Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Eimer's 2012 Academy Award Picks

First off, let me just say that no longer do I vote with my heart for these awards – because judging by past results - here, here and here - I’m always wrong.

 
However, after reading Freakonomics last year, I decided to take a statistical approach to solve the Oscar’s awards conundrum.

 
And, judging by last year’s17-7 record, I would say it worked.

 
So, with heart no longer hanging on my sleeve and tucked firmly behind my rib cage, I give to you – my loyal reader - my picks for the 2012 Academy Awards…

 
BEST PICTURE
  • War Horse
  • THE ARTIST
  • Moneyball
  • The Descendants
  • The Tree of Life
  • Midnight in Paris
  • The Help
  • Hugo
  • Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close
Eimer Note: Haven’t seen The Artist, yet (in all honestly I've only seen five of the best picture nominees). However, it just seems to me this is the one to lose. Personally, I loved Moneyball, The Descendants and Midnight in Paris. But, I’m leaning towards The Artist. And what's with Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close being nominated? Where's 50/50!

 
BEST ACTRESS
  • Glenn Close, Albert Nobbs
  • Rooney Mara, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
  • VIOLA DAVIS, THE HELP
  • Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
  • Michelle Williams, My Week With Marilyn
Eimer Note: I hear Meryl Streep knocked it out of the park in The Iron Lady. But Viola Davis is getting much deserved praise for her role in The Help. Plus, she won every other award out there including a coveted SAG award.

 
BEST ACTOR
  • Demian Bichir, A Better Life
  • GEORGE CLOONEY, THE DESCENDANTS
  • Jean Dujardin, The Artist
  • Gary Oldman, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
  • Brad Pitt, Moneyball
Eimer Note: I’m going for Clooney to upset the favorite Jean Dujardin. Although I thought Pitt did a fantastic job in Moneyball, Clooney did an amazing job. In fact, I can’t wait to see this film again.

 
SUPPORTING ACTRESS
  • Berenice Bejo, The Artist
  • Jessica Chastain, The Help
  • Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids
  • Janet McTeer, Albert Nobbs
  • OCTAVIA SPENCER, THE HELP
Eimer Note: Although it would be nice to see Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids) pull in the gold, I’m going with Octavia Spencer for The Help. She already pulled in the SAG award, plus The Help is a good, wholesome story. Can’t see anyone else winning this one.

 
SUPPORTING ACTOR
  • Kenneth Branagh, My Week With Marilyn
  • Jonah Hill, Moneyball
  • Nick Nolte, Warrior
  • CHRISTOPHER PLUMMER, BEGINNERS
  • Max von Sydow, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close
Eimer Note: I’m all for Jonah Hill getting this award. But he won’t. My vote is for Plummer who is a veteran screen actor that managed to get a plum role as an older, dying father who comes out of the closet after his wife dies. Very touching movie by the way.

 
BEST DIRECTOR
  • MICHEL HAZANIVICIUS, THE ARTIST
  • Alexander Payne, The Descendants
  • Martin Scorsese, Hugo
  • Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris
  • Terrence Malick, The Tree of Life
Eimer Note: In the past 63 years, only six directors who received the Director's Guild's feature film award have NOT won the Academy Award. So, the odds have it for The Artist director.

 
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
  • Michel Hazanivicius, The Artist
  • Kristen Wiig and Annie Mumolo, Bridesmaids
  • WOODY ALLEN, MIDNIGHT IN PARIS
  • J.C. Chandor, Margin Call
  • Asghar Farhadi, A Separation
Eimer Note: Damn, do I wish 50/50 was on this list. What a pity, because it was a great fucking film with great acting and great direction. Check it out. That said, I’m going with Woody Allen for Midnight In Paris. The reason, it’s a movie that celebrates writing and the writer’s of our past. Plus, it’s well acted and, well, original!

 
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
  • Alexander Payne, Nat Faxon and Jim Rash, The Descendants
  • John Logan, Hugo
  • George Clooney, Beau Willimon and Grant Heslov, The Ides of March
  • Steven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin and Stan Chervin, Moneyball
  • Bridget O'Connor and Peter Straughan, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Eimer Note: I’m going with The Descendants. Usually, the runner-up best picture candidate gets one of these awards. And, I’m thinking, they’ll honor this Payne’s film with this award rather than best picture (which it probably deserves).

 
BEST FOREIGN FEATURE
  • Bullhead
  • Footnote
  • In Darkness
  • Monsieur Lazhar
  • A Separation

Eimer Note: Everyone that has seen A Separation, has loved it. Also, it has made almost every film critics 2011 top-ten list. Again, I haven’t seen it, but I feel the wave is riding for A Separation.

 
BEST ANIMATED FEATURE
  • A Cat in Paris
  • Chico & Rita
  • Kung Fu Panda 2
  • Puss in Boots
  • Rango

Eimer Note: I’m still going to have to go with Rango on this one. Puss in Boots was good, not great. Kung Fu Panda 2 was also entertaining, but not best animated feature worthy. Like I said, in my review, I thought Rango was just so damn original. Plus, how can you go wrong with a hark back to the man, they myth Hunter S. Thompson.

 
ART DIRECTION
  • The Artist
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
  • Hugo
  • Midnight in Paris
  • War Horse

Eimer Note: Although I’m sure Hollywood will probably eat up The Artist’s art direction, I’m going to have to go with Hugo on this one. By the looks of the film (which, again, I haven’t seen) it just seems to exude fantastic art direction. However, truth be told, Harry Potter was pretty damn interesting as well. I could see the Academy honoring the final Harry Potter film as well. But my heart is going with Hugo.

 
CINEMATOGRAPHY
  • The Artist
  • The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
  • Hugo
  • The Tree of Life
  • War Horse

Eimer Note: Although I have mixed feelings about Tree of Life, I thought it was a beautifully shot film. Also, Emmanuel Lubezki (who shot Children of Men, The New World and Sleep Hollow) won the ASC (American Society of Cinematographer’s) award a couple weeks ago. My personal favorite would be for Dragon Tattoo to win. However, I’m sticking to the statistics this year.

 
COSTUME DESIGN
  • Anonymous
  • The Artist
  • Hugo
  • Jane Eyre
  • W.E.

Eimer Note: I think period pieces W.E., Jane Eyre and Anonymous will knock each other out of the competition. Which leaves us with HUGO and THE ARTIST. I'll probably have to go with The Artist. However, HUGO did have a great call-back scene to George Melies' A Trip to The Moon, which had pretty spectacular costumes. Shit, I just changed my own mind. I'm going with HUGO.

 
DOCUMENTARY FEATURE
  • Hell and Back Again
  • If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front
  • Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory
  • Pina
  • Undefeated

Eimer Note: So, one of my favorite documentaries of all time, Afghanistan-military doc Restrepo, failed to win best documentary last year. To make up for this injustice, I’m hoping that the Academy chooses Hell and Back Again. However, I’m also hearing that Undefeated and If A Tree Falls are pretty good as well. That said, I’m sticking with Afghanistan over football and the Earth Liberation Front.

 
DOCUMENTARY SHORT SUBJECT
  • The Barber of Birmingham: Foot Soldier of the Civil Rights Movement
  • God Is the Bigger Elvis
  • Incident in New Baghdad
  • Saving Face
  • The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom

Eimer Note: With The Help being nominated this year, I’m going with another civil rights short film, The Barber of Birmingham, to win an award as well. Haven’t seen any of the nominees, I’m just going with my gut.

 
FILM EDITING
  • Anne-Sophie Bion and Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
  • Kevin Tent, The Descendants
  • Kirk Baxter and Angus Wall, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
  • Thelma Schoonmaker, Hugo
  • Christopher Tellefsen, Moneyball
Eimer Note: Film editing is a toughie. Before last year, I had picked every film-editing Academy Award winner since I've been picking Academy award winners. This year I’m going to have to go with Thelma Schoonmaker for Hugo. It just feels like Scorcese’s long-time editing collaborator is going to win for some reason. Again, would like to see The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo pick up something. But, alas, I don't see it happening.

 
MAKEUP
  • Martial Corneville, Lynn Johnston and Matthew W. Mungle, Albert Nobbs
  • Nick Dudman, Amanda Knight and Lisa Tomblin, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
  • Mark Coulier and J. Roy Helland, The Iron Lady
Eimer Note: Period British pieces Nobbs and The Iron Lady will equal each other out. Thus, another Brit film, Harry Potter will win.

 
MUSIC (ORIGINAL SCORE)
  • John Williams, The Adventures of Tintin
  • Ludovic Bource, The Artist
  • Howard Shore, Hugo
  • Alberto Iglesias, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
  • John Williams, War Horse
Eimer Note: Sadly John Williams' two(!) nominations will equal each other out. So, I’m going with The Artist on this. Sure, everyone wants to vote for Williams. But, for a film that relies a lot on music and less on talk not to mention has been garnering such great reviews, how can you not go with Ludovic Bource?

 
MUSIC (ORIGINAL SONG)
  • "Man or Muppet" from The Muppets, Bret McKenzie
  • "Real in Rio" from Rio, Sergio Mendes, Carlinhos Brown and Siedah Garrett
Eimer Note: My stone-cold lock pick is Man or Muppet. I thought it was funny, entertaining and, since there are only two nominees, there can be only one! Check it out here.

 
SOUND EDITING
  • Drive
  • The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
  • Hugo
  • Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon
  • War Horse
Eimer Note: Fincher is a known perfectionist, even when it comes to his sound, special effects and cinematography, so I’m going with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Truth be told, any of these could win. Don’t believe me? Check out this little GWTDT sound editing snippet I found on youtube.
SOUND MIXING
  • The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
  • Hugo
  • Moneyball
  • Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon
  • War Horse

Eimer Note: Again, going with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo on this one as well. But, again, any of these could legitimately win. Although Transformers could sweep both categories as well.

 
VISUAL EFFECTS
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
  • Hugo
  • Real Steel
  • Rise of the Planet of the Apes
  • Transformers: Dark Side of the Moon

Eimer Note: I'm going to have to go with one of my fave films of last year Rise of the Planet of the Apes…although the dragon in Harry Potter was pretty freaking cool. Check out this ROTPOTA SFX snippet on YouTube

 
SHORT FILM (ANMATED)
  • Dimanche/Sunday
  • The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore
  • La Luna
  • A Morning Stroll
  • Wild Life

Eimer Note: I'm going with Pixar’s La Luna since this has been the first time in a while that a Pixar film hasn’t been nominated for Best Animated Feature Film. I’m thinking the Academy will toss Pixar a bone in this category. Plus, judging by the little snippet found onYouTube (it will air before their Summer movie Brave), it looks cute, fun and interesting.

 
SHORT FILM (LIVE ACTION)
  • Pentecost
  • Raju
  • The Shore
  • Time Freak
  • Tuba Atlantic

Eimer Note: So, haven’t seen any of these either. However, I checked out this little snippet on YouTube and it seems like Tuba Atlantic is the way to go. It’s a bit quirky, a bit fun and a bit on the strange side with interesting enough cinematography. I’m going with this one with The Shore a strong second.

 
Well, there you have it. I'll post a re-cap on Monday to see how many categories I correctly picked.

 
See you then...

2 comments:

Carrie said...

I did see The Artist, and you're right that it will probably win. Having said that, I think it's sort of like Avatar in that a big part of the allure is the novelty of it. It was good. I enjoyed it, but was it the best film this year? Meh. I honestly can't say what I think this year's best film was. I saw a lot of movies, some of them pretty darn good, but 50 years from now when film historians look back on 2011, I'm not sure anyone is going to say it was a banner year.

Also, everything you say about 50/50 is correct. And Seth Rogan deserves a supporting actor nod just as much as his buddy does for Moneyball.

Your Finest Eimer said...

Thanks Carrie. Yeah, I totally agree with you about The Artist. And, concerning 50/50, that's one of very few movies where I cried. The part when he's getting ready for his surgery is just brutally sad and moving. Thanks for reading!