Sunday, February 26, 2012

Oscar Predictions 2012

That annual post where I predict, nitpick, and whenever I can, eviscerate the yearly academy award winners.
2012 wasn't a bad year for movies. For all that it may have lacked (see the sorry summer blockbuster season, or the dearth of great performances) it made up for in some ambitious work behind the camera from a host of directors new and old. And as my forthcoming film awards, complete with a top 25 favorite flicks, will bear witness to, it was a year with surprising deep pockets.
Of course, you wouldn't know it from looking at the Academy's choices, collectively the most uninspiring batch since the dreaded 2005 (06' was a worse year, but the nominees made the best of it). It's not without bright spots. Best Director is particularly swanky, even with that pesky Alexander Payne invited to the party, and across the board there are some delightful inclusions that weren't necessarily expected, such as Drive and Jane Eyre nabbing one nod apiece, or the oddball Animated Feature category. But overall, there's just not a whole lot that interests me here, and I'll illustrate that with a small teaser for my own personal top 25. The Academy's Best Picture category of nine manages 3 films in common with my own list, not bad at all in my opinion, but turn instead to the 20 acting nominees and only 2 performances hail from that same grouping on my list. This has really been the season of sad Tristan. Yeah, I do have a few horses in this race (and they will still probably finish ahead of Mr. Spielberg's) but I've braced myself for the most unmagical Oscar ceremony in recent memory. In fact, I'll be working, and not racing home too fast afterward either. That'll show 'em. See how much I care.
Well, enough to still make predictions. So that's what you're looking at. Commentary where it feels right. And yeah, there are still a handful of these I've not seen, a few of which I will continue to avoid.

Best Picture

Will Win: The Artist
Should Win*: Hugo
Shouldn't Be There: The Help

*Should Win reflects only my pick among the nominees. Personal winners coming very, very soon.

Best Director
Will Win: Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist

Should Win: Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life
Shouldn't Be There: Alexander Payne, The Descendants

A great category, with three old dogs who rightly earn there spots, and a frontrunner who at the very least left an impression. This may all just be a dream of Alexander Payne's, who I'm still convinced directed his movie while sleepwalking.

Best Actor
Will Win: Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Should Win: Gary Oldman, Tinker Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Shouldn't Be There: George Clooney, The Descendants

Best Actress
Will Win: Viola Davis, The Help
Should Win: Rooney Mara, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Shouldn't Be There: absolutely everyone but Mara, but especially Glenn Close

Rooney Mara's nomination single-handedly stopped my head from exploding on nomination morning. Oh, and yeah, Streep is probably in a good place to take it too, but it would really just be better for all concerned if Davis took it so let's go with that.

Best Supporting Actor
Will Win: Christopher Plummer, Beginners
Should Win: Christopher Plummer, Beginners
Shouldn't Be There: Jonah Hill, Moneyball

Jonah Hill is also in Alexander Payne's dream. Really, wtf is he doing here? He did nothing in that movie except speak math. And now we have to call him, Oscar Nominee, Jonah Hill. This fact is slowly killing me.

Best Supporting Actress
Will Win: Octavia Spencer, The Help
Should Win: Berenice Bejo, The Artist
Shouldn't Be There: Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids

Not a great category, but not as bad as some of the films involved would suggest. Bejo, McTeer and Chastain are all really good, and Spencer alright I suppose. But let's just not talk about McCarthy, k?

Best Original Screenplay
Will Win: A Separation
Should Win: A Separation
Shouldn't Be Nominated: Bridesmaids

There is really only one correct choice here.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Will Win: The Descendants
Should Win: Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
Shouldn't Be Nominated: The Ides of March

Best Film Editing
Will Win: The Artist
Should Win: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Shouldn't Be There: The Descendants (I truly do not understand)

Best Cinematography
Will Win: The Tree of Life
Should Win: The Tree of Life
Shouldn't Be There: The Artist

They may be old as fuck, but I refuse to believe that the average Academy voter is blind. Hence why the only correct choice is The Tree of Life.

Best Costume Design
Will Win: Hugo
Should Win: probably Hugo, but really, Jane Eyre

Shouldn't Be There: Eh, it's all fair

Best Art Direction
Will Win: Hugo
Should Win: Hugo
Shouldn't Be There: Midnight in Paris (really liked the movie, but this is random)

Best Makeup
Will Win: Albert Nobbs
Should Win: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II
Shouldn't Be There: no complaints

Best Sound Mixing
Will Win: War Horse
Should Win: Hugo

Best Sound Editing

Will Win: Hugo
Should Win: Hugo, but I kinda want to cheer for Drive

Best Visual Effects
Will Win: Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Should Win: Hugo
But Really: Where the fuck is Tree of Life

Best Original Score
Will Win: The Artist
Should Win: Hugo
Shouldn't Be There: War Horse

Best Original Song
Will Win: Real in Rio, Rio
Shouldn't Be There: this category

Best Foreign-Language Film
Will Win: In Darkness
Should Win: A Separation

Ok, so not fair to really comment here since I've only seen A Separation, which clearly I loved, but given how wacky foreign film always ends up, I just can't go with that for my prediction. And when in doubt, go WWII.

Best Animated Feature
Will Win: Rango

Rango did kind of rock, but it was the only nominee (and animated film!) that I saw all year so I can't really say. Would be cool to see one of the foreign films nab a win.

Best Animated Short
Will Win: The Fantastic Flying Books of Dr. Morris Lessmore

Best Documentary
Will Win: Undefeated

Best Documentary Short
Will Win: Saving Face

Best Live-Action Short

Will Win: Tuba Atlantic

And with that, I am quite ready to go to sleep. This was not supposed to take up so much of my time this year.