Random thought – Erin Brockovich is kind of like 2000’s Capote in terms of Oscar nominations: 2 for acting, 1 for writing, 1 for direction, and one for film. And the one that it won was for the Lead Performance! And it was a biopic. Odd, no?
Anyway, before I start, I would like to defend my first choice. I really, really, adore Erin Brockovich, for its message, soul, and storytelling of redemption. And for all those who disliked Julia’s performance, could anyone really not reward her? It’s not often Hollywood gets to award a “star,” and you don’t get any starrier than Julia. Disagree all you want, but awards such as these can only encourage the star to work better.
So, without further ado:
Gold: Erin Brockovich
Silver: Almost Famous
Bronze: The Princess and the Warrior
Runners up: Battle Royale, O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Meet the Parents, Dancer in the Dark, Gladiator, Mission Impossible II
My review of Erin Brockovich can be found here. I loved Almost Famous in its heart and carefree enjoyability and A-list cast. The Princess and the Warrior was one of the most distinctive films I’d ever seen. Battle Royale and Mission Impossible II were two great action movies, and Meet the Parents and O Brother Where Art Thou were funny.
Gold: Ang Lee, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
Silver: Steven Soderbergh, Erin Brockovich
Bronze: Cameron Crowe, Almost Famous
Runners up: Lars von Trier (Dancer in the Dark), Ridley Scott (Gladiator)
Love Ang, hate Crouching Tiger. Also, everyone gushes about how Soderbergh made great films in one year, but he only really made one. Traffic was boring to the extent of Syriana (retire, Stephen Gaghan), and the only reason I’d ever watch it again is because apparently Topher Grace and Clifton Collins Jr are in it. It was just so dull.
Actor, Leading Role
Gold: Jamie Bell, Billy Elliot
Silver: Patrick Fugit, Almost Famous
Bronze: Javier Bardem, Before Night Falls
Runners up: Frankie Muniz (My Dog Skip), Dan Futterman (Urbania)
Jamie Bell was simply brilliant in his naturalness. His Billy was a hard task to tackle, but Bell portrayed him with appropriate amounts of gutso, determination and humanity. That he was so young only adds to the talent. Patrick Fugit was adorable in his wide-eyed naivety at entering the rock and roll scene, and Javier Bardem was great. Frankie Muniz totally broke my heart, and Danny Boy tackled his sick role with appropriate sickness.
Actress, Leading Role
Gold: Julia Roberts, Erin Brockovich
Silver: Franka Potente, The Princess and the Warrior
Bronze: Bjork, Dancer in the Dark
Runners up: Renee Zellweger (Nurse Betty), Maggie Cheung (In the Mood for Love)
Julia was great. Great, great, great. Franka’s performance went pratically unnoticed but it was brilliant. I loved Renee’s comedic turn in Nurse Betty. Maggie Cheung’s performance was like, the one good thing about In the Mood for Sleep.
Actor, Supporting Role
Gold: Joaquin Phoenix, Gladiator
Silver: Albert Finney, Erin Brockovich
Bronze: Gael Garcia Bernal, Amores Perros
Runners up: Philip Seymour Hoffman (Almost Famous), Don Cheadle (The Family Man)
Joaquin totally dominated Gladiator. He should’ve won the acting award for Gladiator. Albert Finney excelled in a low-key performance, and Gael Garcia Bernal’s turn was very fine. He was good at acting, too. Philip Seymour Hoffman and Don Cheadle get rewarded simply for existing.
Actress, Supporting Role
Gold: Kate Hudson, Almost Famous
Silver: Marcia Gay Harden, Pollock
Bronze: Catherine Deneuve, Dancer in the Dark
Runners up: Julie Walter (Billy Elliot), Frances McDormand (Almost Famous)
Kate Hudson rocked Almost Famous as the band’s muse, Penny Lane. She was bright and cheerful, but also revelled in the sad realisation that she was nothing more than a groupie. Everyone else was good, too, especially Marcia, who could have easily been annoying, but instead was quietly heartbreaking.
Writing, Original Screenplay
Gold: Almost Famous (Cameron Crowe)
Silver: Erin Brockovich (Susanah Grant)
Bronze: State and Main (David Mamet)
Writing, Adapted Screenplay
Gold: Wonder Boys (Steven Knovles)
Silver: O Brother, Where Art Thou? (Coen brothers)
Bronze: The House of Mirth (Terrence Davies)
Music, Original Score
Gold: Malena (Ennio Morricone)
Silver: Erin Brockovich (Thomas Newman)
Bronze: O Brother, Where Art Thou? (Carter Berwall)
Runners up: Almost Famous (Nancy Wilson), Unbreakable (James Newton Howard)
Gold: O Brother, Where Art Thou? (Roger Deakins)
Silver: Chocolat (Roger Pratt)
Bronze: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Peter Pau)
Gold: Almost Famous (Joe Hutshing & Saar Klein)
Silver: Gladiator (Pietro Scalia)
Bronze: Wonder Boys (Dede Allen)