Patricia Yarberry Allen, M.D. is a Gynecologist, Director of the New York Menopause Center, Clinical Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Weill Cornell Medical College, and Assistant Attending Obstetrician and Gynecologist at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. She is a board certified fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Dr. Allen is also a member of the Faculty Advisory Board and the Women’s Health Director of The Weill Cornell Community Clinic (WCCC). Dr. Allen was the recipient of the 2014 American Medical Women’s Association Presidential Award.

Writers for womensvoicesforchange.org offer their own opinions about who should win or not before the spectacle begins.  Have a great night and join us as we gape and gossip, compare notes and opinions on our site during our sixth year at the Oscars together.

 

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL

I went into Wes Anderson’s elaborate candy box of a movie with extremely high hopes, having loved Moonrise Kingdom so much two years before. Frankly, I was disappointed. There was a darkness to the story and some of the characters that didn’t fit with Anderson’s style for me. As usual, it was fun to spot each new celebrity in his or her silly cameo role and the art direction was absolutely giddy. But I left unsatisfied.

Alexandra MacAaron

What’s the word I’m looking for . . . coy? precious? arch? Well, this movie was way too simperingly coy/precious/arch for my taste.

Deborah Harkins

This was a good movie, but I never expected it to be nominated. It is like the black sheep of the litter. But the acting was terrific. It was almost like a Charlie Chaplin type movie in its bizarre happenings. I don’t expect it to win, but it is nice to see that the Academy does choose movies that are quite unique.

Ellensue Spicer-Jacobson

BIRDMAN (OR THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE)


My father worked at Broadway theatres for years, so Birdman’s maze of corridors and dressing rooms felt achingly familiar to me. This surreal film really captures the otherworld actors inhabit backstage — when the play takes over and everything outside the theatre disappears. Michael Keaton’s work, as an action hero has-been who may or may not have super powers (and may or may not have lost his mind) is just tremendous. Powerful, powerful movie!

 Alexandra MacAaron

Oh, my word, I could not STAND Birdman!! Absolutely hated it. It made me wonder if I’d ever liked actors at all. Something about the inbred quality of actors acting on stage in a movie and talking about acting just made me want to heave. Too self-referential, narcissistic, and creepy for me. And even if that was the point of the film (what was the point of the film?), I still couldn’t stand it.

Molly Fisk

BOYHOOD

The production process behind John Linklater’s filmic experiment — the same cast, filmed a week each summer for 12 years — would make Boyhood novel enough. But the movie transcends its form on many levels; the everyday stories, the brilliant cast and the sensitive meditation on time, growth and family truly resonate. I’ll applaud a Best Picture win (if it can beat Birdman), and fully expect Patricia Arquette to accept a much-deserved honor; the movie was as much about “motherhood” as “boyhood.

  Alexandra MacAaron                                                               

This film is probably my favorite, because I have loved Patricia Arquette since her role in Medium, and I thought she played a fantastic role in Boyhood. She certainly deserved the Golden Globe award, and I am not sure why she is considered a supporting actress when I think she was the lead actress in it. I hope she wins.

Ellensue Spicer-Jacobson

                                                                                      

       

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING

Benedict Cumberbatch was superb as Alan Turing, even though the movie was not exactly true to his life. He has an ethereal look about him that makes him appear otherworldly or in his own world, and he was able to use that in his acting. Terrible that his greatness was eclipsed by his being gay, which was considered a crime. But we cannot deny what he did to shorten the war, and for that he is a hero in my book of names.

Ellensue Spicer-Jacobson

Felicity Jones in The Theory of Everything was quite believable in her role as the wife of Stephen Hawking. This movie is about the strength of the human spirit, reflected in both leading actors. I cannot imagine the stress that Hawking’s wife survived, and the fact that they are no longer married could be for any number of reasons, namely burnout.  She needed a more normal existence and yet was compelled to preserve her husband’s life. A very interesting marriage that survived longer than I would have expected.

Ellensue Spicer-Jacobson

JIULIANNE MOORE

This is the fifth Oscar nomination for Julianne Moore.  She is a nominee tonight for best actress for her starring role in Still Alice.  Moore’s performance as the Columbia linguistics professor who is diagnosed with early Alzheimer’s disease is compelling and authentic— sensitively performed but never maudlin. Moore allows us to comprehend the panic her character experiences in moments of lucidity when she knows what will happen to her and realizes how quickly she is becoming impaired. Her character loses her professional identity first, then has to negotiate changing roles with her husband and children while becoming less than herself constantly. Moore is 54 and inhabits the life of Alice so completely that I will never forget this film.

Patricia  Yarberry Allen  

      

MERYL STREEP, NOMINATED FOR INTO THE WOODS


You would be hard-pressed to find a more enthusiastic fan of the immortal La Streep. But, it’s starting to feel like the Academy nominates her just for showing up. In Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods, Streep takes on a role played onstage by Bernadette Peters and later by Vanessa Williams. Her performance is fearless and yes, she does sing (don’t know why so much was made of this by the press – didn’t anyone see Mamma Mia?). But, I just don’t think it deserves an Oscar nod. There, I’ve said it. Sorry. I’ll go watch Sophie’s Choice now.

Alexandra MacAaron

 

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