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Saturday, March 06, 2010

My Oscar predictions

Cut and paste from my Facebook:

The Best Picture nominees:

Avatar
The Blind Side
District 9
An Education
The Hurt Locker
Inglourious Basterds
Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire
A Serious Man
Up
Up in the Air

First of all, here is how I would rank them:

1. District 9
2. An Education
3. The Hurt Locker
4. Up in the Air
5. Inglourious Basterds
6. Up
7. Avatar

huge drop in 8-9:
8. Precious
9. A Serious Man (hated this one)

I have not seen The Blind Side.

My prediction: The Hurt Locker

If the new ten-nominee rule is good for anything, it's the inclusion of two of my very favorite films from the past year, the apartheid (and post-colonial) allegory District 9 and the fabulous coming-of-age tale, An Education.
This year's race seems to be between the Smurf extravaganza and the war movie. I'm going with the latter.

Best Director:

Kathryn Bigelow – The Hurt Locker
James Cameron – Avatar
Lee Daniels – Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire
Jason Reitman – Up in the Air
Quentin Tarantino – Inglourious Basterds

My prediction: Bigelow

What the **** is Daniels doing in the category? (Sorry, I'll try to keep the Precious grousing to a minimum.)

Again, it's Bigelow vs. her ex, Cameron. If Avatar wins the big prize, I still think Bigelow will win best director.

Best Actor:

Jeff Bridges – Crazy Heart as Bad Blake
George Clooney – Up in the Air as Ryan Bingham
Colin Firth – A Single Man as George Falconer
Morgan Freeman – Invictus as Nelson Mandela
Jeremy Renner – The Hurt Locker as Sgt. William James

My prediction: Bridges

Bridges' performance is the only one I have not seen from this bunch. I loved the other four performances, even Clooney, an actor I think has always skated by on his good looks and not his acting talent. Firth is probably my personal choice, or Freeman, who successfully transcended impersonation. As I've said elsewhere, Renner's performance is successful because it could have devolved into a very stock characterization.

Best Actress:

Sandra Bullock – The Blind Side as Leigh Anne Tuohy
Helen Mirren – The Last Station as Sofya Tolstoy
Carey Mulligan – An Education as Jenny Miller
Gabourey Sidibe – Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire as Claireece "Precious" Jones
Meryl Streep – Julie & Julia as Julia Child

My prediction: Bullock

This category is traditionally the one for which I am least prepared--I've only seen three of the five. I really want to see The Last Station, not for Mirren or Plummer, but for my guy James McAvoy (and Giamatti), but it hasn't played here yet. Like I mentioned earlier, I haven't seen The Blind Side, but I predict Bullock. I didn't care for Julie and Julia at all, and well, as I said earlier, I'll keep my Precious complaints to a minimum. (Gabby was decent, I guess.) But if there were any justice in Oscarland, Mulligan would win. She won't, unfortunately.


Best Supporting Actor:

Matt Damon – Invictus as François Pienaar
Woody Harrelson – The Messenger as Capt. Tony Stone
Christopher Plummer – The Last Station as Leo Tolstoy
Stanley Tucci – The Lovely Bones as George Harvey
Christoph Waltz – Inglourious Basterds as Col. Hans Landa

My prediction: Waltz

Surprisingly, I have only seen two of these performances and I loved them both. Damon doesn't have a chance in hell, but Waltz seems like the safe bet. Amazing performance to boot.

Best Supporting Actress:

Penélope Cruz – Nine as Carla Albanese
Vera Farmiga – Up in the Air as Alex Goran
Maggie Gyllenhaal – Crazy Heart as Jean Craddock
Anna Kendrick – Up in the Air as Natalie Keener
Mo'Nique – Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire as Mary Lee Johnston

My prediction: Mo'Nique

I've seen three of these performances--the Up in the Air ladies and Mo'Nique. Like Waltz, I think Mo'Nique is a shoo-in at this point in the race, but I really hope I'm wrong. Vera Farmiga has been a favorite of mine since I saw her in this indie film Down to the Bone, so I'm rooting for her. Won't happen though. Sigh. As I said earlier, I haven't seen Crazy Heart, but I've always liked Gyllenhaal. Cruz is the "WTF?" of this category.


Best Original Screenplay:
The Hurt Locker – Mark Boal
Inglourious Basterds – Quentin Tarantino
The Messenger – Alessandro Camon and Oren Moverman
A Serious Man – Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
Up – Tom McCarthy, Bob Peterson and Pete Docter

My prediction: The Hurt Locker – Mark Boal

I'd be happy with a win for either Tarantino or Boal. Tarantino is perhaps slightly more deserving.


Best Adapted Screenplay:
District 9 – Neill Blomkamp and Terri Tatchell from Alive in Joburg by Blomkamp
An Education – Nick Hornby from An Education by Lynn Barber
In the Loop – Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci and Tony Roche from The Thick of It created by Iannucci
Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire – Geoffrey Fletcher from Push by Sapphire
Up in the Air – Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner from Up in the Air by Walter Kirn

My prediction: Up in the Air – Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner from Up in the Air by Walter Kirn

Again--broken record--Precious's nomination sticks out here, but more so because the other four are fantastic. In the Loop's screenplay is especially brilliant.

Best Animated Feature
Coraline – Henry Selick
Fantastic Mr. Fox – Wes Anderson
The Princess and the Frog – Ron Clements and John Musker
The Secret of Kells – Tomm Moore
Up – Pete Docter

My prediction: Up - Pete Docter

Best Foreign Language Film
Ajami (Israel) in Arabic and Hebrew – Scandar Copti and Yaron Shani
El Secreto de Sus Ojos (Argentina) in Spanish – Juan José Campanella
The Milk of Sorrow (Peru) in Spanish and Quechua – Claudia Llosa
Un Prophète (France) in French, Corsican and Arabic – Jacques Audiard
The White Ribbon (Germany) in German – Michael Haneke

My prediction:The White Ribbon (Germany) in German – Michael Haneke
Like Best Picture, this seems to be a two-horse race between the Haneke and Audiard films. Note: This category was one of the few I didn't correctly call last year, so maybe one of those other three I've never heard of will win. :) (On a linguistic note: Corsican?!?)

Best Documentary Feature
Burma VJ – Anders Østergaard and Lise Lense-Møller
The Cove – Louie Psihoyos and Fisher Stevens
Food, Inc. – Robert Kenner and Elise Pearlstein
The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers – Judith Ehrlichand Rick Goldsmith
Which Way Home – Rebecca Cammisa

My prediction: The Cove – Louie Psihoyos and Fisher Stevens

Best Documentary Short
China’s Unnatural Disaster: The Tears of Sichuan Province – Jon Alpert andMatthew O'Neill
The Last Campaign of Governor Booth Gardner – Daniel Junge and Henry Ansbacher
The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant – Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert
Music by Prudence – Roger Ross Williams and Elinor Burkett
Rabbit à la Berlin – Bartosz Konopka and Anna Wydra

My prediction: China’s Unnatural Disaster: The Tears of Sichuan Province – Jon Alpert andMatthew O'Neill

Best Live Action Short
The Door – Juanita Wilson and James Flynn
Instead of Abracadabra – Patrik Eklund and Mathias Fjellström
Kavi – Gregg Helvey
Miracle Fish – Luke Doolan and Drew Bailey
The New Tenants – Joachim Back and Tivi Magnusson

My prediction: The Door – Juanita Wilson and James Flynn

Best Animated Short
French Roast – Fabrice O. Joubert
Granny O'Grimm's Sleeping Beauty – Nicky Phelan and Darragh O’Connell
The Lady and the Reaper – Javier Recio Gracia
Logorama – Nicolas Schmerkin
A Matter of Loaf and Death – Nick Park

My prediction: A Matter of Loaf and Death – Nick Park

Best Original Score
Avatar – James Horner
Fantastic Mr. Fox – Alexandre Desplat
The Hurt Locker – Marco Beltrami and Buck Sanders
Sherlock Holmes – Hans Zimmer
Up – Michael Giacchino

My prediction: Up – Michael Giacchino

Best Original Song
"Almost There" from The Princess and the Frog – Randy Newman
"Down in New Orleans" from The Princess and the Frog – Randy Newman
"Loin de Paname" from Paris 36 – Reinhardt Wagner and Frank Thomas
"Take it All" from Nine – Maury Yeston
"The Weary Kind (Theme from Crazy Heart)" from Crazy Heart – Ryan Binghamand T-Bone Burnett

My prediction: "The Weary Kind (Theme from Crazy Heart)" from Crazy Heart – Ryan Binghamand T-Bone Burnett

Best Sound Editing
Avatar – Christopher Boyes and Gwendolyn Yates Whittle
The Hurt Locker – Paul N.J. Ottosson
Inglourious Basterds – Wylie Stateman
Star Trek – Mark Stoeckinger and Alan Rankin
Up – Michael Silvers and Tom Myers

My prediction: Avatar – Christopher Boyes and Gwendolyn Yates Whittle

Best Sound Mixing
Avatar – Christopher Boyes, Gary Summers, Andy Nelson and Tony Johnson
The Hurt Locker – Paul N.J. Ottosson and Ray Beckett
Inglourious Basterds – Michael Minkler, Tony Lamberti and Mark Ulano
Star Trek – Anna Behlmer, Andy Nelson and Peter J. Devlin
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen – Greg P. Russell, Gary Summers andGeoffrey Patterson

My prediction: Avatar – Christopher Boyes, Gary Summers, Andy Nelson and Tony Johnson

Best Art Direction
Avatar – Art Direction: Rick Carter and Robert Stromberg; Set Decoration: Kim Sinclair
The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus – Art Direction: Dave Warren and Anastasia Masaro; Set Decoration: Caroline Smith
Nine – Art Direction: John Myhre; Set Decoration: Gordon Sim
Sherlock Holmes – Art Direction: Sarah Greenwood; Set Decoration: Katie Spencer
The Young Victoria – Art Direction: Patrice Vermette; Set Decoration: Maggie Gray

My prediction: Avatar – Art Direction: Rick Carter and Robert Stromberg; Set Decoration: Kim Sinclair

Best Cinematography
Avatar – Mauro Fiore
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince – Bruno Delbonnel
The Hurt Locker – Barry Ackroyd
Inglourious Basterds – Robert Richardson
The White Ribbon – Christian Berger

My prediction:The Hurt Locker – Barry Ackroyd

Best Makeup
Il Divo – Aldo Signoretti and Vittorio Sodano
Star Trek – Barney Burman, Mindy Hall and Joel Harlow
The Young Victoria – Jon Henry Gordon and Jenny Shircore

My prediction: Star Trek – Barney Burman, Mindy Hall and Joel Harlow

Best Costume Design
Bright Star – Janet Patterson
Coco Before Chanel – Catherine Leterrier
The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus – Monique Prudhomme
Nine – Colleen Atwood
The Young Victoria – Sandy Powell

My prediction: The Young Victoria – Sandy Powell

Best Film Editing
Avatar – James Cameron, John Refoua and Stephen E. Rivkin
District 9 – Julian Clarke
The Hurt Locker – Chris Innis and Bob Murawski
Inglourious Basterds – Sally Menke
Precious: Based on the Novel "Push" by Sapphire – Joe Klotz

My prediction: The Hurt Locker – Chris Innis and Bob Murawski

Best Visual Effects
Avatar – Joe Letteri, Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham and Andrew R. Jones
District 9 – Dan Kaufman, Peter Muyzers, Robert Habros, and Matt Aitken
Star Trek – Roger Guyett, Russell Earl, Paul Kavanagh and Burt Dalton

My prediction: Avatar – Joe Letteri, Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham and Andrew R. Jones

1 Comments:

Blogger Yum-Yum said...

Is it okay if I just copy your picks? I recall you doing quite well in previous years. :)

"Smurf extravaganza"

Hee. I would have made their skin shocking pink.

I can't believe the host of Flavor of Love Girls: Charm School is about to win an Oscar.

Carey Mulligan is adorable. Just putting that out there.

"Down to the Bone"

Jason Reitman apparently cast Vera because of her work in this movie.

"Cruz is the "WTF?" of this category"

I read that Marion Cotillard is the female standout in that movie.

"Tarantino is perhaps slightly more deserving."

What happened to "Just say no to Tarantino"? ;)

7:32 PM  

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