Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Hollywood Babble On & On... #30: The Nominations Are In!

Okay, I have the Oscar nominations and I'm going to offer my opinion of them, because that's what I do best.

Best Picture:

British, pretentious, and somber in tone and story. Didn't do well at the box-office, so it's a likely winner.

Commercially successful, critically acclaimed comedy made by a Canadian director, no chance.

"Michael Clayton,"
Box-office turkey, but stars Hollywood insider George Clooney so it has a chance if Academy voters think it could get a bounce in DVD sales.

"No Country for Old Men,"
Critically acclaimed and a surprise sleeper hit of the winter. But the Academy doesn't much care for the commercially successful.

"There Will Be Blood."
Still in limited release, seen mostly by Academy members who might vote for it because they think they have to.


George Clooney
"Michael Clayton"

Like most Clooney films it tanked, but since it was the sort of faux-sincere drama the Academy loves this may get him the prize as consolation for losing Best Picture.

Daniel Day-Lewis
"There Will Be Blood"

Almost universal critical praise for this performance, pretty much demanding that he get the Oscar, most likely jinxing it for him.

Johnny Depp
"Sweeney Todd the Demon Barber of Fleet Street"

A modestly popular musical starring an actor who is popular among other actors. Slim chance.

Tommy Lee Jones
"In the Valley of Elah"
A critically savaged film that hardly anyone not related to director Paul Haggis saw, but it could get Jones the Oscar as some sort of anti-war (more anti-Bush) statement.

Viggo Mortensen
"Eastern Promises."

Critically acclaimed, modestly successful film, might be viewed as 'too commercial' as a thriller to be 'worthy' of an Oscar.


Cate Blanchett
"Elizabeth: The Golden Age"

Loved the first Elizabeth film, but like 99% of the world, I didn't even know that the sequel had been released. Slim chance.

Julie Christie
"Away From Her"

Might win for her overall body of work, and as the token 'indie' winner for the year.

Marion Cotillard
"La Vie en Rose"

Space-filler nomination thanks to a dearth of decent roles for women, no real chance to win.

Laura Linney
"The Savages"

An Actor's Actress, but starring in a film no one has seen. Has to beat Julie Christie's entire career to win.

Ellen Page

I should be rooting for her to win, but an Oscar win at her age, even though deserved, will kill her fledgling career. Plus, she's not married and won't be able to get divorced within a year of winning the Oscar.

Supporting Actor:

Casey Affleck
"The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford"

Acclaimed film, but fell victim to a dreadful release plan from the studio, which might get Affleck the award as consolation.

Javier Bardem
"No Country for Old Men"

Praised for his scary performance, but the dusty old fossils of the Academy don't care for scary, unless the actor is British. Slim chance to win.

Hal Holbrook
"Into the Wild"

Could win more for his long and respected career than this film which was seen by two people: Sean Penn and his soon to be ex-wife's divorce lawyer.

Philip Seymour Hoffman
"Charlie Wilson's War"

His performance is considered a high point in an otherwise jumbled and wishy-washy film that failed to make a profit or much a connection with the audience. But it is the sort of film the Academy loves to honour: politically correct. Medium chance of winning.

Tom Wilkinson
"Michael Clayton."

British actor in a film no one saw, his chance is slimmer than Amy Winehouse.

Supporting Actress:

Cate Blanchett
"I'm Not There"

She's a dude! Too much of a stunt in a film no one has seen. Slim chance.

Ruby Dee
"American Gangster"

Like Christie and Holbrook could win for her entire career. The fact that the film was also commercially successful is also in her favour.

Saoirse Ronan

Since no one knows how to pronounce her first name, no one will vote for her for fear of angering the presenter who has to read it.

Amy Ryan
"Gone Baby Gone"

The title of the film also describes her chance of winning.

Tilda Swinton
"Michael Clayton."

Another nomination for a film no one has seen. Her only chance of winning is if voters deny Clooney both Best Picture and Best Actor.


Julian Schnabel
"The Diving Bell and the Butterfly"

A film barely seen outside of Academy voters. Pretty good chance of winning.

Jason Reitman

Made a commercially successful comedy, kryptonite to Academy voters.

Tony Gilroy
"Michael Clayton"

Good chance, made a faux-sincere drama starring Clooney which will make Academy voters feel better about working for heartless corporations by honouring a film denouncing heartless corporations.

Joel Coen and Ethan Coen
"No Country for Old Men"

Critically acclaimed and commercially successful. The Academy hates that.

Paul Thomas Anderson
"There Will Be Blood."

Either he'll win or he won't, it's a 50/50 draw for him.

Adapted Screenplay:

Christopher Hampton

Sombre, pretentious, and pompous commercially struggling melodrama. Good chance of winning.

Sarah Polley
"Away from Her"

Essentially a darker Lifetime movie of the week, it's also Canadian, slim chance.

Ronald Harwood
"The Diving Bell and the Butterfly";

Sincere but rarely seen film, good chance.

Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
"No Country for Old Men";

Commercially successful thriller, slim chance.

Paul Thomas Anderson
"There Will Be Blood."

Only as consolation for losing Best Director.

Original Screenplay:

Diablo Cody

Dialogue was a bit Gilmore Girls, and it's a comedy, so it's got a very slim chance.

Nancy Oliver
"Lars and the Real Girl"
Could call it Lars and the absent audience. Middling chance.

Tony Gilroy
"Michael Clayton"
Front runner, faux-sincere anti-corporate politically correct melodrama.

Brad Bird, Jan Pinkava and Jim Capobianco
It's about a rat that cooks. No chance.

Tamara Jenkins
"The Savages."
Sincere family drama hardly anyone has seen. Middling chance to win.

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