There is something truly skewed and bent out of shape about Best Actor contender Cillian “I walked with a zombie” Murphy having more predictive support from your damp-finger-to-the-wind Oscar spitballers (largely due to the fact that Oppenheimer surprised everyone by becoming a huge financial success) than The HoldoversPaul Giamatti, who gives a wonderfully snippy, peculiar, emotionally vulnerable, multi-faceted performance that blows the bloody door off…c’mon!

Plus Giamatti was robbed 19 years ago when his exquisite, time-honored Sideways performance as melancholy “drink and dial” Miles failed to land even a Best Actor nomination. How many times has Sideways been re-watched compared to Taylor Hackford’s Ray, in which Jamie Foxx played Ray Charles and was not only nominated but won the Best Actor trophy? Ray is a good film and Foxx (also nominated the same year for his taxi-driver performance in Collateral **) is excellent in it, but in the intervening years I haven’t given Ray a single solitary re-watch. How many times have I re-watched Sideways since the fall of ‘04? Oh, at least 10 or 12 and probably closer to 15.

** Since late ‘04 I’ve rewatched Collateral at least ten times.