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Live Blogging the 83rd Annual Academy Awards

February 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Looks like I called 17 out of 24 categories correctly. Not too bad. Better than last year. Oh well, till next year.

8:42- James Franco did better work on his Twitter feed tonight.

8:39 – You would think that these damn kids would have dressed up a bit. It’s the Oscars for Christ’s sake.

8:36 – How could the film had not have won Best Picture? For God’s sake,they used the speech in the film to cut the best picture montage together.

8:34 – This montage cut to The King’s Speech is actually pretty good.

8:32 – Nice consolation prize to The Social Network for mentioning the film’s that didn’t win Best Picture. I like how the crowd clapped loudly when Speilberg mentions the films that lost Best Picture.

8:21 – I bet Sandra Bullock hasn’t watched last year’s telecast when she won the award. Who would have thought that her tattoo crazed, Nazi loving husband, who was once married to a porno stat, would have cheated on her?

8:19 – Let’s applaud Sandra Bullock cause her crazy tattoo husband was fucking behind her back.

8:14 – Hey, just noticed that Aronofsky isn’t wearing that damn scarf around his neck. Guess he didn’t have a horrible neck surgery after all.

8:07 – So glad the honorary Oscar winners are finally shown some proper respect, unlike last year.

8:03 – Tom Hopper! Damn! You can tell he really wanted it. The film was good, but Fincher directed the hell out of The Social Network.

7:53 – No clapping at the In Memoriam segment. How will we know who to care about?

7:46 – Jennifer Hudson looks hot after losing all that weight. That is all I can muster up to type.

7:45 – The montage of dead people  and the Lena Horn tribute hasn’t been shown yet. This is going to go another hour.

7:35 – The visual effect guys forgot to thank Nolan. Thats a rule.

7:30 – The Ghost of Bob Hope!

7:27 – Here is the best Oscar host. He looks a hell of a lot better following these two.

7:21 – Okay, no Banksy. Inside Job was pretty good as well. Yea! Throw those fucking financial executives in jail!!

7:21 – Joel Coen was just caught on camera looking for his cell phone.

7:16 – This Best Live Action short guy probably gave one of the more entertaining speeches of the night.

7:15 – Wow. Got both the short documentary and short live action categories correct.

7:13 – Not a sweep for The King’s Speech. The most I can see them winning is a total for 4.

7:06 – Best Song Nominees being performed, time to do something the fuck else.

6:59 – Collen Atwood wants to thank who ever the fuck put her all the way in the back.

6:58 – Academy Award winning The Wolfman. That phrase reeks of classiness.

6:53 – Franco has a strange smirk on his face. When he said he didn’t care if he hosted the worst Oscar ever, he wasn’t kidding.

6:51 – Inception wins the well deserved Sound awards. Leading the night with 3 awards.

6:43 – YES! The Social Network for score! A good warning sign for a Best Picture win? One could hope.

6:41 – Let’s hear John Williams’s music for the rest of the show.

6:32 – Batman! Best Supporting Beard.

6:25 – There’s the Charlie Sheen joke

6:19 – The mic’s right there in front of you.

6:16 – Classy speech by Aaron Sorkin.

6:13 – They cut away when Brolin and Bardem were dancing. Too gay for the Oscars?

6:06 – Justin Timberlake shouldn’t be allowed to speak unless Aaron Sorkin is writing his dialogue.

6:04 – It appears that there was no rehearsal before the show.

6:02 – Bill Maher – “Kirk Douglas died during that acceptance speech.”

5:59 – Yeah, let’s drop the F bomb, Melissa Leo.

5:57 – This will be the longest Oscars ever if Kirk Douglas keeps presenting all the awards. I’m all for it.

5:51- Great Kirk Douglas, now no one will know who won best supporting actress.

5:49 – Great start, I’m 0-2  in predictions before the first fucking commercial.

5:47 – Inception! Deakins loses again, I knew it would happen.

5:44 – First miss of the night, fucking Alice in Wonderland. Maybe King’s Speech won’t be a sweep after all.

5:43 – There is something to be said for hiring comics to host the Oscars.

5:42 – James Franco looks out of it. He clearly doesn’t give a shit.

5:41 – Let’s begin, please.

5:35 – This was funny when Billy Crystal did it in 1997.

5:31 – I really hope The Social Network ins for score. It’s really fucking amazing.

Coming at 5:30

83rd Annual Academy Awards Predictions

February 25, 2011 Leave a comment

This Academy Awards are this Sunday, and now is the time to make my predictions for who will win. This year is one of the most uncertain years to predict who will win. There are very few slam dunk categories to predict. My predictions are in bold.

Best Picture
Black Swan, Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin, Producers
The Fighter, David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg, Producers
Inception, Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan, Producers
The Kids Are All Right, Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray, Producers
The King’s Speech, Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, Producers
127 Hours, Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson, Producers
The Social Network, Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceàn Chaffin, Producers
Toy Story 3, Darla K. Anderson, Producer
True Grit Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers
Winter’s Bone, Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin, Producers

I think The Social Network is the movies of the year, and it deserves to win, but deserves got nothing to do with it. The Social Network seemed like the film to win it until all the Guilds awards went to The King’s Speech. I still think The Social Network could win, but The King’s Speech is the type of film that the Academy loves.

Directing
Black Swan, Darren Aronofsky
The Fighter, David O. Russell
The King’s Speech, Tom Hooper
The Social Network, David Fincher
True Grit, Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

I think this year is where Picture and Director will split. I would have went with Tom Hooper, had he won the BAFTA for Best Director, but Fincher took it. I think the Academy will want to reward The Social Network with something and that film above all, was masterfully visualized for the screen by its director.

Actor in a Leading Role
Javier Bardem in Biutiful
Jeff Bridges in True Grit
Jesse Eisenberg in The Social Network
Colin Firth in The King’s Speech
James Franco in 127 Hours

This is one of the few easy categories to predict. Firth was nominated last year for A Single Man, and he will get it because he didn’t get it last year.

Actor in a Supporting Role
Christian Bale in The Fighter
John Hawkes in Winter’s Bone
Jeremy Renner in The Town
Mark Ruffalo in The Kids Are All Right
Geoffrey Rush in The King’s Speech

Bale has won all the major awards before the Oscar, and he gives the kind of showy performance that the Oscars love. Rush could pull up an upset if The King’s Speech sweeps all the awards on Oscar night.

Actress in a Leading Role
Annette Bening in The Kids Are All Right
Nicole Kidman in Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence in Winter’s Bone
Natalie Portman in Black Swan
Michelle Williams in Blue Valentine

This is a race between Portman and Bening. Bening is a veteran who has been nominated before, but Best Actress tends to go to the young hot star.

Actress in a Supporting Role
Amy Adams in The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter in The King’s Speech
Melissa Leo in The Fighter
Hailee Steinfeld in True Grit
Jacki Weaver in Animal Kingdom

This is the toughest of the main categories to predict. I’m going with Leo even though she seemed to piss off some people when she took out her own ads promoting her to the award. Maybe Steinfeld could win or Carter could ride in on The King’s Speech wave. I’ll play it simple and predict that her own ads

Animated Feature Film
How to Train Your Dragon Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois
The Illusionist Sylvain Chomet
Toy Story 3 Lee Unkrich

This is one of those easy categories to call. Done deal.

Art Direction
Alice in Wonderland, Robert Stromberg (Art Direction) and Karen O’Hara (Set Decoration
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, Stuart Craig (Art Direction) and Stephenie McMillan (Set Decoration)
Inception, Guy Hendrix Dyas (Art Direction) and Larry Dias and Doug Mowat (Set Decoration)
The King’s Speech, Eve Stewart (Art Direction) and Judy Farr (Set Decoration)
True Grit, Jess Gonchor (Art Direction) and Nancy Haigh (Set Decoration)

I’m going to go out on a limb and say that The King’s Speech will win some of these technical categories because The Academy will love the film and just be lazy and vote for it here. I think Inception deserves to win, and it could, but I’ll just go with The King’s Speech.

Cinematography
Black Swan, Matthew Libatique
Inception, Wally Pfister
The King’s Speech, Danny Cohen
The Social Network, Jeff Cronenweth
True Grit, Roger Deakins

Deakins has been nominated 9 times and has never won, I think this is his time. True Grit has to win something and It’s going his way. I wouldn’t be surprised if Deakins continues his losing streak, he did lose the Cinematographer’s Guild award to Inception.

Costume Design
Alice in Wonderland, Colleen Atwood
I Am Love, Antonella Cannarozzi
The King’s Speech, Jenny Beavan
The Tempest, Sandy Powell
True Grit, Mary Zophres

I think people will vote for The King’s Speech because they like the film and will just vote for it here. Alice in Wonderland could win here, but I’m betting on the fact that most Oscar voters are lazy and just go with the film they liked.

Documentary (Feature)
Exit through the Gift Shop, Banksy and Jaimie D’Cruz
Gasland, Josh Fox and Trish Adlesic
Inside Job, Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
Restrepo, Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger
Waste Land, Lucy Walker and Angus Aynsley

Here is another one of those tough categories to call. It could really go with any of the five. I know that predicting Exit through the Gift Shop is a risky call, but here is my reasoning. In order to vote for Best Documentary, you have to prove that you have seen all five films. I’m betting that the voters who do see the Banksy film will really fall for it and think it’s the best among the five. I might have too much faith in the Academy, but I’ll go out on a limb in this category.

Documentary (Short Subject)
Killing in the Name
Poster Girl
Strangers No More
Sun Come Up
The Warriors of Qiugang

Like almost everyone else, I haven’t seen any of these films. I’m going with the documentary about an Israeli school for refugees.

Film Editing
Black Swan, Andrew Weisblum
The Fighter, Pamela Martin
The King’s Speech, Tariq Anwar
127 Hours, Jon Harris
The Social Network, Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter

The Social Network is so masterfully edited it has to win. The film did win the Editor’s Guild award, so this only confirms my prediction.

Foreign Language Film
Biutiful, Mexico
Dogtooth, Greece
In a Better World, Denmark
Incendies, Canada
Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi), Algeria

This is always a tough category to predict. Dogtooth is too weird and Biutiful might win because among the five, it’s the most well-known. I’m going to give it to In a Better World, because it seems the most friendly among the five.

Makeup
Barney’s Version, Adrien Morot
The Way Back, Edouard F. Henriques, Gregory Funk and Yolanda Toussieng
The Wolfman, Rick Baker and Dave Elsey

The Wolfman had the most showy makeup among the three, so it’s going to win.

Music (Original Score)
How to Train Your Dragon, John Powell
Inception, Hans Zimmer
The King’s Speech, Alexandre Desplat
127 Hours, A.R. Rahman
The Social Network, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

The Social Network’s unique and fascinating score deserves to win, but I think it may be too modern for the Academy’s old, traditional taste.

Music (Original Song)
Coming Home from Country Strong, Music and Lyric by Tom Douglas, Troy Verges and Hillary Lindsey
I See the Light from Tangled, Music by Alan Menken Lyric by Glenn Slater
If I Rise from 127 Hours, Music by A.R. Rahman Lyric by Dido and Rollo Armstrong
We Belong Together from Toy Story 3, Music and Lyric by Randy Newman

I don’t really have any clue about who will win, but most of the people who track the Oscars are giving it to Toy Story 3, so I’ll agree with them.

Short Film (Animated)
Day & Night, Teddy Newton
The Gruffalo, Jakob Schuh and Max Lang
Let’s Pollute, Geefwee Boedoe
The Lost Thing, Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann
Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary) Bastien Dubois

Day & Night is the most well-known of the animated shorts because it played in front of Toy Story 3.

Short Film (Live Action)
The Confession, Tanel Toom
The Crush, Michael Creagh
God of Love, Luke Matheny
Na Wewe, Ivan Goldschmidt
Wish 143, Ian Barnes and Samantha Waite

Most Oscar pundits are picking God of Love. Categories like this are never easy to predict.

Sound Editing
Inception, Richard King
Toy Story 3, Tom Myers and Michael Silvers
Tron:Legacy, Gwendolyn Yates
True Grit, Skip Lievsay and Craig Berkey
Unstoppable, Mark P. Stoeckinger

My theory is that Inception has to win something and most of those wins will be in the technical categories.

Sound Mixing
Inception, Lora Hirschberg, Gary A. Rizzo and Ed Novick
The King’s Speech, Paul Hamblin, Martin Jensen and John Midgley
Salt, Jeffrey J. Haboush, Greg P. Russell, Scott Millan and William Sarokin
The Social Network, Ren Klyce, David Parker, Michael Semanick and Mark Weingarten
True Grit, Skip Lievsay, Craig Berkey, Greg Orloff and Peter F. Kurland

I’ll give it to Inception. I would love if The Social Network won. True Grit might pull out a win here.

Visual Effects
Alice in Wonderland, Ken Ralston, David Schaub, Carey Villegas and Sean Phillips
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, Tim Burke, John Richardson, Christian Manz and Nicolas Aithadi
Hereafter, Michael Owens, Bryan Grill, Stephan Trojanski and Joe Farrell
Inception, Paul Franklin, Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb
Iron Man 2, Janek Sirrs, Ben Snow, Ged Wright and Daniel Sudick

The Academy will go with the smart blockbuster here, Inception.

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)
127 Hours, Screenplay by Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy
The Social Network, Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin
Toy Story 3, Screenplay by Michael Arndt; Story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich
True Grit, Written for the screen by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
Winter’s Bone, Adapted for the screen by Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini

This is one of those easy categories to call. Sorkin’s screenplay is terrific and deserves to win.

Writing (Original Screenplay)
Another Year, Written by Mike Leigh
The Fighter, Screenplay by Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson; Story by Keith Dorrington & Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson
Inception, Written by Christopher Nolan
The Kids Are All Right, Written by Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg
The King’s Speech, Screenplay by David Seidler

Seidler gets it for King’s Speech. No contest.

Oscar Nominations Post Mortem

January 25, 2011 Leave a comment

The nominations for the 83rd Annual Academy Awards were announced this morning and The King’s Speech was the big leader in terms of nominations with 12. True Grit followed with 10 and The Social Network and Inception each scored 8 nominations. I’m going to go down each category and bitch or rave about the nominees.

Best Motion Picture of the Year
Black Swan
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids are All Right
The King’s Speech
The Social Network
127 Hours
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter’s Bone

I thought The Town would make it in, but it wasn’t as strong as I once thought. It’s a real close race between The King’s Speech and The Social Network. Everyone, including myself, thought The Social Network had the momentum, but The King’s Speech won the Producers Guild Award, so it halted The Social Network’s momentum. I’m still going to call it or The Social Network, but things could change as we get closer to Oscar time.

Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Annette Bening (The Kids are All Right)
Nicole Kidman (Rabbit Hole)
Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone)
Natalie Portman (Black Swan)
Michelle Williams (Blue Valentine)

This is a race between Portman and Bening, but I’d have to give the edge to Portman. Bening will continue to get nominated and lose to younger actresses. I thought Steinfeld might make it in lead, but I was wrong. All five actresses nominated here are actually deserving, who would have thought that?

Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Javier Bardem (Biutiful)
Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network)
Colin Firth (The King’s Speech)
James Franco (127 Hours)
Jeff Bridges (True Grit)

This is an easy Colin Firth victory. Haven’t seen Bardem, but heard his performance was great.

Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Christian Bale (The Fighter)
John Hawkes (Winter’s Bone)
Jeremy Renner (The Town)
Mark Ruffalo (The Kids are All Right)
Geoffrey Rush (The King’s Speech)

This was one of only two categories that I accurately predicted. Great to see Hawkes get in. Andrew Garfield was too young and the Academy wasn’t going to nominate him.

Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Amy Adams (The Fighter)
Helena Bonham Carter (The King’s Speech)
Melissa Leo (The Fighter)
Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit)
Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom)

Weaver deserves to win and I was glad she didn’t get shut out by the Black Swan actresses. Everyone is betting on Leo, but I could see Steinfeld pulling an upset here. True Grit got a surprising 10 nominations and they may have to give it some award.

Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
How to Train Your Dragon
The Illusionist
Toy Story 3

Toy Story 3 will win. No contest.

Best Documentary Short Subject
Killing in the Name
Poster Girl
Strangers No More
Sun Come Up
The Warriors of Qiugang

Haven’t seen any of these films, and I probably won’t. Where does one go to see the Documentary short films?

Best Short Film (Animated)
Day & Night Teddy Newton
The Gruffalo Jakob Schuh and Max Lang
Let’s Pollute Geefwee Boedoe
The Lost Thing Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann
Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary) Bastien Dubois

I only saw Day & Night and that was because it played in front of Toy Story 3. Again, where does one go to see these films?

Best Short Film (Live Action)
The Confession Tanel Toom
The Crush Michael Creagh
God of Love Luke Matheny
Na Wewe Ivan Goldschmidt
Wish 143 Ian Barnes and Samantha Waite

Don’t know where the fuck I would see these films.

Achievement in Art Direction
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1
Inception
The King’s Speech
True Grit

I read a lot of sites saying that Alice in Wonderland will win. I have no idea, but I’ll go with The King’s Speech because it scored 12 nominations which shows that a lot of people in The Academy love the film.

Achievement in Cinematography
Black Swan (Matthew Libatique)
Inception (Wally Pfister)
The King’s Speech (Danny Cohen)
The Social Network (Jeff Cronenweth)
True Grit (Roger Deakins)

The True Grit cinematography was beautiful and very Westerney. Deakins has been nominated many times and hasn’t won yet. I will give a special shout out to Matthew Libatique, an alumni from my college, Cal State Fullerton.

Achievement in Costume Design
Alice in Wonderland (Colleen Atwood)
I Am Love (Antonella Cannarozzi)
The King’s Speech (Jenny Beaven)
The Tempest (Sandy Powell)
True Grit (Mary Zophres)

Glad to see I Am Love get in. I’ll just go with King’s Speech here, because.

Achievement in Directing
Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan)
David O. Russell (The Fighter)
Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech)
David Fincher (The Social Network)
Joel and Ethan Coen (True Grit)

What does Chris Nolan have to do to get a directing nomination? I was really surprised to see Nolan’s name off the list. The directing branch at The Academy must not really respect fantasy/sci-fi type films. This is really disappointing. The man has three Director Guild Nominations and zero directing Oscar nominations. I guess Nolan will have to direct a Holocaust film to get nominated for Best Director.

Best Documentary Feature
Exit through the Gift Shop Banksy, director (Paranoid Pictures)
Gasland Josh Fox, director (Gasland Productions, LLC)
Inside Job Charles Ferguson, director (Representational Pictures)
Restrepo Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger, directors (Outpost Films)
Waste Land Lucy Walker, director (Almega Projects)

I was really glad to see Exit Through the Gift Shop make it in. I’m not sure it will win though. Inside Job seems like the safer choice.

Achievement in Makeup
Barney’s Version
The Way Back
The Wolfman

Haven’t seen any of these films. The Wolfman. I guess.

Achievement in Film Editing
Black Swan (Andrew Weisblum)
The Fighter (Pamela Martin)
The King’s Speech (Tariq Anwar)
127 Hours (Jon Harris)
The Social Network (Kirk Baxter and Angus Wall)

The Social Network should win here. I do fear that The King’s Speech might sweep and could pick up this award.

Best Foreign Language Film of the Year
Biutiful (Mexico)
Dogtooth (Greece)
In a Better World (Denmark)
Incendies (Canada)
Hors la Loi (Algeria)

I heard Dogtooth is really out there and I’m excited to see it tomorrow. I don’t have a fucking clue who will win here. I’ll say In a Better World will win because it won the Golden Globe.

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score)
How to Train Your Dragon (John Powell)
Inception (Hans Zimmer)
The King’s Speech (Alexandre Desplat)
127 Hours (A.R. Rahman)
The Social Network (Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross)

The Social Network is this year’s most original and interesting score. It could be too unique for The Academy. I wouldn’t be upset if Hans Zimmer’s score won.

Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song)
“Coming Home” from Country Strong Music and Lyric by Tom Douglas, Troy Verges and Hillary Lindsey
“I See the Light” from Tangled Music and Lyric by Alan Menken Lyric by Glenn Slater
“If I Rise” from 127 Hours Music by A.R. Rahman Lyric by Dido and Rollo Armstrong
“We Belong Together” from Toy Story 3 Music and Lyric by Randy Newman

Don’t give a shit.

Achievement in Sound Editing
Inception
Toy Story 3
TRON: Legacy
True Grit
Unstoppable

I’ll say Inception wins. The film will likely do really well in the technical categories.

Achievement in Sound Mixing
Inception
The King’s Speech
Salt
The Social Network
True Grit

I’ll say Inception again.

Achievement in Visual Effects
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1
Hereafter
Inception
Iron Man 2

If there is any justice Inception will win.

Adapted Screenplay
127 Hours (Simon Beaufoy and Danny Boyle)
The Social Network (Aaron Sorkin)
Toy Story 3 (Michael Arndt, story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich)
True Grit (Joel Coen and Ethan Coen)
Winter’s Bone (Debra Granik and Anne Rossellini)

Sorkin is taking this in a cake walk.

Original Screenplay
Another Year (Mike Leigh)
The Fighter (Paul Attanasio, Lewis Colich, Eric Johnson, Scott Silverand Paul Tamasy)
Inception (Christopher Nolan)
The Kids are All Right (Stuart Blumberg and Lisa Cholodenko)
The King’s Speech (David Seidler)

I wish Inception would win, but The King’s Speech will win.

Oscar Nomination Predictions

January 24, 2011 Leave a comment

The nominations for the 83rd Annual Academy Awards will be announced tomorrow morning at 5:38 am pacific time.

I’m going to go out on a limb and predict what and who will get nominated in the 8 major categories. We already know most of the films and actors that will get nominated, so the key will be to predict what the surprises will be tomorrow morning. Tomorrow I will have an in-depth analysis of the nominations after they are announced.

BEST PICTURE

Black Swan
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids Are All Right
The King’s Speech
The Social Network
The Town
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter’s Bone

I’m not totally confident that Winter’s Bone will make it in the final ten. 127 Hours could defiantly make it there instead of Winter’s Bone.

BEST DIRECTOR

Darren Aronofsky, Black Swan
David O. Russell, The Fighter
Christopher Nolan, Inception
Tom Hooper, The King’s Speech
David Fincher, The Social Network

Joel & Ethan Coen might make it in here instead of Russell, but The Fighter has demonstrated real strength in the run up nominations.

BEST ACTOR

Jeff Bridges, True Grit
Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network
Colin Firth, The King’s Speech
James Franco, 127 Hours
Ryan Gosling, Blue Valentine

The 5th slot is a real toss up. Robert Duvall for Get Low or Javier Bardem for Biutiful could replace Gosling.

BEST ACTRESS

Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
Nicole Kidman, Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence, Winter’s Bone
Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit

This is another case where the 5th slot is a toss-up. Even though Paramount is campaigning for Steinfeld in the Best Supporting Actress category, The Academy has the right to put her in any group they want. Steinfeld really is the lead performance in the film and I think The Academy will put her in it as a result. Michelle Williams for Blue Valentine or Lesley Manville for Another Year could slip in the 5th slot. An even bigger surprise would be Julianne Moore for The Kids Are All Right making it in.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

Christian Bale, The Fighter
John Hawkes, Winter’s Bone
Jeremy Renner, The Town
Mark Ruffalo, The Kids Are All Right
Geoffrey Rush, The King’s Speech

I’m going to go out on a limb and say Hawkes makes it in due to his SAG nomination in this category. I could see Andrew Garfield making it in on The Social Network’s coat tails. The supporting categories are where we usually see surprise nominations and I think Hawkes might be that surprise.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Amy Adams, The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter, The King’s Speech
Mila Kunis, Black Swan
Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom

I really hope Weaver makes it in for Animal Kingdom, but I could see her getting shut out if Steinfeld gets nominated in the supporting category. Barbara Hershey from Black Swan might replace Kunis in this category.

BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY

Black Swan
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids Are All Right
The King’s Speech

BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY

127 Hours
The Social Network
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter’s Bone

The Town could make it in here since it got a WGA nomination.

The National Board of Review Likes The Social Network

December 2, 2010 Leave a comment

“The Social Network” was the big winner at The National Board of Review today. It won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Adapted Screenplay.

The National Board of Review is seen as the “official” start of awards season. The group usually faces criticism because it is made up of people who are not critics. Last year’s winner for Best Picture was “Up in the Air,” but the film fizzled at the Oscars, losing Best Picture to “The Hurt Locker.” In 2007 and 2008, the group awarded Best Picture to “No Country for Old Men” and “Slumdog Millionaire,” both films won the top Oscar.

I’m glad that “The Social Network” won big and I think this could possibly be the start of a string of victories. The New York and Los Angeles film critics announce their award winners on Sunday, and I think there is a strong possibility that “The Social Network” could win Best Picture at both those critics’ groups. I’m still skeptical of calling “The Social Network” the front runner for the Oscars. It’s main competition is “The King’s Speech,” which got shut out of by the Board.

Lesley Manville winning Best Actress for Mike Leigh’s “Another Year” was a complete surprise. Presumed front runners Natalie Portman and Annette Bening were expected to win. I haven’t seen “Another Year,” but I suspect that Portman and Bening remain the front runners for the Best Actress Oscar.

I was pleasantly surprised to see Christian Bale win Best Supporting Actor for “The Fighter” and Jacki Weaver win Best Supporting Actress for “Animal Kingdom.” Both gave great performances in their respected film and deserved the victory. I’m only surprised because sometimes great work is overlooked.

Speaking of overlooked, “Black Swan,” “The Kids Are All Right,” and “127 Hours,” didn’t receive a single notice from The National Board of Review.

Here is a full list of all the winners:

Best Film: “The Social Network”
Best Director: David Fincher, “The Social Network”
Best Actor: Jesse Eisenberg, “The Social Network”
Best Actress: Lesley Manville, “Another Year”
Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale, “The Fighter”
Best Supporting Actress: Jacki Weaver, “Animal Kingdom”
Best Foreign Film: “Of Gods and Men”
Best Documentary: “Waiting For Superman”
Best Animated Feature: “Toy Story 3″
Best Ensemble Cast: “The Town”
Breakthrough Performance: Jennifer Lawrence, “Winter’s Bone”
Spotlight Award for Best Directorial Debut: Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington, “Restrepo”
Best Original Screenplay: Chris Sparling, “Buried”
Best Adapted Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, “The Social Network”
Special Filmmaking Achievement Award: Sofia Coppola, for for writing, directing, and producing “Somewhere”
William K. Everson Film History Award: Leonard Maltin
NBR Freedom of Expression: “Fair Game,” “Conviction,” “Howl”
Top Ten Films (In alphabetical order): “Another Year,” “The Fighter,” “Hereafter,” “Inception,” “The King’s Speech,” “Shutter Island,” “The Town,” “Toy Story 3,” “True Grit,” “Winter’s Bone”
Top Ten Independent Films (In alphabetical order): “Animal Kingdom,” “Buried,” “Fish Tank,” “The Ghost Writer,” “Greenberg,” “Let Me In,” “Monsters,” “Please Give,” “Somewhere,” “Youth in Revolt”
Top Five Foreign Films (In alphabetical order): “I Am Love,” “Incendies,” “Life, Above All,” “Soul Kitchen,” “White Material”
Top Five Documentary Films (In alphabetical order): “A Film Unfinished,” “Inside Job,” “Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work,” “Restrepo,” “The Tillman Story”

Oscar Post-Mortem

March 8, 2010 2 comments

The Hurt Locker was the big winner of the night, taking in 6 Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director. Kathryn Bigelow made history by becoming the first female director to win the Best Director trophy. The film is great, and deserving of all awards it received. Avatar had to settle for 3 awards, leaving James Cameron to cry on his billions of dollars.

There were no surprises when it came to the acting winners. Bridges won Best Actor, Mo’Nique took home Best Supporting Actress. Unfortunately Sandra Bullock won Best Actress for the horrible film The Blind Side. I will say that her speech was better than her actual performance in the film. I’m glad that Christoph Waltz won Best Supporting Actor for his amazing performance, but I’m sad that Inglourious Basterds lost out in every other category it was nominated in.

Speaking of losers, Jason Reitman and Sheldon Turner lost Best Adapted Screenplay to Precious. That was the only real surprise of the night. I have to say I’m kind of glad Reitman lost. This lost should humble him. Perhaps the controversy surrounding him trying to deny Turner script credit hurt the film, which ended up winning nothing.

The producers of the 82nd Annual Academy Awards, Adam Shankman and Bill Mechanic did a horrible job at producing this year’s broadcast, which was only saved by the humor of Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin. Martin and Baldwin have great chemistry and they were effective in adding humor in-between the categories. Love the shot of the two of them in Snuggies and the Paranormal Activity spoof. The two were great at playing off each other.

The telecast felt long, tedious and lacked the fun of last year’s ceremony. Shankman and Mechanic should never be allowed back. Their horrible additions to the show included having Neil Patrick Harris open the show with a terrible song and dance number that brought the show to a halt.  I’m sick of him; we get it, he’s gay, funny, can sing and dance, we don’t need to see him on every fucking awards show. The other terrible idea was to have dancers interpret the best score nominees.

The tribute to John Hughes was another bonehead idea from the shows producers. John Hughes didn’t deserve any special memorial tribute. Billy Wilder, Marlon Brando, Paul Newman, Ingmar Bergman, and other real greats of cinema never got their own special tribute when they passed. To add insult to injury, the three honorary Oscar winners, Lauren Bacall, Gordon Willis, and Roger Corman didn’t get honored on the broadcast. Bacall and Corman weren’t even up on the stage when they were acknowledged during the ceremony. The crowd awkwardly didn’t know where to look to acknowledge them.

I also have to blame the director of the night’s broadcast, Hamish Hamilton. There were terrible cuts to people who looked bored shitless. Clooney looked like he wanted to get the hell out of there. There were too many shots of empty seats, and jerky camera movements. For an example of how horrible the direction was, when Kathryn Bigelow wins a historic Oscar for Best Director, the camera cuts away to a wide shot before we can see her interact with her ex-husband, James Cameron, who just lost to his ex-wife and was sitting right behind her. We wanted to see Cameron put on a fake smile and pretend to be happy for her!

Last year’s broadcast had the great idea of having the acting nominees introduced by a past winner of the category. This year they kept the general idea, but only dragged it out. First they showed clips from each nominees film, then they had friends of the nominees come out and praise each of them and then last year’s acting winner came out and announced the winner. This was overkill. It dragged on way too long.

The entire ceremony had an awkward feeling to it. It didn’t have the fun, or excitement of last year’s broadcast, which was produced by Bill Condon and Larry Mark. What the fuck were they thinking bringing out Tyler Perry to present Best Editing? Many of the presenters kept screwing up their simple banter. Other terrible moments came when the orchestra would play people off early, like Louie Psihoyos, the director of The Cove.

I’m a fan of the Oscars, and if I found the ceremony awful, I can only imagine how the rest of America was feeling.

Here is the list of the night’s winners:

  • Best Picture: “The Hurt Locker” Kathryn Bigelow, Mark Boal, Nicolas Chartier, Greg Shapiro
  • Best Director: “The Hurt Locker” Kathryn Bigelow
  • Best Actor: Jeff Bridges in “Crazy Heart”
  • Best Actress: Sandra Bullock in “The Blind Side”
  • Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz in “Inglourious Basterds”
  • Best Supporting Actress: Mo’Nique in “Precious”
  • Best Original Screenplay: “The Hurt Locker” Written by Mark Boal
  • Best Adapted Screenplay: “Precious” Screenplay by Geoffrey Fletcher
  • Best Foreign Language: “The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto de Sus Ojos)” Argentina
  • Best Animated Film: “Up” Pete Docter
  • Best Documentary: “The Cove” Louie Psihoyos and Fisher Stevens
  • Best Cinematography: “Avatar” Mauro Fiore
  • Best Art Direction: Avatar” Rick Carter, Robert Stromberg, Kim Sinclair
  • Best Costumes: “The Young Victoria” Sandy Powell
  • Best Editing: “The Hurt Locker” Bob Murawski and Chris Innis
  • Best Score: “Up” Michael Giacchino
  • Best Song: The Weary Kind”(Crazy Heart) Ryan Bingham and T Bone Burnett
  • Best Makeup: “Star Trek” Barney Burman, Mindy Hall and Joel Harlow
  • Best Visual Effects: “Avatar” Joe Letteri, Stephen Rosenbaum, Richard Baneham, Andrew R. Jones
  • Best Sound Editing: “The Hurt Locker” Paul N.J. Ottosson
  • Best Sound Mixing: “The Hurt Locker” Paul N.J. Ottosson and Ray Beckett
  • Best Animated Short: “Logorama” Nicolas Schmerkin
  • Best Live Action Short: “The New Tenants” Joachim Back and Tivi Magnusson
  • Best Documentary Short: “Music by Prudence” Roger Ross Williams and Elinor Burkett

Live Blogging 82nd Annual Academy Awards

Look forward to insightful, humorous comments from me.

5:32 – Neil Patrick Harris? Who thought this was a good idea?

5:37 – The opening was terrible. Good line about that Damn Helen Mirren

5:40 – Good Avatar jokes. Sam Worthington didn’t look amused.

5:41 – Cut to Ethan Coen when it comes to Basterds joke. They had to find a Jew quickly.

5:46 – Here comes Waltz Oscar.

5:50 – Kind white lady saves poor black kid…The Blind Side.

5:58 – A lamp is behind Ed Asner? Wtf were the producers thinking?

6:01 – Curse Miley Cyrus to Hell for screwing  her Best Song banter! I don’t care if you’re nervous!

6:11 – Shot of Waltz looking at his Oscar. Here comes screenplay! Who will win Basterds or The Hurt Locker?!

6:15 – Called The Hurt Locker winning! Pissed Tarantino lost though.

6:18 – Molly Ringwald looks scared shitless. I’m sorry, but John Hughes does not deserve a special tribute segment. Just include him in the death montage.

6:22 -This Huges tribute with all the actors coming out on stage, was awkwardly handled. I could hear Broderick talking to Culkin as they left the stage. They cut to the Twilight guy, who has probably never seen a John Hughes movie.

6:31 – Whoa! Wallace and Gromit lost!

6:34 – Who this lady on stage. WTF?! A bit rude of her to come up on stage and interrupt the guy in the middle of his speech. A Kanye West moment.

6:37 – Missed best documentary short! DAMN!

6:38 – The Ben Stiller/Avatar bit was hit and miss. Admire Stiller’s balls for going up on stage like that.

6:44 – How did Michael Stuhlbarg get in the audience?

6:50 – Whoa upset! Precious wins! Jason Reitman just has his father’s millions of dollars to live on now.

6:54 –  They should at least have Bacall and Corman up on stage.  They deserve a tribute, not fucking John Huges.

6:59 – Everyone stands for Mo’Nique. I wonder if she shaved her legs tonight?

7:00 – Sam Jackson did a strange eye roll when the camera cut to him after Mo’Nique’s win.

7:07 – The first thing I said when I saw Avatar, was that it was going to win Best Art Direction.

7:12 – African Charlize Theron showcasing film about a poor African American, Precious.

7:17 – Funny Martin/Baldwin Paranormal Activity spoof. Better than the actual film.

7:19 – Why a horror tribute? Is this the Academy commenting on tonight’s broadcast? Appropriate that Twilight New Moon is included in the horror tribute.

7:27 – Hurt Locker wins both sound awards over Avatar, it seems pretty clear now that it will win Best Picture tonight.

7:35 – Best Cinematography goes to Avatar and so continues my piss poor prediction rate.

7:45 – Sam Worthing puts on his glasses in order to look more intelligent. Was he chewing gum as well?

7:48 – Let’s dance while we dispose of a bomb!

7:51- So instead of 5 best song performances, we get 5 unnecessary dance numbers.

8:02 – The Cove should win best documentary. I can’t stand another hit against my predictions.

8:05 – Bull crap. They should at least let the other Cove guy go on.

8:06 – Why the fuck are they letting Tyler Perry present Best Editing. Horrible moment only saved by Martin and Baldwin appearing in Snuggies.

8:17 – Damn, lost another category. Some film from Argentina won Best Foreign film.

8:19 – Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin do a great job of delivering the humor in between the categories.

8:24 – Having other actors applaud this year’s nominees is a good idea in a broadcast devoid of any.

8:33 – The Dude wins. Nice speech, but too many thank you’s.

8:40 – What’s up with Whitaker’s De Niro Casino glasses?

8:46 – It seems like overkill to have Sean Penn come out to present Best Actress.

8:49 – BULLOCK!!!! NO!!!!!!!!!!!! The audience applauds mediocracy.

8:51-  Uh, oh here comes the tears.

8:52 -Streisand to present Best Director. Would by funny if Bigelow then lost.

8:56- Bigelow wins. Well deserved.

8:58 – We are finally at Best Picture. Like how Tom Hanks cuts to the chase…The Hurt Locker! Cameron just has his billions to fall back on.

9:03 – Horrible broadcast, terrible direction, but great hosts and for the most part, deserving winners.

15/24 on my picks. As horrible as The Blind Side.