Ross Murray's Border Report
Ross Murray
Ross Murray
is a freelance writer living in Stanstead, Quebec. You can reach him at
Posted 02.05.05
Stanstead, Quebec


And why isn't Shaun of the Dead nominated?

Haven't been to the movies lately? Feeling left out of the Oscar buzz because you have no idea what the movies are about? Don't know where to wager your kids' education fund? Don't worry; it's easy to pick the Oscar winners, even if you haven't seen the films.

Best Actor

Don Cheadle: Don Cheadle, Don Cheadle… the name sounds familiar. Wasn't he the announcer on "Saturday Night Live"? No wait, that was Don Pardo. Sorry. Yes, Don Cheadle. Uhhh… never heard of him.

Johnny Depp: Oscar history shows that no actor has ever won an Academy Award who was named after a hair gel. Depp will win some day but not this year. Eventually he'll get one of those "Let's give the quirky but reliable actor the Oscar before he's dead" awards when he reprises his roll as Captain Jack Sparrow for the 11th time in 2052's Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Massive Kidney Stone.

Leonardo DiCaprio: Punk.

Clint Eastwood: The guy who co-starred with an orangutan (not to mention Sondra Locke) is now an auteur. He's already won Best Picture, Best Director, and the Lifetime Achievement sop. He's just short the Best Actor. On the other hand, if he wins it, all he'll have left to go for is Best Song, and we don't want him going down THAT road again.

Jamie Foxx: As Ray Charles, Foxx has everything going for him: juicy biography, great music, tortured soul, drug use, and a physical disability. Oscar lo-o-oves physical disabilities and we haven't had a good one for some time, unless you count Charlize Theron's self-uglification and Nicole Kidman's nose. Plus, lip-synching is oh-so-hot right now.

And the winner is: Eastwood. He's a crowd favourite and, let's face it, even at 104, he still probably scares the crap out of most Academy voters.

Best Actress

Annette Bening: She's talented, she's beautiful, she's a workhorse. No one saw the movie. Next.

Catalina Sandino Moreno: Oscar history shows that no actress has ever won an Academy Award who was named after a salad dressing.

Imelda Staunton: You know it's been a skimpy year for female roles when…

Hilary Swank: In Million Dollar Baby, Hilary Swank reprises the role of her breakout hit The Next Karate Kid. Yeah, Hilary, it's all about treading familiar ground: feisty girl struggling in a man's world. Didn't we already see this in Boys Don't Cry? And didn't we see you struggling with this thing called "acting" in The Core? And is "Swank" your real name or are you just putting us on?

Kate Winslet: I actually saw Eternal Sunshine and I'm convinced this may be an Oscar nod for Best Use of Hair Colour to Offer Viewers Some Reference in a Convoluted Chronology. Winslet is a fine, courageous actress and she can do that British/American accent thing. She's been nominated for her acting before but has never won. She may suffer the Titanic curse: having to be on a first-name basis with that punk DiCaprio.

And the winner is: Kate Winslet, if only for valiantly, if barely, managing to keep her breasts in check for once.

Best Picture

The Aviator Finding Neverland/I>: Movie about the author of Peter Pan. Yeah right…

Ray: Fails to meet our expectations of a musical bio-pic in that no one dies in a tragic plane crash.

Million Dollar Baby: It's got heart, it's got an underdog, it's got action. But the producers failed to adhere to one of the cardinal rules of movie-making: if you're going to have girls fight, they must be wearing bikinis.

Sideways: Film about lumpy, middle-aged losers. May resonate with Academy voters.

And the winner is: Million Dollar Baby, 'cause we feel lucky, punk.