Baseball Toaster Screen Jam
Oscar Nominations Open Chat
2008-01-22 07:13
by Jon Weisman

Here's the list. No big surprises on first glance. Atonement, Juno, There Will Be Blood and No Country for Old Men were all forgone conclusions for best picture nominations - the only doubt I had was whether the SAG-supported Into the Wild might beat Michael Clayton for the fifth spot. Similarly, the actor noms were by the book, with the mild but understandable surprise being that Laura Linney sneaked past Angelina Jolie for a chance to lose to either Marion Cotillard or Julie Christie.

One other mild upset on first glance: While many expected Juno to get loads of nominations, few saw director Jason Reitman actually getting credit. But it was nice to see that he did. I still wonder if the dialogue in the first part of that movie was intentionally meant to be as annoying as it was - as much as I liked it at the end.

More to come later, time permitting.

2008-01-22 08:47:21
1.   Bob Timmermann
Jet lag ensured that I was awake to see the announcement live.

Wow, that was not as good as sleeping.

Laura Linney got the acting nomination because of my spotting her at LAX before I left.

2008-01-22 08:54:13
2.   Kevin Lewis
I saw Juno this weekend, and I loved it. I agreed initially about the dialogue at the beginning. Actually, I thought to myself, "is this just going to be another teen quote movie?" But, I think the dialogue at the beginning did a great job highlighting the naivety of Juno and prepared her for the maturity process that took place.

I also finished season two of Battlestar Galactica. How can they not release season 3 before season 4 starts? I need to catch up.

Oh, and I started Firefly. Great show. I watched a lot of tv this weekend.

2008-01-22 10:34:11
3.   ibleedbloo
What I am really looking forward to seeing is if in the "Original Song" category, do Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz have a better chance of winning seeing how they are nominated in the category 3 times, or do they have a better chance getting their vote split and missing out. For the sake of full disclosure, I have seen zero of the 3 movies which songs have been nominated.

The drama mounts.

2008-01-22 11:14:26
4.   Kevin Lewis

Are you a Michigan fan?

2008-01-22 11:24:32
5.   Jon Weisman
3 - Falling Slowly should win and very well could win. I think there's a clearcut favorite from the Enchated songs that might take the prize, but Falling Slowly is my pick.

Eddie Vedder's shutout with Into the Wild was disheartening.

2008-01-22 12:07:15
6.   Kevin Lewis

Vedder being shutout seems strange.

I am going to be in Santa Barbara during the International Film Festival. Does anyone have any picks that are "must sees"?

2008-01-22 13:17:35
7.   Eric Enders
I am so, so ticked off at the royal screwing Into the Wild received. OK, maybe best picture and director noms were a little much to ask, but I figured at least Hirsch would get nominated for Best Actor. And then, completely shockingly, it gets shut out in two categories that it should have dominated -- song and adapted screenplay.

Everytime I think I have the Oscars figured out, it turns out I don't. Those last two omissions really threw me for a loop.

2008-01-22 13:22:20
8.   Eric Enders
6 I'd take a look at John Sayles' latest, "Honeydripper," if they're showing it. He showed it at the Binational Film Festival which I went to last week and I thought it was one of his better recent efforts.
2008-01-22 13:48:00
9.   Benaiah
I am going to call "Atonement" as the "English Patient"/"Titanic" slick prestige winner over the vastly superior "No Country" and "There Will be Blood". The Academy rarely rewards the best movies of the year, but still in a year with this many amazing movies 3/5 of the Oscar movies range from sort of decent ("Michael Clayton", "Atonement") to downright bad ("Juno").

"Juno"?!? How can Jason Reitman get a best direction nod for that? A talky "Napoleon Dynamite" meets "Garden State" in the third best pregnancy movie of the year (don't get me started on the foreign language selections). I watched it the entire time thinking: "Wow, you can definitely tell that a first time screenwriter wrote this." The dialogue is painfully overwritten ("That is one doodle that can't be undid, home skillet"), the situations are overly ornate and/or preachy (the mom going off on the ultrasound tech), the only character with any development seems like a thinly veiled stand in for the screenwriter herself, while everyone else talks exactly like her and there is zero plot development as the movie swings towards a completely predictable ending (Pauly Bleeker just sits around like a milktoast waiting for Juno to like him and then its over). Its the sort of movie that talks about punk and grunge but then has a soundtrack entirely of twee indie. It was disposable fare for the Myspace generation that somehow Roger Ebert and Andrew Sarris decided was the best movie of the year. Obviously it isn't going to win best picture, but it shouldn't be in the conversation.

2008-01-22 13:57:45
10.   Jon Weisman
9 - I doubt Atonement is going to win for picture, considering that it didn't get nominated for director or lead acting. It doesn't have support from two big branches of the Academy.

I think your criticism of Juno is too harsh - the overwritten dialog tapers as the film goes on (I still feel this is intentional), and I don't know how you can say there is zero plot development. The character development is focused mostly on Juno, but it's considerable. I agree that it's flawed, but I think you're too hard on it.

The comment that Juno = Diablo Cody not only is beside the point, it seems off the mark. Little in Diablo Cody's life relates to the plot of this movie. And so what if it did?

As far as winning goes, I feel it's a race between No Country and TWBB. If there's an upset candidate here, it's Michael Clayton.

2008-01-22 13:58:11
11.   Jon Weisman
My biggest rooting interest right now is for Julie Christie.
2008-01-22 14:58:53
12.   Eric Enders
Mine is for Ellen Page.

Death match!

2008-01-22 14:59:24
13.   Bob Timmermann
I really hope that Julie Christie wins. I thought that "Away From Her" would be too painful to watch, but it wasn't.

I don't think her competitors have much of a shot. I don't think Laura Linney will win anything until she plays a prostitute.

2008-01-22 14:59:34
14.   bigcpa
Hello, I'm a first time Screen Jam poster. Your discussion of entertainment is intriguing to me.

As a Pearl Jam devotee I am thoroughly disgusted with the Vedder snub. I'm still stewing from the 2004 show when PJ's song from BIG FISH got beat out by TWO songs from TRIPLETS OF BELLEVILLE which about 8 people saw. To lose out to 3 songs from one movie- which was no Dreamgirls anyway- salt in the wound.

2008-01-22 15:09:27
15.   Bob Timmermann
In 2004, only one song from "The Triplets of Belleville" was nominated. There were two songs from "Cold Mountain", one from "A Mighty Wind" and one from "The Lord of the Rings."

And I saw "The Triplets of Belleville" and I loved it and I own the soundtrack and I felt that it was easily the best song of the five nominated.

However, Annie Lennox won for "Lord of the Rings" and people probably liked that song because they knew once they heard it, the film was over and they could finally go to the bathroom.

2008-01-22 15:12:21
16.   Eric Enders
One of these days, rock, hip-hop and other modern musical forms will begin to get a fair shake from the Academy, although that hasn't happened yet. Currently, to win with song in one of thoese genres, it has to be both (a) a big popular hit, and (b) light years better than the other nominees. So we get the occasional Isaac Hayes, Springsteen, Dylan, or Eminem winning, but not much else.
2008-01-22 15:14:10
17.   overkill94
Unfortunately I don't make it to the theaters nearly enough and thus I never get caught up with all the important movies until I see them on DVD, so I don't have much of an opinion on most of the nominations.

That being said, I really hope "Falling Slowly" wins for best song. I can't remember a song affecting a movie so much.

2008-01-22 15:14:38
18.   overkill94
16 Don't forget the Three Six Mafia!
2008-01-22 15:23:27
19.   El Lay Dave
I know nothing about this song, but the nomination note intrigues me:

"Raise It Up" from "August Rush" (Warner Bros.) Nominees to be determined

2008-01-22 15:39:43
20.   ibleedbloo
9 I have not seen Juno yet, but after watching No Country and TWBB over the weekend, I am kind of looking forward to a "predictable" ending. While neither No Country nor TWBB had Sixth Sense endings, it is sometimes nice to see a story develop and actually not be shocked by the ending.

That being said, I also watched Good Luck Chuck this weekend and predictability is often over rated. My 5 word review of Good Luck Chuck; "Fun, better than I expected." How is Jessica Alba not up for best Actress? Outrageous!

2008-01-22 15:47:38
21.   Jon Weisman
20 - I've said this before, but I still have never seen Jessica Alba act.
2008-01-22 15:57:04
22.   Kevin Lewis
9 10

I thought the dramatic arc of the film was quite good.

2008-01-22 16:09:24
23.   Suffering Bruin
Heath Ledger died of an apparent overdose. He was 28.

I'm kind of numb right now.

2008-01-22 16:25:53
24.   bigcpa
15 You got me. I knew there was a double nominee that year, but I forgot to check the Timmer-pedia before posting. That said I already have 3 bathroom breaks planned for this year show- whether I have to go or not.
2008-01-22 16:37:04
25.   El Lay Dave
24 If the writers' strike continues, you won't need all three.
2008-01-22 17:39:02
26.   LAT
Jessica Alba = Phobe Cates of her generation.
2008-01-22 17:44:27
27.   Bob Timmermann
Jessica Alba is not getting married to someone as talented as Kevin Kline.
2008-01-22 17:54:06
28.   eekrock
15 gotta admit, I was pulling for A Mighty Wind there. To have seen Eugene Levy & Catherine O'Harre accepting an Oscar would've made me beside myself.

And the Guest/Levy troop deserves some recognition in the long run, right? (that said, For Your Consideration was not enjoyable...)

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.