Friday, February 13, 2009
The 81st Academy Awards
For the last few years or so right here at Chicken Scratch I would pick whom I thought was going to win the big categories for the Academy Awards. I would do this yearly not because I’m “star struck” or care whatever whoever is wearing, no; I did it because I love movies. I am a movie geek. It’s what I do.
This being the case, I have a confession… of the five films nominated for best picture (see here: http://www.oscars.org/ for a full list) I haven’t seen any of them. But that’s ok because really, at its core, the Academy Awards is a tad skewed.
“What did you say?” Oscar asked rearing his golden head in my direction.
“Yeah – That’s right!” I responded, “I said it.” In fact, I thought to myself as Oscar resumed his stance on that tiny little podium of his one really doesn’t have to see the film to guess what the outcome of the contest will be – no; all one has to do is think like the Academy voters think.
“Huh?” you may ask and an understandable question you pose Gentle Reader – once more, I am impressed.
Here… we will do the first one together. Empty your mind… Pretend that the only thing that you have to worry about is what you are going to wear on the red carpet… Put aside any thoughts of real world sensibilities or eking out a living. Stop. This is Hollywood. Back to our purpose… Think like a Academy voter… I must be progressive… Those whales won’t save themselves… How can I retrofit my third Hummer with an engine that burns bad reviews from bloggers or critics? …Ok. Ok… We’re there! All right, we are now ready to Celebrate the Arts and Sciences of Motion Pictures! Let us look at the first category, “Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role”.
Richard Jenkins in “The Visitor”
Frank Langella in “Frost/Nixon”
Sean Penn in “Milk”
Brad Pitt in “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”
Mickey Rourke in “The Wrestler”
You can eliminate Richard Jenkins and Brad Pitt from the list. Their performances were wonderful (I’m sure) but Jenkins is new to Oscar gold and Pitt is young (relatively). Jenkins is a great character actor and Pitt has his entire career ahead of them with solid and bankable pictures. That leaves three. Frank Langella might get it because he is the elder statesman of the pack. Sean Penn might take it because despite his edgy repute he is a great actor. Mickey Rourke might walk away with a statue because people like to route for the underdog and Rourke hasn’t been the lead horse in a race for a long time… The Academy voter will really be deciding between the oldie, the actor, or the outcast?
And the Oscar goes to…
There, now that wasn’t so hard was it? Of course it wasn’t.
“Why even do this?” you may ask. “Why is this worth all of my trouble? I mean I don’t even go to the movies.”
Yet another fair question and usually I would agree with anyone who didn’t like film to stay away from the Oscars at all costs. This year, however, thinking like the Academy thinks has its perks. You see two radio stations NJ 101.5 and SOJO 104.9, in conjunction with “Bayport on Lake Bay” is giving away a $300,000 “Luxury Townhome” in the “Atlantic City area’s Newest Waterfront Community”. So click here: http://www.oscars.org/awards/81academyawards/nominees.html for the official listing of the nominees for this years presentation, think how the Academy thinks, go over to the “Red Carpet Prediction Contest” (http://trentonoscars.pooltracker.com/awards/) enter, and make your choices known. If you win the waterfront townhouse in Atlantic City all I ask is that you have us (the Evil Chicken 5 – Me, Mother Hen and the Three Chicks) over for a BBQ once you get set up.
What can I say? I love BBQ.
I’m coming for YOU Oscar… and this time I’m bringing friends!