oscar run xxi: million dollar baby
oscar run 1976: king kong

oscar run: the summary

I haven't seen 'em all, so my picks here are in the YMMV category.

I saw all five Best Picture nominees. Finding Neverland is the only one that I believe truly doesn't belong. Of the rest, I'd choose Sideways or Ray. Most obvious absences: Before Sunset, Fahrenheit 9/11, and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

I saw four of the five Best Actor performances, missing Don Cheadle. How ironic that Cheadle has no chance of winning because another black actor is such a clear choice. Jamie Foxx would be my choice, too, since I don't think the other three I saw were worthy of a nomination.

I saw four of five Best Actress nods, missing Imelda Staunton. All of the ones I saw were terrific, and I'd hate to pick between them, but if forced, I'd probably go with Annette Bening. (Hats off as well to Julie Delpy, who didn't get a nomination.)

Once again, four of five for Best Supporting Actor (didn't see Clive Owen). Alan Alda's nomination is a joke, as is Jamie Foxx's, although in his case it's because he was the star of the movie and thus is in the wrong category. (I guess Alda's in the wrong category, too, but they didn't have a category for I'm-in-two-scenes-wasn't-MASH-a-great-show.) You can't go wrong with Foxx, Morgan Freeman, or Thomas Haden Church ... I guess I'd go for Church just because he's such an odd guy to show up amongst such great company.

I only saw two Best Supporting Actress jobs, but I can't imagine many performances better than Virginia Madsen's.

Saw four of five Best Directors, think all the ones I saw have flaws, think Michael Moore and/or Richard Linklater should be on the list. Oh, and Alfonso Cuarón, who made one of my favorite movies of recent years, Y tu mamá también, but may have done an even more amazing trick this year by directing the first good Harry Potter movie.

And then my ability to pick is hampered by a lack of seeing every film, or a lack of interest in the category. Saw six of the ten screenplay nominees, and would go with Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Sideways of those I saw.

And now I can go back to watching old movies.