The Oscars 2014 & My Yearly Half-Assed Predictions

12 Years A Slave
12 Years A Slave

This year is quite a special Oscar season with me since I’ve been particularly indifferent about it. Usually I’m aware of buzz about the Oscars, I hear about other awards shows leading up to them and I’m asked to fill out people’s Oscar pools. None of that happened this year.

It seems like this year is one of those ‘blah’ years with the Oscars. I haven’t heard anyone talking about it, it doesn’t seem like most of the nominations are going to draw viewers to watch it on TV and other than stumbling onto a commercial that Ellen DeGeneres is hosting this year (there’s a reason for me not to tune in), these Oscars are likely going to come and go quicker than most for me.

But as with tradition I’ll stop and talk about it quickly and throw my hat in the ring of who’s going to win the golden naked guys. This year I’m really going out on a limb since I have only seen two of the films nominated for Best Picture – Captain Phillips and Gravity, and both I liked. Neither of which will win.

It will probably be 12 Years A Slave winning Best Picture. I’ve heard it’s very good and it seems just like the kind of ‘important topic’ movie that voters like to have win. I actually had an opportunity to see it, but just wasn’t in the mood to feel sad and guilty that night. I hear it’s a really heavy film. I’ll see it eventually.

There are nine pictures nominated for Best Picture. I’m not sure how the Academy determines the number of Best Picture nominees anymore. I think now it can be anywhere between five to ten films.

Since they changed that acouple years back it hasn’t made things anymore exciting for the ceremony. They should just say any movie that had a theatrical release is in the running and reveal the number of votes every film got. That could make things a bit more interesting to see if The Lone Ranger got some rogue votes. Although Ranger and Bad Grandpa are both competing for best makeup and hair. That could be a compelling category to watch.

Matthew McConaughey Jared Leto Dallas Buyers Club
Dallas Buyers Club

I am as shocked as anyone that soon we’ll be saying Matthew McConaughey….Oscar winner. Yes, the guy from Fools Gold! Does anyone remember when he first came on the scene and he was being heralded as a new Paul Newman?

Then he settled into making insipid romantic comedies with cutesy titles like Failure to Launch. Lately he’s been spending more time doing quality work, working with more talented filmmakers and not phoning in his performances by just smiling and taking off his shirt. In Dallas Buyers Club, he lost a bunch weight for his part and I’ve heard he gives a terrific performance. Congrats Matt. Now you’ll have enough clout to try to make Sahara 2 happen.

Everyone has talked about Cate Blanchett giving an Oscar-winning performance in Blue Jasmine since it was first released. Things might have dipped a bit with Woody Allen’s personal controversy, but this is about art so in all likelihood voters won’t allow Allen’s behind-the-scenes scandals affect Blanchett from winning the acting award in his movie.

Jared Leto has gotten a lot of attention for his cross-dressing performance in Dallas Buyers Club and seems like a shoo-in with this. Barkhad Abdi was great in Captain Phillips and could be an upset here, but I’m thinking it won’t happen and sadly he’s going to fall off the Hollywood radar.

Supporting Actress comes down between Lupita Nyong’o and Jennifer Lawrence. Nyong’o is the outsider but is said to be fantastic in 12 Years a Slave. Then Lawrence is one of the most popular young actresses in Hollywood burning up the box office with Hunger Games movies and in-between giving quality performances in smaller films. I’m going to go with Lawrence winning with voters giving her a ‘you’ve been playing our game very well, please keep it up’-sort of pat-on-the-back.

Gravity Alfonso Cuaron Sandra Bullock George Clooney
Cuarón filming Gravity

Gravity will win a bunch of awards in technical, sound and effect categories and Alfonso Cuarón will win best director for it. It’s hard not be impressed with what that movie does visually and Cuarón will reap the benefits from it.

So there you go. I’ll again say I haven’t seen most of what’s nominated and might not have any clue as to what I’m talking about and could be completely wrong on everything, but I don’t really care about it at all this year. I certainly don’t plan on watching the Oscars and will probably be spending the evening catching up on the Walking Dead. I’ll see if I’m right with any of these predication Monday morning.

UPDATE:

A half hour before the Oscars I got a call asking to fill out someone’s Oscars picks as they just arrived at a friends party to watch the show. Some people actually do that!

Quickly combing the internet I stole popular picks. Also someone had reminded me that Jennifer Lawrence won last year so I reversed that pick back to Lupita Nyon’o. In the end my picks won the pool. I still have yet to see any Oscar highlights. I’m not sure if I’m really interested in it. Especially after hearing all this talk about Ellen ordering pizza and talking selfies. I’m already sick of it without ever watching it.

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4 Responses

  1. Capt Nemo says:

    Is it that Hollywood has become a shadow of it's former self or that the term "Hollywood Celebrity" now makes ones skin crawl that he cause the Oscars to be relegated to ash heap of entertainment history.

    When Hollywood was making Blockbusters like "Ghostbusters" or "Raider's of the Lost Ark" then their was true excitement. You wanted to see Hollywood reward itself for jobs well done. But I don't think Hollywood has had a truly great year since 1997 when excitement of computer animation was in full swing and hadn't become tedious. Now they seem to be pulling their punches on exciting fare and not broading their horizons. Everything is a sequel, remake, or political statement.

    On the other hand, it could be because you now live in a culture that tears down celebrities. We seem less interested in seeing these guys succeed and hope more that they fail. For example, Will Smith's attempt to make his kid a celebrity. I think people wanted to see that go down in flames for our own entertainment. So why would any of us want to see the glitterati get together each year to pat themselves on the back. In fact, the only interesting stories we get about the Oscars these days is how much of a non-event they are. I think part of it is the public intentionally not watching that show just so they could have a hand in slapping down the Hollywood upper crust.

    Anyone have any ideas on why no one is interested in movie events anymore?

    And don't get me started on "The Razzies!"

  2. spaceodds says:

    I was never interested in the Oscars. More then half the films that get all the hype and nominations are pushed to one side as the years go by, and their legacy survives on trivia quizzes. However in the last few years, the Oscars have become an important night for me, why? Because its the night I might win some extra money. This time I have placed my bets around three months in advance, hoping to get some decent odds, because come the night, the odds are terrible.

  3. spaceodds says:

    @ Capt Nemo.

    Excitement in Hollywood? Whilst I agree that some of the big blockbusters certainly were great, Ghostbusters and Raiders are two such examples, for me the Oscars ended in 1980 (and I wasn't even born yet) Sure there have been some okay justifiable winners over the years. But seriously when was the last time you saw a year when the films nominated were all truly great? For me it would have to be as far back as 1974. The Godfather Part 2, Chinatown, The Conversation, even the goddamn The Towering Inferno. Then you have the other films being honored in other categories such as Murder on The Orient Express, Young Frankenstein, Day for Night, Thunderbolt and Lightfoot and Fellini's Amacord.

    I mean just look at the list, a mixed bag of brilliant films that have become true favorites. It's no wonder that some of these films have seen a re-release or two over the years.

    1980 was the year that it all went to hell. Ordinary People!? Who remembers that film? And this is the film that beat Tess, The Elephant Man and, most insultingly of all, it beat Raging Bull! Seriously these so called film fans chose Robert Redford (a decent enough actor) over Roman Polanski, David Lynch AND Martin Scorsese!

    Since then the Oscars have become a joke and have transformed itself into a fashion show of the glitterati. The whole thing has become a sham, and pretty much all the films that get nominated are forgotten about in a few years.

    • Capt. Nemo says:

      Last thing I remember, I saw an Italian filmmaker going crazy and bouncing on Spielberg's shoulders. That was when I realized that this was as good as it ever was going to get.

      And I never watched the Oscars again.

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