Tuesday, January 20, 2009

**Final** Oscar Predictions Part 2: Screenplays, Animated etc.

Original Screenplay

Rachel Getting Married
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
The Wrestler

Alternate: The Visitor

If we're going on popularity of the films this seems like the five. Happy Go Lucky definitely has fans but isn't strong enough to predict above others that missed a WGA nomination.

Adapted Screenplay

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The Reader
Slumdog Millionaire

Alternate: Revolutionary Road

I'm really confident about these five since the weakest one of these, The Reader, seems to be trundling along nicely and its major competition, Revolutionary Road, doesn't. The Dark Knight could make it but I maybe think this is the only place where it can't shrug off comic book bias.

Animated Feature

Kung Fu Panda
Waltz With Bashir

Alternate: Bolt

Because of how people view animated films I think that Waltz With Bashir is in a bit of a shaky position. It does have an excellent critical showing though, so I'll leave it. Interestingly, I think if it isn't nominated here it's definitely going to win the Foreign award, whereas if it's nominated for both it could lose out altogether.

Foreign Film

The Baader-Meinhof Complex - Germany
The Class - France
Everlasting Moments - Sweden
Revanche - Austria
Waltz With Bashir - Israel

Alternate: Canada - Necessities of Life

I'd say Israel and Austria are strongest, and they're a fan of the Swedish director's work so that has to bode well for his entry. France have an unprecedented history with this category so I'm picking them, even though the film isn't very traditional. As for the final spot, The Baader Meinhof Complex is harsh -- both visually and thematically -- but it's largely good, and I haven't a clue about the others.

Documentary Feature

Blessed Is the Match: The Life and Death of Hannah Senesh
Man on Wire
Pray the Devil Back to Hell
Standard Operating Procedure
Trouble the Water

Alternate: Encounters at the End of the World

Well Man on Wire is the only lock, but Trouble the Water is about Hurricane Katrina, Standard Operating Procedure is about the mistreatment of suspected terrorists (appropriate since the new president wants to get rid of the Guantanamo Bay facility), Blessed is about the holocaust, and Pray the Devil is about Liberian peace with added feminist oomph. Major, major bait at play here.

The legendary Werner Herzog is my alternate but his doc is much less Oscary than most of the shortlist.

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