Oscars 2013

Apologies for the lack of posts lately - I've been terrible at getting round to writing any! I had meant to put up an Oscars predictions post before now, so I'll just include my predictions with the overall winners.

So, the Oscars have been and gone. Tears have been shed, awards have been won, Adele did some singing, and Seth MacFarlane tried to be edgier than he really could be at the Oscars. His presenting was altogether good, incorporating his love-it-or-hate-it style of humour frequently seen on his shows Family Guy and American Dad. His Oscars opening was a skit about Captain Kirk (played by the always glorious William Shatner) informing Seth from the future that his hosting was reviewed horribly, so Seth tries a series of different smaller skits to try and improve his future. MacFarlane is a pretty accomplished singer, so he had no difficulty in incorporating musical skits into his opening, but whether you would find it funny or not ultimately depends on your opinion on Seth's animated shows. However, I feel everyone can appreciate the genius of this little quip.

Watch out Seth, Chris will set his posse on you.

 To which only Robert Downey Jr. really seemed to appreciate:

The always excellent RDJ showing his appreciation.

All in all, the hosting was good this year. The number of musical performances bordered on the level that you could perhaps joke and call this awards show the Tony's, but compared to previous efforts, Seth can hold his head high.

However, nobody cares about the hosting really at the Oscars - here, it's all about bringing him the prizes. As I mentioned previously, I'd meant to have a predictions post up, so I'll run through the awards including my picks as I go. Some of these I won't have much to say at all, so I'll just be posting the winners.

Best Supporting Actor: Christoph Waltz - Django Unchained
My Prediction: Phillip Seymour Hoffman - The Master

I was perhaps a little optimistic here, as The Master was one of those films destined to receive a snub from the Oscars. However, this is a fully deserved win for Christoph Waltz who once again shone in Tarantino's latest. It's crazy to think that less than a decade ago this man had not started in an English-spoken film, and now has two Oscars to his belt. He's going to go on to greater and greater things - expect a Best Actor gong in his future.

Best Animated Short: Paperman
My Prediction: Paperman
Best Animated Short winner, Paperman.

I picked Paperman purely on the grounds that it was created by Disney. I don't know much about any of the films in these categories, but Paperman is a beautiful black and white animation blending hand-drawn and computer generated animation to great effect. It's almost a throwback to film noir, and comes fully recommended.

Best Animated Feature Film: Brave
My Prediction: Brave

Again, I chose this because Pixar are the Academy's darlings in this category. However, this is the year they really shouldn't have won what could potentially be named The Pixar Award for Excellence in Pixar Films, as Brave underperformed in a very strong animation category. Paranorman was a surprisingly good effort, and Disney's Wreck-It Ralph was a highly original love-letter to computer games. Yet once again, Pixar take the award.

Best Cinematography: Life of Pi
My Prediction: Life of Pi
I had predicted Life of Pi because I knew the Academy wouldn't recognise Skyfall's amazing cinematography this year. Roger Deakins constructed each shot of the latest Bond to perfection (the scenes in the skyscraper were beautiful), yet he seems to be the unluckiest man in Hollywood. He's been nominated countless times with no wins. Having said that, Life of Pi is a wonderfully crafted film, and definitely deserves its win.              


Best Visual Effects: Life of Pi
My Prediction: Life of Pi

Life of Pi continued its success at the Oscars with a win for Best Visual Effects, which coincided with my prediction. Really, there could be only one winner in this category. The tiger in Life of Pi looked almost real at times, and some of the scenes at sea were so staggeringly beautiful that they have to be seen to be believed. There was some mild controversy during the acceptance speech of this category, as the visual effects crew were cut off mid-speech after beginning to talk about the appalling state of the visual effects industry. Seems there no room for bad feelings at the Oscars!

Best Costume Design: Anna Karenina 
My Prediction: Les Misérables

Best Make-Up and Hairstyling: Lincoln
My Prediction - The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

I suppose it was naive to assume The Hobbit would pick up any awards, but this is a category where they deserve to. I'm always far more impressed by the effort it takes to makes a group of men look like a group of gruff dwarves than the effort it takes a middle-aged man look like another middle-aged man who happened to be president. Then again, I'm not on the Academy Awards board, so what do I know?

Best Live-Action Short: Curfew
My Prediction: Curfew

Best Documentary Short: Inocente
My Prediction: Mondays at Racine

Best Feature Length Documentary: Searching for Sugar Man
My Prediction: Searching for Sugar Man

Silver magic ships you carry, jumpers, coke, sweet Mary Jane..
This is well deserved. This is brilliant documentary about a folk musician from Detroit called Sixto Rodriguez who inexplicably achieved huge popularity in South Africa, and in the 1990s, a group of South African fans searched for the elusive Sugar Man, Rodriguez. It's a brilliant documentary, and if you've not listened to Rodriguez, I highly recommend it.

Best Foreign Language Film - Amour
My Prediction - Amour

Best Sound Mixing - Les Misérables
My Prediction - Les Misérables

Best Sound Editing - Tied between Skyfall and Zero Dark Thirty
My Prediction - Zero Dark Thirty

This was always going to go to an action film. It's good to see Skyfall finally nabbing a gong!

Best Supporting Actress: Anne Hathaway - Les Misérables
My Prediction: Anne Hathaway - Les Misérables

This was obvious from the moment I saw Les Mis. Hathaway delivered the performance of her career, and received the awards and accolades she clearly deserved for it. Well done Miss Hathaway.

Best Film Editing: Argo
My Prediction: Argo

Best Production Design: Lincoln
My Prediction: Les Misérables

Best Original Score: Mychael Danna - Life of Pi
My Prediction: Mychael Danna - Life of Pi

I'm glad to see Mychael Danna picking up an Oscar. I've been a fan of his scores ever since his work in (500) Days of Summer, and whilst some are grumbling about John Williams not winning again, I'm glad to see Life of Pi winning here for its exotic score.

We will stand tawwwwl, against it awwl...
Best Original Song: Skyfall by Adele - Skyfall
My Prediction: Skyfall by Adele - Skyfall

"Skyfawwww, as it crumbawwwwls". I always feel happy whenever I see Adele winning an awards. She's so humble and down-to-earth that you can't help but feel glad for her. This is the best Bond theme in years and years, so it really couldn't have went to anyone but Adele. However, on the actual night, I think Adele may have been outshone by the fantastic Dame Shirley Bassey performing Goldfinger.

Best Adapted Screenplay: Argo
My Prediction: Life of Pi

Best Original Screenplay: Quentin Tarantino - Django Unchained
My Prediction: Quentin Tarantino - Django Unchained

A well deserved win for the always brilliant Tarantino here. Whilst Django may not have been to the same calibre as Inglourious Basterds or certainly as Pulp Fiction, the dialogue and plot still had that same Tarantino charm and sparkle.

Best Director: Ang Lee - Life of Pi
My Prediction: Steven Spielberg - Lincoln

This was surprising. Considering the man picking up the Best Director awards leading up to the Oscars had been Ben Affleck, and considering he'd been snubbed in this category, I was uncertain as to who'd pick it up. I thought Spielberg might have won a gong for Oscarbait 2013, but I'm very happy to see Ang Lee win an award.

Best Leading Actress: Jennifer Lawrence - Silver Linings Playbook
My Prediction: Jessica Chastain - Zero Dark Thirty

Dammit, I love her.

Again, this was surprising, but refreshing. I was fully expecting Chastain to win here, but to see one of my favourite actresses of the moment pick up an award is brilliant. The fantastic J-Law has been moving up and up since her rise to leading lady status, and this gong is proof of her brilliance. It's perhaps a shame to not see the award go to the youngest or oldest nominees this year, but I'll take a J-Law win regardless.

Best Leading Actor: Daniel Day Lewis - Lincoln
My Prediction: Daniel Day Lewis - Lincoln

NO WAY! HOW DID DANIEL DAY LEWIS WIN AN OSCAR?! HE NEVER DOES THAT. In all fairness though, it's well-deserved. DDL always gives himself fully to everything role he performs, and his performance as Honest Abe is no different. It's just unsurprising, is all.

Best Feature Film: Argo
My Prediction: Lincoln

Well done Ben.

If you had told me at the start of the awards season that Argo would come out with the best success, I wouldn't have believed you at all. Even going into the Oscars with the success it had, I was certain it would receive a massive snub from the Academy. Lincoln seemed perfect Oscar-bait: a period drama about a president starring Daniel Day Lewis. Instead, the winner is a gritty thriller directed and starring Ben Affleck and Walter White from Breaking Bad. And I love it.

- James

(PS. Try and stop watching that J-Law picture. I dare you.)


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