Friday, March 5, 2010

2010 Oscar Picks

Below are my picks for the 2010 Academy Awards. I normally do a separate "should" and "will" win ballot, but I'm just going to lay out the wills and hope to hell that a couple of my "renegade" picks actually make it. My dear friend Jay has somehow been the reigning champ for the last two years for getting the Oscar picks right, so I'm not sure why I keep insisting on making non-mainstream picks but eh, what the hell. It's all in good fun.

Incidentally, I only am doing picks for the categories I can speak for (meaning, I've seen more than half of the nominees) since there were some categories I couldn't participate in because the films weren't available in a podunk town like...Milwaukee. However, at the time of this post, I have seen all but 5 of the films available to me in any category; approximately 30 films. I know. Nerd.

BEST ACTOR - COLIN FIRTH

He was devastatingly good in A Single Man and his subtle performance literally made me weep. He deserves it the most, but I'm sure Jeff Bridges will get it instead because he's due. I still feel strongly enough where I'm voting for Firth though.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR - CHRISTOPH WALTZ

This is always a strong category, and with the exception of the baffling nomination of Matt Damon, this year is no exception. However, Waltz was the best part of a fantastic movie, and even back when I saw this last fall, we all were in agreement that he better get nominated.

BEST ACTRESS - MERYL STREEP

I know that this is Sandra Bullock's year, and yeah, she did a great job in The Blind Side, but Meryl Streep so embodied this role and did it with such ease that I was completely charmed with an otherwise mediocre movie. I think the general consensus of the film was, "It was okay but I wish there was more Julia." But, I imagine we'll see Sandra Bullock win, and that's okay, but damn I want Streep to win! (And if not her, Helen Mirren)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS - MO'NIQUE
She's going to win this one and she deserves to win. It's not as strong of a category as in years past, (Penelope Cruz was really good in Nine, but really? And Maggie Gyllenhaal, who I actually really like, shouldn't be on this list) but even in a better year, Mo'Nique would be a lock. She was absolutely fantastic.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE - UP

Though I'm a huge Wes Anderson fan (but admittedly haven't seen The Fantastic Mr. Fox by this writing) I can't imagine Up not winning this category. I am no fan of Pixar, but this film really won me over, and regardless of how many times I see the film, I still can't get through the beautiful and tear-jerking first act without bawling my eyes out. Then I proceed to laugh hysterically for the rest of the film.

BEST ART DIRECTION - SHERLOCK HOLMES

If there was anything that stood out in this film, it was the art direction, and it was phenomenal. It gave me hope that Guy Ritchie hasn't completely lost his mind. A close second was definitely Nine, because, like it or hate it, it sure was gorgeous to look at.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY - THE HURT LOCKER

The stunning cinematography helped create the air of tension in this film, particularly when we're looking at an expanse of desert and wondering where that lone sniper is.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN - THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS

I'm actually basing this one on the pictures and articles I've seen about the film, and also because the other nominees aren't so hot.

BEST DIRECTING - KATHRYN BIGELOW

Though all of the nominees with one exception (I'm looking in your direction, Cameron) Bigelow did the most with the least amount of resources and created an absolutely amazing film with The Hurt Locker. Oh, and GIRL POWER!

BEST FILM EDITING - THE HURT LOCKER

Not much to say about it. The editing was great? It was.

BEST MAKEUP - STAR TREK

I haven't seen Il Divo yet, but I will before the telecast, but I can't imagine that Star Trek's nerdy alien makeup isn't going take the prize. Plus, I just thought this was a really funny and super gay picture.

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE - UP

Since I'm more attenuated to noticing the visual aspects of a film rather than the audio ones, a film score has to either be really good or really bad for me to notice it. I noticed the film score for Up immediately and loved it.

BEST ORIGINAL SONG - "THE WEARY KIND" FROM CRAZY HEART

I don't think this is a great song, or even a really good song for that matter, but I'm sick of 300 Disney songs being nominated every year, and the song from Nine is probably one of the weakest songs of the film. So, go Crazy Heart. I hope it's the only award you win.

BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM - GRANNY O'GRIMM'S SLEEPING BEAUTY

Completely hilarious, irreverent and clever, I really hope this one gets it because it's just really down-to-earth, great animation with an awesome premise.

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM - THE NEW TENANTS

I honestly don't think this one is going to win, because the other nominees actually had "important" themes. (Okay, other than Instead of Abracadabra which was also brilliant) But I think that this edgy gem should get the prize. I'm going on record in stating that I would be almost as happy if Abracadabra won as well.

BEST SOUND EDITING/SOUND MIXING - THE HURT LOCKER

I don't know! The sound editing was good, as well as the sound mixing. (shrug)

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS - AVATAR

Don't ask me... I Google Image Searched "Avatar" and this guy came up, and since this picture was a lot more entertaining to me than any of the 7 hours of the actual movie, I'm running with it. Meanwhile, though I think that District 9's visual effects were more impressive based on their limited resources, I can't imagine that Avatar won't get this one. Again, I hope it's the only one they win.

BEST SCREENPLAY: ADAPTED - UP IN THE AIR

This is a really tough category (it usually is) and though Up in the Air is nominated in several other categories, I really think this is the only one it's going to win. And it really deserves this win; any movie that has me walking out of it saying, "I want to read that book" is a successful adaptation.

BEST SCREENPLAY: ORIGINAL - A SERIOUS MAN

All I've been hearing about is that this category is a cage match between two films: The Hurt Locker and Inglourious Basterds. While both are deserving of the nomination (especially Basterds) let's not forget about the brilliant script by Joel and Ethan Coen. It's probably not going to win, but I'm putting my money on the bros.

BEST PICTURE - THE HURT LOCKER

Every year I'm actually okay with a few of the nominees winning this category, and actively root for the others to not win. This year is no exception, it's only grown to the 40th power because there are 312 movies nominated in this category. Up should win Animated, but doesn't deserve a spot on this list. The Blind Side was a good movie, but doesn't deserve a spot on this list. Avatar, don't even get me started. However, every other movie I'm kind of okay with to varying degrees, BUT, The Hurt Locker absolutely deserves the win and it SHOULD win. This was an absolutely amazing film that blew me away (bad choice of words) and completely surprised me. So I have to root for The Hurt Locker. And proceed to boycott the 83rd Academy Awards if Avatar wins.


Agree? Disagree? Don't care? I'm cool with comments concerning all three.