Let’s start this Oscar® run-down & predictions with a little historical perspective, assuming you’ve been a fan of films of several eras; Clark Gable lost out as best actor in ‘Gone with the Wind’ to Robert Donat in “Goodbye Mr. Chips’ in 1939. Cary Grant and Myrna Loy only received an Honorary Oscar®. First, you might say, so what, that was long before our time.
Let’s fast forward to the films of 2014, and the nominations. Who could imagine that Selma has only received two nominations? The Academy Awards are elusive and highly unpredictable.
I think it’s a safe bet that my opinions won’t coincide with those of the Academy. Having said that, here are my predictions along with a few comments. Long tedious drum roll please . .
My Oscar® Predictions for February 22, 2015
- ORIGINAL SONG – “Glory” Selma
- ORIGINAL SCORE – The Grand Budapest Hotel
- SOUND EDITING – The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies
- SOUND MIXING – Whiplash
- VISUAL EFFECTS – Guardians of the Galaxy
- MAKEUP & HAIRSTYLING – The Grand Budapest Hotel (I really haven’t a clue)
- COSTUME DESIGN – Mr. Turner
- FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM – Ida (I really haven’t a clue)
- LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM – The Phone Call
- DOCUMENTARY SHORT – Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1
- DOCUMENTARY FEATURE – Citizenfour (A huge surprise if this doesn’t win)
- ANIMATED SHORT FILM – A Single Life
- ANIMATED FEATURE – Big Hero 6
- PRODUCTION DESIGN – Into the Woods (This is the point where I start to care)
- CINEMATOGRAPHY – The Grand Budapest Hotel
- FILM EDITING – Boyhood
- ADAPTED SCREENPLAY – The Theory of Everything
- ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY – Foxcatcher (Academy will probably choose Birdman)
- DIRECTOR – Morten Tyldum, “The Imitation Game”
- SUPPORTING ACTRESS – Keira Knightly, “The Imitation Game”
- SUPPORTING ACTOR – J. K. Simmons, “Whiplash”
- ACTRESS – Julianne Moore, “Still Alice”
- ACTOR – Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Imitation Game”
- PICTURE – The Imitation Game
I thought American Sniper has all the ear marks for an excellent directed and acted film, but I don’t see the Academy bestowing any significant honors on this film. The politics don’t favor it. Besides, there’s not a nomination for Clint Eastwood as Director. American Sniper is doing well at the box office and it was shot on a relatively modest budget. What surprises me the most, as far as subject matter and good direction is Selma. No matter what honors it receives this evening, this is a significant and worthwhile movie to see.
I can’t get buzzed about Birdman. I know Michael Keaton is popular and this is viewed in some ways as a comeback for him, but it’s not that strong of a vehicle. Eddie Redmayne does an outstanding job as Stephen Hawking, so this could be a real challenge vs. Benedict Cumberbatch for best actor. See this article on Battle of the Brits in Hollywood~land.