OSCAR PREDICTIONS 2008
I haven't seen all the nominated movies so can't really be too comprehensive, but here are a few that I feel almost certain about.
Best actor: There really doesn't seem to be any other option except Daniel Day Lewis for "There Will be Blood". Almost no other actor I know brings such intensity to his performances and inhabits his characters so thoroughly. I read somewhere that Day Lewis is a very selective actor, doing about three movies per decade. I have enjoyed every one of his movies that I have seen. His last portrayal of Bill the Butcher in "Gangs of New York" was absolutely mesmerizing. I heard that he actually spent a few weeks apprenticed to a butcher to get into the meat-chopper's skin.
This year, Day Lewis's competition also looks rather tame. Viggo Mortensen in "Eastern Promises" and Johnny Depp in "Sweeney Todd" were very good, but not outstanding in my opinion. So was Tommy Lee-Jones in "In the Valley of Elah". The only serious competitor could be George Clooney in "Michael Clayton", but I just don't think he could beat Day Lewis's extraordinary portrayal of a cold-hearted oil tycoon.
Best Animated Film: Ratatouille. Period.
Best documentary: "Sicko" should win for social awareness creation. But I heard "No end in sight" about another American blunder is also pretty good.
Best Film: Can't say, mainly because I have not seen "No Country for Old Men". By all accounts, it seems very likely to win. Also did not see "Juno" which is supposed to be excellent too.
Roger Ebert's predictions