italian-American with a heart of gold. Ireland has Jim Farrell (Domhnall Gleeson) in its corner. Both of these men color places that hold our heroine's heart. The choice is of a home. Either would satisfy. One has the edge.