--> Now! New and improved with post-ceremony comments.
So, the usual suspects again?
(Mirren/Whitaker/Hudson/Murphy/Scorsese, rinse, dry, repeat.) I'm sorry, I just don't care - at least the comedy/musical categories will provide some different names. Does anyone else sort of feel like the races feel more obligatory than exciting this year? Aside from Mirren and Scorsese, I just can't get on board with any of the frontrunners here. With practically every category sewn up, are there going to be any huge shockers here or at any of the upcoming ceremonies? I think not. I liked it much better when the critics and guilds made choices of their own rather than simply going along with the studio-produced hype and general trends. Or am I imagining that ever happened once upon a time? Oh well, drunk celebrities are always worth watching I guess.
* = correct prediction
Best Picture (Drama): The Departed (Babel may have more nominations, but see Cold Mountain for precedent - only 1 win out of 8 leading nods. I can't see the Marty flick *just* picking up the Directing prize.) Winner - Babel!
*Best Picture (Comedy/Musical): The singing 'girls (A Little Miss Sunshine upset is not out of the question, but I'd still place it far behind. Prada and Borat will get love elsewhere - in the lead comedy acting races specifically.)
*Best Actor (Drama): Forest Whitaker, The Last King of Scotland (Leo splits his vote, while O'Toole doesn't enjoy the "owed" status here that he does with the Academy - he's won three Globes. Easy, The King reigns again.)
*Best Actress (Drama): Helen Mirren, The Queen (The Queen reigns again, and she'll scoop up another Globe tomorrow night for Elizabeth I too.)
*Best Actor (Comedy/Musical): Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat: Cultural Learnings... (The only question is, will he be accepting the award in character?)
*Best Actress (Comedy/Musical): Meryl Streep, The Devil Wears Prada (That's all... I can't see anyone else here winning this, even Bening.)
*Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Eddie Murphy, Dreamgirls (A repeat for Jack is probable, but I'm thinking that Murphy adds the first of the big three prizes towards the golden boy.)
*Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Jennifer Murphy, Dreamgirls (Please let it be someone else, PLEASE.)
*Best Director: Marty Scorsese, The Departed (Perhaps the most unpredictable race of the night aside from Screenplay, since Marty just won not too long ago for Gangs of New York. Then again, Ang Lee was able to win two of these in close proximity, so I don't think that should be a problem for the overdue director. Iñárritu is a threat, while Eastwood - hopefully - cancels himself out.)
Best Screenplay: Guillermo Arriaga, Babel (Dead heat between Babel, The Queen and that roadtrip movie. Another toughie, but the former needs love somewhere, seeing that it's the leading film in terms of nominations, and this is the best place for it.) Winner - Peter Morgan, The Queen.
Best Song: Honestly, who cares? That Beyoncé stinker. Winner - Prince, Happy Feet
Best Original Score: Gustavo Santaolalla, Babel (I hope Clint Mansell upsets - hopefully voters will make the correct choice on their ballot.) Winner - Alexadre Desplat, The Painted Veil (Finally, some love!)
*Best Foreign Film: Letters from Iwo Jima (Aside from Apocalypto, any of these are a possibility. Crossing fingers for Volver, while Pan's Labyrinth is probably next in line after the Eastwood film.)
Best Animated Film: Happy Feet (The penguin love continues.) Winner - Cars
EDIT: Post-Ceremony Random, Stupid Thoughts
Score: 9/14 (64%)
- Overall, it got better as it went along, although the first half hour was excruciatingly painful. Only after the Best Actress (Comedy/Musical) gave her speech did things pick up for the better.
- Speaking of the devil, can the hysterical, sexy and very tipsy Meryl Streep ("Oh shut up, it's not that long") give every acceptance speech on behalf of all winners from now till the end of eternity, or at the very least this awards season? That's all.
- Would it kill William Monahan to smile at least once?
- How come all the actors and big names get to tediously ramble as much as they like while Peter Morgan (actually going somewhere interesting with his speech) has to wrap it up within mere seconds? And although the writing of The Queen has not held up for me with distance (that annoying stag!), I'm really glad that Morgan was able to beat out Little Miss Sunshine's Michael Arndt. Hopefully this situation will repeat at les Oscars. The fact that he wrote The Last King of Scotland too only sweetens the deal.
- Jamie Foxx, please, please shut the hell up.
- Someone needs to cast the brilliant Djimon Hounsou in as the lead in a film now, now, right now. No more of this native informant/noble savage nonsense.
- Did Felicity Huffman get some... "work" done? She looks about ten years younger. I thought she was Vera Farmiga for a second.
- What is with Will Ferrell's hair? Although I guess it doesn't look half bad.
- Why can't anyone pronounce "Alejandro González Iñárritu" correctly? It's not *that* difficult, trust me. It's not like you didn't have time to practice beforehand (I'm looking at you, Naomi and Spielbergo.)
- I love Marty's bushy eyebrows, and the fact that he acknowledged Infernal Affairs in his acceptance speech. It will be so sweet when he picks up the Academy's prize next month.
- Could Aaron Eckhart be any more good-looking?
- The love and praise lavished upon Bill Condon tonight has me convinced he's this year's Jim Mangold. I call snub, and a 3/5 Picture/Director lineup this year a la 2001.
- Least deserving winner of the night? Say hello to "Grey's Anatomy". Now say goodbye.
- Philip Seymour Hoffman, shave that moustache immediately! But bonus points for pronouncing Volver correctly.
- I freaking love Helen Mirren, but her speeches have left something to be desired tonight. Will this work against her with Oscar voters (who love sobs and mini-breakdowns)? Eh, perhaps not. They did give it to Jennifer Connelly that year after all, and she continually looked as excited as a teenage employee working the night shift at McDonald's while picking up her prizes through the precursors and on the big night itself.
- Forest Whitaker = this year's PSH. But as with Mirren... that speech. ARGH.
- Was Peter O'Toole even present tonight?
- Well, at least one prize tonight was a jaw-dropper (at least for me.) I really didn't think Babel would win a Best Picture nomination (too difficult, too dark), but I'm eating my words tonight.
Okay, that's it. Night!