Friday, February 20, 2009

If Paul Picked the Oscars!

Best Picture:

I've only seen two of the five nominees, Frost/Nixon and Milk, and both were just fine, but nothing that astonishing. Frost/Nixon was Good Night and Good Luck lite, while Milk did a great job at showing why Harvey Milk was important, but scaled back on showing who Milk actually was. Of the two, I'd go with Milk, but it's a tough call. So Slumdog Millionaire will win.

Best Non-nominee: Wall-E. Seriously, people. Wall-E. If it weren't for the token Weinstein Bros. slot being clogged up with The Reader, Wall-E would be a cinch to be nominated, and it may be the best film I saw last year.

Best Actor:

I haven't seen The Wrestler, so I can't vouch for Mickey Rourke, but I've been a Rourke fan since Another 9 1/2 Weeks. I wish him the best of luck, though the competition is pretty great as well. My vote would go to Frank Langella in Frost/Nixon for playing what could have been a caricature as a human being, though Sean Penn is more likely to win. Richard Jenkins did fantastic low-key work in The Visitor--even though the "plot" of the film had little to do with Jenkins' mild-mannered professor character, the story was always his.

Best non-nominee: Josh Brolin in W. The movie itself was kind of a mess, tapering off at the end and featuring some career-worst performances (I'm looking at you, Thandie Newton), but Brolin aced it. Honorable mention: Jean Claude Van Damme in JCVD.

Best Actress:

Of the nominees, I've only seen Doubt, which features a pretty grandiose and unsubtle performace by Meryl Streep. I can't endorse that sort of behavior, so really, I have no idea. My vote would go to Kate Winslet, just to give her a damn Oscar so she can stop making movies that seem so horribly important.

Best non-nominee: Michelle Williams in Wendy and Lucy. In a year filled with dog movies (Marley and Me! Beverly Hills Chihuahua! Bolt! Hancock!), one was actually watchable. In fact, damn good. Williams is spectactularly understated as a homeless young woman who loses her dog. Heartwrenching, potent and not the least bit saccharine.

Best Supporting Actor:

As a change, I've only missed one of these--Revolutionary Road, which appears to be like "Mad Men," only a movie, and crap. Heath Ledger will win, and probably deserves to, but Downey and Brolin were great as well. I'd lean toward Downey as it's always good to see the Oscars recognize a comedic performance, but maybe The Joker qualifies as well.

Best Non-nominee: No ideas, really. Malcolm McDowell for Doomsday?

Best Supporting Actress:

Viola Davis may have less than five minutes on screen, but if Beatrice Straight can win for Network, Davis deserves to win for Doubt. I also haven't seen any of the other nominees, so who knows?

Best Non-nominee: Lena Leandersson for Let the Right One In. Because we deserve better than Twilight for our asexualized vampire movies.

Best Director:

I'll be happy for Danny Boyle to win, though I wish it wasn't for Slumdog Millionaire. Ron Howard and Gus Van Sant did respectable jobs, but I don't know about "best."

Best Non-nominee: Thomas Alfredson for Let the Right One In, Andrew Stanton for Wall-E, Christopher Zalla for Sangre de mi Sangre, Kelly Reichardt for Wendy and Lucy... whatever.

1 comment:

Special K said...

I've never heard of this Wendy and Lucy - sounds great! Good stuff, Paul!