Sunday, February 27, 2011


OSCAR 2011

Some OSCAR notes:

The show was consistently interesting, never boring, but never really exciting either. A few lines from Bob Hope remind us how lame other comedians have been since. But then, that was one of Bob Hope's best moments they showed.

The opening film sketch was fun. The opening Hot Body Humping sketch on Jimmy Kimmel's After-the-Oscars show delivered, to bookend the night.

James Franco added little to the night, but Anne Hathaway was good, though not especially funny. More than usual, the hosts introduced the presenters and not much else. They are not comedians.

The show got past the more boring awards quickly, and bunched the songs and Best Picture segments, which avoided some of the more draggy elements of many shows. Still, the show ran a little over the 11:30 supposed ending time. The kids from PS 122 were good. It's always a thrill for kids to get special opportunities like that. Sometime in the next 50 years we'll read about some celebrity who was inspired by their visit to the Oscars tonight to sing in the chorus.

Big winner, of course was THE KING'S SPEECH: Here's how it fared...

The King’s Speech
==>Best Picture
==>Best Director - Tom Hooper
==>Best Actor - Colin Firth
xBest Supporting Actor - Geoffrey Rush
xBest Supporting Actress - Helena Bonham Carter
xBest Cinematography - Danny Cohen
==>Best Original Screenplay - David Seidler
xBest Art Direction
xBest Costume Design
xBest Original Score
xBest Film Editing
xBest Sound Mixing

Black Swan won Best Actress for Natalie Portman. Jimmy Kimmel remarked that Black Swan was the only black nominated this year.

Both Black Swan and The King's Speech were at HIFF (The Hamptons International Film Festival) in 2010, along with James Franco and 127 Hours.

Two of the best lines were

"How to Train Your Dragon".."that's disgusting!"


Tom Hooper's "LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER!" - She discovered The King's Speech for him.

I thought both Natalie Portman's talk and Aaron Sorkin's talk were amazing: for how much they said, and how many people they remembered, and how fast they spoke, and what they said, too, in the pressure of the moment.

Natalie Portman, by the way, is not only an actress, she directed a short film that I liked a lot:

I enjoyed Kirk Douglas' spirit as a presenter. Scarlett and Justin made a good team; they were the best presenting couple.

Did Christian Bale forget his wife's name when he was thanking???

Inception was the big winner in the technical categories, with Sound Editing and Mixing, Cinematography & Visual Effects. Alice in Wonderland won for Art Design and Costumes. And The Social Network won for Editing. You'd expect a Best Directed picture to win in some technical categories, but Speech was shut out.

I do not really understand why Barney's Version was even nominated for Costumes, by the way.

The Inside Job was the winning documentary. It describes the way that financial institutions, as well as some academic consultants, were complicit in the financial meltdown. The director was astonished that three years after no one has been sent to jail for fraud.

In a Better World was the Foreign Film winner. It is not easy to see the foreign film winners. They seem to pass unnoticed in the theaters, and even in film festivals. The shorts are kind of invisible also, but more and more they will be able to be searched out online I think.

There was one clip from Winter's Bone which reminded me how terrific that cinematography really was. To appreciate it, watch the DVD, then watch the How-it-was-made feature on the DVD. You'll see the difference between how the place really looks, and how it looks in the film.

Finally, sadly, was the remembrance of those that have passed during this year. Sadly, I had met and known a number of the people mentioned. Some of those I knew were very nice, and nice to me. May they and their families rest in peace. I will remember them fondly and sadly.

Here is a list of nominees and winners:



Natalie Portman


The King’s Speech
==>Best Picture
==>Best Director - Tom Hooper
==>Best Actor - Colin Firth
xBest Supporting Actor - Geoffrey Rush
xBest Supporting Actress - Helena Bonham Carter
xBest Cinematography - Danny Cohen
==>Best Original Screenplay - David Seidler
xBest Art Direction
xBest Costume Design
xBest Original Score
xBest Film Editing
xBest Sound Mixing

True Grit
xBest Film
xBest Director - Joel and Ethan Coen
xBest Actor - Jeff Bridges
xBest Supporting Actress - Hailee Steinfeld
xBest Adapted Screenplay - Joel and Ethan Coen
xBest Cinematography - Roger Deakins
xBest Art Direction
xBest Costume Design
xBest Sound Editing
xBest Sound Mixing

The Social Network
xBest Film
xBest Director - David Fincher
xBest Actor - Jesse Eisenberg
==>Best Adapted Screenplay - Aaron Sorkin
xBest Cinematography - Jeff Cronenweth
==>Best Original Score
==>Best Film Editing
xBest Sound Mixing


Best Picture
The Social Network
==>The King’s Speech
Black Swan
True Grit
The Fighter
The Kids Are All Right
127 Hours
Toy Story 3
Winter’s Bone

Best Director
Darren Aronofsky, Black Swan
David O. Russell, The Fighter
==>Tom Hooper, The King's Speech
David Fincher, The Social Network
Joel and Ethan Coen, True Grit

Best Actor
Jeff Bridges, True Grit
Javier Bardem, Biutiful
Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network
==>Colin Firth, The King's Speech
James Franco, 127 Hours

Best Actress
Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
Nicole Kidman, Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence,
Winter's Bone

==>Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Michelle Williams, Blue Valentine

Best Supporting Actor
==>Christian Bale, The Fighter
John Hawkes, Winter's Bone
Jeremy Renner, The Town
Mark Ruffalo, The Kids Are All Right
Geoffrey Rush, The King's Speech

Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams, The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter, The King's Speech
==>Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit
Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom

Best Animated Feature Film
How to Train Your Dragon

==>Toy Story 3

Best Foreign Film
Mexico - Biutiful
Greece - Dogtooth
==>Denmark - In a Better World
Canada - Incendies
Algeria - Outside the law

Best Original Screenplay
Another Year

The Fighter
The Kids Are All Right
==>The King's Speech

Best Adapted Screenplay
127 Hours
==> Aaron Sorkin The Social Network
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter's Bone

Best Cinematography
Matthew Libatique - Black Swan
==> Wally Pfister - Inception
Danny Cohen - The King's Speech
Jeff Cronenweth - The Social Network
Roger Deakins - True Grit

Best Art Direction
==> Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I
The King's Speech
True Grit

Best Costume Design
==>Alice in Wonderland
I Am Love
The King's Speech

The Tempest
True Grit

Best Original Song
Coming Home
- Country Strong
I See the Light
- Tangled
If I Rise
- 127 Hours
==>We Belong Together
- Toy Story 3

Best Original Score
How to Train Your Dragon -
John Powell

Inception -
Hans Zimmer
The King's Speech - Alexandre Desplat
127 Hours - A.R. Rahman
==>The Social Network - Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

Best Documentary
Exit Through the Gift Shop
==>Inside Job
Waste Land

Best Film Editing
Black Swan
The Fighter
The King's Speech
127 Hours
==>The Social Network

Best Makeup
Barney's Version
The Way Back
==>The Wolfman

Best Sound Editing
Toy Story 3
TRON: Legacy
True Grit

Best Sound Mixing

The King's Speech
The Social Network
True Grit

Best Visual Effects
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1
Iron Man 2

Best Documentary (Short Subject)
Killing in the Name
Poster Girl
==>Strangers No More
Sun Comes Up
The Warriors of Qiugang

Best Visual Short Film (Animated)
Day & Night
The Gruffalo
Lets Pollute
==>The Lost Thing
Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary)

Best Short Film (Live Action)
The Confession
The Crush
==>God of Love
Na Wewe
Wish 143

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