Ask what the hell the folks at USC were thinking when they didn’t nominate “Little Children” for a Scripter and how in the world the Academy is going to see all of the movies it has to see before the polls close on Saturday.   Sure, we debate the big stuff too – including why Clint Eastwood’s a baby and why Chiwetel Ejiofor is one of the best actors working today.  We play favorites – Patrick Marber, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Spike Lee, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu  – to name a few and we mess with such nonsense as who will make the National Board of Review (it’s the first).  This is not serious (except when we’re talking about why we’re not ready for the 9-11 films, or how Rinko Kikuchi was both brilliant and terrifying in “Babel”).

Lately, me and my band of movie geeks have been talking cinematography and writing. These two guilds announce their nominations tomorrow.  Here are my thoughts along with Armchair Critic’s.  Yes, this is what movie geeks do.

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Cinematography
BSR: “Children of Men,” “Dreamgirls,” “Babel,” “The Departed,” “The Painted Veil.”  Alt. “Letters from Iwo Jima,” “Apocalypto”
AC: “Babel,” “Pan’s Labyrinth,” “The Painted Veil,” “The Good German,” “Letters from Iwo Jima/Flags of Our Fathers.”  Alt. “The Queen,” “Dreamgirls”

Best Original Screenplay
BSR: “Little Miss Sunshine,” “The Queen,” “Pan’s Labyrinth,” “Babel,” “Volver.”  Alt. “Letters from Iwo Jima.”
AC: “Little Miss Sunshine,” “The Queen,” “Pan’s Labyrinth,” “Babel,” “Letters from Iwo Jima”  Alt.  “Stranger than Fiction,” “Volver”

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Best Adapted Screenplay
BSR: “The Departed,” “Notes on a Scandal,” “Dreamgirls,” “Children of Men,” “Little Children.”  Alt.  “Thank You for Smoking,” “The Devil Wears Prada”
AC: “The Departed,” “Thank You for Smoking,” “Little Children,” “Children of Men,” “The Devil Wears Prada.”  Alt.  “Notes on a Scandal,” “Dreamgirls”

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