Thursday, January 15, 2015

The 2015 Oscars Will Host The Most Surprising Snubs Of The Season

Alright, this one's a shocker. Here's the list of 2015 Oscar nominees:

Best Picture:

American Sniper

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)


The Grand Budapest Hotel

The Imitation Game


The Theory of Everything


My Pick: Birdman deserves it... if only to show that a film with that much integrity and ingenuity can win. This year's been odd, and these nominations may be odder, so I think we could use a film like Birdman winning just for sanity's sake.

Actor in a Leading Role:

Steve Carell - Foxcatcher

Bradley Cooper - American Sniper

Benedict Cumberbatch - The Imitation Game

Michael Keaton - Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Eddie Redmayne - The Theory of Everything

My Pick: Jake Gyllen... wait... he wasn't even nominated?? Ugh. Okay, I guess my second choice is Michael Keaton. Yay, Birdman gets another one (inflection not consistently serious). Did you also notice how Selma's David Oyelowo didn't get recognized here either. This category is amongst the most disappointing evidence of the Academy's poor decision making this year.

Actress in a Leading Role:

Marion Cotillard - Two Days, One Night

Felicity Jones - The Theory of Everything

Julianne Moore - Still Alice

Rosamund Pike - Gone Girl

Reese Witherspoon - Wild

My Pick: Julianne Moore... though I'd still be down for a Reese Witherspoon win.

Actor in a Supporting Role:

Robert Duvall - The Judge

Ethan Hawke - Boyhood

Edward Norton - Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Mark Ruffalo - Foxcatcher

J.K. Simmons - Whiplash

My Pick: J.K. Simmons! At least this one hasn't changed... though the addition of any performance from The Judge is questionable at best on the Academy's part.

Actress in a Supporting Role:

Patricia Arquette - Boyhood

Laura Dern - Wild

Keira Knightley - The Imitation Game

Emma Stone - Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

Meryl Streep - Into the Woods

My Pick: Patricia Arquette... because her performance still blows my mind!

Animated Feature Film:

Big Hero 6

The Boxtrolls

How to Train Your Dragon 2

Song of the Sea

The Tale of the Princess Kaguya

My Pick: The LEG... wait... this one too? Dammit Academy! Stop ruining my day... Well, How to Train Your Dragon 2... but with a very very heavy asterisk. The best movie doesn't even make the list.


Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) - Emmanuel Lubezki

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Robert Yeoman

Ida - Lukasz Zal and Ryszard Lenczewski

Mr. Turner - Dick Pope

Unbroken - Roger Deakins

My Pick: Birdman... Though once again I've gotta say, Mr. Turner could nab this one.

Costume Design:

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Milena Canonero

Inherent Vice - Mike Bridges

Into the Woods - Colleen Atwood

Maleficent - Anna B. Sheppard and Jane Clive

Mr. Turner - Jacqueline Durran

My Pick: The Grand Budapest Hotel.


Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) - Alejandro G. Iñárritu

Boyhood - Richard Linklater

Foxcatcher - Bennett Miller

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Wes Anderson

The Imitation Game - Morten Tyldum

My Pick: Alejandro G. Iñárritu... but isn't it funny how a film that didn't even reach the Best Picture category managed to get its director in here while several other flicks considered to be of that quality didn't... I'm okay with a separation between the two awards because there is a difference, but at some point the two do become one and that's when you pull the one from the other.

Documentary Feature:


Finding Vivian Maier

Last Days in Vietnam

The Salt of the Earth


My Pick: Virunga. It's one of the best films of the year.

Film Editing:

American Sniper - Joel Cox and Gary D. Roach

Boyhood - Sandra Adair

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Barney Pilling

The Imitation Game - William Goldenberg

Whiplash - Tom Cross

My Pick: Whiplash. I know I've got at least one friend who'd disagree, but Whiplash captured so much emotion and gave just the right beats at just the right moments... through cutting and coloring.

Foreign Language Film:





Wild Tales

My Pick: Ida. Though I can't speak for any of the other candidates. A little surprised some of the other foreign flicks I saw this year didn't make it.

Makeup and Hairstyling:

Foxcatcher - Bill Corso and Dennis Liddiard

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Frances Hannon and Mark Coulier

Guardians of the Galaxy - Elizabeth Yianni-Georgiou and David White

My Pick: Foxcatcher... I expect this to be the only award Foxcatcher gets, but damn does it deserve it.

Music (Original Score):

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Alexandre Desplat

The Imitation Game - Alexandre Desplat

Interstellar - Hans Zimmer

Mr. Turner - Gary Yershon

The Theory of Everything - Jóhann Jóhannsson

My Pick: Since my pick was never gonna make this list I can give the Academy a little bit of a break here. At least my second choice got in... Mr. Turner.

Music (Original Song):

"Everything Is Awesome" from The LEGO Movie - Music and Lyric by Shawn Patterson

"Glory" from Selma - Music and Lyric by John Stephens and Lonnie Lynn

"Grateful" from Beyond the Lights - Music and Lyric by Diane Warren

"I'm Not Gonna Miss You" from Glenn Campbell... I'll Be Me - Music and Lyric by Glen Campbell and Julian Raymond

"Lost Stars" from Begin Again - Music and Lyric by Gregg Alexander and Danielle Brisebois

My Pick: Oh, you guys did know The LEGO Movie existed??? Everything Is Awesome!!

Production Design:

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Adam Stockhausen (Production Design); Anna Pinnock (Set Decoration)

The Imitation Game - Maria Djurkovic (Production Design); Tatiana MacDonald (Set Decoration)

Interstellar - Nathan Crowley (Production Design); Gary Fettis (Set Decoration)

Into the Woods - Dennis Gassner (Production Design); Anna Pinnock (Set Decoration)

Mr. Turner - Suzie Davies (Production Design); Charlotte Watts (Set Decoration)

My Pick: Mr. Turner... though I would really like to see The Grand Budapest Hotel win as well.

Sound Editing:

American Sniper -  Alan Robert Murray and Bob Asman

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) - Martin Hernández and Aaron Glascock

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies - Brent Burge and Jason Canovas

Interstellar - Richard King

Unbroken - Becky Sullivan and Andrew DeCristofaro

My Pick: Birdman... That's what I say anyway.

Sound Mixing:

American Sniper - John Reitz, Gregg Rudloff and Walt Martin

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) - Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño and Thomas Varga

Interstellar - Gary A. Rizzo, Gregg Landaker and Mark Weingarten

Unbroken - Jon Taylor, Frank A. Montaño and David Lee

Whiplash - Craig Mann, Ben Wilkins and Thomas Curley

My Pick: Whiplash!! Glad it got nominated... and I don't know how anyone in their right mind could nominate Interstellar here... that flick was utterly impossible on the ears.

Visual Effects:

Captain America: The Winter Soldier - Dan DeLeeuw, Russell Earl, Bryan Grill and Dan Sudick

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes - Joe Letteri, Dan Lemmon, Daniel Barrett and Erik Winquist

Guardians of the Galaxy - Stephane Ceretti, Nicolas Aithadi, Jonathan Fawkner and Paul Corbould

Interstellar - Paul Franklin, Andrew Lockley, Ian Hunter and Scott Fisher

X-Men: Days of Future Past - Richard Stammers, Lou Pecora, Tim Crosbie and Cameron Waldbauer

My Pick: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes!! Because it deserves it. Serious props to these guys for bringing those apes to life in such an amazing way.

Writing (Adapted Screenplay):

American Sniper - Written by Jason Hall

The Imitation Game - Written by Graham Moore

Inherent Vice - Written for the screen by Paul Thomas Anderson

The Theory of Everything - Screenplay by Anthony McCarten

Whiplash - Written by Damien Chazelle

My Pick: Inherent Vice. Paul Thomas Anderson's script is a perfect adaptation of that book... and it actually manages to enlighten some of the more confusing passages believe it or not.

Writing (Original Screenplay):

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) - Written by Alejandro G. Iñárritu, Nicolás Giacobone, Alexander Dinelaris, Jr. & Armando Bo

Boyhood - Written by Richard Linklater

Foxcatcher - Written by E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman

The Grand Budapest Hotel - Screenplay by Wes Anderson; Story by Wes Anderson & Hugo Guinness

Nightcrawler - Written by Dan Gilroy

My Pick: Birdman. Once again. Here's the thing, I would nominate Grand Budapest, but it's adapted and these awards shows keep moving it into original... which is just wrong. Not to mention Whiplash is in the wrong category. These two should be swapped.

Damnit! Every year the Academy finds a new way to piss me off. I'd yell more about Ava DuVernay not getting nominated, but I sincerely don't think she was the best director this year. Regardless, I don't understand how Selma gets nominated for Best Feature but doesn't get a director nod while Foxcatcher rightly misses out on the Best Feature category but somehow Bennett Miller gets in for directing. But as I said, that's the least of my gripes... The Lego Movie and Jake Gyllenhaal both got shanked and those were the two categories I was most looking forward to. I just hope they get it right with the stuff they did choose to nominate come award day.

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