Film So here we are again. Oscar 2004. I couldn't let it slip by without giving my punts for the various awards.

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Best picture
Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Lost in Translation,
Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Mystic River, Seabiscuit

What a wierd list. I didn't expect to see Seabiscuit in there, certainly didn't expect Master and Commander (but I've seen neither). Haven't seen Mystic River. So I am torn between Translation (which I'm utterly chuffed is nominated) and Rings. I think it's probably their year, especially after the Golden Globes ...

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Best director
Peter Jackson - The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Sofia Coppola - Lost in Translation, Fernando Meirelles - City of God, Peter Weir - Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Clint Eastwood - Mystic River

Looking forward to the 'so Seabiscuit directed itself'? jibes. Peter Jackson should get it simply for the sheer scale of the work he did on those films. Seven years. Seven.

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Best actor
Johnny Depp - Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Sir Ben Kingsley - House of Sand and Fog, Jude Law - Cold Mountain, Bill Murray - Lost in Translation, Sean Penn - Mystic River

I'm saying Bill Murray because again it's the only one I've seen. If Depp wins wouldn't it be funny if he sent Keith Richards up to accept it ala Brando and the Native American girl?

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Best actress
Keisha Castle-Hughes - Whale Rider, Diane Keaton - Something's Gotta Give, Samantha Morton - In America, Charlize Theron - Monster, Naomi Watts - 21 Grams

This is making me look really bad. I haven't seen any of the films in this category, but in my defence only two of them have been out here. So they can give it to any of them.

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Best supporting actor
Alec Baldwin - The Cooler, Benicio Del Toro - 21 Grams, Djimon Hounsou - In America, Tim Robbins - Mystic River, Ken Watanabe - The Last Samurai

This is making me look really bad. I haven't seen any of the films in this category, but in my defence only three of them have been out here. So they can give it to any of them.

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Best supporting actress
Shohreh Aghdashloo - House of Sand and Fog, Patricia Clarkson - Pieces of April, Marcia Gay Harden - Mystic River, Holly Hunter - Thirteen, Renee Zellweger - Cold Mountain

This is making me look really bad. I haven't seen any of the films in this category, but in my defence only four of them have been out here. Oh.

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Best foreign language film
The Barbarian Invasions, Evil, The Twilight Samurai, Twin Sisters, Zelary

This is making me look really bad. I haven't seen any of the films in this category, but in my defence none of them have been out here. So nyer. I saw a trailer for Barbarians other night though. That looked quite good. Give it to them.

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Best animated feature film
Brother Bear, Finding Nemo, The Triplets of Belleville

Wierd seeing Belleville Rendevue on the list when it was on TV here the other night (so that's waiting to be watched). What the hell's Brother Bear doing there? Give it to Nemo for goodness sake.

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Best adapted screenplay
American Splendor, City of God, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Mystic River, Seabiscuit

Quite how you compare the work which must have happened on Splendor to Rings I'm not sure. But they should give it to the latter simply for managing not to piss off the Tolkein purists too much whilst also having a comprehensible and entertaining film.

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Best original screenplay
The Barbarian Invasions, Dirty Pretty Things, Finding Nemo, In America, Lost in Translation

Always an odd catagory because what makes these scripts any better or worse than anything else which has been out this year? Plus the script for Translation repuledly featured scenes which said things like 'Bill says something funny here'.

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Best music (score)
Big Fish, Cold Mountain, Finding Nemo, House of Sand and Fog, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King

Rings. Howard Shore is a genius.

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Best music (song)
'Into the West' - The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, 'A Kiss at the End of the Rainbow' - A Mighty Wind, 'Scarlet Tide' - Cold Mountain, 'The Triplets of Belleville' - The Triplets of Belleville, 'You Will Be My Ain True Love' - Cold Mountain

I'm seeing it next week but I suspect they should give it to A Might Wind.

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Best documentary feature
Balseros, Capturing the Friedmans, The Fog of War, My Architect, The Weather Underground

Lots of good stuff appearing on BBC Four next year then...

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Best documentary short subject
Asylum, Chernobyl Heart, Ferry Tales

How do the Academy vote for these? Do they have special screens, do they appear before other films? How does this work?

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Best visual effects
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World,
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Rings. They really are snubbing The Matrix aren't they?

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Best cinematography
City of God, Cold Mountain, Girl with a Pearl Earring, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Seabiscuit

What no Rings? Earing did some excellent work with evoking a time and Vermeer's paintings so I'll choose that.

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Best art direction
Girl with a Pearl Earring, The Last Samurai, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Seabiscuit

Rings.

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Best animated short film
Boundin', Destino, Gone Nutty, Harvie Krumpet, Nibbles

Rings. Oh it's not nominated. How do the Academy vote for these? Do they have special screens, do they appear before other films? How does this work?

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Best short film
Die Rote Jacke (The Red Jacket), Most (The Bridge), Squash, Torrzija, Two Soldiers

How do the Academy vote for these? Do they have special screens, do they appear before other films? How does this work?

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Best costume design
Girl with a Pearl Earring, The Last Samurai, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Seabiscuit

I know it seems very unfair saying Rings all the time, but frankly there was so much in here which hadn't been done before, so innovative in so many places that it doesn't compare to the period details elsewhere. Although Earring was magical.

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Best make-up
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World,
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Rings. Again.

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Best sound
The Last Samurai, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Seabiscuit

Rings. Again. The olyphants made the cinema shake as they stomped about.

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Sound editing
Finding Nemo, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

Nemo.

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Film Editing
City of God, Cold Mountain, The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, Seabiscuit

Rings. New Zealand should declare war on the US if Lord of the Rings doesn't win everything basically.

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