2009 Critics Choice Award Commentary

The 2009 Critics Choice Awards were broadcast last night on VH1. I was happy and disappointed with the critics thought was the best of the year. Here is my running commentary of the train wreck of last night.

Advice to award show writers:

First, the “witty banter” needs to go. I hate it. Just say the category and hand the award out. Mostly everybody over forty needed to have their glasses on, on their person or needs to have them on when reading the TelePrompTer. Poor Chris Noth.

Jason Alexander “hosting” was dead in the water. Some old jokes that were not hitting their mark.

The presented categories are out of sequence. The winner are in bold.

Best Documentary Feature:

I.O.U.S.A.
Man on Wire
Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired
Standard Operating Procedure
Young @ Heart

Duh! I knew Man on Wire was going to win. I have not seen any of the nominees in this category. I wish that some of these documentaries would get a wider release, instead of the limited release and the screeners for various film critics. It’s not fair to the public and it makes the whole award season so snooty. “We get to see films that you don’t.”

Best Composer:

Alexandre Desplat – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Clint Eastwood – Changeling
Danny Elfman – Milk
Hanz Zimmer and James Newton Howard – The Dark Knight
A.R. Rahman – Slumdog Millionaire

I agree with the critics with A.R. Rahman. I loved the music in the movie. Very lively and vibrant. The Bollywood sensibility permeated throughout the film. As you know from my review of the film, I was afraid that the film would sweep all the awards for the evening.

Best Song:

“Another Way to Die” from Quantum of Solace
“Down to Earth” from WALL-E
“I Thought I Lost You” from Bolt
“Jaiho” from Slumdog Millionaire
“The Wrestler” from The Wrestler

I don’t remember any of the songs from the movies I have seen. I wish that “Rock Me Sexy Jesus” was nominated. I was glad that Bruce Springsteen took something away from Slumdog. He was not there during the ceremony.

Best Cast Ensemble:

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The Dark Knight
Doubt
Milk
Rachel Getting Married

I was surprised that Milk won in this category. Most of the cast was fantastic, but I thought that Doubt or The Dark Knight would win here. I still have a problem with the Jack Lira character. Sean Penn was supposed to be on the stage with Josh Brolin and Emile Hirsch, but he nowhere to be found. I thought that he was doing her usual “I’m not showing up unless I know I am going to win” routine.

Best Young Actor/Actress

Dakota Fanning – The Secret Life of Bees
David Kross – The Reader
Dev Patel – Slumdog Millionaire
Brandon Walters – Australia

OMFG! Dev won. Are you kidding me? I thought that he would the weak link in the whole picture. Brandon Walters was robbed in this category. The critics are kissing the proverbial ass of Slumdog. Such a damn shame.

Best Action Movie:

The Dark Knight
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
Iron Man
Quantum of Solace
Wanted

A nice consolation prize for The Dark Knight, because I knew that Slumdog Millionaire was going to win Best Picture. It was no contest in this category. Some of nominees are laughable by comparison except for The Dark Knight and Iron Man.

Best Comedy Movie:

Burn After Reading
Forgetting Sarah Marshall
Role Models
Tropic Thunder
Vicky Cristina Barcelona

I was so glad that Burn After Reading didn’t win. I was not keen on any of these movies, but Ben Stiller got up on stage and blathered on and on and on. I had to mute him. I think this was the first category presented. Maybe.

Best Supporting Actor:

Josh Brolin – Milk
Robert Downey, Jr. – Tropic Thunder
James Franco – Milk
Philip Seymour Hoffman – Doubt
Heath Ledger – The Dark Knight

I was such a great moment when Aaron Eckhart and Laura Dern called out Heath’s name. The whole auditorium give a standing ovation when Christopher Nolan accepted Heath’s award on his behalf. He made a gracious speech about working with Heath and his indelible contribution to the acting profession. They showed Heath’s picture on the screen. Wow.

Best Supporting Actress:

Penelope Cruz – Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Viola Davis – Doubt
Vera Farmiga – Nothing But the Truth
Taraji P. Henson – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Marisa Tomei – The Wrestler
Kate Winslet – The Reader

I was surprised that Kate won. She was not there at the ceremony. I learned later that night that she was in New York City on David Letterman promoting “Revolutionary Road” and “The Reader.” That’s why she couldn’t be there. I wanted Viola Davis to win, but she will make a impression coming up.

Best Foriegn Language Film:

A Christmas Tale
Gomorrah
I’ve Loved You So Long
Let the Right One In
Mongol
Waltz with Bashir

I only saw one that was Let the Right One In. I am glad it was nominated. It’s strange to see Mongol in there, because it was nominated last year for the Oscar. I was surprised that Waltz with Bashir won. I thought that Gomorrah was going to win. It has been winning award, after award and people were very lukewarm about the film. Hmm.

Best Animated Feature:

Bolt
Kung Fu Panda
Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa
WALL-E
Waltz with Bashir

Winning Best Foreign Film was a consolation prize, since everybody knew that WALL-E was going to win. You know, I have my hang ups about WALL-E. It was a very good movie. When Andrew Stanton got onstage, I wanted him to say that, “Yes, I did make this movie to tell the public about their stupid, lazy ways. It was an environmentalist propaganda movie.” He didn’t. Boo.

Best Actress:

Kate Beckingsale – Nothing But the Truth
Cate Blanchett – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Anne Hathaway – Rachel Getting Married
Angelina Jolie – Changeling
Melissa Leo – Frozen River
Meryl Streep – Doubt

This was a first time that there was a tie since 2002 when Jack Nicholson and Daniel Day-Lewis won for Best Actor. Anne Hathaway was surprised that won. She was always the girl not getting nominated for something. She was on stage for a while. I had to mute her. She was like Halle Berry, except without the ugly cry. Next, Meryl was not present so Viola Davis accepted the award on her behalf. Viola expressed the words that Meryl would say and what a pleasure it was to work with herself. I thought it was endearing.

Best Writer:

Simon Beaufoy – Slumdog Millionaire
Dustin Lance Black – Milk
Peter Morgan – Frost/Nixon
Eric Roth – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
John Patrick Shanley – Doubt

I was getting really irate when I heard this. See the critics kissing the ass of this movie that is easily flawed. I thought that Frost/Nixon or Doubt had stronger screenplays than Slumdog. I knew it was coming.

Best Actor:

Clint Eastwood – Gran Torino
Richard Jenkins – The Visitor
Frank Langella – Frost/Nixon
Sean Penn – Milk
Brad Pitt – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Mickey Rourke – The Wrestler

I knew it was going to be a toss-up between Sean and Mickey. Personally, I don’t see Sean winning the Oscar for this role. He was good, but I thought that he went a little too far with his performance like he did in “I Am Sam.”

Best Movie for Television:

Coco Chanel
John Adams
Recount

It was a no-brainer that John Adams would win in this category. I want to make a fashion critique. Was Tom Hooper (the director) wearing a velvet blazer? That is all.

Best Director:

Danny Boyle – Slumdog Millionaire
David Fincher – The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Ron Howard – Frost/Nixon
Christopjer Nolan – The Dark Knight
Gus Van Sant – Milk

So typical. I have no words to say about this.

Best Picture:

Changeling
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The Dark Knight
Doubt
Frost/Nixon
Milk
The Reader
Slumdog Millionaire
The Wrestler
WALL-E

DUH! I was done. I turned the TV off. Done!

I have to say after Slumdog Millionaire wins a crap load of Oscars– I betcha a decade from now– the film is not going to hold up, and people were caught in the groundswell of praise for this heavily-flawed film. It’s a damn shame.

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About Branden

Branden: I am just your average movie nut that reviews films. Gives his take on pop culture and Hollywood happenings. Dreams to have his own thriving website and make a living doing what he is passionate about.

Posted on January 9, 2009, in 2009, Award Show Coverage, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Midgard Dragon

    “Winning Best Foreign Film was a consolation prize, since everybody knew that WALL-E was going to win. You know, I have my hang ups about WALL-E. It was a very good movie. When Andrew Stanton got onstage, I wanted him to say that, “Yes, I did make this movie to tell the public about their stupid, lazy ways. It was an environmentalist propaganda movie.” He didn’t. Boo.”

    You have no imagination and are attempting to diss one of the best films of the year. Boo indeed, loser.

  2. Quite the contrary. I do have an imagination. I think that film is sending this message, but Andrew Stanton is not acknowledging that fact.

    I said it was a good film, but not the best of the year in my opinion.

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