Here are the nominees for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture:
Anne Hathaway in “Rachel Getting Married”
Angelina Jolie in “Changeling”
Melissa Leo in “Frozen River”
Meryl Streep in “Doubt”
Kate Winslet in “The Reader”
What might happen: Anything. I’m not kidding. Anne Hathaway is clearly establishing herself as the ‘Next Girl’ and her dramatic breakthrough could pull off the upset. Angelina Jolie, love her or hate her, has one Academy Award already under her belt, so it’s not like it would be her first time on the stage. Meryl Streep is…Meryl Streep. This looks like it’s finally Kate Winslet’s year to walk away with the gold man after being nominated so many times. Or…the four powerhouse names could split the vote four ways, opening the door for Melissa Leo to pull off the shocker.
What should happen: From a pure performance point of view, I’d say Anne Hathaway was the most impressive. But more than ever the momentum seems to be swinging the way of Kate Winslet, so look for a repeat of the teary eyed ‘preview’ we got at the Golden Globes.
Who I’m cheering for: I’ve never hidden my ‘mixtape-level’ crush on Kate Winslet. Anybody who could take Wesley Snipes old “I have to have at least one sex scene in this movie” contract, and add in a “I have to get naked” clause, well hey. In all seriousness though, her acting chops keep improving (kind of scary), and even though this feels like a Pacino-esque “Lifetime Achievement” Oscar for an inferior performance, I wouldn’t have a problem with it.