Saturday, March 14, 2015

Top 10: Best Oscar Wins Of The Decade So Far

Hello, Bloggers, since we are at the other half of the decade, I figured I'd share my thoughts on what I think are the best Oscar wins of the decade so far. Here we go:

10. Birdman wins Best Cinematography: Fresh off of his previous win the year before for Gravity, Emmanuel Lubezki strikes again for his even more impressive camera work in Birdman in which he helps structure the film as if it was one long take. Well done, Chivo!

9. Alfonso Cuaron wins Best Director: Even though this win was such a foregone conclusion, it was certainly not a bad one. Not only was this the best choice, but it was a great win for the sci-fi genre and for the Hispanic filmmaking community. Win! Win! Win!

8. Her wins Best Original Screenplay: When the Academy had the decision of picking either American Hustle's more bombastic screenplay or Her's more quiet meditation of love, they decided to take a chance and go quieter by awarding Spike Jonze's beautiful screenplay. It is also a decision where they award the unconventional as Her is a different kind of love story. No matter how you slice it, it is a wonderful decision.

7. Matthew McConaughey wins Best Actor: While McConaughey has received plenty of praise for his drastic weight loss for his role in Dallas Buyers Club, his performance is still something to behold as he transforms himself not just physically but mentally as well. Plus, he gets bonus points for the 180 with his career and winning for not just a redefining performance, but a career-best one.

6. The Social Network wins Best Original Score: Normally, I don't focus too much attention on the Score winners, but this win is spectacular because they decided to recognize something different by awarding Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross for their less classical and more modernized score. Not to mention, they were up against category mainstays like Alexandre Desplat and Hans Zimmer, so that also makes this win pretty exciting.

5. Patricia Arquette wins Best Supporting Actress: Normally, when the Academy recognizes acting performances, they like ones that are larger than life and showy and full of clip scenes. While Arquette has a few of her scenes, she still manages to go low key and allow the audience to witness her character's drastic arc over the course of 12 years. This performance in a 12-year story is one for the ages.

4. J.K. Simmons wins Best Supporting Actor: After so many years in the industry, J.K. Simmons finally got his due for his intense performance in Whiplash. Some could argue that his performance is nothing but verbal tirades, but to me, it is a mix of the obvious and the subtle as while he does shout at his students, when out of the classroom, he calmly masters the art of manipulation. One of the best winners ever in this category.

3. The Social Network wins Best Adapted Screenplay: Despite The Social Network not winning Best Picture or Director (especially Director), it still managed to snag an award for one of its most important elements which features snappy dialogue, complex characters, and story that has the audience asking questions, which is what true cinema is supposed to do in my opinion.

2. Cate Blanchett wins Best Actress: The minute Blue Jasmine came out, many of us knew that Cate Blanchett had this one in the bag. It is perhaps one of the more complex female performances in recent memory and Blanchett managed to sweep throughout the awards circuit  on merit since she was practically invisible during the campaign trail and we could use more wins like that. Not only is this a performance that can be studied, but also one that has a rewatchability factor.

1. Birdman wins Best Picture: I love this win for several reasons. One is that they went with something edgy and modern as well as something that is comedic. Plus, it is a good way to honor a film about superheroes and honor something that is cinematic rather than prestigious and sentimental because usually it is the other way around. Hopefully, this trend of honoring cinema continues.

Honorable Mentions:

Natalie Portman wins Best Actress

Anne Hathaway wins Best Supporting Actress

Alejandro Gonzalez Innaritu wins Best Director

Christian Bale wins Best Supporting Actor

Birdman wins Best Original Screenplay

Ida wins Best Foreign Language Film

"Skyfall" wins Best Original Song

So that is my list of what I consider to be the Top 10 Oscar Winners Of The Decade so far. Whether you agree or disagree,  please feel free to write your thoughts in the comments section.  Thanks for reading!