Tuesday, January 24, 2012
2011 Academy Award Nominations are in
The nominations are in, and they arrived with a few surprises, and a few more disappointments.
First of all, I am deeply saddened that both Ryan Gosling, and Leo DiCaprio were left out. J.Edgar may not have been a well received film, but DiCaprio's performance was a clear stand out. Then Gosling, between Drive and Ides of March he seemed to be a guarantee, but nothing. In fact it would seem that the majority of the Academy members didn't have the same feeling towards Drive as the rest of us, because it didn't get any nominations in any of the major categories. They did surprisingly seem to like Bridesmaids.
Ever thought you could say this "Academy Award Nominee Jonah Hill"? Well, you can say that now as he was given a Supporting actor nomination for Moneyball. That was probably the biggest surprise of the morning, even the crowd reaction suggests nobody saw that coming. But, I gotta admit that it was well deserved. Speaking of Supporting Roles, no Albert Brooks for Drive was a sad surprise. Nick Nolte getting a nod for Warrior was a nice surprise. I haven't seen the film, but I love Nolte!
So who are the big from runners this year? I am VERY pleased to say Hugo, and The Artist! My two favorite films of last year have cleaned up, Hugo especially with 11 nominations, including Best Director and Best Picture. The Artist faired better in the major categories by claiming a nomination for Best Picture, Art Direction, Director, Actress, and Actor.
Another big surprise was the best picture nomination going to Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close. A film that I have not yet seen, but thought it looked pretty good. Though it wasn't very critically acclaimed, it was apparently beloved by the Academy.
A big relief for me, and a first in many years, was the absence of last years Pixar film. The major-misfire sequel Cars 2. It was the first Pixar animated film to be poorly recieved (I have not seen it, and plan not to as it looks terrible). For years I have been jokingly calling the Best Animated Feature category the "Pixar Award", but all joking aside they have always deserved their awards. This year however if Cars 2 was even nominated, then I would have seriously lost a lot of faith in the academy's judgement. Combine that with the fact that Bridesmaids, a ranchy comedy that is a sort of film you would never see anywhere near golden statue, receiving a couple nominations and there is a small sign that the academy is either lightening up, or getting younger.
Other than that, I must admit I am not completely surprised with rest of the nominations. A lot of what I expected is present. All bias aside I really do expect Scorsese to earn his second Oscar for Hugo. As for best picture I am torn, I love The Artist a lot, but I want Hugo to take it home. However both these major players need to watch their back, because I would not be surprised if The Descendants jumps in "Shakespere in Love style" and steals it from underneath them. I guess we will all find out February 26th when the 84th Academy Awards airs...
Here is a few of the more major categories, and highlighted are who I WANT to claim the prize, not necessarily who I think will.
"The Tree of Life"
"Midnight in Paris"
"Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close"
Demián Bichir, "A Better Life"
George Clooney, "The Descendants"
Jean Dujardin, "The Artist"
Gary Oldman, "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy "
Brad Pitt, "Moneyball"
Glenn Close, "Albert Nobbs"
Viola Davis, "The Help"
Rooney Mara, "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo "
Meryl Streep, "The Iron Lady"
Michelle Williams, "My Week With Marilyn"
Michel Hazanavicius, "The Artist"
Alexander Payne, "The Descendants"
Martin Scorsese, "Hugo"
Woody Allen, "Midnight in Paris"
Terrence Malick, "The Tree of Life"
Kenneth Branagh in "My Week with Marilyn"
Jonah Hill in "Moneyball"
Nick Nolte in "Warrior"
Christopher Plummer in "Beginners"
Max von Sydow in "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close"
Bérénice Bejo in "The Artist"
Jessica Chastain in "The Help"
Melissa McCarthy in "Bridesmaids"
Janet McTeer in "Albert Nobbs"
Octavia Spencer in "The Help"
ANIMATED FEATURE FILM
"A Cat in Paris" Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli
"Chico & Rita" Fernando Trueba and Javier Mariscal
"Kung Fu Panda 2" Jennifer Yuh Nelson
"Puss in Boots" Chris Miller
"Rango" Gore Verbinski
"The Artist" Production Design: Laurence Bennett; Set Decoration: Robert Gould
"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2" Production Design: Stuart Craig; Set Decoration: Stephenie McMillan
"Hugo" Production Design: Dante Ferretti; Set Decoration: Francesca Lo Schiavo
"Midnight in Paris" Production Design: Anne Seibel; Set Decoration: Hélène Dubreuil
"War Horse" Production Design: Rick Carter; Set Decoration: Lee Sandales
See the full list of Nominees here