Yet there are still those who were overlooked. Primarily, I am thinking of Jackie Earl Haley who was electrifying as Rorshach in Watchmen.
Best Supporting Actress
Penélope Cruz for Nine, Vera Farmiga for Up in the Air, Maggie Gyllenhaal for Crazy Heart, Anna Kendrick for Up in the Air, Mo'nique for Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire.
Finally, a category in which I have seen all of the nominees! Most of the performances here are very good, the one notable exception is that they nominated the wrong actress from Nine. Sure, Penelope Cruz was a little flashier and more prominent, but it was not the best one here. They should have nominated Marion Cotillard as Daniel Day Lewis's long-suffering wife. However, in the end it matters not as neither one is going to win.
My feeling is that Mo'nique is going to win. First off, her performance is eye-catching in its cruelty and builds to the revelations at the end. Secondly, the Academy loves actors that go through transformations and this is not the same Mo'nique we know from the comedy stage. At the same time, Vera Farmiga and Anna Kendrick both gave strong performances and a win by one of them could signal a big night for Up in the Air.
Would I have preferred to see all of the nominated performances beforehand? Of course! However, I think it is still relatively easy to guess the winners or at least have a good idea of the likelihood of a given nominee. Be sure to check out the ceremony on March 7, 2010.