As people have surmised from my other posts, Ratatouille is my easy pick for Best Animated Picture. The movie (temporarily) showed up on my Top Ten Movies of 2007, was one of my recommendations for Best Visual Effects, and is just an all around great movie. The movie is smart and witty, to the point where it’s actually been nominated for an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. How many animated films get that respect?
I have yet to see Persepolis, but it looks quite good and could certainly be a dark horse winner. The problem with this “animated” West Bank film taking home the Academy Award is that adult-only cartoons rarely win Oscars and that few of the voters have probably seen the movie. Ratatouille has been out on DVD for months, guaranteeing that nearly every voter has probably popped it in for a viewing. I would be very surprised if Persepolis beat out Ratatouille, Pixar’s best movie since The Incredibles.
As for Surf’s Up, this is the obligatory third wheel nomination. In actually, the movie, about surfing penguins, is much better than the previews made it out to be, but its documentary-style approach and lack of spectacular visuals won’t resonate as Best Animated Film material.