Friday, 22 February 2008

Just Brilliant!!!

The Best Actress Race

As much as I admire Cate Blanchett (apparently it is pronounced a bland shit, but with a 'c' and drop the 'd') neither of her performances impressed me much so she is not going to win for "Elizabeth: The Golden Age" and if she does woe betide any Academy member who crosses my path

Laura Linney is one of the most reliable character actresses working, and she never fails to bring truth and depth to any character. It is as though she is not actually acting and this is why she is not going to win this year. People like to see their acting.

She was cute a quirky and unless the final two spilt votes she is not going to sneak in. Ellen Page is likely to be winning one of her own in the near future and I for one am excited about seeing what she does.

Everyone loves Julie Christie, and she was divine in "Away From Her" and she is very likely going to win this award, but she is not my pick out of the nominees. When she wins it will be bitter sweet as there was a better female performance this year.

And it was by Marion Cotillard in "La Vie En Rose". I remember watching loads of documentaries in Piaf while in Uni, and although I was not overly familiar with her life she did make a impact on my tastes. While I find the film greatly flawed I think Marion completely overcomes the 'mimicry' gimmick and delves deep into a passionate, talented and self destructive woman. Some say the make up helped, but she transcended the make up and seemed to age on the screen in front of my eyes. I am still awed by how she did this. It is surely one of the years most amazing special effects. She is heads above the other nominees.

Thursday, 21 February 2008


I love the fact that talent is still allowed to shine in this world of meaningless pop.

Tuesday, 19 February 2008

"The Visitor" trailer

Well the whole film is in the trailer, but still it made my eyes mist over a little. Looks like it could be a little film that could. Wait and see.

Best Supporting Actress Analysis.

This is the widest open race of the night. Any one of these women could walk away with the prize.
Who will it be?

Cate Blanchett

For her:
- The performance is highly praised by some.
- She is an Academy favourite.
- The Academy loves lazy voting and portraying real life people takes the thought away from performance appreciation (in short - Bio Pics rule when it comes to awards).
- Hollywood Glamour

Against her:
- She has a recent win.
- Double female nominees have not won in either category lately. (I think Holly Hunter was the last one)
- The film is a head scratcher for A LOT of people.
- She is not American. Most of the front runners in the other 3 acting categories are non-Americans. I do not think it will be a clean sweep for foreign actors. You may not think it, but the Oscars is a very American award ceremony.

Ruby Dee

For her:
- She is an un-rewarded legend.
- The Actors guild loved her enough to give her the award, and they are the largest voting block in the Academy. Besides those who saw her up on that SAG stage may have had their heart strings tugged.
- It is easier for a lot of people to vote for someone's career than a single performance.
- She is one of the most memorable things in a well regarded film (she gives you a jolt!)
- She is the only actor of colour nominated.
- She is American.

Against her:
- Her screen time is short (too short say some.)
- Until SAG she had no real traction.
- Atonement...does the Academy like to acknowledge past mistakes?

Saiorse Ronan

For her:
- This is, historically, the kindest category for younger actors.
- She is a stand out in her film, in a very difficult role which she pulls off.
- Her film is nominated for Best Picture.
- She was cast in Peter Jackson's sure to be epic "The Lovely Bones", her buzz as an actress is huge.

Against her:
- She was cast in "The Lovely Bones". If she is as good as we suspect, she may be back in the lead category in a few years and can wait until then.
- She had no traction coming into the race, aside from the Golden Globe nomination.
- Her character is unlikable.
- She is not American.

Amy Ryan

For her:
- The critics went ga ga over her performance, and she has won just about everything in site.
- Horrible mothers are a supporting actress arch-type role.
- She is a respected Broadway Actress.
- She uglified for the role, although how much impact it will have in not clear as she is largely an unknown.
- She is American

Against her:
- She lost the SAG and Golden Globe, there does not seem to be a large amount of support in the industry.
- Her film was not nominated elsewhere.
- Some (like me) were not impressed, and second viewings may highlight some performance problems.

Tilda Swinton

For her:
- She deserves it
- She is a well respected actress
- She has across the board support and a BAFTA win.
- She is in a film nominated for Best Picture.
- Every Best Picture nominee is likely to win at least one award. Here is more likely than a win in screenplay.

Against her:
- She is not American
- Her personal life and fashion sense may not win her any fans from a largely conservative Academy membership

Final thoughts: I think it is a three way race between Blanchett, Dee and Swinton. I am seriously expecting Ruby Dee to pull a Marcia Gay Harden and win the thing, although I can see a last minute surge for Swinton if those who love the film place all their votes in this category where a win is most likely.

Final result….I expect Ruby Dee to win for a wonderful and largely ignored career.

Monday, 18 February 2008

Listy McList

Seven things I am so hating about this Oscar season.

1) The lack of a nail biter finish. I want my categories up in the air. None of this category lock 3 months before the awards.

2) The anti "Juno" voices. Every year it is the same thing. People go on and on about comedies not getting a fair shot in either the performances, or the acting categories at the Oscars, which is true. Then a comedy film comes along and gets the nomination and the backlash starts. This year it is "Juno" and last year it was "Little Miss Sunshine". Stop being a bunch of snobs and enjoy being able to laugh.

3) Again with "Juno". All those people going around saying she is nothing but a smart mouthed know it all who is all slang and quirky sayings, and that is not representative of any teenagers they know. Wake up and look around. They are everywhere. Just because we do not talk like that does not mean it does not happen. I am sure if cameras followed you around you would have your own unique voice. Stop the hating! (If you read the screenplay there are plenty of clever clues to let you in on just how uninformed Juno is).

4) The Foreign Film category. Not that I have seen the five nominated, and I am sure they are deserved nominations, but come on!!! "Persepolis", "El Orfanato" and "4 luni, 3 saptamani si 2 zile" and ignored! A CRIME!

5) People calling there will be blood a classic. Not to knock the film at all, but don't you need a little time to pass before you start crowning movies classics?

6) The Cate Blanchett love (at Angelina's expense). Why does the Academy just give her an Oscar shaped vibrator?

7) The fact that I am pretty sure we may have to sit through another ceremony where they cut down the best part of the show. The acting clips. For Madonna's sake just show a nice 5 to 10 second clip of the performances. Not this brief glimpse we got last year (I swear it was only one second). If they wanna cut down the running time, make the presenters walk shorter.

Rant over.