May 23, 2013
Written by Mark Schumann, Father of Three
Thursday, 23 February 2012 12:32
Each year, predicting the Oscar winners is a balancing act of who should win and who will win. This week, the Reel Dad shares his choices and forecasts for the Academy Awards on February 26th.
Should win: Hugo. While 2011, overall, was not a memorable year for movies, we will remember how Hugo defined the visual potential of 3-D to enhance the narrative. This special family film reminds us why we love to see movies on the big screen.
Will win: The Artist. The Academy adores novelty and The Artist is this year’s big surprise. Imagine the audacity to make an entertaining silent and black-and-white film on a shoestring budget? Plus it’s about Hollywood and movie people cherish movies about movies.
Should win: Brad Pitt, Moneyball. While Jean Dujardin (The Artist) and George Clooney (The Descendants) create the buzz, Pitt’s memorable turn as a middle-aged man who confronts his disappointments is so subtle that, by the end of the film, we feel we know this man.
Will win: Jean Dujardin, The Artist. Early favorite George Clooney could still win even though Dujardin captivates the industry with his charisma, elastic face and endless collection of expressions. He carries The Artist with this original performance.
Should win: Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady. While Viola Davis will likely win for a supporting role, Streep delivers a master class in acting with her smart study of dementia. This actress is so consistent in her work that the Academy seems to take her for granted.
Will win: Viola Davis, The Help. As one of the players in the ensemble, Davis nails her every moment including the touching finale. Her Oscar victory will celebrate her body of work, on stage and screen, and her potential. But she should be competing for Best Supporting Actress.
Best Supporting Actor
Should win: Christopher Plummer, Beginners. He has delivered so many memorable performances over the years - including Captain von Trapp — but this victory is not one of those career Oscars. Plummer is exquisite as a senior citizen who comes out of the closet.
Will win: Christopher Plummer, Beginners. The one sure thing on Oscar night is the standing ovation Plummer will receive for a well-deserved Academy Award.
Best Supporting Actress
Should win: Octavia Spencer, The Help. If Viola Davis was in this category, she would win. Of the nominees, Spencer — with her intoxicating wide eyes — displays an uncanny instinct to be broad during the comedy sequences and touching when the tone shifts to the dramatic.
Will win: Octavia Spencer, The Help. Spencer’s original performance will win unless votes for The Help split with Jessica Chastain. If so, look for Melissa McCarthy to be a surprise winner for her comic tour-de-force in Bridesmaids. If there is a shocker this year, it happens here.
Should win: Martin Scorcese, Hugo. Who would have imagined that senior citizen Scorcese, after finally winning an Oscar for The Departed, would challenge himself to the most ambitious film of his career? He defines what 3-D movies can be in a new genre for him, the family film.
Will win: Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist. Rarely does the winner of the Director’s Guild award fail to win the Oscar.
Best Original Screenplay
Should win: Midnight in Paris. With 23 Oscar nominations over the years, Woody Allen returns to his comic roots. What makes Midnight in Paris so much fun is how vintage Woody finds a new voice as a writer searching for inspiration. Does art imitate life?
Will win: Midnight in Paris. Even though Allen will not appear on Oscar night, the Academy will welcome the chance to recognize his return to the top. Only A Separation, the favorite for Best Foreign Language Film, could deprive him of the Oscar he won’t be present to accept.
Best Adapted Screenplay
Should win: Moneyball. Aaron Sorkin and Steve Zaillian translate a book about numbers into a captivating look at how unlikely heroes try to reinvent professional baseball.
Will win: The Descendants. The Academy will probably award Alexander Payne a consolation prize for not winning Best Picture or Director. Plus voters may be reluctant to give Sorkin a second Oscar after he won last year for The Social Network.
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