Next Sunday

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Yvonne and I love our Academy Awards. We love watching, hearing the speeches, cursing at the tv when our favorites are overlooked and simply sitting around for three plus hours for what is, usually, a quite boring show.

For us more sedate types known in social circles as sofa spuds, this is our Super Bowl sans the commercials and hoopla. Truly, how does one go about distributing awards for accomplishments in film when every film is different?

In a perfect world, all the nominees would get awards and no one would be better than anyone else. While I have criticized this practice as respects kids’ sports (little league), practically screaming from the rafters ‘There has to be a winner, how else will these kids build character?’, I don’t think distinct, unique contributions to film can be pitched against one another.

When looking to compare films, how does one rate the silent, brilliance of The Artist (a black and white, no audible dialogue movie) with say, the complex, rapid fire discourse in the baseball film Moneyball? Each film brings something to the table and each should have a seat at that table.

George Clooney is an appealing actor. I love the nuances in his eyes and expressions, the way he conveys thought through subtle movement – does this mean that he is a better actor than Gary Oldman who has played everything from Commissioner Gordon to Dracula to Sid Vicious? I don’t think so and hence the reason why all should receive accolades not just one per category.

Meryl Streep is the finest actress of our time. Plain and simple, if she is in a movie, she is usually going to deliver an award worthy performance (every actor has a few stumbles, remember her in Roseanne’s She-Devil?), but why not give someone like Glenn Close (another fine actress) an opportunity to thank the academy (Close has never had the chance)?

My idea of a perfect Oscar ceremony is having everyone come up, get a plaque and say a few words. It might be more boring, but we will hear from more people and everyone will have a chance to dance in Oscar’s golden light. This will stop us all from trying to handicap a race that in recent years has followed absolutely no discernible trend.

But alas, we try – my picks for next week (barring any type of sweep from The Help):

Actor – Should Win: Brad Pitt / Will Win: Jean Dujardin
Actress – Should Win: Glenn Close / Will Win: Meryl Streep
Supporting Actor – Should Win: Nick Nolte / Will Win: Christopher Plummer
Supporting Actress – Should Win: Jessica Chastain / Will Win: Octavia Spencer
Best Picture: Should Win: The Artist / Will Win: The Artist

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