Wednesday, February 24, 2010

TFF #36 and The Oscar Clearingouse #11

With less than two weeks until Oscar night...almost no suspense...

TFF #36 films in bold

Here's the distilled wisdom from The Envelope, And the Winner Is, The Oscar Guy, Gurus of Gold, The Awards Circuit, Rope of Silicon and Film Misery...

Best Picture: The Hurt Locker edges Avatar. No other really serious competition. If there was an upset...Inglourious Basterds or Up in the Air. Least Likely Winner: The Blind Side

Best Director: Kathryn Bigelow is WAY OUT FRONT. Cameron is a distant second. Least Likely: Lee Daniels for Precious

Best Actor: Jeff Bridges in a walk. Clooney a distant challenger. Least Likely: Morgan Freeman.

Best Actress: Sandra Bullock has a big lead with Meryl Streep her only real competition (this is where I think an upset happens and Streep wins). Least Likely: Helen Mirren

Best Supporting Actor: Engrave Christoph Waltz's trophy now. Purported challenge: Harrelson. Least Likely: Matt Damon

Best Supporting Actress: Mo'Nique (and has been for months)...if there were a challenger it might be: Anna Kendrick (but she won't be). Least Likely: Penelope Cruz

Best Adapted Screenplay: Up in the Air is the massive favorite. Challenger...uh...Precious? Least Likely: In the Loop

Best Original Screenplay: An actual fight here! Hurt Locker has a tiny lead over Basterds (I'm leaning towards Basterds)...Least Likely: The Messenger

Animated: Up...Duh. Least Likely: The Secret of Kells

Documentary: The Cove has a substantial edge over Food Inc. Least Likely: Which Way Home

Foreign: actual contested category...a 3 way battle brewing between The White Ribbon, A Prophet and The Secret of Her Eyes

Short Doc: The Last Truck way out front

Live Short: The Door in the lead

Art Direction: Avatar is the prohibitive favorite...Least Likely: Parnassus

Cinematography: A close race with Avatar barely in front of The Hurt Locker. Least Likely: Harry Potter

Costumes: Young Victoria is the prohibitive favorite. Least Likely: Parnassus

Film Editing: A close battle here again with Hurt Locker leading Avatar slightly. Least Likely: Precious

Sound Editing: Avatar is way out front. Least Likely: Inglourious Basterds

Sound Mixing: Again Avatar in a walk. Least Likely: Transformers

Visual Effects: Anyone think Avatar doesn't win this? Least Likely...well the other two

Score: Up has a big lead here. Least Likely: The Hurt Locker

Song: The Weary Kind from Crazy Heart easily. Least Likely: Paris 36

Animated Short: A Matter of Loaf and Death

Final thoughts and personal predictions next week...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

TFF #36 and The Oscar Clearinghouse

The Official Telluride Film Festival Website has posted a brief release touting the films that played the fest this year and have been Oscar nominated.

You can find it here:

Coming this week...charting the favorites to win on March 7...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

TFF #36 and The Oscar Clearinghouse # 10

Here are this morning's Oscar nominations courtesy of Entertainment Weekly:

Best Picture:

Comment: Blind Side in and Invictus out. I'm not surprised that Invictus didn't get nominated...I am a little surprised that The Blind Side is what grabbed what had been its spot for the last several months. The Chart goes

Best Actor: Jeff Bridges, Crazy Heart, George Clooney, Up in the Air, Colin Firth, A Single Man, Morgan Freeman, Invictus, Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker.

Comment: Chart and I both said these five. Seems the Invictus swoon did not sink either Freeman or Damon.
Best Actress: Sandra Bullock, The Blind Side, Helen Mirren, The Last Station, Carey Mulligan, An Education, Gabourey Sidibe, Precious, Meryl Streep, Julie & Julia.

Comment: Again, the chart and I 5 for surprises at all here.

Best Supporting Actor: Matt Damon, Invictus, Woody Harrelson, The Messenger, Christopher Plummer, The Last Station, Stanley Tucci, The Lovely Bones, Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds.

Comment: Again 5 for 5 with the chart. I lose out having picked The Hurt Locker's Anthony Mackie instead of Damon. I was personally still hoping for a little love for Alfred Molina.

Best Supporting Actress: Penélope Cruz, Nine, Vera Farmiga, Up in the Air, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Crazy Heart, Anna Kendrick, Up in the Air, Mo’Nique, Precious .

Comment: The chart hits 4 of 5...missing Maggie Gyllenhall for Julianne Moore. i missed that as well in addition to thinking Samantha Morton could supplant Penelope I go 3 for 5.

Best Director: Kathryn Bigelow, The Hurt Locker, James Cameron, Avatar, Lee Daniels, Precious, Jason Reitman, Up in the Air, Quentin Tarantino, Inglourious Basterds.

Comment: Done and done.

Comment: Chart and I 4 for 5...missed The Messenger for (500) Days of Summer...and makes you wonder if The Messenger was kind of close in the Best Picture category?

Best Adapted Screenplay: Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Armando Iannucci & Tony Roche, In the Loop, Neill Blomkamp & Terri Tatchell, District 9, Geoffrey Fletcher, Precious, Nick Hornby, An Education, Jason Reitman & Sheldon Turner, Up in the Air .

Comment: The Chart goes 4 for 5 and I go 3 for 5. The Chart and I both miss "In the Loop" I also had Julie and Julia instead of District 9. In the Loop wasn't a total surprise as it had been floating around the chart on and off for quite some time.

Best Animated Film: Coraline, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Princess and the Frog, The Secret of Kells, Up.

Comment: Me and the chart 4 for 5. "The Secret of the Kells"???What the?

Best Foreign Language Film: El Secreto do Sus Ojos (Argentina), Un Prophete (France), The White Ribbon (Germany), Ajami (Israel), The Milk of Sorrow (Peru).

Comment:3 for 5 for the chart and me...I think the absence of Samson and Delilah is kind of a surprise.
Best Art Direction: Avatar, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, Nine, Sherlock Holmes, The Young Victoria .

Comment: Man, am I glad I didn't pick the tech categories this year...the chart goes 1 for 5...sheesh...It got Avatar right and missed everything else.

Best Cinematography:Avatar, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, The Hurt Locker, Inglourious Basterds, The White Ribbon

Comment:Chart hits 4 for 5 missing Harry Potter with Nine

Best Costume Design: Bright Star, Coco Before Chanel, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, Nine, The Young Victoria.

Comment: Chart goes 3 for 5 missing Parnassus and Coco with Basterds and Sherlock.

Best Documentary: Burma VJ, The Cove, Food, Inc., The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers, Which Way Home.

Comment: Chart was a whopping 2 for 5. Most Dangerous Man was sort of a surprise...Which Way Home is a stunner.

Best Editing: Avatar, District 9, The Hurt Locker, Inglourious Basterds, Precious.

Comment: $ for 5. Missing Precious for UITA...

Best Makeup: Il Divo, Star Trek, The Young Victoria.

Comment: 1 for 3...

Best Score: Avatar, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Hurt Locker, Sherlock Holmes, Up.

Comment: Chart goes 3 for 5. Missed Fox and The Hurt Locker.

Best Song: “Almost There,” The Princess and the Frog, Randy Newman,

“Down in New Orleans,” The Princess and the Frog, Randy Newman

“Loin de Paname,” Paris 36, Reinhardt Wagner & Frank Thomas

“Take It All,” Nine, Maury Weston

“The Weary Kind,” Crazy Heart, T-Bone Burnett & Ryan Bingham

Comment: 3 for 5 with Take It All being the big surprise.

Best Sound Editing: Avatar, The Hurt Locker, Inglourious Basterds, Star Trek, Up

Comment: 3 for 5...

Best Sound Mixing: Avatar, The Hurt Locker, Inglourious , Trek, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Comment: 4 for 5

Best Visual Effects: Avatar, District 9, Star Trek

Comment: Got 'em...there's a shocker!

Best Documentary Short: China’s Unnatural Disaster: The Tears of Sichuan Province, The Last Campaign of Governor Booth Gardner, The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant, Music by Prudence, Rabbit à la Berlin

Best Animated Short: French Roast, Granny O’Grimm’s Sleeping Beauty, The Lady and the Reaper (La Dama y la Muerte) Logorama, A Matter of Loaf and Death

Best Live-Action Short:The Door, Instead of Abracadabra, Kavi, Miracle Fish, The New Tenants

Monday, February 1, 2010

TFF #36 and The Oscar Clearinghouse # 9

Final number-crunching before tomorrow's nominations (data from : And the Winner Is, In Contention, Movie City News, The Oscar Guy, Awards Circuit, Rope of Silicon and Film Misery)...TELLURIDE PICS IN CAPS AND BOLD...

Opening notes: DGA/PGA wins for The Hurt it the lock to win Best Picture now??? I had thought for some time that Cameron would win Best Director and that Up in the Air would win Best Picture...I'm re-evaluating that now...

Best Picture: 1) The Hurt Locker, 2) Avatar, 3) Inglorious Basterds, 4) UP IN THE AIR, 5) Precious, 6) AN EDUCATION, 7) Up, 8) Invictus, 9) District 9, 10) A Serious Man.

Spoilers: The Messenger, (500) Days of Summer, Nine, The Hangover, Star Trek

Comment:The top ten are so far out front that if anything else got a nod it would be pretty look for a shocker or two...

My picks: I'll go with the chart...but...Messenger in and Invictus out???

Best Director: 1) Bigelow/Locker, 2) Cameron/Avatar, 3) Tarantino/Basterds, 4) REITMAN/UITA, 5) Daniels/Precious

Spoilers: Blomkamp/Dist. 9, Eastwood/Invictus

My Picks: Charts are right, no surprises here.

Best Actor: 1) Jeff Bridges/Crazy Heart, 2) GEORGE CLOONEY/UITA, 3) Colin Firth/A Single Man, 4) Jeremy Renner/Hurt Locker, 5) Morgan Feeman/Invictus

Spoilers: MORTENSEN/THE ROAD, Maguire/Brothers

My Picks: Gotta agree with the chart...although, like everything else with Invictus, Freeman has been losing steam...

Best Actress: 1) Sandra Bullock/The Blind Side, 2) Meryl Streep/Julie and Julia, 3) CAREY MULLIGAN/AN EDUCATION, 3) Gabourey Sidibe/Precious, 5) HELEN MIRREN/THE LAST STATION.

Spoilers: Emily Blunt/Young Victoria, ABBY CORNISH/BRIGHT STAR, Marion Cotillard/Nine

My Picks: These 5 have been set for a long time.

Best Supporting Actor: 1) Christoph Waltz/Inglorious Basterds, 2) Woody Harrelson/The Messenger, 3) Stanley Tucci/The Lovely Bones, 4) CHRISTOPHER PLUMMER/THE LAST STATION, 5) Matt Damon/Invictus

Spoliers: ALFRED MOLINA/AN EDUCATION, Anthony Mackie/The Hurt Locker, Christian McKay/Orson Welles and Me

My Picks: Take the top 4 but move Matt Damon out in favor of Anthony Mackie.

Best Supporting Actress: 1) Mo'Nique, 2) ANNA KENDRICK/UITA, 3) VERA FARMIGA/UITA, 4) Julianne Moore/A Single Man, 5) Penelope Cruz/Nine

Spoilers: Samantha Morton/The Messenger, MaggieGyllenhall/Crazy Heart

My Picks: There's a real battle royale for the fifth spot here. I'll go with the chart top 4 and Samantha Morton.

Best Adapted Screenplay: 1) UP IN THE AIR, 2) Precious, 3) AN EDUCATION, 4) District 9, 5) Crazy Heart

Spoliers: Fantastic Mr. Fox, A Single Man, Julie and Julia

My Picks: No place else is the collapse of Invictus more clearly seen than in this category. It's totally gone...I'll go with UITA, Precious, EDUCATION, Crazy Heart and Julie and Julia.

Best Original Screenplay: 1) The Hurt Locker, 2) Inglorious Basterds, 3) (500) Days of Summer, 4) Up, 5) A Serious Man

Spoliers: The Hangover, Avatar

My Picks: Go with the charted 5

Best Foreign Film: 1) (tie) A PROPHET and THE WHITE RIBBON, 3)Ajami, 4) SAMSON AND DELILAH, 5) Winter in Wartime

Spoiler: Kelin

My Picks: I'll agree with the chart.

Best Documentary: 1) (tie) Food Inc and The Cove, 3) Every Little Step, 4) Mugabe and the White African, 5) Under Our Skin

Spoilers: Beaches of Agnes, Burma VJ, Facing Ali, Valentino: The Last Emperor.

My Picks: Food, Cove, Every Little Step, Facing Ali and Beaches of Agnes

Short Doc: LAST TRUCK, Lt. Wataba, Music by Prudence, Tell Them Anything

My Picks: OK

Tech Nominations:

Art Direction: Avatar, Inglorious Basterds, A Serious Man, Public Enemies and Where the Wild Things Are. Spoilers: Sherlock Holmes, District 9, Start Trek, Bright Star

Cinematography: Avatar, Hurt Locker, Inglorious Basterds, Nine, THE WHITE RIBBON. Spoilers: District 9

Costumes: BRIGHT STAR, Inglorious Basterds, Nine, Sherlock Holmes, Young Victoria


Film Editing: Avatar, The Hurt Locker, UP IN THE AIR, District 9, Inglorious Basterds

Spoilers: Star Trek

Makeup: District 9, Star Trek, Dr. Parnassuss

Original Score: Avatar, The Informant!, Sherlock Holmes, Up, A Singlr Man

Spoiler: Fantastic Mr. Fox

Original Song: Crazy Heart, Nine, everybody's Fine, Princess and the Frog, Where the Wild Things Are

Spoilers: Second nominations for Nine and/or Princess and the Frog

Sound Editing: Avatar, District 9, The Hurt Locker, Star Trek, Transformers


Sound Mixing: Avatar, District 9, Star Trek, The Hurt Locker, Transformers

Spoiler: Up

Visual Effects: Avatar, District 9, Star Trek


Animated: 1) Up, 2) Fantastic Mr. Fox, Coraline, 4) The Princess and the Frog, 5) Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs

Spoiler: Ponyo

Multiple Nominations per the charts:


The Hurt Locker-8

UP IN THE AIR, Inglorious Basterds, District 9-7

Precious, Nine, Star Trek-5


AN EDUCATION, Invictus, A Serious Man, Crazy Heart, A Single Man-3

THE WHITE RIBBON, THE LAST STATION, Sherlock Holmes, Princess and the Frog, Transformers-2

Comments: It's hard for me to believe that The Messenger, Crazy Heart, A Single Man and The Last Station may end up with multiple acting nominations, but NOT get into the expanded field of 10 Best Picture nominees. I can see each of them eking out an extra nom or two for screenplay or costuming and slipping into the ten...What are the films that are currently on the chart that are vulnerable: Invictus, Up, A Serious Man, District 9...

Saw The Hurt Locker this weekend, finally...good, not great...over-rated! Capping what has turned out to be a fairly mediocre year...

Last play for why The Road could sneak in...Moretensen is loved...and it's a good performance...they have to fill 10 spots. It's on 18 top ten lists (currently at #28 on the Movie City News critics scoreboard for the year...but a lot of what is ahead of it won't have a shot at a nomination...)and it was the best film of the year...

Watch for....

* If Maggie Gyllenhall gets nommed for Crazy Heart and/or it gets a screenplay's got a shot at a Best Picture nom

*If A Single Man gets a screenplay could be in the Best Picture pool

*If Samantha Morton gets a nomination...The Messenger could be a Best Picture nom

*If Matt Damon does NOT get a Supporting nom...Invictus is in some trouble

*If The Last Station gets a screenplay could be in the Best Picture lineup

And finally...if the charts are correct, TFF #36 will post 18 nominations tomorrow...