72nd Academy Awards (1999): Commentary

The 72nd Academy Awards (1999): Commentary

Picture

My Predictions

  • American Beauty – Bruce Cohen, Dan Jinks
  • Being John Malkovich
  • The Insider – Pieter Jan Brugge, Michael Mann
  • Magnolia – Paul Thomas Anderson, Joanne Sellar
  • The Sixth Sense

Oscar Nominees

  • American Beauty – Bruce Cohen, Dan Jinks
  • The Cider House Rules – Richard N. Gladstein
  • The Green Mile – David Valdes
  • The Insider – Pieter Jan Brugge, Michael Mann
  • The Sixth Sense
My take on the nominations:
Miramax strikes again. I had suspected it might get nominated awhile back, but foolishly changed my tune thinking it hadn’t received enough box office…silly me. This isn’t bad of a list and nothing that truly leaps out as surprising. Cider House and Green Mile both ended up in my 5 possible spoilers. The Producers Guild predicted Cider House, but missed Green Mile and Sixth Sense.

Actor

My Predictions

  • Jim Carrey – Man on the Moon
  • Russell Crowe – The Insider
  • Richard Farnsworth – The Straight Story
  • Kevin Spacey – American Beauty
  • Denzel Washington – The Hurricane

Oscar Nominees

  • Russell Crowe – The Insider
  • Richard Farnsworth – The Straight Story
  • Sean Penn – Sweet and Lowdown
  • Kevin Spacey – American Beauty
  • Denzel Washington – The Hurricane
My take on the nominations:
Carrey’s non-nomination makes the Academy look like a bunch of ad-influencable old fogeys. Penn isn’t a surprise, considering the number of ads taken out on his and Samantha Morton’s behalf. Still not a surprise. SAG really screwed up this year only predictin three of the nominees..

Actress

My Predictions

  • Annette Bening – American Beauty
  • Janet McTeer – Tumbleweeds
  • Julianne Moore – The End of the Affair
  • Hilary Swank – Boys Don’t Cry
  • Sigourney Weaver – A Map of the World

Oscar Nominees

  • Annette Bening – American Beauty
  • Janet McTeer – Tumbleweeds
  • Julianne Moore – The End of the Affair
  • Meryl Streep – Music of the Heart
  • Hilary Swank – Boys Don’t Cry
My take on the nominations:
Two days before the nominations, I had considered changing Weaver out for Streep, but decided against it. Though, it was completely predictable, mirroring the SAG awards easily..

Supporting Actor

My Predictions

  • Michael Caine – The Cider House Rules
  • Tom Cruise – Magnolia
  • Michael Clarke Duncan – The Green Mile
  • Haley Joel Osment – The Sixth Sense
  • Christopher Plummer – The Insider

Oscar Nominees

  • Michael Caine – The Cider House Rules
  • Tom Cruise – Magnolia
  • Michael Clarke Duncan – The Green Mile
  • Jude Law – The Talented Mr. Ripley
  • Haley Joel Osment – The Sixth Sense
My take on the nominations:
Law’s nomination is a welcome treat, but Plummer seemed sure of a nomination after being ignored by other groups, but not critics. SAG came close, missing only Law..

Supporting Actress

My Predictions

  • Cameron Diaz – Being John Malkovich
  • Angelina Jolie – Girl, Interrupted
  • Catherine Keener – Being John Malkovich
  • Julianne Moore – Magnolia
  • Chloe Sevigny – Boys Don’t Cry

Oscar Nominees

  • Toni Collette – The Sixth Sense
  • Angelina Jolie – Girl, Interrupted
  • Catherine Keener – Being John Malkovich
  • Samantha Morton – Sweet and Lowdown
  • Chloe Sevigny – Boys Don’t Cry
My take on the nominations:
Again, no surprises, though Moore’s exclusion indicates the Academy DOESN’T want to honor her after screwing her over for Boogie Nights. SAG missed both Collette and Morton..

Director

My Predictions

  • Paul Thomas Anderson – Magnolia
  • Norman Jewison – The Hurricane
  • Michael Mann – The Insider
  • Sam Mendes – American Beauty
  • M. Night Shyamalan – The Sixth Sense

Oscar Nominees

  • Lasse Hallstrom – The Cider House Rules
  • Spike Jonze – Being John Malkovich
  • Michael Mann – The Insider
  • Sam Mendes – American Beauty
  • M. Night Shyamalan – The Sixth Sense
My take on the nominations:
Hallstorm is not one of those directors you expect, but with Miramax behind him, how could he not get nominated. Jones’ nomination feels pointless. The DGA merely switched Darabont for Green Mile for Hallstrom..

Original Screenplay

My Predictions

  • All About My Mother – Pedro Almodovar
  • American Beauty – Alan Ball
  • Being John Malkovich – Charlie Kaufman
  • Magnolia – Paul Thomas Anderson
  • The Sixth Sense – M. Night Shyamalan

Oscar Nominees

  • American Beauty – Alan Ball
  • Being John Malkovich – Charlie Kaufman
  • Magnolia – Paul Thomas Anderson
  • The Sixth Sense – M. Night Shyamalan
  • Topsy-Turvy – Mike Leigh
My take on the nominations:
Topsy-Turvy did win the New York Film Critics Award, so its inclusion isn’t surprising. Pedro Almodovar has a lot of experience left to gain according to the Academy and apparently Three Kings, the WGA nominee over Turvy, wasn’t liked well enough to get this or any other nomination. The Academy does appare to like Mike Leigh..

Adapted Screenplay

My Predictions

  • The Cider House Rules – John Irving (Also Novel)
  • Election – Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor (Novel: Tom Perrotta)
  • Eyes Wide Shut – Stanley Kubrick, Frederic Raphael (Novel: Arthur Schnitzler)
  • The Insider – Eric Roth, Michael Mann (Article: Marie Brenner)
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley – Anthony Minghella (Novel: Patricia Highsmith)

Oscar Nominees

  • The Cider House Rules – John Irving (Also Novel)
  • Election – Alexander Payne, Jim Taylor (Novel: Tom Perrotta)
  • The Green Mile – Frank Darabont (Novel: Stephen King)
  • The Insider – Eric Roth, Michael Mann (Article: Marie Brenner)
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley – Anthony Minghella (Novel: Patricia Highsmith)
My take on the nominations:
Not a surprise, though not to acknowledge Kubrick for his last film makes the Academy look hollow and petty. It could also be contributed to Warner Brothers’ lack of campaign push for the film. October Sky was the WGA nominee instead of The Green Mile. Darabont is apparently only liked as a writer and not a director..

Foreign Film

My Predictions

  • All About My Mother – Spain
  • The Cup – Bhutan
  • East-West – France
  • Rosetta – Belgium
  • Three Seasons – Vietnam

Oscar Nominees

  • All About My Mother – Spain
  • Caravan – Nepal
  • East-West – France
  • Solomon and Gaenor – United Kingdom
  • Under the Sun – Sweden
My take on the nominations:
What can one say, the Foreign Film category isn’t easy to predict, though All About My Mother and the French nominee were the only ones that had a real shot without any trouble. Nepal is surprising, but the UK and Sweden are not..

Original Song

My Predictions

  • “Beautiful Stranger” – Austin Powers 2
  • “Music of My Heart” – Music of the Heart
  • “Save Me” – Magnolia
  • “When She Loved Me” – Toy Story 2
  • “You’ll Be In My Heart” – Tarzan

Oscar Nominees

  • “Blame Canada” – South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut
  • “Music of My Heart” – Music of the Heart
  • “Save Me” – Magnolia
  • “When She Loved Me” – Toy Story 2
  • “You’ll Be In My Heart” – Tarzan
My take on the nominations:
Apparently the music branch, upset that South Park was not allowed to compete by its officials, the film HAD to have a song nominee and it came in the form of “Blame Canada” and not “Mountain Town” or “What Would Brian Boitano Do?” Apparently the Academy still doesn’t like Madonna-written…just ones she sings without writing..

Original Score

My Predictions

  • American Beauty – Thomas Newman
  • Angela’s Ashes – John Williams
  • The Red Violin – John Corigliano
  • Sleepy Hollow – Danny Elfman
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley – Gabriel Yared

Oscar Nominees

  • American Beauty – Thomas Newman
  • Angela’s Ashes – John Williams
  • The Cider House Rules – Rachel Portman
  • The Red Violin – John Corigliano
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley – Gabriel Yared
My take on the nominations:
While Cider House’s nomination might seem surprising, when you look at the Miramax factor and the Rachel Portman, surprise winner for Emma, factor. She seems to be the most popular female composer in recent history..

Film Editing

My Predictions

  • American Beauty – Tariq Anwar, Chris Greenbury
  • The Insider – William Goldenberg, Paul Rubell
  • The Matrix
  • The Sixth Sense – Andrew Mondshein
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley

Oscar Nominees

  • American Beauty – Tariq Anwar, Chris Greenbury
  • The Cider House Rules – Lisa Zeno Churgin
  • The Insider – William Goldenberg, Paul Rubell
  • The Matrix
  • The Sixth Sense – Andrew Mondshein
My take on the nominations:
Again, the Miramax factor…what can you do? Cider House was no where to be seen in the ACE nominations, neither Drama nor Comedy..

Cinematography

My Predictions

  • American Beauty – Conrad L. Hall
  • The Insider – Dante Spinotti
  • Sleepy Hollow – Emmanuel Lubezki
  • Snow Falling on Cedars – Robert Richardson
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley – John Seale

Oscar Nominees

  • American Beauty – Conrad L. Hall
  • The End of the Affair – Roger Pratt
  • The Insider – Dante Spinotti
  • Sleepy Hollow – Emmanuel Lubezki
  • Snow Falling on Cedars – Robert Richardson
My take on the nominations:
Interesting…very interesting. Probably the most surprising of ALL of the nominations this year and it’s not even THAT surprising. The ASC thought Sixth Sense had better cinematography than End of the Affair..

Art Direction/Set Decoration

My Predictions

  • American Beauty – ?; ?
  • Anna and the King – Luciana Arrighi, John Ralph; Ian Whittaker
  • Sleepy Hollow – Ken Court; Peter Young
  • Titus – Dante Ferretti; ?
  • Topsy-Turvy

Oscar Nominees

  • Anna and the King – Luciana Arrighi, John Ralph; Ian Whittaker
  • The Cider House Rules – David Gropman; Beth A. Rubino
  • Sleepy Hollow – Ken Court; Peter Young
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley – Roy Walker; ?
  • Topsy-Turvy
My take on the nominations:
Miramax…Miramax…Miramax…Mr. Ripley? Who knows why they chose it, but they did. No Titus (majorly surprising) or American Beauty (not at all surprising). Perhaps American Beauty isn’t as popular with voters as we thought, but this isn’t much of a category to influence Picture. The Art Directors Guild had a horrible year predicting only Anna and the King and Sleepy Hollow, picking American Beauty, Matrix and Titus over Cider House, Mr. Ripley and Topsy-Turvy..

Costume Design

My Predictions

  • Anna and the King – Jenny Beavan
  • The Emperor and the Assassin – Qiuping Huang, Mo Xiaomin
  • Sleepy Hollow – Colleen Atwood
  • Star Wars: Episode I – Trisha Biggar
  • Topsy-Turvy

Oscar Nominees

  • Anna and the King – Jenny Beavan
  • Sleepy Hollow – Colleen Atwood
  • The Talented Mr. Ripley – Ann Roth
  • Titus – Milena Canonero
  • Topsy-Turvy
My take on the nominations:
No Emperor, no big deal. No Star Wars, oh well. Mr. Ripley, why? Titus, ok. Costume Designers Guild winner Sleepy Hollow and Mr. Ripley are the ONLY choices made that reflect the above nominations..

Makeup

My Predictions

  • Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me
  • Life
  • Topsy-Turvy

Oscar Nominees

  • Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me
  • Bicentennial Man
  • Life
  • Topsy-Turvy
My take on the nominations:
Surprising that they have four choices instead of the usual three and Blast From the Past is easily the one to leave out..

Sound

My Predictions

  • American Beauty
  • The Matrix
  • The Sixth Sense
  • Sleepy Hollow
  • Star Wars: Episode I

Oscar Nominees

  • The Green Mile
  • The Insider
  • The Matrix
  • The Mummy
  • Star Wars: Episode I
My take on the nominations:
Originally The Mummy was a key figure on my list, but I removed it…it happens. Green Mile is not surprising, but Insider is to an extent. Usually a best picture nominee winds up here, but American Beauty would have been the odds-on favorite, since it is the nomination leader. The Cinema Audio Society matched these twice with Matrix and Star Wars, but not American Beauty, Any Given Sunday and The Sixth Sense.

Sound Effects Editing

My Predictions

  • Fight Club
  • The Matrix
  • Star Wars: Episode I

Oscar Nominees

  • Fight Club
  • The Matrix
  • Star Wars: Episode I
My take on the nominations:
Wow…I got a category right? Why here? Ah well, no surprise whatsoever. All three are nominees for the Motion Picture Sound Editors award, along with a whole gaggle of others..

Visual Effects

My Predictions

  • The Matrix
  • The Mummy
  • Star Wars: Episode I

Oscar Nominees

  • The Matrix
  • Star Wars: Episode I
  • Stuart Little
My take on the nominations:
Again, a case of, I should have known better, but didn’t change it in the end. Stuart Little is definitely not surprising..

Documentary

My Predictions

  • American Movie
  • Buena Vista Social Club
  • Mr. Death: The Rise and Fall of Fred Leuchter Jr.
  • Smoke & Mirrors: A History of Denial
  • Speaking in Strings

Oscar Nominees

  • Buena Vista Social Club
  • Genghis Blues
  • On the Ropes
  • One Day in September
  • Speaking in Strings
My take on the nominations:
Being the first year I’ve been able to attemp predictions in this and the Short Film categories, I’ve done pretty well. I don’t worry about surprises in these categories, because the Academy is notorious for overlooking the most popular choices. Buena Vista is hands-down the favorite…it is Wim Wenders, after all..

Animated Short Film

My Predictions

  • The Indescribable Nth
  • The Old Man and the Sea
  • The Phox, the Box and the Lox
  • Silence
  • Village of Idiots

Oscar Nominees

  • Humdrum
  • My Grandmother Ironed the King’s Shirts
  • The Old Man and the Sea
  • Three Misses
  • When the Day Breaks
My take on the nominations:
Enh…can’t win them all. If I had known Humdrum was from Aardman, I probably would have included it…they are the ones behind Nick Park’s 4 Oscar nominations and 3 wins..

Live-Action Short Films

My Predictions

  • Cirque du Soleil – Journey of Man
  • The Dance of Shiva
  • Killing Joe
  • Mutual Love Life
  • My Mother Dreams The Satan’s Disciples in New York

Oscar Nominees

  • Bror, Min Bror (Teis and Nico)
  • Killing Joe
  • Kleingold (Small Change)
  • Major and Minor Miracles
  • My Mother Dreams The Satan’s Disciples in New York
My take on the nominations:
Sometimes you can pick the choice by the title, sometimes not. Satan’s Disciples was one of those cases.