- Director: Alexander Payne (Sideways)
- Actor: George Clooney (Syriana, Michael Clayton, Up in the Air)
- Adapted Screenplay: Alexander Payne (Election, Sideways), Nat Faxon, Jim Rash
Cast: George Clooney, Shailene Woodley, Beau Bridges, Nick Krause, Amara Miller, Robert Forster, Judy Greer, Matthew Lillard.
This is great. I am not used to really liking Alexander Payne movies, but this one was moving and sensitive and generous, and the performances are truly excellent. This already won the Golden Globe for Best Picture (Drama) which means that a lot of people like it even though it got only five nominations and Woodley got snubbed in the Supporting Actress category (a bit of a surprise). The screenplay may still win. If Clooney wins it will be his second acting Oscar. And he is great in this, so who could begrudge him?
Will Win: Adapted Screenplay
Could Win: Actor
My Rating: #16 out of 64
- Actress: Rooney Mara
- Cinematography: Jeff Cronenweth (The Social Network)
- Sound Mixing
- Sound Editing
Director: David Fincher
Cast: Daniel Craig, Mara, Robin Wright, Christopher Plummer, Stellan Skarsgård, Goran Visnjic, Joely Richardson.
Okay, so this wasn't my favorite movie in the world when it came out – I spent a lot of time comparing it to last year's Swedish version – but it is easily one of the best made film's of the year and this movie seriously got robbed of some nominations and I'll say it. Most importantly, I think it really deserved a nomination for Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross's incredible score, and while I didn't think the screenplay was anything to write home about, the art direction certainly was. Dragon Tattoo definitely deserves its cinematography nod here, and I am betting on it to take home one trophy.
Will Win: Sound Mixing
Could Win: Cinematography, Editing, Sound Editing
My Rating: #33 out of 64
- Director: Woody Allen (Bullets over Broadway, Crimes and Misdemeanors, Hannah and Her Sisters, Broadway Danny Rose, Interiors, Annie Hall)
- Original Screenplay: Woody Allen (Match Point, Deconstructing Harry, Mighty Aphrodite, Bullets over Broadway, Husbands and Wives, Alice, Crimes and Misdemeanors, Radio Days, Hannah and Her Sisters, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Broadway Danny Rose, Manhattan, Interiors, Annie Hall)
- Art Direction: Hélène Dubreuil, Anne Seibel
Cast: Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard, Carla Bruni, Kathy Bates, Tom Hiddleston, Alison Pill, Adrien Brody, Corey Stoll, Michael Sheen, Kurt Fuller, Mimi Kennedy.
This is why I can't be mad at the Academy for things. My favorites still get nominated for things. Four of the films in my top ten are nominated for Best Picture. It's hard for me to get angry about things like that. This movie deserves every accolade its getting. It's very funny, and smart, and boasts some superb performances. If you look at Allen's name up under Screenplay right there, you'll see that this is his fourteenth nomination for writing a movie. He is the man with the most writing nominations ever. He's won twice. I don't expect him to win this year, but the man is brilliant, and – evidently – he's back.
Will Win: N/A
Could Win: Screenplay
My Rating: #9 out of 64
- Actress: Viola Davis (Doubt)
- Supporting Actress: Octavia Spencer
- Supporting Actress: Jessica Chastain
Director: Tate Taylor
Cast: Emma Stone, Davis, Bryce Dallas Howard, Spencer, Chastain, Chris Lowell, Allison Janney, Cicely Tyson, Sissy Spacek, Ahna O'Reilly, Mike Vogel.
Viola Davis is great in this – she's also great in everything: Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, Solaris, Far from Heaven, Antwone Fisher. Even bad movies: Doubt, It's Kind of a Funny Story, you get the idea. I saw her once in a production of Lynn Nottage's Intimate Apparel and, well, I just love her. I will be completely delighted if she wins Best Actress. She's wonderful and she deserves an Oscar. Octavia Spencer has been doing excellent supporting work for years, as well, so I am delighted to see her get her due. And... I am not going to say another word about The Help.
Will Win: Supporting Actress
Could Win: Actress (this is really close, I think, but I am predicting Meryl to win)
My Rating: #55 out of 64