Friday, March 5, 2010

~Jake’s Official 2010 Oscar Predictions~

Well I’ve seen about as many nominees as I can see, so it’s time to give my final winner predictions. For those wondering, in my nominations predictions I went 81/116, roughly 70%. That’s good but not great and I’d like to be a little higher in my winner predictions, so here we go.

Best Live-Action Short Film
Will Win: “The New Tenants”
Should Win: “The New Tenants”
Snubbed: N/A

For the second year in a row I was able to see all five of the nominees, and I feel that “The New Tenants” is definitely the strongest of the bunch. The witty back-and-forth banter and unexpected pathos should be enough to win over voters.

Best Animated Short Film
Will Win: “Logorama”
Should Win: “Logorama”
Snubbed: N/A

The sheer audaciousness of “Logorama” should carry it to a victory, though I wouldn’t be surprised to see Nick Park grab another award for the latest Wallace and Gromit adventure “A Matter of Loaf and Death.”

Best Documentary Short Subject
Will Win: “The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant”
Should Win: N/A
Snubbed: N/A

Unfortunately I was not able to see any of the documentary shorts this year. “The Last Truck” seems timely and that’s really all I’m basing my guess on.

Best Documentary Feature
Will Win: “The Cove”
Should Win: “The Cove”
Snubbed: “Facing Ali”

“The Cove” has cleaned up the precursor awards and with good reason – it’s a film of stunning power and heartbreaking beauty.

Best Foreign Language Film
Will Win: “The White Ribbon”
Should Win: N/A
Snubbed: N/A

I haven’t seen any of these yet, but the local art theater I volunteer at is bringing “White Ribbon,” “Un Prophete,” and “Ajami” in the coming weeks so I will get to see some of them soon. “Ribbon” seems to have the most name value, but as we saw last year that doesn’t always translate to victory. I really wouldn’t be surprised to see any of them win.

Best Visual Effects
Will Win: “Avatar”
Should Win: “Avatar”
Snubbed: “2012”

All other films’ Visual Effects can bow before that of “Avatar.” While many will argue its Best Picture merits, if any other film wins this category it’s a crock.

Best Sound Editing
Will Win: “Avatar”
Should Win: “Avatar”
Snubbed: “Invictus”

“Avatar” just seems like one of those movies that will sweep the big three audio/visual categories, especially since the aural effects were such a big part of the movie.

Best Sound Mixing
Will Win: “Avatar”
Should Win: “Avatar”
Snubbed: “Moon”

“Avatar” just seems like one of those movies that will sweep the big three audio/visual categories, especially since the sound was such a big part of the movie. I wouldn’t be surprised to see “Hurt Locker” take this one, and if it does that means there’s a lot of love for it and its Best Picture chances get even better. But still, look for “Avatar” to take this one.

Best Makeup
Will Win: “Star Trek”
Should Win: “Il Divo”
Snubbed: “The Road”

“Star Trek” is the highest profile nominee, and since it’s going to lose its other three nominations to “Avatar” this seems like the only place to honor the movie. I say “Il Divo” should win because I really liked the movie, but really none of these three I thought were all that impressive as far as makeup. “The Road” would have been a much better nominee.

Best Costume Design
Will Win: “The Young Victoria”
Should Win: “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus”
Snubbed: “Sherlock Holmes”

Period pieces like “The Young Victoria” tend to do well in this category, and for good reason. “Victoria” does a great job, but the costumes in “Parnassus” were a little more out-there, and honestly there are dozens of movies that look a lot like “Victoria” from a costume standpoint.

Best Art Direction
Will Win: “Avatar”
Should Win: “Avatar”
Snubbed: “A Serious Man”

Some may complain that it was all done with computers, but the floating mountains and the multitude of otherworldly creations dreamed up by the “Avatar” team deserve some love.

Best Cinematography
Will Win: “The Hurt Locker”
Should Win: “The Hurt Locker”
Snubbed: “Moon”

Odd as it may sound, this category could be a good predictor for who will win Best Picture. Both “Avatar” and “Hurt Locker” are strong candidates here, but watch out for a “Basterds” upset too. I’m going with “Hurt Locker” but I’m certainly not confident about it.

Best Editing
Will Win: “The Hurt Locker”
Should Win: “The Hurt Locker”
Snubbed: “(500) Days of Summer”

Like cinematography, this one could be an indicator for Best Picture, but I think the odds are much more in “Hurt Locker’s” favor because a great deal of the tension was created through the editing. If “Avatar” pulls off the win here, look out.

Best Original Song
Will Win: “The Weary Kind (Theme from Crazy Heart),” “Crazy Heart”
Should Win: “The Weary Kind (Theme from Crazy Heart),” “Crazy Heart”
Snubbed: “Smoke Without Fire,” “An Education”

I would be extremely shocked if anything but “Weary Kind” takes the award here. It’s a song from a movie about a singer, starring the man who’s going to win Best Actor. Bet on this one.

Best Original Score
Will Win: “Up”
Should Win: “Up”
Snubbed: “A Single Man”

Pixar does pretty well in this category, and the same composer won two years ago for “Ratatouille,” and the music of “Up” is great. Once again, if “Hurt Locker” or “Avatar” wins, their Best Picture chances improve.

Best Adapted Screenplay”
Will Win: “Up in the Air”
Should Win: “Up in the Air”
Snubbed: “State of Play”

I had a hard time choosing Should Win between “Air” and “Education,” both of which are so great. I’m not sure how “District 9” got in here, but “Precious” is a good pick and “In the Loop” is an inspired nomination, kudos to the Academy for recognizing it. However this is the only realistic chance “Up in the Air” has to take an award, so it should win this one handily.

Best Original Screenplay
Will Win: “Inglourious Basterds”
Should Win: “Inglourious Basterds”
Snubbed: “The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus”

I love all five nominees here – “The Hurt Locker,” “Basterds,” “The Messenger,” “A Serious Man,” and “Up.” Any of them could win and I would be happy (particularly “Serious Man”), but Tarantino has won here before, and throwing the history books out the window to write this revenge tale shouldn’t go unnoticed. If “Locker” pulls this one out, Best Picture looks really good.

Best Supporting Actress
Will Win: Mo’Nique, “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire”
Should Win: Mo’Nique, “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire”
Snubbed: Samantha Morton, “The Messenger”

Mo’Nique has been cleaning up precursor awards, and any derailment of that train would be a huge shock. Her last scene in the movie is as good of a scene as any actor pulled off this year.

Best Supporting Actor
Will Win: Christoph Waltz, “Inglourious Basterds”
Should Win: Christoph Waltz, “Inglourious Basterds”
Snubbed: Christian McKay, “Me and Orson Welles”

Much like his female counterpart in the supporting categories, Waltz has been a nearly unstoppable force of awards momentum this season. He’s hilarious, scary, devious, vile, and everything in between. And he does it in four languages. When I wrote my short review of the movie back in August, I included the tag line “Give This Man An Oscar” under a picture of Waltz. I’m so glad that’s about to come true. I’m a little disappointed Christian McKay didn’t get a nomination for his riveting portrayal of Orson Welles, especially since Damon was good but not great in “Invictus,” but they all take a backseat to Waltz anyway.

Best Actress
Will Win: Sandra Bullock, “The Blind Side”
Should Win: Carey Mulligan, “An Education”
Snubbed: Penelope Cruz, “Broken Embraces”

It’s a shame that just because her movies made over $400 million that Sandra Bullock is going to win an Oscar. “The Blind Side” is a perfectly enjoyable film and Bullock’s performance is good, but it just never felt Oscar Good. Carey Mulligan was the standout of the category for me, but Gabourey Sidibe of “Precious” was almost equally as impressive – both were making their debuts in leading roles. Former winners Helen Mirren and Meryl Streep were their usual great selves (Streep’s Julia Child was a particular joy to watch), but they all bow to the almighty dollar of Bullock. Cruz was nominated in Supporting Actress, but her real best performance was in Pedro Almodovar’s “Broken Embraces.” Emily Blunt (“The Young Victoria”), Abbie Cornish (“Bright Star”), Alison Lohman (“Drag Me to Hell”), and Melanie Laurent (“Inglourious Basterds”) would all have been more fitting nominees than Bullock.

Best Actor
Will Win: Jeff Bridges, “Crazy Heart”
Should Win: George Clooney, “Up in the Air”
Snubbed: Michael Stuhlbarg, “A Serious Man”

This was a classic heart versus head battle for me. I love Jeff Bridges and his work in “Crazy Heart” is really very good. He’s long overdue for an award, and it seems to be his time. I have no problem with him winning the award. But Clooney’s work in “Up in the Air” is a performance that years from now will be looked at as one of the great, iconic performances of its day. Jeremy Renner and Colin Firth did outstanding work as well; Renner could be a dark horse upset, and Firth was at one-time the front runner. Morgan Freeman was his usual excellent self as Nelson Mandela in “Invictus,” but Michael Stuhlbarg gave the finest performance of the year in “A Serious Man” and didn’t even get a nomination and would have been a much better pick than Freeman.

Best Director
Will Win: Kathryn Bigelow, “The Hurt Locker”
Should Win: Kathryn Bigelow, “The Hurt Locker”
Snubbed: Joel Coen and Ethan Coen, “A Serious Man”

Whatever happens in Best Picture, Kathryn Bigelow will win Best Director for her pulse-pounding “Hurt Locker.” She will become the first woman to ever win in this category, and it’s well deserved. She’s won almost every major precursor except the Golden Globe (and who the hell is the Hollywood Foreign Press Association anyway?) and anyone else, even the King of the World, winning here, would be a huge upset. This is a great lineup of nominees, though I would have switched out Lee Daniels for “Precious” with former winners the Coen Brothers for their understated work on “A Serious Man.” Quentin Tarantino and Jason Reitman should both have their day, but it just won’t be March 7, 2010.

Best Animated Feature
Will Win: “Up”
Should Win: “Up”
Snubbed: “Ponyo”

I loved all four of the nominees I’ve seen from this category (the unreleased in the U.S. “Secret of Kells” I have not seen), but “Up” is my favorite movie of the year, period. It’s Pixar, and it’s nominated for Best Picture as well, so it would be quite mind boggling if it did not win.

Will Win: “The Hurt Locker”
Should Win: “Up”
Snubbed: “The Messenger”

I don’t see a rule stating that a movie can’t be both the best animated film of the year and the best overall film of the year, but since that seems to be an unofficial rule, “Up” is out. “A Serious Man” and “District 9” have their supporters, but likely not enough to carry them to victory. The victory for “The Blind Side” and “An Education” is simply the nomination. That leaves us with the “true five” nominees – the films that also got nominations for Best Director. “Precious” will get its award in the Best Supporting Actress category; many named it One Of the best movies of the year, but very few had it at the top. “Up in the Air” may have been a frontrunner at one point, but it just wasn’t flashy enough to stay in the race for the long haul, which is a real shame since it was my second favorite movie of the year. “Inglourious Basterds” is a long shot dark horse, but Harvey Weinstein is behind it, and he’s pulled off miracles before. That leaves two dogs in the fight, the two most nominated films with nine apiece, “The Hurt Locker” and “Avatar.” Like I said throughout, the preliminary awards could be great indicators of how this will ultimately turn out. The disparity between the films is tremendous: “Locker” made just $12 million in domestic box office but has taken most of the critical awards; “Avatar” has made over $700 million in domestic box office, and may have changed the way movies are made. Hollywood likes to vote for the big picture, which is certainly “Avatar,” but there’s just something about “The Hurt Locker” that’s hard to shake.

Predicted Winner Tallies

UP – 2

Check back after the awards to see how I did!


  1. Often when the Oscar noms come out I will get on the internet and see if I can find the short films. This year all I could find for the New Tenants was a trailor. Really? A trailor? For a short film?

  2. Try this -