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On my recent flights, I got to watch several movies. See below for some reviews:

Logan

I LOVED this. I loved how fierce Laura was – yes, it was unusual to see a child being so violent but it was very cool to see a mini she-wolverine in action. I thought the story was interesting and the characters’ interactions were really entertaining. Love the chemistry between Logan and Laura, Logan and Charles, Charles and Laura. There was really funny dialogue, like laugh out loud funny. Watch it. Rating: A

Queen of Katwe

It’s a story of Phiona, a girl from Katwe, an impoverished town in Uganda, who learns to play chess and competes in various competitions. There were some great characters in this movie and it’s a pretty subdued drama – a pretty tame Disney story. Recommended for anyone who enjoys chess or movies about people beating the odds. Rating: B-

The Circle

Emma Watson and Tom Hanks star in this modern movie about The Circle, a successful company on the leading edge of social media / technology. Mae (Watson) joins an experiment to “go transparent” and broadcasts every moment of her waking life (bathroom breaks are the exception) with her followers, to great success that ends in a tragic way (no spoilers). Very interesting take on how things could be, or almost are today, really. I enjoyed it. Recommended for people who enjoy or appreciate innovation or the new age of social media. Rating: B+

The Dinner

Subdues drama about two brothers and their wives who find out about a crime their kids committed together over dinner. A solid cast and good writing kept me from switching it off. It was an OK story, and comic relief was provided by the restaurant’s antics (a really uppity place pretty full of itself) but I found it enjoyable.  It’s not for everyone though. Recommended for those who enjoy movies centered on dialogue and don’t need bells and whistles to be entertained. Rating: B-

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It’s that time of year! Once again, I went on a mission to watch all the nominated pictures so I feel pretty good about my picks. In summary, for the big categories: I felt that due to the lack of really AMAZING movies, the results will be skewed, primarily towards La La Land. It was good – different, good story, nice imagery/cinematography, nice music, likable actors – BUT – put it in another year against really great films and I don’t think it would do as well.

la-la-land-musical

That said, there were some standout performances this year. Casey Affleck in Manchester by the Sea gave a somewhat subdued performance and his character was so tightly wound throughout the movie that I physically felt it build up and snap at the end. Not many performances can do that. In my mind, the only other contender is Andrew Garfield for Hacksaw Ridge but that’s not the typical Academy fare for Best Actor. But again, if you pair either against Russel Crowe in A Beautiful Mind, Sean Penn in I Am Sam or Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything, they would lose.

I feel like Denzel keeps playing the same character over and over again. I’m over it. Best Supporting Actor will likely go to Mahershala Ali for Moonlight, due to lack of competition and to reward the film for something. It was very similar to Boyhood. Been there done that, but this time with 3 different actors.

For Best Actress, Emma Stone was good in La La Land but again, I think she’ll win mainly due to lack of competition.  Regardless, I’m a big fan and I’m happy that she was in the right place at the right time this year to win it. Best Supporting Actress is clearly Viola Davis for Fences – without question. Just give it to her already.

And animated short HAS to go to Piper – what’s not to like? Adorbs. Watch it here – just 4 minutes and you’ll be smiling at the end.

Below are all the nominees with my official picks in red:

Best Picture

  • Arrival
  • Fences
  • Hacksaw Ridge
  • Hell or High Water
  • Hidden Figures
  • La La Land
  • Lion
  • Manchester by the Sea
  • Moonlight

Directing

  • Denis Villeneuve, Arrival
  • Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge
  • Damien Chazelle, La La Land
  • Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea
  • Barry Jenkins, Moonlight

Actor in a Leading Role

  • Casey Affleck, Manchester by the Sea
  • Andrew Garfield, Hacksaw Ridge
  • Ryan Gosling, La La Land
  • Viggo Mortensen, Captain Fantastic
  • Denzel Washington, Fences

Actress in a Leading Role

  • Isabelle Huppert, Elle
  • Ruth Negga, Loving
  • Natalie Portman, Jackie
  • Emma Stone, La La Land
  • Meryl Streep, Florence Foster Jenkins

Actress in a Supporting Role

  • Viola Davis, Fences
  • Naomie Harris, Moonlight
  • Nicole Kidman, Lion
  • Octavia Spencer, Hidden Figures
  • Michelle Williams, Manchester by the Sea

Actor in a Supporting Role

  • Mahershala Ali, Moonlight
  • Jeff Bridges, Hell or High Water
  • Lucas Hedges, Manchester by the Sea
  • Dev Patel, Lion
  • Michael Shannon, Nocturnal Animals

Adapted Screenplay

  • Arrival, Eric Heisserer
  • Fences, August Wilson
  • Hidden Figures, Allison Schroeder and Theodore Melfi
  • Lion, Luke Davies
  • Moonlight, Barry Jenkins and Tarell Alvin McCraney

Original Screenplay

  • Hell or High Water, Taylor Sheridan
  • La La Land, Damien Chazelle
  • The Lobster, Yorgos Lanthimos and Efthimis Filippou
  • Manchester by the Sea, Kenneth Lonergan
  • 20th Century Women, Mike Mills

Animated Feature Film

  • Kubo and the Two Strings
  • Moana
  • My Life as a Zucchini
  • The Red Turtle
  • Zootopia

Foreign Language Film

  • Land of Mine (Denmark)
  • A Man Called Ove (Sweden)
  • The Salesman (Iran)
  • Tanna (Australia)
  • Toni Erdmann (Germany)

Documentary Feature

  • Fire at Sea
  • I Am Not Your Negro
  • Life, Animated
  • O.J.: Made in America
  • 13th

Cinematography

  • Arrival, Bradford Young
  • La La Land, Linus Sandgren
  • Lion, Greig Fraser
  • Moonlight, James Laxton
  • Silence, Rodrigo Prieto

Film Editing

  • Arrival, Joe Walker
  • Hacksaw Ridge, John Gilbert
  • Hell or High Water, Jake Roberts
  • La La Land, Tom Cross
  • Moonlight, Nat Sanders and Joi McMillon

Production Design

  • Arrival, Patrice Vermette and Paul Hotte
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Stuart Craig and Anna Pinnock
  • Hail, Caesar! , Jess Gonchor and Nancy Haigh
  • La La Land, Davis Wasco and Sandy Reynolds-Wasco
  • Passengers, Guy Hendrix Dyas and Gene Serdena

Costume Design

  • Allied, Joanna Johnston
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Colleen Atwood
  • Florence Foster Jenkins, Consolata Boyle
  • Jackie, Madeline Fontaine
  • La La Land, Mary Zophres

Makeup and Hairstyling

  • A Man Called Ove, Eva von Bahr and Love Larson
  • Star Trek Beyond, Joel Harlow and Richard Alonzo
  • Suicide Squad, Alessandro Bertolazzi, Giorgio Gregorini, and Christopher Nelson

Original Score

  • Jackie, Mica Levi
  • La La Land, Justin Hurwitz
  • Lion, Dustin O’Halloran and Hauschka
  • Moonlight, Nicholas Britell
  • Passengers, Thomas Newman

Original Song

  • “Audition (The Fools who Dream),” La La Land, music by Justin Hurwitz, lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
  • “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” Trolls, music and lyric by Justin Timberlake, Max Martin, and Karl Johan Schuster
  • “City of Stars,” La La Land, music by Justin Hurwitz, lyric by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
  • “The Empty Chair,” Jim: The James Foley Story, music and lyric by J. Ralph and Sting
  • “How Far I’ll Go,” Moana, music and lyric by Lin-Manuel Miranda

Sound Editing

  • Arrival, Sylvain Bellemare
  • Deepwater Horizon, Wylie Stateman and Renée Tondelli
  • Hacksaw Ridge, Robert Mackenzie and Andy Wright
  • La La Land, Ai-Ling Lee and Mildred Iatrou Morgan
  • Sully, Alan Robert Murray and Bub Asman

Sound Mixing

  • Arrival, Bernard Gariépy Strobl and Claude La Haye
  • Hacksaw Ridge, Kevin O’Connell, Andy Wright, Robert Mackenzie, and Peter Grace
  • La La Land, Andy Nelson, Ai-Ling Lee, and Steve A. Morrow
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, David Parker, Christopher Scarabosio, and Stuart Wilson
  • 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, Greg P. Russell, Gary Summers, Jeffrey J. Haboush, and Mac Ruth

Visual Effects

  • Deepwater Horizon, Craig Hammack, Jason Snell, Justin Billington, and Burt Dalton
  • Doctor Strange, Stephane Ceretti, Richard Bluff, Vincent Cirelli, and Paul Corbould
  • The Jungle Book, Robert Legato, Adam Valdez, Andrew R. Jones, and Dan Lemmon
  • Kubo and the Two Strings, Steve Emerson, Oliver Jones, Brian McLean, and Brad Schiff
  • Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, John Knoll, Mohen Leo, Hal Hickel, and Neil Corbould

Animated Short Film

  • Blind Vaysha
  • Borrowed Time
  • Pear Cider and Cigarettes
  • Pearl
  • Piper

Live Action Short Film

  • Ennemis Intérieurs
  • La Femme et le TGV
  • Silent Nights
  • Sing
  • Timecode

Documentary Short Subject

  • Extremis
  • 4.1 Miles
  • Joe’s Violin
  • Watani: My Homeland
  • The White Helmets

Good luck!

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It’s Oscar day! As in the past, I’ve tried my best to watch all the nominated films and performances (at least in the major categories) and I’ve listed my picks below in bold. There were some great films this year and some really memorable performances. The Revenant, The Big Short and Spotlight were my favorite films of those nominated. There were things done in Mad Max: Fury Road that should have been impossible – I think it’ll pick up several of the technical awards. The one category I’m not sure about is supporting actor – I picked Stallone for the nostalgia factor but both Tom Hardy and Mark Ruffalo gave great performances – it could go either way.

Good luck!

Oscars

BEST PICTURE

The Big Short

Bridge of Spies

Brooklyn

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Room

Spotlight

=============================

ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE

Bryan Cranston, Trumbo

Matt Damon, The Martian

Leonardo DiCaprio, The Revenant

Michael Fassbender, Steve Jobs

Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl

=============================

ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE

Cate Blanchett, Carol

Brie Larson, Room

Jennifer Lawrence, Joy

Charlotte Rampling, 45 Years

Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn

=============================

ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Christian Bale, The Big Short

Tom Hardy, The Revenant

Mark Ruffalo, Spotlight

Mark Rylance, Bridge of Spies

Sylvester Stallone, Creed

=============================

ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE

Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight

Rooney Mara, Carol

Rachel McAdams, Spotlight

Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl

Kate Winslet, Steve Jobs

=============================

ANIMATED FEATURE FILM

Anomalisa

Boy and the World

Inside Out

Shaun the Sheep Movie

When Marnie Was There

=============================

CINEMATOGRAPHY

Carol

The Hateful Eight

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Sicario

=============================

COSTUME DESIGN

Carol

Cinderella

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

=============================

DIRECTING

The Big Short

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Room

Spotlight

=============================

DOCUMENTARY (FEATURE)

Amy

Cartel Land

The Look of Silence

What Happened, Miss Simone?

Winter on Fire: Ukraine’s Fight for Freedom

=============================

DOCUMENTARY (SHORT SUBJECT)

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

=============================

FILM EDITING

The Big Short

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Revenant

Spotlight

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

=============================

FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

Embrace of the Serpent

Mustang

Son of Saul

Theeb

A War

=============================

MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLING

Mad Max: Fury Road

The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed out the Window and Disappeared

The Revenant

=============================

MUSIC (ORIGINAL SCORE)

Bridge of Spies

Carol

The Hateful Eight

Sicario

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

=============================

MUSIC (ORIGINAL SONG)

“Earned It,” Fifty Shades of Grey

“Manta Ray,” Racing Extinction

“Simple Song #3,” Youth

“Til It Happens To You,” The Hunting Ground

“Writing’s On The Wall,” Spectre

=============================

PRODUCTION DESIGN

Bridge of Spies

The Danish Girl

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

=============================

SHORT FILM (ANIMATED)

Bear Story

Prologue

Sanjay’s Super Team

We Can’t Live without Cosmos

World of Tomorrow

=============================

SHORT FILM (LIVE ACTION)

Ave Maria

Day One

Everything Will Be Okay (Alles Wird Gut)

Shok

Stutterer

=============================

SOUND EDITING

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Sicario

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

=============================

SOUND MIXING

Bridge of Spies

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

=============================

VISUAL EFFECTS

Ex Machina

Mad Max: Fury Road

The Martian

The Revenant

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

=============================

WRITING (ADAPTED SCREENPLAY)

The Big Short

Brooklyn

Carol

The Martian

Room

=============================

WRITING (ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY)

Bridge of Spies

Ex Machina

Inside Out

Spotlight

Straight Outta Compton

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Here are the results – I didn’t do very well this year. I correctly predicted 16 out of 24. For some, I went with my heart instead of my head and that’s never a good strategy (Animated feature, Visual Effects, Makeup). 🙂 So happy Eddie Redmayne won for Best Actor – so deserving. I was surprised Boyhood lost the Editing race but happy that Whiplash won it. I thought NPH did OK as the host – it’s a tough gig.

Some of my favorite moments from the show (yes, I DID watch the whole thing) were: J.K. Simmons’ speech to Call Your Mom, Eddie Redmayne’s unrestrained glee, Lady Gaga’s tribute to the Sound of Music, the performance of Glory (song from Selma) and the exchange between Idina Menzel and John Travolta.

Here’s the list containing my predictions (bold) and the winners:

Best Picture

  • “American Sniper”
  • “Birdman”   winner
  • “Boyhood”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Selma”
  • “The Theory of Everything”
  • “Whiplash”

Best Actor

  • Steve Carell, “Foxcatcher”
  • Bradley Cooper, “American Sniper”
  • Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Imitation Game”
  • Michael Keaton, “Birdman”
  • Eddie Redmayne, “The Theory of Everything”   winner

Best Actress

  • Marion Cotillard, “Two Days, One Night”
  • Felicity Jones, “The Theory of Everything”
  • Julianne Moore, “Still Alice”   winner
  • Rosamund Pike, “Gone Girl”
  • Reese Witherspoon, “Wild”

Best Supporting Actor

  • Robert Duvall, “The Judge”
  • Ethan Hawke, “Boyhood”
  • Edward Norton, “Birdman”
  • Mark Ruffalo, “Foxcatcher”
  • J.K. Simmons, “Whiplash”   winner

Best Supporting Actress

  • Patricia Arquette, “Boyhood”   winner
  • Laura Dern, “Wild”
  • Keira Knightley, “The Imitation Game”
  • Emma Stone, “Birdman”
  • Meryl Streep, “Into the Woods”

Animated Feature Film

  • “Big Hero 6”   winner
  • “The Boxtrolls”
  • “How to Train Your Dragon 2”
  • “Song of the Sea”
  • “The Tale of the Princess Kaguya”

Cinematography

  • “Birdman”   winner
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “Ida”
  • “Mr. Turner”
  • “Unbroken”

Costume Design

  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”   winner
  • “Inherent Vice”
  • “Into the Woods”
  • “Maleficent”
  • “Mr. Turner”

Directing

  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, “Birdman”   winner
  • Richard Linklater, “Boyhood”
  • Bennett Miller, “Foxcatcher”
  • Wes Anderson, “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • Morten Tyldum, “The Imitation Game”

Documentary Feature

  • “Citizenfour”   winner
  • “Finding Vivian Maier”
  • “Last Days in Vietnam”
  • “The Salt of the Earth”
  • “Virunga”

Documentary Short Subject

  • “Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1”   winner
  • “Joanna”
  • “Our Curse”
  • “The Reaper (La Parka)”
  • “White Earth”

Film Editing

  • “American Sniper”
  • “Boyhood”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Whiplash”   winner

Foreign Language Film

  • “Ida,” Poland   winner
  • “Leviathan,” Russia
  • “Tangerines,” Estonia
  • “Timbuktu,” Mauritania
  • “Wild Tales,” Argentina

Makeup and Hairstyling

  • “Foxcatcher”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”   winner
  • “Guardians of the Galaxy”

Original Score

  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”   winner
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Mr. Turner”
  • “The Theory of Everything”

Original Song

  • “Everything Is Awesome,” “The Lego Movie”
  • “Glory,” “Selma”   winner
  • “Grateful, “Beyond the Lights”
  • “I”m Not Gonna Miss You,” “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me”
  • “Lost Stars,” “Begin Again”

Production Design

  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”   winner
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Into the Woods”
  • “Mr. Turner”

Animated Short Film

  • “The Bigger Picture”
  • “The Dam Keeper”
  • “Feast”   winner
  • “Me and My Moulton”
  • “A Single Life”

Live Action Short Film

  • “Aya”
  • “Boogaloo and Graham”
  • “Butter Lamp”
  • “Parvaneh”
  • “The Phone Call”  winner

Sound Editing

  • “American Sniper”   winner
  • “Birdman”
  • “The Hobbitt: The Battle of the Five Armies”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Unbroken”

Sound Mixing

  • “American Sniper”
  • “Birdman”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Unbroken”
  • “Whiplash”   winner

Visual Effects

  • “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”
  • “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”
  • “Guardians of the Galaxy”
  • “Interstellar”  winner
  • “X-Men: Days of Future Past”

Adapted Screenplay

  • “American Sniper”
  • “The Imitation Game”  winner
  • “Inherent Vice”
  • “The Theory of Everything”
  • “Whiplash”

Original Screenplay

  • “Birdman”
  • “Boyhood”
  • “Foxcatcher”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”   winner
  • “Nightcrawler”

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oscars

It’s that time of year again! The time between the day the nominees are announced and the Oscar show airs is usually a mad race to watch as many as nominated films as possible. Since I do this every year, I often end up seeing films I may not have opted to watch otherwise. I also have a pretty good record on predicting who will win (I got 21 out of 24 last year). As of today, I have watched (or attempted to watch) all Best Picture nominees except Selma; the two I started watching but couldn’t get through were Birdman and The Grand Budapest Hotel. I appreciated Boyhood and the concept of the 12 year time period, but don’t see it winning Best Picture. I do see it winning for Best Director (keeping at it for that long and keeping the cast aligned with the vision) and Film Editing (imagine working with film spanning 12 years and getting it down to a couple of hours – that’s a feat).

Eddie Redmayne was fantastic in Theory of Everything. J.K. Simmons was fantastic in Whiplash. Although Train Your Dragon 2 is a sequel, it was a really good movie, so I’m taking a risk. I’ll admit to doing some research for the Short film, Documentary and Foreign film categories.

For Visual Effects I was torn between Interstellar and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – I finally went with Apes for all the CGI but wouldn’t be surprised if Interstellar won. Sound Editing – war movies usually win this one. Sound Mixing – if you’ve seen Whiplash, you’ll know why I chose it.

For Adapted screenplay, I was torn between The Theory of Everything and Imitation Game and chose the latter because the film was good enough to warrant a win somewhere. For Original screenplay, The Grand Budapest Hotel has had a lot of hype and it was pretty quirky and different.

There were some great performances this year and I have some personal favourites (Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything – Amazing). Below is the list of nominees with my predictions in bold:

Best Picture

  • “American Sniper”
  • “Birdman”
  • “Boyhood”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Selma”
  • “The Theory of Everything”
  • “Whiplash”

Best Actor

  • Steve Carell, “Foxcatcher”
  • Bradley Cooper, “American Sniper”
  • Benedict Cumberbatch, “The Imitation Game”
  • Michael Keaton, “Birdman”
  • Eddie Redmayne, “The Theory of Everything”

Best Actress

  • Marion Cotillard, “Two Days, One Night”
  • Felicity Jones, “The Theory of Everything”
  • Julianne Moore, “Still Alice”
  • Rosamund Pike, “Gone Girl”
  • Reese Witherspoon, “Wild”

Best Supporting Actor

  • Robert Duvall, “The Judge”
  • Ethan Hawke, “Boyhood”
  • Edward Norton, “Birdman”
  • Mark Ruffalo, “Foxcatcher”
  • J.K. Simmons, “Whiplash”

Best Supporting Actress

  • Patricia Arquette, “Boyhood”
  • Laura Dern, “Wild”
  • Keira Knightley, “The Imitation Game”
  • Emma Stone, “Birdman”
  • Meryl Streep, “Into the Woods”

Animated Feature Film

  • “Big Hero 6”
  • “The Boxtrolls”
  • “How to Train Your Dragon 2”
  • “Song of the Sea”
  • “The Tale of the Princess Kaguya”

Cinematography

  • “Birdman”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “Ida”
  • “Mr. Turner”
  • “Unbroken”

Costume Design

  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “Inherent Vice”
  • “Into the Woods”
  • “Maleficent”
  • “Mr. Turner”

Directing

  • Alejandro González Iñárritu, “Birdman”
  • Richard Linklater, “Boyhood”
  • Bennett Miller, “Foxcatcher”
  • Wes Anderson, “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • Morten Tyldum, “The Imitation Game”

Documentary Feature

  • “Citizenfour”
  • “Finding Vivian Maier”
  • “Last Days in Vietnam”
  • “The Salt of the Earth”
  • “Virunga”

Documentary Short Subject

  • “Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1”
  • “Joanna”
  • “Our Curse”
  • “The Reaper (La Parka)”
  • “White Earth”

Film Editing

  • “American Sniper”
  • “Boyhood”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Whiplash”

Foreign Language Film

  • “Ida,” Poland
  • “Leviathan,” Russia
  • “Tangerines,” Estonia
  • “Timbuktu,” Mauritania
  • “Wild Tales,” Argentina

Makeup and Hairstyling

  • “Foxcatcher”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “Guardians of the Galaxy”

Original Score

  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Mr. Turner”
  • “The Theory of Everything”

Original Song

  • “Everything Is Awesome,” “The Lego Movie”
  • “Glory,” “Selma”
  • “Grateful, “Beyond the Lights”
  • “I”m Not Gonna Miss You,” “Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me”
  • “Lost Stars,” “Begin Again”

Production Design

  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Into the Woods”
  • “Mr. Turner”

Animated Short Film

  • “The Bigger Picture”
  • “The Dam Keeper”
  • “Feast”
  • “Me and My Moulton”
  • “A Single Life”

Live Action Short Film

  • “Aya”
  • “Boogaloo and Graham”
  • “Butter Lamp”
  • “Parvaneh”
  • “The Phone Call”

Sound Editing

  • “American Sniper”
  • “Birdman”
  • “The Hobbitt: The Battle of the Five Armies”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Unbroken”

Sound Mixing

  • “American Sniper”
  • “Birdman”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “Unbroken”
  • “Whiplash”

Visual Effects

  • “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”
  • “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”
  • “Guardians of the Galaxy”
  • “Interstellar”
  • “X-Men: Days of Future Past”

Adapted Screenplay

  • “American Sniper”
  • “The Imitation Game”
  • “Inherent Vice”
  • “The Theory of Everything”
  • “Whiplash”

Original Screenplay

  • “Birdman”
  • “Boyhood”
  • “Foxcatcher”
  • “The Grand Budapest Hotel”
  • “Nightcrawler”

The Oscars air next Sunday February 22nd at 7pm ET.

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(Updated Mar 3rd: I got 21 out of 24 right (red ones below are wrong)! Pretty good! :))

After much movie-watching and reading up on what the critics are saying (they even have Vegas odds on these categories…), here are my picks for tonight’s show:

  • Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave
  • Best Actress: Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)
  • Best Actor: Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club)
  • Best Documentary Short: The Lady in No. 6: Music Saved my Life
  • Best Director: Afonso Cuaron (Gravity)
  • Best Supporting Actor: Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)
  • Best Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave)
  • Best Animated Feature Film: Frozen
  • Best Animated Short Film: Get a Horse!
  • Best Foreign Film: Italy – “The Great Beauty”
  • Best Original Screenplay: American Hustle
  • Best Adapted Screenplay: 12 Years a Slave
  • Best Makeup: Dallas Buyers Club
  • Best Short Film (Live Action): The Voorman Problem
  • Best costume Design: The Great Gatsby
  • Best Original Score: Gravity
  • Best Documentary: 20 Feet From Stardom
  • Best Film Editing: Gravity
  • Best Visual Effects: Gravity
  • Best Cinematography: Gravity
  • Best Sound Editing: Gravity
  • Best Sound Mixing: Gravity
  • Best Production Design: The Great Gatsby
  • Best Original Song: Let It Go (from “Frozen”)

I have a soft spot for American Hustle and the cast but after watching Dallas Buyers Club, I think the votes for the men will go that way. For the women – Amy Adams and Jennifer Lawrence did a remarkable job in American Hustle but Cate was amazing in Blue Jasmine and supporting actress usually goes to a newcomer so I’ve chosen Lupita there.

I was able to watch several of the nominees in the various categories: Dallas Buyers Club, American Hustle, Blue Jasmine, Wolf of Wall Street, Gravity, Captain Phillips, The Great Gatsby, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Iron Man 3, Star trek Into Darkness  and Frozen.  I still want to see 12 Years a Slave and August: Osage County.

We’ll see what happens. 🙂 Good luck in your Oscar pool!

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The Oscars are my favourite Awards Show (even as I sit here typing this with the Grammy’s on). Every year, it’s a race to try to see all the nominated movies before the Oscar broadcast and this year is no different. The nominees for Best Picture are:

  • American Hustle
  • Captain Phillips
  • Dallas Buyers Club
  • Gravity
  • Her
  • Nebraska
  • Philomena
  • 12 Years a Slave
  • The Wolf of Wall Street

So far, I’ve seen American Hustle, Captain Phillips and the Wolf of Wall Street. I’ll do my best to see Gravity, Dallas Buyers Club, Her and 12 Years a Slave. Not sure about the rest.

I’m also interested in seeing some of the movies that have actors/actresses nominated but not Best Picture, specifically Blue Jasmine (Cate Blanchett) and August: Osage County (Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts).

I still haven’t made my picks yet but have a soft spot for American Hustle. The hair alone was legendary. lol 🙂

I’ll post my picks once I’ve had a chance to see more of the movies with nominations.

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