Tonight’s Winners, Yesterday!
February 25, 2007
I believe John Cheever put it best when he wrote, “It was one of those midsummer Sundays when everyone sits around saying, ‘I drank too much last night.'” Well, it may not be midsummer yet, but I’ve certainly been saying that all day. Or rather just the part of the day when I’ve been awake. My dreams involved lollipops.
A ways back, before the Academy Awards nominations were announced, I invented a formula to try and predict the nominees. It went reasonably well, getting 4/5 best picture slots. I was going to come up with a formula to pick the actual winners of the major awards, but I got distracted (probably those lollipops again) and I haven’t put any background research into this. Amazingly, I also haven’t read any one else’s predictions. So here are my predictions for the major categories, totally devoid of study.
Cinematography: Children of Men
Foreign Film: Pan’s Labyrinth
Original Screenplay: Little Miss Sunshine. The “edgy” or “quirky” comedic films always get this award, whether they’re Pulp Fiction or Lost in Translation.
Adapted Screenplay: The Departed (start seeing a pattern)
S. Actor: Hudson, Dreamgirls. I think she’s still got a lock on this. My basic rule for this category is to pick the actress you most want to sleep with (see: Kim Bassinger, Angelina Jolie, Rachel Weisz, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Jennifer Connely), but the hype for Hudson seems to be too great to overcome. Besides, maybe the Academy likes ’em a little thick. I think that Abigail Breslin has the best chance of upsetting (see: Anna Paquin for evidence of the Academy’s pedophilia), especially in the event of a Little Miss Sunshine sweep (unlikely, but not out of the realm of possibility).
S. Actor: Eddie Murphy, Dreamgirls. Although “Norbit”‘ probably cost him a lot of the good will he’d made for himself with Dreamgirls, the movie was released too late to really hurt Mr. Murphy. He has all the makings of a classic “reclamation” candidate, like Martin Landau in “Ed Wood,” or Chris Carpenter winning the Cy Young. Again, watch out for Arkin in an LMS sweep.
Actress: Hellen Mirren, The Queen. Probably the best slate of best actress candidates I’ve seen in a long time, and with so many juicy rolls. You could make a good case for all of them, and it’s hard not to bet on Dame Dench, but Queen’s are highest in the peerage system and that’s as good a reason as any.
Actor: Forrest Whitaker, Last King of Scotland. While I don’t know how many people say this movie, everyone just KNOWS Whitaker was great, giving a world-shattering performance. I think DiCaprio has the best chance for an upset, given that he’s really nominated for his 2 terrific performances this year, and not just Blood Diamond. Also, the strength of “The Departed” may help carry him through.
Director: Clint–No, Martin Scorsese, The Departed. Sure he’s made better movies, but he hasn’t won for them. Sure the Departed was flawed, but that’s what happens when you turn a trilogy of crazy Hong Kong action movies into 1 American gangster picture. This movie was really a genre picture, yet Scorsese made it into something else.
Picture: The Departed. I think LMS has the best chance of pulling an upset (thus leading to all those crazy acting awards). In a year where no film really dominated, the charm of a quirky comedy could be enough to give it a victory. I still think it’ll go to the Departed, but I wouldn’t be too surprised if it went to someone else.