For a big movie buff like me, the Oscars are the big game night — the Superbowl, the World Cup Final, Wrestlemania and the Presidential Debate all wrapped into one. It’s Hollywood’s most celebrated annual event, where white people get famous (had to say it), gender income disparities get revealed, controversial political statements are made, Meryl Streep wins something and Leonardo DiCaprio wins nothing. Yes, the system may be biased and some people may question it’s integrity but then again can art ever judged with objective fairness?
Say what you want to, the Oscars are still fun to watch (especially now that people aren’t allowed to belch out those boring speeches) and are fun to predict. So before Chris Rock starts cracking jokes about #oscarssowhite, I thought I’d spend a moment here to publicly profess my predictions and start a friendly betting game with my movie fanatic buddy, Udit. Btw, I have another friendly betting game with another movie fanatic buddy (Tim) at http://challenge.oscar.com/.
The Others (aka Categories that no one cares about)
Okay, I was a bit harsh there, but these are award categories that are actually important, but aren’t the hype-generating mainstream ones.
Foreign Language Film — Son of Saul (Neither Udit nor I have seen this movie, but the general buzz informs us that this is going to clinch the title)
Documentary Feature — Amy (Because, it’s directed by Asif Kapadia, the guy who made Senna \m/)
Documentary Short, Short Film, Short Animated Film — Honestly, I don’t have any informed opinions here.
The “Technical” Categories (aka Categories that no one understands)
Okay, that was an exaggeration, but these categories are harder to assess by the untrained general public (ie me). Overall, it does looks like Mad Max will sweep this section clean. Why? Well, it was probably the most technically-rich film of 2015 (in terms of sound, color, costumes and makeup). And it had that fire slinging guitar dude. Aww yeah!
Sound Mixing, Sound Editing — Mad Max (Udit and I both agree on this)
Production Design — Mad Max (clear, clear winner…or at least that’s what both of us think)
Makeup & Hairstyling, Costume Design — Mad Max (Did I talk about that Guitar dude already?)
Visual Effects — Star Wars (I mean, Star Wars has to win something, right?)
Music (aka Categories where everyone has an opinion)
Original Score — Hateful Eight (OHMYGOSH! What a beautiful movie score! Both of us agree that this is a clear, clear winner.)
Original Song — Spectre (Great song. Both of us agree. But I’m not entirely sure whether this will clinch it.)
Writing (aka The only categories I truly care about)
Adapted Screenplay — This is where Udit and I differ. While I think it’s going to be The Big Short (Such a clever, witty, profound, heart-warming rendition of Michael Lewis’ book), he thinks it’s going to be Room.
Original Screenplay — Spotlight
Cinematography — The Revenant (I would bet my entire savings on this. I don’t think I have seen camerawork of this caliber this year, or EVER, for that matter)
Film Editing — The Revenant (Both of us agree on this. While I think there is tough competition for this — Spotlight and the Big Short were really well-edited, but since The Revenant is going to win Best Picture, it sorta has to win this one)
The biggest question we are all asking ourselves is this — will we be able to continue the Leo memes after these Oscars…?
Actor in a supporting role — Sylvester Stallone (I had never imagined that Stallone would win an Oscar at this moment in his career, but he’s the crowd favorite right now)
Actress in a supporting role — Udit and I are split on this. While Udit thinks it’s going to be Kate Winslet, I think it’s going to be Alicia Vikander (the academy loves upcoming stars for supporting roles)
Actor in a lead role — Leonardo DiCaprio (Yes! It’s happening. For real!)
Actress in a lead role — Brie Larson (Clear winner, I think)
Animated Film — Inside Out (No brainer here)
Director — Alejandro González Iñárritu (Having embarked on and executed such an insane project deserves an Oscar)
Picture — The Revenant (Yup, we are all in agreement on this one!)