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And the Oscar goes to…

By Tim Owens, By Tim Owens, and By Tim Owens

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I don’t know why I continue to do this. Every year, I fill out my Oscar ballot as if it actually means something. I know the score – Academy members don’t give a damn what I think – and they tick me off every year to prove it. But I’m not giving in.

So, in the spirit of rebellion, I offer my Oscar picks – the will-wins and should- wins. Without further adieu I quote the late Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight– ‘Aaaand here we go’hellip;’

Best Picture

‘bull;Will Win: Slumdog Millionaire

‘bull;Should Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Despite Benjamin Button’s leading tally of 13 nominations – the rag-to-riches story of a Mumbai teenager is the clear front-runner and odds-on favorite.
Slumdog has dominated this year’s awards season and its momentum continues to steamroll.

Best Director

‘bull;Will Win: David Fincher for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

‘bull;Should Win: Danny Boyle for Slumdog Millionaire

I really hope I’m wrong about this one. I detest when the Academy honors a director and not film he/she won for (think about it- it makes absolutely no sense). But I have a gut feeling that this will be the case this year. Boyle should win. Button will go mostly unnoticed Oscar night (despite its 13 noms). So, aside from dominating technical categories, Fincher’s win will serve as the most nominated film’s one moment in the spotlight.

Best Actor

‘bull;Will Win: Sean Penn for Milk

‘bull;Should Win: Sean Penn for Milk

I know, I know – all signs point to Mickey Rourke to win. But his moment in the sun was winning the Golden Globe. This time, the nomination is his award. Besides, Penn truly deserves this one. In Milk, Penn, one of the best actors of his, or any generation, delivers the best performance of his career.

Best Actress

‘bull;Will Win:
Kate Winslet for The Reader

‘bull;Should Win:
Anne Hathaway for Rachel Getting Married

The greatest actress of her generation will not be denied this year. With six nominations and zero wins, Winslet will finally be able to call herself an Academy Award winner.
However, this is the one time I’m not pulling for Winslet. Sorry, but Hathaway gave one of the best performances of 2008. And Hathaway will be here again – and it probably won’t be long from now.

Best Supporting Actor

‘bull;Will Win: Heath Ledger for The Dark Knight

‘bull;Should Win: Heath Ledger or Michael Shannon for Reservation Road

Oscar has only awarded one posthumous Oscar in its 81-year history (Peter Finch for Network in 1976). So, it would be no surprise to me that Oscar turned its back on Ledger’s performance. If the Academy chooses to piss off every nerd in the known universe, then they will probably turn to fist time nominee, Michael Shannon to take the award.

With only about 10 minutes of screen time, Shannon steals the entire film from his formidable costars- Leo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet. His performance defines what a supporting role is meant to be.

Best Supporting Actress

‘bull;Will Win: Penelope Cruz for Vicky Cristina Barcelona

‘bull;Should Win:
Viola Davis for Doubt

Penelope Cruz is nothing short of fantastic as fiery temptress, Maria Elena, in Barcelona. But anyone who stands toe-to-toe with Meryl Streep and only gets one scene to do it in is an Oscar winner in my book. Look for Davis’ win to be the surprise of the night.

Here’s a look at the rest of the races.

Best Animated Feature


Will Win:
Wall-E

Should Win:
Wall-E

*Should also have been a Best Picture nominee. Come on Academy – wise up!

Art Direction

Will Win: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Should Win:
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Cinematography

Will Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Should Win:
Slumdog Millionaire

Costume Design

Will Win: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Should Win: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Best Documentary Feature

Will Win: Man on Wire

Should Win: Man on Wire

*This is no-contest. Man on Wire was the best-reviewed film of 2008. It also should have been a Best Picture nominee.’

Best Documentary: Short Subject

Will Win: Honestly, no one watches these except for you – Academy voters. Just pick one!

Editing

Will Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Should Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Best Foreign Language Film

Will Win: The Class

Should Win: Waltz with Bashir

Makeup

Will Win: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Should Win:
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Original Score

Will Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Should Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Original Song

Will Win: ‘Jai Ho’ from Slumdog Millionaire

Should Win: ‘Down to Earth’ from Wall-E

Best Animated Short Film

Will Win: Presto

Should Win: Presto

*Good rule of thumb: Whenever Pixar is nominated for something – count on them winning.

Best Live Action Short Film

Who cares.

Sound Editing

Will Win: The Dark Knight

Should Win: Wall-E

Sound Mixing

Will Win: The Dark Knight

Should Win:
The Dark Knight

Visual Effects

Will Win: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Should Win: The Dark Knight

Adapted Screenplay

Will Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Should Win: Slumdog Millionaire

Original Screenplay

Will Win: Milk

Should Win: Milk

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The Independent Student Newspaper of Northern Kentucky University.
And the Oscar goes to…