By now, you've already seen plenty of predictions about who will take home a little golden guy on Sunday night, but I thought I should throw up a disclaimer from the start. As a critic, it is difficult for me to make predictions without a bit of bias toward the films that I really like. Thus, in addition to giving you who I think will win, I am going to lay down who I think should win as well.
With that said, lets get down to it. We start with some of the lesser publicized categories, the awards given to those who work behind the scenes. From the man behind the camera to those who adapt previous literature into a two-hour cinematic adventure, these folks are the gears that keep the wheels of cinema rolling. Without them, there would be no story, no dazzling visuals, and certainly none of those eye-popping effects that sell popcorn.
Best Achievement in Cinematography
Who Will Win: Guillermo Navarro (Pan's Labyrinth)
Who Should Win: Emmanuel Lubezki (Children of Men)
Combining his keen eye with the strong-willed vision of director Alfonso Cuaron, Emmanuel Lubezki helped to create one of the most visually stimulating films of the year in Children of Men. The two men brought to life P.D. James' dark and chaotic vision of a future world where humanity can no longer procreate and everyone is just waiting for the end to come.
The look of the film sets the tone of intrigue and creates a distinct mood within the viewer, a mood that adds to the already intriguing story. But while Children of Men was the most stunning film, it did not get quite as much press as Pan's Labyrinth, which is highly regarded as one of the year's best looking films. Guillermo Navarro led us deep into a fantasy world like no other, and he just may come back out with a little hardware come Sunday night.
Best Achievement in Editing
Who Will Win: Thelma Schoonmaker (The Departed)
Who Should Win: Thelma Schoonmaker (The Departed)
Here is where I will agree with my own prediction. Martin Scorsese's latest masterpiece would not have been such a gripping story had the pieces of the puzzle not been put into place so perfectly. Scorsese's trusted emissary Thelma Schoonmaker, who has edited many of his recent films, executed a tightly cut film that oozed tension and gave us all a jolt here and there. Well worth a ticket, a purchase on DVD and an Oscar statuette.