May 18, 2007

UMA 2006: Part II

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY


Vilmos Zsigmond for The Black Dahlia
A beautifully constructed game of wide-screen one-up-manship. Many downright amazing shots (that discovery sequence!) and a modern take on noir.


Emmanuel Lubezki for Children of Men
Lubezki continues to improve, with Children of Men being his finest camera work yet. Fascinating use of long-takes that takes the camera places you would never think possible.


David Williamson for Jindabyne
Showing a keen eye with it's subtly zooms and widescreen framing, Williamson's camera has a curious wandering eye for details both interior and exterior. Should I be looking at what he's telling me to? Hmmm...


Wally Pfister for The Prestige
Sublime use of natural lighting makes the atmosphere of The Prestige feel warm and mysterious. Definitely a DP to watch out for.


Jeong-hun Jeong for Sympathy for Lady Vengeance
Turning a downbeat tale of painful revenge into a work of beauty. Even simple sights of snow falling in a Korean street have a bewitching quality in this challenging film.


Honourable Mentions: Lance Acord strikes just the right vibe in Marie Antoinette. Dion Beebe continues to demonstrate why he is one of the top two DPs working right now. "Peter Andrews" makes The Good German feel like a classy relic. Guillermo Navarro uses that delectable colour palate in Pan's Labyrinth while Barry Ackroyd has great control of director Greengrass' trademark shaky cam. Benoît Delhomme and Nick Matthews provide smooth clean work on Breaking and Entering and 2:37 respectively. Ian Jones works both black+white and colour supurbly in Ten Canoes.

And while I don't consider it particularly worthy (certainly over some other titles I didn't mention) but I was fascinated by Chris Menges' work on Notes on a Scandal because it was as if he took every single opportunity he could to include stairs in his shots. From above, from below, from the side, from weird 45degree angles. Stairs everywhere. I wonder if it was intentional?


GOLD
Emmanuel Lubezki for Children of Men
SILVER
Vilmos Zsigmond for The Black Dahlia
BRONZE
David Williamson for Jindabyne


BEST COSTUME DESIGN


Chung Man Yee
Curse of the Golden Flower
Nigh on jaw-dropping in how detailed Yee's costumes were. I had a blast trying to follow the labyrinth that the patterns made on their hosts.



Patricia Field
The Devil Wears Prada
Thinking ahead, Field had to pick the next season's hottest outfits and then tailor them for the clothes horse characters. And, yes, they're drool-worthy too.



Sharen Davis
Dreamgirls
It's a tricky task to bridge the gap between Broadway theatric costumes and historically accurate, but Davis works it with aplomb. Divine duds.



Jane Johnston
Macbeth
Utterly captivating embroidered suits for the men and dresses that drip off of Lady Macbeth. The costumes in this modern day Shakespeare are fantasy, horror, comedy and theatrical all in one.


Milena Canonero
Marie Antoinette
Overstuffed and overflowing with gorgeous designs and character-suited to a tee. Clearly having a ball with the subject matter, Canonero goes so far that she circles back on herself.


Honourable Mentions: Jenny Beavan lets the children roam wild in mummy and daddy's closet in The Black Dahlia. Joan Bergin turns the magicians of The Prestige into celebrities of their times. Lala Huete designs an amazing mix in Pan's Labyrinth. Melinda Doring makes the costumes of Suburban Mayhem so character-oriented. Sammy Sheldon gives V for Vendetta some of it's only decent work, while Penny Rose continues to outfit the Pirates of the Caribbean with style. Julie Weiss and Joan Dunn give the characters of Bobby and Factory Girl plenty to play around in.


GOLD
Patricia Field for The Devil Wears Prada
SILVER
Milena Canonero for Marie Antoinette
BRONZE
Jane Johnston for Macbeth


**Let it be known that any of the five nominees would have been a worthy winner. This is the closest to an eenie-meenie-minie-moe vote you're gonna get.**


BEST EDITING

Thelma Schoonmaker for The Departed
The queen of editing throws another notch onto her belt, giving The Departed the kick it needs to overcome excessive length, perfectly in tune with the action and dialogue.


Jon Harris for The Descent
Biding it's time oh so effortlessly, the near-excrutiating amount of time we have to wait for the real terror to begin is handled with care, while the action is frantic but well put together.


Karl Sodersten for Jindabyne
Making only his second go at editing (the first was Ray Lawrence's 2001 film Lantana), demonstrates again that he can make it all look so simple and carefree.


Sarah Flack for Dave Chappelle's Block Party and Marie Antoinette
Getting into the groove of Chappelle's block party and Coppolla's pop video-biopic, Flack earns her stripes this year with these two amazing efforts.


Clare Douglas, Richard Pearson and Christopher Rouse for United 93
Intricately putting the pieces together in Greengrass' real-time docudrama. They are as important to the film's ultimate success, perhaps even moreso (?), as Greengrass. Amazing work.


Honourable Mentions: I felt bad leaving Tania Nehme off for her splendid work with Ten Canoes. Alez Rodrigues and Alfonso Cuaron make every second count in Children of Men. Mark Livolsi gave The Devil Wears Prada an effortless air of cool. Lisa Gunning and Eric Gautier move Breaking and Entering and Clean along at a breezy speed respectively. Christian Gazal did very impressive work with the animated Happy Feet, Stuart Baird can be proud with his work on Casino Royale. Nick Matthews, Dale Roberts and Murali K Thalluri aped Elephant in 2:37, but it's still a great job technically.


GOLD
The Three Magicians for United 93
SILVER
Sarah Flack for Dave Chappelle's Block Party and Marie Antoinette
BRONZE
Jon Harris for The Descent


BEST MAKE UP AND HAIR STYLING


Nicki Ledermann and Angel de Angelis
The Devil Wears Prada
If for nothing else but Meryl's silver wig and Emily's magic eye-shadow, but there's so much more there it's hard to point it all out. Why must all makeup be making stars ugly?!



Unspecific/Various
Dreamgirls
I'm not sure who is classes as the main ones, but they did fine period/broadway work whoever it was. All those wigs (y'all know they were wigs) and fine makeup work, making the fab look even fabber.


Jean-Luc Russier and Desiree Corridoni
Marie Antoinette
As Marie's wigs get higher, wider and just all-round more exotic, so do does the make-up and hair branch work harder. It's a laughing matter in the film, but they do amazing work.



David Martí and Montse Ribé
Pan's Labyrinth
Imaginative and wholly original work on a wide variety of areas. There's the knockout prosthetics work of Pan and Pale Man, plus the icky blood and skin stuff that is the work of horror films.


Ve Neill and Joel Harlow
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
Fantastical work on this Pirate sequel more than matches the work on the original. It's hard to determine how much is prosthetics and how much is special effects, but it's very wow no matter.


Honourable Mentions: The mutants of The Hills Have Eyes and The Descent sure did look, well, like mutants (plus, all that blood sure was red). The Notorious Bettie Page had wonderfully kitsch hair and makeup. The Queen didn't convince me I wasn't watching Helen Mirren, but it was fine work all the same.

And, weren't the mile-high frizzy hairstyles of Maggie Cheung and Yeong-ae Lee in Clean and Lady Vengeance just sort of fascinating and amazing?


GOLD
Pan's Labyrinth
SILVER
Marie Antoinette
BRONZE
The Devil Wears Prada



BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN


Dante Ferretti for The Black Dahlia
All sharp hard-edged designs. The beautiful is actually quite ugly and the ugly is, if not beautiful, then certainly beguiling. Such a paradox.


Jim Clay and Geoffrey Kirkland for Children of Men
So well designed that you probably missed most of it upon first viewing. Everything from a rubbish-strewn street to a large-screen television on a skyscraper. All so detailed and well-designed.


David McKay for Macbeth
Just like the rest of the film, the production design is so over-the-top that it becomes humourously endearing (to me). Bonkers and extreme sensory-overload.


Eugenio Caballero for The Prestige
The reality scenes are beautifully crafted and period-focused, but the fantasy sequences are a veritable smorgasboard of haunting, jaw-dropping and imagination-stretching designs.


Nathan Crowley for The Prestige
Elaborate and engaging art direction and complicated but character-giving set decoration, these magicians may be the celebrities of their day but the contrasts between on-stage and off is magic to watch.


Honourable Mentions: The team behind Curse of the Golden Flower's opulant design are to be applauded. It's a shock that it didn't cause blindness. The Good German used backlots wonderfully. Marie Antoinette was well-served by Verseilles. Flushed Away and Cars had imaginative designs for animated films. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest had more fun tricks up it's design sleeve, while V For Vendetta had some moody and effective sets to run amok in.


GOLD
Pan's Labyrinth
SILVER
Children of Men
BRONZE
Macbeth



BEST VISUAL EFFECTS


Frazer Churchill, Tim Webber, Mike Eames and Paul Corbould for Children of Men
Subtle and completely story-serving effects. They got it just right. It really does feel like it's only 20 years into the future.


Jeremy Dawson, Dan Schrecker, Mark Soper and Peter Parks for The Fountain
Hallucinogenic and eye-popping visuals. The storyline set in Space is obviously the key one and it positively explodes with visual glitter and magic dust. A crowning achievement.


Rose Draper and Mike Seymour for Hunt Angels
Inserting the film's stars into actual photographs and intergrating it into 3D computer generated sets. Sounds impressive, looks it too.


John Knoll, Hal T Hickel, Charles Gibson and Allen Hall for Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
Impressive all-encompassing work from these trusty effects wizards. They've thrown everything in plus the kitchen sink, but what a pretty shiny sink!


Boyd Shermis, Kim Libreti, Chas Jarrett and John Frazier for Poseidon
The technical stuff of Posiedon was the only stuff to not raise guffaws from me. The visual effects most of all were well-utilised and thankfully actually quite minimal compared to what could have been.


Honourable Mentions: Pan's Labyrinth had some creepy impressive CGI. Night at the Museum and X-Men 3 had lots of gee-whiz effects. Superman Returns's effects were about as boring as the film, but they were still impressive.


GOLD
The Fountain
SILVER
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
BRONZE
Hunt Angels



BEST ORIGINAL SCORE


Mark Isham
The Black Dahlia
Big, bold and completely in love with the visual and aural aesthetics of the movie, Isham shows why he's a film composer to keep an eye, er, an ear on.



Clint Mansell and Moguai
The Fountain
An epic film score that proves to be both entirely suited to Aronofsky's vision and to being a standalone album full of atmosphere and scary beats.



Thomas Newman
The Good German and Little Children
Two entirely effective scores that are polar-opposite in terms of arrangements. German was all lush orchastras while Children was delicate. Love.


Tomandandy
The Hills Have Eyes
One of the scariest things I experienced last year was listening to this score. Filled with electronic beeps and distorted wails, this score really got me into the flick.


Alexandre Desplat
The Painted Veil and The Queen
The former is all romantic strings and jazzy instrumental torch ballads, while the latter is, at times overly fussy, but ultimately charming. A nice twofer from the best film composer there is atm.


Honourable Mentions: Paul Kelly (with Dan Luscombe) and Randy Newman hit the right twangy notes for Jindabyne and Cars respectively. David Julyan gave The Prestige and The Descent effective backup through the speakers. Alberto Iglesias is enchanting with Volver's music. Javier Navarette mixed light and dark wonderfully for Pan's Labyrinth. Dario Marianeli was a surprise, but welcome, addition to Opal Dream.


GOLD
Clint Mansell and Moguai for The Fountain
SILVER
Tomandandy for The Hills Have Eyes
BRONZE
Alexandre Desplat for The Painted Veil and The Queen


BEST ORIGINAL SONG

(The only major category with six nominees, sorry. If you notice, the images are from the respective scenes so don't get confused. Except for the first and last, which were "credit songs")

"Don't Forget Me"
2:37
Performed by Chloe Moldovan
Haunting elegy to close this confounding movie. Perfectly encapsulates what 2:37 is about.



"Our Town"
Cars
Performed by James Taylor
Aww, this song gets me every time I listen to it. I love it's unabashed old-fashioned sentimentality. Hey, sorta just like the movie itself. Fancy that.


"Listen"
Dreamgirls
Performed by Beyoncé Knowles
Even if the lyrics are a bit dodgy as if they've been in the basement too long, Beyonce's powerful delivery make this a song very much worth remembering.


"Love You I Do"
Dreamgirls
Performed by Jennifer Hudson
A wonderful case of song-acting-as-exposition. "Love You I Do" is a delightful and entertaining song that mixes the Broadway spirit with Motown/pop charm.


"Jindabyne Fair"
Jindabyne
Performed by Katie Brianna & The Stormwater Boys
Just an all-around wonderful song that you may not have noticed playing in the opening scene. Full of spirit, offsetting the tragedy that's about to occur.


"Keep Holding On"
Eragon
Performed by Avril Lavigne
Okay, so this is pure guilty pleasure I suppose. But this lush mix of strings and guitars is effectively rousing with you-can-do-it spirit. Whatever, y'all love it too!


Honourable Mentions: "In The End" and "Soda Shop" were great additions to Shortbus. "Patience" was superfluous in Dreamgirls, but still a great song. I wish a studio recording of "The Way That I Love You" from Jindabyne was done because the song is nice but the film version on the soundtrack is, well, you know. "How It Ends" from Little Miss Sunshine is a nice example of how to make an unobvious original. "The Neighbour" was a nice new effort for Shut Up and Sing, while "Song of the Heart" from Happy Feet was sweet. "Oh Kazakhstan" from Borat was... well, it was damn funny.

And before you ask, no. No I don't think "I Need to Wake Up" is a good song. I think it's lazy and sorta dull and about as subtle as a sledgehammer. Doesn't hold anything to Melissa Etheridge's best work.


GOLD
2:37, "Don't Forget Me" (listen to it here)
SILVER
Dreamgirls, "Love You I Do"
BRONZE
Dreamgirls, "Listen"


BEST SOUND DESIGN



2:37
Atmospheric and moody. Sublime.







The Fountain
Cacophonous and expressive. Very much "surround sound".






Happy Feet
Mixing action and music. The sound is everywhere and beats you over the head.






Miami Vice
Not sure who said it, but I agree: Why haven't I heard gunshots like that before?






Pan's Labyrinth
That score sure does ring through while the silence is deafening.




Honourable Mentions: I enjoyed picking out the sounds of individual floorboards creaking and such in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. Monster House had fun with it's premise and the sounds it entails. United 93's sound design recreated the static and the chaos. Dave Chappelle's Block Party made me wanna be there in so many ways. Children of Men effectively played with the sound. Aussie flicks Ten Canoes and Macbeth both had destinctive sound designs. Dreamgirls' sound was great, but weren't the shifts between dialogue and studio-recorded music quite disconcerting? I loved the background sounds of Little Children and the upfront grunt of Cars.


GOLD
Miami Vice (seriously, those gun shots were WOW)
SILVER
Happy Feet
BRONZE
2:37


BEST SOUND EFFECTS EDITING



Casino Royale








Macbeth








Miami Vice








Monster House








Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest







Honourable Mentions: I seriously considered putting Snakes on a Plane in there for hissing shits and giggles. Cars and Superman Returns had very fine blockbuster work as well. Night at the Museum was all chaos and noise so I think it had some good sound editing. All those voices and animal noises and things that go bump. Right?


GOLD
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
SILVER
Monster House
BRONZE
Miami Vice

10 comments:

RC said...

yea, i'm surprised children of men hasn't picked up and UMA yet...

i was also surprised your line-up you teased earlier in the week was exactly how you played it out...dench and all.

Your list and awards have been great so far.

Kamikaze Camel said...

Okay, I should confess about that best actress thing. Dench was out, but then I was watching this clip off Cate Blanchett on Letterman and the clip they showed had tonnes of Dench and I remembered how great she was. So she went back in at the last minute.

julia said...

Who was in instead?

Kamikaze Camel said...

I had Maggie Cheung in there for Clean although I did tease the idea of Kate Winslet.

J.D. Judge said...

Well, at least you have the majority of yours done already. My Best Actress' 5 (maybe 6...?) nomination slots are filled with 13 women!! And I don't know who'll make it! I really don't! The only one I do know is the one that won it, since she CANNOT be beat. Oh, and it's a performance that apparently I'm the only one who's seen her in action. (muahahaha) Well, more than Radha Mitchell. That one I'm sure I'm the only one.

J.D. Judge said...

And honestly I'm a little disappointed you don't have Pan's in Score. Saw it yesterday (or two days ago, or whatever) and it was an incredible movie with excellence in almost every field, but I was especially impressed with the music. And then I saw The Painted Veil (HAH! lol). Actress is jumbled like I said, but also in the screenplays, most of the technicals and the artistic awards, especially score. I can honestly say I do not between Pan's and TPV who has better music. And The Fountain was the winner for a while, but now... [explodes]

Kamikaze Camel said...

The Fountain is clearly the only score from this year worthy of the win. Everything else is just filler.

(great filler, but filler nonetheless. that score was amazing)

J.D. Judge said...

I still feel sad for having to kick out "Keep Holding On" from Song... :[

James Henry said...

Finally, someone who agrees with me that "I Need to Wake Up" is not a good song and nowhere in the same league as "Listen" (which should have won the damn Oscar).

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