Sunday, 2 March 2014

2014 Academy Award Predictions


So, here we are again, and the annual Academy Awards are upon us once more! To be hosted this evening by the wonderful Ellen DeGeneres, it is time again to honour the greatest films of the 2013/2014 season. Now, some criticise the Oscars for being pretentious, and perhaps even fixed, or biased. Whatever your opinions towards this ceremony,  it is undoubtedly a night for all to appreciate and celebrate what a truly incredible year 2013 was for film. Ranging from the superhero movies to period dramas, from space adventures to apocalyptic comedies, and from small snowmen to massive dragons, 2013 boasts some truly exceptional films, but also some of lesser quality (Movie 43, I'm looking at you). However, tonight only the best will walk away with those prestigious trophies. Now, let's get to it..

Best Picture:
12 Years A Slave
American Hustle
Captain Phillips
Dallas Buyers Club
Gravity
Her
Nebraska
Philomena
The Wolf of Wall Street

What Will Win: This is very much a two-horse race. It;s nice this year to not have a pre-determined winner. Whilst many favour 12 Years A Slave, no-one can deny Gravity's chance at an upset. However, the likelihood is that 12 Years A Slave will claim the big award tonight.

What Should Win: Personally, I would love nothing more than for Gravity to walk away with this. However, 12 Years A Slave is such a worthy winner anyway, I really don't mind.


Best Director:
David O. Russell - American Hustle
Alfonso Cuarón - Gravity
Alexander Payne - Nebraska
Steve McQueen - 12 Years A Slave
Martin Scorsese - The Wolf of Wall Street

Who Will Win: Cuarón has the upper hand here. Creating a technically innovative film, powered by a remarkable story with a fantastic lead performance won't go unrewarded.

Who Should Win: Again, Cuarón.

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

Who Will Win: Again, this is really a two horse race. Ejiofor seemed the early favourite, but McConaughey has swept every ceremony he's been up for so far. Based on this, McConaughey seems to be front runner here.

Who Should Win: Well, DiCaprio would be nice, but it won't happen. An intense performance about slavery told over a 12 year period? Give this trophy to Ejifor, please.

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

Who Will Win: Well, Blanchett has won everything so far, and nothing seems set to stop her here.

Who Should Win: Blanchett's performance in Blue Jasmine was incredible, but also a relatively simple role that could really have been done by any talented actress. I would much rather the award went to Bullock or Dench for roles that I could not image anyone else undertaking, but also played with equal quality.

Best Supporting Actor:
Jared Leto - Dallas Buyers Club
Jonah Hill - The Wolf of Wall Street
Bradley Cooper - American Hustle
Michael Fassbender - 12 Years A Slave
Barkhad Abdi - Captain Phillips

Who Will Win: Again, Leto has stolen everything so far, and deservedly so. He seems set to claim his first Academy Award tonight.

Who Should Win: Leto, nothing else to be said.

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

Who Will Win: Again, very much only two contenders here. A previous winner vs a complete newcomer. I believe the Academy will opt for Lawrence.

Who Should Win: As incredible as Lawrence, was no-one can compete with Nyong'o, here. her portrayal as Patsey was sublime, and deserves at least one major award.

Best Original Screenplay:
Her
American Hustle
Blue Jasmine
Dallas Buyers Club
Nebraska

What Will Win: American Hustle is the most voter friendly here, and seems likely to take this.

What Should Win: It wasn't the best of the nominees, but Her's screenplay was by far above anything else here. The writing was phenomenal, and it would be nice to see it take away an award tonight.

Best Adapted Screenplay:
Before Midnight
12 Years A Slave
Philomena
The Wolf of Wall Street
Captain Phillips

What Will Win: Difficult choice, here. It could really by any. However, I believe the Academy will opt for 12 Years A Slave.

What Should Win: As it's unlikely to take anything else, and really was a powerfully written film, I support Philomena here.

Best Animated Feature:
Despicable Me 2
The Wind Rises
Frozen
The Croods
Ernest and Celestine

What Will Win: Frozen, annoyingly.

What Should Win: Well, Monsters University had my vote, but it lacks even a nomination. Out of the nominees I've seen, Frozen probably was the best, in a highly average year for animated films.

Best Original Score:
Gravity
The Book Thief
Saving Mr Banks
Her
Philomena

What Will Win: Gravity.

What Should Win: Gravity.

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

What Will Win: Let It Go- Frozen

What Should Win: The Moon Song- Her

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

What Will Win: Gravity.

What Should Win: Gravity.

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

What Will Win: Gravity.

What Should Win: Gravity.

Best Production Design:
Gravity
The Great Gatsby
Her
American Hustle
12 Years A Slave

What Will Win: Gravity

What Should Win: The Great Gatsby

Best Costume Design
American Hustle
The Grandmaster
The Invisible Woman
The Great Gatsby
12 Years A Slave

What Will Win: The Great Gatsby

What Should Win: The Great Gatsby

Best Make Up/ Hairstyling
Dallas Buyers Club
The Lone Ranger
Jackass: Bad Grampa

What Will Win: Dallas Buyers Club

What Should Win: Dallas Buyers Club

Best Cinematography:
Gravity
Inside Llewyn Davis
Nebraska
Prisoners
The Grandmaster

What Will Win: Gravity

What Should Win: Gravity

Best Film Editing:
12 Years A Slave
Captain Phillips
American Hustle
Gravity
Dallas Buyers Club

What Will Win: Gravity

What Should Win: Gravity

Best Visual Effects:
The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug
The Lone Ranger
Iron Man 3
Gravity
Star Trek: Into Darkness

What Will Win: Gravity

What Should Win: Gravity


So, overall it seems to look like quite a varied night. Whilst Gravity seems to set to sweep many of the technical awards, the screenplay and acting awards are nice split. based upon my predictions, here's a lowdown for the night:

Gravity: 8
Dallas Buyers Club: 3
12 Years A Slave: 2
American Hustle: 2
Frozen: 2
Blue Jasmine: 1
The Great Gatsby: 1

However, this could all change tonight. Maybe the Academy will throw a curve-ball and award Gravity Best Picture. Perhaps Dallas Buyers Club won't claim either Actor award. There's always a chance Cate Blanchett won't actually win, either. Whatever the outcome tonight, it is hard to deny the quality of 2013 in film. As a student myself, studying and aiming for a career in the film industry, a year like this is nothing but inspirational. Here's hoping 2014 will be just as impressive.

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