The Fourth Annual Andy Movie Awards – Part Two

When you waste this much time on a graphic, you have to re-use it
Welcome to part two of the Andy Movie Awards, filled with the major awards that people care about, and the lesser ones they sneak in between while the stars are off doing interviews and such. Don’t think of this as an overly long post stuffed with filler, think of it as 18 year end lists for the price of one!

To see part one, go here.

Best Actor in a Leading Role
The nominees are…

Daniel Day-Lewis for There Will Be Blood
Philip Seymour Hoffman for The Savages
Viggo Mortensen for Eastern Promises
Gordon Pinsent for Away from Her
Brad Pitt for The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

Really tough category to limit to five (maybe I should gone Golden Globes on this and nominated 7). I wish I had room for Josh Brolin in No Country for Old Men, Emile Hirsch in Into the Wild, or George Clooney in Michael Clayton, but alas, I did not. This is the category Philip Seymour Hoffman should’ve been nominated in, so here he is. Gordon Pinsent is the guy who’s been snubbed everywhere, while his co-star Julie Christie gets all the attention (deserved attention, but Pinsent should get his share too). It’s his reactions that centre the film, giving what I think was the second-best performance by a male lead of the year. The winner here is the same as it everywhere, Daniel Day-Lewis. It’s true that he goes big at the end of the movie, but he does so in memorable, and controlled fashion. Daniel Plainview doesn’t chew scenery for the whole movie, but rather it builds slowly, subtly, until he explodes for the memorable finale.

The award goes to…
Daniel Day-Lewis for There Will Be Blood

Best Visual Effects
The nominees are…
300
The Golden Compass
Spider-Man 3

Some might think I’m being petty not at least giving Transformers its due with a nomination here, but as impressive as the giant transforming robots were, I found plenty of failings in the visual effects, not the least of which was that it was often extremely difficult telling one robot apart from another in battle (that said, were this a five nominee category, I’d give it one then). I am Legend was another contender for this award, with the awe-inspiring opening of an empty New York City. But the creatures were pretty poorly done, so no nomination there. I think people forget how impressive The Sandman effects were in Spider-Man 3, choosing only to remember dancing Pete, but I don’t. I also thought the world created in The Golden Compass was very well done, particularly with the Ice Bears and daemons. But the most visually impressive movie of the year was easily 300, which I’m guessing was snubbed because A) it was an early in the year released, and B) people still don’t know what to do with largely green-screened films.

The award goes to…
300

Best Makeup
The nominees are…
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
La Vie en Rose
A Mighty Heart

I skipped out on two of the Academy’s nominees here, because even I’m not obsessed enough to watch terrible movies for their Makeup effects. I didn’t even think La Vie en Rose did a very good job ageing Marion Cotillard, but this wasn’t a makeup heavy year. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly did a very realistic job of making Mathieu Amalric look debilitated, and must’ve helped out in making all the women look good in the tight close-ups (along with Janusz Kaminski’s soft glow). I thought the makeup on Angelina Jolie was very convincing and not overdone. I get not wanting to set a precedent for giving out awards for new age blackface techniques, but I’m not that worried about my influence in these matters.

The award goes to…
A Mighty Heart

Best Actress in a Leading Role
The nominees are…

Julie Christie for Away from Her
Angelina Jolie for A Mighty Heart
Laura Linney for The Savages
Ellen Page for Juno
Keri Russell for Waitress

I’m actually pretty surprised that Angelina Jolie didn’t score a nomination here from the Academy, as the role was tailor-made for an Oscar nomination. Guess it was released too long ago. That, and their fetish for Queen Elizabeth I guess. Well, she did a good enough job to get a nomination here, albeit as the fifth nominee. Page and Russell cancel each other out, making this a battle between Christie and Linney. I’m going to go with Julie Christie here for her measured portrayal of an Alzheimer’s patient. Going big would’ve been the easy and standard way to go with the role, but instead, Christie impressed by staying within herself and maintaining the character’s dignity throughout.

The award goes to…
Julie Christie for Away from Her

Best Adapted Screenplay
The nominees are…
Paul Thomas Anderson for There Will Be Blood
Joel Coen and Ethan Coen for No Country for Old Men
Christopher Hampton for Atonement
Ronald Harwood for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
James Vanderbilt for Zodiac

The patriot in me really wanted to nominate Sarah Polley here for Away from Her, but there just wasn’t room. This is why I don’t like articles that talk about Oscar snubs without venturing out into discussing what nominated films they’d eliminate to make room for the snub. Sometimes very good work is edged out by five better works. This is a tough call this year, as I have to decide how much consideration to give to the idea of adaptation, and what to consider better when adapting: staying faithful to the original, or creating something new. By all accounts, the Coens were remarkably faithful to Cormac McCarthy’s original, while Paul Thomas Anderson loosely adapted There Will Be Blood from Upton Sinclair’s Oil!. Which is the more impressive feat? I’ve decided to go with the third option in Ronald Harwood for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, who adapted Jean-Dominique Bauby’s scant autobiography (it generally publishes at around 150 pages) into a full length feature of remarkable depth.

The award goes to…
Ronald Harwood for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

Best Original Screenplay
The nominees are…
Judd Apatow for Knocked Up
Brad Bird, Jan Pinkava, Jim Capobianco for Ratatouille
Tamara Jenkins for The Savages
Steven Knight for Eastern Promises
Nancy Oliver for Lars and the Real Girl

I’d be shocked if Diablo Cody didn’t win this award for Juno, but since I thought the writing was one of the film’s biggest problems, you won’t see it nominated here. You can practically see the writing at times in that movie, which is probably why it will win. If the award was MOST Original Screenplay, it’d have to go to Nancy Oliver for Lars and the Real Girl, a cute little movie that I saw largely because of its nomination in this category. But as far as best goes, it’s a battle between Brad Bird, et al and Tamara Jenkins, with my Ratatouille love once again winning out.

The award goes to…
Brad Bird, Jan Pinkava, Jim Capobianco for Ratatouille

Best Director
The nominees are…

Paul Thomas Anderson for There Will Be Blood
Joel and Ethan Coen for No Country for Old Men
Andrew Dominik for The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
David Fincher for Zodiac
Julian Schnabel for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

I was very close to putting Paul Greengrass for The Bourne Ultimatum on this list, but I couldn’t reconcile myself to leave any of these five directors off the list. So my favourite movie of the year gets no Andy Award nominations. Maybe it would have if I did Best Editing nominations. I also kind of wanted to give Joe Wright a nomination, since I’m puzzled as to how Atonement got an Best Picture Oscar nomination, yet he didn’t get a Best Director nomination. I know that every year one Best Picture nominee apparently directed itself to greatness, but Wright was the guy they snubbed? For that picture? It was a director-heavy picture, while Juno was an acting and writing heavy picture, so if they had to not nominate anyone, Jason Reitman seemed like the likely candidate. Oh well, neither gets a nomination here, as the Andy Award comes down to Julian Schnabel and the Coen Brothers. And the winner is…

The award goes to…
Joel and Ethan Coen for No Country for Old Men

Best Cinematography
The nominees are…
Roger Deakins for The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
Roger Deakins for No Country for Old Men
Robert Elswit for There Will Be Blood
Janusz Kaminski for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
Seamus McGarvey for Atonement

I have to go with the Academy’s five here, as they absolutely nailed it. Probably the most stacked category on the board. I wish I had room for Harris Savides for Zodiac or Eric Gautier for Into the Wild, but there simply isn’t room with those five gorgeously photographed pictures up there. My decision boils down to which Roger Deakins work I want to honour, and I’ll go with The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, as the cinematography really helped tell the story. The use of blurred shots helped enforce the theme of mythology, while the overall feel of uneasiness in the face of seeming tranquility set the tone of the film.

The award goes to…
Roger Deakins for The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

Best Picture
The nominees are…

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
No Country for Old Men
There Will Be Blood
Zodiac

This is the big award, and it’s always the one I have the least to say about, as by the time I write this, I’ve already reviewed each title, then explained why the rank in my year end top ten list, and probably said a few things about each movie in other categories, especially Best Director, which always synchs up with the nominees for Best Picture. The only question is if I go with the same winner, or if I split my vote to create a sort of tie, with one movie getting Best Picture and the other getting Best Director. I’ve done it before, but I’m not doing it here.

The award goes to…
No Country for Old Men

Well there you have it movie friends. Let’s do it again next year.

Related:
Inaugural Andy Movie Awards (2005)
Second Annual Andy Movie Awards (2006)
Third Annual Andy Movie Awards (2007)
Top 10 Movies for 2007

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6 thoughts on “The Fourth Annual Andy Movie Awards – Part Two

  1. Pingback: The Fourth Annual Andy Movie Awards - Part One « Critically Speaking

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