Awards Season is officially getting kicked off with the Gotham Award Nominations this morning! Yes, these are kind of like the poor man's Spirit Awards, but this is the start of the season, and there have been many smaller films who have carved a successful Awards run, starting with their nominations here. This is also the place where the beloved performances and films that don't have the legs to carry themselves all the way to Oscar can get some recognition. So, while we can't learn a whole lot from these nominations, we can at least bask in some of their inspired choices.
Let's take a look:
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Love is Strange
Under the Skin
I've only seen two of these so far, Under the Skin and The Grand Budapest Hotel. I really liked both, but absolutely LOVED Under the Skin. One of the most rewarding and thought provoking films I've seen in a very long time. I don't think it'll win here. Oscar is bound to nominate two of these, Boyhood and Birdman, with an outside chance that The Grand Budapest Hotel gets a late surge and manages a surprise Best Picture nom, but as the end of the year is shaping up, I'm just not seeing it happening. The buzz, while there, is not sustaining as long as I expected it to.
Predicted Winner: Boyhood*. Birdman may prove to be a real Oscar threat, especially if the passion ignites more in the next coming months, but Boyhood feels like a real winner here.
*Last year I predicted 12 Years a Slave to win, and it lost to Inside Llewyn Davis.
Bill Hader / The Skeleton Twins
Ethan Hawke / Boyhood
Oscar Isaac / A Most Violent Year
Michael Keaton / Birdman
Miles Teller / Whiplash
I've seen none of these performances, so I can't really judge them on their quality. I love how I had no idea what The Skeleton Twins was and then it came, got a slew of amazing reviews, became this little film that everyone loved and then left and now it is picking up nominations. Like, who saw this coming? Also, where the HELL is Ralph Fiennes? Oscar is going to nominate and most likely award Keaton, and I think that Hawke is looking really secure for a Supporting nomination, but I think there is a clear winner here.
Predicted Winner: Michael Keaton*. His reviews and narrative at this point seem too high to beat. I have a strong feeling he's going to steamroll through Awards Season, taking in everything.
*Last year I predicted Ejiofor, who lost to Oscar winner McConaughey.
Patricia Arquette / Boyhood
Gugu Mbatha Raw /
Belle Beyond the Lights
Julianne Moore / Still Alice
Scarlett Johansson / Under the Skin
Mia Wasikowska / Tracks
two, Raw and one, Johansson, and while both were exquisite, Johansson was on another level. This seems like the perfect place for Moore to start her Oscar run, but last year I correctly predicted that Larson was going to take this over Blanchett and I wonder if that may repeat here, where someone else takes this over Moore. The one thing Moore does have working in her favor is that Still Alice feels far more independent than Blue Jasmine did.
Predicted Winner: Julianne Moore*. As much as she feels like a movie star, and they don't often reward movie stars, no one else here feels like a winner.
*Like I said, I was right last year in predicting Larson.
Point and Shoot
I don't really know anything about these, to be honest, but I know that citizenfour has a ton of buzz right now.
Predicted Winner: citizenfour*, kind of by default.
*I correctly predicted The Act of Killing to take this last year, based also on the current buzz and my lack of knowledge on the category.
Riz Ahmed / Nightcrawler
Joey King / Wish I was Here
Jenny Slate / Obvious Child
Tessa Thompson / Dear White People
Ella Coltrane / Boyhood
Macon Blair / Blue Ruin
I have only seen Slate, who was astonishing, but really no one here has any chance at Oscar, so trying to wade through who would best fit the mold of winner is a tad difficult. Last year, Michael B. Jordon, who had a ton of Oscar buzz around his marvelous performance, took this. This year, there isn't Oscar buzz to work off of. Slate has great reviews, Thompson has a lot of passionate supporters and Coltrane has a very unique narrative. The others...we'll see.
Predicted Winner: Jenny Slate*. This just feels like the type of performance that probably just missed out in the actual Actress category, and so it will probably win here rather easily.
*Last year I predicted Nyong'o, but she lost of Jordon. In my defense, I said it was between the two, so I was half right, sort of.
Ana Lily Amirpour / A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
James Ward Byrkit / Coherence
Dan Gilroy / Nightcrawler
Eliza Hittman / It Felt Like Love
Justin Simien / Dear White People
I've only even heard of two of these, so this is a gamble to predict.
Predicted Winner: Justin Simien*. I don't know, but I keep hearing about Dear White People, so I have a feeling it could wind up being a victor here.
*Last year I predicted Coogler, and I was correct.
There is also a special Ensemble Award, which is going to Foxcatcher.
Alright, so here it is, for now. I am still working up how I want to construct my Awards Tally Page for this season, so it isn't up yet and I'm not sure when it will be. I am currently brainstorming how I want to improve it from last year. Once it is up, I'll post it and add these to it, obviously.