2014 Oscars Predictions and Bowling

Well, I made this list somewhat quickly this year. I’ve seen 2 of the 9 Best Picture nominations which is actually probably more than usual in recent years. I’ll get around to the others this year, of course.

1. Best Picture: “12 Years a Slave”
2. Best Leading Actor: Matthew McConaughey, for “Dallas Buyers Club”
3. Best Leading Actress: Cate Blanchett, for “Blue Jasmine”
4. Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto, for “Dallas Buyers Club”
5. Best Supporting Actress: Lupita N’yongo, for “12 Years a Slave”
6. Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron, for “Gravity”
7. Best Original Screenplay: “Her”
8. Best Adapted Screenplay: “12 Years a Slave”
9. Best Cinematography: “Gravity”
10. Best Editing: “Captain Phillips”
11. Best Production Direction: “The Great Gatsby”
12. Best Costume Design: “American Hustle”
13. Best Makeup and Hairstyling: “Dallas Buyers Club”
14. Best Original Score (Music): “Gravity”
15. Best Original Song: ‘Let it Go’ from “Frozen”
16. Best Sound Mixing: “Gravity”
17. Best Sound Editing: “Gravity”
18. Best Visual Effects: “Gravity”
19. Best Animated Film: “Frozen”
20. Best Foreign Language Film: “The Great Beauty”
21. Best Documentary: “The Act of Killing”
22. Best Short Documentary: “The Lady in Number 6”
23. Best Short Animated Film: “Get a Horse!”
24. Best Short (Live Action) Film: “Helium”

1. Last year I was a bit daring with my choice of “Lincoln”. While some people will vote for “Gravity”, I really don’t see that movie winning. This year, I’ve seen 2 of the 9 nominees-“Gravity” and “Captain Phillips”. I don’t see Phillips winning despite it being a very good movie. “12 Years a Slave” seems the contender here.

2-5. Just going with the majority this year. Blanchett seems the likeliest one of all of these choices to win.

6. “Gravity” was a technical masterpiece, so Cuaron will win the Oscar here. “Hustle” is the dark horse of this category with “Slave” having a small chance as well.

7. This is a slightly tougher one, but I like to think that the Academy sides towards more of the ‘indie’ films in this category. This is a category where films like “Lost in Translation”, “Midnight in Paris” and “Juno” have won. These are films that can’t quite get the Oscar but the Academy wants to recognize them somewhere, and it’s usually here.

9. Lubezki should have won with “The Tree of Life” before so he will finally win with “Gravity”. This one is almost a gimme.

10. This one is a bit tougher for me as I haven’t seen three of the five nominated films. Rouse has won before with “The Bourne Supremacy”, but “Gravity” seems to be a tighter film in some respects. I really wish I have seen the other films, but if we assume that the long shots by Lubezki in “Gravity” were all in one take, then we have to assume that “Phillips” has the better chance. So, I’ll go with that.

14. Newman tends to get nominated a lot but never seems to win. As I haven’t seen “Saving Mr. Banks” it’s tough to vote for it. I think it would have to be incredibly original for him to finally win, so I’m going to say that that one is out. The same goes for Williams who has had his day in the Oscar limelight (and may have deserved more wins than he’s received…cough, “Memoirs of a Geisha” …) “Gravity” seems to be the favored choice here, so I’ll stick with it.

15. Oh, boy…it’s this category, hehe…Well, I seem to get this every other year, so maybe I’ll miss it this year? While this year may not be the toughest year in recent years for this category (I think back to the year that Toy Story 3’s song won and I somehow got the right), I think there are a few strong contenders. The obvious choice might be “Frozen”, but the Academy may have gotten wind of the amazing 24-hour music video for the song ‘Happy’, from the movie “Despicable Me 2”. While they shouldn’t have voted for the fact that the song had a good video, it certainly gives it some steam. I don’t see the song from “Her” winning. It’s just too dry and unmemorable. And then we’ve got the dark horse of U2’s ‘Ordinary Love’ which is a good song in its own right. It feels more like a good pop song rather than a song from a movie, somehow. But I actually quite liked this song. And even ‘Happy’ has that same kind of pop feel that ‘Ordinary Love’ has.

I almost made a post about why ‘Let it Go’ doesn’t deserve to win the Oscar this year, but this is about what song will win. I never got around to making that post, and it may look weird post-Oscars to make a post titled “Why ‘Let it Go’ should not have won” versus a pre-Oscars post titled “Why ‘Let it Go’ shouldn’t win an Oscar (even though it will).” I just have to admit that, as it stands, it’s probably going to win. Just don’t be surprised at a dark horse arising in this category.

17. While “Phillips” has a chance at Sound Editing, this is a year that I am not being too risky, so I’ll go with “Gravity” again.

19. Many people were wrong in predicting “Wreck-it Ralph” last year. This year I am going to go again with the obvious choice of “Frozen”, but don’t be surprised if there’s a dark horse winner here (ala Miyazaki with “The Wind Rises” or the not so obvious “Ernest & Celestine”.

21-24. I have a method of choosing these four categories that I’ve likely revealed before. I simply choose the film that has the most Oscar-worthy synopsis. Why do I choose this way? If the film was so good to be nominated, then I don’t need to have seen the film to know that it was good. So it’s just going to be which film would have likely resonated more with Oscar voters. This should be especially true of the two Documentary categories.

21. With that little exposition out of the way, here’s how I chose this one-“The Square” seems to have no chance. War movies tend to get nominated but don’t seem to have good chances at winning, so I’ll skip on “Dirty Wars”. “Cutie and the Boxer” seems cute, but probably won’t win. I watched the trailer and it reminds me of “Jiro Dreams of Sushi” a little bit.

Then we get to the two real contenders. “The Act of Killing” has an interesting theme to it. They say the main ‘protagonist’ used to be a mass executioner, having killed over one million people. I don’t see how he’s still alive or not in jail (perhaps the movie explains that?) but it makes for an interesting topic, as he is asked to film murder scenes that may have been similar to ones he carried out in real life. Then we have the supposed crowd-favorite of “20 Feet from Stardom”. This movie is sure to hit more at home with voters, as it tells the story of unfairness in the music industry for backup singers. Still, “The Act of Killing” seems a bit more important despite it feeling like a more ‘distant’ film, so I’ll try that film this year.

And let’s go bowling:

24. Best Visual Effects: “Gravity”
23. Best Cinematography: “Gravity”
22. Best Leading Actress: Cate Blanchett, for “Blue Jasmine”
21. Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron, for “Gravity”
20. Best Animated Film: “Frozen”
19. Best Makeup and Hairstyling: “Dallas Buyers Club”
18. Best Sound Mixing: “Gravity”
17. Best Picture: “12 Years a Slave”
16. Best Production Direction: “The Great Gatsby”
15. Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto, for “Dallas Buyers Club”
14. Best Foreign Language Film: “The Great Beauty”
13. Best Leading Actor: Matthew McConaughey, for “Dallas Buyers Club”
12. Best Original Screenplay: “Her”
11. Best Sound Editing: “Gravity”
10. Best Supporting Actress: Lupita N’yongo, for “12 Years a Slave”
9. Best Editing: “Captain Phillips”
8. Best Adapted Screenplay: “12 Years a Slave”
7. Best Costume Design: “American Hustle”
6. Best Original Score (Music): “Gravity”
5. Best Original Song: ‘Let it Go’ from “Frozen”
4. Best Short Documentary: “The Lady in Number 6”
3. Best Documentary: “The Act of Killing”
2. Best Short (Live Action) Film: “Helium”
1. Best Short Animated Film: “Get a Horse!”