Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Bad News/Good News

Hey folks! Sorry I haven't posted more this week. I'm in the process of moving and my computer is in a box somewhere so today's update is made via work computer.

The nominations for the 82nd Annual Academy Awards were announced this morning and I am both excited and upset. In the interest of ending on a good note, I will begin with my problems.


1. Best Picture - There should not have been ten nominees. I enjoyed District 9, but if you have no intention of giving Best Picture to a movie, why nominate it? I understand it's an "honor just to be nominated" but really what we're doing is adding five losers to the Awards show. Five more faces in split screen, awkwardly applauding someone they aren't. Inglourious Basterds is my pick this year, but if Pulp Fiction didn't win, I'd be surprised if the Academy gives it to Tarantino this time around. I'm surprised and pleased with Up's nomination for Best Picture, marking the first animated Best Picture nominee since the introduction of the Best Animated Feature category, but I think I can see the Academy's exit strategy here. When Up wins Best Animated, is that supposed to make up for the Best Picture loss? Unless they give it both, which I guess they would have to if it gets Best Picture. Of course, it could also take neither since I actually preferred The Princess and The Frog.

Also, Avatar deserves only technical nominations.

2. Best Visual Effects - I can accept that because the names might be unfamiliar to the general public that only three visual effects teams get nominated each year. I also accept that Avatar was nominated here out of obligation and will probably win. Also, District 9 (which for the record should win) is an amazing technical triumph that didn't cost several hundreds of millions of dollars or an entire decade to produce. But really? Star Trek? You think Star Trek looked better than Transformers 2? I know it's hip to hate on Michael Bay (frankly I love the guy) but even if you take issue with the story and the acting, you have to admit that Transformers looked incredible. Other than forever revolutionizing the way we use lens flares, I don't see the motivation for Star Trek's nomination. (Note: all this applies to the Best Sound Editing category as well.) Ok, on to the good stuff.


1. Best Supporting Actor - While I have heard nothing but good things about Matt Damon in Invictus, I am happy to see Christoph Waltz getting the Heath Ledger treatment of not being nominated against anyone who might win. Waltz was amazing in the film, and he will be amazing in a great deal many more films, and I'd hate for the Academy to switch it up and give it to the second best guy at the last second. It's looking like they won't, but then again, Crash won Best Picture.

2. Best Original/Adapted Screenplay - I am ecstatic to see that Avatar was not nominated for Best Original Screenplay or Best Adapted Screenplay.


As a side note, I am pleased to see The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus get a nod with Best Art Direction. I understand that the visual effects team didn't get a mention because producers don't trust Terry Gilliam with their money anymore, but it's nice to see the creative vision acknowledged.

In summary, I will probably watch the Oscars this year, but it's up to the Academy whether or not I will watch them ever again.

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