Friday, December 28, 2007

new OSCAR! post (because I'm in the mood)

OK, so my globe and BFCA nomination rundowns will have to my merged with my upcoming win prediction posts, cause yeah it's getting really late to just react to the nominations, and there's just a lot going on in my life right now, so I've felt less of an urge to blog. But anyway, oscar thoughts:

1. No Country for Old Men (has everything going for it)
2. Into the Wild (has recovered well from the globe snub)
3. Atonement (the actors don't love it but every other branch will)
4. Sweeney Todd (ditto... and Tim Burton has career award sentiment)
5. There Will Be Blood (could easily be THE major snub, but it's huge right now, the LA critics winner is usually nommed... and I don't know what I'd replace it with)

BUT several films could spoil this (admittedly optimistic) lineup. Those films are:

6. Juno (a prime candidate for the "best pic without a director" slot AND the comedy slot, but it skews SO young in its appeal, has no pedigree at all, missed the SAG ensemble nod, and doesn't have the tech branches either... so I just can't see it making the final five, even with Ebert's help)
7. Michael Clayton (VERY possible, but I think it'll have trouble getting #1 votes... and that could make the difference in such a competitive year... also missed SAG ensemble despite 3 individual noms... that's worrisome... tepid box office hurts it, too)
8. American Gangster (will also have trouble getting #1 votes... it's made the BFCA, GG and SAG ensemble lists, but it feels very "been there, done that" and support has been spotty despite those 3 key nods)
9. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (could easily get the director/screenplay duo, but hasn't broken out in the way foreign films need to in order to crack best picture)
10. Hairspray (can't entirely be counted out after GG and SAG nods... and it's box office and "feel good" quality help it stand out... but it just doesn't feel like a real contender)

In all honesty, There Will Be Blood will probably be a just-miss that's nominated for director, screenplay and lead actor, but it has so many tech possibilities in addition to those that it looks like it could barrel into the top category on it's support from all the various branches. And all the would-be usurpers have drawbacks of their own. So I'm leaving it in, for now. The WGA/DGA/PGA trifecta will tell us a lot.

I'm not too worried about the SAG shutouts for Atonement and Sweeney Todd, since:

A) they're not really ensemble films
B) there were screener issues, and
C) they have abundant tech elements keeping them afloat

...not to mention that they'll probably both win their respective globes for best pic, cementing them as major contenders.

Charlie Wilson's War and The Kite Runner could both be given new life in the form of guild love, but for now, it doesn't look like they're going anywhere. I think best pic is between these ten. I suppose I haven't seen enough of these to know what my dream lineup would be, but I'd really like There Will Be Blood to make it (cause Anderson f***ing deserves it already, and dark films should be given more love) as well as Michael Clayton (cause it was very very good, and I hate to see middling box office kill a film's chances). And Sweeney Todd I would like to see in the mix simply because I love seeing musicals do well, and there were so many good ones this year that ONE of them should be in the lineup (preferably Once, but obviously that's not happening). I also very much liked Atonement and No Country, but I'm not as worried about them. I wish I'd seen Into the Wild so I could have an opinion on its now-very-likely nom, but alas, I missed it. Still, most people I trust have had so-so reactions to it, so I kind of wish it could be replaced by something better. But I'm not holding my breath.


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

SAG predictions + actuals

Sorry, I haven't done the stuff I said I'd do before (GG run-down, BFCA run-down, WHO'S HOTTER, etc.) but I will eventually (hopefully before people stop caring). I have a job now, and I am of course trying to see movies, so I've been busy. At least the personal drama seems to be settling down (though not in the way I wanted). Anyway... SAG tomorrow... my predictions are as follows:

Michael Clayton
No Country for Old Men (for the win?)
Sweeney Todd
alt. Juno
3:10 to Yuma
American Gangster
Into the Wild

BEFORE THE NOMS, I SAID... This one is not quite clear. Atonement, No Country and to a lesser extent Michael Clayton look good to go. For the last two spots, I'm tapping the musicals, though in truth I think only one will make it. Juno is looming and is a good bet, but I'm betting the many famous singing actors in Hairspray (a true and deserving ensemble) and/or Sweeney (highly buzzed) will win out. Into the Wild is also a distinct possibility.

NOW, I SAY... What the F***!? Wow, this is crazy. Quite a wrench thrown in the works here. For one thing, the actors hate Atonement. That can't be good. It didn't get nommed ANYWHERE. Into the Wild recovered well from the globe snubbage, as many expected. American Gangster shows that it's still very much alive (even without Denzel). 3:10 to Yuma makes a surprise showing. And I was right about Hairspray. I was WRONG however about Michael Clayton, which managed three individual nods, but no mention here. Weird. Anyway, I suppose this means No Country is winning. Crazy.

MY SCORE: 2/5 (ouch)

Amy Adams
Julie Christie (for the win?)
Marion Cotillard
Laura Linney
Ellen Page
alt. Cate Blanchett
Angelina Jolie

BEFORE, I SAID... This one's tough. There are still a lot of women in play here... Jolie and Blanchett both have GG (drama) and BFCA noms, but I'm not predicting them. Knightley is obviously a possibility, but I think her likely ensemble mention is enough reason for them to pass on her here. Foster is still possible, as well. As is HBC, if they're crazy for Sweeney. But I'm going to go with Adams (who would seem like a stronger bet here than with oscar, even if she didn't have GG and BFCA noms, which she does) and Linney (who I'm hoping will surprise here, since she's loved by her fellow actors). I hope I'm right, since I love both actresses, and don't think Jolie and Blanchett need any more love. But we'll see what happens...

Note: I have tapped Christie to win here, and I think she will (legend who's never won a SAG award, critical frontrunner, etc.) BUT I think if anyone can beat her, it's Adams. She has a unique and singular (if un-oscary) role, and she rocked it like no one else could. And more importantly, her film has a big BIG advantage over all the others in that lots more people have seen it. It will reach $100 million soon. While Juno may start rolling in dough eventually, Adams is the clear populist choice as of now.

NOW, I SAY: Wow, I hate these noms. I guess Angelina is fine (though I didn't expect to see her here), but Blanchett AGAIN!? Come on, people, be a little creative. Could you really think of no one else to honor than someone whose movie totally flopped and was badly received and who is getting nominated in your other category anyway? How ridiculous. It just reeks of laziness and preordainment. And this kills Linney for good. I suppose these will probably be our 5 oscar nominees, though that would make me very sad. I'm still holding out for Keira (the SAG membership obviously doesn't like her, but AMPAS does) and/or Adams (a much more fun and justifiable choice than Blanchett).

MY SCORE: 3/5 (4/5 with my alternate)

George Clooney
Daniel Day-Lewis (for the win?)
Johnny Depp
James McAvoy
Viggo Mortsensen
alt. Emile Hirsch
Ryan Gosling

BEFORE, I SAID... I think the awards radar is starting to hone in on these five men, for both SAG and oscar. The first three are locks, McAvoy carries a frontrunner film, and Mortensen's overdue and has been doing better than expected with precursors. Nevertheless, Hirsch, Washington, and perhaps even Gosling remain strong challengers here. But I for one would LOVE for these five to be the lineup (even though Clooney is the only one I've seen).

NOW, I SAY... No Depp. My goodness. And here, of all places (I love that both times I claimed an "epic battle for the win," one of my imagined competitors wasn't even nommed). At least Mortensen made it. And you gotta love that Ryan Gosling keeps getting noticed... lots of goodwill, he has. Shame about Depp, though. This really changes things... without Depp as competition, Daniel Day-Lewis should win this one in a walk, giving him lots of momentum against Depp at oscar time. If the latter is even nominated, that is. Oy vey.

MY SCORE: 3/5 (4/5 with my alternate)

Cate Blanchett (for the win?)
Saoirse Ronan
Vanessa Redgrave
Amy Ryan
Tilda Swinton
alt. Jennifer Garner
Ruby Dee
Catherine Keener

BEFORE, I SAID... Alright. Four women all look lockish here: Blanchett, Ryan, Ronan, Swinton. I'd worry a bit for Ronan except that SAG in particular LOVES child actresses. So I think she's in. But the 5th spot is really hard to say. It could be anyone. I just picked Redgrave cause she seems like the type of legend who they'd just honor out of veteran worship. BUT that goes against the usual logic of smaller roles being honored only in ensemble at SAG. I do have this feeling about Garner making it here, but I only think she will if Juno gets in for ensemble... and currently I'm predicting it not to. Ditto Catherine Keener. BUT let it be known that I won't be surprised in the least if either of them makes it.

Note: I don't think Amy Ryan has much chance to win here, despite all the critical hosannas... I just don't think enough people have heard of her or her film, and SAG is quite populist. And while Blanchett's film is no blockbuster, everyone knows her and worships her AND Bob Dylan. And she's trumped a critical frontrunner here before. So I think it's hers.

NOW, I SAY... well, I said I was worried about Ronan... but I never actually expected her to miss. Crazy. They REALLY didn't care for Atonement. As soon as I noticed she was missing, I knew it was in trouble... she was its surest bet here. Damn. Anyway, Blanchett, Ryan and Swinton just keep on keepin' on, and I was also right about Keener, even though I didn't pick her even as an alternate. And perhaps most importantly, Ruby Dee finally makes an appearance. Does this mean she's in for oscar, too? And could she actually win the SAG, since she's in the most widely seen film? Blanchett has a double nom, so she'll be tough to beat. Hmmm...


Casey Affleck
Javier Bardem (for the win?)
Philip Seymour Hoffman
John Travolta
Tom Wilkinson
alt. Hal Holbrook
Tommy Lee Jones

BEFORE, I SAID... I feel pretty confident about all of these. Affleck, Bardem, Hoffman and Wilkinson have yet to miss a major precursor... so they all seem safe. The globes swapped Travolta for Holbrook, and I think SAG will nod him, too, in keeping with my theory that they'll love Hairspray... though Holbrook should be a close 6th. Max Von Sydow, I think, could stage a William-Hurt-like coup at the oscars, but I don't expect to see him here.

NOW, I SAY... well, finally, a category where the surprises make my happy. Yay for shakeups. No Travolta or Hoffman! Yay! Two noms for No Country! Yay! But again, weird. And what does this mean for oscar? Tough to say. And could this impede Bardem's chances for a SAG win, or does it just strengthen them? Again, tough to say.

MY SCORE: 3/5 (4/5 with my alternate)

Anyway, yeah... not such good news for Sweeney and Atonement (to put it mildly), and extremely confusing in general. Did the SAG nominating committee even SEE Atonement and Sweeney? They haven't been in theaters, so if there weren't aggressive screening campaigns, maybe the actors just didn't see them? Or maybe they just hated them. Maybe they were turned off by Sweeney's bad singing, or Keira's bony clavicle. I don't know. What a wild ride this season has been for these two films. I'm so curious to see how they end up.


Saturday, December 15, 2007

I can't stop watching this!

Meryl Streep singing like Cher and dancing around like a 20-year-old (to ABBA!)... I can't look away.

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Yikes, so many awards! I'll update soon

I promise I will update soon with my globe rundown, BFCA rundown, how I did on my predictions, my thoughts on certain films and their awards chances, etc. Plus another round of WHO'S HOTTER. I've just recently been busy with a new job (um, sort of) and some... er... personal drama (a good thing) along with just having a lot of real-world fun. Yay, winter break!

A brief note for right now: I'm SO excited about Sweeney Todd being really good and maybe winning oscars. It seems Burton has really delivered here, despite lots of people's reservations (including mine). The stars seem to have aligned on this one. So yay. Methinks it's just a SAG ensemble nod away from the oscar shortlist (assuming it makes decent money). Mmmm... great musicals.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

globe noms tomorrow!

I made a few changes to my predictions... I swapped American Gangster out again for Into the Wild and There Will Be Blood, among other things. But I'm keeping my most ballsy picks: Judd for best actress, Pitt for best actor, Baron Cohen in supporting. I'm also sticking with Once for the best pic nod, come hell or high water. Come on, HFPA. Vindicate my faith.

Monday, December 10, 2007

BEST ACTRESS: Cotillard VS Christie

The race is on. And doesn't it seem like a great race?
They embody total opposites on the awards radar:

hot young thing VS veteran/legend

mimicry/biopic VS fictional indie

big & intense VS subtle & understated

young deglamming VS old being beautiful

edited with a chainsaw VS edited normally

French chick in French film VS British chick in Canadian film

musical/comedy VS drama (at least according to the globes)

And most people seem to be firmly in one camp or the other. They're such vastly different stars in such vastly different roles and acting styles that it's hard not to pick a side. I myself have not seen La Vie En Rose and liked Christie's perf a lot, but didn't LOVE her like crazy. So I'm on the fence for now. But it seems that it'll be one of these women, or the other... unless someone else makes a splash in a big way.


Sunday, December 09, 2007

NYFCC predictions

My prediction: No Country for Old Men
My alternate: I'm Not There
Winner: No Country for Old Men

Bingo! I got this one. It just made sense, given what's been happening. Also, I'm Not There came in third, apparently, so it was not a bad choice as an alternate.

My prediction: Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly)
My alternate: The Coens (No Country for Old Men)
Winners: The Coens

Damn. Shoulda trusted my No Country hunch more fully (damn you, Glenn!)

My prediction: Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises)
My alternate: Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood)
Winer: Daniel Day-Lewis

I decided not to play it safe on this one, thinking NY might wanna throw us a curveball (they often do). But I was wrong.

My prediction: Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose)
My alternate: Julie Christie (Away From Her)
Winner: Julie Christie

I knew I was wrong on this. I don't know why I predicted Cotillard. At least I had the sense to pick Christie as my alternate (if you count alternates, I'm doin' pretty well...)

My prediction: Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men)
My alternate: Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton)
Winner: Javier Bardem

Yay! The obvious choice gets it.

My prediction: Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton)
My alternate: Cate Blanchett (I'm Not There)
Winner: Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone) AGAIN

Geeeeeeez. I keep not predicting her, thinking her last award is really her last (at least for a bit). But she just keeps winning. How long can this go on? I really should've had her at least as an alternate. I just thought NY would finally buck the trend.

My prediction: Michael Clayton
My alternate: No Country for Old Men
Winner: No Country for Old Men

Again I had winner No Country as my alternate. I knew they'd love it, I just didn't realize they'd love it this much. Crazy. And sad about the continued lack of Michael Clayton love (apart from George Clooney).

My prediction: Lust, Caution
My alternate: The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
Winner: There Will Be Blood

They clearly liked this one a lot.

My prediction: There Will Be Blood
My alternate: Atonement
Winner: none (but my prediction here won the prize for cinematography)

Anyway... I did better with these than with LA, at least if you count alternates. These were good choices overall by NY. Next up, globe noms. WOOP


Critics' Choice Award nomination predix

I'm gonna be insane and try to predict the noms in all their crazy categories. It's a fun challenge. Here goes:

BEST PICTURE (top ten)
American Gangster
Into the Wild
Michael Clayton
No Country for Old Men
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
There Will Be Blood
alt. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, Hairspray

Tim Burton, Sweeney Todd
The Coen Bros, No Country
Sean Penn, Into the Wild
Ridley Scott, American Gangster
Joe Wright, Atonement

Michael Clayton
No Country for Old Men
The Savages

George Clooney (Michael Clayton)
Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood)
Johnny Depp (Sweeney Todd)
Tommy Lee Jones (In the Valley of Elah)
James McAvoy (Atonement)
Denzel Washington (American Gangster)

Amy Adams (Enchanted)
Julie Christie (Away From Her)
Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose)
Angelina Jolie (A Mighty Heart)
Keira Knightley (Atonement)
Laura Linney (The Savages)

Casey Affleck (Jesse James)
Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men)
Phillip Seymour Hoffman (Charlie Wilson's War)
Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood)
Hal Holbrook (Into the Wild)
Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton)

Cate Blanchett (I'm Not There)
Jennifer Jason Leigh (Margot at the Wedding)
Saoirse Ronan (Atonement)
Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone)
Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton)
Marisa Tomei (Before the Devil Knows You're Dead)

Lust, Caution
The Golden Compass
There Will Be Blood

"A Hero Comes Home" (Beowulf)
"Come So Far" (Hairspray)
"Falling Slowly" (Once)
"Guaranteed" (Into the Wild)
"That's How You Know" (Enchanted)

Across the Universe
I'm Not There
Sweeney Todd

Knocked Up

Bridge to Terabithia
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

Bee Movie
The Simpsons Movie

Nikki Blonsky (Hairspray)
Ellen Page (Juno)
AnnaSophia Robb (Bridge to Terabithia)
Saoirse Ronan (Atonement)
Emma Watson (Harry Potter)

Marcus Carl Franklin (I'm Not There)
Freddie Highmore (August Rush)
Elijah Kelley (Hairspray)
Josh Hutcherson (Bridge to Terabithia)
Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter)


Saturday, December 08, 2007

LAFCA predictions & actuals

My pick: No Country for Old Men
My alternate: Atonement
Winner: There Will Be Blood

My pick: Julian Schnabel, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
My alternate: The Coens, No Country for Old Men
Winner: Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood)

My pick: Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood)
My alternate: Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises)
Winner: Daniel Day-Lewis

My pick: Laura Linney (The Savages and/or Jindabyne)
My alternate: Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose)
Winner: Marion Cotillard

My pick: Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton)
My alternate: Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men)
Winner: Vlad Ivanov (4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days)

My pick: Cate Blanchett (I'm Not There)
My alternate: Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton)
Winner: Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone)

My pick: Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton)
My alternate: Christopher Hampton (Atonement)
Winner: Tamara Jenkins (The Savages)

My pick: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
My alternate: 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days
Winner: 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days

My pick: Ratatouille
My alternate: Persepolis
Winner: Ratatouille & Persepolis (tie)

My pick: Lust, Caution
My alternate: Atonement
Winner: The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

My pick: Atonement
My alternate: Lust, Caution
Winner: Once (except it was a "music" award)

My picks: Diablo Cody and Ellen Page (Juno)
My alternate: Sam Riley (Control)
Winner: Sarah Polley (Away From Her)

Damn, I SUCKED at these. I got only two categories right (best animated and best actor), and those were fairly obvious (especially considering TWBB's dominance). Speaking of Anderson and TWBB, the buzz on it had been so quiet that I never considered it here. Good for it, though. Now Anderson at least is in prime position for a lone director nod... assuming the film doesn't make it in for best pic. Its new status as the critics' darling definitely makes the race more interesting.

But if I couldn't predict the L.A. awards, my predictions here in pic/director were right on for the Boston awards! Ironically. And Blanchett won the NYFCO. The really interesting thing, though, is all this Amy Ryan love. Is she becoming the frontrunner for the oscar? I could actually see her still not getting nominated at all (Peter Sarsgaard, anyone?). But again, she's making this much more interesting.


Yay for Jodie Foster! (all is forgiven)

As is being widely reported in stories like this one, Jodie recently thanked her lesbian life partner Cydney in an acceptance speech. This makes me very happy, and is exactly the kind of subtle-and-tasteful-but-not-cowardly move I'd been hoping for. Some of you remember my other Jodie post in which, frustrated with her bad new movie and the irony of its title with respect to her personal life, I proceeded to write a rather harsh "open letter" to talk some sense into her... and the rest is history (read the comments).

So... maybe she read it?


But anyway, I approve. Not that Jodie needs my or anyone else's approval (save Cydney's), but I do. You go, girl. Now go win another oscar (but not for The Brave One, please).


Friday, December 07, 2007

For your consideration... the bitches:

I find it very sad that these three lovely, icy, fantastical bitches/witches will almost certainly be ignored during awards time. Each is (debatably) the best part of her film. Each is unique and obsession-worthy. And each is trapped in a genre film, and hence, preordained not to be award-worthy. Damn. But isn't it great that we get this huge concentration of fantasy bitch supporting actresses this year? I love a good trend.


Nicole Kidman (The Golden Compass)
Michelle Pfeiffer (Stardust)
Imelda Staunton (Harry Potter: The Order of the Phoenix)

in the categories of...


And while we're at it, add:

Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton)

She may not be in a fantasy film, but we love her just the same. Besides, she's an honorary member of this year's fantasy witch/bitch club, for her past performance in Narnia. I hope at least this performance gets Swinton recognized finally. Clayton is doing well so far... the path seems clear. The Golden Globe and Critics' Choice nominations will tell us a lot. Cross your fingers.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

GOLDEN GLOBE nomination predix

1. Atonement *lock*
2. No Country for Old Men *lock*
3. Michael Clayton *likely*
4. Into the Wild *questionable*
5. There Will Be Blood *questionable*
alt. American Gangster

& A Mighty Heart

1. Julie Christie (Away from Her) *lock*
2. Angelina Jolie (A Mighty Heart) *near-lock*
3. Keira Knightley (Atonement) *near-lock*
4. Jodie Foster (The Brave One) *questionable*
5. Ashley Judd (Bug) *wild card*
alt. Cate Blanchett (Elizabeth: The Golden Age)
& Halle Berry (Things We Lost in the Fire)

1. Daniel Day-Lewis (There Will Be Blood) *lock*
2. George Clooney (Michael Clayton) *near-lock*
3. James McAvoy (Atonement) *near-lock*
4. Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises) *questionable*
5. Brad Pitt (Jesse James) *wild card*
alt. Denzel Washington (American Gangster) *questionable*
& Emile Hirsch (Into the Wild)

1. Hairspray *lock*
2. Sweeney Todd *lock*
3. Enchanted *likely*
4. Juno *likely*
5. Once *questionable*
6. Knocked Up *questionable*
alt. The Savages
& Charlie Wilson's War

1. Marion Cotillard (La Vie En Rose) *lock*
2. Amy Adams (Enchanted) *lock*
3. Ellen Page (Juno) *near-lock*
4. Helena Bonham-Carter (Sweeney Todd) *likely*
5. Laura Linney (The Savages) *likely*
6. Nicole Kidman (Margot at the Wedding) *questionable*
alt. Nikki Blonsky (Hairspray)
& Keri Russell (Waitress)

1. Johnny Depp (Sweeney Todd) *lock*
2. Ryan Gosling (Lars and the Real Girl) *near-lock*
3. Tom Hanks (Charlie Wilson's War) *likely*
4. Philip Seymour Hoffman (The Savages) *likely*
5. Johnny Depp (Pirates: At World's End) *questionable*
alt. Don Cheadle (Talk to Me)
& Glen Hansard (Once)

1. Cate Blanchett (I'm Not There) *lock*
2. Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone) *near-lock*
3. Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton) *likely*
4. Saoirse Ronan (Atonement) *likely*
5. Jennifer Jason Leigh (Margot at the Wedding) *questionable*
alt. Kelly MacDonald (No Country for Old Men)
& Jennifer Garner (Juno)

1. Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men) *lock*
2. Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton) *lock*
3. Casey Affleck (Jesse James) *likely*
4. John Travolta (Hairspray) *questionable*
5. Sacha Baron Cohen (Sweeney Todd) *wild card*
alt. Philip Seymour Hoffman (Charlie Wilson's War)
& Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood)

1. The Coen Bros (No Country for Old Men) *lock*
2. Joe Wright (Atonement) *lock*
3. Tim Burton (Sweeney Todd) *likely*
4. Paul Thomas Anderson (There Will Be Blood) *likely*
5. Sean Penn (Into the Wild)
alt. Ridley Scott (American Gangster)
& Sidney Lumet (Before the Devil Knows You're Dead)

1. No Country for Old Men *lock*
2. Atonement *near-lock*
3. Michael Clayton *likely*
4. Juno *likely*
5. There Will Be Blood *questionable*
alt. The Savages
& I'm Not There

1. Atonement *lock*
2. There Will Be Blood *likely*
3. Beowulf *likely*
4. Lust, Caution *questionable*
5. The Kite Runner *questionable*
alt. The Golden Compass
& Enchanted

1. Once ("Falling Slowly") *likely*
2. Hairspray ("Come So Far") *likely*
3. Into the Wild ("Guaranteed") *likely*
4. Enchanted ("That's How You Know") *likely*
5. Love in the Time of Cholera (whichever) *questionable*
alt. Beowulf ("A Hero Comes Home")
& The Golden Compass ("Lyra")

1. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly *lock*
2. 4 Months, 3 Weeks & 2 Days *lock*
3. The Kite Runner *near-lock*
4. Persepolis *near-lock*
5. Lust, Caution *likely*
alt. Silent Light (Mexico)
& La Vie En Rose (France)

1. Ratatouille *lock*
2. Beowulf *near-lock*
3. The Simpsons Movie *near-lock*
(Persepolis doesn't qualify, so I'm thinking this is the list)

What do people think of these? I guess it's a bit premature, but I felt like doing it. I suppose the most controversial thing about these predictions is my complete snub of American Gangster, but I don't think it's really so unlikely (plus, I have it as an alternate in several categories). I also included Brad Pitt over far more oscary candidates, cause I figure they may want him and Angie as a two-pack. Other "no guts no glory" choices include Ashley Judd for actress and A Mighty Heart for best pic. Yes, these are REAL predictions. I really think all these things will happen.


NBR actuals (with my predictions)

my prediction: Atonement (Focus Features)
my alternate: No Country for Old Men
winner: No Country for Old Men

My alternate won this award, along with a few others, giving it a big big boost in the awards season. Expect No Country to garner oscar nods across the board.

my prediction: David Fincher (Zodiac)
my alternate: The Coen Bros (No Country)
winner: Tim Burton (Sweeney Todd)

This makes sense; he was not far down my list of possibilities. I was just going for the "random" factor when I chose Fincher. But still, the NBR's choice in this category doesn't usually correlate with oscar (the last two years notwithstanding). So I'm not holding my breath for Burton (though this certainly doesn't hurt).

my prediction: Johnny Depp (Sweeney Todd)
my alternate: Daniel Day-Lewis (TWWB)
winner: George Clooney (Michael Clayton)

I am happy about this. I really liked Clooney in this film, and this win puts him in a good position for a nod... especially since most of the other awards will likely be won be already-locked-in Day-Lewis (and perhaps Mortensen). And Sweeney got its own boost in the director category (and will surely be big at the globes), so Depp is in fine shape, too.

my prediction: Julie Christie (Away From Her)
my alternate: Laura Linney (Savages and Jindabyne)
winner: Julie Christie

Yeah I nailed this one right on the head, thanks. I've had a feeling for a long time that this would be Christie's first big award. It just seemed right. In this category, the NBR usually goes for someone pretty famous who gave a beloved turn, but isn't quite certain for attention, for whatever reason (at least until her coronation here). So there you go. Expect her to cop the globe without much trouble, too. And the oscar after that? Maybe.

my prediction: Javier Bardem (No Country for Old Men)
my alternate: Tom Wilkinson (Michael Clayton)
winner: Casey Affleck (Jesse James)

Well, I figured they'd probably honor him somewhere, just not here. I thought instead that this would be the beginning of a Bardem steamroller... but they found plenty of other places to honor No Country. Anyway, last time the NBR went to bat for a case of category fraud here (Jake Gyllenhaal), their winner went on to get nominated. So expect that to happen again.

my prediction: Cate Blanchett (I'm Not There)
my alternate: Michelle Pfeiffer (Hairspray and Stardust)
winner: Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone)

OK, here's the thing: I don't think Amy Ryan will get nommed. Simply because the NBR's oscar record here is quite spotty. They often go for someone who looks very on-the-fence, as it were, and then stays on the fence for the rest of the season, and gets snubbed. But then, this category's pretty weak, so maybe she'll make it. Hard to say.

my prediction: Diablo Cody (Juno)
my alternate: Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton)
winners: Diablo Cody (Juno) and Nancy Oliver (Lars and the Real Girl)

Yay! A tie! And I'm happy Lars is now in contention here, though I still don't think it'll get nommed. And yay also for my being right about the other winner.

my prediction: Paul Thomas Anderson (TWBB)
my alternate: Christopher Hampton (Atonement)
winner: The Coens for No Country for Old Men

Well, I figured they'd honor the Coens (and boy did they), just not here. Oh well. I am a bit surprised Atonement didn't win here, especially since No Country won elsewhere, too. Weird that there seems to be no "special achievement in filmmaking" honor this year, since it would've been perfect for the Coens, freeing up this win for Atonement or something else. Sigh.

my prediction: The Coen Bros (No Country for Old Men)
my alternate: Sarah Polley (Away From Her)
winner: NONE (but the Coens won a lot of other stuff)

my prediction: the cast of Hairspray
my alternate: the cast of I'm Not There
winner: the cast of No Country for Old Men

Another award for No Country. They had a big night.

my prediction: Tony Gilroy (Michael Clayton)
my alternate: Ben Affleck (Gone Baby Gone)
winner: Ben Affleck

Sigh. They went with the celebrity. Whatever.

my prediction: Emile Hirsch (Into the Wild)
my alternate: Casey Affleck (Gone Baby Gone and Jesse James)
winner: Emile Hirsch

Got it. And my alternate was honored elsewhere. Yeehaw!

my prediction: Ellen Page (Juno)
my alternate: Nikki Blonsky (Hairspray)
winner: Ellen Page

Got this one, too. But it was easy. Does this lock her in for a nod? I'd say no, though it certainly helps.

my predictions:
1. Atonement (got it! though it didn't win)
2. No Country for Old Men (their winner)
3. There Will Be Blood
4. Into the Wild
5. Michael Clayton
6. Charlie Wilson's War
7. Zodiac
8. Hairspray
9. I'm Not There
10. Once

the rest of their real top ten:
The Assissination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
The Bourne Ultimatum
The Bucket List (wtf IS this film???)
The Kite Runner
Lars and the Real Girl
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

OK, can I just say, I miss the days when the NBR did a whole ranked top ten. It was more fun to predict. But I guess those days are over now. Also, it looks like they now choose ten in addition to their big winner, which I think is new. Anyway. I didn't do too well with the top ten (though I did have their winner at #2). It always flummoxes me how some independent films qualify for this list, while others are ghettoized into "best independent films." It's kind of like how some foreign films or debuts are allowed into best feature at the Spirit Awards, while others have to settle for "best foreign film" or "best first feature." Whatever. It all just goes to show you just how pointless this whole thing is.

But anyway, who does this help? Obviously No Country for Old Men had a great day, and is looking very good for all kinds of nods. Juno didn't do too shabbily either. Michael Clayton, Jesse James and Sweeney Todd also did quite well (and needed to). Gone Baby Gone also got a bit of a boost, but it remains to be seen whether it'll figure into the oscar race. Ditto Lars and the Real Girl, but I still don't think it'll be nominated anywhere (though this should help Ryan Gosling's chances at the globes). Atonement I think is holding steady, and didn't need any additional help. If it'd been past over for the top ten list, it might be in trouble, but it wasn't, so it's fine.

And who got hurt? Well, ALL the non-Sweeney Todd musicals (Hairspray, I'm Not There, Once, Enchanted, Across the Universe) could've used some help here. Oh well. There Will Be Blood also was conspicuously absent from the whole announcement, and that can't be good. American Gangster was snubbed, too, but I predicted that. In conclusion:

BIGGEST WINNER: No Country for Old Men
BIGGEST LOSERS: There Will Be Blood, American Gangster
(assuming the globes follow suit)

Thoughts on this?


Beyonce being ridiculous

Seriously, SO funny. Watch it.


NBR tomorrow

I'm sticking to my old NBR predictions, though I just now added some categories and included alternates. We'll see how I do.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

for Glenn

To make his hand feel better.

And yes, Glenn, I realize you've probably already seen this, but I've never seen it on your blog, so I thought I'd take a shot. And even if you have, it's worth another look. It sure is delicious. Look at the way this posture makes his pecs and ass bulge out. Perfection.

This makes me understand why straight men like women with curves.

Mmmm... Hugh curves...

And you know what I love most about Hugh? He probably wouldn't mind my posting this AT ALL. Nor my objectifying him. He just seems cool like that.

But you know what? If I'm wrong, I don't really care. I love him anyway.

What's new with Hugh?

Hugh Jackman talks about exploring tantric sex.

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WHO'S HOTTER: (the quarterfinals)
James Dean or Daniel Craig?


Nationality: American

Hotness peak: 1955
(but really forever)

Hotter than:
Marlon Brando
Matt Damon
Paul Rudd

How'd he get this far?
Um. Because he's JAMES DEAN. He of the sad eyes, luxuriant hair, and stark, inimitable cool. Founder of both the "disaffected model" look and the "vaguely bisexual" aura. The standard bearer for hotness. Bow down.

Can he go all the way?
I don't know. I sure got scared when he almost lost to Paul Rudd a few weeks back (again I say "WTF!?"). But I have faith.


Nationality: British

Hotness peak: 2006

Hotter than:
Chris Evans
Cary Grant
Monty Clift

How'd he get this far?
In short, because he's HOT. He's hot like butter is fattening. And he does nudity. And he's played a gay sex object (little seen, but whatever). And only Clive Owen can touch him in the "badass" department. Though really, on second thought, he can't. Daniel Craig OWNS Clive Owen. Was Clive chosen as Bond? No, he was not. Can Clive work a swimsuit like Daniel? No, he cannot (though I'd love to see him try).

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WHO'S HOTTER: (the quarterfinals)
Jake Gyllenhaal or Eric Bana?


Nationality: American

Hotness peak:
that would be 2005

Hotter than:
Warren Beatty
Taye Diggs
Paul Newman

How'd he get this far?
Well, first of all, he's Jake. Second of all, look at him. And also, there was this movie about gay cowboys...

Yes, but how'd he beat Paul Newman?
It's called "being Jake." That's really the only answer I can give. Unless you want a detailed essay response involving soulful eyes, santa hats, secluded tents and Heath Ledger.


Nationality: Aussie

Hotness peak: Hmmm... has there really been a peak? It's kind of been one big plateau...

Hotter than:
Viggo Mortensen
Hugh Jackman
Russell Crowe

How'd he get this far?
Damned if I know. Is this finally the end of the line? We'll see. But clearly Bana's doing something right, having bested Viggo, Hugh and Russell. I guess it's the muscles? Seriously, someone, enlighten me. Like, details. Cause I still don't see it. Yeah he's hot, sure, but THIS hot? REALLY? Whatever. I guess he does have a cute little smile.

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WHO'S HOTTER: (the quarterfinals)
Clive Owen or Ewan McGregor?


Nationality: British

Hotness peak: 2004

Hotter than:
George Clooney
Tony Leung
Ryan Gosling

How'd he get this far?
Well, that's a silly question. Clive's been nigh invincible this whole time; he's yet to endure even a close call. Phrases like "pure sex" and "eternally sexy" have been bandied about. Clive is just one of those guys. Is it the eyes? The voice? The height? The accent? The charm? All of the above? Or maybe just the fact that he's a badass. You decide.


Nationality: Scottish

Hotness peak: debatable... roughly 1998-2001

Hotter than:
James McAvoy
Enrique Iglesias
Colin Farrell

How'd he get this far?
One word: charm. OK, two more words: sing & strip. Ewan can do all these things. And does. Often. He's really in a class of his own in terms of hotness. He redefines hotness. Who needs that "smokin" quality when you have Ewan's exuberance, boyishness, accent and singing voice? Not to mention that much comfort (some would say cockiness) with your body. Rock on, Ewan.

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WHO'S HOTTER: (the quarterfinals)
Jude Law or Ralph Fiennes?


Nationality: British

Hotness peak: 1996

Hotter than:
Joseph Fiennes
Mark Wahlberg
James Marsden
(by a hair)

How'd he get this far?
By the skin of his teeth. But no seriously... Ralph has a rabid fanbase here. They are loyal. And they could take him even farther still. They say it's his intensity... the eyes, the voice, the emotions he stirs up. Grrrr... and starring in an iconic epic romance doesn't hurt. His delicious evil streak doesn't hurt either.


Nationality: British

Hotness peak: 1999

Hotter than:
Brad Pitt
Orlando Bloom
Chris Evans

How'd he get this far?
That glorious run from 1999-2004 has sealed his place in the canon of our hottest (and most talented) stars. His time may have passed, hotness-wise (remains to be seen), but boy what a time it was. It was Dickie Greenleaf who skyrocketed Jude from pretty boy to the realm of Golden God, but there've been plenty of pleasures since then (and before then, too). Yum.

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Saturday, December 01, 2007

the cutest thing you will ever see in your life