Instead of the usual Five for Friday set of links, I decided to post my Oscar Picks for 2010. Our family has done a competition for 13 years now. Since Titanic we’ve competed for nothing more than bragging rights. This year is proving a little challenging because of new rules and stupid producers who don’t understand basic rules, I’m just going to list more of the major categories. As in Short Subject Live Action will not be on my list.
Best Animated Feature Film of the Year: While I have heard The Fantastic Mr. Fox is a suitable name for the quality of the movie and Princess and the Frog is supposed to be a marvelous return to classic Disney animation, this win is nearly locked. Up will win. The opening scene alone is what made this movie the first animated movie to be nominated for Best Picture since Beauty and the Beast.
Visual Effects: Avatar. Do you really think any other movie has a chance? Really?
Best Achievement in Sound Editing: Star Trek. Avatar is going to tackle the hell out of the technical categories, but this is one category that typically goes to high quality blockbusters. This will mark Star Trek’s lone win. I wished it had been in Best Picture, but oh well.
Best Achievement in Sound Mixing: Avatar, again. See my above statement.
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Song: I think the fact that Princess and the Frog has two nominations will knock it out of contention. Nine did absolutely nothing in the filmmaking world so that leaves room for Crazy Heart’s “The Weary Kind” to bring in the win. The song is impressive as well.
Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Score: This is a category I may end up losing, but I feel good in my choice. If you saw Sherlock Holmes, you’d know that the score was one of the best things about the movie. It was entertaining, but the score was unique and gave such a cool twist to the sound of the movie. Hans Zimmer proves once again why he is one of the few regular movie composers who can keep variety in his scores by trying new things every single time.
Best Achievement in Makeup: Il Divo. Total guess, sounds like a cool movie to give the win to.
Best Achievement in Costume Design: Coco avant Chanel. I don’t know much about this movie beyond the fact that it has Audrey Tautou in it and involves heavy style in France. Those three factors wager a win in my book.
Best Achievement in Art Direction: Avatar. The design of this movie was breathtaking and the detail that went into every shot was astonishing. That’s why this movie will win.
Best Achievement in Editing: This is one category where I think Avatar might not get it. Tarantino’s style always seems to be accompanied with tight editing on his massive exercises in dialogue, but Hurt Locker should take this one. The movie was perfectly paced from start to finish.
Best Achievement Cinematography: Again, I think Hurt Locker will be able to take the “$500 million film” down here. The camera work was great. The handheld shots added a gritty sense of realism to the movie without shaking so much you wanted to vomit. The slow motion shots of explosions and tension made the camera work great.
Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material Previously Produced or Published: This category is a lot of times given to the runner ups for best pictures. Typically the bolder choices can win here. Up in the Air started out as a sure fire contender for Best Picture but has lost a lot of steam from the Hurt Locker vs. Avatar battle. Academy voters will feel sorry for the movie, and give it this win as compensation for not getting Best Picture. Don’t believe me? Look at what happened to Jason Reitman’s last picture, Juno. No Best Picture, but a writing award for Diablo Cody.
Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen: Hurt Locker has a good chance of taking this one, but this will have the same effect Up in the Air will have in the previously published category. Inglorious Basterds is considered a close third for Best Picture now and could pull a huge upset and sneak in while David and Goliath duke it out without anyone realizing it. However, this will be the compensatory prize for Tarantino for his best since Pulp Fiction. If anything, the first scene between the father and Christopher Waltz’s character is cause enough for him to win the prize. The level of depth to that dialogue is insane, there are more change motions done so subtly in that scene than what you see in most movies. Tarantino needs another one for this movie.
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role: Mo’Nique is supposedly unbelievable in Precious. This is one of the categories that doesn’t seem to have much give in terms of who will win.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role: To use a common Dwight-ism from The Office: Anyone who thinks that Christopher Waltz won’t win this category is an idiot. If you haven’t seen Inglorious Basterds yet, see it. After you will realize why in the future he is going to become the next Anthony Hopkins, Jeremy Irons, Alan Rickman, or Gary Oldman as a staple bad guy for movies. You love hating him.
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role: This category, alongside Best Picture, is going to be huge guesses until that envelope opens. 2009 was the year for Sandra Bullock returning to A-list status. The Proposal and The Blind Side have a combined worldwide take of over $550 million. At the same time, Meryl Streep hasn’t had a win since Sophie’s Choice and has been nominated 12 times since then. It’s going to be close, but I think when push comes to shove, Meryl Streep’s going to win another one.
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role: Another one of the closer races, in my opinion. However, this one is not impossible to predict. Morgan Freemen received the mandatory nomination for playing Nelson Mandela, but it wasn’t the best script. Jeremy Renner, George Clooney, and Colin Firth have all had turns with getting attention and possible wins. However, this one seems to be leaning toward Jeff Bridges without much room for guessing. He’s won nearly every major acting award during this season so far, so his shelf will add an Oscar after Sunday.
Best Achievement in Directing: Katheryn Bigelow will most likely take the win and become the first female to every take home an Oscar for this category. I haven’t seen nearly as many movies that are nominated as I would have liked. However, so far 2009 had fewer movies that were handled so well from start to finish and executed every side of the filmmaking process under the direction of Bigelow.
Best Picture: Ah, the final prize of the night and possible the hardest one to pick. Avatar has been the unstoppable juggernaut of box office domination. Hurt Locker is the underdog, the Rocky of nominees to Avatar’s Apollo Creed. So which one will emerge victorious? Avatar. One of the producers was actually stupid enough to break a major rule of campaigning by sending e-mails to key personnel of the Academy. It has consequently caused him to be barred from the awards show and the repercussions could “hurt” the chances too much, get it? Think about what would have happened if David had an idiot cousin who basically screwed up and gave Goliath the advantage. David already had a long shot as it was, he didn’t need the people he trusts to pull a stupid move like that. The end result is Goliath takes down David in the final round , I believe the Best Picture of 2010 will be Avatar.
What do you think? Am I an idiot? Do you agree? Do you think Basterds can sneak in as the neutral party in the Avatar/Hurt Locker fiasco? Comment, let me know!