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02/28/2004 Archived Entry: "And the winner might be..."
Posted by CKL @ 01:05 AM PST

So, after watching Seabiscuit on DVD last night, I've now seen all of this year's Best Picture and Best Animated Feature nominees. I still think the latter category is a dumb idea, but that's another rant.

I thought all five Best Picture nominees were good movies, albeit very different. Which one wins is, IMHO, really going to come down to whether the voters collectively prefer an action epic (LoTR:RotK or Master and Commander), a sports movie (Seabiscuit), a drama (Mystic River), or Lost in Translation, which defies easy categorization. What is the national zeitgeist? What does Hollywood care about right now? Damned if I know.

I think any one of these films is worthy of a Best Picture Academy Award, but if I had to pick, I'd probably go with Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World. I can't remember the last time I went into a movie knowing so little about it, and found it so enthralling. I mean, I'm not a huge Russell Crowe fan, I don't know anything about sailing, and I think the history of the British Navy is pretty boring except for Commander James Bond. But this story was, to mix metaphors, firing on all cylinders, as I've said before.

In any case, it definitely wins the Longest Freakin URL Award: www.masterandcommanderthefarsideoftheworld.com

I guess Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is the odds-on favorite to take the big prize on Sunday, especially since pundits expect many voters to acknowledge the entire trilogy by honoring the last part; now or never and all that jazz. I can live with that. But there ain't no justice if Mystic River doesn't clean up the Best Supporting acting awards for Tim Robbins and Marcia Gay Harden (Sorry, Sean Penn, Best Actor should go to Bill Murray or Johnny Depp), and Lost in Translation really deserves better than to be the relative runt of the litter. No huge battles, no histrionic death scenes, not even a stupid pet trick in sight, but it's almost indescribably wonderful, all the more marvelous because it finds the profound in the mundane.

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