Tuesday, January 22, 2008

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Oscar nominations today! I'm at school* so this will just be a quick take on my thoughts, with further detailed analysis in the next few weeks. And by the way, all you striking writers, actors in solidarity, et. al? Yeah, how about you try to remember this oldie but goodie: The show must go on!

(*normally I wouldn't be at school because I don't have classes on Tuesday, but because of the multiple Monday holidays this semester, Hofstra turned today into a Monday, so I had to come to school for my Monday 8 a.m. class toDAY, which meant I could not be home on my couch watching the live announcement of the Oscar noms. instead I was sitting in Constitutional Law. where I tried to watch the live stream on Oscar.com -- with headphones, duh -- but despite installing the plug-in it still didn't work. however, i chatted online with Brian who informed me as it happened. because, no, for your information, getting the news posted online twenty minutes later would not be soon enough, thank you very much. O brave new world, that has such university-wide wireless networks in it!)

There Will Be Blood! It well deserves to lead the pack, tied with No Country for Old Men at eight nominations, although it is absolutely criminal that Blood did not get a ninth nomination for best original score. It was the most haunting, original, effective, amazing music I've heard in a movie in some time, possibly ever.

Instead, Atonement and Ratatouille get nominated for score? Hello? I am officially annoyed by pretty much all of Atonement's seven nominations, with the possible exception of cinematography (which category it decidedly needs to lose to The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, no offense to There Will Be Blood), and I would hereby commit to working full-time on the Atonement backlash if I weren't so busy working on my Juno backlash. I saw Atonement, and it is my official UGH of the year. It's this year's In the Bedroom. And even though I have yet to see Ratatouille, although I have it at home from Netflix, it is just ugh by association because it's from someone who was also responsible for The (not-so) Incredibles.

Meanwhile, hello, let's just not nominate Into the Wild for picture, nor director (Sean Penn!) nor actor (Emile Hirsch!) nor song (Eddie Vedder!) but let's nominate Juno for best picture and director. And let's nominate THREE songs from Enchanted. Really? Planet backlash.

This is still one of my top three films of the year. It is SO unbelievably good. It had one of the single most compelling scenes I have ever seen on film, entirely due to its amazing cinematography and visual brilliance. It also had a spectacular script. Which did not get nominated, maybe because there were about eighty-six good movies based on books this year among the contenders, so the adapted screenplay category can ALMOST be forgiven for leaving Assassination out. ALMOST. It was a better script than No Country for Old Men, and far superior to Atonement. UGH! No one can explain why they like that film. I swear they are just being told it's fantastic and they'll love it, so then they do. It's the Obama of Oscar contenders. Furthermore, poor Casey is in like the most amazing line-up of all time in the Supporting Actor category, so I'm pretty sure he will lose, and I'm OK with that, because Hal Holbrook! (From Into the Wild...at least someone's brilliance was recognized for that film! It got nominated for Editing, too, actually.) And Javier Bardem, of course (No Country), which will be a shock to everyone if he doesn't win. But I'm telling you, Hal and Philip Seymour Hoffman in the fantastic and tragically overlooked Charlie Wilson's War are strong competition.

It, along with Into the Wild, should have been nominated for best picture, instead of Juno and Atonement. It is also yet another that should have been nominated for Adapted Screenplay.

But while all these books were adapted into screenplays, the Original Screenplay category is clearly all about Juno. And I would be supportive of that except I'm already over Juno. Diablo Cody (who invented that name for herself, a move which as Brian has repeatedly pointed out exemplifies all the reasons why Juno backlash is justified, although I'm more annoyed at all the people who love it! oh my god! so much! who apparently have never seen a film with an edgy but well-written script before. Try looking past the latest mainstream action blockbuster and walking down the hall to an independent film once in a while, people) ... um ... actually after that parenthetical rant I forgot what I was initially going to say about Diablo Cody. But it was probably that her good screenplay aside, her writing is decidedly mediocre in her new Entertainment Weekly column. Diablo, get over yourself, and everybody else, get over Diablo. Ready, go! On Oscar night I will hope for an upset and then maybe the Original Screenplay Oscar will go to Lars and the Real Girl or even Michael Clayton. A girl can dream.

Sicko got nominated for Documentary Feature! Hurrah! However, I fear it might lose to No End in Sight. That was OK, but it was kind of like watching a PBS new show about the Iraq war. Also, it wasn't all that surprising or new to people such as myself who have a brain, because it basically thoroughly documents that Bush & company have been lying and doing shady underhanded things about the war from the beginning. Gee, ya think? Unfortunately, there are apparently STILL millions of you out there who somehow don't know this. Why don't you know this? Why didn't you know it in 2004? Why didn't you know it in 2002? You amaze me. No End in Sight is this year's An Inconvenient Truth, on many, many levels. Only minus the lesbian-with-guitar. It also proves that if you would just listen to me, you could be ahead of the curve on not only political issues, but Oscar nominations to boot.

Which means you really should get behind me on the Atonement backlash. Even though I think it would be funny if Saoirse Ronan won supporting actress, since Keira and James didn't even get nominated, I am officially hoping for no wins for Atonement, especially because Cate Blanchett needs to win for I'm Not There, which was also an amazing film, unless Amy Ryan blows me away in Gone Baby Gone, which I haven't seen yet but is saved in my Netflix queue for when it releases on DVD next month.

Back to schoolwork now...man, I really shouldn't have to be at school on a religious holiday such as this...


raine said...


I'm just so shocked, I may nail someone to a cross to save you from your delusions.


linda said...

Excellent comment!

Yeah, I know everyone fell all over themselves lovin' that movie. But why? You all say the same thing, particularly my smart/gifted friends (well, and I try to avoid talking to dumb people about movies or anything, anyway, but you say): "Linda, they're unique! They're different, and put upon, and smart and special and gifted, and they get to be SUPERHEROES! And society sees their unique gifts!"

And the whole time I just keep thinking...how is that not the plot of like every single superhero comic booky thing ever? I'm still waiting for someone to explain why *this* one is unique.

I'll probably be waiting at least as long as I wait for someone to explain the Obama fervor.

Kim Diaz said...

The Ratatouille score rocks, OK? Excellent, fresh arrangements. I actually bought it. Now, I have not seen "Blood" but I am going soon, largely because of the rave reviews you've given it. And Juno was funny. There I said it. I didn't think "Oscar" when I saw it, but it was funny. Allison Janney was her usual impressive self.