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Tryin’ to Throw Your Arms Around the World: Oscars 2011

You know what? I’m not actually that ticked off with the Academy Awards this year. In fact, as I mentioned in discussing the nominees, I was quite happy with the candidates up for the award. Now, nearly a week after the ceremony, I must concede that I’m generally relatively happy with the way that the awards were divided up on the night. CinemaBlend summed up the ceremony as a “group hug” to movies released in a great year for cinema, and I find it hard to object to that succinct summary.

By all accounts, the hosting was a bit of a drag...

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The Hip, Cool Oscars…

I’m getting old.

That’s the only way to really explain it. The more I think about, the more irritated I get. There really isn’t too much commentary to be made on the awards handed out at the ceremony, it was the bland and safe option for just about every major category. I was more interested to see what elements of last year’s radical overhaul they kept and which ones they disposed of. Basically, my problem with the Oscars can be summed up with two questions: Who invited Taylor Lautner? And why is Kristen Stewart giving out an award?

Neil Patrick Harris gets a pass... because he's awesome!

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Has the Email Controversy Hurt The Hurt Locker’s Chances?

Well, balloting is official closed. The deadline has passed and, by the time you read this, counting will more than likely be under way. It’s been an interesting Oscar season, and – since this is my last post before the ceremony – I should probably make some sort of generic observation about the competition. In truth, the acting races seem to have been sewn up since before nominations were even announced, but it looks like there’s a genuine race on for the Best Picture Oscar. In the interest of objective journalism (okay, blogging), I should concede that I have a €10 bet with my brother on the race. He expects Avatar to win because (and I quote) “it looks awesome”. I was backing The Hurt Locker, but part of me wonders if the anti-Avatar fiasco means that I should just give him the tenner now and be done.

Chartier attempts to defuse the situation...

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Reaction to the Best Picture Oscar Nominations…

Well, it’s been a week since the nominations were announced. I think I’m as adjusted as I’ll ever be to this year’s crop of Oscar contenders. Am I happy? Relatively. Am I delighted? No. Am I as filled with disappointment and rage as I was last year? Not nearly. Does this mean we can judge the ten horse race a success? I’m not so sure. Let’s take a look at the good, the bad and the worse of this year’s nominations, snubs and just inexplicable nods. I’ll be taking a look at the acting nominations later in the week, because this post just ballooned. Rather fitting given the expansion of the category, no?

Let the speculating and analysis and moaning begin...

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Is an Inglourious Oscar on the Way? Or Just a Basterdly Disappointment?

As anyone who visits the site will know, Inglourious Basterds was my film of last year. I just dug it – the post-modern aspects of it, the juxtaposition of Tarantino’s style with the historic backdrop, the ending. And I’m more than delighted to think that Christophe Waltz will earn an Oscar statuette for his work, making it three years on the trot of amazing Supporting Actor turns. But will the film itself score one of the big nominations? Of that, I’m not quite so sure.

That's one way of convincing Academy members...

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Can an Indie be too popular for the Oscars?

We are well and truly in Oscar season, in case you didn’t pick up on the Toronto International Film Festival as the kick-off of events (in fairness, it’s been going on longer than that – Oscar season is like Christmas advertising, it gets earlier every year. It’s fun the way that (even at this stage) every minor bump in the road for any picture is seen as potentially the end of its run. I’m not an Oscar-ologist, so I will concede I’m outside my field of expertise. It’s stunning that the perceived snubbing of perceived Oscar-lock Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire (heck of a title, there) at the Gotham Awards. It’s got a lot of film critics and Oscar-watchers pondering if the mainstream support that stars like new Academy member Tyler Perry and Oscar-nominee Oprah Winfrey may have actually harmed it. Are AMPAS such snobs that a showing of support from Oprah can ground a film’s chances?

Cruising for a bruising at Oscar season?

Cruising for a bruising at Oscar season?

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More Thoughts on the Best Picture/Best Director Voting Divergence

I read an interesting article over at The LA Times which suggested that we may be able to spot how radically the new voting rules have changed the way that the Academy awards people and films.

Going for gold...

Going for gold...

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