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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Oscar Series: Best Supporting Actor

Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role
Casey Affleck, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
Javier Bardem, No Country for Old Men
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Charlie Wilson's War
Hal Holbrook, Into the Wild
Tom Wilkinson, Michael Clayton

Yawn. What a boring race this is. I don't even know what to write here other than it's over. The Academy might as well already engrave this statue with the name, Javier Bardem. Anyway, take a quick look at this "race".

Casey Affleck for The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford is probably the "biggest" threat to Bardem. Honestly, I would have probably voted for him because I thought he role was more challenging. I'm just going to steal my roommates line and say, "His performance was behind his eyes." Just look at his eyes during the film and you see this admiration, fear, and everything else boiled up inside. Affleck, who received his first nomination for this role, is only on his way up. Looking forward to his upcoming roles.

Javier Bardem for No Country for Old Men has literally won almost every award this year. It's amazing really. You have to love his performance and his haircut. He evokes a lot of fear on the screen with his look and his voice. Who would have ever thought a coin flip would be so scary? Bardem was nominated for Best Actor in 2000 for Before Night Falls (directed by Julian Schnabel) and there's no doubt in my mind or anyone else that knows the Oscars that he will win.

Philip Seymour Hoffman for Charlie Wilson's War was probably nominated on name more than anything. I love his acting skills, but I haven't even seen this film. Nor do I really have a desire to. This is the only nomination for the film that was supposed to be a serious contender this year. Hoffman won an Oscar for Best Actor back in '05 for Capote, so I think he can live with the loss.

Hal Holbrook for Into the Wild is considered the sentimental favorite. Too bad he has no shot. If Peter O'Toole couldn't beat Forest Whitaker last year, then Holbrook needs more than a miracle. Part of the reason for Hal being out of this race is the film dyed down. Only two nominations? Plus, Hal failed to win any big awards to make him a serious threat. Holbrook is a great actor and this is surprisingly his first nomination. If you want to watch a good movie with him in it, watch Creepshow (probably not his best role, but my favorite). I love him in that film.

Tom Wilkinson for Michael Clayton is an actor I continue to admire. He's been around for years and continues to give great performances. This is no exception and he was one of the bright spots for a film I was not too crazy about. Sadly, like the rest the nominees, he has a huge hill to climb and I don't see him defeating Bardem. This is his second nomination (02' Best for In the Bedroom) and at the end of the night expect him to be 0/2.

Forget history or statistics, this race doesn't need any of them. It's probably the biggest lock this year. Similar to Helen Mirren last year where there was no doubt that she would win. Still, with all the certainty, people are picking against Bardem (in my Oscar pool). Why? I have no idea. Maybe they know something that I don't.

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