I am notoriously bad at winning Oscar pools. If I wanted to place the blame elsewhere I’d say it’s because I have bad luck. If I’m honest, it’s because I’m not strategic. I tend to vote based on my actual opinions rather than channel the collective feelings of the Academy’s 6,000 plus members. But call Madame Cleo, this year I’m tuning into the brain of the Academy and embracing their logic.
Winner: The King's Speech
Why: This category always gives me grief. Not only do the producers make you hang on to the very end of the telecast for the winner, but since the Academy upped the category to ten it’s beginning to feel like the Stanley Cup playoffs: who doesn’t make it in? Where was I going with this…Oh yes, The King’s Speech. Everyone saw it. It’s the feel good film from what was a difficult year. The King’s Speech ousted The Social Network at the DGAs and SAGs and will take home the big prize on the 27th.
Winner: David Fincher
Why: By giving Best Picture to The King’s Speech the Academy will need to acknowledge they are hip and with it: enter a movie about young people doing things on the interwebz. Fincher FTW here, plus he is overdue for his golden moment. I’d like to see him channel Sally Field and give new meaning to: "You like me, you really like me!"
Winner: Colin Firth
Why: Firth has cleaned up at the major awards leading up to the Oscars. The dark horse is Jesse Eisenberg, but I think the Academy realized just how painful that acceptance speech would be and voted with Mr. Darcy.
Winner: Natalie Portman
Why: By Oscar standards Portman did what merits an automatic win for female actresses: she underwent a harsh physical transformation. This puts her in the company of previous winners such as Julia Roberts, Charlize Theron and Halle Berry. Portman’s bone-busting performance in Black Swan will earn her the win. Perfection, at last.
Best Supporting Actor
Winner: Christian Bale
Best Supporting Actress
Why: This is the category that gave me the most trouble. I might be slipping back into the voting with my gut since Melissa Leo does have a very strong shot here. It could be that those ads put me off, but an Oscar going to a wee person is overdue. Here’s to fast talking Hailee and her braids.
Best Foreign Language Film
Winner: In a Better World
Why: This may be the most interesting category for the 83rd Academy Awards. Not only is there a Canadian film (Incendies) but also the greatest surprise nomination: Dogtooth. I’d like to see the latter take home the statue, but that’s unlikely as both it and Incendies are a tad too grim for Oscar’s palate with all that (quasi spoiler alter) incest. Biutiful is already covered with Jarvier Bardem's nom and Outside the Law has a less universal appeal than In a Better World. Thus, congrats will go to the Danes.Don't forget to watch the 83rd Annual Academy Awards this Sunday, February 27th at 8pm EST on ABC (CTV in the Great White North).
EDIT: February 27th, 2011
Best Picture: The King's Speech
Best Director: Tom Hooper (The King's Speech)
Best Actor: Colin Firth (The King's Speech)
Best Actress: Natalie Portman (Black Swan)
Best Supporting Actor: Christian Bale (The Fighter)
Best Supporting Actress: Melissa Leo (The Fighter)
Best Foreign Language Film: In a Better World (Denmark)
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