Oscar Predictions: Who Will Win & Who Should Win

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The Oscars are rapidly approaching.  Next Sunday, February 27, we'll finally be able to put the 2010 movie year in our rearview mirror.  Anne Hathaway and James Franco, your hosts for this year's ceremony, are likely scrambling overtime to put their act together and not embarrass themselves too much.  And the nominees?  When not writing down their acceptance speeches or picking out what to wear, they're probably biting their nails right now.  Well, not all of them.  Sorry Jennifer Lawrence, but you're not going to win this year.  Enjoy the nomination.  So, who will win?  And better yet, who should win?  Hammervision is here to help.  I typically get 18 of 24 correct each year, and I'm not expecting anything different this time around.  Will it be King's Speech or The Social Network?  Melissa Leo or Hailee Steinfeld?  And can anybody beat Aaron Sorkin for Best Adapted Screenplay?  Read on and find out.

BEST PICTURE
127 Hours
Black Swan
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
The Social Network
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter's Bone
Who Will Win?  The King's Speech has the momentum.  It's about to clear $100 million at the box office.  And it pulled a hat trick by sweeping the producer's, director's and actor's guild awards.   Good movie, lame pick for Best Picture.
Who Should Win? Toy Story 3 was the best movie I saw last year.  If there wasn't a Best Animated Feature that they could honor it with, TS3 might have had a better shot at the big prize.
BEST ACTOR
Javier Bardem, Biutiful
Jeff Bridges, True Grit
Jesse Eisenberg, The Social Network
Colin Firth, The King's Speech
James Franco, 127 Hours
Who Will Win?  Colin Firth is a lock.  
Who Should Win? Although my favorite performance came from Jeff Bridges, he just won for Crazy Heart and it's hard to deny Colin Firth the award this year.  Spread the wealth, and all. 
BEST ACTRESS
Annette Bening, The Kids Are All Right
Nicole Kidman, Rabbit Hole
Jennifer Lawrence, Winter's Bone
Natalie Portman, Black Swan
Michelle Williams, Blue Valentine
Who Will Win?  Natalie Portman.  But if Annette Bening spoils it and gets her "lifetime achievement" Oscar, heads will roll.
Who Should Win?  Natalie Portman, hands down.
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Christian Bale, The Fighter
John Hawkes, Winter's Bone
Jeremy Renner, The Town
Mark Ruffalo, The Kids Are All Right
Geoffrey Rush, The King's Speech
Who Will Win?  Christian Bale.  Though I wouldn't rest easy on Oscar night if I were him - Geoffrey Rush could ride The King's Speech love train all the way to the podium.
Who Should Win?  Christian Bale.  I mean, did you see The Fighter?  C'mon!
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Amy Adams, The Fighter
Helena Bonham Carter, The King's Speech
Melissa Leo, The Fighter
Hailee Steinfeld, True Grit
Jacki Weaver, Animal Kingdom
Who Will Win?  Thanks to her WTF-crazy "Consider" ads and the fact that in real life she's just like Kristen Wiig in that SNL sketch ("Don't make me sing..."), Melissa Leo has tanked her frontrunner status.  Look for Hailee Steinfeld to take advantage of the opening.  The Academy loves to surprise in this category, especially with little girls (Tatum O'Neil, Anna Paquin).
Who Should Win: Amy Adams.  Cast way against type, she really wowed me.
BEST DIRECTOR
Darren Aronofsky, Black Swan
Joel and Ethan Coen, True Grit
David Fincher, The Social Network
Tom Hooper, The King's Speech
David O. Russell, The Fighter
Who Will Win? Typically, Best Director matches up with Best Picture, but I think this could be one of the years where voters divide their picks as a way of honoring both movies.  With that logic, look for David Fincher to take home the gold even if Social Network doesn't win top honors.
Who Should Win? Darren Aronofsky hit a home run with Black Swan, as far as I'm concerned, and didn't have an Aaron Sorkin script to back him up.  Wait - why isn't Christopher Nolan on this list?  Write-in vote!
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Another Year
The Fighter
Inception
The Kids Are All Right
The King's Speech
Who Will Win? The intimate, play-like dialogue exchanges between Rush and Firth should give The King's Speech the edge.
Who Should Win? Inception.  Certainly the most original script of the year, and it's a nice way to honor Nolan after shafting him out of a directing nomination.
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
127 Hours
The Social Network
Toy Story 3
True Grit
Winter's Bone
Who Will Win? The Social Network.  Aaron Sorkin can't lose.  He's the best bet, odds-wise, after Firth for Best Actor.
Who Should Win? The Social Network. Best script of the year - adapted or original.
THE BEST OF THE REST....(my picks are in bold)
FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Biutiful
Dogtooth
In a Better World
Incendies
Outside the Law (Hors-la-Loi)
DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
Exit Through the Gift Shop - what would happen if Banksy actually won?
Gasland
Inside Job
Restrepo
Waste Land
DOCUMENTARY SHORT
Killing in the Name
Poster Girl
Strangers No More
Sun Come Up
The Warriors of Qiugang
ANIMATED FEATURE
How to Train Your Dragon
The Illusionist
Toy Story 3
FILM EDITING
127 Hours
Black Swan
The Fighter
The King's Speech
The Social Network - the clear winner here, though, again, where the heck is Inception?
CINEMATOGRAPHY
Black Swan
Inception
The King's Speech
The Social Network
True Grit - the oft-nominated Roger Deakins has never won - sympathy vote?
ART DIRECTION
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1
Inception
The King's Speech
True Grit
ANIMATED SHORT FILM
Day & Night - this is the one that showed before Toy Story 3
The Gruffalo
Let's Pollute
The Lost Thing
Madagascar, Carnet de Voyage (Madagascar, a Journey Diary)
LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM
The Confession
The Crush
God of Love
Na Wewe
Wish 143
VISUAL EFFECTS
Alice in Wonderland
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1
Hereafter
Inception
Iron Man 2
SOUND MIXING
Inception
The King's Speech
Salt
The Social Network
True Grit
SOUND EDITING
Inception
Toy Story 3
TRON: Legacy
True Grit
Unstoppable
COSTUME DESIGN
Alice in Wonderland
I Am Love
The King's Speech
The Tempest
True Grit
MAKE-UP
Barney's Version
The Way Back
The Wolfman
ORIGINAL SCORE
127 Hours
How to Train Your Dragon
Inception
The King's Speech - if the Academy were cooler, they'd pick Social Network
The Social Network
ORIGINAL SONG
"If I Rise," 127 Hours
"Coming Home," Country Strong
"I See the Light," Tangled
"We Belong Together," Toy Story 3

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