Oscar Picks

“Best Supporting Actress Kristin’s pick Who will win: Ruby Dee (American Gangster) This is 83-year-old Ruby Dee’s first Oscar nomination. With a long career and a good deal of respect in Hollywood, it’s going to be hard for the Academy to pass on the opportunity to give her a statue.”

Best Supporting Actress

Kristin’s pick

Who will win: Ruby Dee (American Gangster)

This is 83-year-old Ruby Dee’s first Oscar nomination. With a long career and a good deal of respect in Hollywood, it’s going to be hard for the Academy to pass on the opportunity to give her a statue. She also won the Golden Globe for this role, and it was quite the sentimental moment. Look for a repeat.

Who should win: Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone)

Hard-working actress Amy Ryan portrayed the mother of a missing girl in a film that was lost in the frenzy of a real-life abduction of a young girl. It’ll be hard to beat Dee on the sentimental nod, however. Stay tuned, though: Ryan will portray another grieving mother in this year’s The Changeling, which is directed by Hollywood favorite Clint Eastwood. Maybe she’ll get the nod again next year.

Ryan: While I commend Ryan for her brilliant turn as the mourning mother and feel she has earned a few brownie points from the head honchos of H-town, I have to say that Dee’s stunning performance in Scott’s Gangster as Mama Lucas earns her both the Should and Will win titles in my book.

Best Supporting Actor

Ryan’s pick

Who Will Win: Tom Wilkinson – For the big-wigs in Hollywood, it’s all about proving you deserve to be there (with the exception of Jennifer Hudson walking away with an unmerited win last year). Wilkinson’s put in his time and has entered the ring this year with a supercharged performance as Michael Clayton’s remorse-ridden attorney and is sure to walk away with Oscar gold.

Who Should Win: Javier Bardem – No one, and I mean no one (not even Jessica Simpson in Blonde Ambition) could inspire such gut-wrenching feelings as Bardem in No Country for Old Men. Inspiring fear and intimidation with such virtuoso (even despite that wig), Bardem blew me away.

Kristin: I half-agree with this pick as well. Javier Bardem will win, and should win. No Country for Old Men has to get something, and this is a safe bet, considering the competition in the other categories. Tom Wilkinson won’t get the sentimental nod in this category, because Michael Clayton will be taking home other honors.

Best Actress

Kristin’s pick

Who will win: Julie Christie (Away From Her)

Julie Christie is British, which seems to help. Her only downfall is that she already has an Oscar at home, since the Academy occasionally likes to surprise by giving an award to a first-timer. Not this time, though. Christie plays a woman whose Alzheimer’s pulls her away from her husband. Think The Notebook without Ryan Gosling.

Who should win: Ellen Page (Juno)

There are a few reasons why she won’t; Juno is an off-beat comedy, Page is young and she has many more chances to get that Oscar. She also uses the phrase pork swords. Kudos to the Academy for nominating her, in spite of that. If you haven’t seen Juno yet, hurry. You’re missing out.

Ryan: You’re right Kristin – she’s way too young … and inexperienced … and hasn’t kissed up nearly long enough to walk away with Oscar gold … but one could only hope. And while she does show promise of one day becoming one of the most decorated of actresses, I have to give this one to Marion Cotillard for her dazzling performance in La Mome (or the more well-known la Vie en Rose), a biopic on the life of singer Edith Piaf. While the film is gratuitously melodramatic, Cotillard soars above the maudlin mediocrity in an Oscar-worthy feat.

Best Actor

Ryan’s pick

Who Will Win: Daniel Day Lewis – Shoot. He’s Daniel Day Lewis. With his mesmerizing performance in There Will Be Blood that has already earned him BAFTA recognition for the Best Actor award, he’s a shoe in.

Who Should Win: Johnny Depp – After his freakin’ brilliant performances in Pirates, Finding Neverland and Sleepy Hollow, all leaving him relatively empty-handed, it’s about time Hollywood wakes up and gives credit where credit is due. No one could have pulled off Sweeny Todd better than our boy Depp.

Kristin: I agree that Daniel Day Lewis will likely win, but not so sure on the Johnny Depp call. I like Depp, don’t get me wrong, but you don’t win awards for being the perpetual bad boy, no matter how much we want that to be the case. Lewis will — and should — win. Even the previews of There Will Be Blood are mesmerizing. Lewis, however, might face some competition with Hollywood’s favorite son, George Clooney. However, Clooney might suffer from the bad taste he left in everyone’s mouth after his smug acceptance speech at the last Academy Awards ceremony.

Best Director:

Ryan’s pick

Who Will Win: Paul Thomas Anderson – He’s Hollywood’s golden boy – he’s got hits like Boogie Nights and Magnolia under his belt. He’s now brought us one of the most critically acclaimed and passionate films of the year with There Will Be Blood. Don’t you hate it when it’s all about how much butt you can kiss?

Who Should Win: While I commend the style of Jason Reitman and his exceptionally witty and impeccably directed Juno, I gotta give props to my boys, the Coen Brothers. With Fargo still ranking in my top 25 all time favorite movies, the Coens know how to skillfully craft some of the most intricate and exceptionally brilliant pieces of cinematography. Props.

Kristin: This pick is correct on both counts. I’d also love to see the Coen brothers take this award, but it won’t happen this year. Not with Daniel Day Lewis and There Will Be Blood on the ballot. This movie might be this year’s The Departed. I also have to give an honorable mention to Juno’s Jason Reitman. Juno will not get the credit it deserves, unfortunately, because of the company it is in this year. That’s a shame.

Best Motion Picture

Kristin’s pick

What will win: There Will Be Blood

This movie will likely be the golden child of the Oscars, and thus should take home this statue. It’s got some serious competition, of course, with some heavy hitters also getting the nod. One strike against it: the violence. Oh, and the fact it might sweep the other categories. All in all, it’s the likely champ.

What should win: No Country for Old Men

Unfortunately for Juno, wild popularity doesn’t translate into Oscar recognition. No Country for Old Men, an offering from the Coen brothers, is a major contender this year, and should get them another win. I’m not holding my breath, though.

Ryan: While I can see either one of those films settling into a confident run at the Best Picture award, I feel that another Oscar 1998 is on our hands. A decade ago, Oscar favorite Saving Private Ryan lost its title to the lighthearted and romantic Shakespeare in Love. I feel Atonement has the critical acclaim and momentum following its Golden Globe win and its BAFTA Honor as Best Film in both competitions.

Ah, but who knows? Those crafty ‘ole buggers over at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences always have a few surprises up their sleeves. (Ring a bell for you, Annie Proulx?) Tune in to the Oscars on Sunday!