Livin’ For the Weekend: The 88th Academy Awards

(cover photo via)

Winter is ending. Well we’re close at least. The final weekend of our shortest month usually marks numerous occasions: a break in snow, trade deadlines for basketball and hockey (or around this time), the end of conference play in college basketball, and the Oscars. Awards season culminates Sunday night with the best in last year’s films. Let’s take a look:

88th Academy Awards

Some Notes:

  • Straight Outta Compton may not win Best Original Screenplay but it is fantastic go see it ASAP it you haven’t
  • I’m really excited for Chris Rock to host. The recent attempts by comedians hosting have been alright at best, but he’ll easily put forth the best effort of them all

Best Animated Feature:

Nominees: Anomalisa, Boy & the World, Inside Out, Shaun the Sheep Movie, and When Marnie Was There

My Pick: Inside Out. Another Pixar home run, may be the biggest lock of the night.

Best Supporting Actor:

Nominees: Sylvester Stalone (Creed), Christian Bale (The Big Short), Tom Hardy (The Revenant), Mark Ruffalo (Spotlight), and Mark Rylance (Bridge of Spies)

My pick: The only one of these five movies I saw was The Revenant and I thought it was great. Hardy is fantastic as John Fitzgerald and he plays off of Leo so well. But this is Sly’s to lose; he’s already won the Gloden Globe for his 7th film as the legendary Philadelphian Rocky Balboa. Much like John Wayne’s win for True Grit, while Stalone’s performance is great, this is also a “career win.”

Best Supporting Actress:

Nominees: Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Hateful Eight), Rooney Mara (Carol), Rachel McAdams (Spotlight), Alicia Vikander (The Danish Girl), and Kate Winslet (Steve Jobs)

My Pick: Kate Winslet is getting a lot of attention as is Vikander. While I love Quentin Tarantino and how he seems to match actor with character perfectly, The Hateful Eight has not received the acclaim we would have hoped. I’m going with another of my favorite writers’ (Aaron Sorkin) characters and picking Winslet.

Best Actress:

Nominees: Cate Blanchett (Carol), Brie Larson (Room), Jennifer Lawrence (Joy), Charlotte Rampling (45 Years), and Saoirse Ronan (Brooklyn)

My Pick: Haven’t seen any of these although I do really want to see Room. Why? Because Brie Larson is running away with all of the Best Actress awards leading into Sunday.

Best Director:

Nominees: Adam McKay (The Big Short), George Miller (Mad Max: Fury Road), Alejandro G. Inarritu (The Revenant), Lenny Abrahamson (Room), and Tom McCarthy (Spotlight)

My Pick: Inarritu will probably win, but Mad Max is so well done. The action, acting, and effects come together perfectly and you have the head honcho to thank for that: George Miller

Best Picture:

Nominees: The Big Short, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Martian, The Revenant, Room, and Spotlight

My Pick: Like Best Director, The Revenant will probably win, and I throughly enjoyed that movie. It is definitely a great follow up to Bridman for Inarritu. However personally, I LOVED The Martian. It is easily my favorite movie of 2015. Best Comedy at the Golden Globes to Best Picture at the Oscars.

And finally:

Best Actor:

Nominees: Bryan Cranston (Trumbo), Matt Damon (The Martian), Leonardo DiCaprio (The Revenant), Michael Fassbender (Steve Jobs), and Eddie Redmayne (The Danish Girl)

My Pick: I purposely saved this one for last. I mentioned Sly’s win will be a “career win” like John Wayne’s for True Grit. Leo winning is also a HUGE career win and much like Wayne in True Grit. Both are vets of the industry, have been nominated multiple times, and finally win by playing a gritty man of the West. The infamous Oscars after party will probably last for weeks across oceans on Leo’s yacht.


Cheers indeed Leo (photo)


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