Saturday, January 25, 2014

Oscars 2014: Best Picture

Hello, Bloggers, today, I have finally come to the granddaddy of all Oscar categories: Best Picture. Let's take a look at the nominees:

12 Years A Slave: Ever since its rave reviews and since it starting sweeping critics' awards left to right, 12 Years A Slave has been a clear Best Picture frontrunner. It has so much buzz, that even if it doesn't take home Best Director, it could still win the prize. With a Critics' Choice, Golden Globe, and Producers Guild win for Best Picture, it is almost halfway there. Of course, any film could pull off an upset, but because 2013 has been such a great year for movies, then many of us will just enjoy the ceremony.

American Hustle: One of the other frontrunners for Best Picture, American Hustle has been picking up steam when it won the SAG Award for Best Ensemble. Some say that this could mean Hustle could actually win Best Picture, but the Best Ensemble award is usually given to films that are all its actors and some of the other films nominated are about more than just that, including the two strong frontrunners that Hustle is up against it. Of course, anything can happen on Oscar night, and I would say to keep a watchful eye on this film.

Captain Phillips: While the film got snubbed for Best Actor and Best Director, Captain Phillips still managed to score a nod for not just Best Supporting Actor, but Best Picture. It has a bit of a longshot at winning though. However, this is one of the few nominated films that slightly gears towards minimalism as there are limited characters and settings, just like Gravity and All Is Lost. Its films like those that show you can tell a story on screen, no matter how many set pieces there are.

Dallas Buyers Club: When I made my predictions for what will be nominated for Best Picture, I said that since 12 Years could be this year's Schindler's List, Dallas Buyers Club could be this year's Philadelphia. However, the only difference is that Philadelphia wasn't nominated for Best Picture. A win for Best Picture for this small film may seem unlikely, but there could be a chance that one of the film's main actors could take home a prize for the film instead.

Gravity: Like with Hustle, Gravity is picking up steam when it actually tied with 12 Years A Slave for the Producers Guild award for Best Film, and that had never happened with that award before. If a tie were to happen this year, then it would be the first time that had ever happened in that category. But, I feel Gravity will likely suffer Avatar fate and get recognized for its technological achievements, which it definitely should.

Her: If there is any film that I think could upset either 12 Years, Hustle, or Gravity, it might just be Her (pun intended). Although, Her has a much better shot at winning Best Original Screenplay, so at least it might not be leaving the ceremony empty-handed. I for one an quite glad that Spike Jonze is getting plenty of recognition for his accomplishments for his craft and has been since the days of Being John Malkovich, another unique sci-fi comedy with a plausible situation.

Nebraska: As I have said before, their is usually a "Quirky Indie" in the Best Picture category since they expanded the nominees from 5 to 9 or 10. Looks like this year's Quirky Indie is Nebraska. I still haven't seen the film yet, but I can say it has a long shot at winning the trophy. If there is any category it has a shot at winning, it'll definitely be for Best Actor for Bruce Dern if he were to cause an upset or even June Squibb for Best Supporting Actress.

Philomena: This year's Harvey nominee, or in other words, the one film that producer Harvey Weinstein was able to score a Best Picture nod for. In fact, he could only score 7 overall nominations for his films: 4 for Philomena, 2 for August: Osage County, and 1 for Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. In my opinion, I feel those nominated for Philomena should just enjoy the ceremony because I have a feeling this film will leave the ceremony empty-handed. Even if this film, or Harvey's other pictures don't win, there's no denying he'll be back at the ceremony for years to come.

Wolf of Wall Street: As Jordan Belfort's first wife said in the film, "There's no such thing as bad publicity", and the film's controversy surrounding whether or not they glamorized Belfort's party-filled lifestyle didn't seem to hurt it as Wolf of Wall Street has 5 nominations. I was certainly crossing my fingers that it would, and I was glad to see this get nominated for the grand prize, along with Leonardo DiCaprio for Best Actor, who could seriously upset Matthew McConaughey (I might get to that in a later article). Looks like despite the controversy, the wolf really bit back.

So, those are the nominees for Best Picture, and I have just covered all the major categories. Please feel free to write down in the comments section who you think deserves Best Picture and even write down who you think got shut out. Thanks for reading!