Totally understand and agree with you on the awards thing. If some poor big-budget blockbuster is just going to win at least best sound or best special effects, why not give some other films a chance? I didn't like Juno that much because it isn't the type that stays with me. I had No Country and TWBB on my mind for days afterwards. Juno was on my mind until about twenty minutes later when we walked into Charlie Wilson's War, which I enjoyed more because of the depth of commentary and overall better acting and direction. I don't want to knock Juno though; those type of chick/sentimental flicks are way better than some Matthew Mohawk-whatever or Jennifer Lopez crap.
I feel like American Gangster has the exact same problems as 3:10 to Yuma. Kind of a double lead and not on the spiritual and psychological level as the two I've mentioned continually. The difference I see is that Scott wasn't as precise as Mangold in his overall direction and AG suffered from being kind of long but also kind of incomplete/too quickly wrapped up. Anyways, good show.