12 Years a Slave

Obligatory Oscars Predictions

12 Years a Slave

Best Supporting Actor

Who will win: Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club)
Who should win: Either Barkhad Abdi (Captain Phillips) or Michael Fassbender (12 Years a Slave)

We need to remember that the Oscars etches films and actors forever in film history. It should memorialize the best performances and films of the year. Of course it doesn’t always do that (see Crash).

They’re going to say Jared Leto did a great job. He didn’t. Jaye Davidson probably did the best job portraying a MTF transgendered person in The Crying Game. Leto’s performance was completely over the top, it bordered on insulting. And don’t tell me about his character being real — his character is fiction, created just to make the main character look better.

I really did like Abdi’s performance as a Somali pirate. You sensed the urgency, the fear, the hesitation and desperation he was in. And kudos to Fassbender for acting without showing peen. I’ll be pleasantly surprised if either makes that walk.

Best Supporting Actress

Who Will Win: Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave)
Who Should Win: Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave)

What a devastating performance. Just no words. If she doesn’t win, I don’t know.

Best Actress

Who Will Win: Amy Adams (American Hustle)
Who Should Win: Cate Blanchett (Blue Jasmine)

Putting aside the Woody Allen perv issue, Blanchett is among the titans of actresses we have right now. It’s her, Meryl Streep, Kate Winslet. Perhaps more that I’ve not thought of. In Blue Jasmine she plays the repressed New England WASP suddenly flung into poverty perfectly. I thought the movie dragged a bit, but Blanchett lit it up.

I’ll give Amy Adams credit though. She did a great job in a godawful film. Her and her sideboob did their best to try and salvage the muck that was American Hustle. It didn’t.

Best Actor

Who Will Win: Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club)
Who Should Win: Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street)

I hated everything about Dallas Buyers Club. People are remarking about McConaughey’s transformation for the role. Then why hasn’t Christian Bale won multiple Oscars?

Leo’s performance blew me away. Everyone can accept that The Wolf of Wall Street isn’t Scorsese at his best, but Leo made sitting down for three hours bearable. And no one can tell me the Quaalude overdosing scene wasn’t the best Buster Keaton tribute this side of The General.

Best Director

Who Will Win: Alfonso Cuarón (Gravity)
Who Should Win: Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave)

The best things Gravity has going for it: it looks pretty and is only 91 minutes. The problem is that it means it should win for special effects and editing, not directing. McQueen made a film that is damn near perfect and doesn’t fall into the same traps as his previous films did.

Best Picture

Who Will Win: American Hustle
Who Should Win: 12 Years a Slave

I’ve made no secret I really fucking hated American Hustle. Like Fox Sports 1, it hyped fun. Look at this fun film with fun actors having fun with this fun story. The problem was it wasn’t fun, was so thoroughly haphazardly made and was 2 hours too long.

Since my favorite films from the past year aren’t represented here, the best remaining is 12 Years a Slave. If you’ve not seen this movie, you should. I don’t have the words to express how amazing this movie is.

Etc.

  • My favorite movie of the year was The Act of Killing. It should win for best documentary feature.
  • It’s good to see that Wong Kar-Wai’s The Grandmaster is up for best cinematography and best costume design. I believe these are his first two nominations. Incredulous.
  • I’m still aghast that Fruitvale Station and Spring Breakers were completely snubbed.