Friday, February 19, 2010

The Top Ten Analysis

Here, are as I see them, the pros and cons of the 10 Best Pictures and their chances of winning.

  • 9 Oscar nominations, the most of this year (tied with The Hurt Locker)
  • Biggest box office smash of all time
  • Golden Globe winner for Best Picture drama (the first ever for a science fiction film)
  • Widespread nominations from many of the filmmaking disciplines (art direction, cinematography, editing, sound, music), as well as widespread love from the guilds.
  • ABC would love for it to happen (i.e.-- let's boost those sagging Oscar ratings)
  • James Cameron has crafted and undisputed game-changer of a film-- love it or hate it, it's a force to be reckoned with...
  • Widespread guild love didn't come from the actors branch (which is the largest portion of the Academy), nor the writers branch-- no film has won best picture without a screenplay or acting nomination since Grand Hotel in the 1930s.
  • Some may not take it seriously-- the Academy is made up of stuffy, older film snobs, and genre films have never been their cup of tea.
  • Neither has science-fiction films, despite two being nominated this year.
  • It's the biggest box office champ of all time, that may hurt it, as much as it helps.
  • James Cameron may be respected, but I doubt he's loved-- the Academy roots for it's friends.
  • Cameron and team, already won for a game-changer in 1998; that may be enough.

  • Uplifting message films are right up the Oscar's alley (Gentleman's Agreement; Kramer vs. Kramer; Forrest Gump; Rain Man)
  • True story!
  • Surprise big hit.
  • Sandra Bullock's big year, with the media going gong crazy over her.
  • The quality of film-- many like it (even love it?), but is there much passion for it.
  • Sandra Bullock?
  • The liberal Academy may not stomach it very well.
  • Sports movies never win the big prize, except for Rocky-- is this on that level?
  • Wasn't nominated for a film editing Oscar, no film has won picture without a film editing nomination since 1980's Ordinary People.
  • Picture and Bullock were the only nominations it got-- no director, no screenplay.

  • Critically accalimed film produced by Peter Jackson.
  • Introduces several fresh talents: director Neill Blomkamp and actor Sharlto Copely
  • Nominated for film editing Oscar, a true must for serious picture contention.
  • Widespread guild love-- it even won over the writers.
  • It's a classic allegory cleverly disguised as genre film-- voters may appreciate the artistry.
  • The movie wasn't expensive to make, but it doesn't look that way.
  • Surprise big hit.
  • Sci-Fi-- the Academy doesn't get it, even when it's great (see: 2001: A Space Odyssey; Close Encouinters of the Third Kind)
  • The film is fairly violent, I could see older Academy members getting turned off by it, or not watching it at all.
  • No acting nominations, the actors are the biggest branch of the Academy.
  • No nomination for direction.

  • British-- the Academy lurves that (Tom Jones; Hamlet)
  • Period Film.
  • Got acting and writing nods.
  • Directed by a woman; that's never happened.
  • It would be the lowest grossing best picture ever-- this is usually a fairly populist group.
  • The actors and writers liked it, but no one else did apparently-- no film editing nomination-- no film has won picture without a film editing nomination since 1980's Ordinary People.
  • No nomination for direction-- it's in the bottom five for sure.
  • How many people have actually seen it?

  • Nominated for most awards (tied with Avatar)
  • Winner of the DGA award, the most common link to Best Picture.
  • Winner of the PGA award, meaning the Producers liked it too.
  • Widespread guild and tech love (cinematography, film editing, score, sound)
  • Nominated for acting and writing-- the only film besides Inglourious Basterds and Precious to sweep all fields.
  • Timely subject matter
  • War drama-- the Oscars love war movies-- going all the way back to All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)
  • For the first time ever, a film directed by a woman is one of the front runners for best picture-- history making-- the Academy likes to do the right thing.
  • Industry admiration for Bigelow.
  • Press admiration for Bigelow.
  • It would be the lowest grossing best picture winner ever!

  • Widespread guild love, garnering nominations for acting, writing, cinematography, editing, sound.
  • Actors and writers love it (SAG Ensemble winner: think Crash)
  • New found respectability for Quentin Tarantino--he's an auteur, and he's popular.
  • War and period film, albeit revisionist.
  • Surprise big hit.
  • Harvey Weinstein is back the film (think: everything is the 1990s and Kate Winslet last year.)
  • Still a fairly polarizing film.
  • Christoph Waltz is favored to win-- some may think that's enough.
  • Harvey Weinstein.

  • Based on a novel-- adapted screenplays win more often than originals.
  • Received nominations for acting, writing and film editing-- widespread love.
  • Decent box office, if a bit short than expected from metoric press coverage.
  • One of the most polarizing films of the year.
  • Would be one of the lowest grossing best picture winners ever, probably the lowest with inflation.
  • About African American women-- the Academy is sexist, and a bit racist sometimes.
  • General momentum for the film has been downhill since wide release-- not a good sign.

  • The Coen brothers are very respected in the Academy: Fargo; No Country For Old Men.
  • Nominated for screenplay.
  • Picture and screenplay are all it got.
  • No acting nominations-- the actors make up the biggest portion of the Academy.
  • No film editing nominations-- no one has managed that since since 1980's Ordinary People.
  • Would be the lowest grossing best picture ever.
  • No director nomination-- it was in the bottom five for sure.
  • Polarizing film-- many loved; equally many hate it.

  • Beautifully realized, masterfully storytelling-- the quality is there, and I bet few will argue with that.
  • Pixar is a venerable institution-- it's won lots of Oscars, but this is it's first best picture.
  • Nominated for screenplay, sound, and score-- widespread academy appeal.
  • Massive big hit.
  • It's animated, and the bias for them is no secret for Academy members, as unfair has it may seem to animation enthusiasts.
  • It will likely win animated feature, why honor it here.
  • No editing nomination-- not since 1980 and Ordinary People has that happened.
  • It was surely in the bottom five, sadly.

  • Actors and writers movie for sure; actors make up the biggest part of the Academy.
  • Favored for adapted screenplay-- most best picture winners are based on other material.
  • Timely subject matter-- probably the timiliest of all ten nominees with the focus of losing jobs.
  • George Clooney is very popular.
  • Jason Reitman has been working this movie like crazy, but many may feels he's due after Thank You For Smoking and Juno.
  • Nominated for best director (was most likely in the Top Five)
  • Good Box Office, even if it never really became the Zeitgeist movie many thought it would.
  • Surprisingly no film editing nomination-- it's been twenty years since a film won without it, and many point that to the reason Brokeback Mountain lost to Crash in 2005.
  • A loss of momentum.
  • Many feel that Jason Reitman may have been over-working this.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...