What a boring year for movies. The ten films nominated for Best Picture are uninspiring, and the annual shindig – the 84th Annual Academy Awards – seems prepped for a showdown between Hugo and The Artist, with the overrated Martin Scorsese drama poised to rake up in the technical categories and The Artist to more deservingly win the bigger prizes. There are a few interesting categories, but I’ll be more interested to see if host Billy Crystal can overcome the inevitable stale jokes that have plagued the Oscars for the last several years.
UPDATE: We’ve made note of which categories we predicted correctly. The final tally was 17 of 24. It should be noted that at the Oscar party I attended (hosted by ShouldISeeIt.net‘s Michael Ward), I forgot/second-guessed myself and got 15 of 24 correct. The full list of Oscar winners can be found here.
Here are my predictions for the Academy Awards:
- Best Picture – The Artist (CORRECT)
In a year with bland nominations, The Artist stands out for many reasons. Gimmicky, yes, but extremely good gimmicky, and Oscar voters love that. The Descendants could sneak in as it has earned more money than half of the nominees combined, but reception to it has been lukewarm. As long as Hugo doesn’t win, I’ll be happy.
- Best Director – Michael Hazanavicius, The Artist
Martin Scorsese could win this, but Hazanavicius should be rewarded for doing something truly bold: a silent film.
- Best Actor – Jean Dujardin, The Artist
I am not hearing buzz for anyone else.
- Best Actress – Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
She deserves to win, and it’s been 30 years since she last got to walk onto stage. Viola Davis has a strong chance at winning, too, though frankly I don’t remember a damn thing about her performance in The Help.
- Best Actor in a Supporting Role – Christopher Plummer, Beginners
This category is tough, as no one stands out. Moneyball was the only financial success of the five films nominated, but Jonah Hill doesn’t stand the chance. So I’ll give the honors to Christopher Plummer.
- Best Actress in a Supporting Role – Octavia Spencer, The Help
This category is also filled with less than stellar options, but Octavia Spencer looks like the safest choice.
- Best Original Screenplay – Midnight in Paris
I wasn’t blown away by this movie like many were, but it’s the only movie that really stands a chance.
- Best Adapted Screenplay – The Descendants
Moneyball has a chance, but Aaron Sorkin won last year. Alexander Payne will be rewarded instead.
- Best Foreign Picture – In Darkness (WRONG)
This category is always ridiculously hard to predict, and it doesn’t hurt that I’ve only seen two of the five nominated. A Separation is by far the most obvious choice, which means it probably won’t win. In Darkness, on the other hand, has a very Oscar-friendly theme: persecuted Jews during World War II.
- Best Documentary Picture – Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory
Another hard-to-predict category, Undefeated stands a chance, but Paradise Lost 3 seems hard to beat.
- Best Animated Picture – Rango
Rango was an awesome animated movie and deserves to win.
- Best Art Direction – Hugo
Unless The Artist sweeps, Hugo has this category locked.
- Best Cinematography – Hugo
I’d love to see The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo win something, but Hugo will win this one, too.
- Best Costume Design – Hugo
The Artist could take this one, but once again, Hugo will receive the technical love.
- Best Film Editing – The Artist
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo deserves to win, but a win for The Artist will be indicative of greater things to come.
- Best Makeup – The Iron Lady
Aside from Meryl Streep, the best part about the movie is the incredible makeup work to make Meryl Streep look like an old British woman.
- Best Original Score – The Artist
The only sounds in The Artist is the score, and that is enough.
- Best Original Song – The Muppets
This category is a mess, but it’ll be shocking if The Muppets don’t win.
- Best Sound Mixing – Hugo
Nothing to say here.
- Best Sound Editing – Hugo
War Horse actually has a chance in this category, but I’ll also give this one to the Martin Scorsese yawner.
- Best Visual Effects – Rise of the Planet of the Apes
With an exception to Hugo, the four other nominated movies have absolutely incredible special effects. Rise of the Planet of the Apes stands out from the rest for its blending of CGI and reality, and as penance for not nominating Andy Serkis for his performance.
- Shorts (GUESSED 1 of 3 CORRECTLY)
I’m not even going to try to predict the winners for the three short categories. I haven’t seen them, don’t plan to see them and even if I did, the ones I liked would not be chosen.
View a full list of the Academy Award winners and nominees.