Its that time again! Time to settle back with a bag of popcorn, mock celebrities and their hideous clothes, and boo because (insert piece of trash movie here) won (insert undeserved award here). Its almost time to roll the dice – hoping your favorite movies, actors, directors, editors, sound people, camera people key grips and caterers get the credit they deserve! So, without any further delay, without any further adieu, without any further…..uh, I lost my place! Oh, here it is (schadenfreude) – I give you my picks for the 2010 academy awards!
Best Picture: An Education
I almost missed this film entirely, and it would have been my loss. My favorite thing about “An Education” is the fact that the writers sincerely put up both sides of the argument facing the film’s protagonist, Jenny. The film shows Jenny’s struggles with both the pros and cons of going to Oxford after she graduates, or marrying Jack. The audience is left guessing which the best choice is for Jenny, and hoping she makes the right choice. Will it win? No. Avatar will most likely sweep the Oscars this year. Even though its plot is paper-thin.
Actor in a leading roll: George Clooney – Up in the Air
I will be honest: I choose George Clooney as my best actor pick not because he did such a wonderful job, but because I had no real opinions of the other actors and their performances. However, I must comment that George Clooney did a wonderful job as Ryan Bingham, the man with no goods. I hated him, pitied him, and even loved him at times. George Clooney brought to life a character that could have been very two-dimensional. Will he win? Hard to say actually, I heard Morgan Freeman did a wonderful job in Invictus.
Actress in a leading roll: Carey Mulligan – An Education
I if it were up to me, I would give “An Education” almost every award it is up for! Carey Mulligan really was convincing as Jenny, and deserves the Oscar. I don’t believe I have cared so much about a character since Amélie. Will she win? Perhaps, though from what I hear, Gabourey Sidibe did a great job in “Precious.”
Animated Film: Up
The choice for best animated film was probably the hardest choice I had to make this Oscar season. I thoroughly enjoyed Coraline, and in truth, if there could be a tie, I would not be opposed to giving the Oscar to both films. Oh, alas, the Oscar cannot be split, so I really had to go with Up. Up was simply written and animated a little better than Coraline. Will it win? I’m guessing yes. Critics seem to love it, and it’s the only animated film nominated for Best Picture.
Art Direction: Avatar
Avatar is just an amazingly beautiful film. I don’t believe I have ever seen a film as captivating and beautiful. Sure, the plot was formulaic, but even the harshest critics have to give James Cameron a nod for creating such a beautiful world. Will it win? Most likely. Avatar is supposed to be the golden child of the Oscars this year.
Directing: Inglorious Basterds
This is another category where I had a hard time choosing just one film. Both James Cameron and Quentin Tarantino deserve the Oscar. It is kind of a pity both films came out the same year. Both directors worked for YEARS on their respected films. Both films are supposedly the magnum opus of each director. In the end, I choose Inglorious Basterds because, quite frankly, I enjoyed the film more than Avatar. Inglorious Basterds is well written, well produced, well acted, well filmed, and well edited. Tarantino simply did a better job than Cameron. Besides, Avatar will get enough Oscars. We can spare to give Quentin the nod he deserves for this film. Will it win? Probably not. As I said earlier, Avatar is supposed to be the golden child of the Oscars this year.
Writing (adaptive screenplay): District 9
Yet another hard choice, this time between District 9, Up in the Air, and An Education (my pick for best picture). In the end, I must say that District 9 is the most challenging script. District 9 could have easily become a shoot ‘em up, aliens invade the Earth type of film. Instead, we get humans acting as humans would act if an alien ship finds itself stranded. We have humans treating the aliens like second-class citizens, not as honored guests who might be able to help us with our own problems. We have aliens acting like any other oppressed culture who want nothing more than to be left alone – a culture that just wants to go home. Will it win? Maybe. I’m guessing either District 9 or Precious wins.
Writing (original Screenplay): Inglorious Basterds
I already said how much I love the writing of this movie. Tarantino’s humor, sense of poetic justice, and just plain bizarre and even warped mind all make an appearance in his writing. Several separate plot lines that seem to have no relevance intertwine flawlessly. And what about that ending? Asides from Hitler and his men getting slaughtered by several separate plots against their lives, the one Nazi escapes to what appears to be a storybook ending. Well, almost….almost. I really hope he likes hats. Will it win? Perhaps. Up might give it a good run though.
So what about the rest of the Oscars? Originally I had picks for almost every category, but sadly friends, I don’t have any more time to spend on this article. So I leave you with a solemn apology. There’s always next year!