Tuesday, January 6, 2015

My Early Oscar Predictions 2015

It's movie awards season and for us movie lovers, it's our "March Madness," our Draft Day.

So my fingers are getting itchy and, I thought I would make my Oscar predictions even before the Academy Award nominations are announced.

I know I am sticking my neck out but, I actually have a good track record. 

I predicted that "Argo" and "The Hurt Locker" would win for Best Picture even before they were nominated and I was right.  And that was from a list of ten nominations, the relatively new rule - up to 10 movies can be nominated for Best Picture (it used to be only five).  I don't agree with that, but nobody asked me.

Now you might think I have a leg up on this, because the Golden Globe nominations have already been announced.  However, though there is some synchronicity between the two, the Golden Globes divides films and actors into Dramas and Comedies (the Academy does not), so there will be several acting nominees at the Golden Globes who will not get Academy Award nominations.

What are the Golden Globes? In 1943 a group of writers banded together to form the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and created the Golden Globe Award to promote themselves.  In the past, that award was an excuse to get celebrities together and have a party and did not have the gravitas of the Academy Awards.  It's still a big party (which can lead to some very funny, drunken acceptance speeches), but now it has gained prestige and acts as a sort of harbinger to what we might expect from the Academy Awards.  

But they don't know everything!

So without further ado, here are what I think the nominations will be for Best Actor and Actress, Best Picture and who I want to win and who I think will win. 

You might wonder why I am not commenting on Best Supporting Actor and Actress.  As Bill Murray used to say when he made his Oscar predictions on Saturday Night Live's "Weekend Update," "Who Cares?" 

Note:  I am really sticking my neck out here as I haven't even seen all of the films yet!  But for those I have, I have linked the films below to my original reviews.

Best Actor

Michael Keaton, "Birdman"
Benedict Cumberbatch, "The Imitation Game"
Eddie Redmayne, "The Theory of Everything"
Bill Murray, "St. Vincent"
Jake Gyllenhaal, "Nightcrawler"

I predict Eddie Redmayne will win Best Actor because the Academy loves seeing actors play roles where they must overcome a disability - Remember Daniel Day-Lewis in "My Left Foot?"  It's like that.  Day-Lewis won an Academy Award for his role as Christy Brown who was born with cerebral palsy and learned to write and paint with his only usable limb - his left foot.  Well, Eddie plays Stephen Hawking who lives with ALS, but what makes his performance so striking is his going from the young vibrant Hawking through all of the stages of his disease to his complete debilitation, all the while showing Hawking's determination to live and his sense of humor. 

An extraordinary performance.

I think he will win and I want him to win.

Best Actress

Reese Witherspoon, "Wild"
Julianne Moore, "Still Alice"
Felicity Jones, "The Theory of Everything"
Rosamund Pike, "Gone Girl"
Jennifer Anniston, "Cake"

I predict that Julianne Moore will win for "Still Alice," because the Academy loves stories about people fighting a disease.  Julianne Moore fighting Alzheimer's Disease?  What a combo.  And she hasn't won an Oscar yet.

But I would really like to see Reese Witherspoon win for "Wild."  She is a one-woman show bringing Cheryl Strayed's powerful book to life.  And she plays against type.  "America's Sweetheart" does nude scenes!

Best Picture


The Theory of Everything

The Imitation Game





Gone Girl


I am really going to stick my neck out here, but I think "Boyhood" will not only be nominated, it will win Best Picture. 

The filming took place over 12 years using the same cast.  We literally watch a boy grow up.  Filmmaking doesn't get any more powerful than that.  Director Richard Linklater should win Best Director for that feat alone.

But I would love to see "Into the Woods" win, because it is a brilliant film and musicals don't get enough props!

Well, we shall see.

What do you think?

Academy Award nominations will be announced January 15 and the ceremony takes place February 22.  

See you there! 

And if you want to throw a killer Academy Award Party, see last year's blog post.

Thanks for reading.

See you Friday 
for my review of the new movie
"The Imitation Game,"
The Week in Reviews,
as well as my progress on
"My 1001 Movies I Must See Before I Die Project."

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