Name: Caleb Edwards
@edward: You come off really harsh in your criticism of TNC -- which makes it a bit funnier that you wrote "except criticism" instead of "accept criticism" :D
Anyways, I'm with TNC. I think it was pretty awesome.
Just my two cents, but I was fine with the lack of nominations for TDK. I don't think that Benjamin Button deserved 13 (or even a Best Picture nomination over something like Gran Torino), but I just didn't find it compelling. In fact, for my money I felt almost as frustrated walking out at the end of TDK as i did at Indiana Jones -- the more you think about it the more the plot falls apart (or you just have to believe that the citizens of Gotham are complete idiots!). Iron Man was my favourite movie of the year, but I can understand it not getting a nomination.
As for the Tropic Thunder nomination, I actually remember thinking that Downey's performance was a lot like Ledger's -- lots of makeup, very different from what you would expect of them, and very immersive, but I don't know that there was anything subtle about either of them, or that either showed any character development -- which are things I would associate with being a "best" actor.
Without wanting to get too off track, I think one show that subverts this is The Office (at least, the American version, which I've watched more of recently and remember better). Most of the women on that show aren't especially attractive (although it did become a plot point with Jan). At the same time, The Office does it in another way - it skips the "boring" moments.
Thankfully we don't get hour long shows of people standing around waiting for software to install, or waiting in traffic on their way to work. Although part of the humour of the show is about the boredom of being in an office, they do a good job of just showing the fun parts. Which is the same with almost any tv show (or comic book) I can think of.
Anyways, that whole digression was just to make the point that this is a symptom of a larger trend (problem?). Almost all our media presents our lives back to us with the less pleasant parts extracted - whether it's boring moments (or days or weeks), OR whether it's physical imperfections (or as some people have pointed out, physical limitations). I don't know that I'd like to watch a purposefully boring show, but I think that - on some level - even comic books (or TV shows or movies) that portrayed "realistic" men and women would still be deluding us.
I can sympathize 100% - I've always liked Iron Man (strangely enough, since I picked up Heroes Reborn while in early high school), and was intensely worried that the movie would suck - and really relieved when it didn't. (Although the scene after the credits made me worried that it might go in the same direction as the first series of Batman movies).
Indiana Jones was a huge part of my childhood, but I don't know that I'm that worried about it - I figure, George Lucas already destroyed a cherished part of my childhood with the Prequels and I survived, he can't do that much worse with Indiana Jones.