Cate Blanchett American Hustle
FRONTRUNNER: Cate Blanchett
Blue Jasmine is a difficult film to sit through and not because it features director Woody Allen’s typical dialogue rife with sophisticated references and witty, high class retorts. No, Blue Jasmine is a difficult film to sit through because at its core it offers viewers a woman that’s rapidly spiraling out of control. It offers a selfish, manipulative and oblivious former socialite who is every bit as hard to root for as she is honest and complicated. Thanks to Allen’s tribute at the Globes, there has recently been quite a bit of talk about how complicated and fascinating Woody’s women typically are. I’m not going to say Jasmine is the best he’s ever given us, but in Blanchette’s capable hands, she deserves to be at least mentioned.

At this point, it’s easier to count the number of Best Actress awards Blanchett has lost over the past few months (4) than it is to count the number of honors she’s won (more than 30). Altogether, that’s enough to make her a prohibitive favorite to take home her second statue and first for Best Actress. If you’re filling out a pool and you go with Blanchett, this should be one of your safest categories, but as we’ve found out dozens of times in the past, every now and again defeat gets snatched from the jaws of assumed victory.

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