My 2016 Oscar Ballot

GUYS I 100% THOUGHT THAT THE OSCARS WERE LAST WEEKEND. I was wrong. Oops. Sorry for that misinformation.

I love trying to see the Oscar nominees and make predictions and watch the show and the red carpet (btw this comparison of the first time actors were on the red carpet vs. 2016 is really fun, via Vanity Fair). This year there are a couple movies I haven't seen that have a ton of nominations, so I'm, per usual, behind. Also, I haven't quite reviewed all of the movies I've seen, but, I'm going to make my predictions, anyway.

This NYTs piece about working in Hollywood was so moving and wonderful.

I loved this post from Kottke (and he inspired me with these super cuts!)

BUT, I still like to put my two cents in. Movies I've seen are linked.

Best Picture
"The Big Short"
"Bridge of Spies"
"Mad Max: Fury Road"
"The Martian"
"The Revenant"
"Room" (review to come)

This is such a tricky category. I think I'm rooting for The Martian and The Big Short here. Both stuck with me. The Big Short  made me laugh, got me interested in economics and Wall Street, and was so artfully done. It surprised me with it's humor and humanity. The Martian similarly surprised me--I wasn't expecting something so full of humor or with so much humanity and compassion, I finished watching and felt so optimistic. I'd be happy to see either movie win, but this category is so strong in general!

Best Director

Adam McKay, "The Big Short"
George Miller, "Mad Max: Fury Road"
Alejandro González Iñárritu, "The Revenant"
Lenny Abrahamson, "Room"
Tom McCarthy, "Spotlight"

What a category. I have no claim here, but I'd like to see Alejandro González Iñárritu or Adam McKay take this one.

Best Actor
Bryan Cranston, "Trumbo"
Matt Damon, "The Martian"
Leonardo DiCaprio, "The Revenant"
Michael Fassbender, "Steve Jobs"
Eddie Redmayne, "The Danish Girl"

We all know that Leonardo DiCaprio is finally getting his Oscar, and I think he deserves it. I might say that Michael Fassbender's Steve Jobs was an amazing, unlikable portrait of a genius, but, LD has deserved this since he got snubbed for Gilbert Grape. 

Best Actress
Cate Blanchett, "Carol"
Brie Larson, "Room"
Jennifer Lawrence, "Joy"
Charlotte Rampling, "45 Years"
Saoirse Ronan, "Brooklyn"

Of the movies I've seen, I'd like this to go to Brie Larson for Room. She was amazing--strong and vulnerable, desperate and protective, just surprising and wonderful. Saoirse Ronan was also wonderful, and is a close second for me.

Best Supporting Actor
Christian Bale, "The Big Short"
Tom Hardy, "The Revenant"
Mark Ruffalo, "Spotlight"
Mark Rylance, "Bridge of Spies"
Sylvester Stallone, "Creed"

This category is stacked. Christian Bale was amazing. Tom Hardy was so villainous. Mark Ruffalo was so human. Mark Rylance was so subtle. It seems like the odds are favoring Sly Stalone, but I'm rooting for Mark Ruffalo, by a hair.

Best Supporting Actress
Jennifer Jason Leigh, "The Hateful Eight"
Rooney Mara, "Carol"
Rachel McAdams, "Spotlight"
Alicia Vikander, "The Danish Girl"
Kate Winslet, "Steve Jobs"

I loved Alicia Vikander in Ex Machina so very much that even though I haven't seen Danish Girl, I'm still rooting for her in that film. Kate Winslet was wonderful in Steve Jobs, too. I'd be happy if she took the metal, but really, Vikander was something to behold. 

Best Original Screenplay
"Inside Out"
"Straight Outta Compton"

This goes to Ex Machina for me. Spotlight was wonderful, but based on newspaper articles, so I'm going for the imagination it took to develop Bridge of Spies. Straight Outta Compton I haven't seen yet, so that might take the cake, but the imagination in Ex Machina and the subtle crescendo of the conversations that move you closer and closer to a conclusion left me in awe at the end of this film.

Best Adapted Screenplay

Of the above, I've only read Room, but from what I hear, Brooklyn veered from the book, The Martian was a wonderful interpretation of the movie. I'll make a reading list based on this category and report back, but I think Brooklyn was beautiful and deserves this award. (Though I don't know anyone who's read Carol so perhaps I'm missing a voice there!)

Best Documentary Feature
"The Look of Silence"

This was tricky... I loved Amy, AND Winter on Fire, but, ultimately Amy captured my attention and was a surprising and revealing portrait of an artist. Winter on Fire came in second by a hair for it's inspirational take on a current event that has so many international implications to this day, and Miss Simone eked in right behind that as a portrait of an artist I've long admired, but known little about.

Best Digital Effects
"The Revenant"
"Star Wars: The Force Awakens"

I just loved Ex Machina--Alicia Vikander is just... breathtaking--and the effects here are pretty cool. They turn her into a robot, but a very human robot. It's subtle and convincing. I'm rooting for that in this category.
Best Cinematography
"The Hateful Eight"
"Mad Max: Fury Road"
"Sicario" (review to come)

The Revenant featured some of the most breath-taking vistas--the quiet snow, the rushing rivers, the gory battle scenes, the decrepit base, the buffalo, there were so many awe-inducing scenes. This gets my vote, though I've only seen Sicario in this category to compare it to, and that was beautiful, too.

Who are you rooting for?

Popsugar made a really pretty printable Oscar Ballot form, if you want one for your viewing party.

Also, Food52 did their own Oscar Winners (all recipes) and it's hilarious and fun.


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