The Oscar Predictions – Winners

The 85th Academy Awards® will air live on Oscar® Sunday, February 24, 2013.

It’s been a tradition that I open up my predictions a bit before making the final ones on Sunday before the actual awards time.

BEST PICTURE

  1. Spotlight
  2. Mad Max Fury Road
  3. Room
  4. The Martian
  5. The Revenant
  6. The Big Short
  7. Bridge of Spies
  8. Brooklyn

Well, I already made it clear that I hope that Spotlight will win. I still haven’t seen Room and Brooklyn but I will watch them both before The Oscars on Sunday but I doubt either of them will be better for me than Spotlight. The Best Picture will go to Spotlight, The Big Short or The Revenant. The most of the people are predicting that it’ll go to The Revenant but I have my doubts… I might change my prediction but at the moment I’m also predicting that the eventual winner will be Spotlight.

BEST DIRECTOR

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road – George Miller
  2. Spotlight – Thomas McCarthy
  3. Room – Lenny Abrahamson
  4. The Revenant – Alejandro Gonzales Iñarritu
  5. The Big Short – Adam McKay

Three words: Alejandro Gonzales Iñarritu. (Ok, a slight change for George Miller, I guess but I don’t think so.)

Alejandro-González-Iñárritu

BEST ACTOR

  1. The Martian – Matt Damon
  2. Steve Jobs – Michael Fassbender
  3. The Revenant – Leonardo DiCaprio
  4. The Danish Girl – Eddie Redmayne
  5. Trumbo – Bryan Cranston

No competition here, it’s finally his year. All salute to Mr. DiCaprio!

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

  1. Bridge of Spies – Mark Rylance
  2. Creed – Sylvester Stallone
  3. The Big Short – Christian Bale
  4. The Revenant – Tom Hardy
  5. Spotlight – Mark Ruffalo

I think and I predict that sentiment will win in this category and thus the Oscar will go to Sylvester Stallone. I don’t really know what I think about it as he’s not that good in Creed but he did come up with Rocky Balboa and didn’t win for him all those years ago. Mark Rylance was scene stealing in Bridge of Spies and all three others were better than Stallone in their films. I’d like to see Rylance to win.

BEST ACTRESS

  1. Carol – Cate Blanchett
  2. Joy – Jennifer Lawrence
  3. 45 Years – Charlotte Rampling
  4. Room – Brie Larson
  5. Brooklyn – Saoirse Ronan

This one is Larson’s to lose. I have no personal opinion yet.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

  1. Carol – Rooney Mara
  2. The Hateful Eight – Jennifer Jason Leigh
  3. Steve Jobs – Kate Winslet
  4. Spotlight – Rachel McAdams
  5. The Danish Girl – Alicia Vikander

I think Kate Winslet might upset in this category. She’s been winning some precursor awards but she hasn’t been competing against Vikander’s role in The Danish Girl. Then again Vikander won SAG and she’s THE IT girl of the season. And her role was very, very good. Hmmm… I guess I’m still predicting her. At the moment at least. I thought Winslet was very good too.

kate

BEST SCREENPLAY (original)

  1. Straight Outta Compton – Andrea Berloff, Jonathan Herman, S.Leigh Savide & Alan Wenkus
  2. Inside Out – Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve, Ronnie Del Carmen & Josh Cooley
  3. Spotlight – Tom McCarthy & Josh Singer
  4. Bridge of Spies – Matt Charman & Coen brothers
  5. Ex Machina – Alex Garland

Should go to Spotlight.

BEST SCREENPLAY (adapted)

  1. Carol – Phyllis Nagy
  2. Room – Emma Donoghue
  3. The Martian – Drew Goddard
  4. Brooklyn – Nick Hornby
  5. The Big Short – Charles Randolph & Adam McKay

Should go to The Big Short. In both writing categories there is a chance to award the directors of Spotlight and The Big Short as they have writing credits of their films as well.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

  • Mad Max Fury Road
  • The Revenant
  • Sicario
  • Carol
  • The Hateful Eight

Three in a row! Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you Mr. Emmanuel “Chivo” Lubezki! (Oh, if you didn’t know, he shot The Revenant.)

BEST EDITING

  • Mad Max Fury Road
  • The Revenant
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  • Spotlight
  • The Big Short

Eddie Awards (given out by American Cinema Editors) went to Mad Max and The Big Short and I can’t see those two losing here either. I just don’t know which one will. Both have notable editing, even for people who usually don’t pay attention to things like that. In The Big Short it is the main story telling tool, so at the moment my money’s there. But it could be Mad Max too. I just don’t know. And I can’t decide which one I prefer, both are cool.

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN

  • Mad Max Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • Bridge of Spies
  • The Danish Girl
  • The Revenant

Precursors tell me that this one is to Mad Max’s to lose. I personally liked the production design of Bridge of Spies a lot. But just the sake of those cars, I predict Mad Max to win.

mad-max-fury-road-production-design

BEST COSTUME DESIGN

  • Cinderella
  • Carol
  • The Revenant
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Danish Girl

I love Cinderella’s dresses! They’re so beautiful. But precursors say Mad Max again. And then again, like I wrote in my review, the clothes in The Danish Girl are like characters themselves. So, a bit hard one. And Carol is very much stylish. But I think I will bet on Mad Max again.

cinderella_costumes

BEST MAKEUP

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • A 100-year-old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared
  • The Revenant

Mad Max. At least should be. The Revenant has cool work as well. I haven’t seen the third option but I think nomination is enough for it.

BEST SCORE

  • Carol – Carter Burwell
  • Bridge of Spies – Thomas Newman
  • The Hateful Eight – Ennio Morricone
  • Sicario – Jóhann Jóhannsson
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens – John Williams

This one has to go to Ennio Morricone, The Hateful Eight has cool soundtrack. John Williams also managed to compose a nice one, again. And my personal favourite is Sicario’s soundtrack but as  Jóhann Jóhannsson just won the last year, I don’t see it happen this year again. So Morricone.

BEST SONG

  • Spectre – Writings on the Wall
  • The Hunting Ground – Til It Happens To You
  • Youth – Simple Song #3
  • Fifty Shades of Grey – Earned It
  • Racing Extinction – Manta Ray

Weeknd just won Grammy for his song in Fifty Shades of Grey but I still think this one will go to Lady Gaga and Til It Happens To You (co-writer Diane Warren). Only three of these songs will be performed at the show, it’s all about the star status and stage is set only for Lady Gaga, Weeknd and Sam Smith.

BEST SOUND EDITING

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • Sicario
  • The Revenant
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Mad Max, The Martian or Star Wars? Or The Revenant? I have no clue. Sound editors will have their Golden Reels awards given away only on tomorrow. I hope I’ll be wiser after that.

BEST SOUND MIXING

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • Bridge of Spies
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  • The Revenant

According to the precursors, this one goes to The Revenant. I don’t know otherwise and I have to admit that Bridge of Spies was the only one where I paid attention to the sound mixing, it worked really well.

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • Ex Machina
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  • The Martian
  • The Revenant

I think this one goes to Star Wars. Mad Max has a change as well as does The Revenant but still, I’m predicting Star Wars.

starwars

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE

  • Son of Saul (Hungary)
  • Mustang (France)
  • Embrace of the Serpent (Colombia)
  • Theeb (Jordan)
  • A War (Denmark)

Son of Saul. I haven’t seen any of these, so I got no opinion.

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

  • Inside Out
  • When Marnie Was There
  • Anomalisa
  • Shaun the Sheep Movie
  • Boy & the World

 Should go to Inside Out, anything else is a surprise.

BEST DOCUMENTARY

  • Amy
  • Cartel Land
  • The Look of Silence
  • What Happened, Miss Simone?
  • Winter on Fire

Amy is the only one I’ve seen but it was also one of the best films that I saw last year. I hope it wins and I’m also predicting it.

BEST ANIMATED SHORT

  1. World of Tomorrow
  2. Sanjay’s Super Team
  3. Bear Story
  4. We Can’t Live Without Cosmos
  5. Prologue

I hope Sanjay’s Super Team wins as it looks cool and would be one of those awards that would go to minorities but World of Tomorrow has a good change as well, I think. I didn’t really like it despite the good message.

Sanjay's_Super_Team_poster

BEST SHORT DOCUMENTARY

  1. Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah
  2. Last Day of Freedom
  3. Body Team 12
  4. Chau Beyond the Lines
  5. A Girl in the River

I love Chau but it looks like other people like Body Team 12 or Claude Lanzmann more. According to Scott Feinberg of Hollywood Reporter, many of those voters who haven’t seen short films might just vote for Lanzmann because of his name and Shoah, so at the moment I’m predicting Lanzmann.

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT

  • Ave Maria
  • Day One
  • Shok
  • Stutterer
  • Everything Will Be Okay (Alles Wird Gut)

I have no clue. Stutterer sounds like easy one to predict.

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Pretty Valentine 2016 Top-10

I wrote this six days ago and I had all the intentions to publish it on Sunday. Apparently my real life kept me so busy, I totally forgot but because there’s never enough beauty in the world, Happy belated Valentine’s Day, folks!

Valentines-Day-Heart-Photo

As I’ve been sick and still trying to get over it, I treat myself with some nice photos of hot movie people that I’ve only come across lately or only just realised that these people are actually hot. Counting down from the newest hotness. Hopefully you enjoy watching beautiful people in beautiful pictures as much as I do. Happy Valentine’s Day! 

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Freddie Fox. Lovely face, great half-smile. Flamboyant and interesting. English. Check The Riot Club and Pride and what I’ve heard, also Cucumber, the TV series that I haven’t seen.

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Julian Morris. Born in London, mother from Zimbabwe, father from South Africa. Smile. Plays cute guys. Check New Girl & Pretty Little Liars.

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Aaron Paul. Yeah, from Breaking Bad. Those blue eyes. I love his eyes. And the way he says “bitch”. In Breaking Bad, he’s the ultimate bad boy that you just have to rescue. P.S. I’m still watching Breaking Bad, so please, don’t spoil it to me.

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Tom Hardy. I actually said some time ago (after Bane) that I don’t find him hot. Obviously, there was something wrong with me. Obviously. Idiot (= me). So let’s have another look just to make it obvious that it was me who was wrong and for hotness check Inception and Lawless. For talent; anything he’s done.

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Alicia Vikander. What’s not to like? She’s annoyingly beautiful, so talented, stylish and yet she seems to have “’em balls”. She also has Michael Fassbender. Yeah, I kinda hate her. And love at the same time. Check anything she’s done and for hotness I guess The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is a good bet, they have nice chemistry with Armie Hammer.

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Gerard Butler. Apparently it took multiple viewings of multiple “lady films” for me to realise that Butler is hottie. The voice, charisma or that bad boy attitude. OR accent, obviously. Check P.S. I Love You or The Ugly Truth if you can. But he’s kinda hot also in How To Train Your Dragon (and 2) and that’s only his voice.

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Bobby Campo. I saw him in Scream the series (TV) and found him attractive. I’ve probably forgotten his face next year this time but for now, he can be one of my valentines.

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Max Irons. Eyes, again. Features of his face too, I guess. Check The Riot Club (which, btw, is nice for anyone, like me, who has a soft spot for snobby English upper class brats that are quite handsome, speak impeccably beautiful English and are arrogant and smart plus dress themselves well) and also Red Riding Hood if you can tolerate the fact that it’s really bad. Max is Jeremy Iron’s son, good luck with living up to his dad’s reputation.

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Oscar Isaac. Talent. Enormous talent. That is just really, really hot. Also, he looks very good and I like his smile. And his body. 😀 But the real point is the talent. He has been the movie world hero of lately to me with his capability of being anything, just check The Force Awakens (for hotness and funny side of his), Ex Machina (for total creepiness) or Inside Llewyn Davis (for being real). He is unbelievably talented and I’m so glad I have so many films of his still to watch. And did I remember mention is musical talent too, the clip is from the film 10 Years, it’s worth to check too, a lot of name actors playing nice small parts.

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Domhnall Gleeson. Again, the talent. Then the hair, eyes, smile, the whole package. There is something very endearing in him. I saw him in Soho when they were taking photos for Esquire magazine in London last October. I still regret that I tried to play it cool. He’s hot and so, so talented and I really would like him to be my valentine for real. Love him! Check anything but my favourites are Ex Machina, Anna Karenina and About Time. And I’m sure I will just love him in Brooklyn. ❤

The Oscars Reviews: The Danish Girl & Carol

In the last post it was two stories of guys, this time it’s time for the girls.

thedanishgirlposterThe Danish Girl (2015)

Directed by Tom Hooper

Written by Lucinda Coxon, the book by David Ebershoff

Starring Eddie Redmayne & Alicia Vikander

Synopsis: “A fictitious love story loosely inspired by the lives of Danish artists Lili Elbe and Gerda Wegener. Lili and Gerda’s marriage and work evolve as they navigate Lili’s groundbreaking journey as a transgender pioneer.”

The Danish Girl is beautiful. “Beautiful” is the word that describes it perfectly, this kind of distantly beautiful, a film you admire and can see its beauty but can’t really feel its warmth or sadness. The Danish Girl doesn’t really move you in the way, I think, it should. But then again, it’s really well-made and has two spectacular performances in the centre of it.

The Danish Girl is nominated for four Oscars; the best performance by actor in a leading role, the best performance by an actress in a supporting role, the best costume design and the best production design. And it deserves to be nominated in all of them. The film is very feminine and thus the costumes are also very feminine, they flow and dance around our characters, you could even say that the costumes are characters themselves as they are huge part of the transformation that our main character goes through. And as I said, The Danish Girl is beautiful and that is lavishly showed in production design. A viewer’s eyes can rest on the screen, it’s so very nice to look at. I also enjoyed how the film is shot, how the light has been used to highlight the features of faces or even figures.

alicia_vikander

The best parts in The Danish Girl are still the performances of Eddie Redmayne and especially Alicia Vikander. Redmayne greatly achieves to portrait the torture Lily is going inside and his looks are just perfect for the part. And as we should already know, he’s very talented actor. But the find here (and in Ex Machina also) is Alicia Vikander, she’s astonishing and should win the Oscar for her performance. It’ll be robbed if she doesn’t. She was already robbed by putting her in supporting when her role is obviously leading lady. While Redmayne’s character is a bit off-putting in her selfishness, Vikander’s Gerda is more rooted, more real, more emotional of those two. It’s easier to understand her suffering and the reactions she gives in situations. If that story is true, how that incredible woman took his husband’s change, I have nothing but admiration towards her. What a woman!

While The Danish Girl is too distant for my taste, it still should be seen just because of those two performances. And as we all know, the lives of transgender people are more than relevant at the moment and here is a story that might shed some understanding on the matter.

Rating: ***½ (out of 5)

carolposter

Carol (2015)

Directed by Todd Haynes

Written by Phyllis Nagy, novel by Patricia Highsmith

Starring Rooney Mara & Cate Blanchett

Synopsis: “An aspiring photographer develops an intimate relationship with an older woman.”

Another case where there is total category fraud in the Oscars again. Rooney Mara IS the leading lady here. More so than Blanchett but to be honest, they both are. It is a story of two women who face the hard reality of life when they fall for each other. Besides that they should both be in a leading category for actresses, they both are worth of that. 2015 was a great year for ladies and all of them more than deserve their nominations and recognition they are getting. Hopefully the salaries will follow the suit.

Carol is nominated for six Oscars. I predicted it would get nine nominations, I was wrong with the director, production design and best picture. The latter especially surprised me as it’s still nominated in several categories and to me that means it’s one of the best films of the year. But I guess it’s not nominated because of the weird voting system of the Oscars (explanation here at Gold Derby). Because it definitely is not the best film of the year. To me it wasn’t even near. Yes, it has everything is should have but I just didn’t really care. Blanchett’s character is not very nice, she seems uninterested in others’ feelings. Mara is good and vulnerable but for some reason she has always been great at picturing distant characters and again she does that well. If The Danish Girl was too emotionless, Carol was even more so and what’s even worse; it was also a bit boring, I checked my watch way too often.

Carol-costumes

But like I said, everything is there. The costumes are striking and especially Blanchett carries them like a true queen. I liked the script, it felt real but it is understated like the whole film. I really didn’t like the cinematography, it is (I guess) suitable for the era but not to me, it looks dirty and old and nah, I didn’t like it at all, especially because I’ve just seen The Danish Girl (I saw these two in a row) that I liked to look at a lot. On the other hand, I’m very happy that Carter Burwell was nominated for the Oscar, he very much deserves it and the music in the film is suitable and supports the story well and this is his first nominations in the Oscars. But like in the case of The Danish Girl, the performances are THE reason to see Carol. And I guess if you like other films of Todd Haynes, you’ll probably like this one too. I don’t like his films and I should just finally realise it.

Rating: *** (out of 5)

The Oscar Nominations – how did I do and what else went wrong?

The 85th Academy Awards® will air live on Oscar® Sunday, February 24, 2013.It’s been few days and let’s reflect now how I did with my predictions and other thoughts concerning the Oscar nominations 2016.

All in all I did ok. BUT I should never trust my gut feeling or change things during the last couple of days because apparently they will go wrong. I was 75% correct this year. Not my best but not my worst either.

BEST PICTURE I predicted following:

  1. Spotlight
  2. Mad Max Fury Road
  3. Carol
  4. The Martian
  5. The Revenant
  6. The Big Short
  7. Bridge of Spies
  8. Inside Out
  9. Brooklyn
  10. Straight Outta Compton

I got Carol, Inside Out and Straight Outta Compton wrong and left Room out. I’m genuinely surprised by Carol’s omission, I thought it would be shoo-in. I saw Carol tonight and well, I’m not that surprised anymore. I’ll write a review later. I’m glad Room is in, I believe it’s worth of it even though I haven’t seen it yet. And I’m sad Inside Out is out. I still need to see half of the best picture nominees until I can have proper opinion here. HERE you can see all the nominations.

roomthemoviewithbrielarson

BEST DIRECTOR

  1. Mad Max: Fury Road – George Miller
  2. Spotlight – Thomas McCarthy
  3. Carol – Todd Haynes
  4. The Revenant – Alejandro Gonzales Iñarritu
  5. The Martian – Ridley Scott

I had two wrong ones; Ridley Scott and Todd Haynes. I’m a bit surprised of both but especially Scott, he should be there but it’s nice that Lenny Abrahamson of Room got in and well, now, after seeing The Big Short last night, I’m very happy that Adam McKay got in. The film is great!

BEST ACTOR

  1. The Martian – Matt Damon
  2. Steve Jobs – Michael Fassbender
  3. The Revenant – Leonardo DiCaprio
  4. The Danish Girl – Eddie Redmayne
  5. Trumbo – Bryan Cranston

bale

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

  1. Bridge of Spies – Mark Rylance
  2. Creed – Sylvester
  3. Beasts of No Nation – Idris Elba
  4. 99 Homes – Michael Shannon
  5. Spotlight – Mark Ruffalo

The best actor I got 5/5 and with supporting 3/5. I’m sad that they passed Idris Elba, the Academy should have included him. Well, I love Hardy and Bale who got in instead, so can’t complain a lot. And after seeing Bale’s performance yesterday, well, he’s fantastic in The Big Short. Then again, isn’t he always?

BEST ACTRESS

  1. Carol – Cate Blanchett
  2. The Danish Girl – Alicia Vikander
  3. 45 Years – Charlotte Rampling
  4. Room – Brie Larson
  5. Brooklyn – Saoirse Ronan

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

  1. Carol – Rooney Mara
  2. The Hateful Eight – Jennifer Jason Leigh
  3. Steve Jobs – Kate Winslet
  4. Spotlight – Rachel McAdams
  5. Trumbo – Helen Mirren

With the best actress I got Alicia Vikander wrong and I think that’s wrong. Both, Rooney Mara and Alicia Vikander should be within the leading ladies. Their parts are HUGE! Mara’s even bigger than Blanchett’s… Idiotic. But I like Jennifer Lawrence and she’s great in Joy which to me was generally more enjoyable film than The Danish Girl or Carol. In supporting I had Mirren wrong which I’m glad about. I still need to see Spotlight of those in supporting category but I hope Alicia Vikander will win, she’s extraordinary in The Danish Girl. Review coming later.

BEST SCREENPLAY (original)

  1. The Hateful Eight – Quentin Tarantino
  2. Inside Out – Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve & Josh Cooley
  3. Spotlight – Tom McCarthy & Josh Singer
  4. Bridge of Spies – Matt Charman & Coen brothers
  5. Ex Machina – Alex Garland

BEST SCREENPLAY (adapted)

  1. Carol – Phyllis Nagy
  2. Room – Emma Donoghue
  3. The Martian – Drew Goddard
  4. Steve Jobs – Aaron Sorkin
  5. The Big Short – Charles Randolph & Adam McKay

 In original screenplay category I got 3/5 correct and in adapted 4/5. In the latter I’m hugely amazed that Aaron Sorkin was left out, I have no idea what happened there?! No words for that. I’m also surprised that Tarantino was left out in original category especially because the writing of Straight Outta Compton is a bit clumsy… Oh well. My favourites to win are Inside Out and The Big Short. Any film that has Margot Robbie in a bubble bath should win an Oscar.

margotrobbie_inabubblebath

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY I got 5/5

  • Mad Max Fury Road
  • The Revenant
  • Sicario
  • Carol
  • The Hateful Eight

BEST EDITING was 4/5 The Force Awakens replacing The Martian

  • Mad Max Fury Road
  • The Revenant
  • The Martian
  • Spotlight
  • The Big Short

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN was also 4/5 The Martian replacing Carol which I easily understand now after seeing Carol tonight.

  • Mad Max Fury Road
  • Carol
  • Bridge of Spies
  • The Danish Girl
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST COSTUME DESIGN again 4/5 The Revenant replacing Brooklyn

  • Cinderella
  • Carol
  • Brooklyn
  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Danish Girl

BEST MAKEUP

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • Holmes
  • The Revenant

Here I should have predicted  A 100-year-old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared because it was so “out-there” option. So, 2 out of 3.

madmax_makeup

BEST SCORE

  • Carol – Carter Burwell
  • The Danish Girl – Alexander Desplat
  • The Hateful Eight – Ennio Morricone
  • Inside Out – Michael Giacchino
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens – John Williams

Well, here I had 3/5 and I’m a bit sad that Alexander Desplat is not nominated for The Danish Girl, it’s beautifully composed. And I predicted Giacchino for Inside Out but I’m soooooo much happier that Jóhann Jóhannsson got nominated for Sicario because that is one of my favourite soundtracks of the year. That guy is becoming one of my favourite composers quickly. Yay!

BEST SONG I got 3/5 correct here which is good enough for me as this category is always so tricky. I’m sad for See You Again because it’s a great song. I hope Lady Gaga wins.

  • Spectre – Writings on the Wall
  • The Hunting Ground – Til It Happens To You
  • Youth – Simple Song #3
  • Fifty Shades of Grey – Love Me Like You Do
  • Furious 7 – See You Again

BEST SOUND EDITING

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • The Hateful Eight
  • The Revenant
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens

BEST SOUND MIXING

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • The Martian
  • Bridge of Spies
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  • The Revenant

 In sound editing I had 4/5 missing Sicario and putting The Hateful Eight in. And in mixing I had 5/5. Cool.

BEST VISUAL EFFECTS

  • Mad Max: Fury Road
  • Jurassic World
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens
  • The Martian
  • The Revenant

I missed Ex Machina which I changed back to Jurassic World during the last day. I should never do that!

star-wars-mad-max-revenant

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE I got one wrong. That was Theeb from Jordan that won over Labyrinth of Lies from Germany. Not so surprising actually.

  • Son of Saul (Hungary)
  • Mustang (France)
  • Embrace of the Serpent (Colombia)
  • Labyrinth of Lies (Germany)
  • A War (Denmark)

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

  • Inside Out
  • Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet
  • Anomalisa
  • The Good Dinosaur
  • The Peanuts Movie

BEST DOCUMENTARY

  • Amy
  • Cartel Land
  • The Look of Silence
  • Best of Enemies
  • Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief

The animated feature category keeps surprising me and I should probably remember that the next year. I also have no opinion here except that I wish Inside Out will win. I got 3/5 also in documentary category. I’m a bit surprised that scientology doc Going Clear didn’t make it… Maybe so many of those Academy members are actually members?

 BEST ANIMATED SHORT I had 4/5, Carface instead of We Can’t Live Without Cosmos

  1. World of Tomorrow
  2. Sanjay’s Super Team
  3. Bear Story
  4. Carface
  5. Prologue

BEST SHORT DOCUMENTARY was also 4/5, Minerita instead of Body Team 12 (I don’t even know why I chose that?)

  1. Claude Lanzmann: Spectres of the Shoah
  2. Last Day of Freedom
  3. Minerita
  4. Chau Beyond the Lines
  5. A Girl in the River

 chaubeyondthelines

BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT

  • Ave Maria
  • Bis Gleich
  • Shok
  • Stutterer
  • Winter Light

In the last category I got two wrong, they were Bis Gleich and Winter Light and the nominees are instead Day One and other German short Everything Will Be Okay (Alles Wird Gut). Again I have no opinion.

That’s it folks. I will continue reviewing the nominees for the next month and write other Oscars stuff. Again, HERE you can see the nominees and later on also my own wishes for the winners and my eventual predictions before the Gala on 28th of February.

The Oscars predictions 2016 #1

The 85th Academy Awards® will air live on Oscar® Sunday, February 24, 2013.

Here we go! My favourite time of the year. The Oscars time!

It’s four days until the announcement of the nominations and I’ll be looking into my predictions every day until 14th. Golden Globes will be aired tonight and we might get some indications who will be the winners but those doesn’t affect to the Oscar nominations as the ballots are already in and no one can change their vote anymore.

We have some indications from critics and guilds and obviously from nominations of Golden Globes and BAFTA awards but thankfully this year the race is quite wide open. There are a lot different winners so far and even more equally good or great films to be nominated. I can’t actually remember when the Oscar season had been this open the last time. Room for surprises.

I still have quite many categories where I keep shifting the contenders back and forth and that’s the reason why I start with the ones that I’ve 95% locked. I also list the ones that have been in my mind and can be dark horses or even quite potential nominees.

59beab0093a534b3b2684597100cdbecBEST ACTOR

  1. The Martian – Matt Damon
  2. Steve Jobs – Michael Fassbender
  3. The Revenant – Leonardo DiCaprio
  4. The Danish Girl – Eddie Redmayne
  5. Trumbo – Bryan Cranston
  6. Black Mass – Johnny Depp
  7. Youth – Michael Caine
  8. Son of Saul – Geza Röhrig

I still wonder a bit if Johnny Depp will make it but I doubt it. He might change the places with Cranston BUT Cranston plays a real life screenwriter from the Hollywood Golden Era. And they just love their own. Plus at least to me he was better and Trumbo in general is a better film than Black Mass. The four others I consider total locks and will be amazed if they are not nominated. And even though it should be DiCaprio’s year, there might be a change to Matt Damon to beat him. We’ll see.

4c1424b851fb52993584fd07f5a5214cBEST ACTRESS

  1. Carol – Cate Blanchett
  2. The Danish Girl – Alicia Vikander
  3. 45 Years – Charlotte Rampling
  4. Room – Brie Larson
  5. Brooklyn – Saoirse Ronan
  6. Max Max: Fury Road – Charlize Theron
  7. Joy – Jennifer Lawrence

I only yesterday changed Alicia Vikander to this category and took JLaw away. I might regret it later but I have a feeling that this is the way it goes this time. I also think there is a slight change for Charlize Theron if younger generation of actresses votes enough for her. I don’t know. I guess some other older generation actress like Maggie Smith or Lily Tomlin could take Rampling’s place but I doubt it. And when it comes to winner, I think it’s Larson’s to loose. But so far I’ve only seen Theron’s work and to me she over-acted, so I can’t really have a proper opinion here. Can’t they just give a nomination for Daisy Ridley? I love her and her character.

BEST SCREENPLAY (original)

  1. The Hateful Eight – Quentin Tarantino
  2. Inside Out – Pete Docter, Meg LeFauve & Josh Cooley
  3. Spotlight – Tom McCarthy & Josh Singer
  4. Bridge of Spies – Matt Charman & Coen brothers
  5. Ex Machina – Alex Garland
  6. Trainwreck – Amy Schumer
  7. Sicario – Taylor Sheridan

insideout1

Well, this one is 100% lock. I loved Trainwreck but I can’t see it getting nomination and I really hope that Ex Machina gets one in this category because it truly deserves it. And I wish Inside Out will win but I think Spotlight will. I hope not. I haven’t even seen it yet but I just love the idea of Inside Out, it’s truly imaginative and for that it should win.

themartian_posterBEST SCREENPLAY (adapted)

  1. Carol – Phyllis Nagy
  2. Room – Emma Donoghue
  3. The Martian – Drew Goddard
  4. Steve Jobs – Aaron Sorkin
  5. The Big Short – Charles Randolph & Adam McKay
  6. Brooklyn – Nick Hornby

I might change my mind with this after seeing Carol, Room and Brooklyn. I will watch them during the next three days but for now this is it. I wasn’t a huge fan of The Martian, it’s witty and fun but nothing spectacular but as big time Buffy fan, I’m also a big time Goddard fan, so I hope he wins. I think all of them have a chance.

Maybe one more category… Let’s see…

madmaxcinematographyBEST CINEMATOGRAPHY

  1. Mad Max Fury Road
  2. The Revenant
  3. Sicario
  4. Carol
  5. The Hateful Eight
  6. The Martian
  7. Bridge of Spies

My favourite category. Bridge of Spies got added about half a minute ago (I just saw it in the cinema, like half an hour ago). I could see it getting nomination even though it wasn’t my favourite kind of cinematography. I can’t wait to see The Revenant, Lubezki is just unbelievably good and already the trailer looks amazing! 360 degrees shots and natural light… I’m quite sure it’ll be my favourite of the year. But I also liked The Hateful Eight and obviously Mad Max too but it’s more about that rapid editing. And Sicario is Deakins, a lot of hard stuff, shots in actual darkness. It’s brutal to look at as it should be consider the subject matter. And Carol looks beautiful though I haven’t seen it yet. But wouldn’t it be cool to “Chivo” to win three in a row?!

That’s all for today. Any thoughts? Do you disagree/agree? Other choices? I’ll be back tomorrow with another categories.

Films of the Week Vol. 11

Yay, I have had this blog for something like 2,5 years and this is Vol. 11?! I’m lazy. Anyway, here we go, couple of films to review. I will probably see something else too this week but let’s just go with these now.Pitch Perfect 2

PITCH PERFECT 2 (2015)

Directed by Elizabeth Banks

Written by Kay Cannon & Mickey Rapkin

Starring Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Hailee Steinfeld & Brittany Snow

Synopsis (IMDb): “After a humiliating command performance at Lincoln Center, the Barden Bellas enter an international competition that no American group has ever won in order to regain their status and right to perform.”

Pitch Perfect 2 is ok. Which is kind of sad as I loved the first part. It was such a great surprise how much I liked it and I wished I’d like the second one as well but it’s kinda meh. It’s not bad but there aren’t any really good songs that you want to go back to like in the original one had. A lot of them. I listened to the soundtrack for a long time and I can still go back to it. And as both parts are about music it should stand out.

I don’t know. I didn’t care about any of the characters. Well, maybe about the guys in Treblemakers but not the girls. I like Anna Kendrick a lot as well as I like Elizabeth Banks a ton, I hope she will continue directing films but I hope they will be better than this. Rebel Wilson and her over-the-top characters are becoming kind of old, don’t you think? In here you have basically none “normal” scenes of her. But there still is something endearing in the film because during the last scene I did find myself crying, so they did get something right, it moved me (not a hard thing to do but at some point I really though I don’t care enough to shed a few tears, in the end, I did).

Pitch Perfect 2

Even though Pitch Perfect continues in the familiar way of the original, it feels more like separate scenes than the first one that indeed was growing up story like this one is pretending to be. Moving on is a hard thing but for some reason PP2 left me feeling like there should have been one part in between. Now it was a bit hard to identify within the situation because time jumps that much ahead from the first part. Anyway, Pitch Perfect is ok.

Rating *** (out of 5)

P.S. I know it’s so fun to make fun of Germans and their accent but really! That again made me feel like I’m watching something set in WWII.

 

the-man-from-u-n-c-l-e

THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. (2015)

Directed by Guy Ritchie

Written by Guy Ritchie, Lionel Wigram, Jeff Kleeman & David C. Wilson (Original series by Sam Rolfe)

Starring Henry Cavill, Armie Hammer, Alicia Vikander & Hugh Grant

Synopsis: “In the early 1960s, CIA agent Napoleon Solo and KGB operative Illya Kuryakin participate in a joint mission against a mysterious criminal organization, which is working to proliferate nuclear weapons.” 

I saw this film about four hours ago. I already almost forgot I saw it. I think that is saying a lot. The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is all about style and less about content. I’ve never been a big fan of Guy Ritchie and this sure didn’t change that.henry cavill hot and shirtless

Henry Cavill looks too good. I annoys me for some reason. I have hard time to concentrate his acting or character because I’m only paying attention to his physics. Yeah, I know, that sounds weird but it’s true. In a scene I just stare at his pecs instead of even thinking what is happening around them. And in this film he wears really nice suits too. Bothering. Armie Hammer’s character here (despite his stupid accent, again!, what is wrong with you people! Especially in this one, he plays a spy, wouldn’t he have perfected his accent? Huh?! Gosh, that makes me angry…) is much more approachable in the way that he feels and looks real. If anyone in this flick. And I can’t get over the fact that Alicia Vikander is a) a very talented actress b) an amazingly beautiful woman c) soon to be an Oscar nominated d) dating Michael Fassbender. I kinda hate her…

Yeah… It looks like my complaints are bit off here. 😀 But really, the film is empty with its content. It’s a bit like the first episode of series, it introduces everyone with a twist and then when you really start being interested in characters the film ends. I do want to know what happens to them next but unfortunately Uncle has made only about 100 000 $ according to Box Office Mojo which means with its 75M production budget that there will not be a sequel. Let’s hope it rallies within streaming services.

The film sure looks good. Just look at these costumes and make-ups and hairstyles and settings etc. Looks great, huh?

Elizabeth Debicki and Henry Cavill in the man from uncle with costumes Costumes in the man from uncle Production setting of the man from uncle in Rome Beautiful Alicia Vikander in The Man from Uncle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And I appreciated it that Russians spoke Russian together like Germans spoke German and Italians Italian. I do appreciate this. But when you watch a film like this in Dutch cinema with Dutch subtitles and don’t speak said language it’s a bit challenging. 😀 Thankfully I speak some German, so I wasn’t totally lost.

Rating: **½ (out of 5)

P.S. Based on the reviews it looks like I should have given more stars to Uncle but the thing is that Pitch Perfect 2 is not that bad, it’s just that the first part was so much better.

The First Look – The Oscars 2016!

The 85th Academy Awards® will air live on Oscar® Sunday, February 24, 2013.

Yay, it’s that time of a year again! Well, at least it starts now with big festivals of autumn. Yes, of course I’m talking about the Oscars. The Oscars season. It stars within ongoing film festivals In Venice and in Telluride, Colorado and continues with Toronto International Film Festival beginning in few days. So, let’s have the first look to the Oscars 2016.

There have been a bunch of eagerly awaited films in line-up of both, Venice Film Festival and Telluride. And the reception has not been bad to most of them.

First out of the oven was Johnny Depp vehicle Black Mass, a gangster story based on true events. Johnny Depp plays Whitey Bulger, a notorious gangster from Boston who ruled the streets back in 70’s. And according to critics, he does it very well (Rotten Tomatoes score atm 100%). So, seems like Johnny-boy is back in contention. The cast in the film is exceptional (well, not really because this year has a massive amount of exceptional casts) including names like Benedict Cumberbatch,  Joel Edgerton, Peter Sarsgaard, Kevin Bacon, Adam Scott, Dakota Johnson, Juno Temple and Corey Stoll. To me it seems like Joel Edgerton might be one to consider in supporting actor category but only time will tell. Other possible nominations include best picture (maybe), cinematography, score (people are hoping to Junkie XL, who score both Black Mass and Mad Max: Fury Road, to get a nomination this year but composers are a hard group to please if you’re not inside already) and most certainly make-up and hair styling. Just look at the look of Depp!

Next one that received solid enough reviews was Suffragette which, I’m very sure, will get Carey Mulligan a nomination if not a win in best actress category. Unfortunately it seems like the script is not strong enough and the whole film suffers because of that. We’ll see. At the moment Rotten Tomatoes score is only 63 % fresh but the subject of the film is so strong it is very hard to ignore. IMDb’s synopsis: “The foot soldiers of the early feminist movement, women who were forced underground to pursue a dangerous game of cat and mouse with an increasingly brutal State.” Let’s see how it goes down in box-office. Possible nominations besides Mulligan: best film, director (Sarah Gavron), supporting actresses (Helena Bonham-Carter and/or Anne-Marie Duff), cinematography, production design, costume design & score composed by always great Alexander Desplat.

The women have strong presence this year. Or those who want to be women like Danish Lili Elbe, the first ever person to have male to female sex reassignment surgery in The Danish Girl. Elbe is played by the last year winner of the best actor, Eddie Redmayne, who will, for sure, gain a nomination again this year. He and his work look amazing. The film is directed by Tom Hooper, helmer of King’s Speech (which he won the best directing) and Les Misérables that gained eight Oscar nominations and won three. So, high expectations again for Mr. Hooper and according to critics (Rotten Tomatoes 86% atm) it’s a solid piece of art house cinema. Apart from nomination to Mr. Redmayne the film could get nominations for best film, director, supporting OR lead actress, depending which category they choose to compete for Danish Alicia Vikander, adapted screenplay, cinematography, production and costume design as well as make-up and hair styling. I could bet on those three last ones that those are basically locks already. And the score is of course another possibility, it’s Desplat competing against himself but then again, the last year he got nominated twice and won for The Grand Budapest Hotel.

And lastly for today and to me, the most importantly, let’s have a look what critics are saying about new Dabby Boyle directed and Aaron Sorkin scripted Steve Jobs film. “An enthralling performance by Michael Fassbender fuels this brilliant, infuriating and richly unconventional take on the life of an American visionary.” –Justin Chang, Variety. “Screenwriter Aaron Sorkin, who’s written about America’s Great Flawed Men with such fire and hyperarticulate pathos that he’s threatened to become one himself, outdoes his work on The Social Network with an even sharper and more savage script.” –David Ehrlich, TimeOut. Soooo, looks like we have a winner here! Or at least I hope so. I’m huge huge fan of Michael Fassbender and I would so like to see him win for the best actor. He’s always so good. And Steve Jobs, despite his reputation, is a hero of mine. Steve Jobs (the movie) is definitely in contention with best actor, best (basically already won) adapted screenplay, film, director, supporting actress (Kate Winslet) and supporting actor (Seth Rogen probably). Cinematography, editing and score have also gotten multiple mentions. I just can’t wait to see this. Hope it delivers.

There were also Netflix’s Beasts of No Nation, Room, Everest and Spotlight that got premieres in Venice or Telluride. I’ll tackle them in the next post. But if you’re interested, here is my updated, very long list of Oscar predictions for 2016.