Another year, another Oscars. In years like this, where the major categories are almost entirely locked up, it is difficult to become anticipatory. This is an Oscar year I moved past in investment pretty quickly. I have no problem with The Artist taking the major awards tonight. Audiences love it and it’s a fine film (albeit one I forgot entirely ten minutes after it ended). I personally prefer Hugo, The Tree of Life, MoneyballMidnight in Paris and The Descendants (for as clunky as it is at times) over it (and that’s just a preference over fellow nominees, not to mention the much larger slate of worthy and worthier films from 2011). But there is no animosity between The Artist and I, just indifference, and this shrug of an Oscar year will be an enjoyable event nonetheless.

My picks are, for the most part, very standard. I almost always go for the majority rule to play it safe. I also put my preferred win under ‘want’ . If it is not there, it is because I have not seen the majority of the nominees or do not feel knowledgeable enough to make a preferred choice. I also have 3 No Guts, No Glory picks.

Best Picture:
Think: The Artist
Want: Hugo

Best Director:
Think: Michel Hazanavicius – The Artist
Want: Terrence Malick – The Tree of Life

Best Actor:
Think: Jean Dujardin – The Artist
Want: Demian Bichir – A Better Life

Best Actress:
Think: Viola Davis – The Help
Want: Rooney Mara – The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (but Davis winning will be equally satisfying)

Best Supporting Actor:
Think: Christopher Plummer – Beginners
Want: Nick Nolte – Warrior

Best Supporting Actress:
Think: Octavia Spencer – The Help
Want: Jessica Chastain – The Help

Best Original Screenplay:
Think: Midnight in Paris – Woody Allen
Want: A Separation – Asghar Farhadi

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Think: Alexander Payne, Nat Rash, Jim Rash – The Descendants
Want: Bridget O’ Connor, Peter Straugh – Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

Best Art Direction:
Think: Hugo
Want: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

Best Cinematography:
Think: The Tree of Life
Want: The Tree of Life

Best Costume Design:
Think: Anonymous 

Best Foreign Language Film:
Think: A Separation

Best Sound Editing:
Think: War Horse

Best Sound Mixing:
Think: Hugo

Best Documentary:
Think: Hell and Back Again

Best Documentary Short:
Think: Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom

Best Live-Action Short
Think: Tuba Atlantic

Best Animated Short:
Think: The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

Best Animated Feature:
Think: Rango

Best Editing:
Think: Hugo
Want: Moneyball

Best Original Score:
Think: The Artist
Want: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy 

Best Visual Effects:
Think: Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Want: Rise of the Planet of the Apes 

Best Original Song:
Think: “Real in Rio” – Rio
Want: “Man or Muppet” – The Muppets

Best Makeup:
Think: The Iron Lady
Want: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 

No Guts, No Glory:
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 wins Art Direction
A Separation wins Best Original Screenplay
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy wins Best Original Score

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