BigSPEEGS Movie Reviews
BigSPEEGS' Oscar Shpiel 2002


Best Animated Feature Film:
Nominees:  Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, Monsters Inc., Shrek
My Pick:  Shrek
GHASP!  That couldn't be Jimmy Neutron in the third nomination spot for Best Animated Film?  Do my eyes deceive me?  No Waking Life?  I should've known better the Academy is not known to take risks.  But anyhoo, I just loved Shrek.  I had a ball; it was hilarious all the way through, the animation was eye-popping, the voice actors went above and beyond what one would expect for an animated film, and that Robin Hood scene gets me every time.  A real family film; it's got something for the little ones and us big kids.  I loved Monsters Inc., as well, so I wouldn't be upset one bit if that won.

My Prediction:  Shrek
Box office numbers do not lie.  Nobody expected Shrek to be so good, and it was one of the phenomena of the year in Hollywood.

Best Art Direction
Nominees:  Amelie, Gosford Park, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Lord of the Rings, Moulin Rouge!
My Pick:  Moulin Rouge!
Faithful readers of this website probably have their jaws on the floor right now.  But, I must give credit where credit is due: costumes and art direction are not two of Moulin Rouge's many faults.  When the editing didn't get in the way, Moulin Rouge sure was perdy.
My Prediction:  Moulin Rouge!
There is enough love for this film for it to at least pick this one up, and it looks less digitized than the rest (Gosford Park excluded).

Best Cinematography
Nominees:  Amelie, Black Hawk Down, Lord of the Rings, The Man Who Wasn't There, Moulin Rouge!
My Pick:  The Man Who Wasn't There
Roger Deakins, one of the finest directors of photography in recent memory, does his best work here.  The film itself is not without flaw, but there is only one way to describe the camerawork in The Man Who Wasn't There: beautiful.

My Prediction:  The Man Who Wasn't There
Deakins has never gone home with the gold, but I suspect he'll win this one.  Just look at the trailer and you know it's a shoo-in.


Best Costume Design
Nominees:  The Affair of the Necklace, Gosford Park, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Moulin Rouge!
My Pick:  Moulin Rouge!
Attention to detail pays off here.  It's sad that Hedwig and the Angry Inch didn't make it here; which makes me wonder, if New Line can push enough to get 13 nominations for one of it's films, why do they not campaign for their Fine Line Features?  Beats me.

Prediction:  Moulin Rouge!
Because there is little contest.  Fellowship of the Ring might pick this up if they have a lot of steam on Sunday, but the best work will be honored, I suspect.

Best Documentary Feature
Nominees:  Children Underground, Lalee's Kin: The Legacy of Cotton, Murder on a Sunday Morning, Promises, War Photographer
My Prediction:  Promises
I have little idea since I haven't seen any of them, but since Promises deals with a timely subject (Middle Eastern relationships) and has been getting a lot of press, I'll put my money on it.

Best Documentary Short Subject
Nominees:  Artists and Orphans: A True Drama, Sing!, Thoth
My Prediction:  Sing!
I really have no idea, but the title sounds like fun.

Best Editing 
Nominees:  A Beautiful Mind, Black Hawk Down, Lord of the Rings, Memento, Moulin Rouge!
My Pick:  Memento
Editing doesn't have to be all about cutting pieces of film up into tiny little pieces.  This is the most creative editing of the year, which helped the film's flow and power and probably resulted in one big headache for Dody Dorn.

My Prediction:  Moulin Rouge!
Hmmm... since one can't see a damn thing because no shot lasts more than three seconds, it must be brilliant!

Best Foreign Language Film 
Nominees:  Amelie, Elling, Lagaan, No Man's Land, Son of the Bride
My Pick:  Amelie
Sadly, the only one I saw of the pack, but it was wonderful.  Audrey Tautou is spellbinding.

My Prediction:  Amelie
No Man's Land or even Lagaan could pull off an upset, but since Amelie was such a big hit, I bet that's where the Oscar will go.


Best Makeup
Nominees:  A Beautiful Mind, Lord of the Rings, Moulin Rouge!
My Pick:  Lord of the Rings
Someone please tell me what the hell A Beautiful Mind is doing here?  I could NOT believe at the end of the film, Jennifer Connelly was that old.  Honestly, listen to her voice.  And the makeup in Moulin Rouge! was merely colorful face painting.  But Lord of the Rings had everything from hair to feet to ears to full-body monster suits covered magnificently.  Too bad Hedwig didn't make it.

My Prediction:  Lord of the Rings
Orc.  It's what's for dinner.

Best Original Score 
Nominees:  John Williams (A.I.-Artificial Intelligence), James Horner (A Beautiful Mind), John Williams (Harry Potter), Howard Shore (Lord of the Rings), Randy Newman (Monsters, Inc.)
My Pick:  Randy Newman, Monsters, Inc.
John Williams twice?  I don't think so.  The score for Harry Potter was nice, but it was intrusive in a way that distracted you from the film.  But the score to the other family film nominated, Monsters Inc., is playful and energetic.  Randy Newman finally deserves to win. 
My Prediction:  Howard Shore, Lord of the Rings
This is the one everyone's got in their boomboxes.

Best Original Song
Nominees:  Sting; "Until..." (Kate and Leopold), Enya; "May it Be" (Lord of the Rings), Randy Newman; "If I Didn't Have You" (Monsters, Inc.), Diane Warren; "There You'll Be" (Pearl Harbor), Paul McCartney; "Vanilla Sky" (Vanilla Sky)
My Pick:  Paul McCartney, Vanilla Sky
A nice little ditty that can beat the shmutz out of anything from Pearl Harbor.  And anyway, it's Paul McCartney!

My Prediction:  Paul McCartney, Vanilla Sky
It's Paul McCartney!  He was a Beatle!

Best Animated Short Film
Nominees: Fifty Percent Grey, For the Birds, Give Up Yer Aul Sins, Strange Invaders, Stubble Trouble 
My Pick:  For the Birds
Out of the two of these I saw, the pre-show before Monsters, Inc. is the most entertaining.  I had a grin from ear to ear watching it.  I thought Fifty Percent Grey was interesting, but I couldn't quite see the point they were trying to convey.
My Prediction:  For the Birds
It's Pixar.  Nuff said.


Best Live-Action Short Film
Nominees: The Accountant, Copy Shop, Gregor's Greatest Invention, A Man Thing, Speed for Thesbian
My Pick:  Copy Shop
It's funny and innovative.  I loved the look, the quirkiness, the acting, the ending... all in all, a fine achievement.
My Prediction:  Copy Shop
From what I have heard, Copy Shop has picked up quite a few awards already.

Achievement in Sound
Nominees:  Amelie, Black Hawk Down, Lord of the Rings, Moulin Rouge!, Pearl Harbor
My Pick:  Black Hawk Down
The sound in Black Hawk Down did more than just boom and crash.  It was part of what made the film so horrifyingly real-it engrossed you and made you feel like you were there.

My Prediction:  Black Hawk Down
It's the battle of the war films.  The Academy is made up of mostly white males, so it just doesn't seem like them to vote for the mushy Pearl Harbor.  Anyway, Black Hawk Down is a MUCH better film.


Achievement in Sound Editing
Nominees:  Monsters, Inc., Pearl Harbor
My Pick:  Monsters, Inc.
The Himalayas.  The opening walk to the power plant.  The restaurant.  The flight through the closet door warehouse.  Ear candy to the max.
My Prediction:  Pearl Harbor
They always go for the one that's nominated in both sound and sound editing.

Achievement in Visual Effects
Nominees:  A.I.-Artificial Intelligence, Lord of the Rings, Pearl Harbor
My Pick:  A.I.- Artificial Intelligence
Woah mama.  The most eye popping, innovative and believable visuals since The Phantom Menace or The Matrix.  WOW.
My Prediction:  Lord of the Rings
Just because it's nominated for almost everything else.