It was a massive night yesterday (and it almost landed me in my first-ever bar fight, which is a story unto itself), and today, after recuperating sufficiently (God bless Sunday brunch!) I’ll be joining the other 999,999,999 people watching the 80th annual Academy Awards. I’ve seen three of the five Best Picture nominees, and while I’m not pretending to be an expert I’d cast my vote for…Juno. Call my crazy: No Country for Old Men was astonishing while Michael Clayton was an engrossing, expert legal thriller–but as moviegoing experiences go, I didn’t enjoy either of them nearly as much as I enjoyed Juno. (In fact, I don’t think I’ve talked to anyone who didn’t love Juno equally as much.) No Country is the favourite for Best Picture–but a win for Juno isn’t completely out of the question, especially given the movie’s recent momentum. It’d be reminiscent of Shakespeare in Love winning Best Picture over Saving Private Ryan (which, contrary to popular opinion, wasn’t actually an upset since Shakespeare in Love was a vastly superior movie). As much as I’d love to see the Coen Brothers win a deserved Best Picture award, I’d be equally happy if Juno took the honours instead.
And having said that: my best picture of 2007 was easily Sweeney Todd. I’m baffled it wasn’t at least nominated for Best Picture, especially since it won the Golden Globe last month (which is saying nothing of Eddie Vedder not being nominated for Best Original Song…but I digress). Hearing Johnny Depp’s acceptance speech for Best Actor will make up for this slight.
UPDATE! No major surprises so far, unless Marion Cotillard winning Best Actress counts as an upset. Everyone’s favourite Moby clone, Michael Morrison, is currently doing a running diary of the Oscars for the Calgary Herald. Check it out!
UPDATE! And the evening’s biggest applause go to…Diablo Cody, who just won the Writing (Original Screenplay) award for Juno! She used to be a stripper! And while it probably means the movie won’t win Best Picture–this award has a “Pulp Fiction winning Best Original Screenplay before losing Best Picture to Forrest Gump” vibe–it’s a richly-deserved victory for Cody and another opportunity to ogle Ellen Page (sorry, couldn’t resist).
UPDATE! Your Best Actor is…not Johnny Depp. I give up. (To be fair, it’s hard to begrudge Daniel Day-Lewis his win–especially since he didn’t win for In the Name of the Father. On the other hand, he wasn’t the Demon Barber of Fleet Street.)
UPDATE! Best Directors: the Coen Brothers! They’re a couple weird-looking dudes…and having said that they’re neither as weird-looking nor as creepy as the Anton Chigurh character in No Country for Old Men, quite possibly the scariest villain in movie history. (Javier Bardem won Best Supporting Actor, by the way, to the surprise of absolutely no one.)
UPDATE! And the winner is…No Country for Old Men. Again, it’s no surprise: as much as Juno was the people’s champion (thanks, Bri Monster), No Country is an instant classic. That’s it for this year’s Oscars! I’ll be back with you early next week; until then, may Anton Chigurh haunt your dreams (I’m talking to you, Michael Morrison).