January 25, 2011

Oscar nominations announced, and we make our picks

The King's Speech leads with a total of 12 nominations.
This morning the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the nominees for the upcoming 83rd Academy Awards. There are a few snubs and surprises in the mix, but certainly none as The Social Network and The King's Speech vie for the top prize. The King's Speech is the leader of the pack with 12 nominations to its title. True Grit, snubbed by the Golden Globes, grabbed 10 nods. And, The Social Network took seven.

Of the surprises, Winter's Bone, which seemingly came out of nowhere (at least from a general audience point of view), took nods for both Best Picture and Best Actor (John Hawkes). A Sundance gem, Winter's Bone, upon its limited run through theaters, received nothing but praise (MRQE Metric: 82). Guest blogger Matthew Putman sums up the beauty of this film, which you can read here. Javier Bardem's nod for Biutiful is also a surprise, and hopefully his nomination will get more and more people seeing this film.

From surprises to snubs, one of the biggest snubs is aimed at Christopher Nolan, who is not being recognized for his direction in Inception. A similar fate befell Nolan a few years back, when the Academy failed to recognize him for The Dark Knight. Nolan should be happy at the very least, with his nomination for Original Screenplay; plus the film itself is up for Best Picture. Inception picked up a total of eight nominations, also including Cinematography, Original Score, and Visual Effects.

Also snubbed is Andrew Garfield. Many critics expected him to land a nod for supporting actor, against Jesse Eisenberg in The Social Network. Ryan Gosling was also expected to be nominated for Best Actor for his stand-out performance in Blue Valentine. Gosling's co-star--and on-screen wife--Michelle Williams is nominated. Also, where's Mark Walhberg for The Fighter?

Our predictions:

Best Actor: Colin Firth totally owns this; he's been winning awards left and right.

Best Supporting Actor: Strong performance by Christian Bale, but we're thinking Mark Ruffalo.

Best Actress: Natalie Portman performed her heart out, but Annette Bening will likely take it home.

Best Supporting Actress: Tough call, especially with the wild-card (Jacki Weaver for Animal Kingdom). We're going to go with Helena Bonham Carter, though it really is anyone's game. Amy Adams and Melissa Leo have an equal shot, with amazing performances in The Fighter and The Kids are All Right, respectively. Hailee Steinfeld has more work, and years ahead of her.

Best Director: Honestly, no Chris Nolan? David Fincher is a good bet, as The Social Network keeps landing more and more fans (yes, that's an intentional Facebook pun). But, that's not to say we're thinking film will land the top prize.

And, as for the big prize, we want to hear from you. Below are the nominees, along with their current MRQE Metric, comment below and let us know your pick for Best Picture!

Black Swan - 80
The Fighter - 75
Inception - 81
The Kids are All Right - 79
The King's Speech - 85
127 Hours - 82
The Social Network - 85
Toy Story 3 - 90
True Grit - 83
Winter's Bone - 82

Head over to MRQE for a complete run-down of all the nominees!

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