Friday, July 20, 2012

The 75th Oscars: A Look Back

In preparation for Annette's profile either this weekend or next week, I've decided to publish another one of these.

Best Picture: Chicago deservedly took home this award, given it was a popular hit that audiences and voters love. And it brought back THE MUSICAL!!!!!! Unfortunately, we haven't had a really great one like this in awhile. Anyway, the runnerup was probably The Pianist, given it had won the BAFTA and scored surprise wins in three major categories. It may have been too quiet and reserved to win the award though. The Hours was not quite liked enough to win, G.O.N.Y was too controversial and the L.O.T.R.T.T.T had no chance given it was almost the guaranteed winner for the next year. My pick: Chicago, it's simply my favorite movie of all time! It made me love musicals and film! I like Two Towers and The Pianist though...

Best Director: Polanski scored a huge upset over frontrunners Marshall and Scorsee. I guess voters felt it was finally time to honor him and The Pianist was definitely a strong achievement. I'm guessing Marshall was an EXTREMELY close competitor given he won the DGA and his film won B.P. People thought Scorsese had a chance, but Gangs was simply so controversial, and Marshall had stolen all his buzz. The other nominees weren't contenders. My Pick: Marshall, pretty easily, but I love Almodovar too.

Best Actor: Adrien Brody pulled a surprise win over his competitors, Jack Nicholson and Daniel Day Lewis. I would have predicted Day Lewis, but I'm guessing voters thought he was too over the top and he didn't need another Oscar quite yet. I think Nicholson's buzz faded and the role is very subtle, again, not something the Academy honors a lot any more! Caine's campaigning probably turned voters off as for lack of buzz around the film, and Cage was a long-shot. My choice: I've seen 3 of them (Cage, Brody, Nicholson), and they were all great! If pressed, I'd pick Nicholson!

Best Actress: Nicole Kidman won here, and although her SAG loss to Zellweger was a blow, I think she edged her out because Nicole may have been considered the stronger, more overdue actress. She had a great year the year before, and sentiment for her divorce with Tom Cruise helped her a lot. Not to mention the role is an extremely juicy one and the past two winners were actresses showing unseen range in dramatic roles (Out of the three, Kidman had the longest dramatic resume,but it's still something that she had never done before). I think voters didn't feel Zellweger needed to win, and cast a vote for her co-star Zeta-Jones instead. Moore was the frontrunner, but her loss of momentum to Kidman and Zellweger and Far From Heaven's lack of buzz caused her to loose, as well as a nomination for her lesser work in The Hours. Diane Lane was a long-shot: I have a hard time believing the Academy would ever honor her film with an Oscar and they probably didn't think she needed an Oscar quite yet either. Salma Hayek had no chance in hell of winning. My Pick: Julianne Moore, sorry Diane and Renee, I love you, but Moore is on a whole other level. Her work in The Hours is not bad at all, but it pales in comparison to her magnificence here.

Best Supporting Actor: Chris Cooper took the award, and I think he was able to maintain his lead given he had won almost everything else and the academy wanted to honor the actor and the film. Walken was obviously the runner-up, given his SAG win, but I think the film was not a big enough hit with the Academy. My pick: Cooper, though I need to rewatch him and Walken.

Best Supporting Actress: Zeta-Jones took it, due to Chicago being the frontrunner and people loving the performance. I'm guessing Meryl was the runner-up, given her G.G and strong campaign. Moore had a shot, but all The Hours buzz seemed to be centered on Kidman, and she was still going to split the votes with her work in Far From Heaven. Neither Bates or Latifah had a chance. My pick: Zeta-Jones, though I love Streep too and respect, but not love Julianne.

Best Original Screenplay: A race between Far From Heaven and Talk To Her, and I'm guessing Talk To Her won given it was more colorful and original. My Pick: Talk To Her, closely followed by Far From Heaven.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Many felt The Hours or Adaptation would win, and I would have to agree,I would have probably given the edge to The Hours. But The Pianist won, it's a good script, but it's not what makes the movie a sucess, in my opinion. My pick: Adaptation hands down. It is so original and great.

So, what would be your picks and preferences? Who did you think would win? Who were the runnerups/dark horses?


Louis Morgan said...

My choices my thoughts.

Best Picture: The Pianist, Chicago probably gained the edge actually do to its lighter tone.

Best Actor: Nicholson, but I might go back to Brody. Brody won probably because he was the only one without an Oscar, although I would still say it was probably close between Brody, Day-Lewis, and Nicholson anyway. By the way the reactions of the actors to the winner is simply the best.

Best Actress: Need to see more of them, but I imagine it was close but Kidman gained the edge do to wealth spreading.

Best Supporting Actor: Walken. Cooper probably won fairly easily though despite the Sag win for Walken. As Walken had won an Oscar before but not a Sag.

Best Supporting Actress: Streep. Zeta-Jones easily won I think due to the importance of her role to the eventual best picture winner, as well as simply the buzz on her side.

joe burns said...

I need to see Brody again, but I thought he was terrific...

You should really see Moore and Lane! Maybe Molina will be on your Best Actor 2002 list?

Yeah, that's what SAG sometimes does do that. Im surprised at how unreliable they were this year. Neither Day-Lewis, Zellweger, or Walken took home awards.

dinasztie said...

It seems we don't see eye to eye when it comes to this year. You know what I think of Chicago so I won't terrorise you with my not too kind words on it. :))

Picture: The Pianist (easy)
Director: Polanski (easy)
Actor: Nicholson (by a tiny-tiny hair over Brody)
Actress: Julianne
Supp Actor: Walken
Supp Actress: Bates
O-Screenplay: My Big Fat Greek Wedding (guilty pleasure, but love love love the actual winner)
A-Screenplay: The Pianist (not a favorite of many, but I love how subtle and sensitive it is, free of sentimentality, beautiful screenplay)