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Sunday, January 30, 2011


I just spent the last hour soaking in the tub while reading the latest edition of Entertainment Weekly from cover to cover.  It is the issue devoted to all things Oscar, that most coveted piece of American produced hardware; the ultimate trophy.  Every year at this time, my attention is riveted to Hollywood and all that glamour. Academy Award night is the one night a year where I watch television for six hours straight.  Don’t even try to call me; I won’t answer the phone.  I may tweet a bit or stop by Facebook to see what kind of snarky remarks my clever friends may make, but that’s it. Oscar and the fashion cavalcade command all my attention.

I must admit that the prognostication of winners by the entertainment writers and editors who probably have not seen all of the films seems a bit presumptuous to me. It clearly doesn’t stop any of the news outlets in fact, from having an opinion about the films and who deserves and will win. I can do just as good a job of judging that which I have not seen and so I will. 

For the purposes of brevity, I will only comment on the films nominated for best picture.  I will divulge to my readers which films I have seen or not and suggest that none of my commentary or evaluations be used for determining how to vote in your local Oscar pool if you are actually interested in winning.  My projections are for entertainment purposes only. 


To be clear, I don’t want to see this movie.  To see where someone has put their arms where it doesn’t belong will remind me too much of the times I put my mouth in places it doesn’t belong, as in – Oops! That just fell out of my mouth -- I shouldn’t have said that.  I also just don’t think this is going to win because Danny Boyle won last year for the fabulous Slumdog Millionaire and he’s not going to win with this one. It wasn’t even shot overseas.


A film about a bunch of crazy ladies makes me crazy and feels eerily familiar to me.  I like the idea of another ballerina based movie being recognized since The Turning Point with looney Shirley Maclaine and feisty Anne Bancroft was just annoying. Billy Elliot was about a young man so it doesn’t really count, but I don’t think it has the gravitas to win. 


For the spinning hallways and dizzying plot, this kaleidoscope of a film kept me guessing, mostly about how this movie could possibly end. The notion of invading dreams was a swell one. Avatar, or as we call it in our house, Dances with Wolves meets Pocahontas in Fern Gully, won three (Art Direction, Cinematography and Visual Effects), and I think this film should do at least as well. The director, grumpy Christopher Nolan, isn’t nominated so I don’t think it can take Best Picture. 


When Marky Mark became Mark Wahlberg and ditched his Calvin’s, he was making a very smart move. As a young man, Mr. Wahlberg was charged with attempted murder, pleaded guilty to assault, and was sentenced to two years in jail, of which he served 45 days. He’s obviously figured out how to channel all that aggression. I personally find Mark to be a very reliable actor. I even saw M.Night’s awful The Happening and while it was a really bad movie, Mark tried his best to make it work. Christian Bale is no softy either. It’s hard to believe he’s Australian after you see him in this movie. Melissa Leo has been a personal favorite of mine since her Homicide days. The big surprise in this cast is Amy Adams. But it’s another Boston Movie and the win for Scorcese’s The Departed was too recent for this to take Oscar home.  


There are lots of complaints this year about how there are no Academy Award nominees of color but what about Lesbians?  How long have they been neglected in Hollywood? 
Alternative families are all around me in my neighborhood so I think it’s great that Hollywood finally caught on. I loved this movie and wrote about it in a earlier blog entitled: Gene pool, Cesspool—The Kids are All Right.  I think Annette Bening should win for her performance but I don’t think the film has the technical or historical drama to carry the day. 

If you would like to read more about this film and then some, please go to:


Colin Firth is completely adorable and is the closest to being named my make believe boyfriend of all the film nominees (Sorry George, but you’re not in a nominated film this year.) and so it would be really terrific if this movie wins. Geoffrey Rush is always brilliant and Helena Bonham Carter is absolutely my favorite. She’s beautiful and wacky. If she knew me, we would be great friends. It has the-real-story historical-person-faced-with-personal-adversity going for it. Also, a British accent gives this movie points because it makes everyone sound so such much more intelligent than most Americans even when they stammer. 


I like playing on Facebook so I’m not all that surprised that someone decided it would make great fodder for a film.  Since this is the only movie nominated this year with a cast that includes minorities (How could you shoot at Harvard without Asians?) it gives this film, in an all white year, additional points.  Aaron Sorkin is as smart as David Mamet and then some so while I haven’t seen the movie yet, I think it’s a real contender. By the way, if you haven’t seen the South Park episode about Facebook, you should.  


I love Woody.  He’s the best male role model for young men out of Hollywood this year. He has heart, smarts and wears blue jeans without the sag. His buddy Buzz Lightyear shows how men can be friends without getting all soupy about it. It is a great celebration of Man-love of the highest order and the story and animation and performances are first rate. I’ve seen all three of these films and they just kept getting better and better, the opposite of most sequels (remember Godfather III?) and for that alone it should win something but since a friendship like this could only exist in cartoonland and Hollywood has never awarded an animated film the best picture award, the film makers will have to be content with best song -- because I love Randy Newman. 


The Coen brothers don’t want to win for this one so they won’t.  They don’t want to become part of the Hollywood mainstream and even though this film has made more money than any other of their films, it was also rated PG-13.  They seem to be more suited to R rated genre. I think they want to remain outside and edgy and we like them there. 


Since I live in the Northeast and have been snowed in and going stir crazy so there is no way I would vote for a film with Winter in the title.  Ask me about this in the Spring, maybe after I’ve actually seen the movie and we don't have all this snow.

So that’s my rundown for this year’s Oscar Best Picture nominations. Please feel free to submit your own projections. Everyone can and does do it. 


  1. Love this post. And the Legos win for best artistic expression.

  2. good one, Carol! Of course, I live in LaLa land and all things Oscar is what this town is about until the actual day of announcement. Personally, I'm all about The Fighter.. it had heart and it was real. Javier should win for Biutiful, but since it's a foreign film, nobody who's voting will see it, so Colin Firth will get it.
    Natalie Portman ( young) or last-chance Annette? Probably Annette.
    I hope George Clooney wins for.. oh wait, he's not nominated. I hope he wins anyway.