Commentary - This razzle-dazzle musical may have not struck the right chord with everyone. But for me it was an exuberant musical, with an incredible cast, incredible technicals, a wonderful screenplay from Bill Condon, and a playlist that had audience toe-tapping for weeks after. Some people believe that it shouldn't have won, but I guess enough people agreed with me.
Academy Winner/My Pick - Roman Polanski "The Pianist"
Commentary - I was going back and forth between Polanski and Marshall, but in the end I think the Academy made the right decision. While The Pianist was no Tess or Chinatown or Rosemary's Baby, and Polanski is a child molester, I think that this was the perfect year to give him the Oscar he deserved. Marshall was too young and had yet to prove himself, and while Polanski is a criminal, he makes damn good movies.
Academy Winner/My Pick - Adrien Brody "The Pianist"
Commentary - The other four were previous winners, and Brody was devastatingly brilliant in The Pianist, so the Academy made the right choice.
Academy Winner - Nicole Kidman "The Hours"
My Pick - Julianne Moore "Far From Heaven"
Commentary - I like Nicole Kidman, but the Academy really missed the boat on this one. Julianne Moore was leagues above the other nominees in Far From Heaven. The devastated and embarrased wife, that rises to her own strength. She should be Academy Award Winner Julianne Moore. Oh well.
Best Supporting Actor
Academy Winner/My Pick - Chris Cooper "Adaptation"
Commentary - Chris Cooper was hilarious, wild and wacky, and absolutely pitch perfect considering Kaufman's incredibly strange script. I'm glad the Academy took notice.
Best Supporting Actress
Academy Winner - Catherine Zeta-Jones "Chicago"
My Pick - Queen Latifah "Chicago"
Commentary - I liked Catherine, but in my opinon, the best supporting actress from Chicago was actually her nominated co-star Queen Latifah. The energy, sexiness, and suave she brought to the role of Big Mama Thorton overshadowed Zeta-Jones, which was a tough task to do.
Best Animated Feature
Academy Winner/My Pick - Spirited Away
Commentary - Awesome pick my the Academy, as this was one of the few anime films that I actually enjoyed, probably because it was impeccable.
Academy Winner - Ronald Harwood "The Pianist"
My Pick - Bill Condon "Chicago"
Commentary - I know this one may piss some people off. But I thought that Condon's job of adapting a stage musical, juggling all those characters, and going in and out from the stage world to the real world, was much more difficult, and he pulled it off. Plus, personally, I am a huge Bill Condon fan, so there is a little bit of bias.
Best Foreign Language Film
Academy Winner - Nowhere in Africa
My Pick - Hero
Commentary - Hero was brilliant, and while I like Nowhere in Africa, it paled in comparison to Jet-Li's martial arts masterpiece.
Best Documentary Feature
Academy Winner/My Pick - Bowling For Columbine
Commentary - One of the most shocking films I had ever watched, it literally left me breathless with its incredible sadness, poignant realism, and incredible filmmaking. Love or hate Michael Moore, he scored a winner with this one.