Saturday, January 30, 2010

Final Oscar Predictions

With the Oscar nominations being announced in three days (three days!), its time I posted my final predictions. I've struggled with a lot of these, mainly because the awards season has really heated up and forced me to change some of my wishful thinking and accept reality. It's also helped that I have seen more of the films in contention, allowing me to make my judgments.
However, a lot of what I had previously predicted has remained unchanged, mostly due to their dominance over the past month (or the general lack of better choices). Without further ado, here they are; I hope I do better than last year.
BEST PICTURE
An Education
The Hurt Locker
Precious
Avatar
Up
Up in the Air
Invictus
Nine
Inglourious Basterds
A Serious Man
A lot of these films (Up in the Air, An Education, Precious, Nine, A Serious Man, Invictus) have already faced some backlash, and now it seems that The Hurt Locker is beginning to see its own backlash begin. None of this should hurt any of their chances at a nomination, but the expansion to 10 has not prevented this from being narrowed down to a few-horse race. The only iffy one, to me, is Nine, which has suffered a lot since its release, but recognition from the Golden Globes and Screen Actors Guild doesn't hurt its cause.
BEST ACTOR
Morgan Freeman, Invictus
George Clooney, Up in the Air
Colin Firth, A Single Man
Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart
Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker
Nothing really new here.
BEST ACTRESS
Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia
Carey Mulligan, An Education
Gabourey Sidibe, Precious
Helen Mirren, The Last Station
Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side
I actually had the opportunity to see Julie & Julia last night. Believe it or not, I enjoyed it, and thought that Streep really did turn in a fantastic performance as Julia Child. But more on that later. I find it interesting that this race has evolved into Bullock vs. Streep, especially with the amount of major awards Bullock has been winning lately.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds
Stanley Tucci, The Lovely Bones
Christopher Plummer, The Last Station
Woody Harrelson, The Messenger
Matt Damon, Invictus
I'm bringing Matt Damon back into the fold; two Globe nominations and a SAG nomination are too much to ignore anymore (speaking of ignored: Alfred Molina was dropped, if you notice). However, I notice that Damon's not really in this to win it anymore, it seems. Though I can't blame him: he's up against Christoph Waltz!
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Mo'Nique, Precious
Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air
Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air
Julianne Moore, A Single Man
Penelope Cruz, Nine
This category is suddenly up in the air (ba-dum-DUM) after I boldly proclaimed it set in stone. Moore and Cruz are the iffy ones; Moore is still an Oscar favorite, so I don't think they'll pass over her, and even though Nine has been eviscerated by critics, Cruz has still picked up key nominations for her turn in it. If the Academy does decide to pass over them, Diane Kruger, Melanie Laurent, Samantha Morton and Marion Cotillard (up yours, category fraud!) are waiting in the wings.
BEST DIRECTOR
Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker
Lee Daniels, Precious
Jason Reitman, Up in the Air
James Cameron, Avatar
Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds
Clint Eastwood is still the spoiler here. Watch your back, Daniels. PS- Please let Bigelow win this.
Check back here on February 2, when I'll give my reactions to every category (even Make-Up!)

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