Juan’s Two Cents – The 85th Academy Award Nominees Edition
Just like last year, I made an obscenely long list of all the positives and negatives that came with the Oscar nominees. This year, I’ve got a whole lot of frustrations, so get ready for a whole lot of bitching. Remember people, these are my mostly instant reactions to the wonderful world of the Academy. Some of these are popular and some will leave many surprised. So, y’know, whatever. Have fun.
- Likely Winner: Lincoln 
- Most Deserving: Django Unchained 
- Alternate Most Deserving: Argo 
- Snubbed: The Master , Moonrise Kingdom , and Killer Joe 
- Pleasant Surprise: Django Unchained. While Tarantino is missing on the director ballot, it’s still really lovely to see Django up for a BP award.
- Biggest “Fuck You”: Les Misérables  reminds us all that even if you have no fucking clue how to do anything important to a film, all you need is a really fucking big sob story to slide into the best picture category. Seriously though. Tom Hooper’s direction is absolute shit, the lead performances are messy, and even though you’ve got a few great supporting performances and some nice costume design, you’ve still got an ultimately mediocre at best film on your hands.
- Likely Winner: Steven Spielberg for Lincoln
- Most Deserving: Ang Lee for Life of Pi 
- Snubbed: Paul Thomas Anderson for The Master & Ben Affleck for Argo
- Glad You’re Not Here: Tom Hooper for Les Misérables
- Biggest “Fuck You”: Everybody here except for Ang Lee. Haneke’s Amour is one of his coldest pieces yet regardless of impressive performances, Zeitlin is apparently nominated for Shaky Ass Cam: The Movie , Spielberg has no clear style or aim throughout what should have been titled The Fourteenth Amendment, and O. Russell’s mental illness romcom is probably the most deserving in this undeserving bunch which makes no sense because it’s not even all that great.
- Likely Winner: Daniel Day-Lewis for Lincoln
- Most Deserving: Joaquin Phoenix for The Master
- Snubbed: Matthew McConaughey for Killer Joe
- Pleasant Surprise: After losing all hope, I nearly cried joyful tears this morning when Joaquin Phoenix showed up on the screen between Seth MacFarlane’s terrible fucking jokes.
- Why Should I Give A Shit?: Surprise: I shouldn’t. I don’t really care enough about this category to bitch, but I don’t think anyone else deserves a nomination here that much. I mean, there’s a billion people more deserving than this bunch, but whatever. I’m not surprised that DDL is taking another one home for what was practically a guest spot in a miniseries about the fourteenth amendment. It’s the fucking Academy.
- Likely Winner: Jessica Chastain for Zero Dark Thirty
- Most Deserving: Naomi Watts for The Impossible 
- Snubbed: Keira Knightley for Anna Karenina  and Marion Cotillard for Rust & Bone
- Pleasant Surprise: I was getting pretty nervous about Watts getting a nomination in this one with the competition looking tight at first, and I adore her so friggin much. Plus, she gives a hell of a performance in it.
- Why Should I Give A Shit?: Another category where I frankly don’t care. I love Chastain, but I didn’t care for Zero Dark Thirty as much as everyone else. I dug Lawrence in Silver Linings Playbook, but it’s not really a performance worth giving an Oscar to. Riva was easily the best part of Amour no matter how I feel about the film as a whole, and I’m in the immense minority when I say Wallis was just serviceable in her 90% narration role.
- Likely Winner: Tommy Lee Jones for Lincoln
- Most Deserving: Philip Seymour Hoffman for The Master
- Snubbed: Leonardo DiCaprio for Django Unchained & Matthew McConaughey for Magic Mike 
- Why Should I Give A Shit?: Again. No one should.
- Likely Winner: Anne Hathaway for Les Misérables
- Most Deserving: Anne Hathaway for Les Misérables
- Snubbed: Nicole Kidman for The Paperboy 
- Huh???: Jacki Weaver for Silver Linings Playbook??? She was in it for a whole of five minutes and I can’t really say that she left any impression on me whatsoever.
More nominees on the next page!
Lincoln is a big Oscar-bait, but I’m surprised it got so much love. The only way I can explain that is that it IS a weak year in film, so they feel like they need to award the same old same old. I thought Spielberg’s take on it was boring, overlong and maybe… even quite education, which does not make a good movie (see: The Founding of a Republic, LOL). I think the only awards that Lincoln deserves are Production, Costume design, and acting nods for Day-Lewis and Tommy xD
Also, I was mildly surprised that we’re on the same page about Haneke’s Amour. LOL. Someone tweeted that Amour is The Notebook but European, which summed up a lot of that exactly for me. From the foreign picks, I’ve also seen Kon-Tiki, which… meh. And I’m about to check out No.
I think Cloud Atlas got a bit of a snub in score and maybe visual effects.
The biggest snubs of the year is Ben Affleck for director, and… I haven’t seen Bigelow’s yet, so I can’t tell yet. I think we might be ready for another edition of “Should Have Been Best Picture” hahaha
@amy, I think we’re TOTALLY ready for another edition of Should Have Been Best Picture. Let’s make it happen!
Anyway, I’m not at all surprised that Lincoln is getting so much love during awards season. It’s an extremely weak film but it caters to everything that older critics love. No distinct style, messy script, lack of focus on the issue at hand. I didn’t even care for the performances that much. Sassy Sally Field made it a little bearable in her totally unnecessary scenes though.
I’m glad we’re on the same page about Amour though. It’s so…cold and distant. What could and should have been Haneke’s most emotionally rich and compelling narrative ended up feeling clinical as hell, and I hated that.
I think Cloud Atlas was snubbed every which way. I friggin’ loved it. Visual effects, score, and make-up are definitely the three it got screwed on though.
“Snubbed: Leonardo DiCaprio for Django Unchained & Matthew McConaughey for Magic Mike”
Javier Bardem (Skyfall) is a bigger snub than both of these IMO.
@Rodrigo, My reasoning for thinking both of these men were snubbed is because they are completely outside of their comfort zone. We’ve already seen Bardem as a villain, and regardless of my love for the role, it pales in comparison to his No Country For Old Men villain. McConaughey is seedy as hell in Magic Mike and I dig that – it’s a stark contrast to his Charming Handsome RomCom Man type, just like Killer Joe was an even greater dark role. Same with DiCaprio – it’s a role completely out of his comfort zone and against his gentlemanish type.
@Juan Barquin, I see your point, man. I did like McConaughey in Magic Mike and Bernie. Haven’t seen Paperboy and Killer Joe yet, but 2012 seems like a good year for him. DiCaprio was great as Candie, but IMO Django Unchained suffered heavily in its third act (everything was going well until you know…) and that made me sad as a Tarantino fan. I know this shouldn’t affect my thoughts on DiCaprio’s performance, but it works against him somehow. :S
While Silva isn’t as masterful/deadly as Anton Chigurh, I still thought he was almost on the same level as AC, Joker-Ledger and Hans Landa. Silva was the kind of character I would have loved to see more of, but what Skyfall showed suffices.
@Juan Barquin, Oh, and the “against type” factor would have helped McConaughey a lot if Magic Mike could have gave him a few more minutes of screentime. I didn’t hated or loved the film, but MM can be easily ignored as a mere “stripper film” despite its content.