February 24, 2009 APK
There are always a bunch of favorites that get nominated in several categories every year. This year was no different. Let's check out the favorites first. It's been the year of the writer, and the year of novel adaptations, biographies and period flicks.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - A quirky movie with a killer cast. Brad Pitt plays Button, who is born at the end of World War I with the body of an old man and grows younger with time. Add to that a love interest Daisy played by the lovely Cate Blanchett. The movie has been nominated in 13 categories and won 3 Oscars for Best Makeup, Best Visual Effects and Art Direction. The movie achieved BO success and has been nominated for technical and performance awards, including Best Motion Picture, Actor in a Leading role and Supporting Actress.
Doubt - Another Period Flick to make it to the top list this year.The captivating Merly Streep plays a nun who confronts the priest after she suspects him of mistreating thier first black student; religious drama, moral dilemma and changing times make this a compelling drama. Streep has obviously been nominated for Best Actress along with 4 other nominations. Streep has a total of 16 nominations at the Oscars in her career so far.
Milk - Another nomination for director Gus Van Sant after Good Will Hunting in 1997. Harvey Milk, played by Sean Penn, is the first openly gay man to be elected to office as a Superviser in California. The face of the emerging Gay Pride movement in the 70s, Milk was assasinated. Penn's portrayal won him an Oscar for Best Actor and a quip-how did he ever get all those jobs playing straight men?-from fellow Acedemy winner Robert Di Niro. Dustin Lance Black won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay; out of the 9 nominations the movie acquired 2 Oscars.
The Reader - An award-winning holocast novel by German judge Bernand is adapted into a movie with the same title and a front runner for the Oscars this year. Kate Winslet won the Acedemy for the Best Actress for her role as Hanna. The movie has 5 other nominations including Best Motion Picture, and is the last movie produced by Anthony Minghella and Sydney Pollock who passed away before the release. Nicole Kidman was considered for the role that won Kate an Acedemy but was passed over to the latter because Kidman was pregnant. Winslet is the youngest actress to recieve 6 nominations at the Oscars so far.
Changeling - A period movie based on a true story set in 1928 Los Angeles starring Angelina Jolie with motherhood as it's main theme (surprise, surprise) directed by Clint Eastwood. Revolutionary Road is based on a novel by Richard Yates set in 1955 about a young couple who move to Paris after they realize they are not leading the perfect life they thought they were (starring Oscar winner Kate Winslet). Both got 3 nominations each but did not take any home.
The Dark Knight - This Batman flick got commercial success and critical acclaim all over the world, and the late Heath Ledger has been praised for his portrayal as The Joker-and recieved the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. Ledger's family recieved the award on his behalf. Richard Nixon won the Oscar for Best Sound Editing making it 2 Oscars and 8 nominations for The Dark Knight.
Frost/Nixon - This movie about the battle of wits between former US President Richard Nixon and his interviewer David Frost recieved 5 Oscar nominations. After the Watergate scandal, the President was out of the office and remained silent till the breezy British anchor interviewed him. The direction, editing, screenplay, Frank Langella for Best Actor in a lead role and Best Motion Picture are all the categories in which the movie featured but won none.
Wall E - The futuristic animation movie about a robot named Wall E has won the Oscar for Best Animated Film (Andrew Stanton, Winner '03 Finding Nemo) and nominated for Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Music-Score and Music-Song.
Did we forget a movie here? Hmmm, what can it be? Let's think...
Slumdog Millionaire. Okay, so we'll avoid an overdose. Just a quick recap. The year of India (remember when it was all about New Zealand after Lord of the Rings and Hong Kong a while earlier...)