Thursday, January 24, 2008

So, As an Afterthought, 80th Annual Academy Awards

It's probably had something to do with the shocking news about Heath Ledger - some had said that it was yet another marketing stint from Warner Bros. Maybe, just maybe, when the red-carpet for the premiere of The Dark Knight rolled, we see him walking casually down the aisle, smiling wildly, and said, "Why so serious?". Don't see it happen though, that was a very bold marketing stint, if it had. In other word, i believed that the death clause was genuine, and Mr.Ledger would stay dead - that the 80th Annual Academy Awards nominations announcement went mostly un-noticed by me. But i'd like to think that with the fiasco that is Golden Globe, writer strike and all, AND chiefly, that personally, i thought that the year 2007 is a very good year in film - again, this is probably due to my even easier access of late to films that found me less and less depended on the schedule of our local cineplexes (if there's anything that goes progressively worse over the year is our local cineplexes' screening selections. That, and a great slew of terrible Indonesian films that had its theme shifted from 'teenage-horror' to 'adolescence-sex-comedy'. Yup, we're back in 1970's where Warkop DKI ruled our cinema. So much for progress. Anyway, that was another post to this self-important blog later. Geez, i made a footnote INSIDE a footnote!), and more and more eye-ing the film festivals and DVD releases - that i could, although incorrectly, put the word "i could put a blindfold and pick any film released in 2007, and loved it" into a good use. And due to that, i'd like to think that subconsciously, i had blatantly ignored the Awards thingies, because i KNOW what i liked, had a pretty firm and justified opinion on that, and thus, when some Academy shoved names and titles that THEY thought was best in 2007, i found myself comfortable and unshaken with my choices. But still, Awards still had its certain fun. For one, i could mock and poke (which exactly what i'm about going to do) their selection.

Anyway, the nominees for the 2007 80th Annual Academy Awards is up (read for it yourself somewhere, perhaps at

No Country for Old Men (still my number one film in 2007) and There Will Be Blood (when was the DVD is going to be released, anyway?) leads the nominations, taking eight nods each including Best Picture and Best Director. My favorite man, Daniel Day-Lewis also taking a nod for Best Actor (about time he wins one, if you asked me). I had a notable brief argument with a friend in Best Actor category. Immediately after i saw American Gangster last Saturday, a friend of mine said that Denzel Washington should win, or at least, nominated for Best Actor. I was immediately disagreed. I said, no, way! Denzel is just being Denzel in American Gangster. He just did what he did best, and if you asked me, nothing special. Granted, Denzel Washington is a better than average actor, thus, his being average acting would 'wows' many casual audience. But see more of his films, understands them, and you'd spot the difference. So, based on that fact, i was sceptical that Denzel Washington would get his noms via American Gangster. And do you know the exhilarating feeling of being right? Do you enjoy it? I know i enjoyed it, and i just love being right.

Ellen Page got nominated for Best Actress. As much as i loved her, well, actually because i loved her, i don't want her to win. The film in which she got her nods from was also nominated for a Best Picture, and has been 'a little film that has become everyone's little darling' not unlike that of the 2006's Little Miss Sunshine. However, despite its luke-warm and sweet character, i was rather disappointed with the overall of the film's direction, and i was failed to see something special from Ellen Page. Oh, she could act, all right, better than average, but as Juno MacGuff she was straight like an arrow from start to finish. Unlike in Hard Candy, where in my opinion, she was totally overlooked, there's no recognizable gritted grip that made me emotionally involved to the character not merely bemused.

George Clooney enjoyed another year of nominations as his latest film (not one he is directing, though, which as you have guessed correctly, gave ABSOLUTELY NO SIGN WHATSOEVER of when was it's going to made an appearance), Michael Clayton had a nod for Best Picture and another nod for Best Actor to himself.

Further, adding insult to injury, the exclusion of Lust, Caution and 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days (which by the way, won the Grand Jury prize at the Cannes. THE Cannes Film Festival) two of my most favorite film in the year 2007 from the Best Film in Foreign Language nomination, further discredited Academy in my eyes worse than ever.

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