Juan’s Two Cents – The 85th Academy Award Nominees Edition

Original Screenplay

  • Likely Winner: Mark Boal for Zero Dark Thirty
  • Most Deserving: Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola for Moonrise Kingdom
  • Snubbed: Paul Thomas Anderson for The Master
  • Go Away: Everything that isn’t Django Unchained or Moonrise Kingdom. Like I said earlier, Amour is cold and distant, and the others are nothing that special.

Adapted Screenplay

  • Likely Winner: Tony Kushner for Lincoln
  • Most Deserving: Chris Terrio for Argo
  • Snubbed: Tracy Letts for Killer Joe & Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski and Tom Tykwer for Cloud Atlas
  • Biggest “Fuck You”: Ben Zeitlin & Lucy Alibar for Beasts of the Southern Wild. It’s a bunch of scenes loosely tied together that relies on a child’s narration to keep it moving. And that doesn’t work in my book. But everyone and their mothers are masturbating over it, so I guess I’m in the minority here. I’d also like to throw in a big fat fuck you to Kushner’s Lincoln because I’ve never seen a movie try to shoehorn in its lead actor as much as this one did considering the entire plot revolved around a bunch of white guys yelling at each other with an occasional guest spot from Lincoln.

Animated Feature

  • Likely Winner: Frankenweenie [1]
  • Most Deserving: This is one of the few times that I have three films that I think are totally worthwhile candidates at winning. Frankenweenie, Paranorman [1],and Wreck-It Ralph [2] are all great animated films. Each of them deserve their nomination and I’d be happy with a win from any.
  • Huh???: Brave? [1] I mean, I know why it’s here. It’s fucking Pixar. Does that mean it’s a great animated film? Nah. Of the short list, Le Tableau [2] alone could serve as a better replacement. I never saw The Pirates, so I won’t bother talking about that one.

Foreign Language Film

  • Likely Winner: Amour
  • Most Deserving: I haven’t seen a single one of these aside from Amour, so I’m unprepared, but I’m going to go ahead and go with A Royal Affair because of Mads Mikkelsen.
  • Breaks My Heart: France didn’t submit Holy Motors [1] instead of the boring, make dumb people feel-good Intouchables.


  • Likely Winner: Janusz Kaminski for Lincoln OR Claudio Miranda for Life of Pi
  • Most Deserving: You can’t make me pick. I love four out of five of these so much. There is no way I could pick between McGarvey, Richardson, Miranda, and Deakins.
  • Breaks My Fucking Heart: This will mark the tenth time Roger Deakins loses for cinematography (for Skyfall this year [1]). I’d also like to throw in a reminder that he didn’t even win the year he was nominated twice (Jesse James/No Country).
  • Biggest “Fuck You”: Janusz Kaminski. I guess you can talk about how he makes a movie all about white people talking at each other look sort of nice, but holy fuck, is the camera work moody as hell. And those profile shots. Please. We get it. He’s Lincoln. He’s on a fucking penny. Fuck off.


  • Likely Winner: The Gatekeepers
  • Most Deserving: The Invisible War
  • I haven’t seen four of these, so moving on I guess…

Next page for the final bunch!

Juan Barquin

Just yer average twenty-something college student with no time on his hands who ends up watching (and writing) too many movies and shows for his own good.

6 Responses

  1. amy says:

    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

    • Juan Barquin says:

      @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.

  2. Rodrigo says:

    “Snubbed: Leonardo DiCaprio for Django Unchained & Matthew McConaughey for Magic Mike”

    Javier Bardem (Skyfall) is a bigger snub than both of these IMO.

    • Juan Barquin says:

      @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.

      • Rodrigo says:

        @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.

      • Rodrigo says:

        @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.

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