Thursday, January 16, 2014

Oscar Nominations 2013!

By now I'm sure you've all seen the actual nominations announced this morning (I would love to post right after they're announced, but, you know, day job...). But I couldn't let them pass without a little commentary about them (except that Best Documentry: Short Subject category. I have no opinion on that. I can't even pronounce most of the titles). But now I've had time to digest and think them all over, so here we go...

"Sorry, Renner, your hair is just not crazy enough to score an acting nomination..."
Best Picture
American Hustle
Captain Phillips
Dallas Buyers Club
12 Years a Slave
The Wolf of Wall Street

So, can we just assume that there will always be 9 nominees in this category from now on? This anywhere from 5-10 nominees is too much. How am I supposed to remember all of these anyway. Without googling, can anyone name all of last year's 9 Best Picture nominees? Anyway, I was only right with 7 out of my 9 predictions with Lee Daniels' The Butler and Saving Mr. Banks (which the Academy really did not go for in a big way, as both films, combined, only scored 1 nomination) instead of eventual nominees Captain Phillips (which somehow still scored despite no love for it's director or star) and Philomena (man, people love Judi Dench. I liked the film, but I would hardly go so far as to name it best picture). I added Dallas Buyers Club at the last minute to my predictions because people have some unexpected love for that film (if anyone can explain why, I'd be grateful). Obviously I want Her to win here, but it has no chance. So now all I can hope is that 12 Years a Slave takes it over American Hustles' meandering, celebrity dress-up. 

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

Guys, I'm bummed that Spike Jonze didn't make the cut here. I guess I should just be thankful that it was nominated for Picture. But, seriously, I hated every minute of Alexander Payne's condescending Nebraska. I grew up in the state and I know Payne is from there–saying this film is his love letter to Nebraska–but if that's the case he must be one of those boyfriend's that likes to belittle you and make fun of everything about you. All I saw was contempt for small-town America and a patronizing tone. I'd like a McQueen, but I'm fine with a Cuarón.

"Cheers to my fellow nominees: Redford, Hanks, Joaquin Phoenix, Oscar Isaac. Wait..."
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

Whoa. I mean, Christian Bale, huh? I know there where rumblings after his BAFTA nomination, but I never thought it would erupt into a nom here especially over near-lock Tom Hanks. And now American Hustle matches Silver Linings Playbook with a nominee in all 4 of the acting categories. Remember when it looked like Hanks might be a double nominee this year (like everyone else, I too think the scene in Phillips after his rescue, when he breaks down, is one of the best things Hanks has ever done, but then I think about how awful he is in that first scene in the car with all that exposition, and that accent, so I'm not torn up about this)? Or back in the Fall when people were predicting a Robert Redford win? Well, that's how it goes. Obviously I had Hanks over Bale in this category, but I could sense that Leo was getting in. And after that Golden Globe win, it was a done deal. This is actually one of the few races that can't be called. I can see any of the four (not Bale–he's won before and the nomination was the reward) taking this on Oscar night. 

"You mean to tell me people weren't predicting a nomination for me? Well, the odds are against ya, babe."
Best Actress
Amy Adams American Hustle
Cate Blanchett Blue Jasmine
Sandra Bullock Gravity
Judi Dench Philomena
Meryl Streep August: Osage County

I think we've all learned a very important lesson today: Never EVER bet against Meryl fucking Streep at the Oscars. The greatest Actress That Ever Lived now has a record 18 acting nominations. But, it's not even that impressive because she broke her own record. Runners-up Kate Hepburn and Jack Nicholson only have 12 each. One is dead and the other is retired, so I think it's safe to say that Meryl will be holding that record for a very long time. My final prediction was Amy Adams in (now her 5th nom and first in this category) and Meryl out. She sure showed me. But it was at the expense of Emma Thompson, who with a win in both acting and writing, doesn't need another nomination, but damn if she wasn't great in Saving Mr. Banks. I'm sure she's off throwing shoes aside and tossing back martinis anyway. It'll be Oscar night's lose. Anyway, this category of all previous nominees are just placeholder's for Cate Blanchett's inevitable victory. God, she's good.

I actually don't have a quip. I'd just like to point out that Jared Leto is 42. 22-year-olds don't have skin that nice.
Best Supporting Actor
   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

We now live in a world where Jonah Hill is a two-time Academy Award Nominee. Just let that sink in. He has more nominations than Robert Redford, Edward G. Robinson, Donald Sutherland, Peter Lorre, and John Barrymore combined. He was the one nomination I didn't predict here, opting for James Gandolfini instead. But, I'm not entirely surprised by Hill's nom as it's a pretty showy role. And I'm just glad Daniel Bruhl missed out for Rush for the purely selfish reason that now I don't have to see that movie (all Picture and Acting nominees seen!). I want Fassy to win (just glad he finally got a nomination), but know Leto will win. Ugh, this is always my least favorite category.

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

Sally Hawkins!!! You get a nomination (can you believe it)! JLaw and Julia–you get nominations! Oprah! Um, sorry, we're all out...I might be in the minority, but if we can't have a Scarlett Johansson nom (it never was really gonna happen anyway) I'd rather have an Oprah over a June Squibb. Look, she's old and foul-mouthed! Isn't that hilarious?!? Jennifer lawrence is now the youngest actor to score three nominations–but she better not win back-to-back Oscars. This award is for Lupita (or as my phone's autocorrect likes to say: Lipitor). 

    Best Adapted Screenplay
Before Midnight Richard Linklater, Julie Delpy & Ethan Hawke
Captain Phillips Billy Ray
Philomena Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope
12 Years a Slave John Ridley
The Wolf of Wall Street Terence Winter

Best Original Screenplay
American Hustle Eric Warren Singer and David O Russell
Blue Jasmine Woody Allen
Dallas Buyers Club Craig Borten & Melisa Wallack
Her Spike Jonze
Nebraska Bob Nelson

Best Animated Feature Film
The Croods
Despicable Me 2
Ernest & Celestine
The Wind Rises

Disney has yet to win in this category and will most likely score with its huge hit (and one of my favorites of the year–I saw it twice in the theatre in 3D!) But I didn't even like the first Despicable Me (which couldn't get a nom here when it was released) so I find it hard to believe the sequel is an improvement.  

Best Cinematography
The Grandmaster Philippe Le Sourd
Gravity Emmanuel Lubezki
Inside Llewyn Davis Bruno Delbonnel
Nebraska Phedon Papamichael
Prisoners Roger A. Deakins

Where the hell is 12 Years a Slave here? Without this nom, it's 9 nominations trailed behind American Hustle and Gravity with their 10 noms. 

Best Costume Design
American Hustle Michael Wilkinson
The Grandmaster William Chang Suk Ping
The Great Gatsby Catherine Martin
The Invisible Woman Michael O'Connor
12 Years a Slave Patricia Norris

This is the only nomination I'm okay with American Hustle receiving cause those 70's duds are pretty great. I'm guessing since it has so many nominations that it'll win here, but I also wouldn't mind a CM win...
Best Production Design
American Hustle
The Great Gatsby
12 Years a Slave

Best Film Editing
American Hustle Jay Cassidy, Crispin Struthers and Alan Baumgarten
Captain Phillips Christopher Rouse
Dallas Buyers Club John Mac McMurphy and Martin Pensa
Gravity Alfonso Cuarón and Mark Sanger
12 Years a Slave Joe Walker

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

Best Documentary Feature
The Act of Killing
Cutie and the Boxer
Dirty Wars
The Square
20 Feet from Stardom

True, I haven't seen any of these films, but I still find it hard to believe that they can top Sarah Polley's genre-bending Stories We Tell. They're all available to watch online, so I'll report back later.

Best Documentary Short Subject
Facing Fear
Karma Has No Walls
The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life
Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall

Best Foreign Language Film
The Broken Circle Breakdown
The Great Beauty
The Hunt
The Missing Picture

Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Dallas Buyers Club Adruitha Lee and Robin Mathews
Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa Stephen Prouty
The Lone Ranger Joel Harlow and Gloria Pasqua-Casny

Look, I'm not saying that American Hustle needs more nominations, but the costumes and wack-a-do hair was one of the things I actually liked about the movie. I mean, it spends the first 10 minutes of the film with Christian Bale constructing his elaborate combover. And it is a work of art. I'm not really sure what makeup is involved in Dallas Buyers Club–Jared Leto's lack of eyebrows? 

Best Original Score
The Book Thief John Williams
Gravity Steven Price
Her William Butler and Owen Pallett
Philomena Alexandre Desplat
Saving Mr. Banks Thomas Newman

This is Saving Mr. Banks' sole nomination (not even one for Production Design?!) And John Williams breaks his own record with his 49th(!) nomination.

Best Original Song
"Alone Yet Not Alone" from Alone Yet Not Alone Music: Bruce Broughton; Lyrics: Dennis Spiegel
"Happy" from Despicable Me 2 Music and Lyrics: Pharrell Willimas
"Let It Go" from Frozen Music and Lyrics: Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
"The Moon Song" from Her Music: Karen O; Lyrics: Karen O and Spike Jonze
"Ordinary Love" from Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom Music and Lyrics: U2

Who decided that this was the category to lead with? Especially after the first nomination of the morning was for a song in a film that no one has ever heard of. And it turns out, it's from a Christian production company. But more importantly: EGOT alert! If Robert Lopez wins here (which hopefully he does over U2 doing the same thing they've been doing for 20 years) he'll add an Oscar to his tally and be the youngest person to score the EGOT.

Best Sound Editing
All Is Lost Steve Boeddeker and Richard Hymns
Captain Phillips Oliver Tarney
Gravity Glenn Freemantle
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Brent Burge
Lone Survivor Wylie Stateman

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

Short Film: Animated
Get a Horse!
Mr. Hublot
Room on the Broom

Short Film: Live Action
Aquel No Era Yo (That Wasn't Me)
Avant Que De Tout Perde (Just Before Losing Everything)
Pitaako Mun Kaikki Hoitaa? (Do I Have to Take Care of Everything?)
The Voorman Problem

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