Monday, November 17, 2008

Sister Aloysius and Mrs. Miller

I can't review John Patrick Shanley's Doubt this early but after today's screening, I would like to both pat myself on the back and slap myself. I was right and wrong about its Oscar prospects when the cast was first announced seasons ago.

Wrong... about Meryl Streep's third Oscar. Sister Aloysius is a sticky role but it's not the slam dunk "erase memories of Cherry Jones's powerhouse stage creation"' it needed to be for Streep to reach Nicholson's three statue tally. Best Actress fanatics take note: the way is clear for Kate Winslet (Revolutionary Road / The Reader) if she delivers --it's getting harder and harder to imagine anyone else winning.

Right... about Viola Davis. You'll remember that I've been more confident about Davis ("Mrs. Miller") in the supporting actress field than any other candidate and I cautioned other prediction-happy types earlier this year to ignore Amy Adams starpower and focus on the actual roles being played. Mrs. Miller is, to my way of thinking, the key factor in Doubt's arguably overblown reputation as a Great Play. She's the pivot point: After the heartbreak of her one big scene, nothing is the same for the play's lead characters again. More importantly, after her troubling walk-on, nothing is the same for the audience. It's a sneaky miracle part. Mrs. Miller shades and shocks the otherwise blunt themes into more troubling life. It's no longer a simplistic audience game of who did or didn't do what but an ambiguous and emotionally and morally complex problem to wring your hands over. Unless Academy voters get stingy about her screentime, expect to see Viola Davis all dolled up on Oscar night.

Update: The Envelope has an extensive interview up with Viola Davis
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70 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yay for Viola and Kate.

I like Meryl , but I want Kate to win.

Anonymous said...

Having seen the Broadway play with Cherry Jones, I find it almost impossible to imagine another actress playing that part. I surely do not mean any disrespect to Ms. Streep.

I love it when theatre folks strut there stuff on screen. Viola Davis is a great actress.

Anonymous said...

Why do we have to "erase memories of Cherry Jones's powerhouse stage creation"' in order to enjoy Meryl‘s performance ?

I happen to love both of their interpretations, it's two very different animals to me.

Though i do think Kate will win, for The Reader.

NATHANIEL R said...

anon -- we don't need to. I enjoyed Meryl... but to win for something like this you can't have people going around saying they preferred Cherry Jones, you know? my theory at least.

Kevin D said...

how was seymour-hoffman, nathaniel?

Anonymous said...

Wow Nat! Do you think Streep will still be nominated? After all the buzz and rave reviews I was getting quite excited about the prospect of her getting her third Oscar. It would have been just wonderful but your comments make me think otherwise now. What a pity.
How did you find her performance in comparison to Cherry Jones'?

Adeem

Robert said...

Well my two initial questions have already been asked. Will Meryl still get a nomination and what of PSH?

And I'm just not sure about Nathaniel's argument that not being as good as Cherry Jones will hurt. I'm sure Cherry was better, but most of us haven't seen the Broadway production.

I'll be going in without the ability to compare Meryl to anyone else. How many people in AMPAS will do the same? I just don't know.

Rick said...

You know, how many people out there saw Cherry Jones on the stage???? and why do we need to compare anyway ... the mediums of stage and screen are two different ones. On the stage you must REALLY project to get those emotions out there, thus the shouting. On the screen , you need to tone it down and use a more subtle approach. I read an article a few months ago that the director, Shanley gave. He said he did not use Jones because he did not want a "retread" of the role she developed. ( Also, I am sure he wanted a name star ).
You seem so sure about Winslet ... for the first time, I am disappointed in your narrowness.

Rick said...

P. S. I do think Viola Davis has a BIG chance for the Oscar... she is marvelous.

I Don't count Streep out ... so far Jolie, Hawkins, and Hathaway will not win... nor Leo.

Anonymous said...

I didn't see the play, but I don't count out Meryl for her third Oscar... She's received raves for her performance and I believe that the principal point about the Vriety's critics was: Meryl is not like Jones. I'm agree to Rick comment.

And about Winslet's Oscar in Lead Category... Sorry for being the bad guy, but according to Revolutionary Road test screeners, all the raves goes to DiCaprio and Shannon, not to Winslet. Kate is fine but Leo is standout. And if "The Reader" goes to supporting... Well, I love Kate but I think this perfect role for winning the Oscar is her Hannah Schmitdz

Anonymous said...

By the way, is true the apathic reception of australian critics for Luhrmann's film? I heard this was too long, fine but not fantastic and the only great review was for Murdock's newspaper (Fox Company)

E Dot said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
E Dot said...

I, too, just saw Doubt and Revolutionary Road yesterday. I can say, having compared both Streep's and Winslet's performance, that Meryl definitely shined of the two (see my review at www.mzrevenge.blogspot.com). I've yet to write the review for Revolutionary Road, but the film was lackluster. Kate will undoubtedly get nominated, but I think expectations are far too high for this role....

NicksFlickPicks said...

Doesn't Kristin Scott Thomas have a pretty strong run at this thing? Even though it seems crazy-early to talk about. Before Amy Ryan won everything that wasn't nailed down last year, I don't think she woulda been called a front-runner, and her big surge was followed by the Dee surge and then the Swinton surge (with the Blanchett thing happening all along). Which is to say... I know it's close to the end of the year, but we don't have any idea, really, do we?

Still, if Scott Thomas wins all the critics prizes, or Winslet misses at the Globes, or Anne Hathaway has a tracheotomy - you get my drift.

(I'm eager to hear about Hoffman, too.)

Anonymous said...

I will be happy if Kate wins for RR but I prefer her Hanna role. But it seems Davis will be very hard to beat. It's just that I would like to see her win for something that is better than anything before. I don't think for example that her perf in RR is better than the one in Little Children whereas I think that the "Reader" perf is something really brilliant (I can only assume). Meaningless thoughts perhaps. :p


Jim

E Dot said...

Hoffman was amazing. I think he has a good chance of getting nominated, if the category isn't already too crowded....

NATHANIEL R said...

rick & anon --as far as "why do we have to compare" ... you don't. But my point is that many people will. If you've seen both you can't help but do that. It's like if you read a book you'll always have the awareness of it as you're watching the movie made from it.

And presumably many academy members have seen Doubt the play. It was a HUGE hit here in NY (the way hollywood types are all abuzz about August:Osage County is similar) and Cherry Jones also toured with it.

this isn't an obscure property is what I'm saying.

as for me being "narrow", I have no apology for that. I'm supposed to call the Oscar race like I see it. And there are many years when one person sort of takes over. I just have a REALLY hard time imagining anyone "winning" at this point (seriously can Jolie win? No. Can Sally Hawkins win? don't think so. Hathaway? Too soon. Etcetera. This was a Meryl vs. Kate battle and I just think it's going to be Kate.

Maybe i'll be wrong again. ;)

kevin d i'm shocked to say that I thought he was quite good. However i'm still furious about the ridiculous "supporting actor" tag. it just aint right. I hope that campaign is rejected.

NATHANIEL R said...

maybe i get too excited by actress battles though. Perhaps Rev Road will disappoint and I'll be back to saying Streep ;)

who knows?

it's also good to remember that i'm just one person. just as all the reviews you read are one person. consensus takes a while to form and there is no consensus yet on these major contenders. We'll see.

nick perhaps this is also "narrow" thinking too but the idea of Kristin Scott Thomas pulling it off and having two French Language Films win Actress back to back. That seems as likely to me as WALL*E winning Best Picture (not the animated category)

but great point about 2007 supporting actress. God that was exciting. Would that all Oscar races had that much actual fluidity.

I HOPE I'M WRONG ABOUT ALL OF THIS. I HOPE IT'S A FIVE WAY RACE

Rick said...

I saw the play Doubt with Jones ... and no denying she was great .. but again A very small minority get to see her. It would have been interesting to see her get the movie role and see if she would have done it the same way as she did on the stage.

NATHANIEL R said...

I'm not saying she won't be nominated. I think a nomination is in the bag.

and if Winslet does disappoint (scandal!) than we will have a really interesting race since nobody will seem like a slam dunk winner.

Anonymous said...

Nate, although I should wait for your new predictions, can you tell me if you have reconsidered Kate's chances on the supp category? I mean, I don't see why are ALL (except Davis and MAYBE Cruz) the others higher than Kate? Again, maybe you have changes your mind by now. I know it's not really on topic but I couldn't resist. :p

Jim

NATHANIEL R said...

Jim -- that was entirely due to the constant confusion about that movie and how categorization might come to be. they seem pretty set on a supporting campaign now.

and maybe that's the way she loses best actress and proves me wrong?

there are few people that i'd rather be proven wrong by then the awesome winslet

Anonymous said...

and do you think Meryl still will get nominated?

and what about PSH?

Katey said...

I agree that I kind of hope Winslet disappoints in Rev Road, maybe making her a lock in supporting for The Reader (talk about category fraud!) and leaving the Best Actress race wide open. Though I'd hate to see Viola Davis overshadowed in a category that she may very well come to own.

I still wonder, though, about the power of everyone lining up to bestow Meryl with her latest honor, and ignore any doubts (ha!) others might have. I also liked her performance better than you did, Nathaniel, so maybe I'm biased.

NATHANIEL R said...

katey --but, see, i liked the performance... it just didn't feel like top notch Meryl to me. at the very least she gets all the best (well, the only) laughs. but the performance felt tentative somehow though I'm willing to see again and reevaluate.

This always happens in oscar season though. Unless you LOVE certain things you're thought to hate them. It's so divisive once the gold rush hits

Anonymous said...

If Meryl is better than Kate that still doesn't mean that Meryl will win.I mean didn't Hilary Swank win for her mediocre performance in Million Dollar Baby.

So just thinking in terms of the Academy I think Kate will win. I also know someone who has seen both Doubt and Road and thinks Kate has the better shot. Sasha Stone also thinks so too.

Rev Road may not be Kate's greatest performance, but I'm just saying I think this is her year. They may reward her for her collective work, like they do so many others. I kind of think they may push her for lead for The Reader, but we shall see.

BTW, I haven't seen either films, but I've been hearing mixed responses for both.

MRS said...

1. As you mention, a lot of Oscar voters saw Cherry Jones.

2. She is so fused with the role in the minds of people who saw her that, save a epiphany of a performance from Streep, no one can displace her. It's like imagining someone other than Brando as The Godfather.

3. You say Meryl is "tentative" which is the last adjective you would use to describe Cherry Jones interpretation. No doubt Meryl saw Jones in the role and is perhaps self-conscious about imitating her.

I still can't wait to see it. When I saw the play I thought-Viola Davis should have played Mrs. Miller! At last, it's come true.

Billy D said...

Shit, I really hope Kate wins for Actress before Supporting...I hate to be a snob, but it just seems like they are more apt to award a supporting actress award to a previous actress nominee than the other way around, even for someone as rule-breaking as Winslet. Is there data to back that up? And then having to be relegated to supporting roles forever when she is so obviously the best leading actress out? Grrr.

Is there any chance The Reader will go lead? If she's getting better buzz for that than for RR, I sure hope so. I'm crossing my fingers.

Anonymous said...

Billy d,

I honestly think they are waiting for the response of RR before they really push Kate for supporting. I hear out of the two she is better in Reader.

Anonymous said...

Someone has seen the Reader:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
One Kate:

Winslet is absolutely amazing and simply immersed herself in the German psyche. From her accent to the mechanical gestures she is nothing you have seen yet. At some point she leaves the apartment in a hurry but cannot do it without cleaning a milk glass bottle. "Ordnung muss sein" must be the motto of all her existence. She is stellar!


On Kross and Fiennes:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Both were very good, especially Kross having more screeen time but Winslet steals the scenes and paradoxally Fienes comes through better because he shares only one scene with Winslet. I can see the movie being made with other male actors but Kidman would have been a miss.

~Ariel~

Aaron said...

I agree, Nate, that before Oscar season started, it would come down to Streep vs. Winslet. The only other person that could POSSIBLY pull a surprise win would be Kristin Scott Thomas---but like you mentioned earlier, Marion Cotillard still lingers in the mind and I find it difficult to imagine they would honor two French-language films in a row.

I never saw Doubt on stage. I'm sure many people in the Academy did, and from what it sounds, those who saw Cherry Jones are very passionate. It's her performance---and it sounds like Meryl Streep has one heck of an obstacle to outshine her.

As for Kate Winslet...I truly believe, after reading some of the early reviews for Revolutionary Road, that she will be pushed for lead in The Reader...and win it. I'm really excited to see Revolutionary Road, but I feel like her notices are not strong enough to secure a win--unless sentiment plays a big part in it, which it probably will. From what I've read, she hasn't gotten bad reviews, but many have pointed out that her role was exactly like they imagined---for Kate's great, but the role does not sound like much of a stretch for her. Leo DiCaprio and Michael Shannon have gotten the standout reviews.

The Reader seems like the idyllic role for Kate to yet again show a different side to her acting. The role is much more baitier, and even controversial, than her role in Revolutionary Road. If The Reader receives raves, I expect the Weinstein Co. to start a huge campaign for her in the Best Actress category. But we'll see...

Rob said...

She's still great, but will really hurt Meryl's chances of winning the Oscar is not that she doesn't compare to Cherry Jones, but that Sister Aloyisius ultimately doesn't rank among her best work. If they're going to give her another Oscar, they'll want to give it to a performance that at least blows SOME people away. Most-to-all will be impressed with her work in "Doubt," but few will be championing it as the performance of the year.

E Dot said...

I'll make a gutsy prediction now and say Meryl will win for Best Actress for 'Doubt' and Kate will win Supporting for 'Reader'. There, I said it.

Rick said...

I hope e dot is right!!!!

Yaseen Ali said...

Sad to hear about Streep, but I am so excited to see Viola Davis in this film, and for her Oscar prospects. A nomination for her would make me so, so happy. She was my favourite Supporting Actress of 2002 in "Solaris", and that was a great year for that category. Bring it on.

Anonymous said...

Some of you guys act like all of Meryl's reviews have been raves, um not( Variety anyone?)and there have been more.

Kate hasn't gotten a bad review yet,but her's aren't as stellar as her costars.

So I'd say they are on equal footing, giving Kate the edge because she is oscarless.

So there.

NicksFlickPicks said...

HOLY. GOD.

I mean, I get it. I do it, too. But you've gotta admit - we're a funny bunch.

Anonymous said...

Streep will win. She has had two worldwide hits in the past two years with Devil and Mamma Mia. Winslet does not have good box office with the exception of Titanic. I've seen DOUBT and RR. DiCaprio is outstanding and even though Winslet is solid, she doesn't come across and anything special. Streep was excellent in Doubt and a totally differnt creature than Cherry Jone's. Her Sister Aloyisus had more emotion in her tones. The Academy is going to give Doubt nominations across the board from acting, to writing, to picture to score and cinematography.

Anonymous said...

And the Meryl shit-talking begins. I knew it was coming like clockwork.

NATHANIEL R said...

????

I l-o-v-e Meryl Streep. Let's not label me a hater because it's not my favorite performance by her.

see also my comment from 9:27

jimmy said...

I like streep - don't love her. but i do find it odd that she's given virtually every role for a movie calling for a woman in her 50's or 60's. casting her in "doubt" - a plum role - seemed unfair....how's about giving someone else a chance every now & then....sarandon, fonda, spacek, field, maclaine, blethyn, or even the bening etc. i would love to have seen ellen burstyn in doubt. or even a totally de-glammed ann-margret. wow! cloris leachman would be a killer in doubt. one of the reasons these old gals whine & complain all the time about lack of good roles - they all go to meryl streep.

The Know Nothing Know It All said...

For Streep, I never really thought that a third Oscar was in the cards for her for Doubt and this post semi-confirms it.

I don't see either of them winning, honestly. Are there any big leading lady biopic performances coming out? That might clear things up, if you get my drift. I'm just saying, I don't see "Revolutionary Road" being the type of performance Kate Winslet wins for. Lead actress has gone the way of the biopic and/or some sort of performance that was gimmicky in some way for most of the last ten years. I see few people being enthusiastic about her role in a Sam Mendes film (a director who hasn't really excited en masse since American Beauty) to the point that they'll give Winslet a statue. Where's the angle? Winslet's not ugly-ing herself up. She's not playing a famous, recently deceased person. She's playing an attractive fictional character. Even if she's brilliant, the incredible Julie Christie-tease of 2007 is an indication that the Academy is done with that sort of thing...for now. People are really banking on the buzz of this Titanic reunion, which in a way could backfire, as sky high expectations often obscure the way that otherwise fine films are reviewed and digested. Of course, I could be wrong. Is this all incredibly cynical and telling of my lack of faith in the Academy voter?

Anonymous said...

Yeah, that's a quite cynical view, and no, there aren't any big "biopic" roles on the horizon to take away from the Meryl/Kate bloodfest this year (not that it's the end of the world if there were a biopic or deglam in the running either). The story is either going to be Meryl breaking the losing drought and win her 3rd or Kate breaking the drought of her 5 losses and winning something (either lead for "Revolutionary Road" or supporting for "The Reader"). Lead for Meryl and supporting for Kate would calm the fanboy camps of both actresses down and make the Academy seem magnanimous all at the same time. Everybody "wins." The rest of the field? Anne Hathaway (PYT making good in serious dramedy), Sally Hawkins (comedy slotter), and either Kristin Scott Thomas (critical darling/foreign language nominee) or Angelina Jolie (A-lister, previous Oscar winner, the Clint).

Jacob said...

Wow...

1. Nathaniel didn't say anything negative about Streep or her performance - just that it didn't hit the expectations surrounding a third win. No attacks, please.

2. I still think Streep will win for this because it's becoming clear that it is one of the better performances of the year (not better or worse than Cherry Jones, just different).

3. There has only been one "negative" review of Streep from Variety and he called her "iffy" comparing the performance to Jones. Winslet received her first "iffy" from The Hollywood Reporter so they are on the same ground, in my opinion.

4. It's becoming clear that the Sister Aloysius in DOUBT has to please everyone - mainly the people who have seen the play and love Jones. The expectations are too much for this performance, I think. It probably isn't the scenery-chewing and priest-eating performance we thought it was. But that doesn't mean it won't be the best of '08 or enough for a win.

rosengje said...

Maybe with all of the Oscar gurus focusing on Kate vs. Meryl my beloved Kristin Scott Thomas can sneak in and win it all.

I think the Best Supporting Actress race could again prove to be a tough race. Penelope Cruz, Rosemarie DeWitt, and Marisa Tomei have all given performances that have been seen and adored. Viola Davis is stealing away the majority of the attention from Meryl Streep. Kate Winslet could blow everyone away with The Reader. And I still think Michelle Williams or one of the ladies of Synecdoche could sneak in...

Anonymous said...

You think they will award another French-language performance in lead actress this soon? That's going to hurt Kristin Scott Thomas more than anything. It can prevent a win and even a nomination.

NicksFlickPicks said...

Well, she's bound to do well with the critics' awards, don't you think? Hard to imagine Streep or Winslet scooping those (whether or not Streep has a third Oscar or Winslet her first is not going to influence them much), and I can envision Scott Thomas walking off with most or all of the NYFC, LAFC, and NSFC, at least. So, I'm not worried about a nom.

And the fact that she herself isn't French and is much more known (and easily castable) around Hollywood should help her. There are even people who see her fluency in French as some kind of virtue of her acting, which seems strange, but there it is. If Cotillard came after Scott Thomas, she'd have had a problem, but I don't see the difficulty nearly as much in the other direction.

NATHANIEL R said...

that's a good point. It's a small scale version of what might happen if Jodie Foster ever blew people away in a French performance.

NicksFlickPicks said...

(These days, I'd of course settle for Jodie Foster blowing me away in any performance—and not in that Brave One, shotgun-vigilante way—but I'm sure you agree, and it's neither here nor there.)

mrripely said...

i thought as soon as isaw the traielr meryls oscar was not in the bag i just felt it wastime to honor kate,i can see kate being pushed for lead in the reader too the thing is she will be front runner for both awards if streep isn't the slam dunk because all of the others have obstacles already mentioned,hell if scott thomas gave the best perf it would not win,this is kates year and if her buzz for rr is quiet then the reader will charge forth and win it for her.

Anonymous said...

hey nat how much screen time does she have roughly ruby dee 5 minute type small or amy ryan 15 minute small,how many scenes is it a winning role.

NATHANIEL R said...

she has one scene (many reports say two but that's misleading... you see her briefly in one other scene besides the famous one -- but without dialogue)

i didn't use a stopwatch ;) but i imagine it's about 7 minutes of screen time . that's a wild guess.

jimmy said...

what about catherine deneuve...no one is mentioning her - she's gotten some good reviews in the christmas movie.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that Kristin Scott Thomas is sweeping the big three critics awards. If the tide turns into a "let's all award Meryl" deal, or "let's all award Kate" deal, then that could be a domino effect going all the way through the season. Anne Hathaway and Sally Hawkins are in the thick of it for critics wins too.

adam k. said...

I think Scott-Thomas will take the lion's share of the critics' awards. Probably not ALL of them, but enough that she will be seen as the critical darling of the bunch (and that's what'll seal her nomination). It's just the kind of perf that critics love, and that they KNOW they have to push in order for it to make it. Streep, Winslet, Hathaway and Hawkins could all figure in to some degree or another, but they all seem too mainstream in one way or another to really take the critics by storm. Plus they all kind of cancel each other out. I think the "let's reward Meryl!" crowd and the "let's reward Kate!" crowd will kind of blunt each other's effectiveness at driving the collective will. Maybe so much so that Scott-Thomas could ultimately emerge the winner. Her advantage is that she came out of nowhere and doesn't have the burden of expectations.

I think it looks like Meryl & Kate tied for most likely right now, with KST a not-too-distant third. The only other one I could maybe see winning is Hathaway, as she's the closest thing to a PYT deglam/gimmick performance that we have. But the ensemblyness, the unlikeability of her character, and her extreme youth probably kill her chances for an actual win.

That's my take, anyway.

The Know Nothing Know It All said...

Is it me, or does "The Reader" look like a better bet, at least on paper, than "Revolutionary Road," both for Best Picture and for Kate's Oscar chances as well? Let's look at the facts. "The Reader" is Stephen Daldry's 3rd feature. He received best director nominations for the two others. Between those two films, Daldry has yielded four acting nominations and one win. And the Holocaust can often be a lightning rod for awards attention as far as subject matter goes.

"Revolutionary Road" is Sam Mendes's fourth feature. Although he got an acting nod for Paul Newman for "Road to Perdition," I think it's fair to say that none of his films have really excited in a big way since "American Beauty." I know it's not an exact science, but in a lot of ways, Daldry has a better track record. IF Winslet wins this year, I think it will be for "The Reader" and I think that "The Reader" is more likely to get nominated for Best Picture. Any official word on whether she's going lead or supporting?

NATHANIEL R said...

official is supporting but since everyone finds that false you never know.

plus "official" changes depending on reception. the big problem The Reader is still going to have is that it doesn't have the type of big corporate backing that Revolutionary Road has. I mean the Weinstein's have not been that great at the Oscar game lately.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the battle between Streep and Winslet could benefit another actress, but I think this is Anne Hathaway...

Kristin Scott Thomas is fantastic for "I've Loved you So Long" but it was in french language and she's very subte. Nomination si almost a sure thing, winning is another thing after Cotillard's victory (Plus, Cotillard played a french icon)...

I think Hathaway has better chances for:

*She's now in the A-List
*She has worldwide hits (I think even biggers that Winslet)
*She has the perfect age for winning the Oscars (26 years old)
*She's pretty in a de-glam character
*She's well-know american actress (After Mirren and Cotillard)
*Jonathan Demme has a good taste at Oscar for actors... Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins and Tom Hanks.

Only one negative point:

*The dilema of "War Brides"...

Anonymous said...

"i'm shocked to say that I thought he was quite good"

I want more on him, please. Let me hear you say how good he is again.

Psh is brilliant! Some day you'll figure it out!

- cal roth

utahprime said...

Meryl should win based on her brillant performance and her body of work -- for which she has been robbed of any Oscar gold for 25 years.

Joanna said...

I had a lot of stake in last year's Best Actress race (I called for Cotillard's win from the rooftops-- thank God I was not disappointed), and I find myself in a similar position this year. I desperately want Winslet to be rewarded for one of the two great movies she has. I'm so, so, so afraid of her splitting the vote with two great performances, which hardly seems fair.

Also, I do not think that just because DiCaprio does a great job in Revolutionary Road, that it should preclude recognition for Winslet (as some commenters have suggested). The novel is my favorite, and I can tell you that Frank is the "main" character. But April is an award-winning character, as long as they wrote her right.

Here's to hoping....

P.S. How the heck can I see a screening of Revolutionary Road? I absolutely cannot wait any longer for this!

Rick said...

In my copy of Variety today, there was a: For Your Consideration ad for The Reader... Winslet was in the Best Supporting Actress category.

Ozakie said...

I Heart Viola Davis. I think she is one of my favorite actresses. I really hope she gets a nomination for Doubt. Is it me or that what I find amazing about her is that she can be given such a small amount of screen time as in Doubt or in the case of Antoine Fisher (no dialogue) and STILL command the scene.

adam k. said...

Honestly I think supporting for The Reader is a very smart decision, unless it's totally and completely fraudulent, in which case I can't get behind it.

Winslet has a year when she looks to have an easy road to 2 nominations (and that's really the only way to ever get 2), and I'd love to see her do it. It's hard to see her missing for Rev Road unless it's considered a total dud and completely falls apart. And it's also hard to see her missing in Reader if she's actually BETTER in that one and it's a borderline lead role. The only question is where she'd win. But if she's nommed twice, I could almost get over two losses, as she'd go in the history books in yet another way, and it'd only make her stock rise even more in the future.

7 noms at age 33? That would be beautiful.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that Kate or Meryl are too "mainstream" for critics attention. If they really deliver in these roles, I don't see these groups not Helen Mirren-ing one of them all the way to the Oscar podium. They want to be Oscar precursors more than ever now it seems. Kristin Scott Thomas seems like the obvious critical fav this year, but I really think that there's going to be a bandwagon effect this year with the perceived frontrunners. As soon as NBR gets the ball rolling, we'll find out soon enough who'll benefit from the out of the gate raves. Unless it's my girl Angelina -- then all bets are off. :-)

Aaron said...

I think the pre-cursor critics awards will boil down to Kristin Scott-Thomas and Sally Hawkins, with Scott-Thomas taking most of them, and Viola Davis pretty much sweeping the supporting actress.

The Oscar race will come down to Meryl vs. Kate vs. Scott-Thomas vs. Hathaway (I feel like she will be the young, Hollywood breakthrough...a la Ellen Page, Keira Knightley, etc.) and a blood-bath between Angelina Jolie and Sally Hawkins, which I'm predicting will go to Jolie. I love both the ladies' performances, but I'm hoping that Angie can (finally!) regain her respect from the Academy...

...o and p.s. RANDOM but i just saw the trailer for Nothing But the Truth and Kate Beckinsale looks fantastic in it, but I (sadly) fear she will be lost in the shuffle...too bad cause she really is a fine actress...

Anonymous said...

So Adriane Lenox was one of the finalists for the Mrs. Miller role and lost? That's interesting. I didn't know that. I know it's usually go for the big name over the stage actor, but both actresses have low name visibility. But John Patrick Shanley did say he wanted a fresh cast for the film version and didn't want to retread, but still.

JFCR said...

Humm this year's best actress race will be all about star power and snubs.

Jolie seems likely to be nominated just because she's, well, Angelina Jolie, Mrs. Pitt, Embassidor for Good Will, Mrs. Pitt (again), mother of six... and because she was snubbed last year and because she is good (not great, but good) in Changeling.

Streep doesn't own the film just as much as Jones owns the play but Streep + Mamma Mia worldwide fondness + star power + greatest actress alive = nomination every time the Academy members can.

Winslet seems to be, in my opinion, out of reach this year. The Reader WILL give her the supporting nom, Rev Road WON'T give her the best actress nom (or at least i expect it won't although academy members are always bias on some things - like the fact that she has 6 noms and 0 wins...). I believe that an underachieved performance (she cries and screams and throws dishes and vases at everyone it seems xD but her character is not at all interesting) in RR will lead to a LOCK in supporting.

Hathaway, for me, is a sure lock for nomination. Star power, youth, great role, dominance in the screen (although the film is supposed to be based and to be enjoyed on a collective perspective) and well, it feels to be time to put a stamp on her. Oscary all the way.

Kristin Scott-Thomas. Nom is almost sure (Academy can't overlook her). Win? No chance.

Melissa Leo is out. She is outstanding but she is not well-known. And so... bleah.

Nicole Kidman is really wishful thinking. She is good, but she is not at all oscar-friendly. She has that superior air, that phlegm... I don't know why, she always seems cold to me. That's why The Hours is so great in so many levels.

Sally Hawkins? Lock for nom. I'm all for her. Everyone is pulling for her. She's incredible. She's funny. She's lovely. She's... oscary. She seems like it, doesn't she?


To Nat's consideration: the wonderful year of Michelle Williams can be awarded with a Best Actress nom? She seems really good in the picture.

And what about Julianne Moore? I know Blindness is much better as a book than as a picture (the book is excelent; one of the most beautiful i've read) but she carries all the picture and she is really good! Doesn't she stand a chance?

And Emma Thompson? And well, Hollywood runway model Keira Knightley? Don't they have a say on this matter?

I'm all too concerned about this category... But I believe the final five to be:


- Meryl Streep
- Kristin Scott-Thomas
- Sally Hawkins
- Anne Hathaway
- Angelina Jolie



P.S. The Dark Knight has been doing a quite silent campaign. Have they given up on the BP nom? I certainly hope not. I love the film and I hope that a riot is sure to come along to shake things up and remind the Academy that EVERYONE wants The Dark Knight on the ceremony as a BP nom! I really think that they can't pass on the opportunity to increase the ratings with this picture... even though they don't like it very much. Everyone liked this Batman.

Anonymous said...

It appears now (11/27/08) that it is a 3 way race between Streep, Winslet and Blanchett. I still think the edge goes to Streep based on body of work and her intelligent and unique performance in Doubt. Second would be Winslet and third Blanchett. I think Nate expects too much from Streep performances because she is at a point in her career where it is almost impossible to outshine her previous brillance for which she was robbed of gold....Go Meryl - win #3 for your many fans.

Anonymous said...

It appears now (11/27/08) that best actress is a 3 way race between Streep, Winslet and Blanchet. The edge still goes to Streep based on her unique and intelligent performance in Doubt. Second would be Winslet and third Blanchet. I think Nate expects too much from Streep performances based on her past brillance for which she has been robbed of gold many times over. Go Meryl - your true fans are in your corner for #3