Wednesday, April 27, 2011

If I Were An Academy Voter - 1999 Part 2

Best Art Direction
Academy Winner - Sleepy Hollow
My Pick - The Talented Mr. Ripley
Commentary - I actually preferred the costumes to the art direction of Sleepy Hollow, and much preferred the 1950's designs of The Talented Mr. Ripley. They perfectly captured the time frame and the film, and were varied enough (unlike the similar and bleak sets of Sleepy Hollow), to really catch your eye.

Best Cinematography
Academy Winner/My Pick - American Beauty
Commentary - I was thrilled when the Academy chose this over more obvious choices. For a family drama centered in suburbia, the movies so beautifully shot, with enhanced colors, perfect light angles, all really adding depth to an otherwise "untechnical" type film.

Best Costume Design
Academy Winner - Topsy-Turvy
My Pick - Sleepy Hollow  
Commentary- Like I said, I much preferred the costumes of Sleepy Hollow, the hollow (no pun intended) pastels really popped well against the dreary art direction and cinematography. Also, while I am a fan of Mike Leigh, I never really got into Topsy-Turvy. Not a bad movie by any means, just not one of my personal favorites.

Best Film Editing
Academy Winner - The Matrix
My Pick - The Insider
Commentary - This may seem random, but I really did like The Insider, and it was the most taut and sharp film of the bunch.

Best Makeup
Academy Winner/My Pick - Topsy-Turvy.
Commentary - I know what I just said, but the makeup design in Topsy-Turvy was top notch, and more importantly the other four films are simply not good enough to merit an Academy Award.

Best Original Score
Academy Winner - John Corigliano "The Red Violin"
My Pick - Thomas Newman "American Beauty"
Commentary - I thought The Red Violin was boring as hell, and while its score was good, I much preferred Thomas Newman's score for American Beauty, which effortlessly moved from the lighter to the darker moments, and captured the emotion of the film.

Best Original Song
Academy Winner - Phil Collins "You'll Be in My Heart" from "Tarzan"
My Pick - Trey Parker and Marc Shaiman "Blame Canada" from "South Park: Bigger, Longer, & Uncut"
Commentary - Sorry to Phil, but Blame Canada was one of the funniest songs I had ever heard, and perfectly captured the zany and outrageous tone of the South Park movie. Plus Tarzan was way behind its Disney counterparts.

Best Sound Mixing
Academy Winner/My Pick - The Matrix
Commentary - By today's standards, The Matrix is a thing of the past, but like Star Wars before, and Avatar after it, it was a film that revolutionized film making, particularly in the areas of sound and visual effects.

Best Sound Editing
Academy Winner - The Matrix
My Pick - Fight Club
Commentary - In terms of the best, The Matrix deserved to win. But Fight Club was one of the best films of the last decade, and it deserves something, even if it is just a sound award.

Best Visual Effects
Academy Winner/My Pick - The Matrix
Commentary - See Sound Mixing.

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