Some quick thoughts:
— Nobody saw The Reader coming. I haven’t seen it (I was boycotting all the Nazi movies this year), but I guess I’ll have to now. What a turnaround from the Golden Globes, where Revolutionary Road dominated the nominations. Unfortunately, it took the fifth Best Picture slot everyone (read: me) hoped would go to The Dark Knight — and the directing slot which should’ve gone to Christopher Nolan (or Darren Aronofsky for The Wrestler, a film which should’ve also gotten a screenplay nod, and Best Picture, too).
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— Doubt: I don’t think Viola Davis’ 10 minutes of crying deserves a nomination, but I’m happy to see Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Amy Adams all nominated. A great movie, if one too “small” for a Best Picture nod. Viola aside (she was fine), everyone in the Supporting Actress category is fantastic.
—Wendy And Lucy: Didn’t get a thing. I suppose Angelina Jolie makes for a better photo op than a quiet indie about a homeless person, but Michelle Williams is outstanding in it and it’s one of the most emotional, affecting films I saw last year. Seek it out — L.A. folks, it’s still playing at the Fairfax Regency.
— Nothing for Synecdoche, New York. I suppose it’s too much to ask to think Jon Brion’s stellar “Little Person” would make Best Song, but I was hoping for a screenplay nod for my favorite movie of the year. No dice. I still love you, Charlie Kaufman.
— Did Robert Downey Jr. really get nominated for Best Supporting Actor for Tropic Thunder? Heath’s going to win (deservedly), but how amazing would it be to have RDJ take the stage and thank everybody for voting for him for playing the dude playing the dude disguised as another dude?
–No Bruce! Can’t the Boss catch a break? Especially when Slumdog got two nominations in the Best Song category?
— No Clint! Guess the Academy decided they’d given the guy enough.
See the full list of nominations here.