Friday, March 5, 2010
Handicapping the Oscars
ROBERTA: The Academy Awards are coming this weekend! I don't pretend to be a movie expert--I haven't even seen all the nominees. But I won't let that stop me from having opinions... Here they are:
Best actor: I did like George Clooney in UP IN THE AIR, but in the end he couldn't hold a candle to the dissipated country music star played by Jeff Bridges in CRAZY HEART. I'll be disappointed if Bridges doesn't get it.
Best actress: As with Clooney, I admired Sandra Bullock in THE BLIND SIDE--and I haven't liked much of what she's done lately. But she was overshadowed by Meryl Streep in JULIE AND JULIA and Gabourey Sidibe in PRECIOUS (astonishing movie!) I have to go with Streep for her chameleon-like performance as Julia Child.
Best supporting actress: this has to go to Mo'Nique in PRECIOUS. Was she not one of the most terrifying mothers ever played on film?
Best picture: PRECIOUS
I had the chance to see both the animated and the live action shorts. The word this year is DARK. My goodness, is anything wrong with a nice romance? Anyway, I'd vote for THE NEW TENANTS in the live action division--dark as all get-out, but a measure of black humor thrown in.
JAN: Live action division??? There's a live action division?? That shows you how long its been since I've sat down and watched the Oscars. You can't trust any nomination from me because I just nominate the actors from the movies I've happened to have seen. But given, that, I'll vote for Meryl Streep as Julia Child.
HANK: Um, well, um. I'm usually the big movie person, but this year I'm pitifully out of the loop. (Can we talk about, maybe, Lawrence of Arabia? Okay, not that bad. But..) Anyway, we did see Up in the Air, I think it was the movie we saw last year--and I loved it. I think the actress who played the young trainee was terrific (she's nominated, right?), and Vera Farmiga was wonderfull too. And whoever wrote the screenplay. And the director.
And I can't imagine how Geroge Clooney must feel--I mean, wasn't he a shoo-in until Jeff Bridges?
HALLIE: I've been hanging out under the same rock as Hank. Did see Julie and Julia and thought La Streep was amazing. Saw AVATAR (just this past weekend) which I thoroughly enjoyed but would so NOT award it best picture. Its "Transformers go to war" ending was predictable and loud and endless. I also saw SERIOUS MAN which I hated. Hated. HATED. Sigh. I'm still catching up on last year's (loved The Wrestler - Mickey Rourke was astonishing; also Sean Penn's Milk).
RHYS: I've just realized how out of the loop I am. I saw Julie and Julia, and adored it. Meryl Streep is the person I most want as my friend. She seems funny and witty and brilliant and I know I'd never be bored with her. Whats' more she's my age and she looks fantastic! I thought I was going to have to suffer through Avatar, but avoided it. And why do movies always have to be so loud. I have super sensitive hearing and can't endure most action movies.
Apart from those the only movies I saw this year were feel-good, or kids, or foreign with my friends movie-group. I liked Coco before Chanel.
This year I promise to be a better movie-goer. And one exciting side bar. My son gets to sing at an Oscar Party in LA. He's hoping it will lead to wonderful things.
RO: I like to watch. No...I'm not channeling Peter Sellers in Being There. I'm talking Oscars! I always watch. And I stay up until the bitter end, because after all if you've slogged through the boring bits you want to stick around for the payoff, right?
This year I haven't seen many of the nominated movies..as of this writing..An Education, Hurt Locker and Crazy Heart. I just don't get out much anymore (!) That won't stop me from plunking down my twenty bucks and entering the Oscar pool at a party I've been going to for the last fifteen years. (I never would have guessed it's been that long but remarkably I still have the $25 Gift Book from City Cinemas Theatres that I won at the party in 1997. I haven't won since. I guess it's like most awards...there are the people you think should win and the people you think WILL win.
Here are my picks for the majors...
and this is my longshot..Stanley Tucci. This is borne out of pure fan geekdom. I adore Stanley Tucci.
ROBERTA: Okay so for JRW, Meryl Streep is a shoo-in. How about you JRreaders? Do you like to watch? Have a favorite?