Oscar Nominees, Predictions, and Omissions

 

 

After  a couple of exciting Oscar years, the nominations this time around are  an uninspiring lot. Most of the top shelf movies went ignored, while the nominees come from the second tier.  There is little to root for, and,   with the exceptions of  the miscast “The Danish Girl” and the amateurish “Room,”  isn’t much to rail against.  Middle of the road mediocrity prevails.  So here we are,  the Oscar nominees for 2016:

 

Best Picture
The Big Short
Bridge of Spies
Brooklyn
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Room
Spotlight

The only contenders here are “The Revenant” and “Spotlight,” and the Academy could go either way.  While the speeches from the “Spotlight” group would be the stuff Oscar dreams are made up, with a gaggle of Hollywood celebrities standing in for the real heroes, the investigative journalists of the Boston Globe. “The Revenant” is the kind of boring, big budget. low grossing, prestige picture that needs the Oscar push to get people to belly up to the box office.  But the best movie of the year, by far, is “Youth,” the second  English language film from Italian director  Paolo Sorrentino, who gave us the 2014 winner for Best Foreign Film, “The Great Beauty.” No other film comes close to this masterpiece starring Michael Caine and Harvey Keitel, except perhaps “Carol,” which I have not yet seen and was not nominated, or “Brooklyn,” which was nominated, but I have not seen.

Best Actress

Cate Blanchett, Carol

Brie Larson, Room
Jennifer Lawrence, Joy
Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years
Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

The two top contenders are recent  winners, with Lawrence winning in 2013 and Blanchette taking it in 2014, so  the Oscar will go to sentimental favorite Charlotte Rampling, although Lawrence gave the performance of the year.

Best Actor
Bryan Cranston, Trumbo
Matt Damon, The Martian
Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant
Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs
Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

There is no reason not to give Leonardo DeCaprio his big moment in which  the world can pretend he is a great actor.  The industry needs a new great actor. The only competition is newcomer Bryan Cranston, star of the popular mini-series “Breaking Bad,” if only because they love to whine about the Hollywood Blacklist.  But Cranston, while he did a decent job in the role of Dalton Trumbo, is a newcomer as a leading man in film, and there is no need to boost his career at this time. the best actor of the year, however, was the un-nominated jake Gyllanhaal for his magnificent  performance as a light heavyweight boxer in  the under-seen “Southpaw.”

Best Supporting Actress
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Rooney Mara, Carol
Rachel McAdams, Spotlight
Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl
Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

There are some good performances here, but the Oscar should go to Rachel McAdams, a very good actress who has not yet  been properly acknowledged as such.

Best Supporting Actor
Christian Bale, “The Big Short”
Tom Hardy, “The Revenant”
Mark Ruffalo, “Spotlight”
Mark Rylance, “Bridge of Spies”
Sylvester Stallone, “Creed”

Again, this is anyone’s game.  Mark Ruffalo, like Rachel McAdams, is a fine actor who hasn’t received his due, and “Spotlight” was an actor’s picture.  Stallone was terrible in “Creed,”  but has a good chance with the sentimental vote.   The best performance, however, came from Mark Rylance  in “Bridge of Spies.”   My choise, however, is the un-nominated Paul Dano,, the best new actor to come along since Michael Shannon, in “Youth.”

Best Director
“The Big Short,” Adam McKayt.
“Mad Max: Fury Road,” George Miller
“The Revenant” Alejandro G. Iñárritu
“Room” Lenny Abrahamson
“Spotlight” Tom McCarthy

What a load of crappy directors.  If “The Revenant” takes Best Picture,  Alejandro G. Iñárritu may take the award for the second year in a row. Although I dislike his style, he did accomplish something grand as a director here.  But Tom McCarthy did a better job  of conventional directing in “Spotlight.”  Again, it is a toss-up.  The best directed films of the year,however, were  Sorrentino’s “Youth” and Hou Hsiao-Hsien’s “The Assassin,” both ignored by the Academy.

Best Adapted Screenplay 
The Big Short
Brooklyn
Carol
The Martian
Room

I think “The Martian” will win, but  the un-nominated “Joy” was infinitely better.

Best Original Screenplay
Bridge of Spies
Ex Machina
Inside Out
Spotlight
Straight Outta Compton

“Spotlight” will win.  The un-nominated  “Youth” was infinitely better.

Best Animated Feature
Anomalisa
Boy and the World
Inside Out
Shaun the Sheep Movie
When Marnie Was There

“Inside Out” will win.  “Anomalisa” should win.

Best Documentary Feature
Amy
Cartel Land
Look of Silence
What Happened Miss Simone
Winter on Fire

“Amy” will win.   “What Happened Miss Simone”  was infinitely better.  I have not seen  the other three,  so I may  well be wrong.

Best Foreign Language Film
“Embrace of the Serpent” Colombia
“Mustang” France
“Son of Saul” Hungary
“Theeb” Jordan
“A War” Denmark

I havent seen any of these, but I  can’t imagine any of them being better than the criminally neglected “The Assassin.”

Best Original Score
Bridge of Spies
Carol
The Hateful Eight
Sicario
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

A lot of crappy music  here, but Todd Haynes always does a good job with his soundtracks, choose him.  The Aademy will go with either “Bridge of Sighs” or “Star Wars,” if only because of their bad taste.

Best Original Song
“Earned It,” Fifty Shades of Grey
“Manta Ray,” Racing Extinction
“Simple song No. 3,” Youth
“Til it Happens to You,” The Hunting Ground
“Writing’s on the Wall,” Spectre

No idea.

Best Cinematography
Carol
The Hateful Eight
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Revenant
Sicario

“Revenant” for sure.  “The Assassin” was  better, but was not nominated.

Best Film Editing
The Big Short
Mad Max Fury Road
The Revenant
Spotlight
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

This award usually has nothing to do with the  quality of the editing but, like most of the technical awards, exist to pad a big winner or console the big losers.  So that ends my comments. Let me know what your thoughts are.

Best Production Design
Bridge of Spies
The Danish Girl
Mad Max Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Mad Max: Fury Road
The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out a Window and Disappeared
The Revenant

Best Costume Design
Carol
Cinderella
The Danish Girl
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Revenant

Best Animated Short
Bear Story
Prologue
Sanjay’s Super Team
We Can’t Live Without Cosmos
World of Tomorrow

Best Visual Effects
Ex Machina
Mad Max Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Sound Editing
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Sicario
Star Wars The Force Awakens

Best Sound Mixing
Bridge of Spies
Mad Max: Fury Road
The Martian
The Revenant
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Best Documentary Short
“Body Team 12”
“Chau, beyond the Lines”
“Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah”
“A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness”
“Last Day of Freedom” Dee Hibbert-Jones and Nomi Talisman

Best Live Action Short
“Ave Maria”
“Day One”
“Everything Will Be Okay (Alles Wird Gut)”
“Shok”
“Stutterer”

 

 

Advertisements

14 thoughts on “Oscar Nominees, Predictions, and Omissions

  1. Leo is not as bad as you dismiss, but we will have to agree to disagree. I have some films to watch before the event. Hoping to get to see Spotlight this weekend. I’m going to rent “The Assassin” since you love it so much. I’m curious about the Best Special Effects. I think it will go to Ex Machina.
    I missed The Martian but read the book. I would like to see Carol and Brooklyn (read the book) because I think the acting will be worth the price of admission. Sicario is a film that was admired by many a movie buff — I missed it, but would like to try to rent it.

    Like

    1. Leo is not bad, but he isnt even in the same class as the great actors. And i do not generally diss actors. I diss the directors who make them do stupid things. And he didnt do too many stupid things in Revenant.My complaint was that he didnt do much at all. that might have been an intelligent movie on the director’s part. i didnt like any of the acting in the film,but that didnt ruin it for me, because the characters were so thin in the first place. i watched the movie again lastnight and saw the cubs before the first attack, but that lazy eyed camera swooshed around in a way that i couldnt tell Leo was between the mother and the cubs s until the end of the shot. i saw no distress in the later attacks. also i finally caught the northern lights but it was just a smudge of green at the top of the screen. nothing lie the blakean designs in the skys that i used to see up north.

      Like

      1. i agree, he has never better. i dont know if i told you this before, but recently i saw hud and home from the hill as a double feature, and was amazed at how well they went together,with wade nearly a perfect embodiment of hud at an older age. later, i discovered both films were written by the same man and wife screenwriting team.

        Like

    1. i was very fond of rickman. it is very sad that he is no longer with us.rumor has it that bowie made the bus driver wait for him so they could share some laughs and sing a few songs together on their way to heaven.could

      Like

      1. I was surprised by his gorgeous baritone in Sweeney Todd. I loved the duet with he and Johnny Depp. Minus the gratuitous blood, and the tinny voice of HBC, a fine film adaptation to one of my favorite musicals.

        Like

  2. Thanks for the Oscars roundup, Bill. I like the look of ‘Son of Saul’, from the previews and clips I have seen. Also ‘Carol’, which reminded me of the films of Douglas Sirk. (Again from clips and previews)

    As for Alan Rickman, I preferred him in mannered dramas, like ‘Close My Eyes.’ (1991) He is a loss to both British theatre, and international cinema, and he enjoyed a lot of respect from both his peers and his audiences.

    Best wishes, Pete.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s