Friday, February 22, 2008

Everybody In the Pool: Razzie Edition

I've always found peoples' interest in Oscar pools to be a little odd. It's not like making picks in sports where most people interested have presumably watched and followed the past efforts of teams and players; and used that (along with a little bit of bias at times) to predict who's going to win. In contrast, most people (outside of professional movie critics and big movie buffs) haven't seen most to many of the films nominated to give any real insight into their predictions. Furthermore, even if you have seen all the movies and have contemplated all the performances, you're most likely not picking the ones you feel deserve to win, but trying to predict the cryptic and mysterious workings of the voters of the Academy. Even many movies critics who post their Oscar picks separate their predictions into "who they personally feel should win" and "what probably would win."

It all seems to add up to a betting situation that's slightly less arbitrary and random than picking bingo numbers or playing Russian roulette. There seems to be little difference in predicting Oscar picks than predicting what the weather man will say in his five day forecast, or who's going to die in a slasher film, or what you'll get in the mail today. So why do we do it? I think deep down, we all just have this inherent desire to predict and wager on events, and the bigger the event the more easily we can find people willing to play along. Overall it's definitely a spice that enhances everything it's applied to; and lord knows we need all the spice we can get to last through that routinely over 4 hour industry circle jerk.

Far be it for me to not play along with the rest of America; I'll be posting up my unresearched, hearsay based, Oscar picks tomorrow, the night before the big event. As for tonight I'll be throwing out my picks for that other major celebration of cinema, the Razzies. Every year the Razzies call out the worst movies of the year, the day before the Oscars, in a nondescript, unglamorous, starless (except for that one time Halle Barry showed up to proudly claim her "Catwoman" award) affair that only gets reported in fluff "oddly enough" or "in other news" segments by lazy news editors. However this year I hope to help in getting it a little bit more coverage and respect by giving out some picks of my own. Who knows...perhaps in the coming years Razzie pools will become all the rage; hey, it's just another opportunity to predict and bet.

So without further ado Victor's 2008 Official Razzie Picks:

Worst Excuse For A Horror Movie
Alien vs. Predator: Requiem
Hannibal Rising
Hostel: Part II
I Know Who Killed Me

Every few years, one movie seems to capture the collective bile of the voters and bring home the lion's share of Razzies; "Basic Instinct 2" last year, "Gigli" in 2003, "Showgirls" in 1995. Judging from my memories of the hateful critical reaction and it's quick exit from the theatres, I have a feeling "I Know Who Killed Me" has reached that special degree of awfulness.

Worst Screenplay
Daddy Day Camp
Epic Movie
I Know Who Killed Me
I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry

Of course the first question that goes through one's mind is: these movies actually had screenplays? As difficult as it is to imagine a human being penning these films, somebody is responsible. I'm going against my instinct for "I Know Who Killed Me" and going with the dynamic duo of Friedberg and Seltzer in "Epic Movie" because any movie written by them should not even be considered written work but merely strings of catchphrases pasted together.

Worst Director
Dennis Dugan - I Pronounce You Chuck & Larry
Roland Joffe - Captivity
Brian Robbins - Norbit
Fred Savage - Daddy Day Camp
Chris Siverston - I Know Who Killed Me

Yes, it is that Fred Savage of Wonder Years fame that directed "Daddy Day Camp." Also, I don't know how many other times it has happened in the past but Roland Joffe now has the dubious distinction of being nominated for a Best Director Oscar (twice!) and a Worst Director Razzie. However, in the end another Golden statue for "I Know Who Killed Me."

Worst Prequel or Sequel
Alien vs. Predator: Requiem
Daddy Day Camp
Evan Almighty
Hannibal Rising
Hostel: Part II

I like the Razzies' dynamic practice of changing and making up new categories year to year. This is an especially pertinent category in a movie year defined by prequels and sequels. This also appears to be one of the most wide open categories in this year's field. I'm going with my gut and picking Daddy Day Camp. At least the other prequels and sequels had tenuously rational excuses for their existence, there is no need whatsoever for Daddy Day Camp.

Worst Remake or Rip-Off

Are We Done Yet? (Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House)
Bratz (Rip-off of the toys)
Epic Movie (Rip-off of every movie it rips off)
I Know Who Killed Me (Hostel, Saw, and the Patty Duke Show)
Who's Your Caddy (Caddy Shack)

The term rip-off in this category is used fairly loosely. Everyone of these seems to be an unintentional rip-off on the part of the filmmakers and there are no actual remakes per se. In another fairly muddled field, I'm just going to have to go with the favorite "IKWKM."

Worst Screen Couple

Jessica Alba & EITHER Hayden Christensen (AWAKE)

Any Combination of Two Totally Air-Headed Characters

Lindsay Lohan & Lindsay Lohan (as The Yang to Her Own Yin)

Eddie Murphy (as Norbit) & EITHER Eddie Murphy (as Mr. Wong)
Eddie Murphy (as Rasputia)

Adam Sandler & EITHER Kevin James
Jessica Biel

This is actually an exceedingly complicated set of scenarios. While Lindsey Lohan's twisted remake of her breakthrough role in the "Parent Trap" deserves much credit, Eddie Murphy has been a long time Razzie favorite. He's not only the king of the annoying multiple role performance, he also has a lot of Razzie history on his side.

Worst Supporting Actress
Jessica Biel – I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry and Next
Carmen Electra – Epic Movie
Eddie Murphy (as Rasputia) - Norbit
Julia Ormond - I Know Who Killed Me
Nicolette Sheridan – Code Name: The Cleaner

I had totally forgotten about "Code Name: The Cleaner." It apparently came out early in 2007. Like Oscar nominees, I imagine that had it come out a few months ago it would have been far more competitive. I'm going to have to go with Eddie again, as ridiculous as it seems for a male to win the worst supporting actress award. Hey, these are the sort of insane results that develop when ranking the worst of the worst.

Worst Supporting Actor
Orlando Bloom - Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End
Kevin James - I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry
Eddie Murphy (as Mr. Wong) - Norbit
Rob Schneider - I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry
Jon Voight - Bratz, National Treasure 2, September Dawn, and Transformers

Well, it's nice to see Jon Voight is hard at work on that second Oscar. For me in the end it came down to Eddie Murphy's embarrassing Asian stereotype role against Rob Schneider's embarrassing Asian stereotype role. Both were terribly offensive, both were Razzie regulars, but I had to go with man with the longer track record.

Worst Actress
Jessica Alba – Awake, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer and Good Luck Chuck
Logan Browning, Janel Parrish, Nathalia Ramos & Skyler Shaye (A Four-for-One Deal!) - Bratz
Elisha Cuthbert - Captivity
Diane Keaton – Because I Said So
Lindsay Lohan (as Aubrey) - I Know Who Killed Me
Lindsay Lohan (as Dakota) – I Know Who Killed Me

This would be a slam dunk for Lindsay Lohan, but I do wonder if her dual nomination would cost her. If it does significantly split up the votes it may very well go to Jessica Alba for the sheer quantity of her work for 2007. I still am optimistic that it will end up being a two way tie with both performances being rightfully awarded.

Worst Actor
Nicolas Cage - Ghost Rider, National Treasure: Book of Secrets, and Next
Jim Carrey – The Number 23
Cuba Gooding, Jr. – Daddy Day Camp and Norbit
Eddie Murphy (as Norbit) - Norbit
Adam Sandler - I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry

That's right I'm calling it; a three out of four acting sweep for Eddie Murphy in "Norbit." He really does deserve all the credit this year, "Norbit" just wouldn't have been "Norbit" without Murphy's omnipresence. If they haven't, they should really give him some sort of life time achievement award for his commitment to Razzie quality work. Although I wonder if his frequent Razzie appearances may have been a factor in his Oscar loss last year.

Worst Picture
Daddy Day Camp
I Know Who Killed Me
I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry

When it finally comes down to the big prize, I stick to my guns in predicting a big Razzie haul for "I Know Who Killed Me." This essentially boils down to a two movie race between "IKWKM" and "Norbit" and I just think that the former has momentum on its side. It also helps a little bit that "IKWKM" was a total flop at the box office, while Norbit was a undeniable hit. In the Razzie world that sort of popular mandate hurts more than it helps.

No comments:

Post a Comment