Oscar 2012: Best Writing (Adapted Screenplay) Race

Over the next few weeks (when I feel like it and get through the remainder of the Oscar nominees) I will examine each of the races in the top eight categories. I am in no way trying to keep this objective or subjective; like with everything else in this blog, I’m writing what I think and don’t really filter it.

The Nominees
The Descendants
The Ides of March
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

More and more things are being adapted in Hollywood each year, making his category increasingly more competitive. Some point to a lack of originality in Hollywood, I just think that studios have become leery of investing $100 million in a story with no built-in audience.

Four of the five nominees are Best Picture nominees, and the fifth is a political thriller, which certainly should and did resonate with the Hollywood establishment. The polar opposite of the Best Director category, the writing sections (combined) shed light on nominees that came close to a Best Picture nom, but just missed the cut.

Will Win: Moneyball. This will be the second win in as many years for co-writer Aaron Sorkin, who is among my favorite writers (actually, IS my favorite) of any medium. So if I’m being biased here, then fine. But seriously, anyone who could get that human of a story out of that source material is a genius; even author Michael Lewis thought the book was unfilmable.

Should Win: Moneyball, no question. Though I’d probably put The Descendants in second place. Looking forward to reading that book to see what the source looked like.

Snubbed: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, pt. 2 and The Help, tied. Both were superb adaptations; staying true to the source material while bringing something new to it as well.

Overhyped: Tinker, Taylor, Solider, Spy. Yes, it was a tightly wound film which was one of the more intelligent spy stories to come down the pike lately. However, they could have done just a bit more to make the different timelines a bit easier to discern and separate the flashbacks from the reality.