Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Oscar predictions: Just how wrong can I be?

On the odd chance that I somehow do get these mostly right, be assured that I did indeed type this in early Tuesday morning, well before the actual nominations were announced on the TV. And though I have no idea which celebrity will help with the announcing, here's hoping it's someone with even a tenth the charm of last year's Salma Hayek (and please, God forbid, not John Travolta in a fat suit and drag.)

So, without further ado, here are my predictions for seven of the top categories, along with, in some cases, which names you would be hearing if I ruled the world.

Best Picture
"There Will Be Blood"
"No Country for Old Men"
"Sweeney Todd"

If I ruled the world: My picks for the top five movies of 2007, whittled down from the top 10, are: "Into the Wild," "No Country for Old Men," "Once," "Ratatouille" and "The Savages," and as I've stated in this space many times, my imaginary vote would be loudly for "Ratatouille" as the big winner.

Note: Unlike the academy, I always think the directors of all the Best Picture nominees should be automatically nominated for Best Director, so I would predict the nominees will be Paul Thomas Anderson, Joel & Ethan Coen, Joe Wright, Tim Burton and Jason Reitman.

Best Actress:
Keira Knightley, "Atonement"
Helena Bonham Carter, "Sweeney Todd"
Ellen Page, "Juno"
Julie Christie, "Away from Her"
Laura Linney, "The Savages"

If I ruled the world: Marketa Irglova's sublime performance as "The Girl" in "Once" would definitely be on the above list.

Best Actor:
Daniel Day Lewis, "There Will Be Blood"
Johnny Depp, "Sweeney Todd"
James McAvoy, "Atonement"
Denzel Washington, "American Gangster"
George Clooney, "Michael Clayton"

If I ruled the world: It's hard to argue with Lewis, who I'd have to call the prohibitive favorite in this category, but I'd also love to see Emile Hirsch in "Into the Wild," Javier Bardem in "No Country for Old Men"(supporting actor my ass!), Chris Cooper for "Breach" and, yes, why not Micheal Cera for "Superbad" on this list too. Comedies need love too, after all.

Supporting Actress:
Saoirse Ronan, "Atonement"
Kelly Macdonald, "No Country for Old Men"
Ruby Dee, "American Gangster"
Amy Ryan, "Gone Baby Gone"
Allison Janney, "Juno"

If I ruled the world: I think this is easily the strongest category this year, and can't quibble with any of these if they are indeed the nominees. My money would be on Ruby Dee to win, but if there could be more than five nominees I'd love to see Catherine Keener for "Into the Wild" and Jennifer Jason Leigh for "Margot at the Wedding" each get some props.

Supporting Actor:
Hal Holbrook, "Into the Wild"
Phillip Seymour Hoffman, "Charlie Wilson's War"
Javier Bardem, "No Country for Old Men"
Tom Wilkinson, "Michael Clayton"
Paul Dano, "There Will Be Blood"

If I ruled the world: I'd have to predict Bardem will win this one fairly easily, but I'd still say no one defined the role of supporting actor better in 2007 than Holbrook, who just took over "Into the Wild" for the short time he was on screen. I would also nominate Robert Downey Jr. for "Zodiac" and, heartily, Peter O'Toole for the voice of Anton Ego in "Ratatouille."

Adapted Screenplay:
"There Will Be Blood," Paul Thomas Anderson (novel by Upton Sinclair)
"No Country for Old Men," Joel & Ethan Coen (novel by Cormac McCarthy)
"Atonement," Christopher Hampton (novel by Ian McEwan)
"Into the Wild," Sean Penn (novel by Jon Krakauer)
"Kite Runner," David Benoiff (novel by Khaled Hosseini)

If I ruled the world: Though it won't happen, I'd love to see some love for Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud for adapting Satrapi's graphic novels into the fine flick "Persepolis."

Original Screenplay:
"Juno," Diablo Cody
"The Savages," Tamara Jenkins
"Michael Clayton," Tony Gilroy
"American Gangster," Steven Zaillian*
"Waitress," Adrienne Shelly
* This was actually adapted from a newspaper article by Mark Jacobson, so may not qualify in this category.

If I ruled the world: A final plea, sure to fall on deaf ears, for some recognition for "Ratatouille," here for the often-magical script by Brad Bird.

And there you have it. I'll update this today if I have time, but if not, please feel free to add your two cents in the comments, and believe me, no amount of venom for the Academy is forbidden today. Peace out.


jeremy said...

Besides Oscar noms, its a good day for DVD's, too! 4 by Agnes Varda are being released by Criterion today.
Its been a long time coming, but Cleo from 5 to 7 is surely worthy of a spot on the Netflix queue if you've never seen it.
P.S. I think Michael Clayton will be a best picture nom.

Reel Fanatic said...

Good call, Jeremy ... I wouldn't have predicted Michael Clayton, but the presence of George Clooney is certainly gives a flick the golden ticket nowadays ... and Cleo from 5 to 7 is indeed being added to the queue right now

Anonymous said...

I was actaully hoping to see 'Superbad' get a nod for best original screenplay.

Reel Fanatic said...

I would have been thrilled with that too, anonymous one, even though I failed to mention it ... Any script that can make me laugh that hard throughout is a winner in my book