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Snap Judgment: The 2009 Oscar Nominations

  • OK, just for the record: I liked The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. I did. I didn't think it was the best movie of the year, and I still don't, but it was definitely a good film. So now that I've got that out of the way, 13 nominations? Thirteen? I think that seems like a little much.
  • However: I will absolutely not argue with any of the technical nominations (though does putting an aged Brad Pitt face on a tiny old-man-baby body fall more under makeup, editing, or visual effects?) or with Taraji P. Henson's Best Supporting Actress nod. The more I think about it, her performance might have been my favorite in the whole film.
  • The Golden Globes snub had me worried, but I'm glad to see Milk among the Best Picture contenders. Well-deserved, as far as I'm concerned.

For more of my thoughts,


  • Overall, all the movies I wished would get nominated at least got something, even if it wasn't always the thing I had hoped for. I'm glad Happy-Go-Lucky got nominated in the screenplay category, but I would have loved to see Sally Hawkins get recognized for her performance. And while Anne Hathaway's performance in Rachel Getting Married was practically a lock, I would have liked to see some love for it in the writing or directing categories, too.
  • Also of note: Wall-E basically getting the Ratatouille treatment, with nominations for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Screenplay but not breaking into the Best Picture category. Sigh.
  • Interestingly, all four main actors from Doubt are nominated for Oscars, but I have some doubts (Ha. Ha.) that any of them will win.
  • This song category? Baffling to me. I love the Slumdog Millionaire soundtrack, and the song from Wall-E was . . . a Disney song. But where's Bruce Springsteen for The Wrestler? Heck, where's that Miley Cyrus song from Bolt? I'd like some variety and more than three nominees, please!
  • Back to Benjamin Button for a sec. . . I'm not surprised to see Eric Roth's screenplay nominated in the adaptation category, but honestly: All he took from F. Scott Fitzgerald's short story was the name "Benjamin Button" and the idea of aging in reverse. Maybe it's adapted from Forrest Gump?
  • After years of love for Richard Jenkins, I'm so thrilled to see him nominated for The Visitor. He's always been a great "hey, it's that guy!" but how lovely that a starring turn could bring him Oscar recognition!
  • Speaking of happy Oscar recognition, I'm definitely on board with the nomination for Michael Shannon's performance in Revolutionary Road. Kate and Leo are great in their roles, but Shannon adds this electricity to the entire film and I think it would be a completely different thing without him.
  • I know many people think it's just a given that Heath Ledger will posthumously take the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. . . but what if he doesn't? It's interesting to think about. Would there be outrage? Or would people be satisfied to know that Ledger didn't get the "sympathy vote"?
  • "The Oscar-nominated Tropic Thunder!" Who ever thought we'd be saying that?
  • Crackpot theory o' the day: Slumdog Millionaire, which was just behind Benjamin Button with 10 nominations, stood a better chance of winning big at the Golden Globes because the Hollywood Foreign Press might be more inclined to recognize a "world" movie, while the Oscars might lean toward rewarding Benjamin Button because it's more a classic, American/European ideal of a film. Discuss.


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