It seems it is all about “action and impact” with this 2016 Best Picture Academy Awards. I am rooting for “Spotlight” to win, but am also glad that “Room” was nominated. In my view, “The Revenant” had its fair share of flaws to be seen here so proudly taking the nominee’s place. We don’t see here either “Carol” or “Steve Jobs”, surprise, surprise, and what about “Inside Out”? The Academy had no trouble nominating the animations “Toy Story 3” or “Up” in the general film category of Best Picture in 2011 and 2010 respectively. Why such a perfect animation as “Inside Out” is ignored here now?
- Cate Blanchett in Carol
- Brie Larson in Room
- Jennifer Lawrence in Joy
- Charlotte Rampling in 45 Years
- Saoirse Ronan in Brooklyn
Cate Blanchett was great in “Carol”, but so was she in Woody Allen’s “Blue Jasmin” for which she won her Oscar Award. I will not be surprised if one day she will top Meryl Streep herself with her Academy Awards’ wins, but probably not this February. I particularly enjoyed Saoirse Ronan’s performance in “Brooklyn”, and now matter how powerful and determined Brie Larson was in “Room”, Ronan will still be my favourite to win.
- Bryan Cranston in Trumbo
- Matt Damon in The Martian
- Leonardo DiCaprio in The Revenant
- Michael Fassbender in Steve Jobs
- Eddie Redmayne in The Danish Girl
I secretly hoped to see Will Smith here for his performance in “Concussion“, which was excellent, but miracles do not just happen. And, ok, everyone is talking about Leonardo DiCaprio and his first Academy Award win, and, in part, I share this enthusiasm. DiCaprio was nominated for a whooping 6 Academy Awards (two goes for “The Wolf of Wall Street”), and won none of those. In 2014, he was nominated for “The Wolf of Wall Street” (who can ever forget that “past-its-date-drug-sequence”?), and before that we had “Blood Diamond”, “The Aviator” and “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape”. Well, has his time finally come? It is a safe bet. However, I cannot help but compare his ardent performance in “The Revenant” to Natalie Portman’s performance in “Black Swan” (2010). There may be a fine line between overexertion and over-exercise and being the best actor, but since I don’t see any other actor in the category coming as far as DiCaprio in his skill of showing utmost determination to survive, I will have my bet only on him.
- The Big Short – Adam McKay
- Mad Max: Fury Road – George Miller
- The Revenant – Alejandro G. Iñárritu
- Room – Lenny Abrahamson
- Spotlight – Tom McCarthy
And no nomination for Ridley Scott for “The Martian”? Hard luck….I will go for Tom McCarthy simply on the instinct, but either Adam McKay or George Miller will also be good.
- Bridge of Spies
- Ex Machina
- Inside Out
- Ronnie del Carmen
- Straight Outta Compton
First reaction here: no Tarantino for “The Hateful Eight”? This seems very unfair to me, and I hope this has nothing to do with the “leaked script” affair? “Inside Out” was well crafted, but so was “Bridge of Spies” and “Spotlight”, so it is difficult to predict.
- The Hateful Eight
- Mad Max: Fury Road
- The Revenant
“Mad Max: Fury Road” appeals to me the most. That, or “Sicario”, and that may have something to do with the issue I have with Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu films.
Best animated feature
- Anomalisa – Charlie Kaufman, Duke Johnson and Rosa Tran
- Boy and the World – Alê Abreu
- Inside Out – Pete Docter and Jonas Rivera
- Shaun the Sheep Movie – Mark Burton and Richard Starzak
- When Marnie Was There – Hiromasa Yonebayashi and Yoshiaki Nishimura
“When Marnie Was There” is sweet, but “Inside Out” is my favourite and the safest bet. This animated picture is a masterpiece and should really be seen by everyone.