If it's crap ... We'll tell you
After such a long time of waiting for me, the nominations for the Oscars are here once again! So, let's not dance around the lilies, let's get down to business when it comes to my thoughts on the major categories!
BEST ANIMATED FILM
How to Train Your Dragon
Toy Story 3
Two of these films are hugely popular and have gained much critical and commercial acclaim and one, I bet no one has heard of. Now, I'm not a huge animated movie fan but I do have a special place for them so I'm obviously rooting for Toy Story 3 here! Now, I haven't seen How to Train Your Dragon as of yet but I hear that it's really great so I may have to see it now just to see what all the buzz is! Toy Story 3 was one of the few movies to ever make me close to breaking down into tears so chances are I'm rooting for this to win and since it's PIXAR, I'm willing to bet that it will win! I mean, Toy Story 3 is already being nominated for Best Picture, so I think it's obvious that it'll win here! I just feel really bad for anybody who has to stand against PIXAR any year! I mean, sometimes it just doesn't seem fair!
BEST VISUAL EFFECTS
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I
Iron Man 2
For the most part, all of these movies had amazing visuals! Now, I haven't seen Alice in Wonderland or Hereafter but they seem to have some amazing effects judging from the trailers. The one candidate that I'm really surprised about that's been left out of the competition is Tron: Legacy! Say what you will about not liking the story or whatever (I actually really like the story and I'm a fan of the iconic Joseph Campbell Hero's Journey formula of storytelling), but that movie had some of the best CGI/visual effects I've ever seen! It felt like I was transported inside the world of Tron! I don't know this category's tough to guess but I'm willing to bet on Inception because the effects were so good that you couldn't even tell which things were visual effects, at least I couldn't! However, Harry Potter's visuals as always are incredible so I could imagine Harry Potter or Inception winning in this category!
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
127 Hours--A.R. Rahman
How to Train Your Dragon--John Powell
The King's Speech--Alexandre Desplat
The Social Network--Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
Now, these composers' list of films that they've done are all impressive, however short or long they may be. Slumdog Millionaire, The Bourne trilogy, Hancock, The Lion King, Rain Man, Gladiator, The Dark Knight, Sherlock Holmes, The Queen, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I, The Book of Eli, and being former members of Nine Inch Nails are only a few accomplishments in the world of music and of music in film that these great artists have provided us over the years! While I love Alexandre Desplat and his music for The King's Speech must be wonderful, I still think his composition for "Farewell to Dobby" alone on the score for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I is worthy enough of a Best Score nomination! Anyways, I think that there are only two solid competitors from what I've heard: Inception and The Social Network! Hans Zimmer is one of the great composers of our day (in my estimation) and I've loved every time to listen to every piece of music he comes up with and his score for Inception is one of his best and I'm thinking that it will go on to become one of the iconic movie scores that everybody will recognize! On the other hand, Atticus Ross has proven that with The Book of Eli and now The Social Network that he may also become one of the new great film composers, the way he come sup with sounds is just so cutting-edge and amazing! But pairing Ross up with Nine Inch Nails leader Trent Reznor for The Social Network was just pure genius and they created a score that rivals almost any movie score this year! They really came up with some of the best music of their careers thus far! So, when it comes down to it, I think either Trent & Atticus will win or Hans will win, and I'm so happy either way!
BEST FILM EDITING
The King's Speech
The Social Network
The biggest disappointment in this category for me is the exclusion of Inception! I mean, how could they not recognize the almost perfectly clean editing of that film! Part of great film editing is not noticing the various different cuts in between scenes so that the scene perfectly flows together. Inception did that and more! I mean, with that film, they had to deal with cutting in between 3 or 4 levels of dreaming and all of them are at different speed/time rates and trying to edit the anti-gravity scenes must've taken a LONG time to cut together! Plus, keeping the audience that invested with something as complex as that wasn't an easy task, so what the hell?! So far from what I've seen, the only viable candidate to win is The Social Network because it's edited together so cleverly. Cutting in between the two depositions and the actual real-life story of the founding of Facebook as it unfolded was just seamless! I don't know about the rest, I suppose The Fighter's editing was pretty nice and clean too but I'm favoring for The Social Network in this case.
The King's Speech
The Social Network
Oh my God! This category is tough because as far as the lighting goes, all of the films listed here look beautifully shot in their own ways! Another big part of the film and getting across the tone that you're hoping to convey unto the audience is the cinematography and it's one of the jobs on a film crew that I truly and greatly admire. True Grit's cinematography was so amazing that I felt like I was in the dirty, gritty Old West! Inception's cinematography actually me feel like I was in the dream worlds of these great characters as they performed this grand mind heist! The Social Network's cinematography sprung upon me this dark modern myth in exactly the right way through its spotless lighting! Black Swan through its cinematography looks haunting and quite scary and terrifying and dark! The King's Speech's look actually seems like what it should be: a period of time long gone by! So, I have no idea who will win here and frankly, I don't care because they are all looking stunning!
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
127 Hours--Simon Beaufoy & Danny Boyle from "Between a Rock and a Hard Place" by Aron Ralston
The Social Network--Aaron Sorkin from "The Accidental Billionaires" by Ben Mezrich
Toy Story 3--Michael Ardnt, John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, and Lee Unkrich based on characters from Toy Story 1 & 2
True Grit--Joel & Ethan Coen from "True Grit" by Charles Portis
Winter's Bone--Debra Granik and Anne Rosellini from "Winter's Bone" by Daniel Woodrell
Luckily for me, I've only not seen 127 Hours in this category! Every movie in this category that I have seen is very well-written and deserves some sort of praise but if I'm going to champion anyone, it's Aaron Sorkin! His script was about 160 pages long and it manages to be just two hours, that's how great he is with fast, snappy dialogue and that's a big reason why I'm hoping for him to win! I mean, the Coens write wonderful quirky characters and stories but Aaron Sorkin has to be undeniably one of my favorite writers in the business! Plus, Sorkin has had this a long time coming and after writing some of the most legendary movies and TV shows in history (The West Wing, A Few Good Men, etc.), I don't think there's any chance in hell that Sorkin won't win! I may be wrong though! I hope not for Sorkin's sake!
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Another Year--Mike Leigh
The Fighter--Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy, Eric Johnson
The Kids Are All Right--Lisa Cholodenko, Stuart Blumberg
The King's Speech--David Seidler
Now, when it comes to being the most original screenplay, I must say that Christopher Nolan's script for Inception has got this award in spades! I mean, he pulled off what I call a screenwriting super-stunt that's just as complex as something like Back to the Future or Fight Club if not even more so with this film. He created an entirely new alternate world where you could believe that something like Extraction and Inception could exist in some way and he managed to do something most great filmmakers fail at doing: put a story that has as much depth or complexity on screen that's in any great classic science fiction novel. Although, given how much love The King's Speech has gotten with this awards ceremony with just nominations, it might just win this award even though I think that Inception undoubtedly deserves this!
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Amy Adams--The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter--The King's Speech
Melissa Leo--The Fighter
Hailee Steinfeld--True Grit
Jacki Weaver--Animal Kingdom
Wow! This category's got something good going for everybody! One exception from the list that I wish made it was Blake Lively because I thought she delivered an incredible and unbelievable performance in The Town (which was greatly and criminally ignored this year at the Oscars overall)! I've heard great things about Bonham Carter and I'll probably end up seeing The King's Speech soon but both women from The Fighter delivered such amazing performances this year (especially Melissa Leo, she's positively scary in her role)! However, my favorite to win this award is Hailee Steinfeld, she is fucking amazing in True Grit, one of the best performances of the year in my estimation! She's now one of my favorite actresses to watch and I'm dying to see what her career brings next and the thing that I love the most is that this is her first film and she's already been nominated for an Oscar! That's amazing! Since I'm a hopeful actor, I would die for the opportunity to work alongside her! She's beautiful, she's super-talented, and she's already worked with some of the best in the business! I am so glad that this is just her first film because that means that we have an entire life and career of hers that we can look forward to! Good luck, Hailee!
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Christian Bale--The Fighter
John Hawkes--Winter's Bone
Jeremy Renner--The Town
Mark Ruffalo--The Kids Are All Right
Geoffrey Rush--The King's Speech
Oh my God! What an amazing and unbelievably great category this year (although I'm disappointed and miffed that Andrew Garfield didn't get nominated for The Social Network, I mean he's been nominated for every other Best Supporting Actor award so what the fuck?)! It almost seems pointless because I think that everybody knows that Christian Bale has got this award in the bag already! Despite being so into character the whole time and the fact that you never see Bale in Dicky Eklund, his performance is so inspiring that it's almost unbelievable! If he can lose that addiction to crack, then I can lose my weight and get back to a healthy weight! I must add though that Renner and Hawkes both deliver quite terrifying performances at times! I mean, Hawkes was just unbelievable in Winter's Bone! I so desperately want to see The Kids Are All Right and Ruffalo is one of the reasons why and now that I know that he's been nominated for the first time for that film, I will do what I can to track down the DVD/Blu-ray of the movie and watch it! I even heard that Rush delivers one of his better and more subdued performances in The King's Speech and that makes me even more interested in it! Even though, I hear amazing things about Rush and Ruffalo and I do in fact think that Renner and John Hawkes delivered such powerhouse performances in their films, Christian Bale has this award already and for a long time coming, he deserves it finally! He's like the new De Niro except he puts him to shame with his method! I don't know if there's anything else that needs to be said!
BEST LEADING ACTRESS
Annette Bening--The Kids Are All Right
Nicole Kidman--Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence--Winter's Bone
Natalie Portman--Black Swan
Michelle Williams--Blue Valentine
This seems like another amazing choice of candidates this year! While everybody seems to be pointing towards Natalie Portman this year, I have only seen Jennifer Lawrence's performance in Winter's Bone and I must say that she delivers such an unbelievable powerhouse of a performance in that film! I truly believe that she has a great career ahead of her and I even saw that in her when she was in The Burning Plain which no one talked about. Now, I know that of Heath Ledger and Michelle Williams, I was more of a Heath Ledger fan when they were together but every time I've seen her in anything, she's managed to just blow me away completely! I mean, I think she's slowly becoming one of my favorite actresses because whenever she makes a movie, she just becomes this powerful force so I'm dying to see Blue Valentine! But, despite all the great things I hear about Nicole Kidman or Michelle Williams this year, everybody keeps talking about Natalie Portman and her "lifetime performance" in Black Swan which makes me want to see it even more because then I can finally confirm to myself that Natalie Portman is in fact one of the great modern actresses!
BEST LEADING ACTOR
Jeff Bridges--True Grit
Jesse Eisenberg--The Social Network
Colin Firth--The King's Speech
James Franco--127 Hours
Wow! Another strong category as well! I mean, all of these actors are just tremendous at what they do! Javier Bardem has to one of the most compelling Spanish actors to watch and from what I hear, his performance is beyond words given the film's depressing nature. Now, who can go wrong with Jeff Bridges? If someone were to do Rooster Cogburn better than somebody like John Wayne, Jeff Bridges is the fucking guy to do it! Now, I haven't seen the original True Grit but after seeing the Coens' version, it seems kind of meaningless! I'm dying to see 127 Hours specifically because of the premise and I really want to see James Franco because I've been a fan of his for a long time! Even though Colin Firth seems to be the big favorite this year, I must say that I'm hoping for Jesse Eisenberg to win because he did the most accurate portrayal of a person with Asperger syndrome I've ever seen! I know because I had/have Asperger syndrome myself and I related to him more than anybody I had ever met! This is also the movie that makes him, at least in my eyes, a new Dustin Hoffman type of potential of acting. I genuinely think because of The Social Network that he is the new Dustin Hoffman. But, we'll see what happens!
Black Swan--Darren Aronofsky
The Fighter--David O. Russell
The King's Speech--Tom Hooper
The Social Network--David Fincher
True Grit--Joel & Ethan Coen
I'm sorry but I am pissed for this category! You snubbed Christopher Nolan again?! Are you fucking kidding me, Oscar people?! I'm fine with the Coens, David Fincher, and Aronofsky. I don't really mind Tom Hooper all that much but David O. Russell over Christopher Nolan?! Alright, David O. Russell is a very good director, don't get me wrong but better than what Nolan achieved with Inception? What, are you fucking stupid or are you too good for a guy who makes a genre movie that's accessible to anyone, that makes intelligent films that don't talk down to their audiences, and one who continually pushes the boundaries of the film medium and keeps succeeding?! Well, they never gave Hitchcock an Oscar yet his name is legendary so I guess the Academy is afraid to take risks with nominating somebody they might not like as much just because he directed one of the best films of the year! I mean, for fuck's sake, you gave awards to James Cameron and Peter Jackson for making films just as important and groundbreaking as Inception, yet you're afraid of losing your self-pride in nominating someone like Nolan! I mean, what the fuck?! Anyways, I'll be cheering for Fincher, the Coens, or Aronofsky this year then!
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
The Social Network
Toy Story 3
I must say that this is very impressive list, it seems like every film is on this ultimate list for a fairly good reason. Even though I'm rooting for Inception or The Social Network in particular, somehow I think that The King's Speech will win just because it's a movie perfectly fit for the Oscars and it's very biased interests. Plus, The King's Speech has the most nominations by 13. So, chances are that it'll get Best Picture just because of that! I don't know, maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised! Anyways, it's the Oscars and chances are that nobody will be totally happy so just fuck it!
Anyway, those are my thoughts on the major categories. So, what do you think? Who are your picks for each of the categories? Which film deserves to be named the Best Picture of 2010?