3 posts categorized "UP IN THE AIR"

Feb 02 2010
On The List Comments (3)

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 Kathryn Bigelow & James Cameron: Oscar's War of the Lenses

The Oscar nominations are out, and while some who had a pretty good shot saw their hopes dashed (Daniel Day-Lewis in Nine for Best Actor; Emily Blunt in The Young Victoria for Best Actress; (500 Days of Summer), Where the Wild Things AreInvictus, Nine, Julie and Julia and my personal choice of A Single Man for Best Picture; Diane Kruger in Inglourious Basterds, Julianne Moore in A Single Man and Marion Cotillard in Nine for Best Supporting Actress; Michael Moore's Capitalism: A Love Story for Best Documentary; A Single Man for Art Direction...it was criticized as too pretty, but apparently it still wasn't pretty enough!; "Cinema Italiano" from Nine and "All is Love" from Where the Wild Things Are for Best Original Song), most of the nominees were unsurprising. In fact, with one exception (Kruger losing her spot to Maggie Gyllenhaal), all of the major acting nominees matched the SAG nominees.

Loved how the collected press applauded for the crowd-pleasing Blind Side noms...it's like American Idol where the best frequently don't win, but the favorites do! (Maybe The Blind Side is this year's Ruben Studdard.) 

Lee_daniels Kathryn Bigelow becomes only the fourth woman ever nominated for a Best Director Oscar (so deserved), and has an excellent chance to become the first to win. Also, Lee Daniels is only the second black man nominated for Best Director (also so deserved; the first was not Spike Lee, but John Singleton). Also re Daniels, I don't have stats on how many out gay people have been nominated for the award, but Rob Marshall comes to mind.

Sandra-bullock-the-blind-side As for nominating 10 films instead of five, it feels like a marketing gimmick to me, especially when only five directors are nominated—it feels like the five films whose helmers were ignored are just honorary mentions with next to no chance of winning. And I didn't find the extra five to be particularly interesting choices, either—they feel like films that should have been in the running but shouldn't have been in the final cut, or, in the case of The Blind Side, they're concessions to commercial juggernauts. (I guess that is this year's Ghost, except Ghost was able to be nominated when there were only five slots, and The Blind Side probably wouldn't have had a shot.)

But the Oscars are the original marketing gimmick gone good, so more power to the movies that benefit from the looser standards.

Avatar-movie 

The full list of nominees follows (and more movie talk is available here), but my guesses right now for the top awards would be: Avatar (but Inglourious Basterds has a real shot and The Hurt Locker is not out of the question), Bigelow, Bridges, Bullock (she's had the momentum, but Streep could still pull it off in the more conservative Oscars), Mo'Nique and Waltz.

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Dec 15 2009
Golden Globes: Starfucking With An Accent! Comments (2)

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The Golden Globes are always fun as quasi-Oscar predictors, and because the Hollywood Foreign Press is unabashedly pro-star. They love giving nominations (and even awards) to big names not known for their acting chops, especially when those big names stretch ever so slightly. (Case in point: Madonna was nominated for and won a Globe, though went on not to even get an Oscar nomination.)

This is why someone like Julia Roberts gets nominated for something like Duplicity (um, exactly!) and why they adore giving wins to newcomers whose shows have made a big splash (remembering Keri Russell winning for Felicity, America Ferrera, etc.)

The year's biggest shock for me was the failure of Mariah Carey to get a nomination. She was never, ever Oscar-nomination-bound, not really, but the Globes seemed a possibility for her. Guess her international profile isn't as big as her profile. (This is a breast joke, not a fat joke, and as such is an expression of my civility toward a figure—in both senses—I dislike but whom did well in a movie that was my first or second fave of 2009.)

The complete list of Golden Globes nominations—my comments, if any, follow each category...

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Dec 10 2009
Board Stiff Comments (1)

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The National Board of Review announced its winners for 2009 and they're...pretty staid, I think. I liked Up in the Air a lot (though toward the end it was quite heavy-handed and there is a twist that shocked me only in that nobody but me seemed to see it coming...and I didn't figure out The Sixth Sense!), but I'm kinda flummoxed that it seems to be a leading contender for Best Picture, winning here. More vexing, the Top 10 list doesn't include Precious or A Single Man. If this year's Top 10 for Oscar includes Star Trek, I'm leaving Oscar for good.

Also sad, seeing Anna Kendrick win—as opposed to just get nominated for an award—for her Up in the Air turn. Over Mo'Nique? Over Julianne Moore? Over [fill in the blank]? She was fine in the film, but not outstanding.

Hm.