Monday, November 3, 2014

BIFA noms are in!

We can argue all day long about whether or not these matter much, but this is an Awards site, and these are indeed Awards and so I'm going to talk about them.  If anything, Awards like these help raise awareness for smaller films that most of us would never even hear about had they not gotten recognition from bodies like these, so it's worth listing and commenting on.  Also, with the recent trend in Oscar for incorporating the Independent film (or maybe it is the recent trend in Hollywood of exploiting the Independent film and making it...not so Independent), it is a good idea to see where the attention is going, who is getting the traction and where we can see Oscar dipping their hands.

So let's dish!

British Independent Film
Mr. Turner
The Imitation Game

Well, we all know that The Imitation Game is pretty much Harvey Weinstein's #1 horse in the Oscar race, so it is going to snag that BP nom and pretty much a lot of other things.  It's nice to see Calvary getting some attention, even though I haven't seen it to judge for myself (I haven't seen any of these), basically because it is one of my most anticipated, and the reviews were very good.

Logic would say that The Imitation Game will snag this win, but I'm not so sure.  We're about to see a huge snub for it (patience) and it looks like both '71 and Calvary have more widespread support here, so I'm thinking one of them takes it.

Predicting:  '71

Lenny Abrahamson / Frank
Yann Demange / '71
Mike Leigh / Mr. Turner
John Michael McDonagh / Calvary
Matthew Warchus / Pride

So, here is that big snub for The Imitation Game.  Like, how did Tyldum miss here?  I haven't been predicting him for Oscar for a while, but I kind of figured that this would be the start of his run towards an Oscar nom.  It doesn't mean a whole lot, for these are completely different Awards Bodies, and Oscar is far more inclined to dip towards The Imitation Game than anything else in this lineup, but it is still rather shocking considering that Tyldum fits this mold really well.

Predicting:  Mike Leigh

Debut Director (The Douglas Hickox Award)
Yann Demange / '71
Hong Khaou / Lilting
Morgan Matthews / X+Y
Iain Forsyth & Jane Polland / 20,000 Days on Earth
Daniel Wolfe & Matthew Wolfe / Catch Me Daddy

Talk about a bunch of movies I've never heard of and need to see.

Predicting:  Yann Demange

The Imitation Game

So, it's really bizarre to me that Mr. Turner was snubbed here, since I always think of Mike Leigh as pretty much the British Woody Allen in that he's often thought of as a great screenwriter alongside being a great director, and so when his films are recognized, they are recognized HERE before anything else.  But, we get The Imitation Game popping up, so there's that.

Predicting:  The Imitation Game

Lead Actress
Sameena Jabeen Ahmed / Catch Me Daddy
Keira Knightley / The Imitation Game
Gugu Mbatha-Raw / Belle
Cheng Pei / Lilting
Alicia Vikander / Testament of Youth

I have no idea what to think here.  I'm shocked that Knightley is here and not in Supporting, where she is so clearly a frontrunner for the Oscar, so I don't think she'll win here since it isn't a very meaty role and not one that is a clear Lead.  I'd love to have confidence in Mbatha-Raw, since she was astonishing in Belle, but I don't have any faith in her winning considering the film itself has very little love here.

Predicting:  Cheng Pei

Lead Actor
Asa Butterfield / X+Y
Benedict Cumberbatch / The Imitation Game
Brendan Gleeson / Calvary
Jack O'Connell / '71
Timothy Spall / Mr. Turner

I'm a fan of Butterfield, so I'm glad he snagged a nom here, even though I haven't seen the film yet.  He's not going to factor into the win though, not with four real heavyweights in the race.  I'd love for Gleeson to take this, but Cumberbatch is such an Oscar frontrunner that I don't see him losing here, even if Spall is a very British choice and O'Connell is like the biggest breakout of the year.

Predicting:  Benedict Cumberbatch

Supporting Actress
Dorothy Atkins / Mr. Turner
Sienna Guillory / The Goob
Maggie Gyllenhaal / Calvary
Sally Hawkins / X+Y
Imelda Staunton / Pride

First, what the hell is The Goob?  Second, YAY for Maggie Gyllenhaal!!!  I have a feeling that this is going to come down to Atkins and Staunton.  I don't know why, but blind judging, they sound like appropriate choices from this group, especially considering that love for their films.

Predicting:  Dorothy Atkins

Supporting Actor
Michael Fassbender / Frank
Sean Harris / '71
Ben Schnetzer / Pride
Andrew Scott / Pride
Rafe Spall / X+Y

I'm going with a shot in the dark here, but this would be such a cool and inspired win...

Predicting:  Michael Fassbender

Most Promising Newcomer
Sameena Jabeen Ahmed / Catch Me Daddy
Cara Delevinge / The Face of an Angel
Gugu Mbatha-Raw / Belle
Ben Schnetzer / Pride
Liam Walpole / The Goob

Ahmed, Mbatha-Raw and Schnetzer all have nominations in regular categories as well, so I'm assuming that it'll be one of them.  My heart says Mbatha-Raw, and I have a feeling that the current hype for her latest movie, Beyond the Lights, could propel her to the front for this.

Predicting:  Gugu Mbatha-Raw

Achievement in Production
20,000 Days on Earth
Catch Me Daddy
The Goob

We have war sets, the artistic mind of Nick Cave, West Yorkshire at night, contemporary London and the Norfolk ghetto...

Predicting:  '71

Technical Achievement
(for Cinematography)
(for Editing)
Catch Me Daddy 
(for Cinematography)
(for Music)
Mr. Turner 
(for Cinematography)

LOL, I would LOVE to see Frank take this, for the music was so spunky, inspired and just plain cool, but I have a feeling that this will go to a more prestigious film, and while '71 is racking up the nominations, I think it may go a more obvious route.

Predicting:  Mr. Turner

20,000 Days on Earth
Next Goal Wins
Night Will Fall
The Possibilities Are Endless

All of these, aside from The Possibilities Are Endless, are eligable for Oscar this year.  While I have a feeling that, of these, Virunga could be closer to Oscar's taste, it is clear that 20,000 Days on Earth has BIFA's attention.

Predicting:  20,000 Days on Earth

British Short
Emotional Fusebox
Keeping Up with the Joneses
The Karman Line

We'll just have to see at the end of the year if any of these start to factor into the actual Oscar race, but for now, who knows.  Thematically, we have a film about a man who fights a crocodile, a girl who makes videos in a garden shed, a mid-life crisis, a teenage boxer and a mother who starts to levitate.

Predicting:  Slap

International Independent Film
Blue Ruin
Fruitvale Station
The Badadook

Well, who knows with these, but I'd say that Boyhood (being an Oscar BP frontrunner) and Ida (being an Oscar Foreign Film frontrunner) would have the best shot here.

Predicting:  Boyhood

Raindance Award
Flim: The Movie...
Keeping Rosy
The Beat Beneath My Feet

This highlights fresh, young, new talent in Britain.  We have a movie about an Indian director trying to make the transition from Bollywood to Hollywood.  Director Raffaello Degruttola has been acting (albeit in VERY small roles) since the late 90's.  There is also a comedy by Mickey Down, who has done nothing but produce a TV show no one has heard of.  Luna sounds rather fascinating, a story about a couple who lose their child and then isolate themselves on the seaside where the life of their dead child is lived out in fantasy.  The director/writer Dave McKean has worked in the art department for Harry Potter, has directed a few shorts and has his hands in every aspect of his films (scoring, visual effects, editing).  Steve Reeves directs a film about a woman trying to make it in a male dominated world.  Like Mickey Down, he doesn't have much of a resume.  Lastly is John Williams story of a boy who discovers a supposedly dead Rock Star is slumming it next door.  Williams, like McKean, has a lengthy list of films he's directed, worked on, scored and written over the past few years.

In my eyes, it's between Luna and The Beat Beneath My Feet.

Predicting:  Luna

There will be a few more awards handed out, but they aren't determined yet.


  1. I think Tyldum's snub has more to do with him being Swedish. I think they wanted to emphasize British-ness. The Imitation Game should still have a strong chance at winning Best Film.

    1. Eh, but they did nominate Alfredson, who is also Swedish, for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, and they nominated Demange this year (for '71), and he's French.

      I still think that The Imitation Game is in for the long Oscar haul, but Tyldum missing here is really bizarre.

    2. Demange is very much part of the British scene. He grew up in England and has always studied and worked there.

      Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy is more of an exception since it was such a major hit in England.

    3. True, and I can see your point, but The Imitation Game is a huge British pony this year, so Tyldum missing is still very strange.

  2. Most of these I have not heard of but Luna does sound intriguing especially since it happened, in a weird way, to my good friend. many, many yrs ago, when he was in South Africa, he was hitching a ride home (he was a long way away) and a British couple picked him up and on the drive they started talking. They invited him to their place to spend the night. While at their place they started calling him by another name. He asked who that person is and they told him they had a son who recently died and showed him a pic. He looked quite similar to their dead son. he was now getting wary. When they showed him to the room, it was their son's room and they bolted the door behind him. Thankfully there was a window and he escaped in the middle of the night...true story. OK now back on track:)-I would love to have John Travolta read the nominations for promising newcomer:)

    1. That story is insane! I mean, one of those stories that you can't believe and yet almost wish you lived through just so that you could say you did.

      And they should make THAT a movie!

    2. The same trip he slept under a rock crevice and found out he was in the area of major guerrilla activity-the ones with machetes and big ass guns. he was lucky to walk out of there alibe and unnoticed

  3. I'm thinking The Imitation Game still wins Best Film, and I'm predicting Mbatha-Raw will win Best Actress. The Supporting categories are very interesting. I'd love to see Fassy and Gyllenhaal win.

    1. I will LIVE for a Gyllenhaal win. I'm honestly contemplating putting her back in my Supporting ballot...but that means out with Thurman.

      I have no desire to rewatch Nymphomaniac to reconfirm that Thurman deserves a nomination.