Costume design is an essential element of character and story-telling in every movie, so every year I regret that the Oscar voters seem to think that costume design means pretty dresses and period clothing. Once again, all the nominated films are historical, with all but one taking place at least a century ago. The awful film "Anonymous" did have some great Shakespearian-era costumes and Madonna's little-seen "W.E." was about real-life fashion icons the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. The silent film-era glamour of "The Artist," beautifully brought to life by the very talented Mark Bridges ("There Will Be Blood," "I Heart Huckabees," "Punch Drunk Love") despite the challenges of working in black and white, is the front runner.
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