by Rob Boylan
There is very little chance for a surprise when the envelope is opened up for this award on Sunday. Octavia Spencer has been the frontrunner basically since The Help opened up in the summer.
I remember seeing the trailer for it before Bridesmaids and not expecting to hear much about it after its run, and that's why my career as amateur groundhog never went pro. We heard and heard and heard and heard about The Help ever since. Pros, cons, parody, complaints, plaudits.
It's already won Golden Globes and SAG awards, and so, if you have too much money and want to give some of it away you could bet on one of the other four nominees here I suppose. I'll happily take your bet.
I actually found Bejo to be more charming in the film than I did Jean Dujardin or Uggie, to be honest. She has such a great face, especially for this part, but the film failed to capture me in the same way it seems to have captured a lot of Hollywood hearts.
Of all of the 534 roles Jessica Chastain had this year, they went ahead and nominated the least interesting one. In The Help, she was almost in a different picture, so separated from everyone but Minny as she was. The bitterest part of it to swallow is that she was completely amazing, lovely and wonderful in The Tree of Life. Damn youse guys.
I'd be lying if I said I didn't bust my gut laughing at this, though I thought McCarthy's character was in a bit of a wider comedy orbit than anyone else in the film. For me, though, it was the other characters who could have gone further, to join McCarthy out there. (Clip slightly NWS.)
Albert Nobbs was a bit of a tough film to swallow, both because we know who is who and because, Jaysus, how fookin' depressing. McTeer was great in it, and you can't take that away, but the film was really all about Glenn Close and her transformation into Albert, which hurts McTeer's candidacy, probably fatally.
The Help was a lot better than I was expecting it to be, but I didn't think it was all that great, certainly not worthy of the attention its getting in awards. However, Octavia Spencer -- and her terrible, no good, bad deed -- was the most enjoyable part of the whole thing. I'm not sure if its down to the acting or the absurdity layered over the role, but I liked it either way.
The Descision: Octavia Spencer. The award already engraved with her name, and I can't argue with it.