Bitter, Bitter Oscar Predictions

by thethreepennyguignol

Another year of film floats by, another excuse for me to bitterly rant about the Oscars because I still haven’t been sworn on to the official selection panel (those arrogant pricks). Neil Patrick Harris will host the awards tonight, and if he doesn’t do something at least as good as or better than his opening for the 2013 Tony Awards-

– Then we’ll have final proof that musical theatre is ultimately a more worthwhile medium than film. But anyway, I have a big fuckton of OPINIONS to drop on your heads, so let’s take a look at what’s going to happen at the Oscars tonight, versus what I actually want to happen.

Best Picture

American Sniper

Birdman

Boyhood

The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Imitation Game

Selma

The Theory of Everything

Whiplash

Notes: It’s really odd that Selma has appeared in the best picture category but not been nominated for actor, actress, screenplay, or director. Surely you can’t be the best movie without having the best something else too? Who cares, it’s the only one of this list directed by a woman (Represent, Ava DuVernay).

THEY USED A SPEECH FROM MACBETH IN THIS MOVIE THAT I HAVE TACKED TO MY BEDROOM MIRROR AAAAEEEUUUUURRRRGGGHHH

What should win: Birdman. There’s no question that Birdman is the most original, zeitgeist-riding, ambitious and intelligent movie on this list, and I cannot implore you enough to see it. It’s skewering of the industry, however, might not go down so well, and I’d settle for Grand Budapest Hotel if not, because there’s lots going on under the surface of the seemingly straightforward caper.

What will win: Boyhood. In something I’ve dubbed The Scorcese Effect, directors and actors receive worship from the Academy just because the Academy realized they should have worshipped them long before now (because if you really think The Departed- which Scorcese got his Oscar for- was better than Goodfellas you can go back and snuggle down in front of your My Little Pojny DVDs). Linklater probably does deserve an Oscar for this, but I find the very thought of this movie enough to send me into a comatose state. I am horrified to consider the thought that American Sniper might get this, though.

Best Director

Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel

Alejandro G Inarritu, Birdman

Richard Linklater, Boyhood

Bennett Miller, Foxcatcher

Morten Tyldum, The Imitation Game

Notes: I feel like Grand Budapest was out at least ten years ago.

Go and watch Innaritu’s transcendent Amores Perros though. DO IT.

What should win: Probably Inarritu, because his direction was stridently, seriously stylish and Hitchcockian in it’s ingeniousness. I think it’s going to be all or nothing for Birdman, so if this doesn’t get best picture I’ll pick out Bennet Miller for the stunning, slow-burning Foxcatcher.

What will win: Richard Linklater. See above. I’ve got to add that I’m stunned to see the wildly average The Imitation Game and Theory of Everything nominated for so much, and I sincerely hope they don’t do that well in the face of some genuinely boundary-pushing cinema.

Best Actor

Steve Carell, Foxcatcher

Bradley Cooper, American Sniper

Benedict Cumberbatch, The Imitation Game

Michael Keaton, Birdman

Eddie Redmayne, The Theory of Everything

Notes: If Bradley Cooper wins this- and I say this as a sworn-in Bradley Cooper enthusiast- I’m going to be somewhere between thoroughly unimpressed and fully murderous, depending on how far this comes into the ceremony and how much wine has been drunk.

I’ll admit that the first time he walked on screen in Nightcrawler my heart exploded. Because pretty>evil. Because I am a flawed person.

Who should win: Jake Gyllenhal. BECAUSE NIGHTCRAWLER WAS A SENSATIONAL PERFORMANCE AND WHOEVER MADE THE DESICION TO COMPLETELY IGNORE IT IN FAVOUR OF THE THEORY OF NOTHING AND THE IMITATION OF A GOOD MOVIE CAN ROT IN AN OVERWROUGHT, OVER-DRAMATIC VERSION OF HELL URGH FUCK THE ACADEMY. Would also be okay seeing Keaton win, typecast as he was- it was a screen-dominating performance. Steve Carrel would be fine too, but he’s got plenty more movies in him to pick up an award yet.

Who will win: Eddie Remayne. He was decent, don’t get me wrong, but the whole movie was just a bit above average and his performance was just okay. It seems that people got confused over Stephen Hawking being a fascinating, compellingly interesting man and a film about him being good by default.

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

Notes: I went to high school with Felicity Jones’ half-sister.

If looks could kill, I’d be going down on Rosamund Pike right now. Wait, what?

Who should win: ROSAMUND PIKE, BECAUSE FEMALE VILLAINS ARE EXCELLENT TOO. Next.

Who will win: Julianne Moore, as per the Scorcese Effect (although I have no doubt she was brilliant in a movie that I find to profoundly upsetting to think about seeing).

Best Supporting Actor

Robert Duvall, The Judge

Ethan Hawke, Boyhood

Edward Norton, Birdman

Mark Ruffalo, Foxcatcher

JK Simmons, Whiplash

Notes: Hold the fuck up, Robert Duvall was nominated for an Oscar?!

This look like a publicity shot from a shit new sitcom to anyone else?

Who should win: Again, although he was typecast as a moody, difficult character actor, Ed Norton did an amazing job in Birdman. Mark Ruffalo was also great in Foxcatcher, though it seems like the kind of role he could do in his sleep.

Who will win: JK Simmons. Yeah, alright- he probably deserves this by now.

Best Supporting Actress

Patricia Arquette, Boyhood

Laura Dern, Wild

Keira Knightley, The Imitation Game

Emma Stone, Birdman

Meryl Streep, Into the Woods

Notes:  I’d be surprised and unsurprised to see Meryl Streep win, partly because I think the Academy is contractually obliged to nominate for something every single year. I guarantee she’s been up for editing and sound design a few times, just to hold up their end of the bargain.

Rene Russo withers the testicles of the Academy with one glance.

Who should win: Rene Russo for Nightcrawler. HOW DARE YOU OVERLOOK SUCH A POWERFUL AND MATURE PERFORMANCE ACADEMY YOU WOULDN’T KNOW REAL ART IF IT CAME UP AND KNEED YOU IN THE BALLS AS HARD AS I’M PLANNING TO DO YOU PIECES OF SH-

Who will win: Ech, probably Laura Dern. Nice to see Emma Stone get a nomination, but there were better supporting actresses in that movie.

Best Original Screenplay

American Sniper

The Imitation Game

Inherent Vice

The Theory of Everything

Whiplash

I mean I just don’t get the fuss about this movie.

What should win: Whiplash. Just tight and well-written in this pretty bad-to-average lot of movies.

What will win: Urgh, probably The Theory of Everything Wrong with Academy-Baiting Movies.

Best Original Screenplay

Birdman

Boyhood

Foxcatcher

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Not enough actual crawling through the night for the literal-minded Academy.

What should win: NIGHTCRAWLER NIGHTCRAWLER NIGHTCRAWLER NIGHTCRAWLER NIGHTCRAWLER NIGHTCR-

What will win: Honestly, this is a good bunch. Out of the favourites I’m pulling for Birdman, but Boyhood is more ambitious and far more worthy.

Best Animated Feature

Big Hero 6

The Boxtrolls

How to Train Your Dragon 2

Song of the Sea

The Tale of Princess Kaguya

The Lego Movie, or “This Is Still Better Than the Last Three Films Liam Neeson Starred In”

What should win: What in the name of all that is good and chesty is The Lego Movie not doing here? Hilarious, touching, exciting, and innovatively animated, it’s beyond a disgrace that this hasn’t even had a nod.

What will win: Big Hero 6. No notes. It’s a great film. There’s just no Lego Batman in it.

And that’s me at the end of the list of things I can legitimately have an opinion on. Join me on Twitter tonight for a live-tweet of the ceremony as long as I can be fucked to stay awake, and again the next morning for copious drinking/rending of garments over the results. Be there, or be anywhere else. Send an ambulance if American Sniper wins.

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