Dissecting Scott Feinberg's 2010 Oscar picks

Out of Scott Feinberg's early roll of the Oscar prognostication dice, I'm with him on six Best Picture nominees. In other words, we agree 60%, 6/10 - slightly more agree than we disagree. As I said last month, Toy Story 3 (1) & Inception (2) are the mainstream locks - taking the place of Up and Inglourious Basterds from 12 months ago. These two I'm 100% certain of and whilst I'm not sure Chris Nolan's movie will realistically challenge outside of the technical and potentially Marion Cotillard Awards contention - believe me, Toy Story 3 is a serious Best Picture winner in the making. Not saying it will win - I'm just saying it could and Inception definitely won't. It now seems fairly evident that The Kids Are All Right (3) is going to be this year's contemporary feminist drama pick, ala The Blind Side. From how David Fincher's The Social Network (4)is shaping up, if it's not nominated then the laws of physics have collapsed but then again I said the same about Zodiac three years ago, and was kinda stunned he was then picked for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. True Grit (5) is a safe choice but we need to wait a few more months to see if it's going have weight behind it for the statue. David O'Russell's The Fighter (6) is a boxing movie with a proven awards-bait concept, meaty talent (Christian Bale, Mark Wahlberg) who have maybe been undersold at the Oscars in previous years and a talented director - so how can it not be nominated? But then I would do a lot of shifting from Feinberg's picks... At this point Danny Boyle's 127 Hours could either be this year's Invictus (i.e. look certain as a Best Picture choice, then open in mediocrity and never be heard from again) or it could be Million Dollar Baby (win, win, win), you would be a fool to sway either way. Love And Other Drugs I know has got some buzz but how excruciatingly ordinary was that trailer? The heightened emphasis on the romantic comedy aspect could be fatally damaging and if all we knew about it was the trailer, you wouldn't even put in the same breadth as those above, really. And personally, although I've only seen glimpses - I'm finding Anne Hathaway's performance annoyingly over-the-top rather than a Best Actress lock. The King's Speech - the historical biopic of George V that will star Colin Firth in the leading role will be in performance contention but because it's directed by Brit t.v. helmer Tom Hooper - who last made The Damned United - I thinking he isn't a guy who is a capable of making a Best Picture nominee. Those three I would swap with Never Let Me Go (7), Wall Street 2 (8) and Black Swan (9). I would swap Another Year for another Cannes entry I saw - Blue Valentine (10). Feinberg dismisses The Ghost and Shutter Island as 'not happening' and it's probably true, but I loved them both. For the acting categories, I'm pretty certain Feinberg never went to Cannes - otherwise he wouldn't have Javier Bardem's multi-layered performance Biutiful performance under 'possibility' for Best Actor - when he's actually an absolute shoe-in nomination. It's a better performance than the one he won for Best Supporting two years ago in No Country For Old Men and that's high praise. Two massive performances overlooked in Feinberg's list: Josh Brolin's devilish stock broker in Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps & Marion Cotillard's nightmare projection in Inception. You can see Feinberg's full list HERE.
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Matt Holmes is the co-founder of What Culture, formerly known as Obsessed With Film. He has been blogging about pop culture and entertainment since 2006 and has written over 10,000 articles.