With a Little Help from My Friends: Best Supporting

84th Annual Academy Awards Preview Part II

crumudgeonly

As the Oscars draw closer, I continue my preview guide for the upcoming ceremony. Yesterday I covered the writing categories and took a look at screenplays. This is the second installment for the 84th Academy Awards.

Next we move on to the supporting acting categories. I have kind of a bad track record with supporting actress, for some reason me and the Academy just don’t see eye-to-eye there. On the other hand, supporting actor is always pretty easy to get a handle one. This year, the nominees in both categories are pretty outstanding, though there are a couple of miscues. I would’ve loved to see a couple nominations that the Academy missed.

Best Supporting Actress.
The Nomniees:

Bérénice Bejo, The Artist
Jessica Chastain, The Help
Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids
Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
Octavia Spencer, The Help

In the past, I’ve found this category a hard one to judge. Usually I have a pick that I feel is far superior to the rest of the pack, but the Academy seems to feel otherwise. This year, though, there’s no doubt that sure on favorite to win is The Help’s Octavia Spencer. Spencer’s performance was gold and deserves gold in turn. Though none of the other nominees are ill deserving of their nominations, no one comes to close to Spencer. While I’m glad to see some diversity in the nominees in Melissa McCarthy, I am disappointed not to see Shailene Woodley on this list. The 20 year olds’ performance in The Descendants was great and possibly the only thing that could’ve given me pause in choosing Octavia Spencer as this year’s winner.

Favorite: Octavia Spencer, The Help
My Pick: Octavia Spencer, The Help
No Way: Jessica Chastain, The Help
Deserved Nomination: Shailene Woodley, The Descendants

 

Best Supporting Actor.
The Nominees:
Kenneth Branagh, My Week with Marilyn
Jonah Hill, Moneyball
Nick Nolte, Warrior
Christopher Plummer, Beginners
Max von Sydow, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

The past four years, this category has been the most obvious and easiest to predict. This year, it’s not quite as easy, but I’m still comfortable in making a decision. This year, it’s the seniors that shine. Nick Nolte’s performance in the human drama masked as a manly sports movie Warrior was superb. Indeed, Nolte made the film for me, without him I don’t think I would’ve cared for the movie much. And Max von Sydow’s mute performance in Extremely Loud is the only thing worth seeing that film for (honestly, I hated the movie). But ahead of these two we have Christopher Plummer as Ewan McGregor’s dying gay father in romantic comedy Beginners. Plummer’s performance is by far the stand out on this list. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that the Academy made a mistake in no nominating Andy Serkis for his mind boggling performance in the Planet of the Apes reboot this summer. I’m not sure the Academy’s rules on this sort of thing, but either way Serkis was fan-flipping-amazing as Caesar the chimpanzee.

Favorite: Christopher Plummer, Beginners
My Pick: Christopher Plummer, Begginers
No Way: Jonah Hill, Moneyball
Deserved Nomination: Andy Serkis, Rise of the Planet of the Apes

And that’s the gist for the support categories. It’s pretty evident to me who’s taking home the statuettes in both categories. If there was going to be an upset, though, I could see it happening to Plummer. I fully believe he’s walking out with the Oscar, but I’ve heard some pretty good buzz for von Sydow lately. These are the only categories where My Picks and the Favorites to win match up, so we’ll pick up in the next installment with the main acting categories.

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