Friday, February 24, 2012

The WWW's Oscars® 'Big Six' Cheat Sheet

After dissecting the slew of "smaller" awards on Thursday, it's time to dish on the Oscars that have flash, the 'Big Six': Best Picture, Director, Actor, Actress and the two Supporting trophies. Having personally seen all of the Best Picture nominees and 98% of all the films nominated, here come your locks as follows:

The winner listed in Oscar gold
My fave
Who got jobbed
Who has no business in the building
Nominees listed 1-5 (or 9) according to strength
My analysis

Best Picture
(My reviews linked)

The Oscar goes to: The Artist
Erick's fave: Drive (not nominated)
Got jobbed: Drive
Have no business in the building: Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close and War Horse
  1. The Artist
  2. The Descendants 
  3. The Help 
  4. Hugo
  5. Midnight in Paris                                                                                                                                                  
  6. The Tree of Life
  7. Moneyball 
  8. War Horse
  9. Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close
E's analysis: After attending an early screening of 'The Artist' back in November, my initial reaction was that it's an immensely entertaining movie but certainly not the "Best Picture" of 2011. But that's what 'The Artist' is about to be crowned; it's the colossal front-runner with only 'The Descendants' and perhaps 'The Help' having an outside, outside, outside shot of stealing it. 'Drive' is in my estimation the finest film of 2011, it's more of an overall achievement than any of the movies listed above. The fact it wasn't nominated is unconscionable.

Best Actor

The Oscar goes to: George Clooney
Erick's fave: George Clooney
Got jobbed: Leonardo DiCaprio 
Has no business in the building: Brad Pitt
  1. Jean Dujardin (The Artist)
  2. George Clooney (The Descendants)
  3. Brad Pitt (Moneyball)
  4. Gary Oldman (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy)
  5. Demian Bichir (A Better Life)
E's analysis: Clooney grabbed the Golden Globe but Dujardin scored the SAG - this is going to be one of the closest votes ever. While Dujardin was a whimsical wonder, Clooney captures my vote courtesy of his earth-moving monologue to his comatose wife. Pitt may have deserved a nomination but it was for 'The Tree of Life' not 'Moneyball'.

    Best Actress

    The Oscar goes to: Viola Davis 
    Erick's fave: Meryl Streep
    Got jobbed: Possibly Tilda Swinton
    Has no business in the building: None
    1. Viola Davis (The Help)
    2. Meryl Streep (The Iron Lady)
    3. Michelle Williams (My Week With Marilyn)
    4. Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs)
    5. Rooney Mara (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo)
    E's analysis: In a just world, it would be Streep and everyone else but Davis will take it. Not that Davis is undeserving, but Streep's performance was utterly hypnotizing - a spellbinding tour de force as Britain's ex-PM.

    Best Supporting Actor

    The Oscar goes to: Christopher Plummer
    Erick's fave: Albert Brooks (not nominated)
    Got jobbed: Albert Brooks
    Has no business in the building: Max von Sydow
    1. Christopher Plummer (Beginners)
    2. Kenneth Branagh (My Week with Marilyn)
    3. Jonah Hill (Moneyball)
    4. Nick Nolte (Warrior)
    5. Max von Sydow (Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close)
    E's analysis: Brooks omission was the most glaring of all the acting nominations, his mobster role in 'Drive' was the finest supporting performance of 2011 but Plummer was always the winner here playing a terminally ill gay parent. How von Sydow got a nom is beyond me - his barely present, mute character wrote his words on 4x6 notecards in one of the most embarrassing "Best Picture" nominees ever.
      Best Supporting Actress

      The Oscar goes to: Octavia Spencer
      Erick's fave: Octavia Spencer
      Got jobbed: Shailene Woodley
      Has no business in the building: None
      1. Octavia Spencer (The Help)
      2. Berenice Bejo (The Artist)
      3. Jessica Chastain (The Help)
      4. Janet McTeer (Albert Nobbs)
      5. Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids)
      E's analysis: This is straight up Spencer and the four other nominees - just like Plummer, she's preordained. Woodley was spectacular in 'The Descendants'; without question a top five performance. Chastain's nomination should have been for 'The Tree of Life' not 'The Help'.

      Best Director

      The winner: Michel Hazanavicius
      Erick's fave: Martin Scorsese
      Got jobbed: Nicolas Winding Refn
      Has no business in the building: None
      1. Michel Hazanavicius (The Artist)
      2. Martin Scorsese (Hugo)
      3. Alexander Payne (The Descendants)
      4. Woody Allen (Midnight in Paris)
      5. Terrence Malick (The Tree of Life)
      E's analysis: Hazanavicius is the overwhelmingly popular pick but Scorsese scored the Golden Globe and will get the sentimental vote. Refn delivered a masterpiece that was deemed too violent for the voters' tastes - thus the felonious non-nomination.