Continuing my Oscar predictions, now that I've seen the live-action and animated shorts nominees...
- Pentecost, Peter McDonald and Eimear O'Kane
- Raju, Max Zähle and Stefan Gieren
- The Shore, Terry George and Oorlagh George
- Time Freak, Andrew Bowler and Gigi Causey
- Tuba Atlantic, Hallvar Witzø
The opinion was unanimous in my group of friends: Tuba Atlantic should win this one. When I tell you it's the story of an elderly man who's told by his doctor that he'll only live six more days, you might assume it's a heavy-handed or sentimental examination of life and death. It's actually a biting comedy about a grumpy old man who wants to spend his final days finishing one last project, forced to deal with the interruptions of a teenage girl who claims to be his angel of death. Funny, and just the right amount of pathos.
It's more difficult to predict the winner from this year's animated shorts. As usual, Pixar stands out from the crowd with La Luna, full of whimsy and magic. And while siding with Pixar seems like the easy and obvious way to win an Oscar pool, that was not the case last year... although La Luna is sweeter and more awe-inspiring than last year's more cerebral and clever Day & Night. So Pixar might get the win this year.
Helby thinks Fantastic Flying Books has a good chance, while I found its message so thick you could choke on it. Instead, I'm looking at Wild Life to win. This was the second time I'd seen it, and it's the type of movie that reveals more layers on repeat viewings. Based on true incidents, it's the story of a rich, young Englishman who finds himself in over his head while living off family money in Canada.
The short film nominees may be available On Demand through your cable provider or through iTunes if you're interested in watching them and making your own guesses about who will win.