cwfilmbuff: (movies)
I thought Rourke was going to continue his winning streak, but otherwise there weren't any major surprises.

After all the talk of changing the format of the ceremony I was a little unsure going in, but I liked what they did with it. The through-line of going from pre-production to post was a nice touch. My only complaints were that the musical tribute didn't really fit with the rest of the show, and I missed the film clips for the acting awards. Other than those two things though, it was a very entertaining show, and I'm looking forward to next year.
cwfilmbuff: (movies)
Just got back from seeing all the Best Picture nominees (been a while since I spent that much time in a theater), so I'm about as informed as I'm going to get. So here goes:

Documentary: Man On Wire is likely to win, and of the two I've seen it would get my vote.

Animated Feature: Wall-E, hands-down. Still the best movie of any kind I saw last year.

Visual Effects: All three of these are good, but I'd give it to The Dark Knight.

Sound & Sound Editing: My vote would be Wall-E for Sound and Slumdog Millionaire for Sound Editing, but Dark Knight will probably collect at least one of these.

Song: "Jai Ho" from Slumdog. It made for the most enjoyable credits sequence of the year, and is up against a less memorable song from the same film, and a good but not great Disney tune.

Score: Curious Case of Benjamin Button if they play it safe, otherwise Slumdog.

Makeup: Benjamin Button. Dark Knight stretches credibility toward the end, and if they were going to reward the Hellboy makeup they would have done so in 2004.

Costumes: I haven't seen The Duchess, but if anything beats Benjamin Button, it will.

Art Direction: I'd give it to Changeling, but it's close between that and Benjamin Button.

Editing: Slumdog and Dark Knight are both excellent in this category, but I'd give the slight edge to Slumdog.

Cinematography: The Dark Knight has a good shot at a lot of the technical awards, but this is the one it should easily walk away with. I don't think there's been a better-shot movie in quite a while.

Adapted Screenplay: Slumdog should and probably will win.

Original Screenplay: In Bruges gets my vote, but I'd put my money on Milk as the only Best Picture nominee in the category.

Director: With the possibly exception of Gus Van Sant, everyone in this category has made better movies than what they're nominated for, but I think Danny Boyle will take it.

Supporting Actress: I would give it to Taraji P. Henderson, but I think the smart money is on Penélope Cruz.

Supporting Actor: Heath Ledger.

Actress: I think Kate Winslet will win it, although it's far from her best work. I would actually give it to Angelina Jolie.

Actor: If I were picking it would be a toss-up between Richard Jenkins and Frank Langella. Chances are it will go to my third choice, Mickey Rourke.

Picture: Slumdog. It's won every other award it's been up for, and of the nominees, it's the strongest, with Benjamin Button a close second. Not my first or second pick for best of the year, but those aren't on the list.
cwfilmbuff: (movies)
Not a lot of surprises this morning. The major categories are mostly the "prestige" pictures that open at the end of the year specifically to win awards. I'm just going to do bullet points while I organize my thoughts and wait for the categories that weren't announced on television to show up online.

Very happy to see In Bruges and WALL-E up for screenplay.

The lead vs. supporting distinction occasionally baffles me. Philip Seymour Hoffman has top billing in Doubt, but is nominated for Supporting, while Kate Winslet wins a Golden Globe for The Reader, and is now up for Lead Actress with the same role.

Looks like only the two categories where I've seen all the nominees are Sound Editing and Song.

Not surprised to see The Dark Knight up for a lot of technical awards, just would have liked to see it and WALL-E in more of the major categories.

Kind of surprised Gran Torino didn't get any nods; the Academy usually loves Eastwood. Changeling is up for a few, but none for him (and most of the reviews I've read say it's the weaker of the two).

That's about all the insight I have this early in the morning (and typing while holding a wiggling infant is getting to be a challenge), so I guess we'll see what happens a month from today. Maybe I'll get a chance to catch a couple more major nominees between now and then, and have some more informed opinions.
cwfilmbuff: (movies)
I haven't seen enough of the contenders to make a lot of predictions, but here are a few things that would make me happy early tomorrow morning, in descending order of likelihood:

Almost certain
Slumdog Millionaire for Picture, Director, and Screenplay.
WALL-E and Kung Fu Panda for Animated Feature.
Mickey Rourke for Actor.
Heath Ledger for Supporting Actor.

Possible
The Dark Knight for Picture.
Man On Wire for Documentary.
The Fall for Art Direction.
In Bruges for Screenplay.

Unlikely
WALL-E for Picture.

Like I said, I haven't seen as many of the movies that are likely to be nominated as I have in the past, so not making a complete list. That and it's kind of a moot point since I didn't get around to this until 11:00 at night, so unless you're reading this in the next seven and a half hours chances are I've already posted again on the subject, this time with reactions.

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Chris

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