Monthly Archives: February 2015

87th Academy Awards: Nominees & Predictions

The 85th Academy Awards® will air live on Oscar® Sunday, February 24, 2013.

Prediction: My best attempt at pre-determining what the panel will choose to be victorious in each respective category.

Preference: What I feel should win the category outright.

N/A: At least half of the respective categories nominees I have not seen or heard, therefore a prediction or preference would be unfair.

 

BEST MOTION PICTURE OF THE YEAR:

AMERICAN SNIPER:

CLINT EASTWOOD, ROBERT LORENZ, ANDREW LAZAR, BRADLEY COOPER AND PETER MORGAN, PRODUCERS

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE): (Preference)

ALEJANDRO G. IÑÁRRITU, JOHN LESHER AND JAMES W. SKOTCHDOPOLE, PRODUCERS

BOYHOOD: (Prediction)

RICHARD LINKLATER AND CATHLEEN SUTHERLAND, PRODUCERS

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL:

WES ANDERSON, SCOTT RUDIN, STEVEN RALES AND JEREMY DAWSON, PRODUCERS

THE IMITATION GAME:

NORA GROSSMAN, IDO OSTROWSKY AND TEDDY SCHWARZMAN, PRODUCERS

SELMA:

CHRISTIAN COLSON, OPRAH WINFREY, DEDE GARDNER AND JEREMY KLEINER, PRODUCERS

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING:

TIM BEVAN, ERIC FELLNER, LISA BRUCE AND ANTHONY MCCARTEN, PRODUCERS

WHIPLASH:

JASON BLUM, HELEN ESTABROOK AND DAVID LANCASTER, PRODUCERS

 

PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE:

STEVE CARELL:

FOXCATCHER

BRADLEY COOPER:

AMERICAN SNIPER

BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH:

THE IMITATION GAME

MICHAEL KEATON: (Preference)

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE)

EDDIE REDMAYNE: (Prediction)

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING

 

PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE:

MARION COTILLARD:

TWO DAYS, ONE NIGHT

FELICITY JONES:

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING

JULIANNE MOORE: (Prediction)

STILL ALICE

ROSAMUND PIKE: (Preference)

GONE GIRL

REESE WITHERSPOON:

WILD

 

PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE:

ROBERT DUVALL:

THE JUDGE

ETHAN HAWKE:

BOYHOOD

EDWARD NORTON:

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE)

MARK RUFFALO:

FOXCATCHER

J.K. SIMMONS: (Prediction, Preference)

WHIPLASH

 

PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE:

PATRICIA ARQUETTE: (Prediction)

BOYHOOD

LAURA DERN:

WILD

KEIRA KNIGHTLEY:

THE IMITATION GAME

EMMA STONE: (Preference)

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE)

MERYL STREEP:

INTO THE WOODS

 

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE FILM OF THE YEAR: (N/A)

BIG HERO 6:

DON HALL, CHRIS WILLIAMS AND ROY CONLI

THE BOXTROLLS:

ANTHONY STACCHI, GRAHAM ANNABLE AND TRAVIS KNIGHT

HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2:

DEAN DEBLOIS AND BONNIE ARNOLD

SONG OF THE SEA:

TOMM MOORE AND PAUL YOUNG

THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA:

ISAO TAKAHATA AND YOSHIAKI NISHIMURA

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN DIRECTING:

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE): (Preference)

ALEJANDRO G. IÑÁRRITU

BOYHOOD: (Prediction)

RICHARD LINKLATER

FOXCATCHER:

BENNETT MILLER

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL:

WES ANDERSON

THE IMITATION GAME:

MORTEN TYLDUM

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN CINEMATOGRAPHY:

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE): (Preference)

EMMANUEL LUBEZKI

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL: (Prediction)

ROBERT YEOMAN

IDA:

LUKASZ ZAL AND RYSZARD LENCZEWSKI

MR. TURNER:

DICK POPE

UNBROKEN:

ROGER DEAKINS

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN COSTUME DESIGN:

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL: (Prediction)

MILENA CANONERO

INHERENT VICE: (Preference)

MARK BRIDGES

INTO THE WOODS:

COLLEEN ATWOOD

MALEFICENT:

ANNA B. SHEPPARD

MR. TURNER:

JACQUELINE DURRAN

 

BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE: (N/A)

CITIZENFOUR:

LAURA POITRAS, MATHILDE BONNEFOY AND DIRK WILUTZKY

FINDING VIVIAN MAIER:

JOHN MALOOF AND CHARLIE SISKEL

LAST DAYS IN VIETNAM:

RORY KENNEDY AND KEVEN MCALESTER

THE SALT OF THE EARTH:

WIM WENDERS, JULIANO RIBEIRO SALGADO AND DAVID ROSIER

VIRUNGA:

ORLANDO VON EINSIEDEL AND JOANNA NATASEGARA

 

BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT: (N/A)

CRISIS HOTLINE: VETERANS PRESS 1:

ELLEN GOOSENBERG KENT AND DANA PERRY

JOANNA:

ANETA KOPACZ

OUR CURSE:

TOMASZ ŚLIWIŃSKI AND MACIEJ ŚLESICKI

THE REAPER (LA PARKA):

GABRIEL SERRA ARGUELLO

WHITE EARTH:

J. CHRISTIAN JENSEN

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN FILM EDITING:

AMERICAN SNIPER:

JOEL COX AND GARY D. ROACH

BOYHOOD: (Prediction)

SANDRA ADAIR

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL:

BARNEY PILLING

THE IMITATION GAME:

WILLIAM GOLDENBERG

WHIPLASH: (Preference)

TOM CROSS

 

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM OF THE YEAR:

IDA:

POLAND

LEVIATHAN: (Prediction, Preference)

RUSSIA

TANGERINES:

ESTONIA

TIMBUKTU:

MAURITANIA

WILD TALES:

ARGENTINA

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING:

FOXCATCHER: (Prediction, Preference)

BILL CORSO AND DENNIS LIDDIARD

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL:

FRANCES HANNON AND MARK COULIER

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY:

ELIZABETH YIANNI-GEORGIOU AND DAVID WHITE

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC WRITTEN FOR MOTION PICTURES (ORIGINAL SCORE):

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL:

ALEXANDRE DESPLAT

THE IMITATION GAME:

ALEXANDRE DESPLAT

INTERSTELLAR: (Preference)

HANS ZIMMER

MR. TURNER:

GARY YERSHON

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING: (Prediction)

JÓHANN JÓHANNSSON

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN MUSIC WRITTEN FOR MOTION PICTURES (ORIGINAL SONG): (N/A)

EVERYTHING IS AWESOME:

THE LEGO MOVIE
MUSIC AND LYRIC BY SHAWN PATTERSON

GLORY:

SELMA
MUSIC AND LYRIC BY JOHN STEPHENS AND LONNIE LYNN

GRATEFUL:

BEYOND THE LIGHTS
MUSIC AND LYRIC BY DIANE WARREN

I’M NOT GONNA MISS YOU:

GLEN CAMPBELL…I’LL BE ME
MUSIC AND LYRIC BY GLEN CAMPBELL AND JULIAN RAYMOND

LOST STARS:

BEGIN AGAIN
MUSIC AND LYRIC BY GREGG ALEXANDER AND DANIELLE BRISEBOIS

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION DESIGN:

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL: (Prediction)

PRODUCTION DESIGN: ADAM STOCKHAUSEN SET DECORATION: ANNA PINNOCK

THE IMITATION GAME:

PRODUCTION DESIGN: MARIA DJURKOVIC SET DECORATION: TATIANA MACDONALD

INTERSTELLAR: (Preference)

PRODUCTION DESIGN: NATHAN CROWLEY SET DECORATION: GARY FETTIS

INTO THE WOODS:

PRODUCTION DESIGN: DENNIS GASSNER SET DECORATION: ANNA PINNOCK

MR. TURNER:

PRODUCTION DESIGN: SUZIE DAVIES SET DECORATION: CHARLOTTE WATTS

 

BEST ANIMATED SHORT FILM: (N/A)

THE BIGGER PICTURE:

DAISY JACOBS AND CHRISTOPHER HEES

THE DAM KEEPER:

ROBERT KONDO AND DICE TSUTSUMI

FEAST:

PATRICK OSBORNE AND KRISTINA REED

ME AND MY MOULTON:

TORILL KOVE

A SINGLE LIFE:

JORIS OPRINS

 

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT FILM: (N/A)

AYA:

ODED BINNUN AND MIHAL BREZIS

BOOGALOO AND GRAHAM:

MICHAEL LENNOX AND RONAN BLANEY

BUTTER LAMP (LA LAMPE AU BEURRE DE YAK):

HU WEI AND JULIEN FÉRET

PARVANEH:

TALKHON HAMZAVI AND STEFAN EICHENBERGER

THE PHONE CALL:

MAT KIRKBY AND JAMES LUCAS

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN SOUND EDITING:

AMERICAN SNIPER:

ALAN ROBERT MURRAY AND BUB ASMAN

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE): (Prediction, Preference)

MARTÍN HERNÁNDEZ AND AARON GLASCOCK

THE HOBBIT: THE BATTLE OF THE FIVE ARMIES:

BRENT BURGE AND JASON CANOVAS

INTERSTELLAR:

RICHARD KING

UNBROKEN:

BECKY SULLIVAN AND ANDREW DECRISTOFARO

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN SOUND MIXING:

AMERICAN SNIPER:

JOHN REITZ, GREGG RUDLOFF AND WALT MARTIN

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE):

JON TAYLOR, FRANK A. MONTAÑO AND
THOMAS VARGA

INTERSTELLAR:

GARY A. RIZZO, GREGG LANDAKER AND MARK WEINGARTEN

UNBROKEN:

JON TAYLOR, FRANK A. MONTAÑO AND DAVID LEE

WHIPLASH: (Prediction, Preference)

CRAIG MANN, BEN WILKINS AND THOMAS CURLEY

 

ACHIEVEMENT IN VISUAL EFFECTS:

CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER:

DAN DELEEUW, RUSSELL EARL, BRYAN GRILL AND DAN SUDICK

DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES:

JOE LETTERI, DAN LEMMON, DANIEL BARRETT AND ERIK WINQUIST

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY:

STEPHANE CERETTI, NICOLAS AITHADI, JONATHAN FAWKNER AND PAUL CORBOULD

INTERSTELLAR: (Prediction, Preference)

PAUL FRANKLIN, ANDREW LOCKLEY, IAN HUNTER AND SCOTT FISHER

X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST:

RICHARD STAMMERS, LOU PECORA, TIM CROSBIE AND CAMERON WALDBAUER

 

ADAPTED SCREENPLAY:

AMERICAN SNIPER:

WRITTEN BY JASON HALL

THE IMITATION GAME: (Prediction)

WRITTEN BY GRAHAM MOORE

INHERENT VICE: (Preference)

WRITTEN FOR THE SCREEN BY PAUL THOMAS ANDERSON

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING:

SCREENPLAY BY ANTHONY MCCARTEN

WHIPLASH:

WRITTEN BY DAMIEN CHAZELLE

 

ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY:

BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE): (Prediction, Preference)

WRITTEN BY ALEJANDRO G. IÑÁRRITU,
NICOLÁS GIACOBONE, ALEXANDER DINELARIS, JR. & ARMANDO BO

BOYHOOD:

WRITTEN BY RICHARD LINKLATER

FOXCATCHER:

WRITTEN BY E. MAX FRYE AND DAN FUTTERMAN

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL:

SCREENPLAY BY WES ANDERSON
STORY BY WES ANDERSON & HUGO GUINNESS

NIGHTCRAWLER:

WRITTEN BY DAN GILROY

 

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What do you think of my selections? Have a few guesses of your own? Feel free to comment in the section below!

 

Top 10 Films of 2014

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Just a quick update before we get started. I’ll have my Oscar predictions and results from the latest Vote! segment out this week, so make sure to get your votes in before it closes. Additionally, hopefully, my review of “Kumiko: The Treasure Hunter,” a film I greatly adore, will be published before week’s end. Now let’s get going…

25: The Raid 2: Berandal (Gareth Evans)
24: Snowpiercer (Joon-Ho Bong)
23: Foxcatcher (Bennett Miller)
22: The Trip to Italy (MIchael Winterbottom)
21: Only Lovers Left Alive (Jim Jarmusch)

20: The Rover (David Michod)
19: I Origins (Mike Cahill)
18: Frank (Lenny Abrahamson)
17: The Imitation Game (Morten Tyldum)
16: Inherent Vice (Paul Thomas Anderson)

15: Whiplash (Damien Chazelle)
14: The Drop (Michael R. Roskam)
13: Nymphomaniac (Lars Von Trier)
12: Under the Skin (Jonathan Glazer), A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (Ana Lily Amirpour)
11: Birdman (Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu)

10: Starred Up (David Mackenzie)/(’71, Yann Demange, 2015?)

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Are we going with 2014 or 2015 for “’71?” It’s rather comical that up-and-coming super-stud Jack O’Connell had three films screen this year, the worst of which received the widest release. “Starred Up” is a hard-hitting prison drama that’s lifted to towering heights by the performances of O’Connell and co-star Ben Mendelsohn. Swapping the more traditional, cringe-worthy visual aspects of the unflinching prison sub-genre (not all) for impenetrable dialogue and a vast array of relationships teetering on the brink, “Starred Up” will fill you with insight before knocking a few teeth down your throat.

9: Nightcrawler (Dan Gilroy) / Enemy (Dennis Villenueve)

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Very few have had quite as stellar a year as Jake Gyllenhaal in 2014, which is why I couldn’t help but rank this remarkable double-feature inside my top 10. This double-dose of Gyllenhaal showcases the actor’s staggering, at times terrifying range. It’s mind-blowing that Gyllenhaal didn’t garner an Oscar nomination for either of these two fantastic performances, but I digress.

8: The Guest (Adam Wingard)

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Containing easily the best soundtrack any film of 2014 had to offer, “The Guest” sees dynamic duo Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett reach new cult status. With incredibly charismatic performances from Dan Stevens and Maika Monroe, in addition to non-stop action “The Guest” is endlessly entertaining!

7: Locke (Steven Knight)

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Looked upon as a reliable, strong-minded scribe with a plethora of solid screenplays to his name, including the creation of “Peaky Blinders,” a personal television favourite of mine. Prior to 2014’s “Locke,” Steven Knight hadn’t much to brag about from behind the camera, but that quickly and assertively changed. Led by a phenomenal performance from occasional Knight collaborator Tom Hardy, “Locke” is a magnificent spectacle of the human experience.

6: A Most Violent Year (J. C. Chandor)

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This is the second consecutive year-end “best of” list J. C. Chandor has cracked for me, personally (All Is Lost, 2013). Much like last year’s film “All Is Lost,” “A Most Violent Year” didn’t get much love come award season, but once again that didn’t discourage my ranking it inside the top 10. With formidable performances from its entire cast, including Jessica Chastain, Oscar Isaac, and Albert Brooks, a subtle, yet immensely powerful story, gloomy atmosphere, and the sure-handed direction from Chandor, “A Most Violent Year” is a must-see to any who missed it.

5: Force Majeure (Ruben Ostlund)

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As I’m sure most of you are aware, comedy cinema doesn’t sit too well with me. Which should only speak volumes in regards to “Force Majeure’s” placement on this list. Providing the laughs, abundantly, and a rock-solid story that’s never as easy to watch as its breezy demeanour would insist, “Force Majeure’s” Oscar snub is almost as unforgivable as the absence of “Mommy” in the Best Foreign Language Film category.

4: Gone Girl (David Fincher)

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To say that I adore David Fincher and his very impressive resume would be a massive understatement. “Gone Girl,” although not the illustrious filmmakers best work to date, certainly has a place amongst the top of his efforts. Further cementing Ben Affleck as a force to be reckoned with both on and off screen and earning Rosamund Pike an Oscar nomination, deservedly so I might add, “Gone Girl” mixes all the potent Fincher facets into one hell of a morbid cocktail.

3: Leviathan (Andrey Zvyagintsev)

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The odds-on favourite to take home “best foreign language film” at this year’s Academy Awards, “Leviathan” is an aptly titled juggernaut. Breathtaking visuals, impressive performances, and an unfathomable socio-political complexity are just a few tangents of what makes “Leviathan” triumphant.

2: Mommy (Xavier Dolan)

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Directed and written by home-grown Canadian wunderkind Xavier Dolan, “Mommy” catapults the young filmmaker to the relative peak of my top 10. I’d feel very unpatriotic leaving Dolan’s latest off this list, but rest-assured he earned this spot. “Mommy” is brutal, unforgiving, whilst conversely evoking the most genuine and rooted responses of the emotional spectrum. Performed with the utmost investment by the entire ensemble, “Mommy” is one foreign language film you won’t want to miss.

1: Interstellar (Christopher Nolan)

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It doesn’t exactly bode well for the credibility of Nolan’s latest topping this list, seeing as I could be considered the leader of Nolan’s group of so-called “Fanboys,” but I can’t stress “Interstellar’s” greatness enough. You’ve either seen this film by now and loved it or hated it. I fail to see the middle ground and apparently so does everyone else. With monumental visuals, a complex, out-of-this-world premise that simultaneously showcases the down-to-earth emotionality and intellectual reach of the human race. “Interstellar” will leave you in awe and down-right flabbergasted. Thankfully, this film offers much post-viewing reading that should solve any issues or curiosity.

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What did you think of my list? Have a list of your own? Let me know in the comment section below!