The category of the evening is Best Drama Motion Picture, and this years race is tight between The Hurt Locker and Up In the Air. I expect either of these films will win, but look for a possible upset by the soaringly popular (and great) Avatar. In the Best Comedy or Musical category, I would love to see a win for The Hangover. Ultimately however, I have a sense that the win will go to the romantic comedy (500) Days of Summer. In years past this award has loved the musicals, so there is always the possibility that Nine could take the award, a choice that would shock me considering the critical failure that Nine was.
Best Actress in a drama should go to nobody but Carey Mulligan for a role that called upon the lost sensitivities of the early French New Wave in An Education.
Best Actor in a Drama, a tossup between Jeff Bridges for Crazy Heart (the Mickey Rourke of 2009?) or George Clooney for his charmingly upbeat role in Up In the Air. Is there any other movie star aside from Clooney who is a genuine throwback to the Golden Age of Hollywood? No, he should win for character alone. Also nominated in this category is Morgan Freeman for his portrayal of Nelson Mandela in Invictus, the role Freeman was born to play, however it just came about 10 years too late, and embodied in a sports movie of all things. If this was a biopic done when Freeman could have played a younger Mandela, he might just have taken the win.
Best Actor in a Comedy or Musical, Matt Damon for The Informant will most likely win, although I would be excited if Robert Downey Jr. was to win for Sherlock Holmes, a fun character played pitch perfect. Best Actress in a Comedy or Musical is a lock for Meryl Streep for her incarnation of Julia Child in Julie & Julia. This role will no doubt get Streep an Academy Award acting nomination as well.
Another lock is the Best Supporting Actress award which will and should go to nobody else but Mo'nique for her extremely stripped down role in Precious: Based On the Novel Push By Sapphire. Best Supporting Actor is expected to go to Christopher Waltz for his vicious take on a Nazi Officer in Inglorious Basterds. My choice for the award is Woody Harrelson for The Messenger, an understated film that deserves more nominations than it recieved.
Speaking of The Messenger, I was shocked that the films screenplay by Alessandro Camon and Oren Moverman was overlooked in the writing category. While it probably wouldn't be able to beat Up In the Air, it would have been a nice honor if they were at least nominated. In the other movie categories, I predict Best Director will go to Kathryn Bigelow for The Hurt Locker. Best Foreign Film, while I would choose Pedro Almodovar's Broken Embraces, I expect the German film The White Ribbon to win. Best Animated Feature is a race that pins the consistently victorious Pixar for Up, against critical darling Fantastic Mr. Fox. Wes Anderson's Fox, in my opinion has nothing on the depth and brilliance of Up, so I hope Pixar can continue their winning streak.
I guess we will see tonight.