Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea. —Henry Fielding

14 February 2007

The Nominees: Part VII of VIII (Aren't We Done Yet?)


THE ILLUSIONIST
1 Nomination:


  • Best Cinematography: Dick Pope

  • Director: Neil Burger (Interview with the Assassin)
    Cast: Edward Norton, Jessica Biel, Paul Giamatti, Rufus Sewell

    Zzzzz. This is a bad movie, and don't see it for the cinematography either. I mean, yay, Dick Pope's first nomination and all, but from what I recall of this movie (and I spent a lot of it wishing I would fall asleep), I remember that there aren't very many wide shots because it's kind of a low budget affair with very few sets. This is mostly an interior picture. And I could tell that as I was watching it. I am skeptical of this nomination. There are much more deserving pictures that might've appeared here. Including Best Picture nominee The Departed, which is brilliantly shot.
    Will Win: N/A
    Might Also Win: N/A
    My Rating: #65 out of 71


    MARIE ANTOINETTE
    1 Nomination:


  • Best Costume Design: Milena Canonero (The Affair of the Necklace, Titus, Dick Tracy, Tucker: the Man and His Dream, Out of Africa, and two trophies: Chariots of Fire and Barry Lyndon)

  • Director: Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation, The Virgin Suicides)
    Cast: Kirsten Dunst, Jason Schwartzman, Steve Coogan, Shirley Henderson, Rip Torn, Molly Shannon, Asia Argento

    Very good movie. Awful reviews. But the costumes in this film are really a vision. And Canonero hasn't won since 1982. I want her to win again. This category seems sort of tough to predict, but I think I will predict it for the win... mostly because Canonero is who I'm rooting for.
    Will Win: Best Costume Design
    Might Also Win: N/A
    My Rating: #23 out of 71

    CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER
    1 Nomination:


  • Best Costume Design: Yee Chung Man

  • Director: Zhang Yimou (House of Flying Daggers, Hero, Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, To Live, Shanghai Triad)
    Cast: Chow Yun Fat, Gong Li, Jay Chou, Ye Liu, Man Li, Jin Chen

    This movie is fun stuff. Of course, almost nobody saw it. It's not a big martial arts/swordfighting bonanza like Flying Daggers and Hero were. And is it just me or was it not marketed as much as those two flicks were? It has all of the eye candy of those films and more if you ask me. Anyway, congrats to the designer on this nomination. And let's hope for more stuff of substance from Yimou. He is a master filmmaker with a lot more good stuff in him. And any excuse to see Gong Li is a good one in my opinion.
    Will Win: N/A
    Might Also Win: N/A
    My Rating: #33 out of 71

    THE GOOD SHEPHERD
    1 Nomination:


  • Best Art Direction: Jeannine Oppewall (Seabiscuit, Pleasantville, L.A. Confidential), Gretchen Rau (The Last Samurai, Memoirs of a Geisha—she died last year) & Leslie E. Rollins

  • Director: Robert De Niro
    Cast: Matt Damon, Angelina Jolie, Alec Baldwin, Robert De Niro, William Hurt, Gabriel Macht, Timothy Hutton, Lee Pace, Joe Pesci, Billy Crudup, John Turturro, Michael Gambon

    Just look at that cast! And then look at my rating down below. I have no explanation for this film or this film's appearance among the nominees for an Academy Award. The only thing I can think of is that everyone who saw this movie just stared at the sets because the plot was so sleep-inducing. Actually, in all fairness, the film does cover a huge span of time and involves lots of beautiful set work. It starts at the beginning of the cold war, so the look of the film really is exquisite, particularly when the film moves across the pond to England and the USSR. In addition, there is a whole plotline that involves the contents of a single specific room. The plot is, in a way about the set. But goddamn, this film is awful.
    Will Win: N/A
    Might Also Win: N/A
    My Rating: #71 out of 71

    THE GOOD GERMAN
    1 Nomination:


  • Best Original Score: Thomas Newman (Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, Finding Nemo, Road to Perdition, American Beauty, Unstrung Heroes, Little Women, The Shawshank Redemption)

  • Director: Steven Soderbergh (Ocean's Eleven and Twelve, Erin Brockovich, Full Frontal, Traffic, Out of Sight, The Limey)
    Cast: George Clooney, Cate Blanchett, Tobey Maguire

    Does anyone have an explanation for how this film missed out on a cinematography nomination? I mean, look at that picture! It's gorgeous. But let's talk about Thomas Newman. My favorite of his scores is the underappreciated Nemo, but this guy has obviously been doing a lot of good work in a very short time. Shawshank was 1995 and it's 2007. That's thirteen years and Newman now has eight nominations. But no wins yet. I don't think he's going to win with this one either, but he needs to get one soon. I also want to talk a little about the score that's actually nominated here. Newman's music has a distinctive sound. We all know the way it works from the "Six Feet Under" soundtrack. Kind of minimalist. High on precussions and low on big orchestrations. But not the score for The Good German. Newman has composed a huge, 1940's movie score. It's grand and opulent and very beautiful. So this is a well-deserved nomination. Hand this man an Oscar soon!
    Will Win: N/A
    Might Also Win: N/A
    My Rating: Unranked: This film has not appeared in Tallahassee just yet.

    One more to go...