Tuesday, January 22, 2008

So Those Were The Oscar Nominations

I started off so well with those Supporting categories. Then it all went to hell.

I'll update my thoughts on each category as I come up with 'em. I'm kind of nonplussed about the whole thing, though I am THRILLED to see Sarah Polley get a screenplay nod. Awesome.

Michael Clayton
No Country for Old Men
There Will Be Blood

So, yeah, I was wrong on There Will Be Blood getting snubbed. The more I think of it, the more this movie speaks to me on an AMPTP vs. WGA level: clearly, Daniel represents the AMPTP (wildly rich, controlling of the means of distribution, petty, isolated, puts no real emotional value on anything but winning), while Eli Sunday is the WGA (smaller, weaker, asking for his fair share of the money but constantly getting beaten down, kind of pious with the "solidarity" stuff). Why wouldn't the muckity-muck producers in Hollywood dig a movie where SPOILER the AMPTP bludgeons the WGA to death while slobbering and dancing around. That's their version of Superbad.

Julian Schnabel - The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
Jason Reitman - Juno
Tony Gilroy - Michael Clayton
Joel Coen and Ethan Coen - No Country for Old Men
Paul Thomas Anderson - There Will Be Blood

And here's where I'll talk about the Into The Wild mondo snubbage. It's not going to make my top 5 (SPOILER) so I'm not crying about it, but it does leave me puzzled, mostly because when you look from the Globes to the SAG to BAFTA to the guilds, it was all or nothing for this movie, making it the number one most divisive movie of the year. I just can't believe that in the year of There Will Be Blood, Juno, Atonement, et cetera, that Into The Wild of all movies became such a love-it-or-hate-it affair. Also, since when does AMPAS hate a) Sean Penn, and b) actors-turned-directors? Good for Jason Reitman, though. With Diablo Cody still marching towards Oscar, it's good to know that other contributions towards the movie are being recognized. Of course, the best part of the film -- that ensemble cast -- is the one thing it can't be nominated for.

George Clooney - Michael Clayton
Daniel Day-Lewis - There Will Be Blood
Johnny Depp - Sweeney Todd
Tommy Lee Jones - In the Valley of Elah
Viggo Mortensen - Eastern Promises

Haven't seen Elah yet, but good for Tommy Lee Jones. His residual goodwill from No Country For Old Men means I'm happy he gets recognized for something.

Cate Blanchett - Elizabeth: The Golden Age
Julie Christie - Away from Her
Marion Cotillard - La Vie en Rose
Laura Linney - The Savages
Ellen Page - Juno

Wow, good for Laura Linney, man. That totally seemed like a pie-in-the-sky hope to me. I'd feel more psyched for her if The Savages wasn't such a non-event for me. Good movie, but it didn't stick. Same thing with Viggo and Eastern Promises, really. Sucks that Angelina got the bump, though. I was really looking forward to her being back in awardable roles again.

Casey Affleck - The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
Javier Bardem - No Country for Old Men
Hal Holbrook - Into the Wild
Philip Seymour Hoffman - Charlie Wilson’s War
Tom Wilkinson - Michael Clayton

An easy 5/5, predictions-wise. I still think this is Bardem's to lose, and I don't think he will. Holbrook's got old-man nostalgia working for him, but I think that will be more applicable...

Cate Blanchett - I’m Not There
Ruby Dee - American Gangster
Saoirse Ronan - Atonement
Amy Ryan - Gone Baby Gone
Tilda Swinton - Michael Clayton

...here. Watch your back, Amy Ryan. Ruby Dee's a-comin'. It's the least supportable nomination and she got about two minutes of screen time, but I have a feeling.

Juno (Diablo Cody)
Lars and the Real Girl (Nancy Oliver)
Michael Clayton (Tony Gilroy)
Ratatouille (Brad Bird, etc.)
The Savages (Tamara Jenkins)

Let's hear it for three women getting nominated, though only Cody (the favorite) has much of a chance to win. Another 5/5 prediction for me, one of very few.

Atonement (Christopher Hampton)
Away from Her (Sarah Polley)
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (Ronald Harwood)
No Country for Old Men (Joel and Ethan Coen)
There Will Be Blood (Paul Thomas Anderson)

Good for Atonement and (especially) Away From Her! Really happy to see those nominations, even if they came at the expense of what would have been Zodiac's only nod.

Surf's Up

...Whatever, Surf's Up.

American Gangster
The Golden Compass
Sweeney Todd
There Will Be Blood

Sweeney should win, which means something dumb like American Gangster will.

The Assassination of Jesse James... (Roger Deakins)
Atonement (Seamus McGarvey)
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (Janusz Kaminski)
No Country for Old Men (Roger Deakins)
There Will Be Blood (Robert Elswit)

I'm sticking with Janusz Kaminski to deny Roger Deakins the award he's deserved for so many years now.

Across the Universe
Elizabeth: The Golden Age
La Vie en Rose
Sweeney Todd

Across The Universe was bound to show up either here or in cinematography. This does tend to be the category for big, loud messes, so it fits well with Elizabeth and Cloverfield II: Edith Piaf Devours Paris.

The Bourne Ultimatum
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
Into the Wild
No Country for Old Men
There Will Be Blood

I like that Bourne's getting nominated, but Editing seems too easy a get. Like the Academy doesn't truly get why these movies are good, but they sure did cut around a lot, so that must be why.

La Vie en Rose
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

Oh, Norbit. Over Sweeney Todd. That's priceless. Bet Eddie Murphy wishes he could go back in time and put "future Oscar nominee" on those posters last winter so voters wouldn't have denied him that Oscar, huh?

Atonement (Dario Marianelli)
The Kite Runner (Alberto Iglesias)
Michael Clayton (James Newton Howard)
Ratatouille (Michael Giacchino)
3:10 to Yuma (Marco Beltrami)

Assassination of Jesse James had the best score of the year, so aside from Atonement (which was also lovely), this is a pretty boring crop. Though everybody seems happy about the Michael Clayton nod, so I'll have to go back and listen to that some more.

“Falling Slowly” from Once
“Happy Working Song” from Enchanted
“Raise It Up” from August Rush
“So Close” from Enchanted
“That’s How You Know” from Enchanted

I refuse to get happy about the Once nod because it's so totally going to lose. You know it will.

The Bourne Ultimatum
No Country for Old Men
There Will Be Blood

The Bourne Ultimatum
No Country for Old Men
3:10 to Yuma

The Golden Compass
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End

Overall, not a bad year for ol' AMPAS. No outright terrible movies in best picture, and the two (in my opinion) deeply flawed ones at least boasted some high highs. Each acting category has at least three very-good-to-great performances recognized, and the cinematography category is maybe the best I've ever seen. Not too shabby, folks.


NYOne said...

So looking over these nominations, it seems safe to say the Academy HATES Sean Penn.

Joe Reid said...

Apparently. What the hell happened there? They nominated him for I Am Sam! Where did it all go sour?

golexis said...

Eddie Vedder didn't even get a nod for Original Song. Enchanted got THREE of those nominations. Geez.

Deirdre said...

How is Reitman on there and not Fincher, is all I want to know.

Julia said...

Re. Original Score: I was so thrilled to see Michael Giacchino in there for Ratatouille- it almost makes up for his horrible snub for The Incredibles a few years back.

And yeah, what did Sean Penn DO in the years since Mystic River that pissed off AMPAS so bad?

adam k. said...

Maybe they just figure they can take a break from him now that he's won.

I also am worried for "Falling Slowly"'s chances just by default, but I can't help but be fairly optimistic simply because it has no real competition. Eddie Vedder's not here. I think the only other thing that could really win is "So Close" since it's got the love ballad thing going on. But how much did these people really like Enchanted if they didn't nom Amy Adams, the best part of the movie? Plus last year the movie with three song noms ended up losing.

And really, anybody who listens to all these songs wouldn't vote for any other song. So I'll probably be predicting Once to win.