Sunday, March 2, 2014

My (Last Minute) 2014 Oscar Predictions

The Academy Awards ceremony is tonight on ABC.  Check your local listings. 

I first tried to pick the Oscar winners three years ago.  I got a respectable 16 out of 24 correct.  The last two years I’ve tried to really do my homework and see as many nominees as possible.  The result?  I dropped to 14 out of 24 then 12 out of 24.

This year I simply haven’t had the time to do the same amount of homework.  I’m making these picks with about a much overall knowledge of them as I did the first year.  I’m curious to see if my number goes up again.  Good or bad I will do a follow-up post on how I did.

Here is the complete list of nominations in all twenty-four categories.  What I would pick is highlighted in yellow.  No highlight means I have not seen any of the choices.  What I think will win is in bold.  I will also say if I think my choice is a lock, likely, educated guess, or wild-ass guess.

Best Picture

12 Years a Slave
American Hustle
Captain Phillips
Dallas Buyers Club
Gravity
Her
Nebraska
Philomena
The Wolf of Wall Street

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – The subject matter of 12 Years a Slave is more appealing to vote for than The Wolf of Wall Street or Gravity.

Best Animated Picture

The Croods
Despicable Me 2
Ernest & Celestine
Frozen
The Wind Rises

Confidence – Likely
Comment – It’s possible The Wind Rises will sneak in, but Frozen seems like the frontrunner.

Best Foreign Language Picture

The Broken Circle Breakdown
Belgium
The Great Beauty
Italy
The Hunt
Denmark
The Missing Picture
Cambodia
Omar
Palestine


Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – The Great Beauty seems to be winning this at most other awards shows.

Best Documentary

20 Feet from Stardom
The Act of Killing
Cutie and the Boxer
Dirty Wars
The Square

Confidence – Wild Ass Guess
Comment – The topic may attract voters.

Best Actor

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

Confidence – Likely
Comment – DiCaprio did a great job, but the subject matter will turn off some voters.

Best Actress

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

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – I haven’t seen Blanchett’s performance, but she seems to be the frontrunner.

Best 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

Confidence – Likely
Comment – Leto seems to be winning this at most awards shows.

Best 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

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – Nyong’o is in the more important film, but Lawrence is better known and therefore better liked.

Best Director

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

Confidence – Likely
Comment – Gravity was a tremendous achievement and Cuaron deserves recognition for that. 

Best Original Screenplay

American Hustle
Blue Jasmine
Dallas Buyers Club
Her
Nebraska

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – The voters do tend to actually pick the one they think is the best in this category, rather than just include this as a throw in with the bigger awards.  Woody Allen is a favorite with voters, though, so Blue Jasmine is a possibility.

Best Adapted Screenplay

12 Years a Slave
Before Midnight
Captain Phillips
Philomena
The Wolf of Wall Street

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – The voters get another chance to reward 12 Years a Slave.

Best Original Song

Happy
Despicable Me 2
Let It Go
Frozen
The Moon Song
Her
Ordinary Love
Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom

Confidence – Lock
Comment – I will fall off my couch in shock if this doesn’t win.

Best Original Score

The Book Thief
Gravity
Her
Philomena
Saving Mr. Banks

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – The start of a bunch of wins for Gravity in the more technical categories to make up for it not winning Best Picture. 

Best Cinematography

The Grandmaster
Gravity
Inside Llewyn Davis
Nebraska
Prisoners

Confidence – Likely
Comment – The visuals in this film are stunning and even though they are cgi, Avatar won this award and it was 60% an entirely animated film. 

Best Editing

12 Years a Slave
American Hustle
Captain Phillips
Dallas Buyers Club
Gravity

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – Gravity once again for the frenetic pace of many of the scenes. 

Best Production Design

12 Years a Slave
American Hustle
Gravity
The Great Gatsby
Her

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – I haven’t seen The Great Gatsby, but knowing Luhrman it was probably flashy as hell and voters like flash.  I may regret not picking it. 

Best Costumes

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

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – Recreating the hair and clothes of the late Seventies will probably win American Hustle this award. 

Best Makeup

Dallas Buyers Club
Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa
The Lone Ranger

Confidence – Likely
Comment – I simply can’t see people voting for either of the other two films simply because of how poorly they compare to Dallas Buyers Club. 

Best Visual Effects

Gravity
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Iron Man 3
The Lone Ranger
Star Trek into Darkness

Confidence – Likely
Comment – Smaug may have been more impressive in creating the fantastic, but Gravity is the anointed one this year. 

Best Sound Editing

All Is Lost
Captain Phillips
Gravity
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Lone Survivor

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – Gravity continues to win most of the categories it is nominated in. 

Best Sound Mixing

Captain Phillips
Gravity
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Inside Llewyn Davis
Lone Survivor

Confidence – Educated Guess
Comment – Gravity continues to win most of the categories it is nominated in. 

Best Animated Short

Feral
Get a Horse!
Mr. Hublot
Possessions
Room on the Broom

Confidence – Wild-Ass Guess
Comment – It’s got an exclamation point in the title. Other than that, I know nothing about any of these.

Best Documentary Short

Cave Digger
Facing Fear
Karama Has No Walls
The Lady in Number 6
Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall

Confidence – Wild-Ass Guess
Comment – I know nothing about any of these. 

Best Live Action Short

Aquel No Era Yo
Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?
Helium
Just Before Losing Everything
The Voorman Problem

Confidence – Wild-Ass Guess
Comment – I know nothing about any of these. 

Summary of Picks by Confidence Level

Lock:
  1. Best Original Song
Likely
  1. Best Animated Picture
  2. Best Actor
  3. Best Supporting Actor
  4. Best Director
  5. Best Cinematography
  6. Best Makeup
  7. Best Visual Effects
Educated Guess
  1. Best Picture
  2. Best Foreign Language Picture
  3. Best Actress
  4. Best Supporting Actress
  5. Best Original Screenplay
  6. Best Adapted Screenplay
  7. Best Original Score
  8. Best Editing
  9. Best Production Design
  10. Best Costumes
  11. Best Sound Editing
  12. Best Sound Mixing
Wild-Ass Guess
  1. Best Documentary
  2. Best Animated Short
  3. Best Documentary Short
  4. Best Live Action Short

6 comments:

  1. The Act of Killing is my pick to win also. Though I could see Academy going for 20 Feet from Stardom, which is less controversial, further towards mainstream, and easier to form agreement on.
    I too prefer The Hunt.The Great Beauty is the more conservative choice, and the 60 something main character fits with the large demographic of older Academy members. As you said, also won BAFTA and Golden Globe, so I can't see it getting beaten.

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    1. I haven't seen The Great Beauty yet, so I can't say for sure if I feel it is better or worse than The Hunt. It might be like several years back when this film I'd never heard of beat Pan's Labyrinth. When I saw it I realized that it turns out that as good as Pan's Labyrinth was The Lives of Others was better.

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  2. "It’s got an exclamation point in the title. Other than that, I know nothing about any of these."

    If you weren't already one of my favorite stops on the internet, this comment alone would elevate you to that status.

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    1. Wow, high praise indeed. Thanks. And I'm glad you liked that random bit of weirdness.

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  3. We're almost 1-for-1 on these. The only major category I don't think has already been decided is Supporting Actress, and I'm still pulling for Nyong'o over Lawrence, for two reasons: as much as I like Lawrence, I don't think she's done enough yet to warrant the honor of back-to-back Oscars, and also in case 12 Years a Slave does win Best Picture, I don't want it to have the distinction of being the first film since Mutiny on the Bounty in 1935 to walk away with a Best Picture win and no other categories.

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    Replies
    1. I think either Best Supporting Actress or Best Adapted Screenplay are the best chances for 12 Years a Slave to also win. Best Production is a lesser, but still possible chance.

      I wasn't really that sure about a lot of these picks, hence the large number of 'Educated Guess"es and only one "Lock".

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