I was a little hard on the International Press Academy last year, but they made some ridiculous decisions when handing out their Satellite Awards. Still, at least they came off as being different than every other year-end awards giver by picking winners like Joseph Cross and X-Men: The Last Stand (best comedic actor and best editing, respectively). Those are at least some interesting, unpredictable picks, right? This year, I feel the need to be harder on the organization, because it's gone totally predictable in honoring No Country for Old Men, Juno, Sicko, American Gangster, Ratatouille, Diablo Cody and Christopher Hampton, among others. The actors they honored -- Marion Cotillard, Viggo Mortensen, Ellen Page, Ryan Gosling, Tom Wilkinson/Casey Affleck (tied) and Amy Ryan -- aren't all the most obvious choices, but they aren't shocking, either. Couldn't they have at least gone with nominee Clive Owen or his nominated "comedy or musical" Shoot 'Em Up (!?!?!?), or something?

Not that the winners aren't deserving, but what good is yet another awards ceremony if it's not going to distinguish itself from the Golden Globes, which are the Satellite's unrecognized yet unmistakable "baby daddy". Yeah, the Hollywood Foreign Press will likely go with some other winners, but they won't seem that different. Again, I do salute the IPA for having a documentary category, though it wouldn't have hurt to give The King of Kong its one possible prestigious(?) award -- not that it was actually a better film than fellow nominee No End in Sight. Also, it's always enjoyable to see what the IPA picks for best DVDs (The Prestige for overall; Borat and Masters of Horror Season 1 (tied) for extras; Ratatouille for youth-oriented; Ken Burns' The War for documentary; The Graduate 40th Anniversary Edition for classic). For the rest of the nominees and winners, head over to Variety.
CATEGORIES Awards, Cinematical