Oscar Predictions 2011

UPDATE : The Oscar Nominations have been announced HERE !


Who should win: "Inception"
Commentary: I hope “Inception” will be acknowledged for what it is : the best movie made in 2010. But if the Academy goes by their unwritten (and rarely broken) rule that the message and theme of the film are just as important as its production, then the battle will be between “The Social Network” and “The King’s Speech”, with “The Social Network” as the most likely winner. Let’s hope it won’t come to that.


- James Franco for “127 Hours”
- Jeff Bridges for “True Grit”
- Colin Firth for “The King's Speech”
- Jesse Eisenberg for “The Social Network'

Who should win: Colin Firth
Commentary: Javier Bardem may have a shot at a nomination for his role in "Biutiful".


- Natalie Portman for “Black Swan”
- Annette Bening for “The Kids Are All Right”
- Jennifer Lawrence for “Winter's Bone”

Who should win: Natalie Portman
Commentary: Other possible contenders are Nicole Kidman for “Rabbit Hole” and Noomi Rapace for 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo'


- Andrew Garfield for “The Social Network"
- Geoffrey Rush for “The King's Speech'”
- Christian Bale for “The Fighter”
- Mark Ruffalo for "The Kids Are All Right”

Who should win: Christian Bale
Commentary: Other possible contenders are John Hawkes for “Winter’s Bone” and Matt Daemon for “True Grit”


- Melissa Leo for 'The Fighter'
- Helena Bonham Carter for 'The King's Speech'
- Hailee Steinfeld for “True Grit”

Who should win: Hailee Steinfeld
Commentary: Other possible contenders are Keira Knightley for “Never Let Me Go”, Amy Adams for “The Fighter” and Barbara Hershey for "Black Swan"


- Danny Boyle for "127 Hours"
- David Fincher for "The Social Network"
- Tom Hooper for "The King’s Speech"
- Joel and Ethan Coen for "True Grit"
- Darren Aronofsky for "Black Swan"
- Christopher Nolan for "Inception"

Who should win: David Fincher for "The Social Network" 
Commentary: I have no idea which one of these six can be left out.


- Christopher Nolan for "Inception"
- Lisa Cholodenko and Stuart Blumberg for 
              "The Kids Are All Right"
- David Seidler for "The King's Speech"

Who should win: Christopher Nolan for "Inception"
Commentary: There are two films I haven’t seen yet that might end up in here because both Mike Leigh and Sofia Coppola are brilliant screenwriters: “Another Year” (Leigh) and “Somewhere” (Coppola)


- The Coen Brothers for “True Grit”
- Debra Granik and Anne Rosellini for “Winter's Bone”
- Alex Garland for “Never Let Me Go”
- Danny Boyle and Simon Beaufoy for “127 Hours”
- Aaron Sorkin for “The Social Network”

Who should win: Aaron Sorkin for “The Social Network”
Commentary : As much as I would love to see “Never Let Me Go” or an independent film like “Winter’s Bone” win something, what Fincher did cannot be denied. He’ll get the Oscar.

For BEST DOCUMENTARIES I haven’t seen that many last year so I have just one name: "Waiting for Superman", which is basically about the failure of the American education system. 

And finally for BEST ANIMATED FEATURE I have again only one name and in this case the other nominees won’t even matter because “Toy Story 3” will win and nothing is gonna change that.

Feel free to share opinions, impressions, suggestions  and waffles. 

True Grit [8.8/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre : Adventure, Drama, Western
Directors : Ethan & Joel Coen
Writer : Ethan & Joel Coen (screenplay), Charles Portis (novel)
With: Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Hailee Steinfeld

There is nothing in the world of cinema that excites me more  than a good old fashioned western. Sadly, they’ve made only a handful of those in the last two decades. So I was waiting for this movie with more anticipation than a kid on Christmas Eve, though few children are as fond of Santa as I am of Ethan and Joel Coen – who I can safely say are among the best filmmakers of our time. “No Country for Old Men” was by far my favorite film of 2007 and apparently that “modern western” vibe to it was only training for the real thing, as the Coen brothers delivered not only a top five (at least) movie of this year, but also a true western – the best in I don’t even want to count how many years. 

For those who’ve seen the original True Grit from 1969 and have been dreading the remake, you can rest assured. This is one rare and fine example how you can take an amazing, wonderful film and remake it into an even better one. You heard me, as hard to believe as it may be. 

The King's Speech [8.4/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre :   Drama, History
Director : Tom Hooper
Writer : David Seidler
With:    Colin Firth, Geoffrey Rush, Helena Bonham Carter

Most of us take so many things for granted. Being able to speak properly is one of those things and if anyone hasn’t realized this simple fact yet, they most certainly will after watching “The King’s Speech”. How agonizing it must be to stumble upon your words again and again, having people waiting for you, either amused or with impatience, as you keep stuttering trying to enunciate a simple sentence. Having just a normal dialogue with a friend must be hard enough, but what if you are forced to speak to a nation? And how about several nations, in a LIVE radio transmission broadcasted in UK and the rest of Europe, North America, Africa and Asia all at once as you speak? Just knowing that all these people will be listening to you on air is enough to cause you anxiety, but what if on top of that you have a severe speech impediment that compels you to spasmodically repeat sounds as you struggle to get the words out? How dreadful!

The Fighter [8.2/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre :  Biography, Drama, Sport
Director : David O. Russell
Writers : Scott Silver, Paul Tamasy, Eric Johnson, Keith Dorrington
With:   Mark Wahlberg, Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Melissa Leo

This is a film that succeeds in spite of its lead, rather than because of it. “The Fighter” should be all about the boxer Micky Ward (played by Mark Wahlberg), but instead it is about his crack-head brother, his wannabe-manager mother, his seven sisters from Hell and his hot-tempered girlfriend. I don’t know if this is entirely Mark Wahlberg’s fault, or if this is how David O. Russell envisioned Micky Ward’s character - either way, it’s not working. It feels as if anyone could have been the lead here. “Oh look, it’s our neighbor from across the street, playing in that movie with all these real actors”. I’m sorry Wahlberg, it is what it is.

The Kids Are All Right [7.6/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre : Comedy, Drama
Director : Lisa Cholodenko
Writers : Lisa Cholodenko, Stuart Blumberg
With:  Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, Mark Ruffalo, Mia Wasikowska, Josh Hutcherson

Though “The Kids are Alright” is centered around an unusual and hard-to-believe plot with a funny twist to it, the film is not about the plot: it is about its characters. 

Nic and Jules are a married lesbian couple who watches gay male porn for turn-ons. They have two teen-aged children who share the same father because both women were artificially inseminated using the same donor. 

127 Hours [8.6/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre :    Adventure, Biography, Drama
Director : Danny Boyle
Writers : Danny Boyle, Simon Beaufoy (screenplay), Aron Ralston (autobiography)
With:  James Franco

In 2003 Aron Ralston went rock-climbing through Utah canyon country and didn’t tell anybody where he was going - a decision he soon came to regret after he fell down a canyon and found himself with one arm pinned between an 800 pounds boulder and the canyon wall. He remained trapped like that for over 5 days, and this movie tells his real story.

“127 Hours” is very much a one man show. All the other characters appear for the briefest amounts of time and are only there to tell us more things about Aron. The film starts with him getting ready for one of his trips. He is willing and excited.

Black Swan [8.5/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre : Drama, Thriller
Director : Darren Aronofsky
Writers : Mark Heyman, Andres Heinz, John McLaughlin (screenplay), Andres Heinz (story)
With:  Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, Mila Kunis

This is a jaw-dropping beautiful film, which you will probably include either in your “masterpiece list” or in your “bore list”, depending on what type of movie-person you are. Thanks to "Black Swan", Natalie Portman delivers one of the best (if not the best) performances of the year as Nina Sayers, a perfectionist ballerina and her descent into madness after seeing her dream come true. 

The movie starts with a nightmare and continues on an accelerating nightmare-ish route after Nina is selected as the lead ballerina in a modernist production of Tchaikovsky's classical "Swan Lake". The original ballet tells the story of Princess Odette who is turned into a swan by an evil sorcerer. 

Winter's Bone [7.8/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre :   Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Director : Debra Granikr
Writers : Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini (screenplay), Daniel Woodrell (novel)
With:  Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes

Ree Dolly is 17 years old. She lives with her mother, sister and brother in a small house in the rural Missouri Ozarks near the Arkansas border. Her father is nowhere to be found. Her mother is mentally ill.  Her twelve-year old brother Sonny and six-year old sister Ashlee have no one to count on but her. They live in poverty and the winter is hard. We watch young Ree cooking, chopping wood, teaching her siblings some math, taking her mother for walks and talking to her without knowing how much (if anything) the woman can even understand. She tries her best to take care of her family, without complaining and without taking brakes.

The Social Network [8.7/10]

Year : 2010 | Genre :  Biography, Drama, History
Director : David Fincher |  Writers : Aaron Sorkin (screenplay), Ben Mezrich (book)
With: Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, Justin Timberlake

If you are familiar with David Fincher you've probably been excited about this film long before its release. Fincher's achievements in directing movies like “Se7en", "Fight Club”, “Zodiac” or “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”, turned "The Social Network" into one of the most anticipated films of 2010. Being a Fincher fan myself, I went to the cinema with very high expectations, even though the idea of the movie confused me. I am pleased to report that my expectations were greatly exceeded. In fact, I would say that this is one of his best works to date. 

Trick 'r Treat [7.4/10]

Year : 2007 | Genre : Horror, Thriller
Director : Michael Dougherty | Writer : Michael Dougherty
With: Anna Paquin, Brian Cox, Dylan Baker

Since Halloween is right around the corner, I figured it would be most appropriate if I reviewed a Halloween-themed horror movie, so here it is : one of the most anticipated horror films of 2007, “Trick 'r Treat”, starring Anna Paquin (Sookie from “True Blood”), Brian Cox and Dylan Baker.

But even if every horror fan was probably having wet dreams waiting for this film to come out, many hated it. And for the wrong reasons.
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