- Hey, I've already seen one of the Best Picture nominees! I think the last time that happened was 2011. That year, it was Toy Story 3; this year, American Hustle. I expect to see Gravity before the winners are announced in March -- it's playing at Union South next month -- but I can't say I feel the need to rush out and see the others, with the possible exception of Her.
- It's always nice to see Whedonverse alums get recognized, and I see we have two among the nominees this year: Chiwetel Ejiofor (who was The Operative in Serenity) and Amy Adams (Cousin Beth in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "Family.") Is it meaningful that both their Whedonverse performances were written and directed by Whedon himself? No, probably not, but it's kind of an interesting coincidence.
- Will being nominated for an Oscar for playing an HIV positive transsexual woman be enough to get people to stop thinking of Jared Leto as Jordan Catalano? Probably not as long as my generation remains alive, but it's a step in the right direction.
- I wonder why it is that Woody Allen has directed so many more women to Academy Award nominations than men? Thirteen women, including 2014 nominees Cate Blanchett and Sally Hawkins, have earned Oscar nominations for appearances in Allen's movies, versus just five men. (Five of the women and one of the men won, though Martin Landau should have won for Crimes and Misdemeanors.)
- And the Oscar nominee most likely to be a target of Lord Voldemort is ... June Squibb! Who has carved out a niche for herself in the film industry, playing the wife of lead characters in Alexander Payne movies; in addition to playing Bruce Dern's wife in Nebraska, she also played Jack Nicholson's wife in About Schmidt. I imagine she must have been very disappointed to lose the role of George Clooney's wife in The Descendants to Patricia Hastie.
- Speaking of Bruce Dern, I looked him up on Wikipedia -- I wanted to see how much younger he was than June Squibb (seven years) -- and he has quite the distinguished pedigree. His paternal grandfather was a former governor of Utah; his maternal great-uncle was poet Archibald MacLeish; and his godparents were two-time Democratic Presidential nominee Adlai Stevenson and Eleanor Roosevelt.
- I don't know what Foreign Language Film nominee Omar is about, but in my head it's about Omar Little from The Wire.
- Glad to see Steve Coogan nominated for two Oscars after being so cruelly overlooked for his work in Hamlet 2. (Actually, the best performance in that movie was Elisabeth Shue's. She was hysterically funny in that.)
- Seeing The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug consigned to the technical categories reminds me what a huge missed opportunity the Hobbit films represent. If Peter Jackson the director had managed to restrain the worst instincts of Peter Jackson the Tolkein fanboy, as he did when making the Lord of the Rings movies, he could have made one great three-hour adaptation of The Hobbit instead of the bloated mess of a trilogy we ended up with. I mean, come on, it's a 300-page book.
- I'm surprised only one song from Frozen was nominated for Best Original Song. I've heard nothing but good things about the song score, so I expected it to get the two allowed under Academy rules.
- Total number of nominated films seen prior to nomination: three. Not too impressive.
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