Oscar Pre-Game

Happy Saturday, b-rollers! After ten long months of film awards (okay, fine, like five; it felt longer), we’ve finally reached the pinnacle. I for one am fully prepped for tomorrow’s live blog: I have a working internet (for now, please God), a killer nachos recipe on tap, and my local Starbucks primed and ready to make me venti nonfat drinks throughout the day. By the time Giuliana Rancic and Ryan Seacrest hit the red carpet (along with their ensemble of fashion analysts from the Mad Hatter’s tea party), I will have the metabolism of a hummingbird. BRING IT.

Before then, here’s the plan: Today (now), we’ll do an analysis of “will win, should win, potential spoiler, should’ve been there” for the major categories. (The “potential spoiler” pick is my way of  being able to say “NAILED IT!!” if any shocking surprises happen, without being gutsy enough to actually predict them. I call this “The Romney.”) And tomorrow morning, I’ll post my guesses for all of the Oscar categories, some of which will be educated, others blind and completely random. (Hey, if you have an inside track on who’s going to win Sound Mix, then God bless.) Please feel free to share your picks there, too. And next week, we’ll compare notes and see how we did.

Ready? Let’s get started. (more…)

The Best Laid Plans…

Happy Friday, b-rollers. I had such a great plan for this week. Lots of in-depth Oscar talk, which I love (you may care less, we’ll agree to disagree). And then on Tuesday night, just as I was finishing my Voice recap, the internet access in my apartment went dead. After my roommate spent 42 endless minutes on the phone with our internet provider – highlighted by the operator suggesting that the issue was with our computers, to which my roommate replied, “You think both of our laptops simultaneously broke in the exact same way?” – an appointment was made for a technician to come on Thursday morning to fix it.

Now, here’s where this gets interesting.

The appointment was for 8-11am, so I waited by the phone, just in case our technician was the first person in the history of cable appointments to show up on the early end of their scheduled window. Stunningly, the phone rang at 8:15, and just to highlight the week that was in technological futility, the damn phone headset died, so I couldn’t answer the phone to tell the person that we were home; I could, however, hear the technician leaving a message that we should call to reschedule the appointment. In a blind panic, I threw on sneakers, grabbed my keys, sprinted down the street to the cable truck that was parked a block and a half away, and breathlessly yelled at the technician, “Pleasedon’tleaveourphonediedbutwe’rereallyhome.” Then, with a carefully attempted nonchalance, I calmly walked back to my apartment while ignoring all of the startled commuters who were wondering why this lunatic was strolling down 12th Street in her pajamas.

This is how badly I needed my internet back.

Anyway, I’m happy to report that our new modem is up and running, and internet access has been restored to Casa b-roll, but not before putting me way behind. I’ll post an Oscar preview tomorrow, and would love to see your Oscar picks as well; please share. And that Iron Man live blog on Oscar Sunday is on like Donkey Kong. Be there, folks.

The Grammy Performances

I thought about live-blogging the Grammys, b-rollers, I really did. When Nicki Minaj and Lady Gaga are attending in “clothing,” and Taylor Swift is “singing,” God knows there’s plenty of material. But I just couldn’t take the thought of five straight hours without a bathroom break (two weeks until the Oscars!), and how many times could I really type the phrase, “[Presenter/performer/winner] pays tribute to Whitney Houston” without it becoming redundant (bless her soul)? So instead, I took some notes on the live performances. Let’s play a game of “Will I buy this song on iTunes?”, shall we? Please note that I hardly ever listen to the radio and am wildly out of touch with what the kidz are listening to these days. This could go any number of ways. (more…)

SAG Awards Live Blog

7:45: Good evening, b-rollers! It’s 15 minutes to Go Time, if you have any interest in the SAG Awards. I’m skipping red carpet coverage tonight because there’s only so much Ryan Seacrest that one person can take in a lifetime, so instead, I’m watching the Pro Bowl. I’m a woman of many interests.

Let me tell you about my day: I planned to see Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, but was feeling too tired after a full day out yesterday (that involved seeing Shame – thoughts to come this week!), so instead I stayed lazy and watched several episodes of Law & Order (apparently today’s marathon theme was “deeply weird”), and then got sucked into the Lifetime movie The Pregnancy Pact (it was not good). I think we learned an important lesson today, b-rollers: Even though I will eventually see (and critique) Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, I am almost certainly not smart enough to understand it.

Anyway. Back shortly.

7:50: Hey, random thought while watching the Pro Bowl: You know how all of the players on each conference team wear the same color (NFC blue, AFC red), but they wear their own team’s helmet? (Well, you do now.) Do any players get upset if their team’s helmet clashes with the uniform? If I was a Cleveland Brown, I would be seriously upset by the ugliness of my orange helmet/red jersey combo. In retrospect, maybe I should be watching the red carpet.

7:58: T-minus 2 minutes. The SAGs always begin with that (occasionally awkward) “I am an actor!” spiel. Who’s your money on for best and worst “I am an actor!” moment, folks?

8:00: Revised: Nothing could be more awkward than this pun-happy voiceover woman telling Jesse Tyler Ferguson to “get his dance on” and Brad and Angelina to “have a fun time!” It’s all uphill from here.

8:04: Not many clunkers among the actor speeches this year, although this really makes you wish they broadcast the Writers Guild Awards, no?

8:05: Right into Best Supporting Actor! That’s the way to power onward, SAGs. Armie Hammer looks a little tense, probably anticipating some “Hey, how ’bout that pot bust?” questions. Maybe a little hair of the dog, Armie…

8:06: Christopher Plummer wins! Get used to that, people. That’s one category we can lock down right on through the Oscars.

8:07: I tweeted this a while back, but allow me to mention again: Right after the Golden Globes, I got a ton of traffic to my blog from people googling some variation of “Christopher Plummer’s nose.” (It’s still purple.) I’m filled with pride, people.


Fun Poll Question!

Good afternoon, b-rollers! Two quick things today: First of all, the SAG Awards are tomorrow evening, so of course I shall plan to live-blog them. Feel free to join in, if you give a good damn about the SAG Awards (and I honest-to-God can’t blame you if you don’t).

Secondly, I have a theory that I’m working on for a post. (I can’t tell you yet. Suspense.) But I’d like your opinions, to see how far off I am. So allow me to throw out the vaguest possible poll question: Who are your favorite actors, and why? And to get even more specific, what are your favorite film/TV performances? Past, present, whatever (and I’m using “actor” for brevity, but this includes both genders). Chime in, b-rollers. Please and thank you.

Oscar Nominations

Well, the Oscar nominations are in, b-rollers. Let me tell you when I had my “oh, hell, my Drive prediction is screwed” moment this morning: I was watching Today Show, and just before the nominations were announced their Oscar analyst mentioned that the average age of the Academy voters was around 60. (For the record, I don’t really know who this person is and am completely taking her word for it.)

But…that makes total sense, doesn’t it? Hello War Horse, Gary Oldman, Janet McTeer; goodbye Drive, Ryan Gosling, Michael Fassbender, Shailene Woodley.

Now, I’m not saying that these aren’t worthy nominees (well, War Horse notwithstanding). By all accounts, Oldman and McTeer are phenomenal. And Rooney Mara beat out Tilda Swinton for the fifth Best Actress spot, so yay for edgy. I just think it’s worth mentioning, since Twitter promptly burst into flames.

Anyway, let’s take a look at some of the other surprises, shall we? Chime in with your thoughts, too.

  • 9 Best Picture nominees! Holy hell. The only major surprise is Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, which I have not seen yet. I wrote a while ago that I really wanted to, but then the reviews came out and I gathered that everything that made Oskar (the kid) endearing and interesting in the book played as cloying and creepy onscreen. Most of the critics I like have responded with “what the hell?” reactions to this nomination, and yet now I feel obligated to see it. Dammit.
  • Speaking of obligated, I’ve moved The Tree of Life to the top of my Netflix queue. I’m 85% sure that I will be playing sudoku within the first 30 minutes. But onward.
  • On the Supporting Actor race: Which Academy member did Albert Brooks murder? Honest question. He was a frontrunner, wasn’t he? Like, a month ago? Wow. (I was 4/5 – Nick Nolte got Brooks’ spot.)
  • 4/5 on Supporting Actress, too (but I was damn close, saying it would come down to McTeer v. Woodley. Take that!). Also, a note on Melissa McCarthy’s nomination for Bridesmaids: I read approximately 692 tweets today with some variation of “You TOO can get an Oscar nomination for pooing in a sink!” Guys, let’s not whittle a really excellent comic performance down to its most basic, vulgar element. Grow up, please. If that’s all there was to it, Adam Sandler would be attending his 17th consecutive Oscar telecast.
  • Best Actor, well, this was not my year. Clooney, Dujardin, Pitt in; Gosling and Fassbender out in favor of Damien Bichir and Gary Oldman. My plan is to see Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and Shame this weekend, so I’ll be able to directly compare and contrast the Oldman-over-Fassbender decision then. Stay tuned.
  • I’m a little perturbed that only one song from The Muppets was nominated for “Best Original Song,” (“Man or Muppet”) and that there were only two nominees overall. How do you leave off “Life’s a Happy Song” and rob us of a Jason Segel/Amy Adams/ENTIRE MUPPET GANG production number?! This wound is deep, Oscar voters. Deep.

Okay, well, them’s my initial thoughts. What say you? (For the record, I officially went 25/34 of the categories I predicted. If I were a baseball player, you would find that batting average ridiculously impressive. And give me 214 million dollars.)

Oscar Predictions

Gracious good evening to you, b-rollers! The Oscar nominations are almost upon us, and so I bring you my official predix and reax. Won’t you reax in the comments below? (Sorry, I know that’s moronic. I’ll stop.)

Please note that I’m just talking about the big categories here, picture/acting/directing; I’m not in the loop or technologically astute enough to predict Best Sound Editing. But please feel free to do so if your hearing is better than mine.

Also, not to stall, but may I rant for a bit? I’d like to take a moment to discuss how, for this brief and shining moment, this is all kind of exciting and surprising; pretty soon, though, not so much. This endless awards season tends to iron out any of that pesky spontaneity, leaving us with a crisp, predictable Oscar telecast. Case in point: As much as I adore The Artist, it’s winning every award in reach, and the odds of it not tap-dancing away with the Best Picture prize are as likely as a professional NFL kicker missing a 32-yard field goal. (Too soon, Ravens fans? Sorry.) Anyway, my point is that if freshly-minted Golden Globers like George Clooney and Meryl Streep win a SAG Award this weekend, prepare yourselves for another charming, witty, rambling Oscar acceptance speech, rather than one of those, Oh my God, Adrien Brody won?! Wait, IS HE KISSING HALLE BERRY?!?!?! moments. Those days, I fear, are behind us.

Anywho, let’s get started.


Mea Culpa

Happy Sunday, b-rollers! I totally planned on bringing you my pre-Oscar nomination thoughts tonight, and I settled in to write as my beloved Patriots took on the Ravens for a trip to the Super Bowl. What a wonderful way to distract myself from the game so that I don’t get too nervous, I thought, completely forgetting that during Patriot playoff games I become anxious bordering on manic, and can only concentrate on repetitive and mindless things. So I played roughly 84 games of sudoku and ate a mountain of tortilla chips, but blogging, not so much.

(To give you an idea of how tense this game was, here’s the post-game exchange between me and my roommate.
Me: “We won! Ohmigod, it was heartstopping.”
Roomie: “But doesn’t that make it more fun?!”
Me: “No. Not at all.”
Roomie: “But it’s more exciting!”
Me: “No. I’ve lost three years of my life.”)

Anyway, I will make it up to you, I promise. I’ll be back tomorrow with my Oscar predictions and dream cast, and then on Tuesday with reactions to the actual nominees. Sound good? Awesome.

In the meantime, feel free to leave your good luck wishes to the Super Bowl-bound Patriots in the comments section. See you tomorrow.