Sunday, February 22, 2009

Oscar picks 09

Another year, another "Oscar the Grouch" headline in the Winnipeg Free Press, along with the other 10,000 pages that come up when you Google "oscar the grouch nominations." Confession: I used the same headline 100 years ago when I was entertainment editor of the Projector - and, yes, it was a cliche then too.

I used to also have a big Oscar apartment party every year; I won the pool every year, except the last one, at which time I canceled all future parties - in the same spirit of "It's my ball, and if I can't win, then I'm going to take it home. Nyeah, nyeah."

One year, I also won Movie Village's Oscar contest, and got a free rental every day for a year. Well, that was the prize, but I only ever cashed in about 10 of them. It was bad enough that the people working there called me "the Movie Village Guy."

Last night, I watched Milk, the Wrestler, and Slumdog Millionaire in a row, and I can therefore pronounce Milk the least watchable of (all?) the nominees. "First Milk did this, then he did that, then he did this, then he did that..."Zzzzzz..

The other problem I had with Milk is that it seems like a gay-liberation movie for people who don't know that gay people have been liberated. I can imagine my grandmother watching the film, and congratulating herself at the end for supporting gay rights.

That said, the Wrestler and Slumdog rule. And it was nice to see that Danny Boyle snuck in his signature scene, which he pioneered in Trainspotting: the dirty toilet that our hero must fall into in order to a) gross us out, b) make us laugh, and c) advance the story. More dirty toilets, Danny. More!

So, let's see how I do with my Oscar picks this year. If I get more than half, next year the party's back on!

Actor in a leading role
Mickey Rourke

Actor in a supporting role
Heath Ledger

Actress in a leading role
Kate Winslet

Actress in a supporting role
Penelope Cruz

Best picture
Slumdog Millionaire

Animated film

Art direction
The Dark Knight

Slumdog Millionaire

Costume design
The Duchess

Man on Wire

Danny Boyle, Slumdog Millionaire

Slumdog Millionaire

Foreign film
I haven't seen any, but I'll guess "The Class," based on its country of origin and subject matter. And, I'll also say that it's my belief that the best foreign film of each year is actually the best film of each year.

The Dark Knight

Musical score
Slumdog Millionaire - for the musical number at the end alone.

Jai Ho, Slumdog Millionaire, for the same reason as above.

Visual effects
Benjamin Button

Sound and sound mixing
The Dark Knight

Adapted screenplay
Slumdog Millionaire

I'm going to take a big chance here on WALL-E.

And to Hell with the documentary and animated shorts. They're the deciding categories in every year's Oscar pool, because no one has seen them, or ever will. Yes, I'm bitter.

Enjoy the show!

1 comment:

  1. I won that Movie Village thing one year as well. My prize was that I could take out any three catalogue movies for a one year period of time (in other words, I could pick three movies, watch them, pick three more, etc. etc. an unlimited number of times).

    I watched a hell of a lot of movies, but hit rock bottom when I picked up Liz Taylor's "The Driver's Seat."


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