Early this morning the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the nominations for the 78th annual Oscars. In many ways I am happy with the nominations. I think Philip Seymour Hoffman in Capote, Joaquin Phoenix in Walk the Line, and David Straithairn in Good Night and Good Luck definitely deserved Oscar nods (it is interesting to note that all three also play historical figures in their movies--Truman Capote, Johnny Cash, and Edward R. Murrow respectively). As to the Best Actress nominations, it is good to see Keira Knightley get a nomination for Pride and Prejudice. I certainly cannot argue with Good Night and Good Luck and Crash being nominated for Best Picture. I think the nominees for Best Animated Feature are fairly solid (I honestly think Corpse Bride should win, but I suspect the winner will be Wallace & Gromit in the Curse of the Were-Rabbit). I am also very happy that Robert Altman is receiving the Lifetime Acheivement Award. He has always been one of my favourite directors.
That having been said, I am sorely disappointed that Peter Jackson's remake of King Kong was nominated only for technical awards. This is the best film of the year, in my humble opinion. It should have been nominated for Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Screenplay (or maybe Best Adapted Screenplay, given it is based on a previous movie--I don't know how they handle remakes...). Naomi Watts should have received a Best Actress nod for her role as Ann Darrow. For that matter, I think Star Wars III: Revenge of the Sith should have gotten a Best Picture nod, as well as Best Director and several other awards. As usual it seems to me that the Academy is snubbing genre films (I think the last one to win the Best Picture award was Silence of the Lambs). Of course, that does not explain why Walk the Line did not receive a Best Picture nomination. The movie seemed to be an odds on favourite to be nominated. And it seems to me that it could be more deserving of the honour than Munich,if nothing else for the performances of Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon.
Over all, beyond snubbing King Kong and Revenge of the Sith, I cannot complain too much about this year's Oscar nominations. Although I must say that ignoring the best movie of the year does tend to put a damper on my enthusiasm for the awards....
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