Alright, it’s time for Hollywoods annual pat-on-the-back-athon. Ah yes, that yearly celebration where filmmakers of all kind hand each other golden statues in recognition of how globally important their recent work was. We all know that playing pretend and getting paid millions of dollars for it really does change the tide of human history, but there also needs to be an excentrically glamourised award show to hammer home the point. I’m of course talking about…

The Oscars

I don’t love The Oscars, especially since I disagree with them on so much. Still, I’m always excited to see what the nominations will be and, eventually, who takes home a nude little golden erect man. It’s a night or stars and sparkles, who can hate it? (No, I’m not gay…I’m a cinephile.)

After tonight I will give you my list of 2012 cinema favourites with my own little award show, but for now we must let the Oscars have their moment. Poor Oscars, they only get about 37 million people watching them every year. Not like my blog, which gets upwards of 15 – 40 views a day!

it's something

So let’s have a look at what the nominations are tonight:

2013 Oscar Nominations

Let’s be honest, nobody cares about awards like “best short film”, so I cut out the filler and narrowed it down to 20 categories. Still, even with some cruel Darwinistic trimming- it’s still a long list. No wonder the ceremony takes forever. Every year the Academy struggles to keep it under three hours and they constantly fail. Maybe if they spent less time trying to entertain us with gimmicks and songs, they’d have more than 45 seconds for the acceptance speeches.

Well, there are some good choices in there. I’m happy to see that Argo was nominated, but Ben Affleck got no love. Katheryn Bigelow and Tom Hooper, two recent winners, were also shunned whilst their movies weren’t. Meanwhile, as Emma Stone and Seth McFarlene pointed out in their announcement, every nominee in the “Best Supporting Actor” category has won before. Strange, but I digress…

Everything is set and the Oscars are happening mere hours from now. Here are my predictions:

Best Costume Design

All the nominated costumes, it seems, are period costumes. Great, the academy doesn’t exactly make it easy for themselves, do they? Jesus, such similarity. Tick tock tick tock…

Ok, ok! Mirror Mirror and Anna Karenina are certainly the most insanely overdone. The costumes in Lincoln, however, don’t distinguish themselves enough for me to put money on it. In the end I think…

…will probably walk away with the award. Why? Well, I think the love for Les Miserables will trump any sort of rational decision making. The grand scale of that film will no doubt have blown everyone away. It’s simply fixed in the judges minds. Personally, I’d like to see Anna Karenina get the award.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling

I will admit that the transformation of Anthony Hopkins into Hitchcock was magically impressive. Still, it’s a showcase example, meaning that I don’t think it’s enough to rally the full support of the Academy. The Hobbit is the exact opposite; an entire cast transformed…and not a small one at that. Still, I think the love for…

…will prevail once again. If I could choose, it would be The Hobbit.

Best Art Direction

But will that Les Miserables love diffuse into the Art Direction category. I’m going to put my balls on the line and say ‘no’. I think the Academy has too much of a conscience to let…

…walk away without an artistic award. After all they did give the the third in the trilogy the Best Picture award several years ago. Life of Pi and Lincoln will lose entirely I think, as well as Anna Karenina – even though that’s the one I’d like to see get it.

Best Sound Editing

Hmmm, sound editing; the editing together of sound recorded on set. It’s a tough one, but I think…

…will beat Argo, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, and Skyfall. Why? Well, Zero Dark Thirty is a very gritty real-world film. It’s very unpolished, so the use of real sounds becomes all that more apparent and influential when watching it.

Best Sound Mixing

Sound Mixing, on the other hand, totally goes to…

This nomination almost always goes to action films of some kind. I mean, these are the academy awards that the Transformers movies took home for goodness sake. I could see Life of Pi possibly getting it, but Lincoln and Argo have very little chance. I don’t even understand why Les Miserables is in this category, since the original audio that was recorded on the set is all anyone has talked about when it came to this movie. Oh well.

Best Visual Effects

Ok, now it gets interesting. In this category we have The Avengers and Prometheus making an appearance. Those are some serious contenders, and probably have more chance than The Hobbit or Snow White and the Huntsman – simply by virtue of the fact that those films didn’t resonate much in peoples memory. However, anyone who has seen…

….will bet their teeth on it. Ok, maybe not your teeth, but I can’t see how this ultra-visual spectacle of a movie can go home empty handed in this category.

Best Film Editing

This is where is really gets tricky. Argo and Zero Dark Thirty have some very similar editing, with very precise trimming together of handheld shots. Lincoln feels out of place here, as does Silver Linings Playbook. I’m going to say that…

…will get the editing award. The creative use of transitions in that film impressed me, and I have a sneaking suspicion that it’ll impress the Academy as well.

Best Cinematography

Anna Karenina and Django Unchained, right off the bat, are out. I give them little chance of winning. Life of Pi and Lincoln, however, make for some serious competition. Still, everyone loves Roger Deakins, so it’s going to have to be…

….and it will be interesting to see what happens afterwards, if I’m right, considering that Skyfall was shot digitally after Deakins finally “converted”.

Best Documentary

There’s only one documentary that people are really seriously talking about this year. No, it’s not How to Survive a Plague, though that one may possibly end up being the winner. It’s…

One of the most beautifully and meticulously crafted documentaries I’ve ever seen. It needs to win, and I think it will. There’s your hint.

Best Original Score

Hmmmm, yes hmmmm. I mean gee, hmmm. I don’t really know about this one. Nothing really stands out to me. Skyfall feels wrong, because it’s just so typically “bond”. Lincoln is boring, because the John Williams score seems so typical of Spielberg. Life of Pi’s musical score was moving, but unremarkable. Argo was….nothing to me in terms of music. I have to say…

…because he uses the sounds of the everyday motions and objects to his advantage, incorporating them into the score.

Best Foreign Language Film

Oh my god oh my god oh my god oh my god oh my god, will it be Kon-Tiki? Can my native country of Norway finally win an oscar? …no. (Incidentally, No is also the name of the Chilean nomination for Best Foreign Language film)

And appropriately so. Kon-Tiki is good, but not great. The same goes for every other film, like A Royal Affair and War Witch. But not…

Amour will win. How can it not? It’s also nominated for Best Picture, for crying out loud.

Best Animated Feature

This is where my personal feeling come into play. I would love to see ParaNorman win. If it did, the Academy would have gained some serious respect from me and my blog. I don’t think it will, though. I also don’t think Pirates: Band of Misfits, or Frankenweenie will either. It seems, to me, to be a toss up between Brave and Wreck-It Ralph. I’m going to go for…

Everything just seems to click with Wreck-It Ralph. It’s a genuinely good movie that kids and adults both loved, along with critics. The animation is also new and slick, instead of retro and unpolished.

Best Adapted Screenplay

I won’t waste your time. I’m pretty confident on this one. It’s going to be…

Look, everyone loves Lincoln’s speeches. How could a movie that consists of him speaking for hours not get the win? Silver Linings Playbook and Argo might be in with a shot, but I’m not too hopeful for Life of Pi and Beasts of the Southern Wild.

Best Original Screenplay

It could very well be Amour. It may indeed be Moonrise Kingdom. But if you push me, I’ll have to say…

…simply because it feels like his year. Django Unchained was loved by so many, and frankly his competition this year feels weak. Tarantino won the golden globe, so his chances are good. I hope, or dare I say ‘expect’, to see him up there with his giant head (literally and figuratively) – giggling geekishly over his hard earned statue.

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

There’s a lot to discuss here. Robert DeNiro recently had a breakdown during an interview with Katie Couric when talking about his experiences with bipolar disorder and how it influenced his decision to take the part in Silver Linings Playbook (believe me, that will play a part in all of this). Philip Seymour Hoffman is my pick to win, and has delivered the must underrated performance this year in The Master. Alan Arkin played such a memorable comic relief character in Argo, and Christoph Waltz was so grandfather-like and adorable in Django Unchained. Christoph will not win, however, on account of the fact that his performance too much resembles Hans Landa in Inglorious Basterds – which he already won the oscar for. The winner, I very much suspect, will be…

Best Actor in a Supporting Role

….but god knows how happy he’ll be about it. He wasn’t exactly buzzing at the Golden Globes.

Best Actress in a Supporting Role

You’ve heard everyone say this. The undisputed best actress in a supporting role this year will be…

I’m not even going to list the others. If she doesn’t get the award there will be a major upset. Everyone is expecting to see Anne’s beaming eyebrows and teeth up there bawling out of happiness, not in the front row faking a gracious loss.

Best Actor in a Leading Role

And naturally it follows as well that…

…will win in this one. It’s all anyone is talking about. At this point there’s no way I can imagine anyone else on that stage.

Best Actress in a Leading Role

But this one is hard. I wouldn’t be surprised if Zero Dark Thirty‘s Jessica Chastain snatches this thing up at the last minute. A strong female role in a historically important film might just be the thing needed to sway the judges. Jennifer Lawrence winning for Silver Linings Playbook would be a great surprise, especially considering her influential status with the Hunger Games crowd. Quvenzhane Wallis winning may quite possibly be the most inspirational moment in oscar history, given that she’s the youngest person to ever be nominated. It really is anyone’s game…

…except Naomi Watts in The Impossible. She won’t win.

And I’m gonna stick my neck out there and say…

…the oldest nominee ever in this category, age 86. She’s someone everyone respects merely for the fact that she’s still alive and kicking. This is her last chance to win it, so they’ll give it to her. Congratulation Academy, you can sleep at night once you do this.

Best Director

And now we have the category that’s making everyone’s head spin. No one knows what’s going to happen here. Ben Affleck and Tom Hooper, the two biggest favourites this year, aren’t nominated.

Michael Haneke, director of Amour is an underground favourite. Also…he’s very old.

Silver Linings Playbook‘s David O. Russell is a vicious prick who’s not looked upon too favourably by the Academy, or anyone else for that matter, on a personal level. That will no doubt play a factor. If you want to see why I called him a prick, you can find out here.

Beasts of the Southern Wild is the first film Ben Zeitlin has ever directed, so I certainly wouldn’t put him down as a sure thing. Imagine, though, how exciting it would be for him if he did win. The Academy is only human, so it must be on their minds too.

Ang Lee did such a spectacular job of putting together Life of Pi in a breathtaking and yet comprehensible manner. It won’t go unnoticed, that’s for sure. I wonder, however, how much the sensitive edgeless nature of it will add or detract from its strength in the category.

I think in the end the Academy will go for…

Best Director

He’s safe, he’s strong, and it’s an important piece of work.

Best Picture

And finally, it’s the big one.

Firstly, let me say that Django Unchained and Silver Linings Playbook don’t have a fucking chance. Good, got those two out of the way.

Zero Dark Thirty is a very unlikely win because of it’s striking similarity to The Hurt Locker.

Amour and Beasts of the Southern Wild are both tiny indie favourites…but I don’t have high hopes for them.

The real contest is between Life of Pi, Lincoln, Les Miserables and…

I’m saying it. Argo will win Best Picture this year. I’ve been a fan of it since it was brought to my attention, and I think the story works so beautifully for every audience.

Les Miserables is its biggest nemesis, and it wouldn’t be shock to my system if I turned out to be wrong, but Argo will beat it. I think it deserves to win, and when it does…not if, when…The Academy will know once and for all that they robbed Affleck of a well deserved award.

Alright, it’s now 3 AM here in Scandinavia so the awards are just about to start. Talk about “last minute”, but I think it’s still important to have these prediction on record. Afterwards I’ll let you know how I did. I’m hoping to get at least 1/3 of them correct. If I bomb completely…do I reconsider careers? Clearly I’ll be out of touch with the industry…that can’t be a good thing.

fingers crossed!

– Rant Over….Awards Begun…

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  1. Pingback: Ignoradamus 2014 | Cinema Rant

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