Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Updated Oscar Predictions Pt 1: On the outside, looking in...


It's July, so it's time to update the Oscar predictions for the year.  I wanted to take a minute first to address a few films (ten, to be exact) that I'm flirting with embracing but am still standoffish on for one reason or another.


Son of Saul has fantastic reviews out of Cannes and is said to be a harrowing film that could strike with Oscar, but it's also said to be very harsh and possibly to 'artsy' for the Oscar crowd.  Some have this predicted for a slew of techs as well as an outside chance at Screenplay and even Best Picture, but I'm still not sold.

I Saw the Light is a biopic on Hank Williams, who seems to have had a real baity life, but I'm wondering if this will be enough to break through in a year that seems rather stacked.  A lot of this will hinge on Hiddelston, and at the moment I'm just not certain he'll be able to factor into the race, given the barrage of strong contenders (at least on paper) this year.

Steve Jobs could be HUGE, but it could also be a flop.  There is a gamble with these kinds of films, and the critics are surely going to be ready to tear it apart at the seams if it shows the slightest weakness.  The trailer looks great, but I'm not sold on it being a serious player yet.

The Hateful Eight is a film that, realistically, I should probably bet on, but everything I've read has me less than convinced that it'll be an Oscar player in the slightest.  It's been said that this could be his least accessible film in a while, and while Tarantino has two Oscars, he's not infallible with Oscar.  If this is as harsh and foul as I've heard, I'm thinking Oscar could pass completely.

In the Heart of the Sea is a film like I feel could be huge, but I also feel like it could be regarded as a mere adventure film, and while they moved it to December (which suggests Award's faith), it also stars Hemsworth, who isn't seen as an actor to carry Oscar fare, and the whole CGI whale aspect, while incredible looking in the trailer, could cause this to be not taken as seriously as maybe it should be.

Snowden is a film that MANY are laughing off, but I have this sneaking suspicion that it's going to come out and take Oscar by storm.  I'm laying off predicting it here, simply because the detractors are strong with this one, but if this is seen as some return of form for Stone; I think Oscar could bite in a VERY big way.

Demolition is a film that I initially considered to be an Oscar frontrunner.  I had it predicted for all sorts of Oscar attention back in April, including a few high profile wins.  I'm cooling on that bullishness now.  In fact, I don't have it anywhere in my predictions at the moment.  It's just not being talked about, and early word on the test screenings was that it was very low key and possibly too subtle for Oscar.

The Light Between Oceans could be Cianfrance's big Oscar break, for it surely has the kind of melodramatic themes that Oscar eats up, and it has a killer cast and a director who knows how to work with actors (and these themes), but his last film went nowhere, and despite Harvey in his corner, he couldn't even get a Screenplay nom out of Blue Valentine.  Could this be too indie?

Brooklyn has great reviews.  It has some passionate supporters already in the blogosphere, but part of me is really hesitant to think that Oscar is going to embrace a film about a girl coming of age in 1950's Ireland.  We know how Oscar can be when it comes to female driven stories, and there are a few female stories this year that carry so much heavier significance and weight that this could be seen as too light to make a real impact.

Sicario is one that I'm really so much on the fence with.  It's got decent enough reviews, has a very fine cast and comes from a director on the cusp of breaking through, and yet it could be seen as an action flick with no real chance outside of techs if the year proves to be as bountiful as it seems to be.  I had spur of the moment faith in this right after Cannes...but it has waned considerably since.

That's enough of that for now.  There are others that I'm not wholly embracing as well, but these are the ones that I'm seriously on the cusp of giving some consideration but am holding back for one reason or another.  There looks to be a bounty of great coming out this year, which makes predicting so much harder because...where do you go?  Knowing what Oscar will like should get easier with each passing year, but they throw their fair share of curve-balls enough to make things continuously interesting, at least when it comes to predicting.

14 comments:

  1. Jobs had a screening yesterday and it seems like it's gonna be a major Oscar player, based on the reviews

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    1. Of course this would happen when I'm out of town!

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  2. I have a feeling that Steve Jobs will be very good because Aaron Sorkin is sure to write a great screenplay, it's up to Boyle and the actors to not disappoint him.

    I'm not so sure about Snowden but I guess it will be nice to see Nicholas Cage in a real studio movie for once

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    1. Also, My predictions: https://theblazingreel.wordpress.com/2015/07/17/early-early-oscar-predictions/

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    2. I'm starting to warm to the Steve Jobs predictions.

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    3. I'll check out your predictions soon!

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  3. I hope Snowden takes the Oscars by storm and lets JGL get a Best Actor nom. It probably has a better chance of doing that than The Walk (whose 3D gimmick I think hurts it a bit)

    Jobs will get some play because it's Sorkin.

    In The Heart of the Sea may get some technical noms for visual effects, but I don't expect much else.

    I hope Hateful Eight is good because I love me some Tarantino.

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    1. I have this weird feeling about Snowden...but I'm too chicken to go full boar on predicting it.

      I want In the Heart of the Sea to be amazing because that trailer gave me chills.

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  4. I really hope Steve Jobs does well. One reason is because of Fassbender so he can potentially have the moniker "Academy Award Winner Michael Fassbender". Judging by the trailer, he might have some juicy clip moments. Plus, Aaron Sorkin writing it is a bonus.

    Also, I nominated you for the Liebster Award, which allows bloggers to discover other amazing blogs. Check it out: http://filmguyreviews.blogspot.com/2015/07/liebster-award.html

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    1. First, thanks for the award, buddy! I'll try and get on that soon. Just got home last night, so I'm playing catch up...and I suddenly got a lot busier.

      Second, I'm with you on the Fassbender love. He has a lot of very interesting projects lined up, so soon I think he'll be adding that 'title' to his name.

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  5. Regardless if it really is good or not Jobs may be in the running. I think the one contender to beat all including special effects will be Sharknado 3 with David Hasselhoff

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  6. Of these, I'd say Steve Jobs has the best chance of scoring some major noms, especially Picture, Actor, and Adapted Screenplay.

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