Thursday, February 04, 2010

Before the ballot battle begins

It's that time of the year again. Oscar nominations are out, and I am as excited about them as I am enthused about this season's American Idol-- which is to say, not in the slightest. I don't know what it is about 2010, but so far I am not mustering up enough interest in my usual sources of entertainment. I watched the pilot episode of Glee, and was underwhelmed (it's like High School Musical: The Series) so I haven't continued watching the rest of the series; I read through half of Zadie Smith's The Autograph Man, but haven't picked it up again in over a month; and as I mentioned, I haven't been keeping tabs on AI like I did in previous years (I miss Paula Abdul, that lovable loopy lush). And now when I should start prepping for our annual siblings' Oscar betting pool, I feel more inclined to not bother and just let either Hanks or Bens win it this year (well ok, Hanks can win, but not Bens).

I HAVE seen a couple of the 10 nominees for Best Picture though (yes, they increased the number of Best Pic noms to 10 again, crazy Academy): Inglourious Basterds, Up, District 9, The Blind Side, and of course, Avatar. I have The Hurt Locker saved in my netbook (thanks to my favorite soldier), so I'll probably watch that before they roll out the red carpet at the Kodak Theater. I do want to see An Education and Up in the Air, because I adore Peter Sarsgaard and George Clooney. But I'm lukewarm about A Serious Man (never been a big fan of the Coen brothers' films) and Precious: Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire (what the heck kind of title is that anyway?). I don't think the latter 2 movies stand a serious chance of winning anyhow.

The only other films nominated for other awards I'd like to watch prior to Oscar night are Invictus (to see my darling Matt Damon show Leo DiCaprio how to pull off a South African accent), A Single Man (Colin Firth playing a gay man: 'nuff said), and Nine (my girl crushes Nicole Kidman and Penelope Cruz in a musical? I'm there!). Crazy Heart... not too crazy about going to see it, although Jeff Bridges seems a shoo-in for Best Actor this year. Ditto Sandra Bullock for Best Actress, whose understated, uncharacteristic performance in The Blind Side seems to have made an impression with a lot of people. Personally, I thought she was very good in the movie, but very good for Sandra Bullock only, and not necessarily worthy of an Oscar. She's got a long ways to go before she reaches Meryl Streep or Helen Mirren caliber.

I still have a couple of weeks to prepare myself to fill up my Oscar ballot, but I'm not optimistic about my chances this year, if only because I'm having a hard time getting into the spirit of things (and because my brother has the dumbest luck when it comes to random guessing). In any case, I hope to catch some of the movies I wish to see, and I hope they prove to be quality films like last year's outstanding batch of nominees.


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