Old Academy Award Choices

Here are my past Academy Award Choices in each year.

86th Academy Awards

I know it has been a while since I said I will do this, but this is my opinion on who is going to win the 86th Academy Awards. Here are some rules:

1.) I am only going to pick out films I have seen.
I have seen a fair amount of films of 2013, but I did not watch all the films that are nominated in the Academy Awards. Here is a list of nominated Best Picture films that I did not see:
American Hustle
Dallas Buyers Club
The Wolf of Wall Street
Basically, I have only seen three nominated Best Picture films (Captain Phillips, Gravity, and 12 Years A Slave).

2.) I am concentrating on nominations that has more than one films that I have seen in that category.
Example: If I have to pick a film for the Best Animated Feature Film, I can only pick Frozen, because I have never seen those other films, and it is not fair for me to pick a film that I think deserves an award if I have never seen the other ones first. The same rule also applies to the list of films I have never seen in a nomination of a certain category.

Here is the list of nominations that I have only seen one film in that category:
Best Actor: Chiwetel Ejiofor – 12 Years a Slave as Solomon Northup
Best Actress: Sandra Bullock – Gravity as Dr. Ryan Stone
Best Supporting Actress: Lupita Nyong’o – 12 Years a Slave as Patsey
Best Animated Feature Film: Frozen – Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee, and Peter Del Vecho (It is shame that is was NOT NOMINATED FOR BEST PICTURE .)
Best Animated Short Film: Get a Horse! – Lauren MacMullan and Dorothy McKim
Best Original Song: “Let It Go” from Frozen – Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez (This BETTER win.)
Best Makeup and Hairstyling: The Lone Ranger – Joel Harlow and Gloria Pasqua-Casny

Here is the list of nominations of the movies I have never seen on that category:
Best Writing – Original Screenplay
Best Foreign Language Film
Best Documentary – Feature
Best Documentary – Short Subject
Best Live Action Short Film

3.) These are my opinions.
You do not have to agree with me on which films I think is going to win this category. Feel free to comment on anything I mentioned. Besides, I am likely going to be wrong once the Oscars give out the awards.

With those in mind, here is my opinion on who is going to win in the 86th Academy Awards:

Best Visual Effects: The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug – Joe Letteri, Eric Saindon, David Clayton, and Eric Reynolds
This one is really hard since all the other nominations (Gravity, Iron Man 3, The Lone Ranger, and Star Trek: Into Darkness) did a great job in the visual effects. However, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug stands to me, because of one thing that stands out over all the other films: Smaug. He is so frightening and realistic, you may likely going to shake in your boots to realize how terrifying he is. The other effects (i.e. fire, lava, magic, orcs) are amazing, too. It is close to realistic that the visual effects people can do.

Best Film Editing: 12 Years a Slave – Joe Walker
This is also hard to choose when the other great choice if Gravity. This one stands out, because certain moments of 12 Years a Slave take its time, and show what and when certain moments are needed, and how long it is suppose to take (i.e. the hanging scene…).

Best Costume Design: 12 Years a Slave – Patricia Norris & The Great Gatsby – Catherine Martin
We have a tie. Both of these stand out, because they both seem so similar to me. It is true that they are from both different time periods, but they both fit well in those periods. What these people wear, I can completely buy because they fit.

Best Cinematography: Gravity – Emmanuel Lubezki
It is not easy to do cinematography when the majority of the film takes place in space (or in a green screen). Because of this, Gravity deserves to win this award out of every single film in this category.

Best Production Design: I honestly have no idea since I have never seen any of the art for any of the films, so here is a guess: Gravity or 12 Years a Slave.

Best Sound Mixing: Lone Survivor – Andy Koyama, Beau Borders, and David Brownlow
One of the reasons why I like this film so much is the sound. They make you feel every single, painful, disgusting, hurtful, powerful, dangerous, and heart-stabbing sounds that emphasize how much pain these soldiers go through. That is what makes this movie memorable and awesome.

Best Sound Editing: Lone Survivor – Wylie Stateman
Same reason for the Best Sound Mixing.

Best Original Score: Gravity – Steven Price
Music is a very important element in film, because it is what drags the emotions of what is occurring. Every single moment of dread and hope in this film carries out, because the music is so inspiring and epic. From the moment that the space debris crashes to the landing on Earth, the music can bring the moment to life.

Best Writing – Adapted Screenplay: 12 Years a Slave – John Ridley
It helps when something adapted to the film is very true to its original source, and manages to still make it interesting enough to get our attention. There is conflict, character, drama, and emotion that gets us to care about the situation and characters. It is well-written, and well-deserved for this award.

Best Supporting Actor: Barkhad Abdi – Captain Phillips as Abduwali Muse
Despite his short and skinny stature, Barkhad Abdi manages to pull off the intimidating short leader that should not be pushed around if you try to trick, but is also trying to find a less violent way on getting what he wants for him and his people. Do not mess with him, or you will go with him in that orange submarine.

Best Director: Steve McQueen – 12 Years a Slave
Being a director is not easy since they have to lead everything in the film, but Steve McQueen pulls it off in 12 Years a Slave. He gives the actors the idea of what their characters are supposed to feel and do, he puts the script to life, he lets emotions come to the story, etc. He did it in his own way, and he did a great job.

And finally, the moment you have been waiting for…

Best Picture: 12 Years a Slave – Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Steve McQueen, and Anthony Katagas
If you have seen my list of top 10 films of 2013, you should have seen this coming. What you should also see coming is my rage of why Frozen is not in that nomination! Anyway, 12 Years a Slave is going to win Best Picture, because it does everything so well. Captain Phillips and Gravity (and the other films I have not seen) may have done well in their own way, but something about them I just do not like as much. 12 Years a Slave shows how well-detailed and well-made a movie that deserves an award: the Best Picture of 2013.

That is my opinion on who is going to win. If you disagree, feel free to comment on who you think is going to win. Thanks for reading.


87th Academy Awards

Sorry it took so long, but here is my opinion on who is going to win in the 87th Academy Awards. For those who do not know, here are the rules:

1.) I am only going to pick out films I have seen.
Note: I have seen all of the films nominated for Best Picture. Hooray for me.

2.) I am concentrating on nominations that has more than one films that I have seen in that category.

Here is the list of nominations that I have only seen one film in that category:
Best Animated Short Film: Feast – Patrick Osborne and Kristina Reed

Here is the list of nominations of the movies I have never seen on that category:
Best Foreign Language Film
Best Documentary – Feature
Best Documentary – Short Subject
Best Live Action Short Film

3.) These are my opinions.

Let’s begin:

Best Visual Effects: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – Joe Letteri, Dan Lemmon, Daniel Barrett and Erik Winquist
Amazing visual effects from all the other contestants, but Dawn of the Planet of the Apes wins, because the ape characters look so realistic. Thanks to the mocap actors and special effects team, they manage to make these ape characters feel so alive and similar to the actual apes.

Best Film Editing: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Barney Pilling
Even though I recently just saw this, the one thing this film amazes me on is the editing. It feels so fluent and natural with its great out-of-control vibe (that sounds weird, I know). It knows where and when to show this shot, and listen to this music. Great job.

Best Costume Design: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Milena Canonero
Another thing that stands out from this film is the costume. If you seen this film, you notice that the odd thing about it is what the people are wearing. They stand out in this bizarre, yet awesome film. The colors, the 1930s design, it just shouts unique…and weird.

Best Makeup and Hairstyling: Guardians of the Galaxy – Elizabeth Yianni-Georgiou and David White
While the costumes may not stand out as much when compared to The Grand Budapest Hotel, Guardians of the Galaxy has something unique when it comes to this category. There are alien makeups (Karen Gillan had to shave her hair in order to play the part of Nebula), human makeup, interesting hairstyles, they just stand out.

Best Cinematography: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Robert Yeoman
I may have been Birdman in this if I did not just recently watch this film (plus, while it is technically impressive, it is also a narrative headache). The cinematography has an odd subtly since it moves in straight lines in any direction. There are no over-the-shoulder shots (usually), but the film trusts the audience on what the characters are looking at.

Best Production Design: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Adam Stockhausen (Production Design); Anna Pinnock (Set Decoration) & Interstellar – Nathan Crowley (Production Design); Gary Fettis (Set Decoration)
Either one of these is fine, because they are so hard to choose which is better, so I decided to pick both. They are both unique in the production department, but they fit into their own film genres. The Grand Budapest Hotel looks like a colorful and living setting, while Interstellar looks like an active and cold (or hot) environment.

Best Sound Mixing: Whiplash – Craig Mann, Ben Wilkins and Thomas Curley
With the movie with music involved, I believe this is required. Honestly, I am not the best on sound mixing, so I am just going to pick this, because I like it.

Best Sound Editing: Interstellar – Richard King
Same thing goes to this one from the last nomination.

Best Original Song: “Glory” from Selma – Music and Lyric by John Legend and Common
“Everything is Awesome” is awesome, but I am a little tired of hearing it despite having a point (and you guys might have thought I may not Let It Go… he he). “Glory” has more weight and emotion considering its movie is about the events in Selma. It is has more inspiration than a song about joy about random stuff.

Best Original Score: The Grand Budapest Hotel – Alexandre Desplat
Fits the atmosphere in the film well, and it really stands out over Interstellar’s Inception-science style of music. Next…

Best Animated Feature Film: How to Train Your Dragon 2 – Dean DeBlois and Bonnie Arnold
I WOULD have picked The Lego Movie, but it did not get nominated, so let us move on (>:(). Well-written and well-animated, this animated film has a bunch characters from the last movie grow up, and the dragon sequences are awesome enough to make you feel that you are flying with them.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Whiplash – Damien Chazelle from his short film of the same name
I will explain this in another nomination.

Best Original Screenplay: Nightcrawler – Dan Gilroy
This is a very well-written film about a man who wants to become successful, except this man is a sociopath who would do anything to get that goal, even if it means sacrificing his co-workers in the process. I have seen a video that shows that there is more to this, making it more clever than the movie shows.

Best Supporting Actress: Emma Stone – Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) as Sam Thomson
Even though I do not care much about Birdman, Emma Stone does a great job acting in the movie. I do not really have much to say about this, because the other choices I have in the nominations are the ones that either I have not seen or do not care much.

Best Supporting Actor: J. K. Simmons – Whiplash as Terence Fletcher
Once you see J.K. Simmons act in this movie, you do not want to stop paying attention to him. He plays calm, strict, scary, and monstrous throughout the entire film, and he does an amazing job. You do not want him in your music class.

Best Actress: Rosamund Pike – Gone Girl as Amy Elliott-Dunne
I would explain about this actress and her character, but doing so may reveal spoilers for those who have not watch Gone Girl. I will put it simply: she is a great actress, and you will understand why if you watch this movie.

Best Actor: Eddie Redmayne – The Theory of Everything as Stephen Hawking
It is not easy acting as a guy who considered to be the smartest person in the world right now. What is even harder is to play a guy who has ALS, and Eddie Redmayne manages to pull that off. He looks miserable, but still manages to show off his skills as a genius. That is one role that very few actors can manage to play.

Best Directing: Wes Anderson – The Grand Budapest Hotel
Everything about this film is done well thanks to Wes Anderson. Great cinematography, amazing settings, fantastic acting, and interesting choices made by this guy earns my pick for this nomination as best director.


Best Picture: Whiplash – Jason Blum, Helen Estabrook, and David Lancaster
I managed to watch all the films nominated for Best Picture, so here is the rundown: American Sniper was nice, but I did not think is best picture material. Birdman is well-done, but not my type of film. Boyhood is one of the most overrated films I have ever seen. The Grand Budapest Hotel is fantastic and awesome, but it misses its mark for a couple reasons in which I will explain in a moment. The Imitation Game is great, but it did not really stand out that much. Selma is awesome, but there are a couple of problems that still bother me about that movie. The Theory of Everything is impressive, but slow. Whiplash is an awesome film with fantastic writing, amazing characters, great conflict, and awesome music. This is a film you are not going to forget, especially J.K. Simmons as the terrifying Terrence Fletcher. Go watch it, and you will see why.

These are my choice that I think who is going to win in this Academy Awards. I will post my Top 10 Best and Worst Films of 2014 (if I can). Stay tune, and thanks for reading.


88th Academy Awards