â€¦â€¦.. and now for something completely different
2016 Oscars. The most competitive year I can remember and an unusual one. Nine Irish nominations in the major categories though none for blacks which has led to Spike Lee calling for â€˜a blackoutâ€™. Also interesting though unlikely to cut much ice here 12 times nominated â€˜The Revenantâ€™ was the highest grossing film of all time in Russia.Â
(WARNING: Just a reminder of my track record. Iâ€™m the one who in 2005 said Mikeâ€™s 50/1 shot on Barack Obama had no chance.)
Best Picture: The Big Short, Bridge of Spies, Brooklyn, Mad Max, The Martian, The Revenant, Room, Spotlight.At least six of them would be worthy winners but realistically I think it’ll be between three. â€˜The Revenantâ€™ â€˜The Big Shortâ€™ and â€˜Spotlightâ€™.Â â€˜Spotlightâ€™ is the story of paedophile priests abusing kids in Boston. â€˜The Big Shortâ€™ is a tale of bankers doing the same to everyone else and â€˜The Revenantâ€™ is a story of revenge. â€˜Spotlightâ€™ was well told but journalists chasing a story has been done in â€˜All the Presidentâ€™s Menâ€™. So Iâ€™m wavering between â€˜The Revenantâ€™ and â€˜The Big Shortâ€™. A difficult choice but I’m going for â€˜The Revenantâ€™.
Best Actor:Michael Fassbender, Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio ÂEddie Redmayne, Bryan Cranston.ÂMy two favourites are Fassbender as â€˜Steve Jobsâ€™ and DiCaprio as the ravaged survivor in â€˜The Revenantâ€™. So a multi-millionaire narcissist or a salt of the earth fur trapper? Iâ€™m going for the fur trapper!
Best Actress: Cate Blanchett, Brie Larson, Jennifer Lawrence, Charlotte Rampling, Saoirse RonanIt just gets harderâ€¦ Cate Blanchett as the predatory lesbian in â€˜Carolâ€™, Brie Larsonâ€™s chilling captivity in â€˜Roomâ€™ or â€˜Saoirse Ronanâ€™s one way ticket to Brooklyn. All excellent but Iâ€™m going for Brie Larson.
Supporting Actor: Christian Bale, Tom Hardy, Mark Ruffalo, Mark Rylance, Sylvester Stallone.Stallone is much more engaging as a shambling ex champ than he ever was as Rocky but Mark Rylance as the understated Soviet spy in â€˜Bridge of Spiesâ€™ is magnetic. I worry that American icons start at an advantage so it’ll probably be Stallone though Iâ€™d go for Rylance.
Supporting Actress: Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rooney Mara, Rachel Adams, Alicia Viklander, Kate Winslet.Rooney Mara was compelling as Cate Blanchettâ€™s lesbian lover in â€˜Carolâ€™Â as was Alicia Viklander as the bohemian wife of transsexual Eddie Redmayne in â€˜The Danish Girlâ€™. I’m going to go for Rooney Mara.
Best Director: The Big Short, Mad Max, Revenant, Room, SpotlightIf â€˜The Revenantâ€™ wins Best Film Alejandro Inarritu will almost certainly win Best Director which will make it two years on the trot. A very rare achievement. Second choice would be Irishman Lenny Abrahamson for the cleverly directed â€˜Roomâ€™.
Animation: Anomalisa, Boy and the World, Inside Out, Shaun the Sheep Movie, When Marnie Was There.SeanTâ€™s favourite â€˜Inside Outâ€™. Put your house on it.
Cinematography: Carol, The Hateful Eight, Mad Max, The Revenant, Sicario.â€˜The Revenantâ€™. Brilliantly photographed by Emannuel Lubeski. I backed him in 2010 when he lost so second time lucky?
Costume Design: Mad Max, Cinderella, Carol, The Danish Girl, The Revenant.I loved the clothes in â€˜Carolâ€™ but â€˜Mad Maxâ€™ was inspired. Iâ€™m going to go for â€˜Carolâ€™.
Documentary: Amy, Cartel Land, The Look of Silence, What Happened Miss Simone, Winter on Fire‘Amyâ€™. An uncompromising portrayal of Amy Winehouse. A fine piece of work by English documentary maker Asif Capadia.
Makeup: Mad Max, 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared, The Revenantâ€˜Mad Maxâ€™.
Sound Editing: Mad Max, The Martian, The Revenant, Sicario, Star Warsâ€˜Mad Maxâ€™ or â€˜The Revenantâ€™. Iâ€™m going for the longest odds.
Sound Mixing: Mad Max, Revenant, Star Wars, The Martian, Bridge of Spies‘Mad Max’ or â€˜The Revenantâ€™. Ditto.
Film Editing: The Big Short, Mad Max, Revenant, Spotlight, Star Wars‘Mad Maxâ€™.
Foreign Language: Son of Saul and othersâ€¦I wouldn’t normally recommend something I haven’t seen but a film maker friend almost choked watching this holocaust film. By all accounts a difficult watch but brilliant. So â€˜Son of Saulâ€™.
Original Score: Bridge of Spies, Carol, The Hateful Eight, Sicario. Star WarsEnnio Morricone â€˜The Hateful Eightâ€™.
Production Design: Bridge of Spies, The Danish Girl, Mad Max, The Martian, The RevenantThe whacky â€˜Mad Maxâ€™.
Visual Effects: Ex Machina, Mad Max, The Martian, The Revenant, Star Warsâ€˜The Revenantâ€™ but â€˜Ex Machinaâ€™ is an interesting long shot.
Adapted Screenplay: The Big Short, Brooklyn, Carol, The Martian, Room.â€˜The Big Shortâ€™ or â€˜Roomâ€™. Both very good but for originality I’ll go for â€˜The Big Shortâ€™.
Original Screenplay: Bridge of Spies, Ex Machina, Inside Out, Spotlight, Straight Outta ComptonUnusual to have an animation nominated for best original screenplay but â€˜Inside Outâ€™ is exactly that. Itâ€™s a tough choice between that and the very well crafted â€˜Spotlightâ€™. Iâ€™ll go for â€˜Spotlightâ€™.
Roger Alexander is a film-maker and longstanding PB poster. This is the seventh time he’s posted on his Oscar predictions Â and his record is very good