Oscar!Watch 2014: My predictions

03 Mar

I’m going to keep this short and sweet, because I have a couple of hours in which I can make my lunches for the rest of the week and start getting caught up on Bates Motel before season 2 starts tomorrow night (I’M AWARE I HAVE A PROBLEM WITH CONSUMING MEDIA).  Also, people are probably sick of Oscar nomination posts, so – short story stays short.

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

This and Adapted Screenplay are some of the hardest categories to guess, especially in a year with such quality.  I feel that screenplays should be read in order to be judged, but as a consumer you can only see the interpretation of those words on-screen.

Now remember, I have seen neither Her nor Nebraska.  If I were to judge simply on the three I have seen, my gut instinct is to give it to Dallas Buyers Club because the movie has great characters and a message about AIDS, which Hollywood has championed since AIDS was a terror in the United States (I’m not saying anything about how it’s still a terror in Africa but a lot of Americans choose to ignore that plight; look at me not saying anything).  I think Blue Jasmine also has a fantastic character in Jasmine, but I think the Academy will reward Cate Blanchett for her acting rather than Woody Allen for his writing (and look at me not saying a word about Woody Allen!  I’m all sorts of not saying things right now!).

But I think American Hustle will walk away with the award, because it’s going to get shut out of its other nominations.

Best Adapted Screenplay
Nominees: Captain Phillips; Philomena; Before Midnight; 12 Years a Slave; The Wolf of Wall Street.

While I think Before Midnight was an amazing film (I am definitely adding Before Sunrise and Before Sunset to my List) and wish it would win, I think 12 Years a Slave is going to win this one.

Best Director
Nominees: David O. Russell, American Hustle; Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity; Alexander Payne, Nebraska; Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave; Martin Scorsese, The Wolf of Wall Street.

This is a hard category to guess.  I mean, aside from throwing out Nebraska and The Wolf of Wall Street.  They’re great movies, but 12 Years a Slave has a great reputation coming in tonight.  They may give it to David O. Russell, but that’s also a long-shot; he may be enjoying a wealth of love right now, but there are still a lot of people who remember how difficult he was when he directed Three Kings, and no one dares mention I Heart Huckabees, however good it is.

And then there’s Alfonso Cuaron.  He could take it for Gravity (and has already won the DGA, the Golden Globe, and the BAFTA for it).  And the movie is stunning, and a testament to direction in a highly-technical medium.  The Academy could reward the movie here (and in the technical fields).

I could go both ways: I think 12 Years a Slave is a masterful work in directing not only characters, but characters in a space and time.  The long takes that Steve McQueen employs certainly contributed to the tension and emotional resonance of the film.  But Cuaron does the same in Gravity.  (Didn’t they split the DGA?  Am I making crap up?)  (It tied with 12 Years a Slave for the Producer’s Guild Award; my mistake.)

So here’s what I’m going to do: I’m going to give a slight edge to Cuaron and Gravity, but if Steve McQueen wins, that will also be awesome.  Because if either of them win, it will be a first: either the first Latin American Best Director, or the first African-American Best Director.

So basically, don’t let Marty Scorsese win again, okay?

Best Supporting Actress
Nominees: Sally Hawkins, Blue Jasmine; Jennifer Lawrence, American Hustle; Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave; Julia Roberts, August: Osage County; June Squibb, Nebraska.

Lupita Nyong’o, y’all.  Not even kidding.  If Jennifer Lawrence wins it again, it’s because we’re too enamored of her to recognize an amazing performance.  If anyone but Lupita wins this, it’s a travesty of Marisa Tomei in My Cousin Vinny proportions.

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

I am going to give a very strong recommendation to Jared Leto, who was amazing (and, most importantly, unrecognizable) in Dallas Buyers Club.  However, if Michael Fassbender wins, I won’t be mad.  If Jonah Hill wins, I’ll be highly amused, but also not mad (he was surprisingly not Jonah Hill in the movie, so I’ll be okay if he wins).

If they give it to Bradley Cooper, however, they’re morons.

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

I really really really want Amy Adams to win (she was the best part of that movie, and I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: if there were an Award for Best Performance by an Inanimate Object, her double-sided tape would win hands-down) – she’s been nominated six times and has yet to win.  She’s turning into the female version of Peter O’Toole, and y’all know how I feel about that man.  (OH GOD THE DEATH REEL IS TONIGHT I WON’T BE ABLE TO HANDLE IT GUYS)

But it’s probably going to go to Cate Blanchett, because she did an amazing turn as a modern-day Blanche DuBois.

(PS – everyone go see A Streetcar Named Desire if you have a chance.  And I’m not talking about O Streetcar, either.)

Best Actor
Nominees: Christian Bale, American Hustle; Bruce Dern, Nebraska; Leonardo DiCaprio, The Wolf of Wall Street; Chiwetel Ejiofer, 12 Years a Slave; Matthew McConaughey, Dallas Buyers Club

This is probably one of the two hardest categories for me to judge.  Because if it were up to me, I’d want to give it to Leonardo DiCaprio because he’s never won, but I also want to give it to Chiwetel Ejiofer because he was amazing, but I also want to give it to Matthew McConaughey because he was also amazing, and also, I want him to say “all right, all right, all right” when he wins.

So really?  I have no idea who’s going to win tonight.  No clue.  It could be either of those three men and I’ll be happy.

It’s a first, but I’m not going to predict.  Well, that’s not true; I predict the winner will not be Christian Bale, and it won’t be Bruce Dern, either.  There.  How’s that?

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

I’m going to cross off Her, Nebraska, Philomena, Captain Phillips, and The Wolf of Wall Street.  That brings the field down to the following four: American Hustle; Dallas Buyers Club; Gravity; and 12 Years a Slave.

Dallas Buyers Club will be rewarded on its performances, not as an overall picture (it’s missing the crucial Best Director nomination [although recent years have split the winners {see Ang Lee winning for The Life of Pi last year but Argo winning Best Picture, although that’s because the Academy was a circus of douches and didn’t nominate Ben Affleck for Best Director}]).

That leaves Gravity, American Hustle, and 12 Years a Slave.  And again, I don’t know!  I think it depends on how the other awards shake out.

For instance, they could give Best Directing and Best Picture to 12 Years a Slave, and I’d be okay with that.  Gravity would leave with a bunch of technical awards, and American Hustle would win Best Original Screenplay, and all would be fine.

But they could give Best Directing to Alfonso Cuaron, which means that then they’d give Best Picture to 12 Years a Slave because duh.

But they could give Best Directing to Steve McQueen and then give Best Picture to American Hustle, because it has the word American in the title.

I think I’m just going to go with 12 Years a Slave for Best Picture because I really don’t know.  It seems the most logical choice.

So to make a long story short (too late!), here’s my official list:

  • Best Original Screenplay: American Hustle
  • Best Adapted Screenplay: 12 Years a Slave
  • Best Director: Alfonso Cuaron, Gravity [or Steve McQueen, 12 Years a Slave]
  • Best Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong’o, 12 Years a Slave
  • Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto, Dallas Buyers Club
  • Best Actress: Cate Blanchett, Blue Jasmine
  • Best Actor: Fuck if I know.  Someone male.
  • Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave

Please remember that my predictions should not be the basis for any last-minute Oscar Pools, and if I sweep, I get a portion of the profits.  Please send all checks to Alaina c/o Movies Alaina’s Never Seen.  Thank you.

Happy Oscar Day!  And may the odds be ever in your favor.


Posted by on March 3, 2014 in Oscar!Watch!


2 responses to “Oscar!Watch 2014: My predictions

  1. Emily

    March 3, 2014 at 1:24 am

    Marisa Tomei is a national treasure! Have you even seen my Cousin Vinny?!

    • Alaina

      March 3, 2014 at 5:16 am

      Yes, I’ve seen My Cousin Vinny. Most of it. And I like Marisa Tomei. I was merely referring to the upset her win caused; I (hope I wasn’t) insinuating that she didn’t deserve winning.


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