Well, given that the DGA, Critics Choice, and Golden Globes have all given their awards to Ben Affleck, I can assume that he will gladly walk away with.. what? He’s not nominated? Well, okay then.
Our first nominee is Micheal Haneke for Amour. I really don’t think I was the intended audience for this film, finding it dull and slow paced. But, clearly, a lot of other people enjoyed the film Amour definitely has foreign film in the bag, but can it win Best Picture or Director! I’m going to say no on that, because, much like animated films, foreign picks are relatively shunned away and locked into their own category. A win for Haneke would most likely cause spit takes all around the globe.
My favorite nominee of the bunch is Ang Lee for Life Of Pi. This is his third nomination. The other two are for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Brokeback Mountain, which he won for, even though the film did not take home the big prize. That is the last time we saw a split between Director and Picture, and we could see another one considering that Argo currently has top billing. On top of that, the directing is pure genius. It’s hard to convince people to spend millions of dollars on a movie with no major stars, but Lee did it and the result is beautiful.
However, don’t expect Lee to beat Steven Spielberg for Lincoln. This is Spielberg’s 7th nomination, and he already has two wins under his belt for Schindler’s List and Saving Private Ryan. The best picture race at the moment seems to be between Argo and Lincoln, and seeing as how only one of those films is nominated for directing, it seems only fitting that Spielberg take home his third Oscar. Granted, I don’t know how Spielberg’s third Oscar is more important than Christopher Nolan’s first, especially when you take into account that the film doesn’t have the familiar Spielberg whimsy. I have to wonder what this film has that War Horse didn’t have, but the people like it, and I think that Spielberg is the frontrunner.
Waiting in the corner is David O. Russell for Silver Linings Playbook. This is my first David O. Russell film, and it far succeeded my expectations. Previously nominated for The Fighter, Russell has the rare gift to simply make you feel like his movie is life, and the movie stands as the best R rated movie that I’ve seen yet. But don’t count on a win, as comedies rarely win Best Picture, and if this movie is going to make a splash, expect it to do so in a different category.
And last but certainly not least, Benh Zeitlin for Beasts Of The Southern Wild. While his nomination resulted in thousands of screaming protesters screaming “Wrong Ben!”, I was overjoyed to hear his name. For a first time director, Zeitlin packs a powerful punch and delivers one of the years greatest films. I don’t want to jinx anything, but I think Zeitlin may go on to become one of the greatest directors of all time. And yes people, I just said that.
Will Win: Steven Spielberg, Lincoln
Runner’s Up: Ang Lee, Life Of Pi
Should Win: Ang Lee, Life Of Pi