It’s time, more than time actually, to recap, the 80th Annual Academy Awards:
Who won? Who should have won? Who wore what? Who cares?
Here is my scorecard of who won, and who should have won, in the major categories this year. The biggest injustice: “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”, on merit alone, should have swept the major categories. I know this is a hard sell, given the movie is in French and subtitled. The biggest disappointment? The continued degradation of the Hollywood movie – the lack of character arc, development and story. Being shocking and repulsive does not a great movie make.
With that said, here are the movies of 2007:
2007 Best Motion Picture of the Year: the Academy selected “No Country for Old Men” (blech). I chose “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”. No contest.
Performance by an actor in a leading role: Daniel Day Lewis (“There Will Be Blood”) was the choice of the Academy. My choice: Mathieu Amalric in “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”.
Performance by an actor in a supporting role: Javier Bardem (“No Country for Old Men”) won. My choice: Peter O’Toole in an animated performance in “Ratatouille”.
Performance by an actress in a leading role: the Academy chose Marion Cotillaid (“La Vie en Rose”). I can’t argue strongly with their choice, but my nod would have gone to Ellen Page for “Juno”
Performance by an actress in a supporting role: Tilda Swinton wins for her role in “Michael Clayton”. No complaints (but no strong feelings either) from me…
Best Animated Feature Film: the Academy and I enthusiastically agreed on “Ratatouille”
Achievement in Art Direction: “Sweeney Todd” wins; “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” was robbed.
Achievement in Cinematography: “There Will Be Blood” wins; “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” was robbed, again. Maybe the Academy isn’t ready to step up and properly reward a foreign language film?
Achievement in Costume Design: “Elizabeth: The Golden Age” was the obvious choice for the Academy. OK. Both “La Vie en Rose” and “Pirates of the Caribbean” were worthy of consideration.
Achievement in Directing: Joel Coen and Ethan Coen (“No Country for Old Men”) win. Without doubt, Julian Schnabel (“The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”) deserved the nod for a complete, outstanding movie.
Achievement in Film Editing: “The Bourne Ultimatum” is the uninspired choice of the Academy. My choice – you guessed – “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” for putting together a tough yet completely compelling voyage into Jean Do’s world.
Achievement in Makeup: “La Vie en Rose” wins. OK by me; “Pirates of the Caribbean” would have been a reasonable choice as well.
Original Score: in a vote from a parallel, weird universe, “Atonement” wins. Michael Giacchino (“Ratatouille”) must still be in shock.
Original Song: a home-run for the Academy for getting it so right with “Falling Slowly” from “Once”. Music and Lyric by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova.
Achievement in Sound Editing: “The Bourne Ultimatum” wins again. I am numb, but I guess I can live with that.
Achievement in Sound Mixing: this category makes “the Bourne Ultimatum” a, count ’em, three time Academy Award winner! Think about that for a minute. Does anyone (including myself) really understand what sound mixing means?
Achievement in Visual Effects: “The Golden Compass” wins a consolation prize. “Pirates of the Caribbean” was a no-brainer (which, perhaps, says something of the mental abilities of the members of the Academy?)
Adapted Screenplay: “No Country for Old Men” wins. You know my choice by now: “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”
Original Screenplay: “Juno” is chosen by both the Academy and me. Righteous.