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Sunday, February 24, 2008

AND THE OSCAR GOES TO...

UPDATES IN ITALICS

Ever since I lived in LA, I've had a certain affection for the Oscars. It's bigger than the Super Bowl down there, and the betting pools are just as competitive. So in honor of the ceremony later today, I thought I'd offer my predictions. I think it's pretty easy pickings this year, so it's much less likely that I'll be revealed as the complete poser that I am.
The votes are in, and I have, in fact, been revealed as a complete poser. Let's review my choices:

BEST PICTURE:
There Will be Blood
Oscar voters are old people who love movies with an epic sweep that "tell the story of America." This is that film. It will win big tonight.
It did not, in fact, win big. But I really do believe that this was the best film of the five nominated. But it's hard to get bent out of shape about the Cohens winning awards. They're quite good.

BEST DIRECTOR:
Paul Thomas Anderson, There Will be Blood
The Cohens are certainly in the running, but they've won before, and Anderson is proving himself a unique voice in American film. He'll get the statue.
The Cohens were in the running, and they ran away with this one. I'm 0 and 2 so far. Not good.

ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE:
Daniel Day-Lewis, There Will be Blood
Oscar voters love a showy performance, and this one is over the top. It's an amazing performance, too, and worthy of recognition. This one is a sure thing.
There we go. You didn't have to be all that bright to figure this one out. It really was a sure thing.

ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE:
Javier Bardem, No Country for Old Men
I want to vote for hometown hero Philip Seymour Hoffman in "Charlie Wilson's War." He's great in that movie, and in every other movie he's been in. But he's already won a "Best Actor" statue, and the Oscars tend to spread the love. And Bardem is absolutely terrifying in "No Country." I was frightened every second he was on the screen.
Yeah, I get another one right! I'm back to batting .500!

ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE:
Julie Christie, Away From Her
This is another one of those sure things. She's a great actress, the Academy wants to recognize her again while she's still around. And she plays a woman with a mental illness. Oscar voters love mental illness.
Who the hell is Marion Cotillard? I was positive I got this one right. I didn't see Ms. Cotillard's performance, so perhaps it's brilliant. Now I'm 2 and 3.

ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE:
Cate Blanchett, I'm Not There
When in doubt, go for the woman in drag (or the woman playing a prostitute... but there aren't any of those this year).
Tilda Swindon? Aww, come on! She was great in "Michael Clayton," but still... I didn't call it. I'm batting .250, and things are looking worse.

ANIMATED FEATURE:
Ratatouille
Persepolis is beautiful and moving and fun, but betting against a Pixar film is a losing game.
Nice. My safe bet paid off. I've won three and lost 4, that's not all that bad.

ART DIRECTION:
There Will be Blood
When in doubt, go with your "best picture" choice. Many lazy Oscar voters do, too.
My system is breaking down. "Sweeny Todd." 3-5 and I'm in some real trouble now.

FILM EDITING:
There Will be Blood
See "Art Direction."
The Borune Ultimatum. I didn't even give the blockbuster films a chance this year. My bad, 3-6.

COSTUME DESIGN:
Sweeny Todd
"There Will be Blood" is not nominated, so I'm taking "Sweeny Todd" because Tim Burton's people usually do a good job in that department.
Elizabeth: The Golden Age. This is bad, this is really bad. 3-7.

CINEMATOGRAPHY:
Atonement
I normally use the "best picture" coattails rule, but "Atonement" has a 5 minute tracking shot that is pretty amazing. Film nerds go crazy for that type of thing. That shot alone will earn it an Oscar.
OH COME ON! The only bone I really throw to a film other than "There Will be Blood" is won by... "There Will be Blood"! 3-8 I've never been so humiliated.

I've not seen enough of the documentary or foreign language films to make an informed decision, so I'll stop my predictions here. Sadly, I won't even be able to watch the broadcast live. I'll be anchoring a newscast on a competing network. Oh well.

I consistently win any Oscar betting pool I'm in. I've never done this bad in my adult life. What's the difference? I posted my predictions online for the first time this year. Lesson learned.

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2 Comments:

At 5:28 am, Blogger The Morey Family from Rochester said...

I normally do really well in my predictions for the Oscars, and even though I did slightly better than you, I totally stunk it up this year too! :-)

 
At 12:06 pm, Blogger Ellen said...

What a POSER! Ha ha ha!

Nah

My husband and I did our own ballots before the show started and I only missed 4 the whole night! That's for stuff like "short documentary" and "sound mixing"... total guesses.

I only missed one major category and that was for best supporting actress. I too guessed it would be Cate Blanchett... but go Tilda Swinton! While she's weird (freaked me out in "The Beach")... after "Thumbsucker"... I really like her.

 

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