Monday, February 23, 2009

Failing Miserably with My Oscar Picks

Watched the 47-hour Oscar telecast last night. Why is it when it seems as though the show's producers are sincerely making attempts to trim the program's time, it seems even longer?

The good: Kate Winslet winning her first Oscar, Winslet's father loudly whistling so she could locate him in the crowd, Tina Fey & Steve Martin cracking up the place, Ben Stiller doing a spot-on Joaquin Phoenix and those cute-as-a-button Slumdog Millionaire kids who were collecting stars' autographs.

The so-so: Enough with the camera shots of Bragelina (particularly when Jennifer Aniston was on stage, steps away from them . . . just tacky), the too-long dance number (even though the HSM duo was very earnest) and, while I loved the individual speeches to the actor/actress nominees -- it was like giving each actor, most of whom would go home without a statue, a thoughtful, touching, individualized gift -- it tacked on too much time. The Academy Awards ended after midnight. My DVR stopped recording just when they were making the mini-speeches about the Best Actress nominees, so I was lucky to be able to switch over to live TV so as not to miss too much.

As for my own personal Oscar picks? Per usual, I stunk at predicting the winners, while my husband -- a casual pop culture observer who I force-march through countless films, particularly of the indie ilk -- thoroughly trounced me. I'd selected the top nine categories and out of those, I successfully identified four winners. The husband? He got seven of the winners.

Among those I accurately predicted: Best Picture, Slumdog Millionaire; Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight (though you'd have to have been a moron to bet against a Ledger win); Penelope Cruz, Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Best Animated Feature, WALL-E.

I know what you're thinking . . . how could such a self-professed Winslet fan have bet against her to win for The Reader? Well, I thought that perhaps the Academy voters didn't want to go with the "sure thing." Plus Winslet's on the cover of this week's Time Magazine (printed BEFORE the Oscars were aired) under the headline, "Best Actress." I thought it seemed TOO predictable. I decided to be wild and pick Meryl Streep for Best Actress for Doubt. My bad.

I also thought that while Sean Penn collected raves for his portrayal of Harvey Milk, that voters would go for the feel-good comeback story that is Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler. Wrong-o. As for picking the WALL-E Original Screenplay and The Reader Adapted Screenplay, incorrect on both counts.

Oh well. So I'm not very good at prognosticating when it comes to contests like this, which is why I always fare so poorly with my brackets during the NCAA men's basketball tournament. I tend to overthink all my choices, then allow my own personal biases to seep in. Bet you want me in your basketball pool, don't ya?

Image credit: Time Magazine.

1 comment:

The Husband said...

Trounced again by that casual-observing, pop-ignorant, know-it-all husband of yours...sorry.