OK, since when have the nominations show for any awards show been just as entertaining as the awards themselves?
Answer: the Grammys these days. They're smart to mix the nominations with good music.
Now, the decision to let Seth Macfarlane host the Oscars next month has apparently paid off. He and Emma Stone were entertaining, although one joke after the Foreign Film nominations may have been too early to tell. Seth even suggested having the nominations at 9 PM, instead of 5:38 AM to help out the AM shows back East. Well, mix in some movie clips, and you got a deal.
Now, as to the nominations themselves:
Kathryn Bigelow snubbed for Best Director for Zero Dark 30: apparently enough Oscar voters are just as sexist as the CIA agents Maya has to fight to find Osama Bin Laden.
Except for this: no Ben Affleck for Argo either.
The acting and screenplay nominations were as I expected, and most of the Best Picture choices. I was surprised by the love for Amour (not in Sacramento yet) and Django Unchained. I never thought Django would make Best Picture, but expected Waltz's nomination and original screenplay.
The Best Director race is the one big WTF part of this show. Bigelow had to deal with a sudden rewrite in the script when we did get Bin Laden. The movie was originally about how he got away. It would have also been almost patriotic to include her. I expect her to get awards from the Critics Choice Awards, Golden Globes and Directors Guild, while she crosses her fingers for the film and Jessica Chastain. It wouldn't be the first time a director was honored by that person's peers, but ignored by the Academy. This may wind up to be the most unfortunate, especially if Zero Dark 30 gets Best Picture.
I'd like to blame this on the problems with the Oscar online voting. Apparently most would have preferred paper ballots, and maybe that would have changed things.
While The Avengers got a spot in Visual Effects, other sci-fi movies didn't exist in the eyes of the Academy. Naturally, this always happens. If you're funny or far out...in space..forget it. Granted, Dark Knight Rises wasn't quite as good as Dark Knight (except for Anne Hathaway), but sound and visual effects were incredible. Maybe it would have gotten in, but Life of Pi may have gotten favor because it was able to recreate a CGI tiger so convincing it could almost eat Pi. Sorry, Batman.
So, my choices?
Hathaway and Lewis. Period!! After that....
Supporting Actor is a bit tough. I'd give it to Hoffman, but Waltz is VERY close behind
Chastain should have tied for Supporting Actress last year in The Help, but she'll have a tough battle with Jennifer Lawrence for Best Actress. Chastain will win.
Director seems to be a lock for Spielberg because the real competition is not there, but David O. Russell or Ang Lee could surprise.
Screenplay should go to Lincoln and Zero Dark 30.
Best Picture.........will be a movie. It'll be Lincoln, but should be Zero Dark 30.