Thoughts on the Oscar Nominations; Where are Kunis and Timberlake?

1/26/2011 Posted by Admin

Thoughts on the Oscar Nominations; Where are Kunis and Timberlake?

Awards News

By our guest blogger, Joe Oliveto

The official Oscar nominations were announced yesterday, and while there were few surprises to be found, as always, there are some insights to be made regarding the choices the Academy made.

The first issue that springs to my mind is the fact that although “127 Hours” was nominated for Best Picture, Danny Boyle was not nominated for Best Director. True, this is an award he won recently for “Slumdog Millionaire,” and I’ll be honest--although I found “127 Hours” to be perhaps the most entertaining and emotionally effective movie of the year, as far as Oscar fare goes, it didn’t get a tremendously positive reaction from the overall critical community. It certainly was well-reviewed, but not to the same degree that “The Social Network” and “The King’s Speech” were.

OK, fair enough. But the task of taking the story of a hiker trapped in a canyon for five days and turning that into entertainment represented a massive challenge, and Boyle pulled it off superbly. He deserves recognition.

As far as the Best Picture nominees go, there aren’t any major surprises, and most of us can agree that this year, the race is between “The Social Network” and “The King’s Speech,” anyway. There are several other fantastic films on that list, but it’s unlikely that any of them have a chance of winning. My money is on “The Social Network,” but that may simply be because I’m a dedicated Fincher fanatic.

As far as Best Original Screenplay goes, I’d like to see Christopher Nolan take home the prize. “Inception” may have occasionally suffered from some clumsy exposition, but overall, it was a brilliant script, the kind Hollywood needs to film more often.

Aaron Sorkin might as well already find a place for his Best Adapted Screenplay trophy.

Mila Kunis was passed over for “Black Swan,” which is a shame, but she probably wouldn’t have won anyway. Still, it would have been nice for the Academy to recognize that she’s actually a skilled actress. Oh well, she’ll hopefully have another shot.

As far as overlooked actors are concerned, it is a little disappointing to see that neither Justin Timberlake nor Andrew Garfield were recognized for their work in “The Social Network.” You could argue that Garfield didn’t belong among the nominees anyway—personally, I think his emotional breakdown when he confronts Mark should have scored him a nod, but hey, that’s just one man’s opinion.

But Timberlake, well he delivered the goods. And not just in a “oh, we didn’t know he could actually act” way. No, he did fantastic work in that movie--his absence is bizarre.

Other than that, there isn’t too much to complain about. It was a fairly predictable year, but with two movies equally capable of taking home the big prize, it should be an interesting night when the Oscars arrive.

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  1. Joel C. said...

    A lot of really good points here. I definitely agree about Boyle (and I would throw Christopher Nolan in that category as well), but I think it's a circumstance where the field is so tight that someone will inevitably be left out. Hard to complain, really, when you look at the nominees.

    And, you're right, it was terribly predictable -- and it will probably make for a boring show. Hopefully Franco will save it as a host.

    I do wish that "Tron: Legacy" had gotten a nomination for best visual effects. That one just doesn't make sense to me ... at all.

    But whatevs. The Academy will continue to do things that just don't seem to make sense. I mean, "Tron: Legacy" clearly wasn't up to par with "Iron Man 2" -- which just recycled the same visual effects used in the first film.

    But what do I know.

    Great analysis Joe.