Monday, February 28, 2011

THE DAY AFTER



Wow, people have a lot to say about the Academy Awards last night. It is getting mixed reviews. Some thought it was new and fresh, others thought it was horrible and aren't holding back. Roger Ebert twittered that it was "The worst Oscarcast I've seen, and I go back awhile. Some great winners, a nice distribution of awards, but the show? Dead. In. The. Water." I wouldn't go that far, but here my observations and some notes about the show:

-I usually hate the red carpet part. I have no interest in what people are wearing. ( I was wearing Nike) But ABC's 90 minute Red Carpet show wasn't too bad. It flowed well and there seemed to be may taped interviews as to avoid the awkwardness of trying to get peoples attention.

-Early news indicates that the ratings were down 7% from last year.

-People think Franco was high out of his mind. That may be the case, but he is usually pretty laid back. Hathoway held her own and I thought the 2 had good chemistry. Not too many jokes throughout the show, but the open with Franco and Hathoway inserted into some of the Best Picture films was enjoyable.

-When Kirk Douglas came out it was a little uncomfortable at first, but he ended up being one of the best parts of the show. He should host next year, although that might make for an 8 hour show.

-Everyone is talking about Melissa Leo's "fucking easy" comment. What is the big deal? Why is everyone so afraid of that word. It is real life...let it go!

-Speaking of Melissa Leo. Great actress, but her speech was awkward and all over the place. It did seem like she was making fun of Douglas by walking out with his cane.

-Best Speech was Randy Newman.

-Corey Haim was not a big enough movie star to include in the "in memoriam" montage?  Or because he died under questionable circumstances?

-Not one person thanked God.

-Interesting note...THE WOLFMAN has more Oscars than WINTER'S BONE, TRUE GRIT, 127 HOURS and THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT.

STAY TUNED...




It is 2am so I will write my thoughts on the big show Monday morning, but:

-Just read a rumor that Franco was high out of his mind during the show.

-He just tweeted a picture of himself on a plane flying back to Connecticut. He has class in the morning!


Here is a list of all the winners from Sunday Night. I picked 17 correct out of the 24 categories. That is about 71% correct. I thought that I would do a little better.  The ALICE IN WONDERLAND wins were surprising along with Tom Hooper for Director. Below are the winners. The stars are the categories I correctly predicted:


*Best Picture: The King’s Speech*Best Actress: Natalie Portman, Black Swan
*Best Actor: Colin Firth, The King’s Speech
Best Director: Tom Hooper, The King’s Speech
*Best Adapted Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, The Social Network
*Best Original Screenplay: David Seidler, The King’s Speech
*Best Animated Feature: Toy Story 3
*Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo, The Fighter
*Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale, The Fighter
*Best Editing: Angus Wall, Kirk Baxter, The Social Network
Best Cinematography: Wally Pfister, Inception
*Best Original Score: Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, The Social Network
Best Art Direction: Alice in Wonderland
Best Costume Design: Alice in Wonderland
*Best Visual Effects: Inception
*Best Make-Up: The Wolfman
*Best Sound Mixing: Inception
*Best Sound Editing: Inception
*Best Song: We Belong Together, Toy Story 3, Randy Newman
*Best Documentary Short: Strangers No More
Best Live Action Short: God of Love
Best Animated Short: The Lost Thing
Best Foreign Language Film: In a Better World, Denmark
*Best Documentary: Inside Job

Sunday, February 27, 2011

ANOTHER YEAR



I don't mean the awards year I mean the movie ANOTHER YEAR.  In my mad rush to see as many movies as I can by tonight, I saw ANOTHER YEAR last night. It is nominated for only one Academy Award for Best Screenplay. It is not going to win over THE KING'S SPEECH and the story is only so-so. It is about 
a married couple who have managed to remain happy into their autumn years. They are surrounded over the course of the four seasons of one average year by friends, colleagues, and family who all seem to suffer some degree of unhappiness. Leslie Manville steals the show. She was certainly snubbed from this years Best Supporting Actress category. If anything I recommend this movie for Manville's performance as a neurotic woman bordering on being an alcoholic. She doesn't have to say a word. The pain in her eyes is unmistakable.

MY GRADE: B-
Manville: A+

INDIE SPIRIT AWARDS




Last night the Indie Spirit Awards were held. As a fan of independent films I enjoyed this awards show. It was not a formal event, it took place under a tent, it was not censored and the winners were allowed to speak as along as they wanted. It was only 2 hours long. I think that The Oscars can learn a few things from the Indies. Here is a list of the winners:

Best Picture: Black Swan
Best Director: Darren Aronofsky, Black Swan
Best Actress: Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Best Actor: James Franco, 127 Hours
Best Supporting Actress: Dale Dickey, Winters Bone
Best Supporting Male: John Hawkes, Winter’s Bone
Best Screenplay: The Kids Are All Right
Best Cinematography: Matthew Libatique, Black Swan
Best Documentary: Exit Through the Gift Shop
Best Foreign Film: The King’s Speech
Best First Feature: Get Low
Best First Screenplay: Lena Dunham, Tiny Furniture
Truer Than Fiction Award: Marwencol, Jeff Malmberg
Someone to Watch Award: Mike Ott, Littlerock
Producers Award: Anish Savjani, Meek’s Cutoff
Robert Altman Award (ensemble): Please Give
Cassavetes Award: Daddy Longlegs

Saturday, February 26, 2011

FINAL THOUGHTS



Well today is the last full day before the Academy Awards.  For the last 3 years or so I have tried to see and predict the Oscar winners. This is the first year that I began looking into it so early in the year. I really started thinking about it August and started this blog September 12th. A lot has happened since then. Many movies were being thrown around in August as having Oscar potential and most of them either had bad reviews, poor box office results or just not enough money or backing to campaign. I think that everyone agrees that it is a political game and the best movies of the year don't always win. The Academy is perceived as old and out of touch with the current times. This will be realized if THE KING'S SPEECH wins out over THE SOCIAL NETWORK.  Here is a quick review of the last year:

*THE SOCIAL NETWORK vs. THE KING'S SPEECH-In the beginning THE NETWORK was being called the best movie ever made and was guaranteed to win Best Picture. It was winning every critics award and everyone was talking about it. Then came THE SPEECH. All of a sudden it began winning all of the guild awards and quickly moved to the top of the list.

*I thought for sure I'M STILL HERE, CLIENT 9 and WAITING FOR SUPERMAN would be nominated for Best Documentary. None of them made the cut.

*There was talk of Tyler Perry getting a nomination for THE COLORED GIRLS. The movie had horrible reviews and didn't make any money.

*We all thought that THE TOWN had all the makings of a Best Picture and Director nomination, but Jeremy Renner is the only one to come out if it.

*What ever happened to CONVICTION?

*One of my favorite movies of the year LET ME IN had a lot of early praise, but not many saw it and it is a horror film.

Many critics and bloggers this year have said that it was an ugly year and they can't wait for it to all be over. I too am ready for the winners to be announced and then start looking into next year.

p.s. I am seeing a lot of changes to Best Supporting Actress picks. I am sticking with Melissa Leo. See all my picks in MY 2011 PREDICTIONS page.

Friday, February 25, 2011

FRANCO'S VIEW



James Franco just tweeted his view from the stage of the Kodak Theater. I always enjoy the pictures in the seats for rehearsal.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

PRINTABLE OSCAR BALLOT




I was going to create my own printabel Oscar ballot, but I found this one through Fandango that I like. Fell free to print it out, mark your picks and follow along Sunday night.

I have been reading about a lot of predictors changing their picks to compensate from some surprises. I am not changing anything and going with my original pics. We will see how that turns out.



PRINTABLE OSCAR BALLOT

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

BALLOTS DUE TODAY


Sample Ballot



The Oscar Ballots are due today by 5pm at PricewaterhouseCoopers Office in Los Angeles. The campaigning is over and time to count the votes. Much of the counting process is kept secret, but here is a little bit of how the votes are counted. Each panel of the ballot is torn off and staffers count the votes for each category. After that only 2 people look over the results and by the end of the day Thursday they will be the only people that know the results. Friday envelopes are prepared for every conceivable winner as to not leak any information. Then the set of envelopes with the winners are prepared by the 2 partners and the rest are destroyed. Then Sunday night the envelopes are opened. Hopefully the right ones.

Monday, February 21, 2011

OSCAR APPS



Each year with the advancement in technology comes more ways to interact with the Academy Awards. There are some pretty good Apps this year. Here are some courtesy of Appolicious:


A good place to start is The Academy’s own The Oscars app (free). It is broken down into two main categories: The Academy and The Oscars. In The Academy section you will find related news, photos and video. It also has a fabulous database of past winners which can be searched by category or decade. Do you want to know who won for best actor in a leading role in 1952? You can find it in the database: Gary Cooper for his role in High Noon.

If you are the opinionated type, then you must be dying to put in your two cents with a vote. The Vanity Fair Hollywood: Oscars Edition app (free) allows users to vote in 27 categories. It probably includes the ones you barely know anything about, like “Achievement in Makeup,” too. Download this app, and you’ll have a shot at winning a free trip for two to Los Angeles.

The Awards Guide: The Oscars app (free) also allows you to vote for your favorite film, or actors and actresses. And this app shows real-time voting results, so you can know where your top picks stand. The app also includes a nice feature wherein users can see not only past Oscar winners, but also how many times an individual was nominated and for what. This is a great feature, given that some of the best films ever made were overlooked by Academy voters.
For the very best in movie history, check out the Oscars History app ($1.99). It includes a great trivia game with questions like “Who was the youngest winner of an acting award? (from Paper Moon, 1973).” It was Tatum O’Neal at 10-years old.

As lovely as they are, we all know that the Oscars aren’t just about the movies. Built around it is an entire industry of parties, red carpet events, stylists and lots of very expensive fashion. Day-after analysis often includes as much talk about sartorial decisions as it does about who went home with the little bronze statues. That is why the Live From the Red Carpet app (free) is an absolute must-have. From the one-shoulder dresses to the Christian Louboutins, it’s all there.

Friday, February 18, 2011

BEST PICTURE BOX OFFICE



I thought that it would be interesting to see how the 10 Best Picture nominated films performed at the Box Office domestically.

127 Hours: $17.0 million
Black Swan: $100.2 million
Inception: $292.5 million
The Fighter: $86.4 million
The Kids Are All Right: $20.8 million
The King's Speech: $96.7 million
The Social Network: $96.6 million
Toy Story 3: $414.9 million
True Grit: $161.7 million
Winter's Bone: $6.4 million

TOY STORY 3 was the highest grossing film of 2010.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

MY TOP 10





I really haven't seen many movie this year outside of the Oscar contenders. I got a late start, but I think that there are some films that I saw that did not get their due, so here is my top favorites of 2010 in order:

1. THE SOCIAL NETWORK
2. INCEPTION
3. THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT
4 THE FIGHTER
5. THE KING'S SPEECH
6. LET ME IN
7. BLACK SWAN
8. RABBIT HOLE
9. BLUE VALENTINE
10. SHUTTER ISLAND

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

NEW ENVELOPE!!

Source: AP

For the last 70 years the Oscar envelope was just a white envelope that you could get at Staples. This year a new envelope was designed. The article from the AP says, "The idea of the envelope was created by the Oscars, so this really is THE envelope," says Steve Bass, the production designer for this year's show who helped usher in a new envelope era. "It made so much sense to heighten the visual experience of what the envelope is."
The new envelope, designed by Marc Friedland, is made of iridescent gold paper watermarked with little images of Oscar. It's lined with shiny red paper embossed with gold Oscars. The winner's name appears on a heavy piece of lacquered red paper inside, with the category listed on front and back. The envelope will be sealed with a shiny red sticker adorned with two strips of red ribbon."

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

SOME SURPRISES?

Although I am sticking with my predictions there could be a few surprises. Here are some examples:

THE SOCIAL NETWORK wins Best Picture-Very unlikely, but it really is the better film.  It's hard to bet against THE KING'S SPEECH, but there are a lot of critics and bloggers who are not happy about THE SPEECH being the winner.

Tom Hooper wins over David Fincher-Again THE KINGS SPEECH has the most nominations and going to win Best Picture. It could mean a win for Hopper as Director.

Bening wins over Portman-Everyone in the Academy loves Annette Bening. This is her 4th nomination and she has never won. This could be a way to recognize her entire body of work. Natalie Portman does not seem to have a sense of humor and when asked questions about anything but BLACK SWAN she gets annoyed. This could hurt her.

Geoffrey Rush wins over Christian Bale-THE KINGS SPEECH could sweep this year and Rush may be pulling ahead of Bale. Rush has been campaigning while Bale has kept a low profile.

Hailee Steinfeld over Melissa Leo-This may be the only place that the Academy can award TRUE GRIT for anything. Leo definitely puts on the better performance, but her decision to campaign on her own could hurt her.

Monday, February 14, 2011

BAFTA WINNERS




Best Film – The King’s Speech
Best Director – The Social Network – David Fincher
Best Leading Actress – Natalie Portman – Black Swan
Best Leading Actor – Colin Firth – The King’s Speech
Best Supporting Actress – Helena Bonham Carter – The King’s Speech
Best Supporting Actor – Geoffrey Rush – The King’s Speech
Best Adapted Screenplay – The Social Network – Aaron Sorkin.
Best Original Screenplay – The King’s Speech – David Seidler
Best Cinematography – True Grit – Roger Deakins
Outstanding British Film – The King’s Speech
Outstanding British Debut – Four Lions – Chris Morris
Best Editing – The Social Network – Angus Wall, Kirk Baxter
Best Original Music – The King’s Speech – Alexandre Desplat
Best Production Design – Inception – Guy Hendrix Dyas, Larry Dias, Doug Mowat
Best Costume Design: Alice in Wonderland – Colleen Atwood
Best Sound – Inception – Richard King, Lora Hirschberg, Gary A Rizzo, Ed Novick
Best Special Visual Effects – Inception – Corbould, Franklin, Lockley, Bebb
Best Make Up & Hair – Alice in Wonderland – Valli O’Reilly, Paul
Best Short Film – Until the River Runs Red – Paul Wright, Poss Kondeatis
Best Short Animation – The Eagleman Stag – Michael Please
Best Film Not in the English Language – The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Best Animated Film – Toy Story 3
Orange Wednesdays Rising Star Award – Tom Hardy

Sunday, February 13, 2011

MY FINAL PREDICTIONS



After a lot of research on how the films were trending along with their potential to win.  Here are my final predictions for all 24 categories.




Best Picture
Black Swan
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids are All Right
The Social Network
THE KING'S SPEECH
127 Hours
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter's Bone


Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role
Annette Bening (The Kids are All Right)
Nicole Kidman (Rabbit Hole)
Jennifer Lawrence (Winter's Bone)
NATALIE PORTMAN (BLACK SWAN)
Michelle Williams (Blue Valentine)



Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Javier Bardem (Biutiful)
Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network)
COLIN FIRTH (THE KING'S SPEECH)
James Franco (127 Hours)
Jeff Bridges (True Grit)



Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
CHRISTIAN BALE (THE FIGHTER)
John Hawkes (Winter's Bone)
Jeremy Renner (The Town)
Mark Ruffalo (The Kids are All Right)
Geoffrey Rush (The King's Speech)



Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role
Amy Adams (The Fighter)
Helena Bonham Carter (The King's Speech)
MELISSA LEO (THE FIGHTER)
Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit)
Jacki Weaver (Animal Kingdom)



Best Animated Feature Film of the Year
How to Train Your Dragon
The Illusionist
TOY STORY 3



Best Documentary Short Subject
Killing in the Name
Poster Girl
STRANGERS NO MORE
Sun Come Up
The Warriors of Qiugang



Best Short Film (Animated)
DAY AND NIGHT TEDDY NEWTON
The Gruffalo Jakob Schuh and Max Lang
Let's Pollute Geefwee Boedoe
The Lost Thing Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann
Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary) Bastien Dubois



Best Short Film (Live Action)
The Confession
The Crush
God of Love
Na Wewe
WISH 143



Achievement in Art Direction
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1
Inception
THE KING'S SPEECH
True Grit



Achievement in Cinematography
Black Swan
Inception
The King's Speech
The Social Network
TRUE GRIT



Achievement in Costume Design
Alice in Wonderland
I Am Love
THE KING'S SPEECH
The Tempest
True Grit



Achievement in Directing
Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan)
David O. Russell (The Fighter)
Tom Hooper (The King's Speech)
DAVID FINCHER (THE SOCIAL NETWORK)
Joel and Ethan Coen (True Grit)



Best Documentary Feature
Exit through the Gift Shop
Gasland Josh Fox
Inside Job
Restrepo
Waste Land

Achievement in Makeup
Barney's Version
The Way Back
THE WOLFMAN



Achievement in Film Editing
Black Swan
The Fighter
The King's Speech
127 Hours
THE SOCIAL NETWORK


Best Foreign Language Film of the Year
BIUTIFUL (MEXICO)
Dogtooth (Greece)
In a Better World (Denmark)
Incendies (Canada)
Hors la Loi (Algeria)



Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score)
How to Train Your Dragon
Inception
The King's Speech
127 Hours
THE SOCIAL NETWORK


 Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Song)
"Coming Home" from Country Strong Music and Lyric by Tom Douglas, Troy Verges and Hillary Lindsey
"I See the Light" from Tangled Music and Lyric by Alan Menken Lyric by Glenn Slater
"If I Rise" from 127 Hours Music by A.R. Rahman Lyric by Dido and Rollo Armstrong
"WE BELONG TOGETHER" FROM TOY STORY 3 BY RANDY NEWMAN


 Achievement in Sound Editing
INCEPTION
Toy Story 3
TRON: Legacy
True Grit
Unstoppable



Achievement in Sound Mixing
INCEPTION
The King's Speech
Salt
The Social Network
True Grit



Achievement in Visual Effects
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1
Hereafter
INCEPTION
Iron Man 2



Adapted Screenplay
127 Hours (Simon Beaufoy and Danny Boyle)
THE SOCIAL NETWORK (AARON SORKIN)
Toy Story 3 (Michael Arndt, story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich)
True Grit (Joel Coen and Ethan Coen)
Winter's Bone (Debra Granik and Anne Rossellini)



Original Screenplay
Another Year
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids are All Right
THE KING'S SPEECH

Saturday, February 12, 2011

OPOSSUM PREDICTS WINNERS


I am working on my predictions and will have them posted by Monday. Hopefully I do better than the opossum!

BERLIN (Reuters) – Germany's celebrity cross-eyed opossum Heidi has been recruited by Hollywood to predict winners of the Academy Awards on U.S. television, the Leipzig Zoo said Friday.
The opossum will appear from her home in Leipzig, Germany, on the "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" and chat show on channel ABC, which also broadcasts the Oscars.
"We're very happy about the appearance and hope that Heidi will not just represent the zoo but the city of Leipzig as well," zoo spokeswoman Maria Saegebarth said, adding that the date of Heidi's appearance has not been finalized.
Heidi became a star in Germany when her photo appeared in the mass-circulation newspaper Bild in December.

Friday, February 11, 2011

OSCAR PROMO



I was skepical about Franco and Hathaway hosting, but it might work.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

TIME FOR PREDICTIONS

We are only a few weeks away until the winners will be announced for this years Academy Awards. I am slowly, but surely seeing all of the nominated films. It is not too difficult to see them all due the fact that all of the films have a lot of nomination so there aren't as many movies to see as in the past. I will start making my final predictions this week. These predictions are not necessarily my favorites, they just what I think will win. The next post will be my prediction for the Best Picture win.

BEST PICTURE MONTAGE



Here is a link to a montage of the Best Picture nominees....

BEST PICTURE MONTAGE

Sunday, February 6, 2011

WRITERS GUILD WINNERS





No real surprises here especially since THE KING'S SPEECH was not eligible. The winners are:

Best Original Screenplay: Christopher Nolan, INCEPTION

Best Adapted Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, THE SOCIAL NETWORK

Documentary Writing: INSIDE JOB

Friday, February 4, 2011

THE MOVIE THAT WAS...



Since I started this blog in September It was all about THE SOCIAL NETWORK. I was hearing that it was the best film "ever" made and it was a shoe in for Best Picture. Times certainly have changed. THE KING'S SPEECH has taken over with 12 nominations and winning just about every award it has been nominated for.  They both are completely different films. THE NETWORK (as they call it) is as modern as a movie can be while THE KING'S SPEECH takes place in 1925. Some critics are still holding out hope for THE SOCIAL NETWORK, but I think it is time for everyone to give in and realize that THE NETWORK will not beat THE KING.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

DOGTOOTH: MY REVIEW


 DOGTOOTH is one of the movies nominated for Best Foreign Language Film.  This movie is certainly not for everyone.  It is from Greece and obviously subtitled, but like most subtitled movies you forget about it after a few minutes. Three teenagers are confined to an isolated house where their parents teach them everything about the world. All completely made up. They listen to tapes to learn new vocabulary with all of the wrong meanings. Such as "sea means armchair".  Needless to say the family is very disturbed and it makes for a pretty disturbing film. It is not for the faint of heart, but it is an interesting look at how we view the world by only what we are taught. DOGTOOTH will not win the Academy Award over BUITIFUL, but I did enjoy this movie.

MY GRADE: A-

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

OSCAR PARTY FOOD IDEAS





If you are planning an Oscar party this year I found some dishes that you can serve with their respective movie:

TRUE GRIT-True Grits

THE SOCIAL NETWORK-Apple Martini's

INCEPTION-Seven Layer Cake

BLACK SWAN-Black and White Cookies

WINTER'S BONE-Winter's Boneless Chicken

THE FIGHTER-Irish Stew, Soda Bread

THE KING'S SPEECH-Scones, King Crab Legs

127 HOURS-Gatorade, Water, Apple Juice (urine)

THE KIDS ARE ALL RIGHT-Steak Dinner

Don't forger popcorn and candy.....

If you have any other ideas please post them here!