Strider Posted February 26, 2012 Share Posted February 26, 2012 It's Academy Award time, and I don't know about you, but I always watch with a bunch of friends and fill out an Oscar ballot for the Oscar pool. We make a nice spread of food and make catty remarks as the stars promenade down the red carpet and try to get through Joan Rivers with their dignity intact. For the first time I believe, I am divulging my Oscar ballot before the event in case you want to compare picks...or maybe even use mine as a guide. I've won the Oscar pool a number of times, which comes in handy in paying off any excess Christmas/New Year's/Valentine's Day spending. Feel free to post your predictions or who you want to win(who you WANT and who you THINK will win are not always the same)...whoever guesses the most correctly can proclaim themselves "King of the World!" Here we go...my picks for the 2012 Oscars: BEST PICTURE: "The Artist" A fairly weak bunch. Plenty of deserving films left off the list: "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy", "Beginners", "The Trip"...while sappy soggy shit like "War Horse", "The Descendants" and "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Annoying" did. I was thinking "Hugo" would win(it deserves to) ever since the nominations came out, but "The Artist" is picking up some key awards and momentum lately. BEST DIRECTOR: Martin Scorsese "Hugo" In years like this, where there isn't an overwhelming dominant favourite, the Academy usually spreads the wealth around. Hence the Best Director and Best Picture winners often get split. Of course, if I've underestimated the groundswell of support for "The Artist" and it starts winning all the categories it is nominated in, then I'll probably be sweating this category. BEST ACTOR: Jean Dujardin "The Artist" If there was any justice, it should be Gary Oldman or Brad Pitt taking the golden statue home. Instead, it seems to be a two-man race between Clooney and Dujardin. There's a lot of people that don't like Clooney's politics, so I'm going with Dujardin. BEST ACTRESS: Meryl Streep "The Iron Lady" A lock. Let's get one thing clear...contrary to popular conception, Meryl has only won twice and it's been 30 years since her last win. She's due and she deserves it. If you like rooting for the underdog, there's been a late buzz about Viola Davis from "The Help"...people in the industry seem to genuinely LIKE her. So she could be the dark horse candidate that pulls the upset. Hardly anybody has seen "Albert Nobbs" and the other two are too young(Rooney Mara...related to the NY Giants Maras) and too slight(Michelle Williams tried but she is NOT Marilyn Monroe). Oh, and whoever wins is a double-winner as that impeccable male specimen Colin Firth is presenting the Best Actress award...I guarantee whoever wins will take advantage of the opportunity to give Colin a snog. BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: Christopher Plummer "Beginners" Even more of a lock than Meryl Streep. Only the equally great and venerable Max von Sydow has a chance at an upset thanks to him being about the only worthwhile reason to see "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close". BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: Octavia Spencer "The Help" I wanted so badly to put Melissa McCarthy's name down, as she was so funny in "Bridesmaids". But the Academy has no respect for comedies, so I think it comes down to "The Artist" and "The Help". Usually two noms from the same film split the vote but I don't think that will happen with "The Help", as all the love and support seems to be flowing Octavia's way. Best Supporting Actress is usually one of the first awards presented...so this could be a bellwether on whether "The Artist" is going to sweep the awards if Bérénice Bejo wins. BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY: Woody Allen "Midnight in Paris" It won the Writers Guild which is usually a good sign. BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: Alexander Payne et al. "The Descendants" Much as I prefer "Hugo" or "Moneyball" or "Tinker Tailor...", I'm afraid they'll give it to "The Descendants" as a consolation prize for not winning Best Picture. BEST ANIMATED FILM: "Rango" BEST FOREIGN FILM: "A Separation" This is often the most frustrating category for me, as I see a lot of foreign movies, and am often dismayed by what actually wins the Oscar. Films that seemed like sure things have been upset by the merest trifle. Films like "Farewell My Concubine", "Europa Europa", "Raise the Red Lantern", "Amélie", "White Ribbon", "A Prophet", "The Baader-Meinhof Complex" all lost. But hey, they have to get it right some time, and there have been some great winners in the past. So, once again I'll pick what I think is the best one of the bunch, Iran's "A Separation". BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE: "Paradise Lost 3 - Purgatory" Wim Wenders' 3D dance extravaganza "Pina" and "Undefeated" will provide stiff competition, but my heart was in my throat the entire time of watching "Paradise Lost 3", which is about the travesty of the West Memphis Three case. I can't vote against my heart. BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT: "The Barber of Birmingham: Foot Soldier of the Civil Rights Movement" This is often a crap-shoot...even more so this year as I didn't see any of the nominees. I like the title of this one so I'm going with it, haha. BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM: "Raju" I did, however, see all the nominated short films-live action and animated. This is a tough category this year, as all the nominees are worthy of winning, especially the entrees from North Ireland, Ireland and Germany. "Tuba Atlantic", from Norway, was good but there's a lot of seagull slaughter that will piss off the animal lovets in the Academy. In the end, I picked "Raju" because it's a touching short about the timely problem of foreign adoptions. BEST ANIMATED SHORT: "A Morning Stroll" This is really a two-horse, maybe three, race...between "A Morning Stroll" and "La Luna"(which has the Pixar muscle behind it)..."The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore" also has a shot, but although it has wonderful animation its story is weak. The other two suffer the same weakness of an opaque narrative and weak story, along with ordinary old-fashioned type animation. There's nothing wrong with old-style animation...but the story better pack a wallop. "A Morning Stroll" not only packs a wallop...it features three different types of animation. And it has a Zombie attack, haha! BEST ORIGINAL SCORE: "The Artist" It's a travesty that this is going to win, as the only thing memorable about the score is the part stolen from Bernard Herrman's music for Hitchcock's "Vertigo". Boo hiss! BEST SONG: "Man or Muppet" from "The Muppets..." This category is so useless and lame sometimes that it should be abolished. Christ, they could only come up with two nominations this year. Flip a coin. BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: Emmanuel Lubezki "Tree of Life" One of the most polarizing films of 2011...but EVERYONE AGREED it looked amazing; as Malick's movies usually do. If "War Horse" wins I will vomit. BEST EDITING: "The Artist" I went back and forth between "Hugo" and "The Artist"...it's hard to pick against the great Thelma Schoonmaker, but the main thing about "The Artist" that has endeared itself to the Industry is its craft. If you want an upset pick, go with "Dragon Tattoo". BEST SOUND EDITING: "War Horse" This is usually where the big blockbusters have the best chance of winning; the movies with the big explosions and special effects. I would tend to pick "Transformers" even though I never saw it. But something in my gut told me to pick "War Horse". BEST SOUND MIXING: "Transformers" Most people wonder what's the difference between sound editing and sound mixing. Frequently the winners of the two categories are the same film, but every so often it's split. Of course, watch me get it reversed...with Transformers winning sound editing and War Horse sound mixing. If you can win these technical categories it gives you an edge on your Oscar Pool competitors...let's face it, everybody's gonna have Meryl Streep and Christopher Plummer on their ballots, so you've got to separate yourself somehow. BEST VISUAL EFFECTS: "Hugo" "Hugo" was the best 3D film of the year...well, after "Pina" that is...and the most visually appealing of the nominees. It should be a slam dunk. BEST ART DIRECTION: "Hugo" Again, this will be "The Artist" vs. "Hugo"...I'm putting my money on the great Dante Ferretti and "Hugo". BEST COSTUME DESIGN: "W.E." An interesting crop of choices...nothing really sticks out as a favourite. Since there's always a surprise or two during the night, I'm going to pick "W.E.", as the fabulous clothes Wallis wears are what I remember most about the movie. BEST MAKEUP: "Harry Potter" WHAT?!? No Rick Baker nomination!?! Is that even allowed? Well, with no Rick Baker, the field is wide open...yet they only chose to nominate three films. My first instinct is to pick "The Iron Lady". But then I was thinking "The Iron Lady" and "Albert Nobbs" will split the venerable old actress vote...and "Harry Potter" has brought in so much money to Hollywood that it seems churlish not to give it something. This award might be it. And those are my picks. I'm not as confident as I have been in the past. Hard to get a read on the momentum of certain films this year. Looking forward to seeing other people's picks. Good luck. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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