Friday, February 22, 2013

Men on Film: If We Picked the Oscars 2012

Borrowing a page from Siskel and Ebert back in the good ol' days, Movie Dearest's very own Men on Film — Chris Carpenter and Kirby Holt — are presenting our own version of "If We Picked the Oscars"! These aren't predictions, but what movies, actors, directors, et al that we would vote for if we were members of the Academy. Plus, we're also chiming in with our picks for the "egregiously overlooked" non-nominees as well as the "Worst Nomination of the Year".

So without further ado, the envelope please...


Life of Pi by Tom Whalen

The nominees for Best Picture are: Amour, Argo, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Les Misérables, Silver Linings Playbook and Zero Dark Thirty.
And our winners would be:
CC: Beasts of the Southern Wild, since I would vote for Amour as Best Foreign Language Film and believe in sharing the wealth.
KH: In an overall strong line up, Life of Pi stands out as the finest in cinematic wonder that is as spiritually-enriching as it is eye-popping.
Egregiously Overlooked: Keep the Lights On, Moonrise Kingdom, Skyfall

The nominees for Best Actor are: Bradley Cooper in Silver Linings Playbook, Daniel Day-Lewis in Lincoln, Hugh Jackman in Les Misérables, Joaquin Phoenix in The Master and Denzel Washington in Flight.
And our winners would be:
CC: Denzel Washington, whose work I haven’t always admired, does in Flight what I believe to be the most truthful work of his career to date.
KH: Day-Lewis may be getting all the buzz (maybe too much buzz), but he already has two Oscars and I like to spread the wealth as well, especially when we have the transformative performances of Hugh Jackman, finally able to fully display his dramatic and musical chops in Les Miz.
Egregiously Overlooked: John Hawkes in The Sessions, Dwight Henry in Beasts of the Southern Wild, Thure Lindhardt in Keep the Lights On

Beasts of the Southern Wild by Rich Kelly

The nominees for Best Actress are: Jessica Chastain in Zero Dark Thirty, Jennifer Lawrence in Silver Linings Playbook, Emmanuelle Riva in Amour, Quvenzhané Wallis in Beasts of the Southern Wild and Naomi Watts in The Impossible.
And our winners would be:
CC: Silver Linings Playbook's Jennifer Lawrence, who gives a riveting performance that ricochets wildly between angst and humor. She is easily the most talented actress of her generation.
KH: I'd give it to little Hushpuppy herself, Quvenzhané Wallis from Beasts of the Southern Wild.
Egregiously Overlooked: Marion Cotillard in Rust & Bone, Maggie Smith in Quartet

The nominees for Best Supporting Actor are: Alan Arkin in Argo, Robert De Niro in Silver Linings Playbook, Philip Seymour Hoffman in The Master, Tommy Lee Jones in Lincoln and Christoph Waltz in Django Unchained.
And our winners would be:
CC: Philip Seymour Hoffman, masterful as The Master’s debauched religious guru.
KH: In a race where they are all previous winners, it comes down to who deserves another Oscar, and my choice would be Tommy Lee Jones who (gratefully) set the screen on fire as a strong-willed abolitionist senator in the otherwise deathly dull Lincoln.
Egregiously Overlooked: Javier Bardem in Skyfall, William H. Macy in The Sessions, Ezra Miller in The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Tom Wilkinson in The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

Les Misérables by Phantom City Creative

The nominees for Best Supporting Actress are: Amy Adams in The Master, Sally Field in Lincoln, Anne Hathaway in Les Misérables, Helen Hunt in The Sessions and Jacki Weaver in Silver Linings Playbook.
And our winners would be:
CC: Amy Adams, who gave what I consider the best and creepiest performance in The Master and has been nominated several times now in this category but has yet to win.
KH: Sometimes the stars align just right to give an actor just the right role at just the right time in their career for an Oscar, and this year it is Anne Hathaway as the tragic, doomed Fantine in Les Miz.
Egregiously Overlooked: Samantha Barks in Les Misérables, Judi Dench in Skyfall, Emma Watson in The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

The nominees for Best Director are: Michael Haneke for Amour, Ang Lee for Life of Pi, David O. Russell for Silver Linings Playbook, Steven Spielberg for Lincoln and Benh Zeitlin for Beasts of the Southern Wild.
And our winners would be:
CC: Ang Lee, whose adaptation of the bestselling book Life of Pi is if nothing else a visual marvel.
KH: I too pick Ang Lee, who won before for Brokeback Mountain and, with Life of Pi, created another instant classic.
Egregiously Overlooked: Ben Affleck for Argo, Sam Mendes for Skyfall, Ira Sachs for Keep the Lights On

Lincoln by Jeff Boyes

The nominees for Best Adapted Screenplay are: Argo, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Life of Pi, Lincoln and Silver Linings Playbook.
And our winners would be:
CC: I think this is the toughest category for me to decide this year. I would lean toward Lincoln both as a testament to its gay author, Tony Kushner, as well as his usually exemplary prose.
KH: Another highly competitive category, David Magee's adaptation of Life of Pi seamlessly transferred the so-called "unfilmable" novel to the screen.
Egregiously Overlooked: The Perks of Being a Wallflower, The Sessions

The nominees for Best Original Screenplay are: Amour, Django Unchained, Flight, Moonrise Kingdom and Zero Dark Thirty.
And our winners would be:
CC: As much as I admired Flight’s harrowing depiction of an addict’s journey and Moonrise Kingdom’s playful spirit, my heart is with Amour by Michael Haneke.
KH: Wes Anderson's past films were often too quirky for their own good, but his Moonrise Kingdom (co-written by Roman Coppola) is his most accessible - and enjoyable - movie to date.
Egregiously Overlooked: Keep the Lights On, Looper

Amour by Matt Owen

The nominees for Best Cinematography are: Anna Karenina, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Lincoln and Skyfall.
And our winners would be:
CC: Life of Pi is simply amazing to look at, and I give it bonus points for its mastery of immersive 3D that made me feel the bathroom I was in after the movie rocking!
KH: James Bond never looked better thanks to Roger Deakins' crisp photography for Skyfall.
Egregiously OverlookedLes Misérables, Moonrise Kingdom

The nominees for Best Production Design are: Anna Karenina, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Life of Pi, Lincoln and Les Misérables.
And our winners would be:
CC: Similar to my remarks above, and despite my admiration for the look of Anna Karenina, Life of Pi is too gorgeous to resist.
KH: With the (finally, correctly) renamed category one can't help but want to recognize the overall gorgeous look of Life of Pi.
Egregiously Overlooked: Moonrise Kingdom, Prometheus

The nominees for Best Costume Design are: Anna Karenina, Lincoln, Les Misérables, Mirror Mirror and Snow White and the Huntsman.
And our winners would be:
CC: I loved the late Eiko Ishioka’s knowingly, deliriously over-the-top outfits in the campy Snow White tale, Mirror Mirror.
KH: From convicts to prostitutes to soldiers to rebels, Paco Delgado's rich designs helped establish each character in an instant in the epic Les Misérables.
Egregiously Overlooked: Argo, Django Unchained

Django Unchained by Mark Englert

The nominees for Best Original Score are: Anna Karenina, Argo, Life of Pi, Lincoln and Skyfall.
And our winners would be:
CC: The long overdue Mychael Danna composed a score for Life of Pi that is as lovely and haunting as its visuals.
KH: A tough choice between two of my top films from last year, Life of Pi and Skyfall; I'll go with the latter as composer Thomas Newman is also long overdue.
Egregiously Overlooked: Beasts of the Southern Wild, Brave, Cloud Atlas

The nominees for Best Original Song are: "Before My Time" from Chasing Ice, "Everybody Needs a Best Friend" from Ted, "Pi's Lullaby" from Life of Pi, "Skyfall" from Skyfall and "Suddenly" from Les Misérables.
And our winners would be:
CC: As much as I love “Skyfall,” Adele and Bond theme songs in general, I was struck by the beautiful, heartfelt simplicity of Les Misérables' “Suddenly” and would vote for it.
KH: Another case of perfect timing: as the 007 series celebrates its 50th year in the movies, we get Adele's lush title tune for Skyfall, likely to be the first Bond song to win an Oscar.
Egregiously Overlooked: “From Here to the Moon and Back” from Joyful Noise, "Touch the Sky" from Brave

The nominees for Best Film Editing are: Argo, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook and Zero Dark Thirty.
And our winners would be:
CC: Argo’s editing contributes so much to how engrossing it is.
KH: The "thriller aspect" of Argo is thanks in large part to the fine editing of William Goldenberg.
Egregiously Overlooked: The Avengers, Skyfall.

Silver Linings Playbook by Joshua Budich

The nominees for Best Sound Mixing are: Argo, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Les Misérables and Skyfall.
And our winners would be:
CC: Life of Pi, for its alternately thrilling and pensive blend of natural sounds.
KH: Despite (or maybe because of) all that hype around the "live singing" aspect of Les Misérables, I opt for the dense aural landscape of Skyfall.
Egregiously Overlooked: The Avengers, Brave

The nominees for Best Sound Editing are: Argo, Django Unchained, Life of Pi, Skyfall and Zero Dark Thirty.
And our winners would be:
CC: 007 never sounded so good until Skyfall.
KH: Let's make it a clean sweep: Skyfall.
Egregiously Overlooked: The Avengers, Looper

The nominees for Best Visual Effects are: The Avengers, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Life of Pi, Prometheus and Snow White and the Huntsman.
And our winners would be:
CC: A tough call for me between The Avengers and Life of Pi, but I would likely go with the latter.
KH: Just in case you didn't realize it, that tiger in Life of Pi was entirely created by computer animation, and brilliantly so.
Egregiously Overlooked: Cloud Atlas, Mirror Mirror, Skyfall

The nominees for Best Makeup & Hairstyling are: Hitchcock, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and Les Misérables.
And our winners would be:
CC: The Hobbit’s makeup effects often looked phony to me, likely an unintended result of the high frame rate 3D format in which I watched it, so I would go with the mutton chops of Les Misérables.
KH: The talented crew of The Hobbit managed to make each of the 13(!) dwarfs distinctive and unique.
Egregiously Overlooked: Cloud Atlas, Lincoln

Argo by Anthony Petrie

The nominees for Best Animated Feature are: Brave, Frankenweenie, ParaNorman, The Pirates! Band of Misfits and Wreck-It Ralph.
And our winners would be:
CC: ParaNorman strikes me as the most original out of this strong group of contenders.
KH: Although I enjoyed the creepy fun (and gay inclusiveness) of ParaNorman, my vote goes to the unjustly underrated Brave.
Egregiously Overlooked: The Rabbi’s Cat

The nominees for Best Foreign Language Film are: Amour from Austria, Kon-Tiki from Norway, No from Chile, A Royal Affair from Denmark and War Witch from Canada.
And our winners would be:
CC, KH: J’adore Amour!
Egregiously Overlooked: The Intouchables from France

The nominees for Best Documentary Feature are: 5 Broken Cameras, The Gatekeepers, How to Survive a Plague, The Invisible War and Searching for Sugar Man.
And our winners would be:
CC: How to Survive a Plague, which impressively manages to be both elegiac and inspiring.
KH: I'm baffled by all the awards garnered by the frankly lightweight Searching for Sugar Man, especially over Kirby Dick's gut-wrenching, incendiary exposé of military rape in The Invisible War.
Egregiously Overlooked: Bully, West of Memphis

The nominees for Best Documentary Short are: Inocente, Kings Point, Mondays at Racine, Open Heart and Redemption.
And our winners would be:
CC: The gripping, moving Open Heart.
KH: At this point, have only seen Inocente, so abstain for now.

Zero Dark Thirty by Godmachine

The nominees for Best Animated Short are: Adam and Dog, Fresh Guacamole, Head Over Heels, Maggie Simpson in The Longest Daycare and Paperman.
And our winners would be:
CC: The beautifully-drawn Adam and Dog is the standout from multiple perspectives: artistic, relational and spiritual/theological.
KH: Paperman is getting all the press (ha!), but I was enthralled by the lovely and funny Adam and Dog.

The nominees for Best Live Action Short are: Asad, Buzkashi Boys, Curfew, Death of a Shadow (Dood van een Schaduw) and Henry.
And our winners would be:
CC: I liked the intriguing and clever Death of a Shadow.
KH: Curfew struck the right balance of quirkiness and sentimentality for me.

And now for our own special category of dishonorable mention, the Worst Nomination of the Year:
CC: In general, I consider Lincoln the most overrated film of 2012. It isn’t a bad movie by any means but Steven Spielberg’s direction struck me as schizophrenic, Tommy Lee Jones was chewing the scenery, and the naturalistic cinematography came across as too dark at times. And, while good, Daniel Day-Lewis failed to epitomize our 16th president in my mind.
KH: While it wasn't a bad performance, I am still puzzled about Jacki Weaver's nomination for playing Bradley Cooper's mother/Robert De Niro's wife in Silver Linings Playbook. Chalk it up to "riding on the coattails" of her fellow cast members, I suppose.

And so the final march to Oscar glory, for this year anyway, begins. Tune in to ABC this Sunday to see who wins, as well as which nominees are rocking the best (and worst) gowns, most attractive escorts and most heartfelt acceptance speeches.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...