"Rango" Movie Review! Check Out Johnny Depp as a Reaganesque Hero! 


Johnny Depp has not been on top of his game recently. His performance in the much-maligned “The Tourist” was largely forgettable, and I would argue that his Mad Hatter portrayal in “Alice in Wonderland” was an offshoot of his Willie Wonka role in “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.”


So I’m happy to report that my faith in Depp has been restored with his voice work as a lizard in the new animated tale “Rango.” And it took his “Pirates of the Caribbean” director, Gore Verbinski, to get his groove back. Read More...

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"The King's Speech" Triumphant! Film Tops 83rd Academy Awards! Check Out Complete List of Winners and Nominees! 


Tom Hooper's "The King's Speech" lorded over the festivities at the 83rd annual Academy Awards. The film, nominated for 12 Oscars, won 4 including Best Picture, Director for Tom Hooper, Actor for King Colin Firth, and Original Screenplay for David Seidler.

David Fincher's "The Social Network" took home 3 awards including Best Film Editing, Original Score for Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, and Best Adapted Screenplay for Aaron Sorkin.

(For my minute-by-minute look at the 2011 Oscars, please click here, trust me, it's fun!)

As expected, Natalie Portman took home Oscar gold for her performance as a delusional ballerina in "Black Swan." "The Fighter" yielded the Best Supporting performances of the year with Christian Bale winning Best Supporting Actor and Melissa Leo taking home the Best Supporting Actress Oscar.

Christopher Nolan's "Inception" took home most of the technical categories including Best Visual Effects, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, and Best Cinematography for Wally Pfister.

Tim Burton's "Alice in Wonderland" received two Oscars with Best Art Direction and Best Costume Design.

Like I've said before, there was no clear-cut favorite, the Academy shared Oscar wealth among multiple movies. It was fun, zippy awards night and James Franco and Anne Hathaway provided commendable jobs with their hosting duties.

The awards season is officially over, now, let's move on and gather the best of the best for next year's Academy awards!

Here's your complete winners (highlighted) and nominees of the 83rd annual Academy Awards (in alphabetical order):

Actor in a Leading Role
Javier Bardem in “Biutiful”
Jeff Bridges in “True Grit”
Jesse Eisenberg in “The Social Network”
*** Colin Firth in “The King's Speech”
James Franco in “127 Hours”

Actor in a Supporting Role
*** Christian Bale in “The Fighter”
John Hawkes in “Winter's Bone”
Jeremy Renner in “The Town”
Mark Ruffalo in “The Kids Are All Right”
Geoffrey Rush in “The King's Speech”

Actress in a Leading Role
Annette Bening in “The Kids Are All Right”
Nicole Kidman in “Rabbit Hole”
Jennifer Lawrence in “Winter's Bone”
*** Natalie Portman in “Black Swan”
Michelle Williams in “Blue Valentine”

Actress in a Supporting Role
Amy Adams in “The Fighter”
Helena Bonham Carter in “The King's Speech”
*** Melissa Leo in “The Fighter”
Hailee Steinfeld in “True Grit”
Jacki Weaver in “Animal Kingdom”

Animated Feature Film
“How to Train Your Dragon” Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois
“The Illusionist” Sylvain Chomet
*** “Toy Story 3” Lee Unkrich

Art Direction

*** “Alice in Wonderland”
Production Design: Robert Stromberg; Set Decoration: Karen O'Hara

“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1”
Production Design: Stuart Craig; Set Decoration: Stephenie McMillan
“Inception”
Production Design: Guy Hendrix Dyas; Set Decoration: Larry Dias and Doug Mowat
“The King's Speech”
Production Design: Eve Stewart; Set Decoration: Judy Farr
“True Grit”
Production Design: Jess Gonchor; Set Decoration: Nancy Haigh

Cinematography
“Black Swan” Matthew Libatique
*** “Inception” Wally Pfister
“The King's Speech” Danny Cohen
“The Social Network” Jeff Cronenweth
“True Grit” Roger Deakins

Costume Design
*** “Alice in Wonderland” Colleen Atwood
“I Am Love” Antonella Cannarozzi
“The King's Speech” Jenny Beavan
“The Tempest” Sandy Powell
“True Grit” Mary Zophres

Directing
“Black Swan” Darren Aronofsky
“The Fighter” David O. Russell
*** “The King's Speech” Tom Hooper
“The Social Network” David Fincher
“True Grit” Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

Documentary (Feature)
“Exit through the Gift Shop” Banksy and Jaimie D'Cruz
“Gasland” Josh Fox and Trish Adlesic
*** “Inside Job” Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
“Restrepo” Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger
“Waste Land” Lucy Walker and Angus Aynsley

Documentary (Short Subject)
“Killing in the Name” Nominees to be determined
“Poster Girl” Nominees to be determined
*** “Strangers No More” Karen Goodman and Kirk Simon
“Sun Come Up” Jennifer Redfearn and Tim Metzger
“The Warriors of Qiugang” Ruby Yang and Thomas Lennon

Film Editing
“Black Swan” Andrew Weisblum
“The Fighter” Pamela Martin
“The King's Speech” Tariq Anwar
“127 Hours” Jon Harris
*** “The Social Network” Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter

Foreign Language Film
“Biutiful” Mexico
“Dogtooth” Greece
*** “In a Better World” Denmark
“Incendies” Canada
“Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi)” Algeria

Makeup
“Barney's Version” Adrien Morot
“The Way Back” Edouard F. Henriques, Gregory Funk and Yolanda Toussieng
*** “The Wolfman” Rick Baker and Dave Elsey

Music (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

Music (Original Song)
“Coming Home” from “Country Strong” Music and Lyric by Tom Douglas, Troy Verges and Hillary Lindsey
“I See the Light” from “Tangled” Music by Alan Menken Lyric by Glenn Slater
“If I Rise” from “127 Hours” Music by A.R. Rahman Lyric by Dido and Rollo Armstrong
*** “We Belong Together” from “Toy Story 3" Music and Lyric by Randy Newman

Best Picture
“Black Swan” Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin, Producers
“The Fighter” David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg, Producers
“Inception” Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan, Producers
“The Kids Are All Right” Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray, Producers
*** “The King's Speech” Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, Producers
“127 Hours” Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson, Producers
“The Social Network” Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceán Chaffin, Producers
“Toy Story 3” Darla K. Anderson, Producer
“True Grit” Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers
“Winter's Bone" Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin, Producers

Short Film (Animated)
“Day & Night” Teddy Newton
“The Gruffalo” Jakob Schuh and Max Lang
“Let's Pollute” Geefwee Boedoe
*** “The Lost Thing” Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann
“Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary)” Bastien Dubois

Short Film (Live Action)
“The Confession” Tanel Toom
“The Crush” Michael Creagh
*** “God of Love” Luke Matheny
“Na Wewe” Ivan Goldschmidt
“Wish 143” Ian Barnes and Samantha Waite

Sound Editing
*** “Inception” Richard King
“Toy Story 3” Tom Myers and Michael Silvers
“Tron: Legacy” Gwendolyn Yates Whittle and Addison Teague
“True Grit” Skip Lievsay and Craig Berkey
“Unstoppable” Mark P. Stoeckinger

Sound Mixing
*** “Inception” Lora Hirschberg, Gary A. Rizzo and Ed Novick
“The King's Speech” Paul Hamblin, Martin Jensen and John Midgley
“Salt” Jeffrey J. Haboush, Greg P. Russell, Scott Millan and William Sarokin
“The Social Network” Ren Klyce, David Parker, Michael Semanick and Mark Weingarten
“True Grit” Skip Lievsay, Craig Berkey, Greg Orloff and Peter F. Kurland

Visual Effects
“Alice in Wonderland” Ken Ralston, David Schaub, Carey Villegas and Sean Phillips
“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1” Tim Burke, John Richardson, Christian Manz and Nicolas Aithadi
“Hereafter” Michael Owens, Bryan Grill, Stephan Trojanski and Joe Farrell
*** “Inception” Paul Franklin, Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb
“Iron Man 2” Janek Sirrs, Ben Snow, Ged Wright and Daniel Sudick

Writing (Adapted Screenplay)
“127 Hours” Screenplay by Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy
*** “The Social Network” Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin
“Toy Story 3” Screenplay by Michael Arndt; Story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich
“True Grit” Written for the screen by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
“Winter's Bone” Adapted for the screen by Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini

Writing (Original Screenplay)
“Another Year” Written by Mike Leigh
“The Fighter” Screenplay by Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson;
Story by Keith Dorrington & Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson
“Inception” Written by Christopher Nolan
“The Kids Are All Right” Written by Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg
*** “The King's Speech” Screenplay by David Seidler

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2011 Oscars Blogfest -- Minute-by-Minute Look at the 83rd Annual Academy Awards! The Winners!!! The Losers!!! The Show!!! The Excitement!!!! 


22:18 to the Oscars! Sandra Bullock is RED HOT! Can't wait for the Academy Awards! Christian Bale and his beard!

12:34 to the Oscars! Different actors reveal their Oscar picks!

COMMERCIAL BREAK: Tomorrow, Britney Spears reveals...something! On Good Morning America :wink

4:57 to the Oscars! So apparently, Roberto Benigni's heartfelt acceptance speech is the best, next was Tom Hanks' Best Actor speech when he won for "Philadelphia" in 1994

The Oscars is about to start!!!!

5:30 THE 83RD ANNUAL ACADEMY AWARDS

I know I'm a sucker for Oscar montage! I am I am!

So James Franco and Anne Hathaway are doing a Billy Crystal type of open where they are melded into the famous scenes of the Oscar-nominated films. So Alec Baldwin was the surprise guest! Is Billy Crystal going to show up?

I kind of like the "True Grit" bit!

Morgan Freeman...another surprise guest!

Aw..."Back to the Future!"

Okay, the intro sets up the tone -- fun, fluffy, with a little bit of snarky wit!

James Franco and Anne Hathaway are sooooooooo cute!

5:42 Tom Hanks to present two awards! "Gone with the Wind" was shown for it was the first film to meld Best Cinematography and Best Art Direction.

Gosh..."Titanic" always melts my heart!!!

5:45 "Alice in Wonderland" takes home Best Art Direction!

5:48 I predicted this one...Wally Pfister wins Best Cinematography for "Inception!" Yay!

5:51 Aw...Kirk Douglas makes an appearance...it's heartwarming...but...did he have a bad plastic surgery?

So, Christoph Waltz was supposed to present the Best Supporting Actress category, but he's shooting abroad and couldn't leave...really?

I love Jacki Weaver for "Animal Kingdom!!!"

I love Melissa Leo too!

I love Hailee Steinfeld too!

AND THE BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS OSCAR GOES TO...

Way to heighten the suspense Kirk Douglas!

AND THE BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS OSCAR GOES TO MELISSA LEO FOR "THE FIGHTER!" YAY! I PREDICTED THIS ONE TOO!

So those overbearing Oscar ads did NOT hurt Melissa Leo one bit!

She really deserved to win for 2008's Frozen River, did you guys see that criminally underseen film? RENT IT!!!

Did Melissa Leo just said f...ing? SHE'S A ROCK STAR!

Melissa Leo actually looks HOT! And real!

Now...it's Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake's turn! And he's Bansky!

And the Best Animated Feature goes to...TOY STORY 3...just give it to Pixar already!

AND THE BEST SHORT FILM (ANIMATED) GOES TO..."THE LOST THING!"

And now...the BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM...IT GOES TO...

I would be soooooo happy if HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON wins...but...alas....

YES...TOY STORY 3!!!

The whole Bansky reference? The director of the documentary Exit Through the Gift Shop...fantastic documentary! He was threatening to attend the Oscars in full incognito!

6:14 Oh look..."No Country for Old Men's" Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin) and Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem)...together on the screen again!

Yay....Aaron Sorkin wins Best Adapted Screenplay for THE SOCIAL NETWORK!

Told you "King's Speech" will win Best Original Screenplay...sorry Christopher Nolan!!!!

David Seidler's acceptance speech has one of the best lines..."my father always said I was a late bloomer!"

6:20 Anne Hathaway can sing! Sing it girl! Her homage to Hugh Jackman!

Holy crap...james Franco doesn't make a good tranny :tongue

Okay...Russell Brand and Helen Mirren are introducing the Best Foreign Language film...let's see if Denmark wins!

AND YES...IN A BETTER WORLD WINS BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE...Okay...so far...I only missed the Best Short Film (animated) category :)

6:29 BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR...Reese Witherspoon is about to call the lucky winner

I'm nervous for Christian Bale...and his beard!

AND THE OSCAR GOES TO...

CHRISTIAN BALE FOR "THE FIGHTER!"

Time for another drink!

Commercial break--once upon a time...Hollywood hated Christian Bale for his ranting in the set of TERMINATOR: SALVATION...see? Hollywood loves happy endings! Check out my interview with Bale for that movie!

6:39 Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman of "Australia" fame are back to present Best Original Score!

I HOPE I HOPE I HOPE...TRENT REZNOR AND ATTICUS ROSS WIN FOR "THE SOCIAL NETWORK!!!"

And the Oscar for BEST ORIGINAL SCORE goes to...

TRENT REZNOR AND ATTICUS ROSS FOR "THE SOCIAL NETWORK!!!"

6:45 Scarlett Johannson and Matthew McConaughey present BEST SOUND! Please "Inception," please?

And the Oscar for Best Sound goes to "INCEPTION!"

Scarlett Johannson and Matthew McConaughey present BEST SOUND! Please "Inception," please?

And yes..."Inception" wins Best Sound Mixing!

6:54 Marisa Tomei presents the special achievement Oscars which prompts Franco to say "congratulations nerds!"

6:55 Cate Blanchett is divine! Simple, but ravishing!

Best Make-Up goes to Rick Baker for "The Wolfman" -- Hair! Beasts! Wolves!

6:58 And the Oscar for Best Costume Design goes to Colleen Atwood for "Alice in Wonderland!" She also won for "Chicago" and "Memoirs of a Geisha."

Is it commercial yet? Oh wait...Best Original Song!

I'm such a nerd...I'm not a big fan of Celine Dion but everytime I hear "My Heart Will Go On" I cry...well, not quite!

Was that our lovely President Barack Obama ruminating about Best Original Song?

Oh look, it's Kevin Spacey!

Oh look, it's Randy Newman...again...and for another Disney movie...again!

Oh look, it's Alan Menken...again...and for another Disney movie...again!

Oh wait...while we're being serenaded by our lovely Best Original Song nominees, I forgot to point out, Monique, who won Best Supporting Actress Oscar last year, did not want to show up to present this year, hence, Reese Witherspoon presented the Best Supporting Actor category!

I need another drink!!! And I'm getting hungry!!!

7:12 Amy Adams and Jake Gyllenhaal to present Best Documentary Short Subject...

And the winner for Best Doc Short is "Strangers No More"...ooops, I missed that one...I voted for "Killing in the Name!"

And the Oscar for Best Short Film Live Action is "God of Love." Oooops, I voted for "The Confession!"

Oh I love this montage for 2010 faux musicals!

The best part? "He Doesn't Have A Shirt," by Edward Cullen from "The Twilight Saga: Eclipse."

And here's Opraaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

It would be really cool if "Exit Through the Gift Shop" wins!

But "Inside Job" wins! I predicted that one...yay! Charles Ferguson previously was nominated for "No End in Sight."

Ferguson delivers one of the night's political sting -- none of the architects of the economic meltdown is in jail! Shame on them!

So it wasn't a rumor! Billy Crystal makes an appearance! Talking about the great Bob Hope hosting the Academy Awards!

Wow, did Bob Hope just introduced Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law? Wow, a Technical miracle! Or, editing wonder!

Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law look good together, don't they?

Wow...did Law just make a dig at Downey Jr.'s past indiscretions?

And the winner of Best Visual Effects is..."Inception!"

And the Best Film Editing award goes to Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter for "The Social Network!" If "Inception" was rightfully nominated in this category, it would have won...but alas!

7:40 It's true..."How to Train Your Dragon" title is...naughty! :tongue

This "127 Hours" song...MUST WIN! It's spine-tingling!

Go Jennifer Hudson Go!

Oooooh, Gwyneth Paltrow is getting her country groove on! Too bad "Country Strong" was largely ignored!

And the winner for BEST ORIGINAL SONG is...Randy Newman...again....for We Belong Together from TOY STORY 3...really?

Wasn't I just talking about Celine Dion earlier? Oh...In Memoriam...I need tissues!!!!!!

Okay, only the top categories left!

Lena Horne survived all the stormy weather that came her way...great line!

When is Halle Berry going to let her hair grow? Time for a change!

And fade to black...

8:02 Oooh, I love Anne Hathaway's electric blue gown!

‎8:03 Hilary Swank introduces Kathryn Bigelow (last year's winner for "The Hurt Locker") to present the Best Director to...DAVID FINCHER PLEASE?

OH NO...TOM HOOPER WINS FOR "THE KING'S SPEECH!!!!" Sorry, David Fincher :sad

So the Directors Guild Awards were in line with the Academy this year...again!

Yes, listen to your mothers y'all!

The gorgeous Annette Bening gets the Oscar fanfare!

Aw...Eli Wallach!

Gosh...I miss the Coppola, Scorsese, Spielberg, Lucas days!

‎8:12 Jeff Bridges takes the stage for Best Actress!

OH GOSH...I WISH ANNETTE BENING WINS...I'm crying again :sad

But you know? Julianne Moore should have been nominated as well!

I've always known the Academy was going to use that bathroom clip for Natalie Portman...just her and the camera...no cuts!

Oh gosh...will the delusional ballerina win?

And the Oscar for Best Actress goes to...Natalie Portman for "Black Swan!"

She is a hot pregnant momma, isn't she?

And there she is again...the current Queen of Hollywood, Sandra Bullock who is so hot, hot, hot in red! She's presenting the Best Actor Award...

Jesse Eisenberg always looks like a scaredy cat!

You know, Sandra Bullock should host next year's Oscars! She's good with this whole ad-libbing, charming thing!

8:26 AND THE BEST ACTOR OSCAR GOES TO...Colin Firth for "The King's Speech!" And his speech is soooo...endearing!

8:32 Steven Spielberg emerges giving a great Oscar analogy of Best Picture winners and losers -- yeah, the fantastic, classic "Raging Bull" did not win Oscar gold!

I love using the speech in "King's Speech" as the "soundtrack" of the Best Picture montage!

Were people booing "The Fighter?"

AND THE OSCAR FOR BEST PICTURE GOES TO..."THE KING'S SPEECH!"

Nominated for 12 Oscars, Tom Hooper's "The King's Speech" won 4 including the big one, Best Picture, and Director, Actor, and Original Screenplay!

Okay, I just realized...this year's Oscar stage is actually very practical but avant-garde!

Okay, another hot costume change for Anne Hathaway...this time...in a fierce, bejeweled, beglittered gown!

Aw..these Staten Island kids stole the show!

GOOSEBUMPS GALORE!

That was a fun Oscar, wasn't it? What do you think? Fast and zippy!

Or probably because I was just too darn busy blogging, time flew by!

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Reposting: My Complete, Fearless 2011 Oscar Predictions! Then Come Back Here and Join My Oscar Minute-by-Minute Blogfest! 


It's hard to predict the winners of this year's Oscars because there is no clear-cut favorite. Last year, Kathryn Bigelow's "The Hurt Locker" started strong during awards season and maintained its dominance all the way to its Oscar best picture victory. This year, David Fincher's "The Social Network" triumphed in the beginning but the Oscar buzz surrounding the movie is slowly fading away.

But I still have my favorites and I will attempt to handicap the Oscars. Here are my predictions of who should take home Oscar gold at the 83rd Annual Academy Awards.



BEST PICTURE
“Black Swan” Mike Medavoy, Brian Oliver and Scott Franklin, Producers
“The Fighter” David Hoberman, Todd Lieberman and Mark Wahlberg, Producers
“Inception” Emma Thomas and Christopher Nolan, Producers
“The Kids Are All Right” Gary Gilbert, Jeffrey Levy-Hinte and Celine Rattray, Producers
“The King's Speech” Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Gareth Unwin, Producers
“127 Hours” Christian Colson, Danny Boyle and John Smithson, Producers
“The Social Network” Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, Michael De Luca and Ceán Chaffin, Producers
“Toy Story 3” Darla K. Anderson, Producer
“True Grit” Scott Rudin, Ethan Coen and Joel Coen, Producers
“Winter's Bone" Anne Rosellini and Alix Madigan-Yorkin, Producers

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- "The King's Speech"

From fine performances to Tom Hooper's direction, "The King's Speech" has Oscars written all over it. The Academy loves "against all odds" stories and the true-life tale of King George VI trying to overcome his speech impediment to unite his country will have voters clapping for Oscar joy. Plus, "The King's Speech" continues to triumph at the box-office ($104 million and counting) and in Hollywood, that counts for gold.

BEST DIRECTOR
“Black Swan” Darren Aronofsky
“The Fighter” David O. Russell
“The King's Speech” Tom Hooper
“The Social Network” David Fincher
“True Grit” Joel Coen and Ethan Coen

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- David Fincher for "The Social Network"

Normally, whoever gets crowned as best director by the Directors Guild of America moves on to win an Oscar. Not this year. While Hooper certainly deserved his DGA award, he is still a relatively unknown director to the Academy. Therefore, they will bestow the award to Fincher, who was previously nominated for "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button."

BEST ACTOR
Javier Bardem in “Biutiful”
Jeff Bridges in “True Grit”
Jesse Eisenberg in “The Social Network”
Colin Firth in “The King's Speech”
James Franco in “127 Hours”

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- Colin Firth for "The King's Speech"

In an ideal Oscar season, Firth should have won last year for "A Single Man" to give way for Jeff Bridges' equally powerful performance in "True Grit" this year. But the Oscar gods were playing tricks on us and gave Bridges an Oscar for "Crazy Heart" last year. Firth is a clear-cut favorite in this category to win this year, and he will take home the Oscar. The Academy loves disabled characters on the big screen, just watch "Tropic Thunder" for reference.

BEST ACTRESS
Annette Bening in “The Kids Are All Right”
Nicole Kidman in “Rabbit Hole”
Jennifer Lawrence in “Winter's Bone”
Natalie Portman in “Black Swan”
Michelle Williams in “Blue Valentine”

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- Natalie Portman for "Black Swan"

This is the category where my heart aches. I adore Portman, and I think she's a brilliant actress stemming from her memorable debut in 1994's "The Professional." Sure, she's the clear-cut favorite to win an Oscar, but her performance in "Black Swan" was heavily edited and relied too much on Darren Aronofsky's direction. Contrast that with Annette Bening's standout portrayal of a jilted lesbian mother in "The Kids Are All Right." No quick edits and no cinematic sleight of hand, just old-school acting at its finest.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Christian Bale in “The Fighter”

John Hawkes in “Winter's Bone”
Jeremy Renner in “The Town”
Mark Ruffalo in “The Kids Are All Right”
Geoffrey Rush in “The King's Speech”

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- Christian Bale for "The Fighter"

Witness Bale's impressive turn in David O. Russell's "The Fighter." He will grab a hold of you from the beginning and will not let go until the very end. Among all the nominees, I still could not shake away Bale's performance.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Amy Adams in “The Fighter”
Helena Bonham Carter in “The King's Speech”
Melissa Leo in “The Fighter”
Hailee Steinfeld in “True Grit”
Jacki Weaver in “Animal Kingdom”

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- Melissa Leo for "The Fighter"

Leo should have won an Oscar for her heartbreaking performance in 2008's "Frozen River." So the Academy will make amends by giving her the trophy this year even though I think Hailee Steinfeld of "True Grit" deserves it more.

BEST WRITING (ADAPTED SCREENPLAY)
“127 Hours” Screenplay by Danny Boyle & Simon Beaufoy
“The Social Network” Screenplay by Aaron Sorkin
“Toy Story 3” Screenplay by Michael Arndt; Story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich
“True Grit” Written for the screen by Joel Coen & Ethan Coen
“Winter's Bone” Adapted for the screen by Debra Granik & Anne Rosellini

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- Aaron Sorkin for "The Social Network"

When I reviewed "The Social Network" last September, I predicted that Sorkin's script, full of unreliable narrators and memorable lines, would win this category. I still believe that. (Check out my "The Social Network" movie review right here)

BEST WRITING (ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY)
“Another Year” Written by Mike Leigh
“The Fighter” Screenplay by Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson;
Story by Keith Dorrington & Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson
“Inception” Written by Christopher Nolan
“The Kids Are All Right” Written by Lisa Cholodenko & Stuart Blumberg
“The King's Speech” Screenplay by David Seidler

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO -- David Seidler for "The King's Speech"


The brilliant Christopher Nolan took home a Writers Guild of America award for best original screenplay for "Inception." But the Academy deems the movie as too mind-bending, and relegates it to the special-effects bin. "Inception" will win all the technical categories, but will be ignored for its script. Seidler's lyrical prose for "The King's Speech" will take home the gold instead.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM

“How to Train Your Dragon” Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois
“The Illusionist” Sylvain Chomet
“Toy Story 3” Lee Unkrich

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Toy Story 3”


Is it even a question that Pixar will win this category? Plus, the Academy nominated “Toy Story 3” as one of the Best Picture contenders. It will not win Best Film, but it will be the Best Animated Feature Film.

BEST ART DIRECTION

“Alice in Wonderland”
Production Design: Robert Stromberg; Set Decoration: Karen O'Hara
“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1”
Production Design: Stuart Craig; Set Decoration: Stephenie McMillan
“Inception”
Production Design: Guy Hendrix Dyas; Set Decoration: Larry Dias and Doug Mowat

“The King's Speech”
Production Design: Eve Stewart; Set Decoration: Judy Farr
“True Grit”
Production Design: Jess Gonchor; Set Decoration: Nancy Haigh

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Inception”

Its brilliant art direction already won the Art Directors Guild award for Fantasy Film. But “King’s Speech” also won for Period Film. Between the two movies, who has the most eye-popping visual look? Yes, “Inception!”

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

“Black Swan” Matthew Libatique
“Inception” Wally Pfister
“The King's Speech” Danny Cohen
“The Social Network” Jeff Cronenweth
“True Grit” Roger Deakins

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Inception”

I enjoyed Roger Deakins’ work in “True Grit” and Matthew Libatique’s in “Black Swan,” but Wally Pfister’s cinematography mesmerized me last summer and I still couldn’t forget the film’s great visuals! Plus points for Pfister for winning the ASC American Society of Cinematographers award over favorite Deakins.

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

“Alice in Wonderland” Colleen Atwood
“I Am Love” Antonella Cannarozzi
“The King's Speech” Jenny Beavan
“The Tempest” Sandy Powell
“True Grit” Mary Zophres

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Alice in Wonderland”

This is a tough one. Both “Alice” and “King’s Speech” won Costume Designers Guild Awards for Fantasy and Period categories, respectively. But I will go with Colleen Atwood’s work in “Alice in Wonderland.” It’s the most vibrant and imaginative piece of work among the nominees. And in this category, when all else fails, think…fantasy!

BEST DOCUMENTARY (FEATURE)

“Exit through the Gift Shop” Banksy and Jaimie D'Cruz
“Gasland” Josh Fox and Trish Adlesic
“Inside Job” Charles Ferguson and Audrey Marrs
“Restrepo” Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger
“Waste Land” Lucy Walker and Angus Aynsley

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Inside Job”

I’m still bummed that “Waiting for Superman” did not get a nomination, even though it won a Producers Guild Award for documentary. So that leaves Writers Guild Award winner, “Inside Job,” to win. But truth be told, I’m rooting for Banksy’s “Exit through the Gift Shop.”

BEST DOCUMENTARY (SHORT)

“Killing in the Name” Jed Rothstein
“Poster Girl” Sara Nesson and Mitchell W. Block
“Strangers No More” Karen Goodman and Kirk Simon
“Sun Come Up” Jennifer Redfearn and Tim Metzger
“The Warriors of Qiugang” Ruby Yang and Thomas Lennon

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Killing in the Name”

I really enjoyed “The Warriors of Oiugang” but “Killing in the Name” has a strong, Oscar-ready subject – one Jordanian’s fight against Muslim extremists!

BEST FILM EDITING

“Black Swan” Andrew Weisblum
“The Fighter” Pamela Martin
“The King's Speech” Tariq Anwar
“127 Hours” Jon Harris
“The Social Network” Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “The Social Network”


Too bad “Inception” wasn’t nominated. It’s dazzlingly, well-choreographed editing work helped us follow the mind-bending trip. BUT, “The Social Network” benefitted greatly from Angus Wall’s and Kirk Baxter’s editing work. And the film already won the ACE Eddie Award for Best Edited Dramatic Feature. So there!

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

“Biutiful” Mexico
“Dogtooth” Greece
“In a Better World” Denmark
“Incendies” Canada
“Outside the Law (Hors-la-loi)” Algeria

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “In a Better World”

I love “Biutiful,” and Canada’s “Incendies” was also, well, beautiful (actually, more like terrifically devastating), but the buzz belongs to Denmark’s “In a Better World” which was helped by its Golden Globe win!

BEST MAKEUP

“Barney's Version” Adrien Morot
“The Way Back” Edouard F. Henriques, Gregory Funk and Yolanda Toussieng
“The Wolfman” Rick Baker and Dave Elsey

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “The Wolfman”


Wolves! Hair! Fangs!

BEST MUSIC (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

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “The Social Network”


Sure, the Academy loves classical, but remember, they also awarded A.R. Rahman’s score for “Slumdog Millionaire.” And the work by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for “The Social Network” blended seamlessly with the film. So my heart and my mind both “like” the “The Social Network.”

BEST MUSIC (ORIGINAL SONG)

“Coming Home” from “Country Strong” Music and Lyric by Tom Douglas, Troy Verges and Hillary Lindsey
“I See the Light” from “Tangled” Music by Alan Menken Lyric by Glenn Slater
“If I Rise” from “127 Hours” Music by A.R. Rahman Lyric by Dido and Rollo Armstrong
“We Belong Together” from “Toy Story 3" Music and Lyric by Randy Newman

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “If I Rise” from “127 Hours”

Randy Newman and Alan Menken will probably split the votes here, and so, the emerging winner will be the Critics’ Choice darling, “If I Rise” from “127 Hours.” Go Dido!

BEST SHORT FILM (ANIMATED)

“Day & Night” Teddy Newton
“The Gruffalo” Jakob Schuh and Max Lang
“Let's Pollute” Geefwee Boedoe
“The Lost Thing” Shaun Tan and Andrew Ruhemann
“Madagascar, carnet de voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary)” Bastien Dubois

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “The Gruffalo”

I love Pixar’s “Day & Night,” but “Toy Story 3” will win the Animated Feature. Too much love is not a good thing so the Academy will favor the buzzworthy “The Gruffalo” voiced by Helena Bonham Carter.

BEST SHORT FILM (LIVE ACTION)

“The Confession” Tanel Toom
“The Crush” Michael Creagh
“God of Love” Luke Matheny
“Na Wewe” Ivan Goldschmidt
“Wish 143” Ian Barnes and Samantha Waite

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “The Confession”

I love “Na Wewe,” genocide with a light, airy tone, but I think “The Confession” will win since it’s the best directed effort here.

BEST SOUND EDITING

“Inception” Richard King
“Toy Story 3” Tom Myers and Michael Silvers
“Tron: Legacy” Gwendolyn Yates Whittle and Addison Teague
“True Grit” Skip Lievsay and Craig Berkey
“Unstoppable” Mark P. Stoeckinger

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Inception”

Give it to “Inception” already!

BEST SOUND MIXING

“Inception” Lora Hirschberg, Gary A. Rizzo and Ed Novick
“The King's Speech” Paul Hamblin, Martin Jensen and John Midgley
“Salt” Jeffrey J. Haboush, Greg P. Russell, Scott Millan and William Sarokin
“The Social Network” Ren Klyce, David Parker, Michael Semanick and Mark Weingarten
“True Grit” Skip Lievsay, Craig Berkey, Greg Orloff and Peter F. Kurland

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Inception”

Yes, it’s technically flawless!

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

“Alice in Wonderland” Ken Ralston, David Schaub, Carey Villegas and Sean Phillips
“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1” Tim Burke, John Richardson, Christian Manz and Nicolas Aithadi
“Hereafter” Michael Owens, Bryan Grill, Stephan Trojanski and Joe Farrell
“Inception” Paul Franklin, Chris Corbould, Andrew Lockley and Peter Bebb
“Iron Man 2” Janek Sirrs, Ben Snow, Ged Wright and Daniel Sudick

AND THE OSCAR WILL GO TO – “Inception”

The moment we saw the buildings became roads and vice versa, I was hooked! If you think other contenders deserve this award? Dream on y’all!

NOTE:

Come back here to join my live, minute-by-minute Oscar blog on Sunday, February 27th starting at 4:30pm Pacific. Grab your drinks and finger foods, we'll blog the Oscars until we're all drunk! Come on, admit it, you want to talk fashion!


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"Gnomeo & Juliet" Tramples "Hall Pass" on Oscar Weekend 


Walt Disney's G-rated "Gnomeo & Juliet" beat the Farrelly brothers' R-rated "Hall Pass" at the box-office on Oscar weekend. The animated tale with a Shakespearean twist held strongly on its third week of release taking the No. 1 spot with $14.2 million.

Meanwhile, the raunchy but sweet "Hall Pass" from the creators of "There's Something About Mary" starring Owen Wilson, Jason Sudeikis, Jenna Fischer, and Christina Applegate debuted at No. 2 with $13.4 million. (Check out my interviews with the cast and the Farrelly brothers for "Hall Pass" right here)

But the sad flop story of the weekend belonged to Nicolas Cage and Summit Entertainment. Their "Drive Angry 3D" sold just $5.1 million worth of box-office tickets landing at No. 9. OUCH!

Meanwhile, Liam Neeson's "Unknown" continued to perform rather well in its second week of release. So far, the mystery thriller has accumulated $42.8 million for Warner Bros.

As Hollywood gathers for the Academy Awards tonight, Oscar favorites such as "The King's Speech" (No. 7 with $7.6 million) and "True Grit (No. 10 with $1.9 million) continue to make box-office dough.

Here's the estimated list of the Top 10 box-office movies for Oscar weekend (final tally will be released Tuesday):

1. "Gnomeo & Juliet," $14.2 million.

2. "Hall Pass," $13.4 million.

3. "Unknown," $12.4 million.

4. "Just Go With It," $11.1 million.

5. "I Am Number Four," $11 million.

6. "Justin Bieber: Never Say Never," $9.2 million.

7. "The King's Speech," $7.6 million.

8. "Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son," $7.6 million.

9. "Drive Angry," $5.1 million.

10. "True Grit," $1.9 million.

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