Monday, February 23, 2015

My Probably Terrible and Way Too Early 2016 Best Picture Predictions

Who says it's too early to make Oscar predictions for next year? Where's the fun in waiting for more information? I say, do it now and then shake my head in disgust later this year when it becomes obvious that these are completely off the mark

So here we go. These are my probably terrible and way too early 2016 Best Picture Predictions

Knight of Cups
The Martian
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
St. James Place
Midnight Special
The Revenant
The Hateful Eight
Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens

A part of me thinks this is a very realistic list, and another part of me thinks this would just be too good to be true for me personally. 

Knight of Cups is the new film from Terrence Malick, the man behind my favorite film of all time, The Tree of Life. I don't want to set myself up for disappointment, but I have faith that this will be another special cinematic experience from the genius auteur.

The Martian is based on the fantastic debut novel from Andy Weir of the same name, and it is Ridley Scott returning to science fiction which is where he is at his best (yes, including Prometheus which I love). As someone who has read the book, trust me, this is the type of material that the Academy can fall in love with, and if you take a look at the cast listing of this film, you will see the potential for something remarkable. 

Silence is currently in production with Martin Scorsese at the helm, which alone is enough to believe in its Oscar chances. The only thing about picking this one, it isn't even guarateed to be released in time for next years Academy Awards. It is currently listed as a 2016 release, although I have a gut feeling it finds its way to a film festival later this year and gets a limited release in time to qualify.

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl feels ready to follow in the footsteps of recent Sundance gems that went on to bigger and better things. Just yesterday both Whiplash and Boyhood were major players on Oscar night, and both were debuted at Sundance. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl received overwhelming acclaim at the festival and won both of the top prizes there. I recently read the novel it is based on and yep, this is going to be a special film.

Directed by Spielberg, a script co-written by the Coen brothers, starring Tom Hanks with an October release date? A historical biography spy thriller? Yep, I feel good about the chances of St. James Place

Midnight Special probably won't be nominated for Best Picture. Let me get that out of the way. So why am I picking it? Because Jeff Nichols deserves the damn recognition, with his previous two films being absolutely sublime and yet they were overlooked by the Academy. Take Shelter is one of the finest films to focus on mental illness ever made, and Mud was just pure storytelling magic. In November of this year, his new science fiction drama will be released and I hope it is when the Oscars take notice and showcase the work of this amazing talent. Oh, and I hope Michael Shannon is nominated for Best Actor as well. The fact that he wasn't among the five recognized for Take Shelter is such a shame.

The Revenant certainly feels like a safe, solid pick now, the next film by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu after winning Best Director and Best Picture last night with Birdman. Perhaps a win for Leonardo DiCaprio here? We will have to wait and see.

I hesitate to include The Hateful Eight because I have a gut feeling it may not be up for the top prize after the last two films by Quentin Tarantino were nominated. Going three in a row would be quite the accomplishment, but with the campaigning of Harvey Weinstein backing it and the fact that the Academy clearly appreciates that intoxicating Tarantino style, it just might happen.

Finally, yes I am picking Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. As I am a massive Star Wars fan, this probably is wishful thinking, but hear me out on my logic. After the prequels proved to be such a letdown, if J.J. Abrams is able to put out an amazing new film (and I believe he will) with the original cast involved, released right in the heart of Oscar voting season, I imagine many voters will fall head over heels in love with the movie.

When Abrams rebooted Star Trek, I recall there being talk of it possibly sneaking into the Best Picture race, and that was Star Trek. No offense to the Trek fans out there, but it just isn't as beloved and cherished of a franchise as Star Wars. If he nails this, people like me will be ready to put up Abrams shrines in their bedrooms to honor the man. I wouldn't be that surprised if this film picked up a whole bunch of nominations in 2016, and not just for the technical achievements. 

So there we go. The nine films I currently think will be up for Best Picture next year. I look forward to coming back to this down the road and realizing I only got 1 correct.

No comments:

Post a Comment