The 83rd Annual Academy Awards are Sunday, so it's time for the annual predictions from the revered GonzoGeek panel: Bruce, Chris, John, Matt, Stephe and Matt’s copy of “Wrestlemania 2000” for the Nintendo 64.
Today: Best Supporting Actress
Amy Adams in “The Fighter” - +3300
Helena Bonham Carter in “The King's Speech” - +700
Melissa Leo in “The Fighter” - -250
Hailee Steinfeld in “True Grit” - +275
Jacki Weaver in “Animal Kingdom” - +4000
Lets get to the eliminations first shall we? I haven't even heard of “Animal Kingdom” so I have to cut Jacki Weaver. No offense to Ms. Weaver, but I can't have an opinion on a movie I've never even heard of. Let's see if that comes back to bite me in a later pick shall we? Secondly, I'm eliminating Helena Bonham Carter. It has nothing to do with her work in “The King's Speech.” No, I'm taking revenge for all the nights I had to talk my son down after her portrayal of the hydrocephalitic Queen of Hearts in “Alice in Wonderland.” The Academy loves giving the Best Supporting Awards to kids, see Tatum O'Neal and/or Anna Paquin. Yeah, those both turned out well. I think to avoid another Academy Award winning teen train wreck we can safely eliminate Hailee Steinfield. That leaves us with the ladies of “The Fighter” to duke it out.
Amy Adams has previously been nominated for “Doubt” and “Junebug” and seems a pretty sure bet to win an Oscar before its all said and done. I just don't think its this year. This is Melissa Leo's year and she better enjoy it. With a resume littered with “All My Children,” “Righteous Kill” and “Mr. Woodcock,” her chances have never been better.
The contest comes down to Helena Bonham Carter and Hailee Steinfeld. HBC does a fine job in a movie that will likely bring home lots of statues before the night is done, but not as fine a job as a 14-year old girl more than holding her own with Jeff Bridges and somehow managing to rise to the very top of a Coen Brothers film. No child’s play that. Winner:Hailee Steinfeld.
As a longtime fan of the old Homicide TV show, I'm inclined to pick Melissa Leo, but the ad campaign promoting her for the award disqualifies her. Don't talk about it, Melissa. Be about it. I'll go with Hailee Steinfeld. Oscar loves those precocious child actors, and she was fantastic in True Grit.
I think it's possible that co-stars Melissa Leo and Amy Adams cancel each other out, but I saw The Fighter a week ago and I couldn't name a single memorable Adams scene. She was understated and great, but not affecting the way Leo's self-important mother character was. I think it's more likely that Leo cancels out Jacki Weaver (another beastly maternal character) and Adams, leaving her to duke it out with HBC (Steve Spurrier?) and the newcomer. If Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush are favorites in their respective categories, I think Bonham Carter is out here because the Academy probably won't let one movie sweep everything. I think it comes down to Leo and Steinfeld, and even if Oscar likes to recognize a shiny new star, they also tend to be unofficial "lifetime achievement" awards for performers who step up their game (Jeff Bridges), so I'm picking Melissa Leo.
Last year I managed to go a phenomenal 0 for 5. Missed ‘em all. Hoping to build on that success, I’ve decided to take the approach of the home viewer and only judge what I’ve seen. That means no little films or unknown actors, no insightful analysis of past work or Oscar trends. I’m going with my guts, folks and to that end, I’m going to go with the little girl from True Grit. I’ve not seen any of the other films and won’t until they come out on DVD-BluRay-Demand so I have nothing to compare her to. I like the Big Lebowski, Jeff Bridges and the Coen brothers so there you go. Good luck Mattie!
Wrestlemania 2000 *
Weaver has the longest odds, so she is eliminated first.
Melissa Leo - A perennial solid performer without much hardware: Ivory
Amy Adams - She got pulled into her boyfriend's business: Terri "Marlena" Runnels
Hallie Steinfeld - More talented than beautiful; not white: Jacqueline
Helena Bonham Carter - The Queen: Pat Patterson
From the bell, HBC goes after Leo while the younger ladies brawl it out. Eventually everyone turns on Carter and beats her down, but she doesn't stay down. Fighting back, the stately veteran continues to put the lumber to Leo, finishing her off with a piledriver at 4:52, then adds insult to injury by applying a Figure Four after the elimination. The action spills outside and Carter and Steinfeld form a partnership across generations, beating Adams mercilessly. After a prolonged attack, Steinfeld rolls Adams back into the ring and pins her at 10:23. Carter immediately turns on her younger foe, applying a Figure Four on the weakened young girl. Steinfeld reaches the ropes to force a break, then mounts a staggering comeback. After applying two crippling back rakes, she turns the tide. Carter escapes to the outside to get a breather, but Leo is waiting for her, attacking Carter and gaining some vengeance for her early elimination. Carter returns to the ring where Steinfeld is waiting. The newcomer whips her foe into the turnbuckle and follows it up with a dropkick. Carter staggers out and Hallie Steinfeld rolls her up for a quick pinfall to win the Oscar at 13:52.
Odds were chosen Bodog.com.
* Wrestlemania 2000 picks the Oscars by (1) eliminating the nominee with the longest odds, (2) matching up the remaining four with a character from WM2K’s extensive circa-1997 WWF roster and (3) Staging a CPU-generated four-man elimination match where the last man standing is the Oscar winner. No wrestlers are repeated during the contest.