I’m really hoping for some surprises on Oscar night if only to make things interesting, but it’s looking less likely every day. Last night The Artist nearly swept the British Academy Film Awards (essentially the British Oscars), taking home the prizes for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Original Screenplay, Best Music, Best Cinematography, and Best Costume Design. Meryl Streep was named Best Actress for The Iron Lady, while Octavia Spencer and Christopher Plummer won Best Supporting Actress and Actor. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy wasn’t sent home empty-handed, as the spy thriller won Best British Film and Best Adapted Screenplay. I was happy to see Senna get some well-deserved recognition, as the Formula 1 doc chronicling the life of driver Ayrton Senna was named Best Documentary.
While George Clooney seemed the favorite in the Best Actor Oscar race for his magnificent turn in The Descendants, The Artist’s Jean Dujardin could easily prove the spoiler. With the SAG Award in hand and now the BAFTA, the French comedian may very well step up to the podium come Oscar night. Hit the jump to see the full list of BAFTA winners. The Academy Awards will be handed out on February 26th.
The nominations for the 84th Annual Academy Awards have finally been unveiled. Many of the categories have fallen in line just as most have predicted (I fared alright with my predictions, but not great), with Hugo scoring 11 nods, followed closely by The Artist with 10. The biggest surprises are War Horse and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close getting in for Best Picture, the exclusion of The Adventures of Tintin from Best Animated Feature, and The Tree of Life nabbing Best Picture and Best Director nods (hooray!). On the snub side of things, despite landing the most precursor critics awards of any other actor in the race thus far, Albert Brooks was denied a Best Supporting Actor nod for his stellar work in Drive (boo). Additionally, Tilda Swinton was overlooked for giving the best performance of the year in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and AMPAS has no love for Michael Fassbender‘s haunting work in Shame.
There’s still plenty to be happy about, as Gary Oldman has his first ever Oscar Nomination (yes, that’s right) and Melissa McCarthy is a Best Supporting Actress nominee. Hit the jump to check out the full list of nominees. The 84th Academy Awards will be presented by Billy Crystal on February 26th.
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is a crackling, intense, complex, old-fashioned spy-thriller…but you need to wait over an hour to get there. Director Tomas Alfredson does a fantastic job of painting a rich 1970s setting that swings between London, France, Istanbul, and Budapest, but we have trouble getting our bearings as we jump across timelines and struggle to understand the wide cast of characters. Terrific performances begin to peek out and try to surface but are smothered in an overdone attempt to obfuscate rather than intrigue. Alfredson wants to put us inside the web of confusion of trying to uncover the truth, but he strings us along for too long. At some point, the spy game must begin.