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Exclusive: George Christy Picks Next Big Oscar Contenders

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Famed Beverly Hills Courier columnist George Christy gives you an insider's peek into Hollywood's A-list parties and personalities.

Our Beverly Hills Courier readership, in point of fact, boasts one of the largest single blocks of Oscar voters. Worth remembering by movie marketing and ad mavens when the annual ballyhoo for “Oscar Consideration” begins this fall for votes. At screenings lately, two films offered hope that we have filmmakers concentrating on character and plot than on indulgent indies, campy crap, and brain-frying blockbusters based on violent video games.

Opening this weekend: An Education, with star-is-born Carey Mulligan, 23, a fresh and beautiful actress. She plays the 16-year-old precocious and vulnerable teenager Jenny, a cellist anticipating enrollment at Oxford University after graduation. Unexpectedly, she’s sideswept by twice-her-age Peter Sarsgaard, who spins her innocent world around, taking Carey on the town with his racy upscale friends, Dominic Cooper and Rosamund Pike. Classical concerts, cavorting in jazzy nightclubs, weekend romps in Paris. Seduced she is, in more ways than one. In bed? Of course. Would she now want to face her next years in the cloistered university atmosphere after tripping the light fantastic with roué Peter?

Directed by Sweden’s Lone Scherfig (Italian for Beginners), the cast is flawless, with Alfred Molina as Jenny’s blustery dad; Cara Seymour as her mother; Emma Thompson as headmistress of her school and Olivia Williams as her proud instructor. Carey’s is an award-worthy performance, as are Alfred Molina’s pompous ass, and Peter’s manipulating sophisticate. Would the Oscar-heavens be so kind as to nominate An Education for Best Picture, Lone Scherfig for Best Director, the cinematography of John de Borman’s irresistible visuals, Nick Hornby for Best Adapted Screenplay, who was inspired by Brit journalist Lynn Barber’s memoir.

FULL STORY: Click here to read George Christy's full column at the Beverly Hills Courier.

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