Well, good news: I won the pool. Even though I only managed to predict 15 out of the 24 categories, that still put me comfortably in line for the gold. The runner up was Peracchio, who had the misfortune to predict The Queen as Best Picture. Sucker. You can click over and read his thoughts on the matter, which are pretty similar to mine: how the heck did some of those films win?
Let's look over the scoreboard.
I correctly nailed Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Supporting Actress. So out of the six big categories, the only one I missed was Best Supporting Actor, and I don't care about that because I was rooting for Alan Arkin to win it, I just didn't think he had a chance.
I also correctly nailed Best Original Screenplay, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Score, Visual Effects, Sound Mixing, Documentary, Short Film (live action), Make-Up, Costume Design, and Art Direction. Not a bad night out. Here's where I went wrong:
Animated Feature Film: That overlong Coke commercial, Happy Feet, beat out Cars. I guess people really do love penguins.
Animated Short: The winner was a Dutch film named "The Danish Poet." It looked impossibly dull, compared to Disney's flashback to better times "The Little Matchgirl." On the other hand, I don't care a smidgen about animated shorts.
Cinematography: Pan's Labyrinth is a fine choice, it's a beautifully shot piece of cinema. But Children of Men absolutely deserved this award. Remember, the American Society of Cinematographers named this film "Best Picture."
Documentary (Short Subject): The winner was "The Blood of Yingzhou District," a short about the effect of AIDS in China. I should've done more research on this one, because as soon as I saw a clip of "Recycled Life" when they were announcing the nominees, I said "wow, that's terribly shot." It's also generally unwise to root against movies about the effect of AIDS in foreign countries. Wow, I really shoulda done more research on this one.
Film Editing: I was hoping that there would be collective sympathy for the mostly non-nominated United 93. There was none. I forgot that Best Picture winners usually take this category, and I chose The Departed for Best Picture, so why not for Best Editing? Also, United 93 was cut by three different people, while The Departed was cut by only one, and the Academy tends to honor that. And finally, Thelma Schoonmaker, who edited The Departed, won two years prior for her work on The Aviator, which I felt was a terribly shoddy piece of cutting. So why shouldn't she win for The Departed, a crisp and inventive bit of film editing?
I should of seen this one coming a very long ways away.
Foreign Language Film: The Academy acknowledged Pan's Labyrinth in three different categories, including the undeserved Cinematography category, gave it a wild amount of applause every time it won, and then decided not to honor it here. Strange. I guess The Lives of Others was a pretty good dark horse after all.
Original Song: I guess Dreamgirls did split the vote. Huh. More love for An Inconvenient Truth at the same time, as Al Gore got yet another shoutout from the stage, as Melissa Etheridge thanked essentially just her wife and him. Y'know, if it was only this crowd responsible for all the voting come election time, we could finally see the unanimous election of a president this time around.
By the way, while I'm stepping into shady territory, the selection of Etheridge, combined with DeGeneres hosting, the selection of Judy Dench as a nominee for her role in Notes On A Scandal, and the positive comments of a couple different presenters, lesbianism had a pretty good night out. Male homosexuality got no support from the stage. Guess it's not their year. It's a shame, they did so well last year.
Sound Editing: And it looks like Flags didn't split the vote, either. I'm not very good at guessing vote-splitting. I'm glad, though, because Letters From Iwo Jima was my favorite bit of sound editing of the year. I know that sounds idiotic, but it really was.
So, a mixed bag: 63% accuracy for the night, but I think I did pretty well considering. One of the Oscar hosts kept saying things like "I bet your scorecard's got more scratches than circles on it!" and "If you picked An Inconvenient Truth for Best Song, you probably don't have to buy the donuts tomorrow!" and "Did you see who just won Best Cinematography? I guess Hollywood still has a cocaine problem after all!" (Alright, I made that last one up).
See you next year! And if your name is Peracchio, I'll expect that fiver in the mail shortly.