Saturday, February 28, 2009
I'm guessing all of you are just waiting to see it tonight. Right? ;)
For me: I'm staying in with friends to watch 'Nights in Rodanthe' and 'When a Man Loves a Woman' (don't judge!)
What about you?
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Monday, February 23, 2009
I'll have my annual Most Anticipated Performances list up soon. I cannot tell you how nice it feels to start over with a fresh slate. Hopefully I'll be more ... positive this time around. :)
In the meantime, tell me: Are you excited about the upcoming Oscar race? And have you already seen movies vying for your top 10 lists?
But how well do they compare do the other Oscar-winners from this decade?
Here's what I loved:
Sean Penn wins
-- I won't say too much about this because I know Rourke had his fans here. But I was tremendously surprised by this, and it made up for an otherwise dull night. Terrific win -- one of my favorites ever.
Penelope Cruz's speech
-- I found her words to be very genuine and kind. Best of all, she truly deserved to win.
Dustin Lance Black's speech
-- Eloquent and moving.
-- I loved this mostly because you know we all had the same reactions watching 'Doubt' and 'The Reader.' Brilliant commentary as well.
Kate Winslet's dad
-- Awesome hat/whistle. Where has he been hiding all these years?
What I'm Not Sure About:
-- He gets an A+ for effort but otherwise I thought he was underused. He also didn't do enough to hide the fact that this was one of the most predictable Oscars ever (Seriously: I got only one category wrong ... Best Actor). His entire "performance" was a blur for me ... even the odd Beyonce/Zefron/Vanessa/Mamma Mia! kids montage.
What I Didn't Like:
The rushed presentations of the techs
-- I thought it was a little rude to have SJP, Daniel Craig and others present three tech awards in a row. It was as though the show was trying to rush through these to get to my least-favorite moment of the night ...
What I Hated:
The acting presentations
-- I'm going to be in the minority on this one but I thought the acting presentations was TERRIBLE. It was a good idea in theory, having past-winners come up to present. But why did it have to be such a masturbatory event? Anne Hathaway, not only are you a nominee this year, you are an ACTING GOD. YOU WILL GO ON TO SAVE THE WORLD AND MAYBE WIN AN OSCAR ONE DAY.
Seriously, the whole thing was like a lifetime achievement presentation for each actor, which was so insulting when you compare it to how the rest of the awards were handed out. If anything, all it did was confirm that the Oscars only care about the actors. I hated it.
Toin coss, but for now I'll go with ... Anne Hathway. She looked (and sang) great.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
But feel free to post all your reactions -- from fashion to the winners to the acting clips -- right here in this thread.
I'll be back around 1AM with quick reactions. Until then, enjoy the show!
What do you think, readers: Will we see more great wins like this tonight? Or are we in for a snoozefest?
Here are the results:
Best Picture: Slumdog Millionaire (39%)
Best Director: Danny Boyle, Slumdog Millionaire (44%)
Best Actor: Mickey Rourke, The Wrestler (47%)
Best Actress: Kate Winslet, The Reader (39%)
Best Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight (72%)
Best Supporting Actress: Penelope Cruz, Vicky Cristina Barcelona (39%)
So Heath was the only clear winner, and I'm guessing that's how the Academy's results went down as well.
Either way, looks like the majority of our voters will be very happy with tonight's results.
My personal picks from the poll:
Best Picture: Milk
Best Director: Gus Van Sant, Milk
Best Actor: Sean Penn, Milk
Best Actress: Anne Hathaway, Rachel Getting Married
Best Supporting Actor: Josh Brolin, Milk
Best Supporting Actress: Penelope Cruz, Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Full results HERE.
Oscar.com has a time capsule up on their website, which features pictures, stories and videos from every decade ... including a groovy (read: bizarre) Best Costume Design fashion show from the 1968 Oscars, presented by Jane Fonda.
See it all here.
Saturday, February 21, 2009
Re: Supporting Actress -- I went with Penelope Cruz in the end. I wanted to go with Viola Davis -- and I'll admit anyone can win that freakin' category -- but I'm sticking with Cruz since she's the biggest star who won the most awards. Plus: It's Woody (although they didn't nominate the screenplay, so I'm worried ... )
Post your final predix below.
For now, here are the categories that have been finalized:
UPDATE -- 8:38PM
Best Supporting Actor
Best Original Screenplay
Best Adapted Screenplay
Best Animated Feature
Note on Techs: I didn't go with the full 'Slumdog' sweep just because I felt weird with the idea of 'The Dark Knight' getting snubbed completely by the techs. But we'll see.
Supporting Actress will be up in a little bit. I need to figure out dinner first.
Friday, February 20, 2009
What are you watching this weekend?
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
However, I did catch 'Room at the Top' the other day, starring Oscar-winner Simone Sigornet. Pretty good flick, featuring the shortest nominated performance ever (Hermione Baddeley, for just over 2 minutes and 30 seconds). Go figure.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
What are you most anticipating about the show: Is it the Best Actor showdown between Sean Penn and Mickey Rourke? The 5-way race in Best Supporting Actress? Hugh Jackman as host? Or is it something else?
Sound off below.
Monday, February 16, 2009
Are you Team Penn or Team Rourke? Or do you think someone else should win?
Currently leading Best Actress: Kate Winslet for 'The Reader' [VOTE NOW!]
Currently leading Best Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger for 'The Dark Knight' [VOTE NOW!]
Currently leading Best Supporting Actress: Penelope Cruz for 'Vicky Cristina Barcelona' [VOTE NOW!]
After spending most of 2008 predicting the success of political actors—also called politicians—it’s only natural that Nate Silver (FiveThirtyEight.com) would turn his attention to the genuine article: the nominees in the major categories for the 81st Annual Academy Awards (Feb. 22 at 8 p.m. on ABC). Formally speaking, this required the use of statistical software and a process called logistic regression. Informally, it involved building a huge database of the past 30 years of Oscar history. Categories included genre, MPAA classification, the release date, opening-weekend box office (adjusted for inflation), and whether the film won any other awards. We also looked at whether being nominated in one category predicts success in another. For example, is someone more likely to win Best Actress if her film has also been nominated for Best Picture? (Yes!) But the greatest predictor (80 percent of what you need to know) is other awards earned that year, particularly from peers (the Directors Guild Awards, for instance, reliably foretells Best Picture). Genre matters a lot (the Academy has an aversion to comedy); MPAA and release date don’t at all. A film’s average user rating on IMDb (the Internet Movie Database) is sometimes a predictor of success; box grosses rarely are. And, as in Washington, politics matter, in ways foreseeable and not. Below, Silver’s results, including one upset we never would have anticipated.
But it's looking more and more likely that it'll win 9, especially on the heels of its ACE and ASC wins.
Sound off in the poll.
Click here to see them in full.
And for some insight as to how they were handed out:
-- 'Milk''s win was a no-brainer for me, although I should give some love to 'Rachel Getting Married' as well, as it was the only other film I truly loved this [last?] year.
-- I was initially going to go with Demme because 'Rachel' really was his movie when it was all said and done. But I felt Van Sant deserved to win for putting it all together: the screenplay; the ensemble; and Penn's towering performance. And speaking of ...
-- Another no-brainer for me. It was a career-best performance by Sean Penn, and definitely in my top 5 of the decade.
That being said, I've come to terms with the fact that Rourke will probably win the Oscar next Sunday. He was excellent in 'The Wrestler' (my #3, behind the woefully-underrated and snubbed Michael Sheen), so who's to complain, really?
Still ... I'll be rooting for Penn until the very end. Call me irrational, but Penn deserves an Oscar more than anyone else this year.
But, yes. I've made my peace.
-- I loved this set of nominees, especially compared to Oscar's hit-or-miss lineup. Hawkins, Winslet and particularly Rebecca Hall were each worthy in their own respect.
But I had to go with Anne Hathaway here, who deserves an Oscar for the family intervention scene alone. She'll lose to Winslet in the real world, of course, but I do hope she'll return again soon.
Best Supporting Actor
-- Look it: I loved 'The Dark Knight,' and I'll be happy to see Ledger win on Sunday. But I 100% felt Josh Brolin was Oscar-worthy in 'Milk.' To me, it was a true supporting performance, and he took the limited screentime he was given and made something brilliant out of it. See his drunk party-crashing scene for further proof of that.
Best Supporting Actress
-- I made a case for everyone except Samantha Morton (excellent performance, but definitely a 5th-spot nominee for me). But Penelope Cruz wins for being so memorable and fun in a film that should have been more recognized by the Academy.
Best Original Screenplay
-- 'Milk' edges out a very strong lineup. I'm still cheering over 'In Bruges'' Oscar nomination. How 'Rachel' missed here I'll never understand.
Best Adapted Screenplay
-- 'The Dark Knight' wins, admittedly by default. What a weak year it was for adapted screenplays.
Also: I realize I'm going to lose credibility for picking J-Hud over Bruce, but whatever. 'All Dressed in Love' is great fun.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Currently leading Best Actress: Kate Winslet in 'The Reader'
Currently leading Best Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger in 'The Dark Knight'
Don't forget to cast your votes in the other polls if you haven't already.
Best Supporting Actor
Monday, February 09, 2009
Nothing of note here. I figure Oscar will simply match WGA, given 'Slumdog''s 10 nominations and 'Milk' being the only Best Picture nominee in Original. 'WALL-E' could surprise, but I'm guessing Pixar will finally win screenplay when it gets a BP nom ... if that ever happens.
What about you: What are you predicting to win in the screenplay categories?
Sunday, February 08, 2009
BEST PICTURE: Slumdog Millionaire
BEST DIRECTOR: Danny Boyle, Slumdog Millionaire
BEST ACTRESS: Kate Winslet, The Reader
BEST ACTOR: Micky Rourke, The Wrestler
SUPPORTING ACTOR: Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight
SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Penelope Cruz, Vicky Cristina Barcelona
BRITISH FILM: Man on Wire
ANIMATED FILM: WALL•E
CARL FOREMAN AWARD: Steve McQueen, Hunger
FILM NOT IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE: I’ve Loved You So Long
ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY: Martin McDonagh, In Bruges
ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: Simon Beaufoy, Slumdog Millionaire
CINEMATOGRAPHY: Anthony Dod Mantle, Slumdog Millionaire
VISUAL EFFECTS: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
MAKEUP and HAIR: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
PRODUCTION DESIGN: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
SCORE: AR Rahman, Slumdog Millionaire
SOUND: Slumdog Millionaire
EDITING: Slumdog Millionaire
COSTUMES: The Duchess
RISING STAR: Noel Clarke
SHORT ANIMATION: Wallace & Gromit: A Matter of Loaf and Death
ACADEMY FELLOWSHIP: Terry Gilliam
Correct me if I'm wrong, but 'Slumdog' won more BAFTAs than 'Schindler's List,' correct?
The winners, based on voting by the 12,000 WGA members, were announced Saturday night at simultaneous ceremonies at the Century Plaza in Los Angeles and the Hudson Theater in New York. Last year's show in Los Angeles was canceled due to the WGA strike.
Well ... half-good news, anyway.
Saturday, February 07, 2009
Any early guesses?
Currently winning the Best Actress poll: Kate Winslet for 'The Reader.'
Friday, February 06, 2009
Thursday, February 05, 2009
But I'll be updating regularly from now on, including this brand new poll feature -- 'If YOU Picked the Winners.'
Let's kick things off with Best Actress ...