Precious picks for Oscar pics
You may fight against the notion, but, despite there still being five months to the ceremony, Oscar-musing season properly begins when the Toronto Film Festival wheezes to a halt. This year’s event, which ended on Sunday, offered one undeniable pointer towards the Academy Awards.
Lee Daniels’s Precious, an adaptation of Sapphire’s influential novel Push, won the People’s Choice Award and became the first film ever to claim both that prize and the Audience Award at Sundance. Given that there are now 10 nominees for best picture, Precious is nearly certain to get shortlisted.
Several Irish films were screened at the festival, with Neil Jordan’s Ondine and Margaret Corkery’s impressive Eamon receiving particularly good notices. Calling the latter a “small but perfectly formed pic” , the trade paper Variety said it “plays like the offspring of Aki Kaurismaki and Todd Solondz”.
Speaking of female directors, Toronto kicked up another diverting Oscar-related possibility. With Lone Scherfig’s An Education and Jane Campion’s Bright Star joining Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker in the critical-rave drawer, it is now very possible that three out of the five nominees for best director might be women. Just possible, mind.