2015 Oscar Predictions

2015 Oscar Predictions

Here we are, boys and girls, the end of the line, the grand finale. This is what the seemingly endless array of red carpets has been leading to: The Academy Awards. And of course, it wouldn’t be an awards show if you didn’t have A Couple of Critics spouting their opinions.

Now, if you’re a hardcore Oscar ballot competitor, this is not the predictions post for you. You will not find any advice on which documentary short is the best because we, like you, have not seen any of them. We have however seen all the nominated features and most of the nominated performances, so strap yourselves in kids, we got some predicting to do.

Note: As always, when I say “Will Win” I am basing it on the current odds and buzz and when I say “Should Win” I am basing it on my own personal and deeply biased opinion.

Best Original Song

“Everything is Awesome,” The Lego Movie
“Glory,” Selma
“Grateful,” Beyond the Lights
“I’m Not Going to Miss You,” Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me
“Lost Stars,” Begin Again

What Should Win: “Lost Stars”
What Will Win: “Glory”

My criteria here is an easy one. “Lost Stars” is the only song on this list that I, A. own and B. would want to own. But, this is only one of two awards Selma is up for and the Academy needs to prove they aren’t racist.

Kyle: I would love to see it go to “Everything is Awesome”, because it’s quite fun saying “Oscar nominee, Andy Samberg” and “Oscar winner, Andy Samberg” sounds even more appealing.  But however bold my co-author is in her wording, it is true nonetheless that the statue will go to Selma for “Glory“.

Best Film Editing

American Sniper
Boyhood
Grand Budapest
The Imitation Game
Whiplash

What Should Win: Whiplash
What Will Win: Boyhood 

This one comes down to what is more impressive, splicing together drum solos or editing 12 years worth of footage into one cohesive story. Both are pretty damn impressive so, for me, it’s a tossup.

Couldn’t agree more, though I am leaning towards Whiplish to take it home, because only fast-paced precision in the editing room can make watching a jazz band on film engrossing.

Best Cinematography

Birdman
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Ida
Mr. Turner
Unbroken

What Should Win: The Grand Budapest Hotel
What Will Win: Birdman

Birdman was pretty and all, but The Grand Budapest Hotel was a masterpiece in cinematic design. It needs to win every single award dedicated to the beauty of a film. End of discussion.

Quite right again!  Sometimes I hate that Devin gets to place her opinion down here first (though if I was in charge, it may not get done until the eve of the Oscars, if even at all).  Birdman will win for its gimmick, not for besting out the rest of the list.  

Best Adapted Screenplay

American Sniper
The Imitation Game
Inherent Vice
The Theory of Everything
Whiplash

What Should Win: Whiplash
What Will Win: The Imitation Game

Lets break this down, film by film, purely looking at the script. Inherent Vice made no sense. American Sniper is a joke. And both The Imitation Game and The Theory of Everything’s biggest flaws were their plotting. Whiplash, on the other hand was smart, well paced and expertly written.

This is perhaps the toughest call of any the categories for me.  However, I will put my monopoly money on The Theory of Everything.

Best Original Screenplay

Birdman
Boyhood
Foxcatcher
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Nightcrawler

What Should Win: The Grand Budapest Hotel or Nightcrawler
What Will Win: The Grand Budapest Hotel

The writing categories are where smaller movies usually leave their mark. True, it seems insane to call the movie with the most star studded cast “small, “ but its Wes Anderson and even though he’s a bonafide bigwig at this point, he’ll never lose his indie feel. It would be great to see Nightcrawler take something, but I won’t be too sad to see Grand Budapest walk away with it. Really, as long as Birdman doesn’t win (anything), I’m happy.

Harsh darling, but understandable.  I think the Academy will get it right with this one though and present the award to Wes Anderson (who will be snubbed later) for The Grand Budapest Hotel

Best Supporting Actor

Robert Duvall, The Judge
Ethan Hawke, Boyhood
Edward Norton, Birdman
Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher
J.K. Simmons, Whiplash

Who Should Win: J.K. Simmons
Who Will Win: J.K. Simmons

Whiplash was, in my opinion, one of the best movies of the year and I am so thrilled that the Academy gave such a small movie so much recognition. Of course, the buzz begins and ends with J.K. Simmons. Everyone in this category was good, but Simmons was on fire. And, since he’s been picking up every award on the path to Oscar, it’s highly unlikely anyone disagrees with me.

Yes.

Best Supporting Actress

Patricia Arquette, Boyhood
Laura Dern, Wild
Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game
Emma Stone, Birdman
Meryl Streep, Into the Woods

Who Should Win: Patricia Arquette
Who Will Win: Patricia Arquette

Another category, another runaway. Again, all these lovely ladies gave exceptional performances, but Patricia locked this one up with her final scene in the movie alone.

Patricia Arquette will give another awkward speech on Oscar night.  Although she was exceptional, the other nominees seem to just be filling a ballot.  A poor year for supporting actresses I guess. 

Best Actor

Steve Carell, Foxcatcher
Bradley Cooper, American Sniper
Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game
Michael Keaton, Birdman
Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Who Should Win:  Jake Gyllanhall, Nightcrawler
Who Will Win: Eddie Redmayne

Michael Keaton had early momentum, but as Awards Season has gone on, Eddie has slowly taken the lead. Its still fairly close, but its important to remember that the Oscars are ultimately a popularity contest and if the whiff of douche-baggery coming off of Keaton can be felt through the screen, imagine how strong it must be when you’re actually in the same room as him. Personally, I wouldn’t give it to either of them. Keaton was good, but Birdman was too over rated to give it anything and while Redmayne certainly gave a suburb performance, the role itself did most of the heavy lifting there.  For my money, Jake Gyllenhaal gave the year’s best performance in Nightcrawler, but he wasn’t even nominated, so boo to you, Oscars.

Damn it.  I really thought she’d go for Keaton on this one.  I agree that Gyllenhaal should have received a nomination and agree even more so that Eddie Redmayne will bring home that statue.  However, I believe it to be deservingly so.  

Best Actress

Marion Cotillard, Two Days, One Night
Felicity Jones, The Theory of Everything
Julianne Moore, Still Alice
Rosamund Pike, Gone Girl
Reese Witherspoon, Wild

Who Should Win: Julianne Moore
Who Will Win: Julianne Moore

It’s hard to have an opinion on this category because, as of writing of this, I’ve only seen two of the nominated performances, but that’s never stopped me from having an opinion before. And its not like it really matters since its foregone conclusion that Julianne Moore will win. Since the trailers left me weeping, I can’t say I disagree with it.

I think Witherspoon could possibly pull through and give an honest-to-God shocked acceptance speech that she definitely didn’t think to write, but instead she’ll probably just put on a smile for the cameras as Julianne Moore struts to the stage.  

Best Director

Alejandro Innaritu, Birdman
Richard Linklater, Boyhood
Bennett Miller, Foxcatcher
Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel
Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game

Who Should Win: Richard Linklater
Who Will Win: Richard Linklater

All of these movies (besides Birdman) are good, so obviously none of these directors (besides Alejandro Innaritu) exactly failed. However, only one of these directors took an epic risk on a form of movie making that has never been attempted before and excelled in it. That will not go unrecognized.

Now you’re just being mean.  I wish we could have a tie this year.  Four of these films really stand out for their direction (sorry The Imitation Game).  Richard Linklater took an epic risk as Devin said, and its true.  He deserves this statue for creating a film that will go down in the history of cinema.  But I do wish for that tie, because if we look at exactly what a director does and the vision it takes to truly be one of the greats, Wes Anderson is a real winner with The Grand Budapest Hotel

Best Picture

American Sniper
Birdman
Boyhood
The Grand Budapest Hotel
The Imitation Game
Selma
The Theory of Everything
Whiplash

What Should Win: Boyhood
What Will Win: Boyhood

Its funny, but in putting this predictions post together, I was struck with how unexciting this years nominations felt, largely because most of the races aren’t that close. Awards Season has made it clear that Boyhood’s win is inevitable and that’s all well and good, but it leaves this awards race lacking a certain excitement. Then, I thought back to last summer when I first saw Boyhood and how I cursed its bad fortune for coming out so early because, in my mind, there was no way a small, sweet movie like that would break its way into the awards race if it didn’t even come out with the rest of the pack. And now here we are. Maybe it isn’t as exciting, but that doesn’t mean it’s not right or good or satisfying.

The nicest thing you’ve written thus far.  As I stated before, Boyhood will be the film that marks out a spot for itself in the history of the art form.  As much as I loved this year at the movies, that statement will not be as true for the rest.  
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Filed under: Awards

Tags: Oscars, Predictions

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