Thursday, January 16, 2014

Oscar Nominations: Stupid, Stupid, Stupid Dallas Buyers Club

Luckily, nobody comes here for the accuracy of my predictions (hopefully), because this year I dropped the ball quite a bit. That's a whole lot more fun, though--if I predicted everything correctly, that would mean that there was never a contest, which is no fun. So let's get to it! Some good picks, more boring ones, you know, the usual.

Note: I'll put an asterisk next to the movies I predicted correctly so y'all can see how I did.

Best Picture
American Hustle*
Captain Phillips*
Dallas Buyers Club*
12 Years a Slave*
The Wolf of Wall Street*

8 out of 9 isn't bad. I hate that the Academy just loved Dallas Buyers Club, as it's probably in my bottom 10 for the year, but it's nice to see Gravity here (not like there was any chance that it wouldn't be). Overall, an unsurprising and unembarrassing lift, if somewhat boring and/or conventional.
Early Winner Prediction: American Hustle

Alfonso Cuaron-Gravity*
Steve McQueen-12 Years a Slave*
Alexander Payne-Nebraska*
David O. Russell-American Hustle*
Martin Scorsese-The Wolf of Wall Street

The big shocker here is Captain Phillips missing, which is a film the Academy clearly didn't love as much as we thought they would (as you'll see later). I don't know how excited I should be that Scorsese made it, considering I still haven't seen The Wolf of Wall Street. This list is like the best picture nominees--just fine, but a little boring.
Early Winner Prediction: Alfonso Cuaron-Gravity

Christian Bale-American Hustle
Bruce Dern-Nebraska*
Leonardo Dicaprio-The Wolf of Wall Street*
Chiwetel Ejiofor-12 Years a Slave*
Matthew McConaughey-Dallas Buyers Club*

I hate, hate, hate that Christian Bale got in for a thoroughly uninteresting performance in American Hustle, especially at the expense of Tom Hanks in Captain Phillips. Hustle showed huge support across the board today, which kinda makes me think it's going to win best picture.
Eearly Winner Prediction: Chiwetel Ejiofor-12 Years a Slave

Amy Adams-American Hustle*
Cate Blanchett-Blue Jasmine*
Sandra Bullock-Gravity*
Judi Dench-Philomena
Meryl Streep-August: Osage County*

Strange and a little disappointing to see Emma Thompson miss out here for Saving Mr. Banks, but I like all of these performances, so I guess I can't complain. Not that it *really* matters who's nominated here, considering Cate Blanchett already has this in the bag.
Early Winner Prediction: Cate Blanchett-Blue Jasmine

Supporting Actor
Barkhad Abdi-Captain Phillips*
Bradley Cooper-American Hustle*
Michael Fassbender-12 Years a Slave*
Jonah Hill-The Wolf of Wall Street
Jared Leto-Dallas Buyers Club*

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Jonah Hill and Bradley Cooper; that's twice they've been nominated for an Oscar, and I think a third nomination will be a sign of the Apocalypse. My risky Will Forte prediction yesterday didn't pay off, but oh well. I guess I was just subconsciously hoping for Mr. Hill to miss. Which I probably shouldn't do, since I still haven't seen that movie.
Early Winner Prediction: Jared Leto-Dallas Buyers Club

Supporting Actress
Sally Hawkins-Blue Jasmine
Jennifer Lawrence-American Hustle*
Lupita Nyong'o-12 Years a Slave*
Julia Roberts-August: Osage County*
June Squibb-Nebraska*

Hell yeah Sally Hawkins! I wouldn't care if she were nominated for reading the newspaper, as long as they're trying to make up for snubbing her for Happy-Go-Lucky 5 years ago. The fact that Oprah missed here is really surprising; even now, I'm sure Oprah is sealing some of her followers in a sarcophagus made of book-club books in an attempt to sate her wrath. Sadly, I think the fact that Hustle's got huge momentum right now means that the lovely and deserving Lupita Nyong'o will go home empty-handed.
Early Winner Prediction: Jennifer Lawrence-American Hustle

Original Screenplay
American Hustle*
Blue Jasmine*
Dallas Buyers Club

I knew I should have predicted Dallas Buyers Club, because I can't stand that movie, so I predicted Inside Llewyn Davis instead, which is a movie I love, and it didn't make it here, which makes me want to sharpen my daggers and go on a rampage. Them's the breaks, I guess.
Early Winner Prediction: American Hustle

Adapted Screenplay
Before Midnight*
Captain Phillips*
12 Years a Slave*
The Wolf of Wall Street*

Given that Philomena was the surprise best picture nominee (go Harvey Weinstein, I guess), of course it was going to make it here. I'm just thrilled to see Before Midnight show up. In a just world, it would win this award in a heartbeat.
Early Winner Prediction: 12 Years a Slave

Production Design
American Hustle*
The Great Gatsby*
12 Years a Slave*

The Hobbit missing out here makes it the first Lord of the Rings film to do so, breaking a 12 year, 5 film streak. It's great to see Her, though--I didn't love the movie like I wanted to, but it was immaculately designed. I just assumed it was a little too subtle for the Academy's tastes.
Early Winner Prediction: The Great Gatsby

Costume Design
American Hustle*
The Grandmaster
The Great Gatsby*
The Invisible Woman
12 Years a Slave*

Awfully bummed to see The Hunger Games' wacky collars to miss here, and annoyed that I now have to try to see The Invisible Woman. I'd love to catch up with The Grandmaster, but I missed it in theaters and for some reason Netflix doesn't have any kind of release date listed. C'mon guys, just let me see the pretty kung fu movie already.
Early Winner Prediction: The Great Gatsby

Visual Effects
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug*
Iron Man Three*
The Lone Ranger
Star Trek Into Darkness*

No Pacific Rim? Curses! This also means that I have to see The Lone Ranger now. The Academy is a cruel mistress.

Makeup and Hairstyling
Dallas Buyers Club
Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa
The Lone Ranger*

Look, it's another bad movie that I've got to watch (hi Bad Grandpa!). And Dallas Buyers Club. Lovely. Man, this category is kind of hideous, isn't it? Fun fact: Hunger Games didn't make it here either (or anywhere), which makes it only the third highest-grossing film of the year since 1980 to not get an oscar nomination.
Early Winner Prediction: Dallas Buyers Club

Film Editing
American Hustle*
Captain Phillips*
Dallas Buyers Club
12 Years a Slave*

Continuing the Dallas Buyers Club theme, then. Gross.
Early Winner Prediction: Gravity

The Grandmaster
Inside Llewyn Davis*

Finally, Inside Llewyn Davis gets something. Shocked to not see 12 Years a Slave here. The fact that it missed a couple important under-the-line nods, while American Hustle is racking it up wherever it can, is further proof that the ball is no longer in 12 Years a Slave's court.
Early Winner Prediction: Gravity

Original Score
The Book Thief*
Saving Mr. Banks*

Yet again, 12 Years a Slave misses. I'm fine with that here, considering that that movie's score is actively terrible. Lovely to see Her get in here, sad to see All is Lost miss, delightful to see that they basically nominate John Williams for being able to breath in tune (The Book Thief) and interesting to note that this is Saving Mr. Banks' sad, solitary little nomination.
Early Winner Prediction: Gravity

Sound Mixing
Captain Phillips*
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Inside Llewyn Davis
Lone Survivor*

Fun to see The Hobbit get in here; whatever that movie's faults, the sound was always fun. Ditto Lone Survivor, which I'm just glad to see show up somewhere this morning, and Inside Llewyn Davis, whose limited success we'll have to celebrate wherever we find it.
Early Winner Prediction: Gravity

Sound Editing
All is Lost
Captain Phillips*
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Lone Survivor*

Here's All is Lost's only mention of the morning, which is too bad, because it really is a fantastic film. Incidentally, it's surprising to see 12 Years a Slave miss out in both the sound categories. Not only is the work fantastic (albeit a bit subtle for Academy tastes), but best picture frontrunners tend to show up here surprisingly.
Early Winner Prediction: Gravity

Original Song
"Alone Yet Not Alone"-Alone Yet Not Alone
"Happy"-Despicable Me 2
"Let it Go"-Frozen*
"The Moon Song"-Her
"Ordinary Love"-Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom*

As always, I did atrociously at predicting this category. What the hell is Alone Yet Not Alone? I'm pretty much horrified that Lana Del Rey's lovely "Young and Beautiful" from The Great Gatsby missed, and torn as to whether or not I'm actually going to spend $7 on Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom just to listen to a Bono song. Odds are against it.
Early Winner Prediction: "Let it Go"-Frozen

Animated Film
The Croods*
Despicable Me 2
Ernest and Celestine*
The Wind Rises*

The fact that Monsters University lost here shows that Pixar's golden age/Academy grace period might just be over. Wonderful to see Miyazaki here, as well as indie fare represented with Ernest and Celestine. Guess I've got to go watch The Croods and Despicable Me 2 now. Yay?
Early Winner Prediction: Frozen

Foreign Language Film
The Broken Circle Breakdown-Belgium*
The Great Beauty-Italy*
The Hunt-Denmark*
The Missing Picture-Cambodia

Although I haven't seen most of these, from what I've heard these are actually fantastic choices. They managed to avoid all the obvious, sentimental Oscar bait, and made some really daring choices (The Missing Picture? It's a documentary about the Khmer Rouge made using puppets. Yeah). Wish I could see some of these, but apparently we don't deserve foreign films in the middle of the country.
Early Winner Prediction: The Hunt

Documentary Feature
The Act of Killing
Cutie and The Boxer
Dirty Wars
The Square*
20 Feet from Stardom*

Thrilled that The Act of Killing made it (it's one of the best movies of the year), but sad that Stories We Tell didn't (it's one of the best movies of the year too). That said, I don't really have any commentary. I haven't seen any of the other nominees, but 20 Feet from Stardom is on my bookshelf, and at least two of the others are on Netflix instant, so I'll get caught up.
Early Winner Prediction: The Square

Note: Of the main nominees (i.e. not animated, foreign, or documentary), I haven't yet seen The Wolf of Wall Street, The Grandmaster, The Invisible Woman, The Lone Ranger, Alone Yet Not AloneMandela: Long Walk to Freedom, or Despicable Me 2. I'm seeing The Wolf of Wall Street this weekend, The Lone Ranger and Despicable Me just went to the top of my Netflix queue, and I've just discovered I can rent The Grandmaster on Amazon. That beings said, I can't find Alone Yet Not Alone anywhere, The Invisible Woman might not open near me, and I just don't want to see Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. So we'll see--I'm not sure I'll be able to see all the nominated films by Oscar night.

This was a pretty mediocre predicting session for me: the only category I nailed 5/5 was Adapted Screenplay, but the only categories I Really messed up were Makeup, Original Song, and Documentary, which are basically the hardest categories to predict anyway.

For those counting at home, here's a list of the most nominated films, which, surprisingly, 12 Years a Slave isn't at the top of:

1. American Hustle-10
2. Gravity-10
3. 12 Years a Slave-9
4. Nebraska-6
5. Dallas Buyers Club-6
6. Captain Phillips-6
7. The Wolf of Wall Street-5
8. Her-5
9. Philomena-4
10. Blue Jasmine-3

And here's a list of some notable films that didn't get any nominations at all: The Bling Ring, Blue is the Warmest Color, The Butler, Don Jon, Elysium, Enough Said, Frances Ha, Fruitvale Station, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Labor Day, Leviathan, Man of Steel, Monsters University, Mud, Oblivion, Oz the Great and Powerful, Pacific Rim, Rush, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Short Term 12, Spring Breakers, Stories We Tell, Thor: The Dark World, Warm Bodies, The Wolverine, World War Z...

In summation: not too many bad nominations (except the stupid Dallas Buyers stupid Club), but not a ton of inspiring ones either. Any thoughts?

No comments:

Post a Comment