Who will win Best Picture? Maybe the bigger question is how many people will tune in to find out? This Sunday Billy Crystal, a 64 year old comedian who hasn’t made a decent flick in over a decade, is expected to hand out a bunch of statues to a black and white silent movie. Do they want anyone under the age of 30 to watch?!
Sure the Academy Awards annoy me sometimes by rewarding sentimentality over cutting edge film artistry, and waiting until movie icons are decades past their creative peak to give them their due. But I can’t help loving the stupid old show anyway!
Without the Oscars, there would be little reason for Hollywood to finance movies that don’t fit into the most obvious formulas. The award serves as a vital promotional tool that gives specialty films a chance to compete for a wider audience. Maybe THE ARTIST won’t be your favorite movie of the year, but isn’t it nice to know that 2011 had a comedic alternative to JACK & JILL and BIG MOMMAS: LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON playing at your local mall?
So with that in mind, here’s my thoughts on what’s going to take home the gold Sunday.
THE SURE THINGS (Don’t expect anyone to upstage these folks):
Best Picture: The Artist
Best Director: Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Best Supporting Actor: Christopher Plummer, BEGINNERS
Best Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer, THE HELP
Best Original Script: Woody Allen, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS
Best Adapted Script: Alexander Payne, DESCENDANTS
Best Song: Man or Muppet, THE MUPPETS
Best Foreign Film: A SEPARATION
TWO WAY RACES (Hard to say which one will pull ahead)
Best Actor: Clooney vs. Dujardin. I think THE ARTIST has the edge this year.
Best Actress: Streep vs. Davis. Meryl’s fantastic but her movie was crap! Davis was good in a popular film.
Technical Awards: HUGO vs. THE ARTIST. I say Scorsese gets Art Direction, Costumes, Sound Mixing and Sound Editing. The French flick will take home Editing & Score.
Best Make-Up: HARRY POTTER vs. IRON LADY. Potter’s got to win something, right?
Best Animated Feature: RANGO (but PUSS IN BOOTS, KUNG FU PANDA, and CAT IN PARIS have support)
Best Cinematography: All the nominees deserve applause but TREE OF LIFE has my vote because Lubezki was robbed for CHILDREN OF MEN
Best Special Effects: Andy Serkis should share the prize with the RISE OF THE PLANET OF THE APES technicians. But you can’t count out Potter, Transformers, and Hugo.
THE LITTLE CATAGORIES
Best Animated Short: LA LUNA because Pixar made it! (though FLYING BOOKS has more impressive visuals)
Best Documentary Feature: PARADISE LOST 3 (PINA and UNDEFEATED are in the mix too)
Best Documentary Short: I’d guess voters relate slightly more to SAVING FACE, about women surviving acid disfigurement, than last year’s Japanese disaster chronicle TSUNAMI AND CHERRY BLOSSOM.
Best Live Action Short: THE SHORE was made by Hollywood vets. (Though I’ve heard RAJU and TUBA ATLANTIC play well).