Like every other person who writes about movies, I feel obligated to make my Oscar picks. Feel free to chip in your two cents in the comments.
Best Director – Will win: The Coens, No Country for Old Men. Should win: The Coens should win this one out of those nominated, but I would probably give it to Andrew Dominik for The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.
Best Actor – Will win: Daniel Day-Lewis, There Will Be Blood. Should win: Day-Lewis, though Viggo Mortensen for Eastern Promises was also outstanding.
Best Actress – Will win: Probably Julie Christie, Away From Her. Should win: Well, this is a tough one. The only one of the five I saw was Ellen Page in Juno, and as good as she was, I can’t see myself giving her the Oscar. But boy, was this a male-dominated year — looking at my top 10, none of the films have a true lead actress, and most don’t have any significant female characters. So I guess I’ll have to abstain here.
Best Supporting Actor – Will win: Javier Bardem, No Country for Old Men. Should win: Bardem was outstanding and his character was certainly the most memorable of the year. It’s too bad that Casey Affleck can’t also win for Jesse James.
Best Supporting Actress – Will win: Hmmm…this one is wide open, but I’ll say Cate Blanchett for I’m Not There. Should win: I didn’t see I’m Not There but my instinct is that Blanchett is being given a lot of extra credit for her gender-reversing role as Bob Dylan. And Tilda Swinton was excellent in Michael Clayton, so I’d give it to her.
Best Original Screenplay – Will win: Diablo Cody, Juno. Should win: While Cody will take the trophy for the indie darling, I’d give it to Brad Bird and company for Ratatouille. Come on, creating a engaging, heartfelt story about a rat who wants to cook? That beats out a gimmicky teen pregnancy yarn any day.
Best Adapted Screenplay – Will win: The Coens again, No Country for Old Men. Should win: It’s always hard for me to figure out what this category means — is it the most faithful adaptation? Is it the film that took the source material and made it into something better? Why is this even a category? I’ll give a shout-out to Zodiac, which took a true story and what was probably not a great book and melded them to create a really solid film.
Others I’m rooting for — The Assassination of Jesse James for Best Cinematography, Ratatouille for Best Animated Feature, “Falling Slowly” from Once for Best Song (even though it wasn’t the best song from the film), and Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood for Best Score for There Will be Blood. Oh wait, what? He wasn’t nominated because of a technicality? Oh yeah, that’s right, the Oscars are dumb. But I’ll probably watch them anyway.