Sunday, February 24, 2013

Oscar After-thoughts

Well, it could have been worse, but Lincoln was shafted tonight! No win for Best Director? For Ang Lee? What?! Over Steven Speilberg?!!!!!! Oh well, Life Of Pi wasn't badly directed by any means, but still. But that isn't the worst part for me: It just reinforced my opinion that Lincoln should have been honored tonight and definitely should have won Best Adapted Screenplay. It will go down in history as a big robbery for sure.

Anyway, though I was happy for Hathaway and Daniel Day Lewis. I knew Waltz was going to win! I was proud of that prediction! And I'm sure all you Waltz fans are happy too! I had a nagging feeling Lawrence was going to win all day, especially when Silver Linings lost Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor. Riva is still my choice, but Jennifer Lawrence is a very worthy winner. I was surprised that Les Miserables won 3 awards and I was happy that Zero Dark won Best Sound Mixing in a tie with Skyfall and Lincoln won Best Art Direction.

Anyway, what were your thoughts? Who were your worst winners? Who were your best winners?

Final Oscar Predictions And My Preferences

Well, the day is here!!! I always do them last, although I didn't get around to publishing my predictions last year (They would have been: The Artist, Michael Hazanvicious, Jean Dujardin, Viola Davis, Christopher Plummer,Octavia Spencer, The Descendants, Midnight In Paris), but here are mine for this year!!

Best Picture: Who Will Win: Argo will win. It won't be a deserved win, but given it's won everything in sight, I'm doubting it will lose. If it does, expect Lincoln or Silver Linings Playbook to triumph given Lincoln's overall nomination tally and Silver Linings fierce Miramax campaign.

Who Should Win: Lincoln hands down. It's an amazingly epic and rich film that is a masterpiece in every way. Please Academy give it to this film!

Best Director: Who Will Win: Steven Speilberg most likely will win, but upsets from Lee, Haneke, or even David O'Russel are possible. But don't bet on it.

Who Should Win: My vote would have easily have gone to Kathyrn Bigelow for Zero Dark Thirty, but I'll happily give my vote to Speilberg. He created such an involving and moving film and I'll be happy if he wins his third Oscar.

Best Actor: Who Will Win: D.D.L is pretty much a lock here and a win for him is extremely deserving.

Who Should Win: D.D.L. His performance is so brilliantly detailed and filled with so many emotions. One of the best performances of the year.

Best Actress: Who Will Win: Most are predicting Lawrence here and she is certainly the frontrunner, but I'm still sticking to my Enamulle Riva prediction. Her BAFTA win helped her, but it didn't have the same passionate effect I thought it would, mostly because Riva hasn't been campaigning like Streep and Cotillard did in their respective years. Yet, I'm still thinking she'll pull off an upset. But I'm getting a feeling that maybe Naomi Watts will pull off a surprise because she seems to be getting some last minute buzz, but it's still a big long-shot. Poor Jessica Chastain. She has a chance at surprising, but she's lost too much momentum at this point to win.

Who Should Win: Emanuelle Riva. Her performance is so full of beautiful warmth, strength, and dignity and those later scenes are simply shattering. If she wins, it will be a very worthy one. Jennifer Lawrence would be my 2nd choice.

Best Supporting Actor: Who Will Win: Many are saying De Niro, and I was too for a while, but now, I'm switching to Waltz. He has recently won this award, but his globe and especially his BAFTA win could help him a lot. But this is the modt unpredictable category and wins from Lee Jones, De Niro, Hoffman, and Arkin are possible.

Who Should Win: I've seen De Niro, Jones, and Arkin and De Niro is an easy pick for me. His performance is so amusing and funny and he adds so much to Silver Linings. Jones is fine, but a win is way too much. And Arkin does hardly anything in Argo.

Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway. She's won basically everything for most of the season and voters seem to love her as much as most do. If there is a shocking, Julliete Binoche upset, bet on Sally Field or Helen Hunt, but Anne is still probably winning anyway.

Who Should Win: Anne Hathaway. Her performance is so devastating and terrific. She gives one of the best musical performances in many years. Sally Field is great too though.

Best Original Screenplay: Hmm, it seems like a three way race between Zero Dark Thirty, Amour, and Django Unchained. I'm going to guess Mark Boal because of his recent WGA award and the fact that they may want to honor Zero Dark somewhere and Amour will most likely win Best Foreign Language Film and Django doesn't seem to be too loved by the Academy.

Who Should Win: I've only seen Amour and Zero Dark Thirty and Amour has a beautiful screenplay that would be very deserving if it wins here.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Who Will Win: A three way race between Lincoln, Argo, and Silver Linings Playbook. Since I haven't predicted Silver Linings to win anything else, I feel obliged to predict a win for it here. But Argo could easily triumph as could as lincoln.

Who Should Win: Hmm, a tie between Lincoln and Silver linings would be the only way to make this category fair for me! If pressed, I'd lean towards Lincoln, but both are so good!

I won't predict the other categories, but I'm rooting for Adele, Amour, Zero Dark Thirty for editing, and Les Miserables for Best Art Direction!

Anyway, what are your picks? Youe predictions? Who's the one you're going out on a limb for? Who are rooting for especially?

Sunday, February 10, 2013

BAFTA Predictions

So, here it is. The last and arguably most important pre-Oscar precursors given BAFTA has become a much stronger resource when it comes to predicting who will win in the last 6-7 years. Many of the categories have matched up perfectly with the Oscar and I honestly doubt that anything will change this year.

Best Picture: I think Lincoln will win here. Although Argo is the Best Picture frontrunner, I don't think the British will honor it given I suspect much of it's buzz and momentum is motivated by the fact that it is about hollywood saving people from death. I think Lincoln is sweeping and richly rewarding, something that BAFTA loves and I hope AMPAS loves as well. Another possibility is Les Miserables winning given the Brits love it there, but I doubt it.

Outstanding British Film: Skyfall probably, and it would be really cool to see it winning. I could see Les Mis winning here easily though.

Best Director: Probably Ben Afleck again, but I could see Michael Haneke pulling off an upset. I HOPE, HOPE, HOPE Kathyrn Bigelow wins here though. It's their last chance to honor the best direction of the year!

Best Foreign Film: Amour, easily.

Best Original Screenplay: I hope Amour takes it, but I'm guessing Django Unchained.

Best Adapted Screenplay: I think lincoln will win, but Argo and Silver Linings Playbook are strong contenders as well.

Best Actor: Daniel Day-Lewis. I don't see anything stopping him at this point.

Best Actress: Many are saying J.L is a lock, but I honestly don't think so. She could easily win, but I still think Chastain and Riva are strong contenders, though one of them needs to win here so they can win the Oscar. I'm predicting Riva to win this award now, but I'm a little nervous about Lawrence winning this one. Chastain needs this one bad if she wants to regain her frontrunner status, but I don't see her winning here.

Best Supporting Actor: Phillip Seymour Hoffman, just because, LOL.

Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway.

So, what do you think? What are you rooting for? Do you think BAFTA will be the best predictor of the Oscars this year?

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Amour Review

So, now I have completed my watching of all the films I need to see before Oscar night, besides The Master (it come out on DVD after the awards ceremony) and The Impossible (Which I may or may not see before the awards).

Anyway, Amour is about a husband and a wife who are dealing with the impossible which is the wife dying of heart failure and becoming paralyzed on the right side of her body . Obviously, this is not a happy movie by any means, but the warmth and love of the couple is always evident especially in the first half which is very sad, but not nearly as emotionally draining as the 2nd. The film is brilliantly directed and written and although the movie barely leaves it's apartment setting, the french flavor is still very strong and enjoyable. My one complaint is the way the film handles the character of the daughter; I wish there was more development of her relationship with her mother and father because the film only leaves an impression that their past relationship wasn't that great. But it's a minor one complaint and doesn't take away from being full-filled by the experience of the movie.

As for the performances, they are amazing. Emanuelle Riva completely disappears into the part: She is so warm and beautiful and gets every note right in her portrayal in the beginning, and then is devastatingly real and convincing when she has a 2nd stroke that leaves her unrecognizable. Her chemistry with Jean-Louis Trintignant is fantastic as well. Both actors are completely believable as an elderly couple and to watch their slow demise is truly painful to watch. I think Trintignant was truly robbed of an Oscar nomination as well for his work: He heartbreakingly shows his pain at losing his wife and carries his character arc so well as the film progresses.

However, although Amour is certainly one of the best films of the year, I don't quite love it. Don't get me wrong, it is great and definitely worth seeing. But the incredibly depressing and draining subject matter is not easy viewing and it makes hard to love. I don't want to see it again for a long, long time either. But kudos to the Academy for nominating it for Best Picture, Director, Actress (I still think she will win!), Original Screenplay (I hope it will win here, although it is unlikely), and Foreign Language Film (It will probably win here).

Expect BAFTA predictions tomorrow! And Riva is now my choice for Best Actress!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Lincoln Review

I finally got around to seeing Lincoln again and I was stunned. The film is amazing. I just felt so absorbed in and in rapture of the film: I never wanted to leave it's 1860's time period. A friend of mine on F.b said that the film doesn't feel like a Steven Speilberg film and I agree . Not to say that I think his films are bad, but they often have a little too sentimental feel to them and this never did. The way it was made was so brilliant: He perfectly captures the historical setting and it is shot so flawlessly.

Tony Kushner (The same author of my favorite play, Angels In America) has written a beautiful script. He never lets it become phony or too hollywood. All the dialogue is fantastic and very memorable, especially Field's upstaging of the radicals at the party. My only slight complaint is the film difficult to follow at times because it is a political story and you have to really listen and concentrate to get everything that is happening, but that is fine and in the future, I'll just watch it with subtitles. :).

As some of you may know, I was underwhelmed by D.D.L's performance at first. Now I can say the opposite: He truly blew me away. He disappears into the character so thoroughly that you couldn't see one glimpse of Daniel Day-Lewis in him. He captures all his behaviors and mannerisms perfectly and adds such warm and humor to Abraham Lincoln and the results are something amazing. I hope and think he will win Best Actor, bt you never know until the envelope is opened. As for Sally Field, I thought she was superb. She is brilliantly in character and understands her to a T. I love the fire and passion Field brings to the part and she also brings the same warmth and humor that her onscreen husband brings. I do think/wish the character could have been given a little more to do, given she isn't onscreen that much, but a win would definitely be deserving. As for the rest of the supporting players, I thought they were all fantastic, especially James Spader and Tommy Lee Jones, but all of them were great.

I REALLY, REALLY hope it wins Best Picture, but I doubt it will because Argo just won the DGA and since it's also won the PGA and SAG award for Best Cast it looks like it's on the road to victory. It's not a bad film at all, just not that special of a film to me and certainly no way an equal to the masterpiece that Lincoln is. Ah well. I just hope Steven Speilberg wins Best Director. I'll be able to live with Argo's Best Picture win if Speilberg is honored with a well-deserved third directing statuette.

Expect BAFTA predictions and a review of Amour next week!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Beasts Of The Southern Wild ,Argo, and North By Northwest

So, I'm back!! I've been very busy in the past few days, but I have seen several oscar films recently and have now decided to make another review! P.S: I'm sorry that I haven't done a review of Lincoln yet, Louis, but I will very soon! As well as Amour!!!

Beasts Of The Southern Wild: I loved this film. It really was an amazing experience. It was so full of color and life and it really was one of those films that celebrates the nature and beauty of life something that is very rare to see in a film these days. I loved it's mix of culture, fantasy, and the disaster of Hurricane Katerina and I loved the way it was directed. The story was very strange and confusing in parts, but I think it's all part of it's magic. Wallis was great: She gives a very commanding, subtle portrayal with real power and understanding of her character. She also adds a terrific awarness of the harsh world that Hushpuppy lives in and it makes her performance very powerful. However, I think a win would be a bit too much given her young age and because of Jennifer Lawrence's performance, but a nomination is certainly deserving and for now, I'd rank her above Jessica Chastain. Anyway, I'm so glad that the academy noticed this terrific film and I hope it wins something.

Argo: Argo is currently the frontrunner to win Best Picture and unfortunately, I won't be too pleased if it wins. Now, don't get me wrong, I thought the film was great and impressively directed and written, but Best Picture?? Cmon. In such an inovative and fantastic year, the Academy seems to be deciding to give the award to this film which is good, but hardly something new or revolutionary. But that being said, Ben Afleck is great and the film certainly tells a gripping, suspenseful story that is entertaining and fun to watch. The performances are mostlu very strong, yet I feel like the CIA employees who are being rescued felt phony. it is worth seeing, but I wouldn't go so far in giving it Best Picture or Best Cast at the SAGS.

North By Northwest: I watched this film in my drama class this week and I thought it was fantastic. It tells a very layered and suspenesful story and it's a lot of fun to see it unfold. it's masterfully directed by Alfred Hitchcock: Every shot is so well filmed and the whole world of the film is so well captured and captivating because of him. I thought Cary Grant was great, but I think his character is a little stupid to fall so easily into Eve's trap, but he still plays it well. I also thought Eva Marie Saint was terrfic and a nomination or maybe even a win would have been deserved.